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Zoom MS-60B: Octaves & Compressors?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by expatmuso, Jan 9, 2019.


  1. expatmuso

    expatmuso

    Sep 3, 2015
    Hello,

    I currently have a small pedal board. I've been thinking of getting a couple more pedals to round things out, but it's hard to decide with all of the myriad options out there. Then I discovered the MS-60B, and it seems like a good way to add more sounds to my board for a reasonable price. I have been doing a lot of ambient solo bass looping stuff lately. I have a looper, delay, and reverb, and I would like to add a compressor and some kind of octave or pitch shifter to give me higher pitch range on my 4 string bass. So, I was wondering if anyone who has experience with the pedal can let me know if the octave and pitch-shifter functions are good or not. Is the tracking decent? Sound quality? I'm especially curious as to how the upper octave sounds (if that's even available with this pedal).

    Also, I think I’d like to find a compressor and use it as an always on compressor. I was curious to know if doing this would effect patches that have a specific compression setting mixed into it. If I were to pick a compressor I like and use it as always-on, does that mean I shouldn’t use patches with compression built-in? Sorry if this is a silly question, I don’t have much experience with compressors.

    Thanks in advance for any insight you can share.
     
  2. MartinB

    MartinB

    Jun 7, 2017
    Birmingham, UK
    A compressor is one effect; a patch can have up to four effects. If you like the sound of one of the default patches but it has a compressor, you can delete the compressor.
     
    expatmuso likes this.
  3. brianmharrison

    brianmharrison

    Oct 11, 2007
    Atlanta
    I have one of these and really like it. It's like a swiss army knife. This pedal is worth it for the octaves, compressors and synth bass alone IMO. The 160 compressor is actually really good and the one I use most. For octaves it has an OC2 ish and a Pitch shift that is more based on a POG. The OC2 model is not exact (few octave pedals are), but has the glitches and such of the OC2 and is close enough no one would probably notice in a band setting. OC2 model only does down. The Pitch Shift does down and up octave. Tracking is really fast on both.

    The dirt settings are just okay, the chorus and delays are pretty good, but I don't have a use for those.

    Added benefit is it also has a HPF as well.

    You operate the pedal in 1 of 2 modes. You can add pedal and switch that individual pedal on and off like a regular pedal to use just a single effect. You can also save a patch with up to 4 pedals and use the foot switch to select between a set number of patches. In one patch you can layer multiple of the same effect as well.

    If you want an always on compressor, you would want to use the patch mode and add the compressor as one of your 4 pedals for each of your patches you want to switch between.
     
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  4. You can build patches any way you wish and the comps and limiters are quite good as are the pitch up effects. The tracking is good and you can do any interval up to an octave and also 2 octaves up. The Octave down sounds are not as satisfying as an analog octaver but used sparingly they can do in a pinch, especially if you add a second mono pitch octave down to support it. The mod effects, delays and verbs are outstanding, filters are very good, preamps, distortions and amp models are also very usable.

    For a utility piece you cannot go wrong and at the very least it is a smorgasbord of sounds letting you know where to invest in the future. I keep my MS60 in my studio go box for as needed effects on sessions.
     
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  5. danilocesar

    danilocesar

    May 5, 2018
    I'm using the MS60B for some time. It has bad points and good points.

    The worst of it is it's interface. There's only one foot switch and you can have four effects 'enabled in chain at the same time'.
    The foot switch only controls the effect that is actually being shown in the screen. You can't bypass the whole pedal (and no True ByPass).
    The workaround is to use a selector as the first effect in your chain. That will engage/disengage your whole chain. But then you can only have three effects.
    Also, changing presets requires some hand-clicking. Not a big deal when practicing, but it might be hard for gigs.

    That said: It sounds really good. More than what I expected for a digital pedal at that price range. Chorus are OK, preamps are OK, autowah is OK, drive is OK. Compressors are nice, the Orange will kill your tone the same way the analog one does, but what a kick.. =)
    I didn't like the pitch shifter - track is decent but sounded awful. Up and Down.

    update: About the horrible interface: There's a github page where you can connect your MS60B and edit the patch set from your web browser: g200kg/zoom-ms-utility
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2019
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  6. jumblemind

    jumblemind I also answer to Bryan Supporting Member

    Aug 27, 2011
    Knoxville
    If I'm reading correctly, you want the 60b to be your octave and you want to add a standalone compressor separately. There's only one octave-up model last I checked, and I agree with the post above, I'm not a fan of its sound. Of course, you can stack other effects models with it to help if you don't dig it exactly.

    To the 2nd question, then: No, it doesn't mean you shouldn't use patches with compression built in. If you find that it's too much of an audible effect have that much compression, you can dial it back within the patch or delete it altogether. Almost every preset patch on the 60b needs tweaking, anyway, as they all have waaaay too much gain out of the box. And really, creating your own patches is where it's at, anyway.
     
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  7. expatmuso

    expatmuso

    Sep 3, 2015
    Actually, I was hoping I could use a compressor from the Zoom MS-60B to act as an always on compressor. But now I don't think that's possible. If I did this then I wouldn't be able to use any of the other effects in the MS-60B, correct?

    ...and thanks to all the posters for your sharing your insight and opinions. I appreciate it!
     
  8. MartinB

    MartinB

    Jun 7, 2017
    Birmingham, UK
    I misunderstood your question then. If you're using several different patches, you can add the same compressor to each of them. The end result is that you have an "always on" compressor as you switch between patches.
     
  9. expatmuso

    expatmuso

    Sep 3, 2015
    Ok, thank you for the clarification MartinB. So then if I add the same compressor to each patch, I have an always on compressor so long as I am only using the MS-60B. But I have other pedals, and I'd like to have an always on compressor to effect those too. Would that be possible with the MS-60B? The way i understand it so far (and I could be wrong) is that if I want to have a compressor for my other pedals, I'd have to choose the compressor patch on the MS-60, and so long as I'm doing that I can't use other effects in the MS-60.

    Sorry, if I'm beating a dead horse to death here. :roflmao:
     
  10. danilocesar

    danilocesar

    May 5, 2018
    You can use 4 effects at the same time. They can be whatever you want. You can turn esch one of them on/off as you like.

    you can use a compressor, a chorus and a drive.
    you can use a reverb, a delay, a compressor and a wah.
    You can use 4 compressors at the same time if you want. You can engage/disengage the other effects and keep your compressor always on.
     
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  11. jumblemind

    jumblemind I also answer to Bryan Supporting Member

    Aug 27, 2011
    Knoxville
    The fundamental part of the 60b is a 4-slot patch. You can have 1, 2, 3, or 4 effects in a patch. You can program and store up to 50 patches.

    Within an individual patch, you can turn off different effects in a patch, but it is a manual process…you scroll across to the individual effect model using a dial, then use the stomp switch to turn the effect on/off. That’s not very practical when you’re jamming or playing live, so Zoom added a functionality that allows you to assign a letter to individual patches then enter a mode where the stomp switch scrolls through just those letter-assigned patches (which is how most of us use the 60b). Using that setup, let’s say you have three main patches you want to use with different effects, plus you want to be able to use your always on compressor by itself with your other standalone pedals. You could approach it this way:

    Patch A (compressor)
    Patch B (compressor, octave, chorus)
    Patch C (compressor, envelope filter, reverb)
    Patch D (compressor, flip top amp sim)

    If those are your preferred patches, you leave it on Patch A when you just want the compressor to be always on for the rest of your pedals. Stomp the switch once, and you’re on Patch B…still have your compressor but now you’ve added octave and chorus. If in the next tune you want just your compressor again, stomp the switch three times and you’ve cycled back to Patch A.
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2019
  12. expatmuso

    expatmuso

    Sep 3, 2015
    Thank you so much for the explanations. Well, that seems quite workable then :thumbsup:.
     
  13. @jumblemind has given a very good explanation of the possibilities of the little magic box MS60B or the other Zoom MS boxes. There is also a free editing program called ToneLib that makes it very easy to edit those programs so you can have presets ready to go.
    As far as the frustration with the user interface goes there are two camps. Some folks like to diddle on the fly changing sounds every time they play, so a preset pedal with menus can be a source of frustration and I get that. I am more a build sounds during practice or in the studio and being able to instantly recall that exact sound every time camp so multi effects fit my needs better.
    I am actually in both camps using both individual pedals and preset pedals as tools for performances.
     
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  14. alack

    alack

    Nov 20, 2000
    Florida
    I never leave the house without it. Depending on the gig I use it for a variety of effects. I love the compressors. The octaves aren't as good as my OC-2 or Nano Pod. But for my infrequent need of an octave it certainly is good enough.

    My new favorite effect in it is the B15 amp model. That really warmed up my GK rig.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2019 at 7:41 PM
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