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Old 12-08-2006, 08:30 AM   #1
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Hi all. Got to say I know bugger all about effects and rigs. I currently have just a Boss DS1 distortion, an old dunlop crybaby and a Zoom G1 multi-effects. But what I'd like to do is build it up a bit until I've got everything I need to be pretty diverse.

Question 1: Does having a multi-effects make having 300 zillian different pedals obselete? The G1 seems to have everything I need, but if it does take away the need for all the pedals, how come all the cover bands I see quite often are never using multi effects? Is there anything else I should get?

Question 2: I don't keep the crybaby hooked up all the time because it seems to completely bugger my sound. Is there something i'm doing wrong, or is there something I can do to reduce the change in sound? Or is the crybaby just not very good?
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Old 12-08-2006, 12:00 PM   #2
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multifx units are ok for someone on a tight budget but the sound quality is nowhere near that of the individual stomp boxes (having said that, both adam and edge use line 6 pods)

i must admit though, the latest zoom pedals aint too shabby, i have both the b2 and g2.1u and they serve me well
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Old 12-10-2006, 03:06 PM   #3
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Old 12-10-2006, 07:23 PM   #4
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Pro's multi-FX:
- Lots of sounds on tight budgets. This is not to be underestimated. I strongly recommend getting a good multi-FX if you're starting as a guitarist.
- One stomp switching, so no rush tapdancing. You try switching on and off a whole series of separate stompboxes when going from a verse to a chorus. It can be a bloody nightmare. Especially if you get your timing wrong or your space on stage is tight.
- A single multi-FX takes less space on cramped stages. And since most of us don't get to play stadiums that's a big plus. On my last gig, once I had my rack, guitars, midi-controlers and pedals set up I had about less then a square meter to move in.

Con's multi-FX:
- Each brand stompbox has its own character. Even if they supposed to be the same kind of effect. So you get to pick and choose which you like. With multi-FX the manufacturer picks and chooses them for you. So the mix will never as good as you would have gotten with separate stompboxes.
- Cheap multi-effects=cheap electronics=a sound which is never as good as with quality stompboxes.
- Digital modelers multi-FX tend to sound less good on tube amps. The Pod XT I once had sounded flat on a tube amp, so you need to get a transistor amp instead. Which are normally inferior to tube amps.
- Stompboxes tend to have a better analog feel and sound then multi-FX. Often the best stompboxes are vintage ones, as the trend these days seems to be as cheap as possible. At the expense of quality.

As for your cry-baby, it's probably a tone sucker because they don't have true bypass. Meaning, when you switch them off part of your sound still gets lost. Solution, get a wah with true bypass.
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Old 12-11-2006, 05:55 AM   #5
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Well, i've been doing my research, and i've realised that the Zoom is about the cheapest and nastiest multiFX you can get your hands on, but then, while I am a pretty good guitarist i'm not gonna be gigging or recording anytime soon because I just haven't got time, so I am fairly happy with it. For instance, the delay and reverb is pretty useful and I've come up with some cool Edge type sounds. The patches that aren't very good are the distortion sounds. They do sound tinny and cheap. So I went back to using my DS-1 for distortion, but to my ears, I hate that to, so I've been using the distortion on my amp, which sounds much more authentic and there are no horrible buzzes or clicks...
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Old 12-11-2006, 08:41 AM   #6
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Well, the reason why your DS-1 sounds less then stellar may be your amp. Is it a tube amp or transistor? Because some effects, even real quality ones, sound optimal on tube amps. And then there are the various cheap components Boss uses in their pedals. That's why they are so affordable. Which is also why there exists tons of mods to improve the sound of various pedals, especially the DS-1, you'll be amazed how many there are out there.
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Old 12-11-2006, 10:17 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Muad'zin
Well, the reason why your DS-1 sounds less then stellar may be your amp. Is it a tube amp or transistor? Because some effects, even real quality ones, sound optimal on tube amps. And then there are the various cheap components Boss uses in their pedals. That's why they are so affordable. Which is also why there exists tons of mods to improve the sound of various pedals, especially the DS-1, you'll be amazed how many there are out there.
Transistor. Brand new actually and I do like it - it does the job for my purposes. Obviously, I would have preffered a tube amp, but I had to look at the best I could get for my budget and I am happy with it. It's just some of the distortion patches on my Zoom aren't quite to my taste I guess...
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Old 12-11-2006, 05:42 PM   #8
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I guess that explains the less then stellar performance of the DS-1. Which is generally not that bad of a distortion pedal. But if you're happy with your current rig, all the more power to ya.

I still recommend taking your DS-1 to store, or a friend, who has a tube amp just to hear how it sounds then.
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Old 12-12-2006, 04:34 AM   #9
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Yeah, I've always been kinda puzzled by the DS-1. I've always thought, how can one of the most popular pedals of all time sound so bad? I would like to try it on a tube, to hear the difference...
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Old 12-18-2006, 04:02 AM   #10
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Hey, Muad'zin. Have actually managed to get the DS1 sounding alot better now, by just toning everything down and turning the level down. Was using way to much distortion I think. Seeing as you seem to be the authority on these sort of things, I was wondering if you could answer a couple more things for me? I'm looking to buy some top quality cables to help my sound even more. Need some short ones for the rig, and a couple of long ones. What are the best makes? Also, looking to finish off with a decent yet reasonably affordable whammy/wah pedal. I have a crybaby, which everyone seems to rave about for some reason, but seeing as it doesn't have true bypass, I think it's junk. What would you recommend getting?
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Old 12-18-2006, 04:48 PM   #11
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For short cables I use George L cables. From what I gather you don't get them in regular stores but they are custom made for you in specialty stores. For which I usually travel to this shop I know in the boonies. They aren't cheap though, especially the plugs. I think you can also order plugs and cable online.

For longer cables I haven't yet found the right brand yet. If possible I want to go wireless in the future anyway. There's to much cable mess on stage for me anyway.

I'm not sure if there still is a separate whammy/wah pedal out there. Usually everybody gets a separate wah and the Digitech whammy WH-4. Digitech used to have the XP-100 which was a combo between the two, I still have one, but I prefer separate pedals. There is some debate regarding which version of the Whammy is superior, the current re-issue model, the WH-4, or the original WH-1 which Edge uses. Some say the new one sounds to digital. IMHO I don't think it matters much unless you are one of those people who have perfect hearing. Still, if you come across an original WH-1, go for that one.

As for wah's, I also own a crybaby. I plan on getting a http://www.buildyourownclone.com/wah.html in the future. It has true bypass, and as somebody who likes to build modelkits I like the idea of building my own effect. But it takes some soldering skill.

The best advice still is to go around shops and just try stuff out. There are plenty of wah pedals around and some of them are bound to have true bypass. Trying does not equal having to buy if its a good shop. And if they do raise a fuzz then you don't want to spend any money there anyway. You can never try out stuff to much.
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Old 12-20-2006, 11:05 PM   #12
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Re: the wah pedal ... the Ibanez Weeping Demon is both more affordable and much better sounding/more versatile than any CryBaby model.
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Old 12-21-2006, 02:48 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by tommycharles
Re: the wah pedal ... the Ibanez Weeping Demon is both more affordable and much better sounding/more versatile than any CryBaby model.
I will have a look for one of these. Seems to have some good reviews online...
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Old 12-21-2006, 02:50 AM   #14
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Oh and Muad'zin, thanks for the further advice. Brought some pirhana cables in the end. Definately the best cables i've ever had and the shop guy says the're pretty damned good. Just building my own pedal board now...!
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