1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Very short delay times as tone thickener?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by 2010P, May 12, 2018.

  1. 2010P

    2010P Banned

    May 13, 2017
    Excuse my naivete as this might be something very old hat, but the other day I pulled out an old DD-3 to see what delay does with my bass.

    I stumbled onto a setting that was almost imperceptable in terms of delay, but huge to thicken my tone.

    I simply ran a 200ms delay and put in on lowest feedback and very little effect volume. It gave me a slight slapback that ventured into really light and short reverb, but without any of the smear associated with reverb. And in a mix you can't hear the delay, but the notes seem to pop more. I find myself unable to turn it off.

    Anybody ever try something similar?
  2. PunkRocker33133

    PunkRocker33133 Supporting Member

    Feb 11, 2008
    Northern VA
    This is a pretty common use of short delay. I use a similar thing with analog and a bit of modulation for leads on guitar. It was a pretty common trick in the 50’s and 60’s for country slapback.
  3. Blaargh


    Apr 4, 2016
    Yup. I got a Deluxe Memory Man (with the cool old-school housing), and have been using it to thicken and soften the digital octave up of my Whammy, which sounds fairly nasal on it's own. The modulation and feedback are for bonus eeriness.
    PunkRocker33133 likes this.
  4. Mosfed


    Apr 21, 2013
    Chamonix Mont-Blanc
    Partner - CCP Pedals
    When I hear short delay, I tend to think reverb and while reverb does work to thicken up Guitar I usually feel like it kinda kills my fundamental on bass.
  5. 2010P

    2010P Banned

    May 13, 2017
    The shortness I am referring to is 200ms, which is a little slower than reverb territory. It's more like a slapback that I lower the volume on to just above perceptable. It just seems to thicken everything up. But I agree, reverb territories muddy things up greatly which is why I don't use it.
  6. 3wavylines

    3wavylines Supporting Member

    Mar 9, 2007
    Yes, recently I was experimenting with using a Carbon Copy to add some delay to thicken up the sound of my bass. I had it set to a very short delay, shorter than slapback, more like doubling. And setting the mix so the echo was barely noticeable. You could really only tell it was there by turning off the effect.

    I also had the mod button engaged to thicken it up a little bit more.

    I have tried dirt, chorus, and other ways of trying to thicken up the notes. I like the short delay because it is less obvious than chorus and doesn’t have the compression that dirt has.

    I’m still not sure if I am going to end up using it, but I was surprised that I would find delay useful on a bass at all.
    humboldtharris likes this.
  7. Rev J

    Rev J

    Jun 14, 2012
    Berkeley, Ca.
    Andrew Levy from The Brand New Heavies toneprint on the flashback delay is based on this.

    Rev J
    tfer likes this.
  8. tfer


    Jan 1, 2014
    If you increase the predelay, you can use reverb without affecting the fundamental.
  9. TuneSalad666

    TuneSalad666 Banned

    Mar 1, 2018

    Forgot the names but there are pedals on the market specifically with this purposes that uses a very short delay as mean to thicken your tone or emulate two instruments playing unison.
  10. dannybuoy


    Aug 3, 2005
    I have a TC Mimiq, essentially a stereo delay where the time drifts slightly to emulate double tracking. I've only used it into headphones, where it sounds great in stereo, but mixed mono I feel it has a negative impact on the tone due to all the comb filtering going on.

    There is a Keeley 30ms pedal that does a similar job too.
  11. rratajski

    rratajski Commercial User

    Jul 1, 2008
    Mount Laurel, NJ
    We employ this on our Blast Furnace. The left momentary footswitch is a short-timed delay to thicken things up. It works!
  12. 2010P

    2010P Banned

    May 13, 2017
    Cool to see I stumbled on a tone recipe that has some deep roots already.
  13. matty1039


    Oct 26, 2015
    New Orleans
    I use some form of it all the time to add a little depth. I use a Zoom MS-60B so I have a lot of options, but I usually use the room, tiled room or chamber effects to whatever patch I'm making.
  14. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

  15. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    If you like a hint of reverb, but you play bass, a delay is a far better way to get that sound.

    And if you put a delay south of a squeaky clean digital effect and set it to a super short delay (50ms or less) you can warm up the sound very effectively and make it sound far more analog.

    Delay is one of the most versatile effects out there when it comes to bass. I prefer to use delay sparingly. With a light touch on the settings you can get some really nice tones. So experiment.
  16. Skybone


    Jun 20, 2016
    Must admit I've tried it a few times in the past, but never found a delay I was happy with. I'll stick to using reverb.
  17. BassBrass


    Jul 6, 2009
    Boston MA
    From 1989 to 1995 or so I used a double amp setup with analog delay, Boss DM2 and or chorus CE3 position 2 on the smaller remote amp (don't need much). Massive sound that encouraged double and triple stop chords.

Share This Page