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rack effects?!?!

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Muttluk, Jul 21, 2000.

  1. i have always been really confused about rack effects. what i dont understand is how you use them. are there foot switches or somthign for them? is that how they work? cause i was wondering why someone would want a phraser or some other effect on the whole time or somthing. it jsut made no sence to me. somone please explain!
  2. Licketysplit


    Mar 15, 2000
    You can by various midi foot controllers and such for the rack effects. Depending on what you buy you could have the tightest sweetest rig, or the sh!ttiest sound in the world. Too complicatedfor me to understand much less explain. Hope I helped a little.

  3. that kinda helps, cause like i see the logic in Rack effects...
    -easyer to move then numerous pedals.
    -mounted with your head, so you can carry it all in one trip
    -supposidly better quality effects

    now, what i dont understand, is why somone would need somthing left on the whole time. and even if there are foot switches, wouldnt it be easyer to get a digitech pedal board thing? isnt that just a lot easyer? also, for a studio inviorment, i know you want as little noise as possible, so how does rack effects come in then. a guy i know has a studio, and has rack effects set up there. and i see zero foot switches for htem.
  4. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Mullica Hill, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    I use all rack effects. The way it works is this:

    My preamp is an ADA MB1. It has two effects loops built in. It also has 100+ "patches" that I can program to sound a certain way (programmable EQ, built-in chorus and compression with adjustable settings, etc.)

    The effects loops on the preamp can be programmed per patch to be on or off. So, for instance, patch 001 might be a flat EQ, no chorus, no compression, etc., with both effects loops inactive. So basically, regardless of settings, my effects units aren't in the signal chain.

    Patch 002, however, has a "scooped" EQ, light chorus, and some compression. In addition, I want to add a little low bottom to the sound with my rack-mounted subharmonic synthesizer (like an octaver, only different.) So for patch 002 I also have it set to use effects loop "A," which is the one that my subharmonic synth is hooked up to.

    My MIDI floor pedal controls which patches I choose, so when I step on one button it brings up patch 001, and on another it brings up patch 002. Bingo! With one step, I switch from a flat, clean patch to a slapper's delight with subsonic low end.

    To make things more complicated, the effect I have in effects loop "B" (a filter effect) is ALSO Midi controllable, and has 99 presets. So patch 003 on the preamp might be an exact duplicate of patch 001, only with the effects loop "B" active. So the third button on my MIDI pedal sets patch 003 on the preamp, and patch #50 on the filter at the same time, which happens to be my "Bootsy" sound. So now I've got a duplicate of patch 001, but with a cool filter like a Mu-tron.

    Since patch 003 works so well with the filter, I can re-use patch 003 -- have button 4 on the pedal select 003 on the preamp, just like button 3 -- but select patch #48 on the filter (instead of #50), which is a cool filter sweep sound.

    So I'm essentially able to control each unit independently, and have an amazing range of sounds (pre-programmed, of course.) Confused yet? It took a while to get the hang of it. And I won't even try to explain the rig I helped my guitarist design. It uses two separate preamps and all sorts of MIDI trickery.

    As for the cats in the studio - that's a whole different game. Most studios don't record effects to tape until mixdown (excepting compression, and sometimes light verb.) They have all sorts of complex routing and special loops and patch bays to send the right signals through the right effects.

    I design my rig purely for live performance. I need it to be able to turn on a dime at a moment's notice, and I'm very pleased with the range and quality of sounds. I have rarely used pedals - in fact I only ever owned one, and wish I had it back. It was a Peavey Bi-Amp Bass Chorus pedal, and it is (IMHO) the best sounding bass chorus I ever heard. I shouldn't have gotten rid of it.

    Hope I didn't confuse you too much. smile.

    Mark Gollihur
    Bassist, Second Story

    [This message has been edited by sixandeightstringer (edited July 28, 2000).]

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