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Question about "effects loop"

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Special_Ed, Feb 19, 2005.

  1. Special_Ed


    Oct 3, 2004
    Today I decided to plug my multi effects pedal into the "effects loop, power amp in" plug. I noticed a more clear tone coming out of the amp, and that the amp's EQ does not work, but the EQ is worked from the pedal.

    I have also noticed the amp can get a lot louder then before.

    What exactly have I done? Have I turned my pedal into my pre/power amp? If so is it danergous to crank the volume knob up on my effects pedal?
  2. Yah, it sounds to me like you've plugged your pedal into the poweramp in jack, which in all likelihood bypasses the preamp on the head. Note that this is different than the effects loop return.

    Cranking the volume level on the pedal to the point that you hear distortion in your signal probably isn't a great idea, but it's not something you should worry about too much. I'm assuming your poweramp section has a clip LED? Just back off the volume if this is flashing.
  3. Special_Ed


    Oct 3, 2004
    Unfortunatly, these rumble 25s dont have a clip LED. One of the major drawbacks.

    Thanks for the reply.
  4. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    most effects loops are post eq, pre master volume. when you plug into the effects return the normal signal flow from the preamp and eq to the master volume (and ultimately the poweramp section of the head) is interrupted and whatever signal is plugged into the effets return is sent to the master volume/poweramp instead. this is normally done with the preamp.eq signal being taken from the effects send, routed thru effects, and sent back via the effects return.

    what you did is this...............by plugging your bass into your effects and then directly into the effects return of your head you bypassed the preamp and eq of the head entirely and your effects unit is now operating as the preamp. if the amp is now louder that's becasue the signal coming from your effects unit is "hotter" than the post eq signal inside your head. you won't hurt your amp doing this. your poweramp will clip at exactly the same volume as it would if you were using the head's internal preamp.

    the thing to find out is if you prefer the sound of the amp that way, or with the amp's own preamp. running the amp's effect send to the input of your effects unit and running the output of the effects unit to the effects return of the amp would be the "normal" way of using the loop. however, your effects unit is probably optimized for the low level input signal of your bass, and the higher gain input from the effedts send will probably distort it. rack mounted effects are generally optimized for the hotter line level signals of effects loops.
  5. Special_Ed


    Oct 3, 2004

    Thanks Ivan. :cool: