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Single effects.. what do I need?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by hvingsand, Feb 2, 2005.

  1. Ok... I know there is a lot of info about single pedals on these pages. But all of you don't really say what kind of music you play... So here is my attempt to get some advice:

    I play rock, mainly. Rock/powerpop/punk. (weezer, oasis, green day, jimmy eat world, ozma, muse, ash... etc) And I just got into effects for bass. I've been playing for over a year in my band now, without a single effect. Some songs do fine without, but some would get that little extra with a kickass effect...

    All I have now is a Big Muff Pi (russian). Just bougth it, so I haven't tried it yet. So I see there's a lot of different pedals out there... overdrive, distortion, compression, limiter, enhancer, tremolo, wahwah, phaser, flanger,octaver, delay, reverb... etc. :help: I know I don't need all of those... (and my wallet knows too)

    What would help me get the sound just right for playing my kind of music? (or do I relly need anything else than my big muff?) I can't afford buying all kind of effects, but some extra effects would be cool :hyper:

    I'll appreciate any suggestion!
  2. the low one

    the low one

    Feb 21, 2002
    The more I play, and I've been playing for 20 years, the more I come to the conclusion that I like the natural sound of the bass. Playing on my own all the efects sound great but with the band I tend to leave them alone alot of the time.

    Having said all that I do use OD octave and chorus so as you have the Big Muff I would say that an octave would be next, especially as you play rock it will enable you to create some nice low end growl with the OD. The BOSS OC2 can always be picked up quite cheaply and whilst it's not the bast it is used by many many pros.
  3. well, the music that you play doesn't really require many effects, but if you want to only get pedals that follow the music you play, i'd say get a compressor. that and the pi (distortion) are probably the two most used types of effects in those genres. of course unless you are just looking for something different, then get a wah pedal or an envelope filter like the dod FX25B. Delays are fun as well!
  4. xan


    Sep 10, 2004
    Perth, Australia
    if ur not sure about exactly what you want, get a multi fx. unless ur planning to play big gigs anytime soon this will suit you perfectly.

    depending on budget get a bass pod or boss me-50b... u will get a wide variety of sounds, decent quality effects, and they are cheap when compared to the cost of buying that many individual pedals.

    with a multi u can play around until u find the sound ur after..

    going by the bands that u mostly cover ur only going to need a bass driver, overdrive/distortion (partly covered by ur big muff), and a bass synth for ur muse songs (plug in baby, citizen erazed etc).
  5. The Nanny

    The Nanny

    Dec 23, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    For your kind of music, maybe a compressor...I'm happy with the Tech 21 bass compactor.
  7. As a rough guide stay clear of pedals aimed at guitars as most will suck the bass tone out as they arnt designed for bass. There are a few exceptions of course, but search for pedals made for bass guitar and watch out as some of them are bad as well.

    MXR make a nice octaver for bass, no good getting a cheap rubbish one as they will not track accurately or fast.

    The way i look at it is adding effects is the final flavour to your own bass guitar and amp tone, in other words it should compliment it and be a good addition. It shouldnt be the only thing that creates your personal tone ( in general ) however sometimes you will need a special sound or tone that only effects can provide. Lets face it we all lust after high end bass guitars and amps , why because they sound better and have the tone we are after. Dont get caught up trying to make a poor sound better with effects as it doesnt really work that way.

    I recently tried the Aphex Bass Exciter live and it made a noticable difference, however with some more eq tweeking on the amp i could get very close to it without the extra pedal.

    I like to have effects that you leave off for the majority of songs and just kick in a bit of effect to flavour, enhance or boost your tone.Probably thats why i am anti multi f/x as i hate the pre amps in them and all the extra baggage you often get.
  8. xan


    Sep 10, 2004
    Perth, Australia
    i upgraded my bass from an ibanez gsr100 to an sr400... i know it isnt exactly a high end model but ive noticed a huge tone difference and it has brightened up all my effects.
  9. I have an OLP MM-2... Will that make it more difficult for me to get good sounds by using effects? I really can't afford the MusicMan original.. :rollno:

    I know the sound of course will be better with an expensive bass, but does it really make that much difference?

    Anyway.. I'm gonna check out my new russian big muff pi tomorrow! :hyper: Anny tips? I'm especcially looking for something as close as possible to the "hysteria"-sound... (by muse.. of course!)
  10. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    Nope - ya'got no excuses. OLPs are great. If somethin's wrong, it's YOU.

    I too say: Compressor!

  11. The closest I got the Muse - Hysteria sound was distortion + octaver... this is on my multieffects pedal mind you... and I'm not sure exactly what Chris uses... have you seen his effects pedals... a bit more on the dollar intensive side :eyebrow:

    My hysteria sound is alot like the live version of hysteria... (I saw them live :hyper: )... which it feels is more distorted...

    Very slight reverb to add fullness to the sound
  12. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    Nah, you're fine. Just keep rockin'.
  13. FireAarro


    Aug 8, 2004
    OZMA~!!!\m/ (rip_)

    For that sort of music you don't really need any effects.
  14. basste


    Oct 8, 2003
    what you could do, like already said by Xan, is to buy a multieffect pedal. But the cheapest one (Zoom, Akg or other litlle multifx). But with the idea of just could try all effects type, and to select what you really need. Perhaps it will be a compressor and a distortion, but perhaps you will prefer an octaver, or a phaser. So, you got this little multieffetc for six months and you have the time to explore all what is contains (will which pretty much cover a lot of the effetcs you can find on the stomp boxes market to give you an idea)

    It's what i have done. After few month with a little Zoom BFX 708, I only had selected three effects, envelope filter, wha pedal, and octaver.
    And today, i only use a dunlop Wha 105Q pedal :hyper:

    and to second Xan, if after six month you see you need a lot of effects (more than 6 pedals) to satisfy all your needs, so go for a big multieffect (boss gt6-B, or other in that price range) and you will have a good quality in sound and you will can do all you want with :bassist:
  15. Ok... I have allready tried DigiTech BP200 and Boss GT-6B, and think they are cool, but not much use for my style...

    Anyway, I've done some serious ebaying, and here is what I got now:

    EHX Big Muff russian (fuzz)
    EBS MultiDrive (overdrive)
    Boss CS-3 (compressor)
    Boss OC-2 (octaver)
    and in addition: Boss TU-2 (tuner)

    The TU-2 would work as a power-supply for all Boss pedals, at least. Do you know if it will work with the EBS? And how about the Big muff? (First I'll have to buy something that converts the power from the adapter into the battery-circuit)

    Or will I ruin my non-Boss pedals if I try running them on "Boss-created" power?

    If you have any suggestions, please tell me... I haven't yet tried the 3 Boss pedals, and hardly the EHX and EBS, so any help will be appreciated.. (F.ex. will the compressor suck my tone? I'm also looking for an EBS-compressor, but don't want it if the Boss will work just fine)

    Also, in what order should I put them if I want them on a pedal-board?
  16. Tedintheshed

    Tedintheshed Banned

    Oct 8, 2004
    Columbus, Ohio

    My advice to you you would have been to spend some time at a GC testing pedals. Asking "what pedal is for me" is a lot asking "what underwear is for me". In the end, the choice comes down to personal preference and if the pedal is of decent quality, there are no wrong choices.

    Anyways, looking at your eBay selections you seem to have made some decent first picks. I think any bassists who is interested in distortion should own a Muff. It is a good pedal to help you find your bearings. You will at least be able to get a flavor for what certain pedal will sound like now.

    Many like the Mudrive, but unless people have a straight EBS line up on their board I seldom see it. I don't know why- probably becasue there are TONS of very specifically voiced pedals out there.

    The OC-2 is solid, but if you play too fast you may have tracking issues.

    The TU-2 is a good tuner. It wil power all "Boss style" pedals. While this type of power requirement is an industry standard, there are some that don't follow it. You can power non-Boss pedals as long as the voltage and polarity matches. Eventually, you will probably want to dump the TU-2 in favor of a power unit that provided isolated power. This will help cut down on noise created by current.

    Taste test these puppies. Some you may really like and other you may trade or sell. If you become a pedal addict, it will be never ending.

    Have fun with it, and find out what you like!

  17. bassman314

    bassman314 I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process...

    Mar 13, 2005
    Bay Area, CA
    I love the depth chorus and reverb add. I used to run phase and flange all over the place, but the more I've played, the more I love the natural sound.

    My main rig:

    Dunlop Crybaby 105Q Wah
    Electro Harmonix BassBalls Russian RI
    BOSS CEB-3 Chorus
    Morely Volume
    Fender Spring Reverb

    Chorus and Reverb are on all of the time. I use Wah and BassBalls for color. I'm adding an EHX Hot Tubes Overdrive as well.

    The best thing to do is go to a shop and try stuff out. Listen to the sound you get and decide if you like it, and you will use it.
  18. bassman314

    bassman314 I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process...

    Mar 13, 2005
    Bay Area, CA
    Power is power. As long as all the pedals are 9V and use positive-tip barrel adapters, you're good. You'll need an adapter for the Big Muff. I don't have experience with EBS, but I'd assume they use the same as BOSS.

    For awhile I ran all of my pedals (except the reverb, which requires 120-VAC) off of my TU-2.

    One caveat is check the manuals for all of these pedals. Make sure your total current draw (rated in mA or milliamps) is less than the output of the adapter you plug into the TU-2. I believe the TU-2's internal circuitry can handle relaying up to 200 mA, which is about 5-6 pedals, depending on their current draw.

    I don't use my TU-2 as a power relay anymore. I got a Godlyke Power-all, which does more than enough for my needs, and includes the adapters for EHX, Line-6, and for pedals that have a 9-volt battery connector-only.

    This is mainly up to your taste. Remember that effects later in the signal chain will stack on those preceding it.

    If this was my rig, I would probably go:

    Bass --> TU-2 --> CS-3 --> OC-2 --> Multi-Drive --> Big Muff --> Amp
  19. Will I really get problems by using the TU-2 as power-unit? :bawl:

    I just bought it because I wanted a smart solution to the powering-problems... Maybe I just bought myself a new problem!

    If I run, say 5 pedals, powered by the TU-2, will that really make so much noise that it's a problem? Or is it barely noticable, but irritating if you're in a studio or something?

    I play mostly live, and the music is pretty noisy anyway :bassist:
  20. bassman314

    bassman314 I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process...

    Mar 13, 2005
    Bay Area, CA
    naaaaah... you shouldn't have any problems at all..

    let me clarify.

    the adapter has a power limitation on it. Look on the back of it, and you should see a spec that says an output of "9v 200mA" or something to that effect. the number in mA (could be 200, 400, 800, 200... etc..) is the total current draw the adapter can handle. it won't blow up if you exceed it, it will simply just not work.

    Think of it like a pipe pumping water. Only so much water can be forced through the pipe at a time.

    All of your pedals have a current draw. look in the manuals for this figure. I have the EHX BB RI, and I know it doesn't come with a manual, but it also doens't have a huge draaw, either.

    Add up these values, and that's your total current draw on the system. If the total amount of current draw is greater than what the adapter can provide, you'll have problems.

    Also, I believe the circuitry of the TU-2 has a limit as to the max it can handle as a relay. check on the sticker near the power jacks.

    I hope this clarifies.