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Taming the OC-2

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by warwick.hoy, Mar 16, 2009.


  1. warwick.hoy

    warwick.hoy

    Aug 20, 2006
    Spokane, WA.
    Beta Tester: Source Audio.
    Okay the postman left me this about thirty minutes ago. :hyper:

    DSCN1994.

    Then I plugged it in. :crying:

    The tracking issues I feared that I would have came true.

    Here is a recording.

    http://soundclick.com/share?songid=7431325

    Pretty gnarly there huh?

    Note that I'm playing single notes and scales. I tried the OC-2 with a Battery and from a lead off of the G-Bus-8 on my Gator Pedal Tote. No other effects in the signal path. Bass = Warwick Thumb BO 5 string in active mode. Tried it in passive mode and got the similar results. Octave 2 all the way off, Octave at about 2'o'clock. Direct level all the way off. I tried different settings and couldn't alleviate the issue.

    Is there something wrong with this pedal or are these typical tracking issues because the bass is so hot? Also note the pedal is dated at 1982 according to the serial #.

    I'm excited to have the pedal and would repair it if it is possible. Any comments are greatly appreciated. In the meantime I'm going to throw some compression before it to see if that helps.
     
  2. RickenBoogie

    RickenBoogie

    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    Direct level OFF? That could be part of your trouble right there.
     
  3. warwick.hoy

    warwick.hoy

    Aug 20, 2006
    Spokane, WA.
    Beta Tester: Source Audio.
    Still getting issues with the Direct Level pegged.

    Check it:

    http://soundclick.com/share?songid=7431460

    Note that this is after a Boss LMB-3 Limiter.

    I am noticing that on fast riffy type runs there are no issues so perhaps its just a matter of me playing the pedal as opposed to just using it as a toy.
     
  4. kevteop

    kevteop

    Feb 12, 2008
    York, UK
    My main bass is a Thumb with stock MEC circuitry/pups and I don't have problems like that with tracking on my OC-2. It doesn't sound like a hot output issue, weak output maybe but if you know your bass drives other tracking pedals OK then you can rule that out.

    Don't expect it to deal with anything below your B on the A string especially well, but it shouldn't be breaking up on those upper notes. At first I thought maybe you've got a bit of a dead spot during that scale you were playing, but if it was a dead spot it would just die out and not come back, and it's stuttering. Very weird.

    I don't think pre-compression is going to help. Because you've soloed the OC-2 sound I can't tell what your technique or original bass tone is like - try soloing the front pup and picking further towards the neck, see if that helps. If you have lots of treble dialled in and a rattly action that might be causing problems, or if you pick especially hard and cause fret noise that way, but I can't imagine you're doing that from the stuff you were playing.

    Hope it's not a sick OC-2. :(
     
  5. kevteop

    kevteop

    Feb 12, 2008
    York, UK
    Ah. Just listened to the clip with the direct level up. You've got a bit of a dead spot on your G string at the 8th fret. Bass flaw, not pedal flaw.

    The OC-2 is the best dead spot finder I've ever owned.
     
  6. ModuMan

    ModuMan How many is too many? Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2007
    Bristol, CT #19
    I have an OC-2 that I used in college and haven't played since... I was thinking about hauling it out again.

    Listening to those samples I think that mine did the same thing. The initial note is fine but after letting it sustain it falls apart. Probably why I stopped using it.
     
  7. warwick.hoy

    warwick.hoy

    Aug 20, 2006
    Spokane, WA.
    Beta Tester: Source Audio.
    HMMM...I think you maybe onto something. I also haven't changed the battery on my bass in about 8 months of constant rehearsing and gigging....

    EDIT: I seem to have similar tracking issues with a guitar version of the BSW.
     
  8. kevteop

    kevteop

    Feb 12, 2008
    York, UK
    It's not the battery, it's the bass. That's the most common spot on a bass neck to find a dead spot. Most basses have one somewhere between frets 7 and 9 on the G.
     
  9. warwick.hoy

    warwick.hoy

    Aug 20, 2006
    Spokane, WA.
    Beta Tester: Source Audio.
    You mentioned low output which led me to think dying battery. For the record I'm not discounting a dead spot :).

    Is there a way to fix that dead spot BTW; setup, intonation, relief? Or does that just move the dead spot elsewhere?
     
  10. kevteop

    kevteop

    Feb 12, 2008
    York, UK
    No. :(

    Both my basses suck around the same spot - a Stingray f/less and a '91 Thumb neck-thru. The Stingray is worse.

    It sounds like you're getting off pretty lightly to be honest, if my experience counts for anything.

    Edit: I've heard changing the mass of the bass can have some effect - that old bell brass headstock attachment thing they used to sell in magazines in the '90s was supposed to have some effect on dead spots but was mainly intended to increase sustain IIRC, but I never tried one and they were only sold (IIRC) for Fender-shaped headstocks. And they probably produce shocking neck-dive.

    If you have a workshop, maybe try playing your bass with the headstock locked in a vice, see if that moves the dead spot at all. Don't tighten it too much though. ;)
     
  11. The Lurker

    The Lurker

    Aug 16, 2002
    Ankh-Morpork
    +1. I found the same with mine.
     
  12. JohnDavisNYC

    JohnDavisNYC

    Jan 11, 2008
    Brooklyn, NY
    Endorsing Artist: Aguilar, D'Addario
    bad technique! the OC2 is the best bad technique finder, as well as dead spot finder.

    change the battery in your bass, pay extra close attention to string muting (the ones you're NOT playing...) and all those tracking issues will go away!

    not trying to be patronizing, but seriously, the tracking on the OC2 is really great as long as you play cleanly.

    john
     
  13. kevteop

    kevteop

    Feb 12, 2008
    York, UK
    I bet you your Fodera it's a dead spot on his Warwick. :p

    Do you not have a bass that the OC-2 struggles to track somewhere between frets 7 and 9 on the G? I need to take you the next time I go bass shopping.
     
  14. GDarwin

    GDarwin

    Mar 8, 2009
    Newcastle
    hmm
     
  15. Chris Ramlar

    Chris Ramlar

    Feb 8, 2006
    Mexico
    I f......g hate dead spotsss
     
  16. warwick.hoy

    warwick.hoy

    Aug 20, 2006
    Spokane, WA.
    Beta Tester: Source Audio.
    Great....now I feel....uh.....inadequate. :atoz:

    I've come to accept the OC-2 actually. Like I said on fast runs it sounds great. I'll just have to play to the pedal and challenge myself with it. I'm up for it.

    Those scales were sloppy but I recorded them on the fly. My bad.
     
  17. it will glitch if let notes sustain. in my experience.
     
  18. JohnDavisNYC

    JohnDavisNYC

    Jan 11, 2008
    Brooklyn, NY
    Endorsing Artist: Aguilar, D'Addario
    oh yeah, all my basses have a dead spot somewhere on the g string. the fodera it is Eb, jazz bass is C, but i don't think that my gibson ripper has a dead spot... at least i haven't found it yet.

    the dead spots do that glitchy thing, jumping octaves... but if you have a good strong signal, all other notes should have plenty of clean, non-glitchy sustain.

    if the OP was talking ONLY about the dead spots, then i mis-understood... i just listened to the clip again and it sounds to me like possibly the open B string is ringing ever so slightly? i had to modify my right hand muting when i switched to playing 5 string with pedals, because the tendency of the low B to ring when you are playing on the higher strings can create tracking issues.

    the technique thing wasn't a dig, what i meant by that was that playing through the OC2 will show you a bunch of places in your technique where it's not quite clean enough, because with really clean technique, the tracking is perfect (except for dead spots) and figuring out what about your technique is making it glitch will ultimately help your playing with out the pedal, too.

    john
     
  19. dannybuoy

    dannybuoy

    Aug 3, 2005
    England
    Also, if yours is an older one that takes the ACA power supply, it expects a 12v power supply... UNLESS you're daisy chaining it with other 9v pedals when all of a sudden it works magically at 9v (I don't fully understand why but it's something to do with them all sharing the same ground, there have been threads about this issue).

    So if it's the only pedal you were using it could've been underpowered. Oh, and nothing wrong with having the dry all the way off and playing the -1 octave soloed - it sounds nice and synthy, although not very loud for me even with the -1oct knob cranked.
     
  20. warwick.hoy

    warwick.hoy

    Aug 20, 2006
    Spokane, WA.
    Beta Tester: Source Audio.
    No Worries. I recorded those quickly while sitting down which is a little awkward for me. Also the quarters are a little cramped around my computer. To the last bolded text...agreed, and very beneficial.

    The back says it wants the ACA-100 adapter.

    http://www.bossarea.com/other/aca.asp

    That synthy sound was what I was looking for....although I like how it sounds with the level pegged as well. I could see why some guys have two.
     

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