Volume pedal question...

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by DinnerWithAGypsy, Jan 15, 2013.

  1. I tried reading through all the old threads as a diligent TBer ought, but in the end there are just too many variables and I would simply prefer a quick, straight answer to my situation.

    I'm planning on getting on a volume pedal (probably an EB VP Jr., due to its popularity and the relatively small footprint). I use active and passive basses. I'm planning on placing the pedal after my tuner, envelope filter, compression, and OD/dirt pedals but before time-based/modulation effects (like chorus, reverb/delay, etc.).

    Should I get the 250k or the 25k version? And in a best case scenario, will I still experience some tone suckage based on my planned signal chain?

    And is that the best placement for the pedal in my signal chain? It seemed to make sense in my mind for it to be there.
  2. Do you play active or passive basses?
    You could also want to use the tuner out from the volume pedal just to plug the tuner and keep it out of the chain.
    I haven't noticed any tone suck from mine...
  3. Roscoe East

    Roscoe East

    Aug 22, 2011
    I'd say 40% of the time I want a volume pedal in front of the envelope filter, and the other 60% I want it after. You can get more variety in the types of "quack/blarp/womp" if you turn up the sensetivity on the envelope filter but then vary the level of the signal going into it...but of course, "variety" is often synonymous with "inconsistency " so it depends what your sonic goals are.
  4. Crater


    Oct 12, 2011
    Dallas, TX area
    250K for guitars or basses. The 25K ohm version is for keyboards. Yes, there is a potential for some tone suck, but putting the volume pedal after a buffered pedal will help negate that.

    Personally, I put the volume pedal last in my chain, so I can mute everything if I have to change instruments or tune or whatever. But you can put it where ever you'd like. :)
  5. As stated in the original post, I play both passive and active basses.

    I read that the tuner out function adds tone suckage (somehow). Are there no legs to this claim?
    Beyond that, I like having the tuner at the front of my chain, to insure the signal going to it is dry and unaffected, straight from my bass.

    Honestly, I'll mostly be using a volume pedal for swells (including coming in on tonic at the end of songs) and for getting slightly softer during verses and louder during choruses. I don't want the signal going into my OD/dirt pedals to be affected by this, and the envelope filter has to come before the OD/dirt pedals; therefore, the envelope filter has to stay before the volume pedal as far as I can tell.

    Okay, 250k it is. Thanks.

    True bypass pedals only act as buffers if they're on/engaged, correct?

    And when I tune, the signal is already muted (I don't run my tuner on an A-B pedal), and that's usually how I go about switching instruments, too.
  6. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    True bypass pedals are NOT buffered. They are the opposite of buffered.
    Many players, myself included, like dirt BEFORE the filter.
  7. I can go into several reason why you don't want an EB, but I won't.

    My question is, why are you running through the tuner when you have a tuner out on the volume?
  8. Right. Okay. I understand the whole buffered-vs.-true-bypass thing I think. Thanks.

    To respond to the second part, the reason I have my OD/dirt pedals after my envelope filter is because I like the first effect my signal runs into to be my envelope filter so that the dynamics are unaltered upon input. A lot of OD/dirt pedals naturally compress, especially as the gain is turned up, which sounds great, but not so much if you have an envelope filter in the chain after them that directly responds to the player's dynamics.

    Please do! I would appreciate hearing them, truly. :hyper:

    I'm running through the tuner currently because I don't yet have a volume pedal; I'm merely potentially considering / planning on buying a volume pedal.
  9. Crater


    Oct 12, 2011
    Dallas, TX area
    Disclaimer: I don't own nor have used an EB volume pedal, I've used a couple of others, including a crybaby wah I modified to be a passive volume pedal.

    The objections I've heard to the EB volume pedal are:
    1) Tone suck (it's minor, and is usually not a problem because one can bump up the treble on their amp a smidge to compensate)
    2) The string breaks. The rotary pot is turned with a string, and eventually it will break. Replacing it is a hassle, so I hear.
    3) The mechanical pot will eventually wear out too. It makes it sound 'scratchy' when it's moved, replacing the pot is the only repair.

    Items 2 and 3 should only happen after years of normal use, your mileage may vary.
  10. Roscoe East

    Roscoe East

    Aug 22, 2011
    Beat me to it!
  11. Roscoe East

    Roscoe East

    Aug 22, 2011
    I won't disagree that replacing it is a hassle...but fwiw, I've been using my Ernie Ball volume pedal since 1989, and I've only had to replace the string once in those >23 years.
  12. And why is it exactly that at least two of you prefer your envelope filter pedals after your OD/dirt pedals?

    Interesting. Isn't there some company you can either get a modded EB VP through or send your EB VP. Jr. to to get modded to eliminate the tone loss?
  13. Roscoe East

    Roscoe East

    Aug 22, 2011
    For me it's because the action of the filter can be made more overt if the signal being filtered is incredibly rich in harmonics...and dirt/fuzz/OD is basically a way of piling on exaggerated harmonics.

    Conversely -- especially if I've got the filter setup to move (i.e., tightly track the envelope) -- I find that adding distortion after that filter just masks the effect that I'm trying to highlight in the first place.
  14. Huh. Interesting.
    I guess for me I rarely ever mix my envelope filter with any sort of fuzz or dirt-related anything -- I typically use my filter by itself for clean, funky slap/fingerstyle style playing -- so that's not something I've taken into consideration. Makes sense though.
  15. Don't forget to play with the taper switch on the 250k version. It's behind the jack plate out of sight. If you don't get the feel you like try flipping that little switch.
  16. Gmclachlan


    May 11, 2011
    If you A/B the EB with an active pedal, you'll notice the high end and volume drop. Thru-Tone makes a modded Ernie Ball (he makes it active), or you can send him yours to mod. I think JHS pedals does as well.
  17. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    tuner outs are evil, do not use them!

    you want the 25k pedal, and you want to keep it after a buffered or always-on effect. 250k pedals will suck tone before any buffers and have a bad sweep after them.

    (Gmclachlan beat me to thru-tone for modding Ernie ball pedals to active, so they work right no matter where you run them.)
  18. Bassist30


    Mar 19, 2004
    Sounds interesting. Im in the market of getting a good volume pedal. I myself always find that a looper ( The kind that switches pedals on and off) as the way to go with me. I dont worry about True By pass or whatever the pedals out functions. But with a volume pedal I am thinking it to be out of the loop (pun intended), so i am looking for the cleanest possible volume pedal i can get. I have an active bass but at times i do use passive. Would this pedal cause problems?
  19. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    again, what has to happen for no tone suck is the volume pedal needs to be after a buffer, whether it's the one in your active bass or from a buffered pedal (like a boss tuner) in front of it.
  20. smeet

    smeet Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2006
    Woodland Hills, CA
    Or get an active volume pedal like the visual sound VV10.
    I have one of the new Dunlops (the huge one) and it works fine, taper is weird at the high end. I might get a Visual Sound as the LEDs are a nice feature.