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I’m trying to spend some more time playing bass this year. I have about 4 hours of combined bass playing experience in my entire musical “career”. I’d like to put together a small, very basic pedal board for bass and, here’s the noob question, do I need to buy bass specific pedals for reverb, overdrive, etc.? Any recommendations appreciated.

Thank you.
 

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I agree.

Anytime I see a bassist setting up a pedal board I bite my lip and wait for the Bass Balls effect, too much chorus, fuzz or compression.....

Straight into the amp please.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I agree.

Anytime I see a bassist setting up a pedal board I bite my lip and wait for the Bass Balls effect, too much chorus, fuzz or compression.....

Straight into the amp please.
I play at very low volume in my house. I never play publicly. I just want something that will add a little "grit" and "dimension" without having to shake the foundation.
 

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No you don't need bass specific pedals. That said some pedals just work better with bass than others. The main difference between reg and bass pedals boils down to one of the following things in 99% of cases:

1) blend setting (e.g. BOSS CE-2 vs CE-2B chorus) to mix some dry signal back into the the output.
2) different input filter cap points. This applies mostly to dirt pedals (dist/OD more than fuzz) which filter out the low end in order to sound 'tighter.' Many of them work for bass as is but it is a matter of preference . Some bass -specific modulation pedals also filter a lot of bass out of the effect path, and allow you mix the full freq dry back in with it (sort of 1+2 combo - e.g. MXR stereo chorus) - I never found this to my liking; the effect doesn't touch the fundamental and it's weird to me).
3) EQ points on tone controls

I use mostly guitar pedals though my chorus is a CE-2B copy (lives at about 80-90 % blend, so a CE-2 probably woulda been fine for me). I build a lot of my own pedals and I have experimented with changing input filter cap values and it makes a difference but I still like stock BOSS ODs on bass and don't bother modding them.

And don't listen to those naysayers above - of course the guy that admits he never plays electric anymore (in his NAD thread where he also asks for advise on the cheapest pedals possible, even considering Behringer stuff from Walmart ;P) - is gonna say stay away from pedals - cuz he's just into some down home hoe downs and there ain't no power out by the campfire. Depends on what the musical style is - you're not gonna shred in a country band.

Careful with reverb though. I used to be a huge amp reverb with bass guy and it can get murky. Like if you're rocking a dub then fine but otherwise a bit of short delay (+ some mild chorus approaches a reverb feel FYI) might be better.

So bust out what you already got and see what you like.
 

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If someone has 4 hours total bass playing time, I think I'd be concentrating on playing the bass rather than getting different sounds from the bass.

Sorry that's my opinion but do what you want.

I was also joking. Maybe you missed the :)?

Another commandent of bass is, "Though shalt not play the high string".
 

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Geeze, you guys. He's tryna have some fun and stimulate the economy a little, whadda buncha luddites.

Granny got most of it, but it's the same as guitar pedals: They sound different with every rig so try before you buy if you can.

You can even try whatever pedal board you have now, but some of the pedals will almost certainly chop off a big bunch of bottom end when you step on them - the more volume the worse the problem, not so bad for a home player.

I've got a bunch of stuff, I no longer sell here but a couple are on jiji and I have a lot more available if yer interested shoot me a PM.
 

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I was also joking. Maybe you missed the :)?

Another commandent of bass is, "Though shalt not play the high string".
Seriously? I think you missed the smiley, bud. I got that, but the sentiment was doubled down on so I joked right back. Also, considerring that your joke is a real thing that people actually say to bassplayers it beared a rebuttal even if you were 'just joking' ( look up “its not just a joke” for the psychology of how that, namely 'chill I was just joking' is bullshit).

And re the high string thing, you can suck it on that score too HNG^%$B#(*:D:cool::rolleyes:o_O:



Above the 12th fret too - I'm in yer spectrumz; stealing yer notz.
 

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Maybe I should clarify my comments.

I don’t like effects on bass and bass players tend to be like a kid in a candy store as soon as they get a pedalboard.
 

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LOL - and guitarists aren't?

In both cases it depends on the person - some people are more tasteful/appropriate than others and to beat up on bass players specifically is to be massively self-biased. Just stop it with the tyranny of shoulds already. There are no rules. You don't have to like it or approve.

I like a lot of pedals on both guitar and bass. Not nearly as many as some people I have seen (even some famous). It works for the kind of music I play and the guitard is into it (he's got a pretty big board too).
 
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All things in moderation. My personal rule of thumb has been little or no bass effects. By little I mean less by at least half than I would use on guitar. Very little chorus and reverb can fatten the tone lots enough, and bass distortion while it can make already indistinct tone and pitch even less distinct it often just sounds unrealistic...sometimes a signal boost is all that's needed. The Boss EQ pedal was a staple of my bass rig for years (I preferred it to the Boss guitar EQ for guitar too, due to the slider centres), it provided more than ample tone control and a volume boost if needed. The other pedal I like is a passive volume like the Ernie Ball.
 

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Maybe I should clarify my comments.

I don’t like effects on bass...
...therefore you should not use any.

Personally. I’d say to get a tuner and a good fuzz and maybe some kind of phase/flange can all be useful depending on the music you’re playing. A compressor can be very helpful too. I find that guitar effects are hit or miss. Some are great on bass. Some aren’t. You probably have a bunch of guitar effects already. I’d test drive those to see if there are any you really like on bass.
 
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...therefore you should not use.
LOL - and guitarists aren't?

In both cases it depends on the person - some people are more tasteful/appropriate than others and to beat up on bass players specifically is to be massively self-biased. Just stop it with the tyranny of shoulds already. There are no rules. You don't have to like it or approve.
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No, I don’t have to like it or approve, nor do I have to justify my posts to you.

It is what it is.

“tyranny”, LOL
 

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Discussion Starter #20
First of all, thank you for all the suggestions and advice. I really do appreciate it. There are some very knowledgeable people on this forum.

I should clarify that I am new to bass but not new to guitar and I am strictly a hobbyist--a basement player. I've played guitar for decades so it's not like I'm starting from square one when it comes to bass. I have a pretty good grasp of scales, rhythm, time signature, etc. The reason I'm asking about effects is that for the style of music I want to play it's impossible for me to get the tone I'm after at low volume. I play guitar the same way: quietly with some overdrive and a bit of reverb so that I can get that grit and dimension without scaring the neighbours or my wife :)

Thanks again, everyone.

G.
 
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