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Pedal recommendations please (Phaser, Delay, poss. Overdrive)

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by kevteop, Feb 19, 2008.

  1. kevteop


    Feb 12, 2008
    York, UK
    Trying to round out my pedal board a bit, and I'd like a phaser and a delay in there, maybe an overdrive. Important considerations are:

    No giant boxes - EHX units are already taking up too much room. 9V power *much* preferred if possible (again, EHX-induced anxiety). No expensive boutique stuff - I'm too common to appreciate it. And true or quiet and transparent bypassing - I've spent enough on loopers!

    The delay: I don't need sampling/looping, or stereo panning. Tap-tempo would be nice, as would a momentary switch so I can "hold" it on, but retaining the decay setting, not a permanent-repeat while holding.

    The phaser and overdrive I'm totally open to suggestions, but I would like more tweakability on the phaser than you get on, say, the Small Stone.

    Cheers. :)
  2. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    I think the hangup for most options will be that the small, non-expensive, 9V-operating units mostly have mediocre bypass. You can get into "better bypass" land by going boutique, although there are a few exceptions such as the newer BBE pedals and newer XO/Nano EHX. I don't think you can get the delay features you want in a unit with good bypass at a low price.
  3. Phaser - MXR Phase 90. It sounds like it's more along the size perameters that you are looking for...not sure sure about it's tweakability compared to the Small Stone.

    Delay - Boss DD3 is very simple to use, and doesn't take up a ton of space.
  4. kevteop


    Feb 12, 2008
    York, UK
    Tell me about it - my board is full of them, plus EHX reissues complete with the original design flaws. Maybe I'd be just as well buying a couple more loopers.

    I might take a better look at the newer EHX range but I've already got four of their units in my board and I'm starting to look like their bitch. I really don't want to pay a lot for decent bypassing though - the thought of paying extra for a better way of switching something off is pretty preposterous.
  5. kevteop


    Feb 12, 2008
    York, UK
    Yeah they're both one-knob phasers aren't they? A friend of mine's got an old Phase 90 in his loft somewhere - I'll have to steal it at the weekend and see how it goes.

    I may well end up with one of those. I had one before, it was OK. I was hoping for something that I could just drop in and out with a hold function though, rather than the infinite-loop hold you get on the DD3.
  6. Swimming Bird

    Swimming Bird

    Apr 18, 2006
    Wheaton MD
    You're asking for small size, use of standard power supply, decent bypass and versatility. To me that translates to 'industry standard.'

    Boss and Maxon will both give you exactly what you want. I love my DD-6 and feel very warmly towards my PH-3, but the Maxon pieces are great too.

    As for overdrive, go for a Keeley Blues Driver or maybe a Tube Screamer that has a good bass rep.
  7. Jester85


    Feb 9, 2008
    mxr script phase is very deep on bass. It's not that synthy like a stock phase 90 but more deep and works even on E string.
  8. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    I love my modded Digitech Bad Monkey for OD. good stuff :D
  9. Webtroll

    Webtroll Rolling for initiative

    Apr 23, 2006
    Austin, TX
    While not a phaser a Q-Tron might have the tweakability you're looking for. For overdrive I'm partial to the Fulltone BassDrive.
  10. McHaven


    Mar 1, 2005
    For delay and phaser, I stay EHX. I love how you said you're starting to look like EHX's bitch. Me too man, me too. I use the #1 Echo, and the Small Stone phaser.

    What's bad is that I'm going to be buying more EHX :bag:
  11. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    Nothing wrong with being their bitch, they make quality stuff at reasonable prices. At one time I had 8 of their pedals, but trimmed down since. Sorry, I got no other suggestions on gear, trying to work out my own problems. Good luck though.
  12. Funky Chowder

    Funky Chowder

    Jan 8, 2008
    You have a lot of different options, and everybody will have different opinions as to what will be best sonically and in terms of feature set. Here's mine:

    Delay: Line6 Echo-Park

    Pro's: Small size, inexpensive, sounds great (especially the tape modulation and analog-voiced settings), tap tempo, 9V.

    Cons: In order to engage/disengage the effect, you have to stomp a little harder on the switch, and in order to tap the tempo, you have to stomp a bit lighter on the same switch. I've gotten used to it, but it's not as simple as a Boss switch, so be forewarned. Also, it runs best with its own power supply, but I have daisy-chained it with other effects with no problems.

    Phaser: Boss PH-1r

    Pro's: Boss compact pedal size, 9V, sounds great, has knobs for depth, rate and resonance (so a bit more tweakable than a Small Stone or Phase 90), has a great sweep range, cheap.

    Con's: Discontinued (Boss has a tendency to stop production for some of its best stuff) but pops up in the sub-$100 range many places.

    As far as overdrives go, this is even more contentious in the field of public opinion. Many are designed with guitar in mind, and so, they cut a bit of low end and pump up some mids (e.g. the Ibanez Tube Screamer or any of the millions of variants thereof).

    Valerus may be right on the money with the DigiTech Bad Monkey, since it's supposedly a Tube Screamer with treble and bass controls that work well to not cut as much low as on a stock screamer.

    I personally use a Paul Cochrane Timmy pedal, which is admittedly boutique and goes for a bit on the used market but is $105 new. There's a bit of the waiting list, but you don't have to put any cash down until your pedal is ready.

    Sorry for the long post, but hope this helps, and thanks for the great forum here. :hyper::bassist::hyper:
  13. dannybuoy


    Aug 3, 2005
    I too have a modded Bad Monkey, and can vouch for it. I have just received my DHA VT2 though, so I may be selling the Monkey if it can make the same sounds or better. Seeing as you live in the UK, you could do a lot worse than grab the second hand DHA VT1 that's just popped up on the basschat.co.uk forum! ;)
  14. kevteop


    Feb 12, 2008
    York, UK
    I saw a used Small Stone for a good price earlier today so that's on its way. I think I'll pick up a couple more units to try out alongside it though, hopefully find something in a smaller box!

    I think I'm after an analogue-sounding delay (ideally an analogue unit I suppose but I'd have to forego tap-tempo) - I think the Boss digi boxes sound too squeaky-clean - but I would like to find a unit with a momentary switch as well as an on/off - maybe I'll have to get one modded in.

    I'm planning to pick up a Q-Tron anyway so I suppose I'll find out. The O/D I don't really want to pay a lot for, and Fulltone kit here in the UK is rare so I doubt I'd be able to find a used box. I'll keep my eyes peeled though, thanks!

    This reply is getting long... Line 6 delay: I don't usually like their stuff but it seems like World + Dog has got a DL4 in their board, so I'll give them a try. The only Boss phasers I ever see are PH-2s and -3s, but I'll keep a look out for a #1. I've never even seen a Paul Cochrane pedal so I think that's out!

    Looks really nice but I don't think I want valves in my board if I can avoid it.

    I will try the Bad Monkey - thanks to all for your recommendations.
  15. +1 on the Line 6 echo park

    I own it and I love it. True its not as easy as the Industry standard Boss DD-3 delay however I love the fact It has 3 delay modes: Tape, Digital, and analog. However it doesn't have the hold function but for what its worth its a GREAT pedal!

  16. JanusZarate

    JanusZarate Low End Avenger Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 21, 2006
    Petaluma, CA, USA
    It's tough to find a phaser that's smaller than the Nano Small Stone. Plus it's true bypass. :)

    But if you're looking for a different sound, perhaps the Phase 90 might be worth looking into. It wasn't my cup of tea, though.

    There are digital units that do very convincing analog delay tones, such as the EHX Stereo Memory Man with Hazarai, or the Line 6 DL4 (both of those units have separate tap tempo switches). The only small Boss pedal that can do a variety of delay tones would be the DD-20 Giga Delay; the DD-6 and DD-3 are much simpler "pristine" delays with no tonal options. The EHX #1 Echo is worth looking into if you want a simple digital delay that's very warm-sounding (like analog), but it lacks tap tempo.
  17. Chris Ramlar

    Chris Ramlar

    Feb 8, 2006
    Don't listen! thats an awful pedal :bag: just kidding I just don't want it to get too popular =P
  18. fishtx

    fishtx Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    Endorsing Artist: Genzler Amplification/Spector Basses/Mojo Hand FX
    +2 on the Line 6 echo Park...These can be had now cheap (around $109 new)...I really like the tap tempo, and the "ducking" setting...
  19. Funky Chowder

    Funky Chowder

    Jan 8, 2008
    Actually, you could go for a Diamond Memory Lane delay, which is truly analogue and has tap tempo, but is also a bit bigger, less common power requirement, and more expensive.

    If you really needed to go analogue for delay, then you could get an Arion SAD-1 or an older DOD delay for easily under $100. Again, both are discontinued.

    For myself, I always appreciate having a good range of tonal options with respect to delays. When I use analogue(-voiced) delays, I generally am going for some sort of space/ambience to the sound. Other bass tones and lines I go for might benefit a bit more from the clarity of a really clean delay, like a rhythmic delay with tap tempo. This is why I'm a fan of having at least the option of going either way. YMMV.
  20. crapusername


    Sep 26, 2005
    North Kent.UK
    endorsing artist: Dean guitars, Marshall , Rotosound strings
    as far as delay goes, try a Marshall echohead. They are around £65 retail, and have 6 modes available including an analogue emulation. If you add a tap tempo switch, it will work on all settings.
    as far as OD / Dist goes, try an MXR Distortion 3. If you are using a passive bass, it can do almost all stages of gain required short of all out distortion. If you are looking for something with a bit more gain, there is the Boss HM2. Another discontinued pedal, but can be found for next to nothing on ebay.
    My phaser choice would be the EVH phase 90. It has two voicings - the block logo AND the Script circuits built in and available at the touch of a button.
    Hope this helps!!

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