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! :)

What is a good heavy distortion pedal?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Jacob Painter, Nov 24, 2004.

  1. Jacob Painter

    Jacob Painter

    Jan 15, 2003
    Timpson, TX
    I'm looking for a pedal that sounds heavy but keeps the fat sound of the bass to it....price is someone what of a problem. Please help a novice player out.
  2. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    how much of a problem is price? Can you put a figure on it? I'm sure you know that generally you get what you pay for.
    Also, did you read the distortion review mega thread? That'll help you narrow it down.
  3. Cliff em'All

    Cliff em'All

    Sep 27, 2004
    electro harmonix big muff works well
  4. The Red Menace

    The Red Menace

    Nov 25, 2004
    I used to use an Ibanez PD7 when I played a lot of distorted bass. It was great for the money and I actually liked it better than any of the higher end stuff.
  5. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

  6. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    Here's a copy of a review that I did recently in another thread. This Boss unit might be just the ticket for you:

    Because of this thread I went to Guitar Center (Milwaukee) yesterday and tried the Boss ODB-3 ($80).

    What grabbed me the most about it is how it worked with harmonies and chords - it worked very well! I carefully listened to various harmonies. Fifths, tenths (Maj and min), octaves and 1-5-8 'power chords' sounded great, with no muddy or messy overtones - in fact when it comes to fifths, I'd say that lower ones that would start to sound muddy even CLEAN exhibited a clear, dense, musical overtone structure. Even striaght major thirds sounded good when played up at a little bit higher registers, and minor thirds weren't really bad at all. Forths too - rich musical-sounding distortion overtones.

    The bass and treble controls generally sounded best with the controls set flat. I messed with the blend control, and to me it sounded best with just a tad of clean blended. I left the gain all the way up - it does have a bit of a harsh transition between clipping and clean, but it wasn't super-noisy with the gain cranked. It seemed to naturally boost the signal, and I had to run the output control at or below 9-O'clock to have the volume not jump a ton when I activated the pedal. The tone controls affect the clean signal as well as the effected one when the blend control is used.

    I'd say this thing is fairly amazing for anyone who wants to play metal-guitar sounding power chords on the A-D-G strings. I mean not just an acceptable substitution, but truly stand-on-it's-own GOOD! ..and it does NOT suck the low-end out - in fact: when playing a 1-5 harmony, it very nicely brings out the natural octave-below-the-root subharmonic that always comes along with a 1-5, and creates a very rich and full chord sound, so it doesn't sound like 'the bass guitar dropped out' when you switch from a bass line to power-riff mode.

    Being that the overtone structure was not as dense for single notes, it lends to a bit of a splattery buzz-saw tone for single stops - a great sound for punk or hardcore, I'd imagine. It didn't really have that anolog-synth sound for single-note at-a-time melodies like some effects do (like the $300 Wolly Mammoth I mentioned in an earlier post). I think units that DO excel at that effect tend to fall apart with harmonies though, right?

    I think I'm going to buy one. The power-chord capability should be valuable for our three-piece band (a three-peice with a very solo-jam-happy guitarist!).

    Hope this helps,

  7. Rich600


    Nov 22, 2004
    I use the Ibanez ds7 and its really heavy,thick sounding also very versatile.
  8. Melvin7822

    Melvin7822 Supporting Member

    May 11, 2004
    Broomfield, CO
    Like good ole Dave Wilson, I've been through many distortions, fuzzes, and overdrives.

    What I currently have in my rack are these three:
    Digitech Bass Driver
    Fulltone BassDrive
    HAO Rust Ride

    If you want great versatility and good sound for the price, go with the Digitech. Just make sure you try it out in the store first.

    Some bassists that actually use this currently are Joe from Chevelle, Matt from Story of the Year, and Shavo from System of a Down.
  9. Tedintheshed

    Tedintheshed Banned

    Oct 8, 2004
    Columbus, Ohio
    I really like my MXR M-80 Bass DI+. it's a swiss army knife of pedals- in addition to a distortion (NOT an overdrive) you get 3 bands of usable EQ, a DI box, a noise gate- all kinds of stuff.