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My FX Loop is good but can't I skip it?


alanfc

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????

If I'm using a Delay primarily for clean sounds, how about using the delay straight in line before the amp, rather than through the FX loop? I'd be going against the principle of "time-based effects in the loop only".

 

My delay (digital) is used with dirty sounds about 20% of the time, and there only for effect in chaotic sections of songs where my tone isn't totally exposed.

 

Of course I got this idea and have no access to a =loud= space to compare it in....

 

I want to Simplify setup and tear down. OK, I know making the two extra connections doesn't take that long, but I've found that setting up and tearing down in the dark with little time is quite agitating...don't need that. Also, my FX loop has send and return volumes and that scrambles my brain a bit. I know what the intended factory setting for unity gain is, and that I can goose the Return level for a bit of Master volume boost, but dammit I just don't want to mess with it anymore. I just have 3 pedals, a solo boost, a compressor, and a Delay.

 

So do any of you choose not to use your FX loop? And why?

 

thanks.

Rivera + Fender Strat
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Try it both ways. If you can't tell the difference just stick the delay in front of the amp.

 

With my particular guitars I always use the loop for my chorus & delay pedals. The sound difference is night and day. Very wimpy effects level & guitar tone when I stick 'em between the guitar & amp.

 

Any gain altering device (distortion, compressor, etc..) always goes in front of the amp because they are not designed to take a preamp level signal. I experimented with sticking a distortion in the effects loop once and things got very weird, very fast.

Mudcat's music on Soundclick

 

"Work hard. Rock hard. Eat hard. Sleep hard. Grow big. Wear glasses if you need 'em."-The Webb Wilder Credo-

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In the stone ages, when digital delays were first becoming available, my amp didn't have an FX loop, so I just sat the thing on top of the amp, last in line after the fuzz, flange & wah. We weren't exactly playing new age/easy jazz/baroque music, so any "less than pristine" sounds were not a big deal.

 

Make sure your delay has input and output level adjustment so you can balance the gain, and watch out for the dry/wet mix so you don't drown in a sea of echo. You'll find that the wet (effected) level will need to suprisingly low to allow decent clarity.

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I've run both ways on my Marshall (the only amp I own with an effects loop), and I prefer the time-based effects in front of the amp.

 

They run that way by necessity on the Bassman and Pro Jr., and I think it sounds great in all instances (IMHO, of course).

www.ruleradio.com

"Fame is like death: We will never know what it looks like until we've reached the other side. Then it will be impossible to describe and no one will believe you if you try."

- Sloane Crosley, Village Voice

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Originally posted by daddyelmis:

I've run both ways on my Marshall (the only amp I own with an effects loop), and I prefer the time-based effects in front of the amp.

 

They run that way by necessity on the Bassman and Pro Jr., and I think it sounds great in all instances (IMHO, of course).

Yeh but when you use the amp's distortion,the

delay in front of the amp, it magnifies the

delay be on control.

The story of life is quicker then the blink of an eye, the story of love is hello, goodbye.
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Originally posted by DARKLAVA:

How do you run into the effects loop?What plug goes where....me stupid please help :wave:

On (most likely) the back of the amp, there will be a pair of jacks (probably 1/4") that will be labled something like "Effects Out" (or "Send" or something similar) and "Effects Return" (again, diiferent amps may be labled differntly, but the idea should be pretty obvious). Run a patch cord from the "send" to the input of your effects unit, then run a second patch cord from the output of the effects unit to the "return" jack.

Voilá!

May all your thoughts be random!

- Neil

www.McFaddenArts.com

www.MikesGarageRocks.com

 

 

 

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Originally posted by DARKLAVA:

How do you run into the effects loop?What plug goes where....me stupid please help :wave:

my FX loop Send from the amp, goes into the IN on the delay pedal, then the OUT on the Delay pedal goes into the FX Return on the amp

-----

 

the reasoning I've always heard is that running time-based FX before any sort of gain/distortion stage is 'not pleasing'.

 

but since my delay is only really used with cleans I was hoping I could skip it.

 

of course I can't try it at band volume until next rehearsal (2 weeks off !)

 

my Delay (Boss DD-3) does not have in&out levels on it. Technically, is there something about a Delay that influences my signal going into the amp? In an undesirable way. I don't know what I'm talking about, but are there impedance/line level issues?

 

thanks

Rivera + Fender Strat
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Originally posted by DARKLAVA:

Originally posted by daddyelmis:

I've run both ways on my Marshall (the only amp I own with an effects loop), and I prefer the time-based effects in front of the amp.

 

They run that way by necessity on the Bassman and Pro Jr., and I think it sounds great in all instances (IMHO, of course).

Yeh but when you use the amp's distortion,the

delay in front of the amp, it magnifies the

delay be on control.

I refer to my earlier comment that the wet mix needs to be surprisingly low. I usually end up somewhere around 10-15% and the high end of that range can start sounding like spaceship effects.
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My Delay pedal has a knob for amount of effect/wet-dry. So thats good

 

aside from the distortion/gain stage I won't be using it for, there's no tech/sonic reason why the delay will sound bad? Its down to taste?

 

thanks

Rivera + Fender Strat
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Originally posted by billster:

Originally posted by DARKLAVA:

Originally posted by daddyelmis:

I've run both ways on my Marshall (the only amp I own with an effects loop), and I prefer the time-based effects in front of the amp.

 

They run that way by necessity on the Bassman and Pro Jr., and I think it sounds great in all instances (IMHO, of course).

Yeh but when you use the amp's distortion,the

delay in front of the amp, it magnifies the

delay be on control.

I refer to my earlier comment that the wet mix needs to be surprisingly low. I usually end up somewhere around 10-15% and the high end of that range can start sounding like spaceship effects.
At least for the Marshall, the time effects are greatly magnified on the drive channel when USING the loop, less so when in front of the amp. This is main reason I don't use the loop. On the DSL201, the loop has its own mix pot, and is parallel.

 

Billster is correct, though, especially on the drive channel. I've not uncovered any reasonable explanation as to why the effects are so pronounced in the overdrive channel versus the clean channel.

www.ruleradio.com

"Fame is like death: We will never know what it looks like until we've reached the other side. Then it will be impossible to describe and no one will believe you if you try."

- Sloane Crosley, Village Voice

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Hell, if you want to sound like Jimmy Page (live), putting the delay in front of the amp's input will do fine (listen to the way his "echoes" have a distinct distorted sound, most notably on stuff like the more recent live Plant and Page ooutings). I'd wager his is in front of the input, too.

 

There really is no right or wrong way- just what does what you want and like, and what doesn't!

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

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OK so now I've just tested this with the Delay, pushing the limits of my apartment neighbors to get close to full band volume

 

Cleans were indistinguishable, although there was a lag of about 45 sec. between plugging and uplugging to the loop and out of the loop so side by side comparison was not possible. But to me they were equal.

 

Distorted however, was a different story. As it is, when I use clean sounds, there inevitably is the chorus or the solo where I need a big and dirty sound. No metal ballad action here, but just a richer bigger backing thats not so upfront as the clean sound. Switching over to the Channel 1/Raawk channel on my Rivera has always been a bit unsatisfying with the bridge+neck pickup combo I use for cleans. And I'm not going to flick the pickup switch to a different pickup for every time I do this. So I went back to what I was doing before with Clean-Hard songs, using a distortion pedal. I fine tuned it with lows-hi's,Gain, level, etc, specifically for going into big lush chorus parts using the pickup combo I use for cleans. With Delay. Worked just fine!. I will test this more and will test again for real at next practice. So far, so good

 

thanks for all the notes

Rivera + Fender Strat
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For myself, I much prefer delay or chorus in the loop rather than into the front end of the amp more often than not, but it's a question of taste. On the other hand, flangers sound kinda cool to me fuzzed out by the pre-amp, and tremolo units and Uni-vibe type stuff sound great to me in front. The things the preamp does to a delay's repeats, sound really trashy to me. But some folks like "trashy". If you are going for an end-of-the-World-Gotterdamerung-full-on-balls-to-the-wall sonic explosion, I can see where it would be cool to have the delay in front of what is generating the distortion.

The only thing I see as a problem with it is noise. Even some expensive rack delay units are noisy of you preamplify their signal. IF you don't have true-bypass switching on the unit, it means it's noisy even when the effect is off. If you hate "buzz" like i do, you'll stick that sucker in the loop, so the noise isn't preamplified with the signal.

TRying stuff out and seeing what you can so with the noise it makes is half the fun of working with effects. Have a blast, dude.

Always remember that you are unique. Just like everyone else.

 

 

 

 

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The way I set up my rig is that I have an ADA MP-1 preamp (which does have an FX loop I don't use) with stereo outs, feeding a Roland DEP-5 delay with stereo ins and outs, to a QSC stereo power amp. I don't have the problem with the echo going ape with the overdrive because the tone shaping takes place before it, and the power amplification after. I think with a regular amp, the drive tone & power are simultaneous and help the echo go overboard.

 

The loop is only mono, so I skip it.

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  • 11 months later...

UPDATE-

 

Hey I'm back , this isn't going away anytime soon- a new twist to run by you all-

 

I went to trying one channel, no FX loop.

I was using the compressor as channel switcher (comp with low level for cleans, then punch it an voila dirty tone) this is now out, and I may bring in a dirt pedal of some kind to do this.

 

Keeping my amp slightly overdriven for my type of cleans (not crystal clear type clean),, and then punching the dirt box for my main heavy tone. That will fill the channel switcher role.

 

oh yeah, and I've dropped the EQ pedal out of the lineup above too.

 

So on to dirt pedals then.

The number of choices are insane I know.

Which dirt box could we say has the most tone control parameters?

My amp is a Rivera 55w with EL-34 and the single channel I'll be using is channel 1, the "british" channel.

I'm looking for classic Marshall and maybe a little of the new Steve Stevens type dirty sounds.

I will research dirt pedals for sure, unsure on OD or distortion.

 

SO the main question, which OD/Distortion has the =most= tone control knobs??

 

Thanks alot

Rivera + Fender Strat
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Originally posted by Mudcat:

Try it both ways. If you can't tell the difference just stick the delay in front of the amp.

 

With my particular guitars I always use the loop for my chorus & delay pedals. The sound difference is night and day. Very wimpy effects level & guitar tone when I stick 'em between the guitar & amp.

 

Any gain altering device (distortion, compressor, etc..) always goes in front of the amp because they are not designed to take a preamp level signal. I experimented with sticking a distortion in the effects loop once and things got very weird, very fast.

Hrmm, I have an FX loop that never gets used on my Peavey Classic 30W. I tried feeding my entire effects chain though the send/return on the amp's FX loop. I lost too much of the amp's tone through this process.

 

Refering back to another post:

 

http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?/ubb/get_topic/f/19/t/012049.html

 

Would this be the signal chain:

 

Guitar (Ibanez Artcore) > Effects board (as mentioned in the post) > FX loop > Amp

 

Would I be advantaged by moving the chorus to the FX loop and still get the same sound? Would it make the chorus sound brighter (so that I could really notice the pitch notches). Just wondering. I am in the mood to shift around my pedals. Looking for that tone.

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I think it depends on the brand of effects and the nature of the tone you are after.

 

I am using a Danelectro Cool Cat chorus, a Danecho, Phase 90, and a cry baby.

 

I run them all in front, though I think the delay sounds better through the loop, I am too lazy and the cords turn into the spaghetti factory and I trip over them and then get confused. Through the front sounds more vintage for an anolog delay.

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