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Envelope Filter - Which One?


Cuahtemoc

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I've been using a DOD FX25B for a few months now, and I'm finding that it isnt the style of envelope filter that I'm after - the effect is hardly noticeable in a full band setting. I really, really like the sound in Sir Psycho Sexy - anyone know which pedal Flea uses on that track? Any suggestions would be great, thankyou.
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he used an old mu-tron with an almost-dead battery. according to the interview i read around the time the album came out he was asked that very same question. he replied that he was getting that tone and sent a runner to get a new battery but kept playing. the tone turned out to be great for the parts of sir psycho that it was used on but not for much else. he also said he's never been able to duplicate it :cry:

 

but at any rate, it's a vintage mu-tron with an almost dead battery. and those things are pretty expensive, not to mention how much a vintage mu-tron will cost ya.

Eeeeeehhhhhhhhh.
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I use an Electro-Harmonix Q-tron, which I like very much. I also use it on my Rhodes piano and on my sax (when I can get it to not feedback with my sax mic). The Q-tron+ is a newer model that has a few more features that are probably worth the few extra bucks.

 

I also have an EH BassBalls, which is an envelope filter-type unit that is capable of creating very Bootsy-esque sounds. Flea used one (along with a distortion unit, I believe) on "Falling Into Grace" to achieve that extreme nastiness.

 

The EBS Bass IQ is also one that I've heard very good things about. Also the MoogerFooger low-pass filter (I personally think people just like saying "MoogerFooger" :) )

 

I buy most of my pedals on eBay, where I can re-sell them for about the same price if I decide that I don't like them. Unless you have the luxury of sitting down with a multitude of pedals and testing them out for hours on end, buying on eBay is the way to go.

All your bass are belong to us!
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I forgot to mention the Seamoon Funk Machine, which is a very popular vintage envelope filter. But if I were going vintage, I think I'd probably go with the Mu-tron III (NOT the Mu-tron III+, which is a "re-issue" that I have heard only bad things about). Vintage pedals are way overpriced, though. The Q-tron is probably the closest thing to the original Mu-tron III, as it was made to be a faithful re-creation of the Mu-tron III, pieced together by the same guy.

 

I think what I REALLY want is a Lovetone Meatball. I can't let myself dwell on it too much, though, because I don't have upwards of $500 to spend on an effects pedal. Every review of it that I've read (I unfortunately haven't even had the opportunity to see one up close) hails it as hands-down the best envelope filter out there, especially for bass. It seems to be the most complicated to operate, though, with somewhere around 10 knobs and multiple in's/out's. The really bad news is that Lovetone recently stopped making pedals, so the price of a used Meatball will most likely skyrocket to ridiculousness.

All your bass are belong to us!
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Originally posted by CupMcMali:

Would some one educate the ignorant here and tell me what an envelope filter is/does?

Well, I'll try! I tried to explain this to someone recently by doing vocal impressions, it didn't work very well...

 

The envelope filter gives the gurgly, underwater effect. I think the best and most common example is "Sir Psycho Sexy" on "Blood Sugar Sex Magik", as mentioned by Cuahtemoc and Bastid E in this post. Flea starts with a clean tone and then adds the Mutron envelope filter. You can hear the difference clearly on that track.

 

Actually, try downloading this:

http://206.252.130.254/ehx2/Catalog/19_Filters/09_Q-Tron/04_P-Funk/01_P-Funk_Space_Jam.mp3

It's got BassBalls on the bass and Q-Tron on the synth.

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I've got an original Mu-tron III, a Q-tron, and a Seamoon Funk Machine. They are very different animals. The

 

Mu-tron is by far the best, but it's a touchy little beast and I don't take it out of the house any more.

 

The Q-tron is currently on my pedalboard, as far as I'm concerned it gets one good sound and does it well.

 

The Funk Machine is another one I have retired to my front hall closet. It drastically affects your un-effected tone. It is also pretty hard to tame...it can do some wild stuff.

 

The Boss Bass-Synth pedal (I have one of those, too) has a decent envelope and a whole lot of other wacky sounds.

 

I hear good things about the EBS pedal. Also the new Digitech pedals look good. I'll try them out next week at NAMM.

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Check out the Line 6 FM4 Filter Modeler.

 

I wanted an envelope filter (also inspired in that desire by Sir Phsyco Sexy). The FM4 has excellent (I think) models of Mu-Tron as well as a load of other crazy effects. Best of all it has an onboard wet/dry mix, and you can sweep between settings with an outboard expression dooberie.

 

The FM4 will also cost you about the same as a Q-tron or a reissue Mu-Tron. It give you the sounds of either or both as well as a whole load more.

 

Buy one they're great. (I recommend combining the FM4 with a Big Muff for some crazy "sounds like the end of the world" antics.

Free your mind and your ass will follow.
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Originally posted by GrooveMouse:

I forgot to mention the Seamoon Funk Machine, which is a very popular vintage envelope filter.

 

The really bad news is that Lovetone recently stopped making pedals, so the price of a used Meatball will most likely skyrocket to ridiculousness.

wraub has a funk machine, that thing scalds. it's unreal. i''ve yet to try a meatball but i've heard nothing but good things about it.

 

as for what an envelpoe filter does, i know there's been a thread or two on that, so a search might answer all yer questions...

Eeeeeehhhhhhhhh.
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