Volume pedals, what the hell do they do?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by WildBill, Jul 9, 2002.

  1. WildBill


    Jul 7, 2002
    I want to know why volume pedals are necessary. I just wanna know what they do.Ive never used one or read anything about one. just curious.
  2. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    Pretty much, what the name suggests. It is an easy way to adjust volumes. The only real purpose of it I can think of a volume pedal for bass is for cool fade ins and if you wanna get louder for a solo or something.
  3. FalsehoodBass


    Jul 22, 2001
    Denver, CO
    yea... its the same thing as a volume pot, but mounted on a pedal so you can use it while both of your hands are busy.
  4. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Think of it in the terms that a studio engineer does - they bring up the bass levels where it enhances the music and bring them down where the bass would be too dominant. Whenever, a song has lots of wide dynamics, a volume pedal can be essential, live (since the guys at the board don't know where to bring your levels down, unless they travel with you).

    Sure, you can control your volume with your hands. But, it's almost as if you are fighting against your amp settings.

    Have you seen the David Bowie "fan request" concert on cable TV???

    The bassist is Me'shell 'Ngdege O'cello, (or whatever the hell her cryptic name is). If you can see/hear the concert, watch her right foot on the volume pedal. She works it big time.

    Like a good studio engineer, she brings up the volume wherever the sound of the other instruments gets thin and/or wherever the music calls for a heavy emphasis on the bassline. Then, she will back off of the pedal and seamlessly blend into the general sound mix.

    What some bassists, (including moi :D), are doing these days is using a unit like a Sansamp Bass Driver, a bass chorus, (or other pedal), to bring up the bass whenever we play for a bit on the D and G strings. Otherwise, the sound of those strings is thin and tends to get lost in the mix unlike the powerful B/E/A strings.
  5. DanGouge


    May 25, 2000
    If your bass has multiple volume knobs (like a passive jazz bass) it's easier to mute with a volume pedal.
  6. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    With a volume pedal it's also easy to create synth- or violin-like textures.
    You play a chord or singlenote with the volume pedal shut and then you gradually open it.
    This way you remove the attack phase and with a little chorus thrown in you get interesting sounds and textures that sound more like a synth.