TC Electronic Nova System BASS Users Club

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by rtav, Apr 10, 2018.

  1. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Hey TB-land!

    Welcome to the Talkbass TC Nova System BASS Users Club!

    TC Electronic introduced the Nova System (NS) analog multieffect unit a few years ago to the guitar-world, but bassists soon discovered it’s fantastic sound quality and began using them as well.

    There are incredible analog (overdrive and distortion) and digital effects from legendary TC modulation (chorus, phaser, Flanger s, etc.), pitch (detune, octavers, etc.), compression, reverb, boost, parametric eq, Gates, delays and all in one amazing unit.

    In general some things could have been better (esp switching without an external switch unit, which can be clunky), the I nability to use overdrive effects when the unit is in an effects loop (a marketing decision by TC).

    For bassists, the built-in tuner can’t detect open strings below 421hz (12th fret harmonics work great as long as you’re intimated properly and external tuners are cheap), and bassists have been generally treated as second class.

    But at about $200 used with real effects that don’t sound like plastic toys it can’t be beat.

    So this club exists for BASS NS users to share info, settings and experiences with the NS, and maybe even build a bit of a bigger user base among us low-enders.

    So if you are using a TC Nova System with your bass, sign up and let’s share some info.

    I’ll be adding some stuff later tonight, but I’ll take number 1.

    Using a NS with a G-Switch
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2018
    BrentSimons likes this.
  2. sbergman123


    Mar 1, 2018
    Georgia USA
    I am still playing with this thing as well. The tuner does suck, but that is easily remedied with a dedicated tuner. The effects are "NO SUCK" as stated previously - true TC analog pedals with digital settings. The famous TC Electronics tap/tempo delay, Drive, EQ, Compressor/Limiter, Mod, Pitch Reverb, a noise gate and with the G switch u r not limited to only using a subset of these effects. All in a multi-stomp box for around $200! It works for me!
    rtav and BrentSimons like this.
  3. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    I’ll throw my moreorless always on overdrive settings or my main basses:

    Gain: 4
    Tone: 85
    Level: 2db
    Boost: 0db

    It’s subtle but can get very aggressive when pushed. I’ll post my compressor settings soon (and overall level settings), but the comp is always on (the overdrive isn’t, it’s just one of the effect settings on my default bank/custom preset).

    One thing I’ve noticed is that the input levels are hot, but they are always hot on my Yamaha basses (I can clip my old Markbass pedals with the input gain on zero directly out straight into the pedal input lol... really). I wished there was a way to dial back the input gain on the system levels but I’ve only found ways to increase it above 0db and nothing below that.

    OTOH my fretless bass has quieter output and works great with the NS input levels at zero, and bc there is such disparity in the output levels of my basses I have to set independent levels for my main and my fretless basses with different patches for each bass (some patches I’ve configured are specifically for fretted and some for fretless). It’s no biggie.

    My main basses with the hot output are Yamaha RBXJM2’s with DR Lo-Riders (130 B string) and my much lower output level fretless is a Carvin 6 string unlined greenburst stunner with DR Black Beauty strings (125s on the B). Both run direct into the Nova System.

    Who’s next? Let’s see what works for you and what gear your using with your Noca System!
  4. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    OK - I've tweaked the overdrive a bit (too much input, getting frequent clipping warnings):

    Gain - 5
    Tone - 76%
    Level - -5db
    Boost - 4db

    Sounds amazing.

    My eq is set as:
    Freq1 - 86.6 Hz
    Gain1 - 7db
    Width - 1.6

    Freq2 - 282 Hz
    Gain2 - 7db
    Width - 1.6

    Freq3 - 917 Hz
    Gain3 - 7db
    Width - 1.6

    I'm using a Yamaha RBXJM2 through the Nova System/G-Switch into a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2. Wow!
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2018
  5. TCNova system user here! I’d like to join the club, please. Thank you.
    rtav likes this.
  6. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Welcome aboard - you're number 2!
  7. Thank you!
  8. I love my Nova System. Any mood I happen to be in, I can dial up a sound to compliment...amazing piece of equipment. I’m really surprised that more bassists aren’t using them! Guitarists swear by them....
    rtav likes this.
  9. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Thought I’d post my pedalboard setup. It’s basically a split brained setup.

    Signal comes from my bass to the Pitchblack then to the Radial Twin City BonesX ABY with phase switch. There it splits into an affected path and an unaffected path to keep low end without giving up effects.

    One signal leaves the ABY and goes to the mixer and out dual mono to the Furman right/left outputs then one channel goes to one amp andvthe other goes to another amp (again, dual mono).

    The other signal leaves the ABY and goes to the Nova System, where it gets affected, eq’d, etc., split stereo and sent out r/l to channels 1 and 2 in my mixer, then out dual mono to the Furman then the amps.

    Using the mixer I can blend the single unaffected signal with the 2 affected ones tailoring it any way I want.

    It’s a tone machine.

    03CAC986-C5AA-4B6F-8309-D6ADF13E1772.jpeg 7238E183-E374-44E9-85DE-4456A5F71F7C.jpeg
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2018
    RodneyMac and ccouch7 like this.
  10. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    I thought I’d put this here.

    It’s my YouTube bass cover of Dream Theaters “The Dance of Eternity” featuring my Nova System.

    Give it a listen!

  11. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Well, I'm working on "Instrumedley" and getting close to being finished, but a funny thing happened on the way there. I was working on it and realized I needed to revisit "Erotomania." As I got into it I realized I should do a music vid. I'm using my split brained pedal board with my TC Nova System supplying the effects and another signal of the pure bass tone combined and blended, so the tone is much more aggressive than John Myung's, with plenty of growl and deep punch. I hope you like it, listen to some other bass covers on my Youtube Channel, leave a thumb's up or comment. Peace out and STAY LOW my friends!

  12. Churchie5013


    Jul 4, 2013
  13. Churchie5013


    Jul 4, 2013
    Hey rtav

    Followed you over from the TC Electronic forum.

    Have set up my overdrive and eq similar to you and I like the boost and tone, but need to try it out in the studio as my windows are rattling at home.

    Do you use the noise gate? I have it set to:

    Thres -40db Damp 50db speed 200/s but have no idea if this is effective?

    Also I have some patches that I'm trying out, let me know if you're interested...
  14. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL

    Thanks for responding. I don't use the gate (although I thought about it recently), just fiddle with the volume settings quite a bit.

    I have my Nova System setup on the B channel of my signal (the A channel is my "pure" bass sound with no effects or eq and is about 30% louder than my B channel.)

    I have a G-Switch that allows me to moreorless switch banks and so on easily, but it's still a bit unresponsive at times.

    In bank 0 I have a zero effects clean patch in channel 0, in channel 1 I have my basic bass sound - which is overdrive, compression, and some chorus. Here are the settings:

    Comp - Thresh: -13 db
    Ratio 1.3:1
    Atack 2.0ms
    Release 50ms
    Level -2db

    Drive - Overdrive
    Gain 7
    Tone - 86%
    Level -3db
    Boost 6db

    Mod - Chorus
    Speed .173ms
    Tempo Disbl
    Depth 84%
    b High Cut 3.98k
    Delay 14.7ms
    Mix 60%

    EQ - On
    Freq1 91.7hz
    Gain1 7db
    Width 1.6db
    Freq2 772hz
    Gain2 7db
    Width 1.6
    Freq3 1.45k
    Gain3 8db
    Width 1.6

    This is my "always on" affected tone. I blend it with my clean signal and blend them until it's the mix I want. When recording, I send the signal to my Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 and Gatageband - no eq from Garageband.

    The sound is found in the video for "Erotomania" above and my newest cover of "Instrumedley" below:

    Last edited: Dec 22, 2018
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  15. Churchie5013


    Jul 4, 2013
    Excellent fretwork!
    rtav likes this.
  16. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
  17. madmaskbass


    Apr 29, 2008
    Thought I would bump this thread and register my interest. Years ago my guitar player had the gmajor and the effects in the system were truly excellent. I have been searching seriously for a while now for a decent effects unit that has a few things that interest me. They include:

    1. Being midi controllable as I have a Disaster area programmable controller that is going to be the brains of my board
    2. not suck tone
    3. have the ability for deep tweaking as I do really love playing with sounds in depth
    4. Not be hugely expensive because I am pushing the love of my dearest already with all the huge amounts of gear I have bought the in the past few years.
    5. Be computer programmable

    Well I really think that I have found what I am looking for here! Number 5 seems like it could be an issue but only minor compared to the others... I currently have a Boss Gt1-b which is a great unit, it really is but as so many know, I can feel the tone suck. I can get really decent sounds that I enjoy out of it but there is just something there that really isn't there when I dont have it all my gear (high quality cans/ monitors/cab). Also the boss cannot be controlled via midi. My ultimate plan is to have programmed presets with the new Darkglass Alpha Omgea 900 controlled via midi that can tweak the distortion, cab sim and comp. Then on top for each of those settings have a few layers of preset effects (e.g clean channel -delay, chorus...slight dirt- pitch or phase etc)

    I would truly love to run a Nemesis delay and a Eventide H9 max on my board but even used that is well over $1200 and I am still new to the effects world. I have dirt and compression well and truly covered with all my darkglass goodies but wanted a flexible system for effects rather than dedicated stompoxes at this stage as I still am unsure of what exactly I will use the most. So for around $300 oz this sounds like it could be my knight.

    Anyway I'll get one very soon and post my board I really hope that my feeling about this unit is right.

    Cheers guys
    RodneyMac and rtav like this.
  18. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Very cool!

    I paid $200 for mine with the G Switch from, and there are probably some deals there now.

    I’m looking to change up my split-brained board to a threeway one, with a TC Nova channel, an unaffected channel and a Roland GR-55 channel.

    It should be crazy lol.

    My Nova System sounds great. I’ve been using it on nearly everything to give it the right amount of effect, usually a chorus + something to give it a nice subtle shimmer.
    RodneyMac likes this.
  19. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Here’s a recording I made this past Saturday with it.

    It’s Liquid Tension Experiments “Paradigm Shift,” featuring Tony Levi on bass.

    This song uses 3 patches - one default aggressive tone, second is heavily overdriven, the third is heavily flanged, reverb’d, detuned with the highs muted, and the third is a heavy, doubled reverb intense deep tone - then back to the default.

    The Nova System does this perfectly!

    Last edited: Apr 3, 2019
    RodneyMac and madmaskbass like this.
  20. madmaskbass


    Apr 29, 2008
    This is an awesome display of what the unit can do! Excellent playing and sound man.

    I actually found a deal last night on one actually.. This one has the known but HOPEFULLY fixable freezing issue for $50 oz lol. The next cheapest in the country is $350. So heres to my new rabbit hole progect but your vid keeps me motivated

    rtav likes this.
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    Primary TB Assistant

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