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Old 09-26-2010, 09:56 AM   #1
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Stompbox/Rack switcher

I'm nowhere near having Edge's rack equipment and tend much more towards stompboxes rather than racks and im looking for a good controller that manages both. Things like the Voodoo Lab Ground Control are MIDI only and are also very expensive alternatives for only managing 10-12 stompboxes (mainly Boss and EHX pedals) and 2-3 racks (Korg A3, etc.)! I've found some alternatives that can manage both and am obviously looking for an alternative with more loops than MIDI ports. I think any of these will work and was just curious if some of you have some experience with any of them:

Voodoo Lab - Pedal Switcher�
Would only really make sense in addition to a Commander, otherwise it's just a bypass alternative without using the stompboxes directly

EFFECTS CONTROLLER
Any experience with this one? It looks like being a bargain.

Rocktron - PatchMate Loop 8 Floor

Loopholic

The Official Musicom Lab Web Site
Think this would be the best alternative

Octa

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I know things like the Ground Control and Liquid Foot Jr. are great controllers, but I only have a few stompboxes and even less Racks to justify the price of those. Any other alternatives are also welcome!

Cheers for your help and input!
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Old 09-27-2010, 02:05 AM   #2
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As a user of the Voodoo Labs Ground Control and GCX Audio Switcher, I couldn't rate them highly enough! They are not overly expensive for midi and yet they are very easy to use/built tough.

Those products you are looking at may even cost close to the Voodoo labs stuff. Only thing you would need is to get two GCX switchers to handle all your pedals, but that'd be cool right?
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Old 09-27-2010, 04:42 AM   #3
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In fact, if you wanna control rack AND pedal stuff, I think that midi really is the only option to get the full functionality from each unit.

Imagine having all your stuff set up in effects loops, but then having to swap the settings on each rack unit etc every time you wanted to use them. The beauty of midi is that it'll do everything for you in a single floor board.
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Old 09-27-2010, 05:22 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quadcaster View Post
In fact, if you wanna control rack AND pedal stuff, I think that midi really is the only option to get the full functionality from each unit.
I'm a bit of a MIDI/controller newbie, so I've gotta ask: It's possible to control stompboxes (e.g. BOSS, EHX) with the Voodoo Lab Ground Control or any other MIDI controller?! Or do you mean have a MIDI controller and hook up something like the GCX (which works as the controller for the stompboxes) to the Ground Control?

Cheers for your input and help!
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Old 09-27-2010, 08:25 AM   #5
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The midi controller (Ground control) only tells other midi devices what to do and doesnt really do much itself. Obviously a GC by itself would be absoloutly useless.

You would need to hook up something like the GCX, which is essentially a midi rack version of the TB audio loopers you listed at the begining of this thread.

As I'm sure you've realised, with the true bypass loopers you put each analog effect into an effects loop by itself and then you can access all the pedals like that. With the GC and GCX, you would have all your analog effects in a draw in your rack with the GCX and your rack effects with each of the analog effects in its own effects loop which would all be triggered by the GC.

I run a bunch of analog pedals through my GCX and also control my Line 6 M13 (which I have sitting on top of my rack) with the GC. Only effects I have on the floor now are my Wah, Rotovibe and Whammy (Whammy also controlled by midi)
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Old 09-27-2010, 08:49 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quadcaster View Post
The midi controller (Ground control) only tells other midi devices what to do and doesnt really do much itself. Obviously a GC by itself would be absoloutly useless.

You would need to hook up something like the GCX, which is essentially a midi rack version of the TB audio loopers you listed at the begining of this thread.

As I'm sure you've realised, with the true bypass loopers you put each analog effect into an effects loop by itself and then you can access all the pedals like that. With the GC and GCX, you would have all your analog effects in a draw in your rack with the GCX and your rack effects with each of the analog effects in its own effects loop which would all be triggered by the GC.

I run a bunch of analog pedals through my GCX and also control my Line 6 M13 (which I have sitting on top of my rack) with the GC. Only effects I have on the floor now are my Wah, Rotovibe and Whammy (Whammy also controlled by midi)
Gotcha, thanks for the help! Seems like I have some money saving to do. But it'll be worth it, tired of all the pedals spread on the floor...
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Old 09-27-2010, 07:36 PM   #7
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I used to do that and I had problems even though I didn't have all that many pedals!

I found myself wanting to change to a completely different sound but being limited by how many pedals I could push on and off at the same time. Definetly didn't work. I now push one button and every parameter of my sound can change.
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Old 09-27-2010, 07:52 PM   #8
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I personally have the GC Pro with GCX units. I know they're quite expensive but I find they're definitely worth it. I may upgraded to a Liquid Foot if the need requires it. But anyway, here's a thought: often on ebay you can get the DMC Ground Control and DMC GCX for quite a bit cheaper. I think they were the predecessor to the newer Voodoo Lab stuff. You could also get the pedal switcher and commander then upgrade as the funds come.

I'd stay away from the octaswitch though. I've never used it and never heard of it but those dip switches look nasty. They even post a disclaimer on the site - "do us both a favour and cover the DIP with a bit of tape to ensure nothing happens to the DIP switch when you are not looking……like an errant hand, or a flood of beer"
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Old 09-28-2010, 02:38 PM   #9
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Thx for the help, I'll look around and see what I'll go for. The GC/GCX is very tempting and looks like it'll be worth the money.
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Old 10-01-2010, 11:39 AM   #10
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I've always found that the main advantage of a rack is that you can switch everything with a single stomp. Plus people who use racks tend to come up with ways to hook everything up as simple as possible, so no endless patching of cables. The downside to me is that there is less flexibility. No changing effects orders on the fly, less fiddling with knobs as you have to start programming midi commands first. Its very much a rig meant for touring, not improvisation.

The main advantage of a pedal board is that it gives you that flexibility to swap things around, go on your knees and start fiddling with knobs and buttons to see what whacky sounds you can create. The downside is that even with a well set up pedal board there's still a hell of a lot tap dancing and changing presets between songs. And some people use no pedal board at all and have to patch everything up each and every time you go out and play. It's very much a rig meant for jamming in the rehearsal room or recording.

As I see it each has its strengths and weaknesses.
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Old 10-27-2010, 03:45 AM   #11
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I've a GCP, GCX, Pedal Switcher system by voodoo lab.
MIDI goes GCP-->Pedal Switcher-->GCX
The pedal switcher works like an extension of the GCP, GCP recognizes the Pedal Switcher as an a half GCX (loops from 1 to 4).

In my stuff GCX is in the rack and its 8 loops are connected to 5 stompboxes and 3 midi devices.

Pedal Switcher is on the pedalboard and its 4 loops are connected to pedals that need direct control (wah, kay fuzz clone, whammy IV, boss rc2 looper).

Any patch I create (effects on/off and midi program changes to midi devices in the rack and whammy on the ground) can be named and saved on the GCP.

It tooks me a year and a half to project and buy all these things...but now I'm very satisfied... so I've started to save money to buy a vintage vox ac30
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Old 11-11-2010, 03:35 PM   #12
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custom audio electronics

hello, i have just bought a switcher with 10 loops from bob bradshaw and also pedalboard RS-5. he can make exactly what you want.
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