What's the best bass multi effects pedal?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by sabbath1977, Oct 7, 2003.

  1. I need a new one,so if anyone can help me here I'll appreciate it.
  2. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    What do you want to do with it?
  3. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    IMO, multieffects suck because they are digital.

    As with amplification/pickups - there's no "cheap" way out if you perform in front of an audience.

    Look at the schematics for featured bassists in "Bass Player" magazine.....they don't use multi-effects either. They use higher-end, dedicated, analog, effects.
  4. So, what you're saying is that I should forget about buying a multi effects pedal and buy the pedals separately?
  5. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    IMO, if you're just playing recreationally, a multi-effect like the Boss GT6B or a Line 6 Bass POD is a great addition. If I didn't play for a living, I'd just get a good multi-effect such as the Line 6 or the Boss and be done with it.

    But, if you're "playing for pay", you don't have time onstage to search through the numerous presets these multi-effects offer.
    For instance, I use an Akai Deep Impact onstage. It's a very limited effect compared to the Line 6 or the Boss because it only allows for 9 presets.
    Still, I have it programmed so I only use the first 3 of its 9 preset effects onstage. Otherwise, I'd waste too much time between songs scrolling through its 9 presets, looking for the one I want.
    Plus, you want true bypass, whenever possible, so that the effects don't introduce any noise into your signal when not in use.

    Analog typically sounds "deeper," more "authentic" and less "sterile" than digital. However, sometimes you can find a digital bass effect that sounds so "out there" it's cool, like some of the Boss pedals.

    Finally, as I mentioned previously - you won't see any "name" bassists I know of who use something like a cheapo Digitech multi-effects pedal. They won't compromise their sound.
  6. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    depends how much money you have / want to spend, and how many different effects you want to use within the multifx.

    As rickbass said, these things have their place. But multi-fx units are always a compromise. The best chorus pedal out there is going to be better than the chorus on a multi fx box. But with the box you get the convenience factor of size, presets etc.

    I now have an all individual pedal setup, and love it. But for years I used a digitech bp8, which to my ears is the best multi fx out there. It has a tube in there to warm up the sound, so it's not as harsh sounding as other pedals. I've also used Boss ME-8, GT6B, Digitech BP200, Zoom BFX 708 multi fx boxes.

    In fact, I have a Zoom 708 which I take to rehearsals - less hassle than schlepping my pedal board into work with me in the mornings. The 708 is great value for the money, but isn't built strongly enough for live use - the construction is plastic so you have to be gentle with it, but for rehearsals it's fine.
  7. craigb

    craigb Supporting Member

    I won't get into what's "best" as I haven't tried enough to have an opinion.

    I went back to my cheap digital multifx pedal (Zoom BFX-708) because after starting down the analog pedal path (Akai Unibass & Deep Impact) I realized that for me it was going to end up far more bulk and expense than I was willing to live with.

    Everyone has different wants/needs so suffice it to say that for the occasional use of effects I want/need and the infrequent gigging schedule of my band the Zoom is just fine.

    My main reason for chiming in here is this: if you end up going with an inexpensive digital multifx you may find that:

    1) it sucks tone even in bypass mode and
    2) it lacks in low-end at all times

    my solution for this, that works for me and makes me satisfied with the pedal, is to add a Boss LS-2 line selector to the multifx pedal. This pedal has a lot of options and I use it in A+B mode (it has several modes that do different things) to allow me to select between bypass (which sounds good to me, unlike the bypass built in to the pedal) and the effected sound mixed with my uneffected sound (the LS-2 is acting like a 2-channel mixer) restoring the lost low-end to the effected sound. The LS-2 isn't cheap (like $90 from various online retailers) but it let me go from being hesitant to use the multifx to being happy with it for the couple of songs where I want an effect.
  8. I have the Boss ME-6B,I'm not having the best results with this multifx pedal at all,can anyone give me some tips about this pedal?
  9. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    I'm not a big effect guy, but I like the Boss VF-1 for multi-effects. It's not bass multi-effect pedal, but a half rack multi FX that can be controlled with a footswitch. It has more effects than you need, easy to program, and sounds decent. Sounds good enough for Michael Manring. Works for stuff other than bass too.
  10. alexclaber

    alexclaber Commercial User

    Jun 19, 2001
    Brighton, UK
    Director - Barefaced Ltd
    You don't realise quite how big and heavy a pedalboard is until it's too late! I swear mine weighs almost as much as my rack.

    I imagine the LS-2 does a fine job of preserving your tone with the Zoom - I've always felt that if those cheap multi-FX had a decent wet/dry blend they'd be far more useful.

    Btw, both those Akai pedals are digital not analogue (that's not to say they're not excellent pedals though - I've got both and they're awesome).

  11. craigb

    craigb Supporting Member

    Definitely - I had the 2 Akais, a DI (Dunlop M-80), a tuner (Boss TU-2) and sometimes a wireless receiver. And it that alone filled up my homemade board. And I was already starting to think of other things to add to it. All for 2-4 songs per gig.

    My bad on the analog vs. digital statement - I really meant to comment on multifx vs. individual (I almost wanted to say discrete but that could be taken a different way as well ;) ).

    The difference between the Zoom alone and with the LS-2 is night-and-day. The Zoom by itself was bad enough that I was ready to drop it from my setup until I got the LS-2. Now I like playing with it and trying the different effects. When my band added a subwoofer to the PA it really underscored how much low end was dropping out when I kicked in the Zoom (by that point I was using a bypass pedal with it).

    I personally don't care one iota whether something is digital or analog - I just care how it sounds. I've even got a Behringer V-amp that I tried to see if it could replace my effects & preamp. Some of the amp models sounded good but the effects didn't do much for me and my G&Ls overdrive it too easily (for my taste). So it's relegated to headphone amp duty and I stick with the Zoom and Sansamp RBI for live duty.
  12. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    This looks to me like a rather elitist vision.
    Pros will also change their advice every 2 weeks and burn as much money as they want in gear.

    So basically pros can do what they want, I'm not sure I give a dime.
    If I could afford 20 pedals 200 bucks each with 500 $ of patch cable to connect them maybe I'd do that.
    In the between time, I'd rather use a multieffect thank you.
  13. Finger Blister

    Finger Blister

    Jul 8, 2003
    Or an Boss SE 70.
    And for the truly budget minded (me!) the Boss SE 50 is great too.
  14. stuie86


    May 9, 2003
    mckinney, tx
    ZOOM 506 II bass pedal

    i love it, its defently not for the stage, unless you make a habit of only using one effect per song. i like it cuase it comes with 36 pre programed effect.... BUT!!, you can mess with them all and make effects of your own and save them.
  15. hellboy


    Nov 5, 2002
    That's like complaining that your computer has too much RAM. You can put the presets you use next to each other.

    This, in fact, is one of the main advantages of multi-fx: you can hit the patch select switch once or twice and completely rewire your rig. Try doing that onstage with a conventional setup.

    Operative word being "cheapo". They do use expensive rack effects, because they can afford to.
  16. Why waste your time and energy with effets?

    I hate effects on bass.

    I don't mind them in the studio where they are in a controlled environment. A little chorus for definition and space! Live they blow!

  17. stuie86


    May 9, 2003
    mckinney, tx
    well treena, wasn't that mean spirited?

    ive heard plunty of live shows where the effects worked and sounded fine, so i dont know where your getting that from.

    but then again to each's own
  18. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Maybe you could consider not posting in the effect forum then ?
  19. I said I like them in the studio!

  20. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Boo !