Author Topic: Picked up a bass, blinked and it's been a year away from Madbean. Back with ques  (Read 1310 times)

bscur

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After a lifetime of guitar, I picked up a bass about a year ago. I had been building a decent amount of pedals for guitar, but learning bass took up that time. So, a year later, I'm curious about pedals for bass. Of the guitar pedals I built, I've found these useful for the bass-
Kraken, Smoothie, Pork Barrel and especially an older 2-knob Bloviator (which I didn't like at all with the guitar). Lots of the pedals didn't really translate, at least to the R&B, blues, funk, classic rock stuff I play.

Oddly, EQ seems to be the biggest effect and tone shaper I'm interested in for bass. So, are there any pedal projects out there for EQ, especially for bass? Also, has anyone switched over to bass and found certain pedals useful from the DIY community? I'd be interested in some pedal versions of preamps if those are out there.

lars

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Since you're into R&B and Funk, there isn't really anything that compares to an original EHX Polyphase for that funky envelope filter phaser sound. It sounds fantastic on a bass! I don't know if the reissue sounds as good. Eventually there will be a diy project on madbean for the polyphase.
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madbean

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Lots of pedals can be adapted for bass if you are willing to experiment. A good rule of thumb is to factor up capacitance values by a factor of 2 to 10. Particularly input coupling caps and tone/filtering caps. For example, if an input cap is 22n or 47n, go up to 220n or 470n. Another example: active gain stage like the TS where the mid frequencies are clipped centered at 720Hz by a 4k7 and 47n cap. Change the cap to 220n or 470n. Use the formulas excel workbook posted here to figure out frequency response.

But, this is just a starting point. One drawback with trying to fit a guitar pedal with a bass rig is so many bass guitars are active these days. So, lowering circuit input impedance can actually be a benefit rather than a drawback.

Someday I will design a few projects just for bass. I really should....even though I've been playing guitar for almost 30 years a lot of my gigging experience was a bass player. Maybe someone can hip us to some existing bass pedal projects out there now.
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Haberdasher

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yeah, bass players seem to like pres/eqs a lot

I don't play bass myself, but if it was me I'd try
DAM Meathead for fuzz, woolly mammoth also good
Clone Theory for the New Order sound, if you're into that
I think there was a fulldrive version for bass if you wanna try OD
An optical comp- my store has the Zirconia project (Diamond),  but there are others.
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thesameage

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Iím a bass player and work for a bass builder.

I have been back and forth on all of this for years.

Currently, Iím liking an old boss octave>civil war muff with blend>DOD 250 clone>smoothie>source audio envelope filter

I have a bass zirconium comp that Iím almost done with to add to this.

Does the kraken work for you? I never felt like it was deep or thick enough.

brucer

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Hey JR.  Interested in your bass pedal ideas.  Curious though, would the circuits you mentioned be stock BOMs or with components tweaked for bass.  I'm not much of a guitar player and even less of a bass player, but interested in adding some compression, drive and octave or chorus options for a Jazz Bass.  Thanks.

thesameage

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Instrad of an eq, i just go with an onboard pre. I have a 3 band nordstrand i really like and a 2 Band Sadowsky. Diff tools for different basses.

blearyeyes

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Guitar player but love to play Bass as well.
I have a 5 string Ibanez active which covers my needs for EQ. Built the Zirconium to bass specs. Just havnt tried it with the bass yet. Sounds great on Git.  I'll be building brejnas bass driver and a distortion soon. All that to say Iím interested in building a pedalboard for bass. I'll be watching this thread.  (Hint hint Brian 8-)
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Matmosphere

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I play bass about as much as guitar theses days if not more. My $.02 is that what type of pickup and amp youíre using matters more on bass than on guitar. the woolly mammoth is an easy build that sounds cool on bass.

I play a Music Man sixty five through an old Bassman cab. Works for both guitar and bass and in my experience lots of stock guitar pedals sound good on bass through it. Muffs sound great, rats sound good if youíre into that sound, and a decent tubescreamer can really rip. Itís not to say that tweaking the circuits wouldnít make them sound even better, but for me (because  Iím always switching back and forth) it means I donít need twice as many pedals.

Itís a different story if youíre playing through a modern solid state bass amp imho. Modern bass amps donít play as well with unmodded guitar pedals in my experience.

Try out some stuff, use your ears and see what you think. Remember things are going to sound different in a band mix than on their own.

bscur

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Thanks for all the advice, I'll look at modding a few of my pedals. The Kraken works great for me with bass, although it has a big volume boost. I get better results with my 3 Leaf GR2 than my Naughty Fish. I did build a Wooly Mammoth Clone that is monstrous and huge, but I don't use it much. I wanted a real gated fuzz bass sound to try and get a synth tone. The Bloviator is really amazing for the bass. Thanks again for the direction.

thesameage

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Thanks for all the advice, I'll look at modding a few of my pedals. The Kraken works great for me with bass, although it has a big volume boost. I get better results with my 3 Leaf GR2 than my Naughty Fish. I did build a Wooly Mammoth Clone that is monstrous and huge, but I don't use it much. I wanted a real gated fuzz bass sound to try and get a synth tone. The Bloviator is really amazing for the bass. Thanks again for the direction.

I never got good results from my kraken, but glad it works for you! I have a nautilus with a blend and can sometimes get a great sound, but it's hard to find again if I lose it. The source audio bass envelope (I have an older one) is pretty easy to dial in every time. For a synth tone, try an octave into an envelope. The boss octave into my source audio sounds really good.

thesameage

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Hey JR.  Interested in your bass pedal ideas.  Curious though, would the circuits you mentioned be stock BOMs or with components tweaked for bass.  I'm not much of a guitar player and even less of a bass player, but interested in adding some compression, drive and octave or chorus options for a Jazz Bass.  Thanks.

Bruce, I'll PM you... got the boards from you! Thanks.

The Boss octaver is fine as is. Muff's are a journey--don't give up. I went through a lot of them to find the one that is right for me, which ended up being the civil war. Never could quite make the pharoah, green russian, ram's head, etc work for me. All good, but not for my sound. The DOD 250 has been a nice surprise for me the past few months. I fixed one for someone, but knew nothing about it. Ends up that it makes a nice light OD/dirty boost. Really gives that nice edge of distortion sound. Very worth building. The DAM Ezekial, which has a blend, is also really good for that kind of thing. I also built a bass Klon and that never really did it for me. It was always just too much gain and too loud.

The envelope filter is something that I just have had so much trouble finding just what worked. I never like to go with a commercial pedal, but the Source Audio is really good and dependable.

jimilee

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My gigging board was a soul preacher, byoc OD, bass klon, deprofundis (Grind customs) ce2 chorus klon, green Russian, cave dweller, Ross phaser clone, bloviaror. Bass wah.The only thing I modified was the phaser. Donít overthink it and use your ears.


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EBK

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There is a risk to putting a lot of stuff between your bass and amp.  Once you start widening the bandwidth of your signal, you may end up stepping right into the frequency ranges the rest of your band needs.  You may be accused of being too loud when your sound starts interfering.  It has happened to me, anyway.

Technical difficulties in abundance.  Please stand by.  ;-)

stringsthings

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Best pedal I've ever used with bass is a compressor.  Super helpful when recording.
There are several variations to try.  ( optical, OTA, VCA, ... )
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