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Discussion Starter #1
My collection of pedals continues to grow. I seem to have accumulated a collection of drives, boosters, and delays, especially.

I like trying different combinations and orders of pedals, but it's a pain to get down on the floor, switch cables around, disconnect and reconnect power supplies, etc., if I'm trying to compare sounds. I also don't want a whole bunch of pedals connected in sequence while I'm playing around because most of the time most of the pedals will be off and it will just suck tone.

What do you guys do? Do you set up a few independent pedal chains with their own power supplies, and then switch your guitar input? Do you use a pedal switching system, and if so, which one? (The good ones seem really expensive and targeted to stage use as opposed to just experimenting/fooling around). Or do you just get down on a carpet full of cables and switch things around manually until you get a sound you like?

Looking for best practices!

--- D
 

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Getting a decent board and power supply seem to free up a lot of the inconvenience. I use a couple of multi effects, which comes with its own advantages/disadvantages. I have a big project to make a case that'll accommodate both. It's a constant search but whatever you can do to make it less tedious than you can get to making fun noises.
 

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Buckle down and start. Tone suck or not. Got an idea? Try it out.
 

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I'd suggest a Boss ES-5 or ES-8, or similarly equipped loop switcher. You can re-order pedals internally, so no rewiring. You can also do parallel routing to run two pedals side-by-side instead of series, again without rewiring anything. I also have a couple MIDI pedals and use an expression pedal hooked up to the switcher to do all kinds of fun & weird things for real-time changes.

One cool experiment I recently tried resulted from using parallel routing in the ES-5. I had one part of the signal go from my dirt pedal straight to the ES-5 mixer and the output. Alongside that I went from the dirt pedal to a volume pedal to tremolo and then to the mixer and out. It basically let me fade in some tremolo as my chords sustained. I guess the same thing could be done if you had expression control over tremolo depth, except this was actually adding some volume as the tremolo faded in, so it effectively let my chords sustain longer at a louder volume.

Anyway, weird routing like that is fun and isn't something I'd bother to do if I had to rewire my board just to try it. Also, routing expression to MIDI CC is an endless source of fun experimentation. :)
 

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If I had an excuse to get an ES-8, I would buy one.

Can you control the ES-8 from a computer? Like edit the patches? Yes, there's an editor for PC and Mac.

I guess you could do that with an audio interface, too? Not easily, because guitar level is not line level.

You could get a patch panel, it could save your back at the expensive of too many cables. There is usually one for sale cheap on Kijiji.
 

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When I've bought a new pedal I want to experiment with, or am playing around with combinations, I put them on a TV table and power them all up. It's easier to make adjustments and change patches. I like to stand to play and don't really like the 'up and down' with a guitar around my neck.

That's all I got.
 

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I try stuff outside of my pedalboard, either on the floor with my amps, or with my desktop "pedalboard" using Bias FX on my Mac. I bought a Power-All to power the pedals, and it works fine.
 

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I think any player who owns more than 3 pedals can benefit by having a simple splitter/mixer, such that different sounds can be run in parallel and blended or easily compared.

For instance, if one owns a delay-based pedal of soe form that provides separate dry and wet outputs, those two outputs could be further processed separately and then blended together. Imagine a delay where the "dry" is subsequently fuzzed but the repeats are clean, or where the clean repeats are phased or flanged before mixing.
 

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It doesn't have to be quite that complicated. Six jacks - in/out, 2 send, 2 return - and two mix-level pots/knobs, and you have an enormous amount of creative power. I made a few as part of my modular unit, but I should throw a few together in stompboxes.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I do a combination of things mentioned above, but maybe you need the Patchulator! Lol, when I first saw one on Reverb, I couldn't figure out what it was. But it's exactly what you're asking about: Patchulator 8000 by Boredbrain Music - Effects Bay
I really want one of these! Any idea where I can get one in Canada? I hate buying from the states and dealing with shipping / customs! But this thing looks like a lot of fun and the kind of thing I had in mind. Besides this I think I'd have to get into a pedal switcher like a one-control or quartermaster.
 

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It's a smart little device. The only thing I don't like about it is that it is predicated on series-patching. That is, you can turn A->B->C into C->B->A, but you can't readily turn it into C->B/A in parallel, unless you have an outboard mixer.
 

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I wouldn't be so harsh. While, conceptually, yes it isn't much moe than a patch bay, functionally it can sit in one's pedalboard and permit quick re-ordering and repositioning, without having yank anything and move it around. These days, pedalbords are like Tetris and Sudoku all in one. Fitting things together, so that they all fit in the smallest possible space is tough slogging. So anything that lets you find a place for everthing and STILL move it around is a useful innovation.

In the late 80's, I built myself a rack-mount multi-FX that included a splitter,mixer,and patch-bay in the back, I could do just about anything with it.
 

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Well if you're on the market for yet another pedal, but your looking for something to experiment with in the ways discussed previously,

Nose Pedals makes some switcher pedals, with varying degrees of complexity.

You can do that whole "A>B>C to C>A>B" switching thing stated in a previous post
 

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It's a smart little device. The only thing I don't like about it is that it is predicated on series-patching. That is, you can turn A->B->C into C->B->A, but you can't readily turn it into C->B/A in parallel, unless you have an outboard mixer.
Any chance of a schematic please Mr Hammer?
For a toy for me to make in the winter months.
Cheers.


Sent from my Bathtub.....
 
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