1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Pedals or buttons?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Growler, Apr 6, 2005.

  1. Growler


    Sep 26, 2004
    Bit of a newbie questions here but...

    Why do some effects have actual "pedals" and others just a couple of buttons? Is it a style thing or do the effects with actual pedals perform differently depending on how far you push them in.

    Ex: The fulltone bassdrive has two buttons while the digitech whammy pedal is an actual pedal.

    Also, for hooking these up to your bass, is it basicaly guitar -> pedal -> amp ?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. Brendan


    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    When you see a pedal, it usually means the effect is controlled with the pedal somehow, like a wah, or a volume pedal. A button means the effect is either on or off. Pedals generally mean they control a variable, and the button means on/off.

    And yeah. Bass>effect>Amp.
  3. SirPoonga


    Jan 18, 2005
    What Brendan said with addition.
    Some stompboxes look like a pedal, but it is just a button under the pedal.

    If you can move the pedal in variable positions (like a volume or wah) then it is probably a potentiometer you are controller. Otherwise it is probably a switch.
  4. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    If you're talking about a wah or volume pedal, it's generally a potentiometer controlled by the sweep of the pedal, toe up turns an internal knob one way, and toe down turns it the other.

    If you're talking about the pedal on BOSS, Digitech, Ibanez and other pedals like that, open the battery compartment. You'll see a little black plastic switch that they push down.

    Just like the boxes they come in the switches come in different varieties.
  5. callofthebow


    Oct 19, 2003
    Orlando, FL
    if your amp has an effects loop it may look like this:

    Bass > Amp Effects send > Effects > Amp Effects return

    generally people like to put wahs and overdrives before their amp, and other modulation type pedals in the loop. But really theres no right way set in stone, just follow your ears.
  6. xan


    Sep 10, 2004
    Perth, Australia
    a good example of how an expression or volume pedal works is the TIP 3rd hand.


    in this link you will see the TIP attached to one of the variable controls on the red llama. the TIP when pressed forward or backward will rotate the pot just as if you were doing it with your fingers.