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Zoom B2 just came in at my office...

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Sundogue, Nov 30, 2006.


  1. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    I just got back from a service call (I'm at work) and my new Zoom B2 was on the desk in my office.

    Very cool. :hyper:

    I opened it up and had a gander at it. It is built very solid. Battery access is very easy to get at. AC adapter is provided though too.

    I have a gig tomorrow night and I won't have much time to really program any presets by then, but I should have some fun with it tonight.

    I do have two gigs next weekend, so I'll spend the weekend and next week programming it. I'll post a review of it after next weekend's gigs.

    Keep in mind, aside from the amp modelling and effects I had on a BAM 210 combo a few years back, I've always been an effects-less bass player for the past 25+ years. So my review will not be coming from an effects guru, but perhaps it will help someone who is looking for a multi-effects pedal or someone new to effects, and what they could expect from this unit.

    :bassist: :D
     
  2. good choice for those whose on a tight budget...have fun with it... I did :D
     
  3. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    Well, OK, I lied.

    I found the time to mess with it. :D

    I was up until midnight, but I didn't start working with it until 9:00. I must say, I am very impressed with this little unit.

    Wow, in three hours I tweaked out three of my own presets to use tonight. I have spent years looking for "my" sound, always trading amps and cabs. Last night working with the Zoom B2, I got a fabulous tube amp sound. They have some modelled, but I tweaked the stock Zoom Tube Pre patch. I used to own an Ampeg SVT years ago and I've played through many from time to time. If I get nothing else out of this, for $100 I got a great vintage Ampeg SVT tube sound out of it, and a tuner.

    But I also copped a great sound of Tom Petterson's 12 string bass (we do quite a bit of Cheap Trick tunes). Full, lush chord like tone that fits it wonderfully.

    Anyone who is on a budget (heck even anyone who isn't), should really check this unit out. It's built solid and despite most of the factory default patches being useless (as most tend to be), if you spend some time with it, there are so many ways to tweak the sound until you get just what you want.

    I haven't messed around much with all the effects (aside from noodling around and having some fun with it), so I can't say how great the effects are, aside from the chorus (which is great by the way). The compressor/limiter is great too. It was my search for a compressor that led me to try an effects pedal. This unit is also noise free. It is totally transparent.

    I'll see how it is on a live gig tonight. There are a lot of features in this thing and I haven't even scratched the surface.

    I"ll write up a more thorough review after I mess more with it this weekend and next week. Then after my two gigs next weekend, I should have a pretty clear idea how it performs.

    So far, so good. I'm really impressed with it.
     
  4. I have a zoom pedal I play around with. It's great for experimenting to see if there is an effect you want. Like any multi effects pedal it does a lot of things moderately well, but doesn't do anything as well as a dedicated effect pedal. But they are a lot of fun to play with. Enjoy it
     
  5. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    Yeah, I wasn't really getting this to go all effects crazy. I really wanted a compressor and also to use it to easily get me to preset amp settings. The amp modelling, tone shaping, and EQ are top notch. It's better than hauling around a bunch of amps. ;)

    The effects are just icing on the cake. Even at that I don't use a lot of effects. I just use them sparingly as the variety of songs I play call for it.
     
  6. ihateusernames

    ihateusernames

    Jun 26, 2006
    ahhhh, B7? That's my stock sound to the stage with VERY little change to the factory preset.

    I like the Trace and SWR emulation as well but they required a little more work to suit my ear...at least with my bass.

    Glad you like it, I'll agree it's a great tool in a small budget item.
     
  7. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    Actually I think it was 26...but regardless, a lot of their stock presets use the Zoom Tube Pre for the Drive part.

    I can see a few songs where the SWR will work, but I need more time to work with it.

    Actually for a multi-effects pedal, there are a lot of stock presets that are useful as is. At least they don't require a ton of tweaking.
     
  8. How solid are the expression pedal & jacks, & does it have tremolo?
     
  9. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    I only got the B2, not the B2u.1 with the expression pedal. I might have gotten that one if I had the money at the time, if only for the XLR and USB out. I probably wouldn't use the pedal much anyway, as whatever I'm going to use will be in a preset and not on the fly.

    Everything about the unit is rock solid. Very well built. All metal chassis, with thick rubber sides and feet. The stomp buttons have a very definitive feel and are very solid as well.

    While I wouldn't abuse it, it looks and feels like it can withstand heavy gigging.

    Yes, it does have a tremelo, but I haven't tried that effect. You can program up to 9 effects modules simultaneously, but some are within the same module, so if you can't use two that are in the same module at the same time.
     
  10. Thanks- I realized after posting that yours might not have the expression pedal. I had a 706 or whatever- the one w/exp- & it half-crapped out on me(glitchy jacks)in front of 300 people, so I wen dry for awhile. I was impressed w/Zoom's ease of tweakage. Sounds like that's a general Zoom thing. Might have to grab one.
     
  11. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    I did a ton of research, solicting opinions and reading reviews and manuals for different multi-effects pedals before I settled on the B2.

    Apparently Zoom used to make their pedal chassis out of plastic. Also, Korg still makes their's out of plastic as well (not the AX3000B which is metal though).

    I really did not want to take a chance on a plastic one. While they might sound great, reliability is a big concern of mine because I gig quite often.

    The Zoom, while having a very small footprint, is pretty heavy for it's size. And it is very solid. Obviously I can't attest to it's durability because I haven't even played a single gig with it, but I can't imagine it breaking down any more than any other well built piece of equipment we use. The jacks are metal and are solidly mounted in the metal chassis.
     
  12. Totally with you on the Tube Pre drive selection. I don't have a huge use for it, but when I do need that sound, among the other drive selections, that's the one that won me over. I think it's pretty darn good sounding.

    I have mine set up with about six presets of my own. Chorus, octave, chorus/octave combo (for the band's cover of "Sledgehammer"), auto-wah (for Sly's "ThankYou..), the Tube Pre overdrive patch, and one for mild phaser to do "Tell Me Somethin' Good." What more would I need? The sounds are right there when I need 'em, it's easy to set up, and has a great tuner.

    Even though I've had it a while, I haven't messed around fully with things like the synth section (which I've heard sketchy things about), and I've only "Zoomed" through all the presets a couple of times to hear them, but I tend not to go with factory settings. Too much EQ and delay effects added for my live work. So I do my own. A nice upgrade the 506II I was using for a while.

    By the way, Zoom still makes multis with plastic cases, as in the newer B1 series, which is supposed to have the same chip (ZFX 3, I think) as the B2 (and the guitar and acoustic models as well), which ought to mean the noise and basic effect sound specs would be comparable, only at a lower cost. I might have liked checking that unit out, but they chose to bring out the more expensive model first (back in the spring), but hey, it's $100 well spent, I reckon! Enjoy!
     
  13. Deepwoods

    Deepwoods Supporting Member

    Dec 5, 2003
    St. Louis
    I just got mine also. My first impression is very favorable regarding build quality. It's definitely gig worthy. I plan on using it just for a solo boost probably the SVT patch which sounds good to my ears. I also like the auto wah and the -12octave down. The tuner is great and the unit is very quiet. The on/off switch is very handy and and did not give a nasty pop thru my practice amp while turning it off with the amp on. I assume by switching it off it will not drain the battery even while plugged into the input (not entirely sure of that though). Great bang for the buck. I hope to have more time to explore programming my own patches as it does not seem too difficult. I may end up getting the g*&$^# version soon as well. Good stuff Zoom!
     
  14. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    Well, after last night's gig, this thing was THE best piece of equipment I ever bought (aside from my bass).

    Everyone in the band was blown away by my stage sound, as was I. It took a little bit of extra tweaking for using it through my live stage rig, but it gave me the most awesome sound.

    I was able to hear every note clearly, yet it had the tone I've wanted, but couldn't quite come close to. It had such a nice, tight focused sound that I didn't even use my 115 cab with my 210. Normally I add that to my 210 to give my tone some depth and bottom.

    It wasn't even necessary, because the sound I was getting out of the Zoom B2 was just incredible as is.

    I only have a basic Zoom B2 Tube Preamp with compression as my main tone, and it was fabulous. The only other preset I had time to add was the same sound, but with the stereo chorus added into it for another preset.

    I could probably have gotten a nice rackmount tube preamp and obtained the same sound, but I like that I have so many other tonal and effect options available to play around with.

    The noise of the Zoom B2 through my rig live was non-existent and totally transparent.

    So far, I'm really digging it. Much more work to do with it yet though, so after my next two gigs with it, I'll post a more thorough review.
     
  15. Good to see you like how it performed for you.

    Let us know how things develop.
     
  16. i used a zoom 3000B for years and only 'upgraded' to a bass pod live last year but i still craved the lush phasers on the zoom units.......then i saw the G9.2tt its a guitar pedal with 2 tubes/valves as preamp aswell as the usual effects i bought it for my bro as he's the axe man but when i was fiddling i fell in love and bought one for me the next day(well kept the 1st and bought new 4 bro).

    as i like the sound of my new amp (behringer 410A combo) im only using it for effects and boy is it sweet for those, it has 2 expressions, 1 with a sideways moving plate so you can tweak 2 variables @once with one foot up and down and left to right, like delay mix and chorus speed for example or drive gain and delay time, unfortunatly you cant have wah and phaser @ the same time but thats what my wah pedal is for through the units FX loop (with return level too). my only problem is with the EQ as its for a 6 string the frequency range isnt low enough but it can be switched out of the chain so my amp does the EQ (or i could use a bass graphic pedal in the FX loop post preamp).

    sorry if it seems like im hijacking the thread just its zoom related and the effect models are the same.

    good news a bass version is on the way in a matter of months.
     
  17. ihateusernames

    ihateusernames

    Jun 26, 2006
    YOu know this for certain??!!!

    I'll be all over that....too bad they don't package it like the GFX series. I really like those displays (use the GFX-8 for guitar). User interface on them is brainless as well.

    hot damn, thanks for the tip off :bassist:
     
  18. it was in last months guitarist mag in the uk that zoom are releasing the bass version, im a bit gutted as i LOVE the guitar one just the EQ isnt voiced for low end, but as i hate zooms bass specific modules (thye synths were rubbish, fretless was usless other than the soft attack compressor what it was, the slap patch was the reverse (hard attack) the auto wahs were ok but.... meh) i dont mind having the guitar one as the mod and delay FX are sweet (usually the same but a slight change for bass/guitar) just a shame i HAD to have that pedal hehe but my amp acts as the eq for it so im ok there.
     
  19. Any change you can scan in the article on that? I would love to read more about it. I searched their site but couldn't find it.
     
  20. oh crap sorry, i read it wrong its the B1x thats coming.... features 32-bit zfx-3 like in the G9.2tt but only one of them (i think the one i have has 2 to handle all the fx) priced @ £65

    sorry about that (i feel so stupid now)
     

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