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Volume Pedals - are they necessary?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by straylite, Mar 17, 2014.

  1. straylite


    Mar 7, 2014
    Hey guys,

    I'm a long time reader, but this is my first post. I'm building a new pedal board and I really can't decide if I need a volume pedal. My instincts tell me yes, of course. But I do not want it to be something I barely use, that takes up a sizable chunk of the board.

    My initial thought was that I could use a volume pedal to create side-chain compression effects for electronic gigs. What do you guys think? Is your volume pedal absolutely necessary for your rig, or is it mostly a mute pedal when you're on break?
  2. I play with alot of fuzz and I hate noise gates. For me I use a volume pedal as a mute between any section that I'm not actually playing anything or the buzz is terrible. I find this to be the biggest plus to a volume pedal and don't really use it for much else on bass. Necessary? Far from it imo, but still useful. You really won't know until you start using one I think.

    You can also do some really cool things having a volume pedal in front of your delay.
  3. simenandreas


    Jan 23, 2011
    I wouldn't bother buying it.. You got volume on your bass, and maybe a tuner to mute the signal?
  4. Jon Moody

    Jon Moody Commercial User

    Sep 9, 2007
    Kalamazoo, MI
    Manager of Digital Brand Development and Product Development at GHS Strings
    I find a volume pedal convenient, not necessary. For my gigs, using it either as a mute, or to help control the volume at a moment's notice is handy. Plus, with the Visual Volume (from Visual Sound), I also use it as an A/B switch as well as a boost.
  5. I use it to fade in parts, mute, draw volume back without tonal changes, and as a quick bail out if anything goes wrong.

    I kinda look at it more as a utility than an effect.
  6. A long delay after the volume pedal... aaaaaaah what is fun if not this?
  7. Joeynone

    Joeynone www.facethekingband.com Supporting Member

    Aug 2, 2011
    Long Island, NY
    I play in a band similar to muse/U2/30 seconds to mars and I couldn't live without my volume pedal. It's actually a complete necessity for what I do with swelling... A knob won't swell my effected tone the same way PLUS having full control with my foot and right hand is super important to me
  8. Swift713


    Dec 4, 2006
    Florence, Ma
    I use it for swells etc. I would absolutely not bother using it as just a mute - (it doesn't even really stay in the off position) or really to adjust levels if I didn't have it there for swells.
  9. russpurdy


    Apr 16, 2013
    If your not sure you'll use it don't buy one. Maybe go play around with one for twenty minutes at a music shop and see if it seems like something you could use in a musical way. Also, if you find one that can double as an expression pedal for other gear that may be helpful.
  10. MCS4

    MCS4 Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2012
    Fort Lauderdale, FL
    I enjoyed my volume pedal when I had one (on the ME-50B)... but realistically my tuner mute and volume knob cover 95% of what I used it for, so it's not worth the pedalboard space for me these days.
  11. bassmusic17


    Jan 15, 2011
    My bass doesn't have a single master volume knob so it is a must have for me.
  12. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    My volume pedal gets some use - mostly as a "mute," but I use it in "La Villa Strangiato" (for instance) to come in on the C following the flamenco introduction as the momentum for the riff builds and the volume comes up. Other than that, I can't say it's used often. It's certainly not essential, but when you need it it's VERY nice to have.
  13. I've never really used them. Im 32, started playing about 20 years ago and just recently got into effects. I guess because I didn't use pedals for so long I got really used to using the volume on the bass for swells.
  14. Swift713


    Dec 4, 2006
    Florence, Ma
    The volume knob has better control IMO but the pedal can be faster and works better for instruments which have more than one vol knob.
  15. Lebowsky

    Lebowsky Effects Forum Resident Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2007
    Lausanne, Switzerland
  16. Not necessary, I don't use one, but I can see where one at the very end of the chain could be very useful. I am using my Warwick lately and it has a single volume knob, plus I have a clean boost pedal, and even with that amount of clean gain/volume control I am thinking about adding a volume pedal.