Sansamp in his "tube flavour" aspect: programmable or not?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by michele, Nov 25, 2005.

  1. michele


    Apr 2, 2004
    I'm thinking about buying a Sansamp Bass Driver. A couple of months ago I resolved my SS vs Tube dilemma buying a TF550 amp.
    Let me say a couple of things first:
    1) I needed my amp to be powerful, very warm, and lightweight: that's why at the end I went with the Thunderfunk. Perfect choice BTW.
    2) I never looked at the Thunderfunk like a surrogate of a tube amp. Before buying it I already knew that this amp has the quickness of a SS and doesn't distort: and that's good for me. So, no room for the "yeah...but...tubes are tubes" guys.
    That said, there are certain musical situations where I think I'll need the saturated tubes distortion in my sonic palette. That's why I'm thinking at the Sansamp.
    Again, I know that the Sansamp isn't an old SVT or etc.etc. (put your favourite all tube amp here) but a lot of you can confirm here that it could emulate that sound in a very, very good way.
    So, at the end, that's the question: why should I prefere the programmable Sansamp over the non-programmable one? 80% of my sonic needs are covered by the TF and the "driven tube sound" by the Sansamp could cover the rest ... or maybe could I found interesting to have at my feet the TF sound (when the Sansamp isn't engaged, of course) plus three "different flavoured" tube sounds?
    In other words, how many of you have found more than one useful tube distortion setting on the Sansamp so to feel the necessity of the programmable one? I'm focusing on the tube distortion emulation aspect of the Sansamp because of my needs: I don't slap at all but I can easily figure out that slappers found very useful the programmable Sansamp ...
  2. Lowtonejoe

    Lowtonejoe Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2004
    Pasco, WA
    /digs in pocket for $.02

    I would get the BDDI.

    It seems that the programmable one would be a PITA. Shoot, if I wanted a pedal that big I would buy a complete floor unit (o.k. I am looking at getting one.)

    Plus the 'double tap to program' thing scares me. I don't know about you but sometimes my feet stutter. In a gig that could be a catastrophe.

    I used to own a BDDI and I thought it was a great unit. It was the old version so I sold it to force myself to get the new version (switchable output level). Well, I haven't gotten around to it yet but one of these days I will replace it!


  3. Andrew Jones

    Andrew Jones Inactive

    Feb 28, 2001
    Northampton Mass
    Absalutle I have A walter woods and I use a sansamp all the timewhen I need to "brown" things up!

  4. westland

    westland Supporting Member

    I have the programmable BDDI ... I actually wanted the non-programmable for the reasons you state (I have a TFB550 too) but the stores here only had the programmable (and anyway, the price here was the same on both, about US$200)

    Having purchased it, I really like the programmable form factor much more, and the switches are worth it. First it sits flat on the floor, where as the non-P box has too many knobs in fragile places to place on the floor. Second, if you have more than one bass, you need more than one setting. I have been playing my Variax 700 through it, and I use the stock 'tube' setting for the Fender Jazz, and the 'high-top' setting for the acoustic bass.

    The programming is idiot proof, and the 'lazy pot' feature is brilliant. I've never had trouble mistaking the double tap for a single. The switches are high quality and it just all works very well

  5. I have the first switch set as a bassy, ultra thick sound with loads of OD, which i use for when I need to sound massive, and the second as a more trebley, clean yet still quite tubey sound (my main sound). Still fiddling with the 3rd switch (only had it for a week), currently using it as a mute. I'd suggest getting the programmable so you atleast have the option of other sounds.

    Also, I just have to say that this pedal is amazing. Makes my GK rig sound twice as good.
  6. michele


    Apr 2, 2004
    Thanks guys!
    Westland, you should agree with me that the TF550 has a great "tubey" voice. What do you think the Sansamp add to it?
  7. BassyBill

    BassyBill Still here Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    +1 for the programmable version here. To me, the ability to store three different patches and switch easily between them is well worth the extra cash and the bigger case doesn't bother me at all.
  8. gillento


    Oct 15, 2005
    Luxembourg, Europe
    Nordstrand pickups
    +1 for the programmable one. For all the reasons Westland stated!!
  9. timmyc


    Nov 29, 2005
    It is not as big as you may think, i wasnt sure because of buying over the net but it only uses up a bit more space then my big muff.

  10. Cantstandsya

    Cantstandsya Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2001
    Fontana, CA
    Do you have any soundclips through your GK rig ?I'm trying to decide between the Fulltone Bassdrive and the programmable Sansamp BDDI. I used to have a Sansamp a long time ago and have had G.A.S. for one ever since I sold it.It's just been so long that I don't remember how overdriven it can get.I guess i'm looking for more of a Tubescreamer type overdrive, not as extreme as the MXR M-80 or a Big Muff but still pretty gainy.Suggestions?
  11. Sorry man, no clips. The OD is pretty weak, but it breathes life into the distortions I've tried with it. If you are purely looking for an OD, you might want to look elsewhere, but as you probably know having owned one in the past, the BDDI's strengths are in the tones its capable of.
  12. Cantstandsya

    Cantstandsya Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2001
    Fontana, CA
    I wonder if I could overdrive the BDDI by feeding it a clean boost with my Punch Factory or Boss GE7-B............