What is the most forgiving envelope filter?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by jumblemind, Jan 11, 2017.


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  1. jumblemind

    jumblemind I also answer to Bryan Supporting Member

    Aug 27, 2011
    Knoxville
    Envelope filters are a persnickety lot. I hear awesome tones in recorded songs, on YouTube demo's (usually solo'd jazz bass), even at some live concerts, but it in my own live use, they can be hard to use with my heavy hand and usual P bass preference. So which ones are more "forgiving" for a club gig, where you don't have to concentrate too heavily on technique or have additional volume boost to get a good, noticeable sound?
     
  2. jumblemind

    jumblemind I also answer to Bryan Supporting Member

    Aug 27, 2011
    Knoxville
    Here's an answer my own question to keep the original post cleaner: For me, the envelope filter models in the Zoom MS-60b have worked best of all, mostly because I can program a patch with a mid boost EQ in front and preamp or amp sim behind it to iron out the wrinkles, but I'm curious about stand-alones again.

    Off the top of my head I've tried the Mutron III, MXR Bass Envelope Filter, DOD FX25, Mooer Sweeper, and none of them worked great for me. (Mutron is the best in my rig, but it was too big for my irregular use).
     
  3. DDXdesign

    DDXdesign formerly 'jammadave' Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 15, 2003
    Vegas
    What seems to be the issue with them? Too quacky, too peaky, too volume spikey, or what? That could help people suggest stuff.

    For me personally, beyond my occasional love affair with the bassballs/sweeper sound, I like the filter in the bass synth wah, I like DOD 440 style filters, and I like the aggie Filter Twin the best. As a matter of fact, I don't think the FT is capable of a bad sound, if you don't mind it boosting your volume a little.
     
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  4. Double E

    Double E I ain't got no time to play... Supporting Member

    Dec 24, 2005
    Cleveland, OH
    The real beauty of an envelope filter is it's response to the dynamics of your playing... Being able to control the filter by changing your attack makes it like two pedals in one. With controlled technique you can go from an ultra low dub almost synthy tone to an all out barrage of quacky, slippery, wah-waka-wah all in the same measure.

    It is also an effect that should be used sparingly IMHO or it loses it's impact. Since the time spent using a filter is limited it may be more feasible maintain to control your playing for those times and then go hog wild the rest of the night!
     
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  5. Televator

    Televator

    Aug 24, 2011
    I have an Analogman EV that is very forgiving. It's much less picky / easier to use than my the Keeley Neutrino I had.
     
  6. Matt Dean

    Matt Dean Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2007
    SF (North) Bay Area
    I've tried a lot of different env filters and have gone back to the GR2 three times because it's the easiest for dialing-in fat juicy tones.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2017
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  7. BassBrass

    BassBrass

    Jul 6, 2009
    Boston MA
    I'm loving an Ashdown Dr Green Doctor Note (which is purple) like the earlier Ashdown it has a 2 filter free dial setup and you can get some up with the down or visa versa (for setting the curve's peak), low pass with some band pass or the opposite, or if you dime the dial just one factor. easy to set sensitivity too. My other favorite envelope is the Ibanez Bass Synth with no drive on. It has a low center capacity for deep wahs, but the Ashdown is better sounding to me these days.
     
  8. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    A compressor before the filter will send a more consistent level to the filter and cause it to respond more... consistently... There will still be some variation between a hard pluck and a soft one but it will even it out and since the filter is volume dependent, it should be more forgiving.
     
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  9. FilterFunk

    FilterFunk Everything is on the ONE! Supporting Member

    Mar 31, 2010
    3Leaf Audio GR and GR2
    EMMA DiscumBOBulator
    Jacques Trinity Wah
     
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  10. Teijo K.

    Teijo K. Commercial User

    Sep 8, 2014
    Jyväskylä, Finland
    Endorsing Artist: CCP
    I spent a lot of time with the MS60b but never got the envelope filter sounds just right. Bought a SA Manta and it was basically just there. Never touched the Zoom filters again.
     
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  11. Double E

    Double E I ain't got no time to play... Supporting Member

    Dec 24, 2005
    Cleveland, OH
    Frankly...for me, having a filter that responds too evenly would not be desired. Again, the variation in the way the envelope opens with the different way notes are played makes the effect more interesting to hear.
     
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  12. dinoadventures

    dinoadventures Feets don't fail me now!

    Jul 10, 2015
    Dallas, TX
    Absolutely the Mr Black Fwonkbeta. It's only really good for that one noise and it'll give it to you no questions asked.
     
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  13. jumblemind

    jumblemind I also answer to Bryan Supporting Member

    Aug 27, 2011
    Knoxville
    Interesting, I always passed on the Manta because I was worried the opposite would be true. I'm not much of a twiddler, and the amount of options SA includes in their stuff feels slightly overwhelming to the goal of finding the right sound.
     
    chaak likes this.
  14. I really like the MS60b filters in combo with an EQ, amp SIM or comp/limiter to really tailor filter sounds. If there was a BassBalls on there it might be all my filter needs in one, for live.
     
  15. willsellout

    willsellout Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2002
    Fort Wayne, IN
    This. I'd also add in the Proton. It's a tame filter.
     
  16. jumblemind

    jumblemind I also answer to Bryan Supporting Member

    Aug 27, 2011
    Knoxville
    I have a Keeley limiter at the end of my chain so spikes aren't really a problem. Maybe too quacky? I do like a good syrup sound. When I get that special moment to use one and kick it on, it's like the bass foundation drops out too abrubtly. There's a perceived volume loss, so I probably dig into the strings more to get more oomph, and that's counter to being able to work the filter for different sounds.

    Maybe the volume boost on the Filter Twin would be a good thing.

    All the demo's I see of the Proton seem to lack the "bass foundation" thing. If I were playing a jazz bass all of the time with funky stuff and a band that slotted well around me, that'd be great. But I play with a heavy hitting drummer and fairly dense guitars.
     
  17. Moogerfooger MF101 low pass filter/ envelope follower
    THE best imho ime
     
  18. Sunset Shalom

    Sunset Shalom

    May 9, 2016
    Depending on what you mean a very simple or complex filter might work for you. Simple ones are nice becouse they have more "useable" range and don't take much tweaking, complex ones are nice becouse you can dial in exactly what you are looking for, it just takes more tweaking. I prefer the latter at least in a studio setting.

    The only stand alone envelope I have tried is the EHX Riddler which can be very forgiving when dialed in right or can be tweaked for strange/ unique sounds.
     
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  19. Matt Dean

    Matt Dean Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2007
    SF (North) Bay Area
    I've tried the Manta twice and could not achieve oneness with it.
     
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  20. willsellout

    willsellout Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2002
    Fort Wayne, IN
    I have found that with every SA pedal unfortunately. I desperately want to like their stuff, it just doesn't work for me. That Manta can't do what your GR2 can do;)
     
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