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Pedal order?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Lauri Lahtinen, Sep 6, 2020.

  1. Lauri Lahtinen

    Lauri Lahtinen

    Sep 1, 2020
    Hi, i have just gotten some pedals and i have no idea in which order to put them. Can someone help? Whats the basic rule of thumb? Right now i just have an octave pedal, boost pedal and an envelope filter. Im also planning on buying some sort of a drive and compression.
    Thanks in advance.

    Cheers, Lauri Lahtinen
    Riff Ranger and nuage420b like this.
  2. Gearhead17

    Gearhead17 Supporting Member

    May 4, 2006
    Mount Prospect, IL
    Basic rule of thumb: learn what each pedal does, then use trial an error to see what order is best for you.

    Learn what each pedal does by itself (Bass, pedal, amp/combo input) then have fun!

    Lastly, I suggest you hold off on getting more pedals until understand the need for the additional pedals. You can make better financial decisions that way and not end up stuck with a bunch of unused pedals.
    SouthpawBass, zontar, equill and 3 others like this.
  3. Ignore this practical advice.......
    Pedals are the color in an otherwise black and white world of bass tones. Buy as many as you like, as often as you can.

    I would put the boost first as octaves and envelope filters like a clear strong signal and swap the other two back and forth to see how they play with each other.
    Drives will behave like a boost with gain (volume) affecting pedals down the chain. Usually in a good way. Compression will even out the spikes and drops in your signal and might limit the abilities of filter pedals to see a full strong signal depending on how much compression is dialed in. Some are comp first people. Some - like me are comp last people. I like to mangle things up before I even things out.
    There are no rules with pedal order so try everything everywhere and see how they react differently in different placements. One players slop is another's holy grail so get busy and have fun.
    Welcome to T.B. where there are no bad questions......just bad answers. :)
    lomo, Winton, zontar and 5 others like this.
  4. Mechayoshi


    Dec 7, 2015
    I guess I’ll be in the middle here. There’s a couple of times I rushed to get an effect and had to resell when it didn’t work out. Not a huge loss, but it did make me wish I’d held off and saved the trouble. Oh and pedals add up, even a couple of “inexpensive” ones and next you know, your pedalboard is full.

    Sometimes a random impulse purchase can be a home run, but no one bats a thousand...TRY not buy as many as you can if possible or at least seek out as many demos as you can and your wallet will be happier.
    Winton, nuage420b, franvarin and 2 others like this.
  5. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    If you put the envelope filter before the octaver, and turn them both on, you might go back in time. They probably work best the other way 'round, but I think you should definitely try that just for kicks.
  6. Lauri Lahtinen

    Lauri Lahtinen

    Sep 1, 2020
    So i cant break or ruin anything by putting pedals in wrong order? Thanks for all the help btw.

    Cheers, Lauri Lahtinen
  7. Teryup


    Oct 16, 2019
    You won't break pedals by messing with the order of the effects. Some combinations will sound bad, but nothing will break. Also, what does and doesn't sound good is a matter of opinion and specific setup and pedals.

    The only real rule I have is that octaves tend to work best early in the chain because a clean signal gives the best tracking.
  8. when i first started with pedals i was unsure about placement, now its a distant memory have fun!
  9. Mosfed


    Apr 21, 2013
    Washington DC
    Partner - CCP Pedals
    For what you have now go bass -> octave -> filter > boost
    Rabidhamster, HolmeBass and westrock like this.
  10. Gearhead17

    Gearhead17 Supporting Member

    May 4, 2006
    Mount Prospect, IL
    Pedals in any order will not break anything. The only thing to watch out for is how loud of a signal you are creating and how the combo/rig will handle it.

    And my practical advice comes from years of buying whatever I wanted, selling at a loss, losing on bad trades, and just causing myself more stress than necessary. Every pedal on my current board has a use and I have a slightly different lineup for each of my bands. If a pedal has no practical use, it gets sold.

    Good luck

    Attached Files:

    Madhouse27 and Highroler79 like this.
  11. Benjamin Earl

    Benjamin Earl Commercial User

    Dec 31, 2008
    Lake Hiawatha, NJ 07034
    Fretboard Visualization Author
    I suggest to mess around to see what sounds good, but I would start with...
    octave > envelope > boost
    After you get the drive and compression I would start with...
    compression > octave > boost > drive > envelope
    octave > boost > drive > envelope > compression
    Bogun likes this.
  12. Yes, experiment and place your pedals in different order, finding the best tone. It's sometimes surprising how some pedals suck down your tone depending on where they are placed in the chain.
  13. You guys/gals only have one (1) pedalboard ???
    I'm building my second board now :D.

    One thing that got perfect in my first board:
    First or at least very early in the signal chain you should have a volume pedal with a separate tuner output.
    The tuner out goes to your normal/boring/always on signal chain.
    The normal volume output goes to a secondary chain with a more "edgy" sound that you engage via the tredle.
    You need 2 amps for this but it is great to be able to overlay the normal bass sound with an octaver and dist.
    Works great for guitar too.
    Zbysek likes this.
  14. monkeyfinger

    monkeyfinger Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Octave->boost->O/D->Filter->Comp. This assumes you are using your comp as more of an always on peak limiting effect.
    Benjamin Earl likes this.
  15. monkeyfinger

    monkeyfinger Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

  16. Lauri Lahtinen

    Lauri Lahtinen

    Sep 1, 2020
    Yes, i plan on using the compressor as an always on pedal. Btw does anybody have experience with the Boss FBM-1 bassman pedal? I could get for a good price and i was wondering, could that work as an overdrive?
  17. monkeyfinger

    monkeyfinger Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    This pedal looks like it's a digital preamp that emulates a Fender tone stack. It was one of the original amp designs from Fender, appearing in the Dual Showman. The eq section is uniquely suited to musical instruments, with a bit of a dip in the mids. There is no true flat setting. You get close with Bass 2, Mid 10, Treble 2. It is highly interactive. For example, increasing bass also increases treble. Some people like that, others don't. I personally like the sound. However, I use mine with a three band fully parametric eq pedal for more precise tone sculpting.

    If you want an eq/preamp pedal with a great vintage vibe and more straight-forward eq, look into the Barber Electronics Linden EQ. It's the tone stack of one of the most famous vintage bass amps of all time, the Ampeg B15. There are also several pedals that emulate the sound and controls of the Ampeg SVT, another iconic bass amp. The Baxandall style eq is much more straight forward, acting more like the eq you find on any basic home stereo system.

    If you do go the Fender tone stack route, I recommend you try out this software. (If you have a Windows machine. ) It will show you visually how the tone stack works.

    Anyway, if you are getting that type of pedal, it would typically be at the end of the chain. I would put it after the comp if you plan to make eq changes on the fly.
    Zbysek and vvvmmm like this.
  18. monkeyfinger

    monkeyfinger Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Here is a good write-up on the Fender tone stack.
  19. onestone


    Jan 18, 2013
    Zbysek likes this.
  20. BioDriver

    BioDriver A Cinderella story

    Aug 29, 2008
    Austin, TX
    The only real "rules" are that loopers/delays tend to go at the end while tuners go at the start. Aside from that, play with the order and decide what works best for you. Personally, I'm running tuner > Octave > distortion > flanger > delay > preamp > monitor.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Mar 2, 2021

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