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bassbora

Do you need effects?

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So I have been playing for almost 30 years and apart from owning Boss OC2 which I never used I have not really used effects. I was always curious about envelope filters but never really tried them. 

Do you guys use use effects a lot or do you just use something for the odd song or section in a song? If so what effects do you use most? 

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10 minutes ago, bassbora said:

So I have been playing for almost 30 years and apart from owning Boss OC2 which I never used I have not really used effects. I was always curious about envelope filters but never really tried them. 

Do you guys use use effects a lot or do you just use something for the odd song or section in a song? If so what effects do you use most? 

I think it depends on what sort of music you play and the quality of your gear. I am happy playing without any effects at all but have recently purchased a HX Stomp which is packed with infinitely tweakable effects and amp/cab sims. One of the huge benefits of the Stomp is that I often play live just going bass > Stomp > PA, as long as you have good monitors... I digress. I think you’ll find a surprising amount of players on BC that do perfectly well without effects.

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Personally for me there is a massive advantage in the simplicity of having no effects (not even a tuner pedal) in the chain, it means no 9V power supply (with a tiny wire and connector) or batteries to go flat. If you have the right bass, you can get a variety of usable sounds out of it (eg the "Jazz bass" twang by digging in, similar to distortion enhanced by setting up the amp appropriately).

I've used in the past: distortion (for one song - BOSS Mega Distortion MD2 I think is the code), graphic eq (as a boost pedal for a solo), bass chorus (whatever the BOSS version is), compression. On a bass, IMHO, effects are not really necessary, but sometimes add a little sparkle or interest to the tone.

For guitar, effects are much more appropriate in many circumstances but that's a different story.

Edited by paul_c2
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I've been playing for 31 years and didn't use effects until about 3 years ago. I bought a small board and was mostly using a bit of chorus on a few slower songs. I also had the Tech21 Ampeg simulator pedal that I'd leave on all the time through my Ampeg rig. I then changed to Orange and my rig sounds better without those effects so I have wound up going full circle.

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On 30/11/2019 at 19:47, paul_c2 said:

On a bass, IMHO, effects are not really necessary, but sometimes add a little sparkle or interest to the tone.

I have to say that I do not disagree: most of the stuff that I should be able to produce, can be done with the bass and me. There is a lot of stuff that is done in the studio and some of the stuff includes reverb, compression, distortion, envelope filtering and so on.

As the stomp effects are pretty reasonably priced today, I see no reason not to use them. The big thing is, which ones work with the instrument.

I have few fx boards. One is for my hi-Z fretless. One is for my lo-Z basses and one for experimenting (synth etc.).

I did not think about effects so much, except that OC-2 when Mr. Palladino came out with Paul Young. But later on I have started to think that they are just tools, so why not to use them?

As I have some background in acoustics and broadcasting, I looked for a X-over and they are probably the best thing related to fx. When the effected signal does not touch the low frequencies, there is a possibility to drive the effects further. And now effects are more fun than ever before.

Try it, you'll like it.

Edited by itu
funny sentence fixed
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I use a Tech 21 Para Driver as an always-on eq/Drive/DI. No matter what rig I’m using I know that FOH gets what I want it to. I’d happily use any effects that songs require, but my current band is strictly the same sound all the way, touch of Drive when digging in (so all the time given my playing style) and that’s it.

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I’ve pretty much always used effects. 
By far the ones I use the most are overdrive; I have 3 channels of varying degrees of filth on my board. Occasionally I’ll use chorus, but only on covers to replicate the recorded sound.

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I have a line 6 m13 with hundreds of effect combinations. Other than using a bit of reverb and the tuner I've never found a practical use for it yet. Now it lives in a box in the corner of the music room. 

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On 30/11/2019 at 22:14, itu said:

I did not think about effects so much, except that OC-2 when Mr. Palladino came out with Paul Young. But later on I have started to think that they are just tools, so why not to use them?

That was also the reason I bought the OC2 I had seen it in Bass Player back in early 90s. Marcus Miller and Sting were also mentioned as users so I thought I would give it a spin. I barely touched it. 

I had thought about chorus, dirt pedals and envelope filters but I was just worried it would just be like that Boss pedal turned on once and then just back in the box. I have never felt the need when I have been gigging to add sounds. But I was just really curious if you guys used it a lot or just the odd song. I might look into drive pedals that seems to be the most likely pedal I would use. 

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Do I need effects? Nope, absolutely not. 

Bass --> amp & cab works absolutely fine. You really don't need anything in between (other than a tuner). 

Pedals don't make you a better bass player, but they can add delicious colour and variety to our sound and provide a heap of creative sonic fun.

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Yes and no. (Ignoring compression which I always like).

Playing a set of Otis Redding tunes - nope.

Playing a modern set with Muse, Jamiroquai, RHCP etc - yes.

 

It all depends on the song.

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i agree with Fretmeister it totally depends on the situation.

Americana backing band i play in: no pedals. Bass to amp

Stoner, Doom Band i play in: Fuzz pedal always on, VT bass always on (so i dont have to push the amp to break up to get the sound i want)

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5 hours ago, fretmeister said:

Playing a modern set with Muse, Jamiroquai, RHCP etc - yes.

When I'm capable of laying down a Jamiroquai bass line fluently, I'll get back to you on this...probably about the same time as you get your Boss SY-1 pedal in 2021 and we can compare notes. 😁

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There’s pedals which can enhance a sound or make it more pleasing to you as a player/performer and if you can make pedals work in the music you play more power to you.
 

Early days I never used effects as I was poor and spent the money on things like food. Then I got a drive pedal as one of the tunes we played sounded better with drive.
 

Fast forward to being in a 6 piece band and I had three types of drive because the songs they had written used various degrees of filth. 
 

Fast forward to today and I use a couple of effects - some occasional drive, an eq and a comp - which adds a nice little something but I generally play the songs in my covers band that suit the style of the band with occasional dirt on a few songs. If my band was an electronic band and I needed that type of sound I’d use what got me that sound but as it stands I don’t ‘need’ effects but I like what my small collection does for me and my ears on a gig. 

Edited by krispn
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I've been using effects on the bass pretty much since I got my first one back in 1981, but then I also play guitar and synthesisers and I've always been interested in "sound".

These days I run a Line6 Helix which give me everything I need and allows me to tailor my bass sound to fit into each individual song for both my bands that have very different overall sounds (and for which I use very different basses).

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I've been playing bass for about 45 years (minus a few breaks here and there along the way) and have never used any effects pedals. My Ashdown amps have sub-octave and compression built in, but I never use them. I'm not against effects, but view it is just more stuff to buy, store, plug in, etc. which I don't have a need for. 

No band I have played has ever asked me to use effects to change the sound of my bass, so I must be on the right track.

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I do the odd solo (fretted and fretless) looping gig, and I like to use lots of FX. Comes from being a reformed guitar player.

Playing in my band I use only octaver and envelope follower, courtesy of my Zoom B3n, which is brilliant.

I do like FX on fretless, all the same.

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Use? A bit.

Need? No.

Over the years with Cherry White, I added a Tubescreamer as a boost for solos, and a Big Muff for a couple of songs which were recorded with heavily distorted basslines. Both were off for the majority of a set, and the night we left my pedal bag back at the studio, I reassured myself that I hadn't become dependent on them. Useful, but not essential.

 

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