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Post new topic Effects Pedals....what order is best?
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Author Topic:  Effects Pedals....what order is best?
David Rupert


From:
Mesa, Arizona (via Mahopac, NY & Missouri).
Post Posted 10 Sep 2017 11:12 am     Reply with quote

I few months ago, I made the switch from Boss effects pedals...to TC Electronic. I wanted my next company, to be all 'true bypass.' Well, I'm so happy I did go with TC! Besides being True Bypass, for all of their pedals...most have the 'tone print' feature. At first I thought it may be just a gimmick, but it's actually a really great idea! I downloaded Albert Lee's delay & reverb settings. Using the delay & reverb together, with Albert Lee's TonePrint Settings, it's an awesome sound!

I have 3 so far.

The TC Electronic, MojoMojo™ Overdrive
TC Electronic, Flashback™ Delay
TC Electronic, Hall of Fame™ Reverb Pedal.

I was going to wait until I had more money, but I noticed they were on sale last weekend, for $99...vs. $149, at Sweetwater Sound. I couldn't resist, because of the price, & the fact I've been thinking about the Hall of Fame, for many months now. The CSR, took $10 more off. So, I got it for $90 even!! No taxes or shipping fees! They are pushing the new models of the Flashback & Hall of Fame, to the Flashback 2 & Hall of Fame 2. They are still giving full support on the original models I have. As a steel player, I wouldn't be able to use the MASH feature anyway.

I plan to get 3 more, in time. The Spark (signal booster), their Noise Gate, & Phase Shifter...in that order.

I'm very happy with this company!!

I have a question though, regarding the order of effects pedals. I know that overdrive should always be right after the guitar...so you have a full signal. I do have my overdrive, directly after the guitar, before the volume pedal. Then, I have the Delay & Reverb pedals, AFTER the Volume Pedal.

Should I have ALL pedals, before the volume pedal? I'm not sure if it's just my imagination...but the Delay & Reverb, seem to sound better, AFTER the volume pedal.

Does this make sense, to the technical guys out there?

Thank you.




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David "DJ" Rupert

"Music. Without it, life itself...would be impossible."

ZumSteel - Encore™ S-10 / 3p x 5k (Two-Tone; Red & Black Top).
Roland™ Cube 80x Amp, Hilton Volume Pedal, TC Electronics™ Flashback™ Delay, TC Electronics™ MojoMojo™ Overdrive, Peterson StroboPlus HD Tuner, D2F Covers. Evans JE-300 Amp. (in the not too distant future).

Most Importantly: the musicians hands...& soul.

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Godfrey Arthur


From:
Philippines
Post Posted 10 Sep 2017 1:10 pm     Reply with quote

Pedal order is not in stone.

Guys like Brian Setzer and Van Halen created hits with the delay first in line.

Steve Lukather would have his volume pedal after all his effects.

It depends on how you want to control your sound.

With the delay after the volume pedal, yes your repeats will continue after you shut off the volume pedal, but any sustain going on at the guitar will shut off and the delay will be the same volume even if you go quiet on your volume pedal.

With the volume pedal last you get to "duck" the whole chain of effects including the delay level so that the level/decay of the delay is also controlled.

Whatever your ears think is candy.
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Tony Prior


From:
Charlotte NC..
Post Posted 11 Sep 2017 5:26 am     Reply with quote

Well BOSS says

Compression, EQ, Drive , Modulation then TIME last. But I doubt there are any real hard and fast rules
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Bobby Nelson


From:
North Carolina, USA
Post Posted 11 Sep 2017 6:26 am     Reply with quote

I found that my DD3 didn't sound good, or work right or something was out, when I put it after my vol. So, I put it before and it works perfect.
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David Rupert


From:
Mesa, Arizona (via Mahopac, NY & Missouri).
Post Posted 11 Sep 2017 11:52 am     Thanks everyone! Reply with quote

Thanks everyone, for your input...I really appreciate it!

It's looking like it's best, to have all effects BEFORE the volume pedal??
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David "DJ" Rupert

"Music. Without it, life itself...would be impossible."

ZumSteel - Encore™ S-10 / 3p x 5k (Two-Tone; Red & Black Top).
Roland™ Cube 80x Amp, Hilton Volume Pedal, TC Electronics™ Flashback™ Delay, TC Electronics™ MojoMojo™ Overdrive, Peterson StroboPlus HD Tuner, D2F Covers. Evans JE-300 Amp. (in the not too distant future).

Most Importantly: the musicians hands...& soul.

http://www.bandmix.com/pedal-steel-75/
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Matthew Walton


From:
Denton, Texas
Post Posted 23 Sep 2017 1:18 pm     Reply with quote

Taste is subjective, so the smart-aleck answer is "experiment and do whatever you like best." Since that's super unhelpful and you came for advice, here's are my thoughts on the matter.

Short opinion: guitar -> boost -> volume -> drive -> phase -> gate -> delay -> reverb -> amp. Reasoning below.

Reverb: Think about the classic setup: guitar -> volume -> amp. Most amps have built-in reverb, which means the signal is really closer to guitar -> volume -> (reverb -> amp) (I'm ignoring where the reverb sits in the actual amp's signal chain for simplicity's sake). As Godfrey pointed out, putting reverb before the volume pedal will result in the reverb going away when you bring the volume pedal down, which will probably sound offputting and disconnected.

Delay: To be honest, delay -> reverb vs reverb -> delay is a perfect example of "experiment and decide what you like best." In my experience, delay -> reverb will result in a more mellow delay, since the definition of of each delayed note is washed out a bit by the reverb (a positive thing in my opinion). Again, this is all about what you like.

Gate: Since the purpose of a noise gate is to cut off sound below a certain volume threshold (i.e. 60 Hz hum usually), it makes sense to put it as far to the end as possible. Don't put it after the reverb and delay however, because as the reverb and delay trail off, they'll get below the gate's threshold and drop off completely, which brings us back to the "offputting and disconnected" point I made earlier.

Phase: I like to put modulation before delay/reverb so the swirling feeling gets repeated and lasts longer. I don't put it before drive pedals for a reason I'll get into below.

Drive: Drive should be fairly early in the signal chain because of intermodulation distortion. Without getting too deep into the math behind it, essentially when you play multiple notes at the same time, a third note can be "created", depending on which notes you play, especially when running into a drive pedal. You can try this phenomenon for yourself by playing a 2nd (interval) with and without drive (turn the drive all the way up for the maximum effect). You'll probably notice that playing with distortion is a lot nastier than you might expected given how single distorted notes or clean 2nds sound. If you put drive after phase (which overlays two notes on top of each other in a way), delay, and reverb, you're more likely to experience this.

Volume: Putting this before or after drive is very much another matter of personal taste. Having volume before drive means that you can vary how distorted the signal is simply by opening up the volume pedal a little more than you usually might. Having drive before volume means that the amount of distortion is relative to the guitar's output (steady amount of distortion until the guitar's natural sustain starts to die out), and you're only controlling the volume of the distorted/driven signal.

I personally go hard clipping (distortion pedal) -> volume -> soft clipping (most overdrives), but from what I've read online, all of this is weird (refer back to "whatever floats your boat").

Boost: This functions similarly to the volume/expression pedal, albeit in a more binary manner. Thus the points from the volume pedal apply here. If the boost is before the overdrive pedal, you can affect how hard you're driving the overdrive pedal. If the boost is after, you're only making the overdriven signal louder or quieter.

My choice of boost -> volume rather than volume -> boost is mostly arbitrary. I guess I figure "may as well boost the unadulterated signal as much as possible." If your volume pedal has active circuits that could be clipped/overdriven in a not good way (I'm not sure even the Telonics pedal would be affected by this, but I'll leave that to an expert), probably best to put boost after volume.

My personal pedalboard setup (which I admit I rarely use with steel guitar) is guitar -> Diamond Compressor -> Boss TU-2 -> EHX C9 -> modded Ibanez TS9 (gain cranked high) -> Dunlop Crybaby Wah -> attenuator (boost in reverse) -> Wampler Tumnus (soft drive) -> Ibanez CS9 Chorus -> Boss RE-20 -> amp. When I put an volume pedal in the chain, I use it instead of the attenuator. If I added a boost pedal into the chain, I'd experiment with placing it either before the compressor, before the C9, or after the C9 (I suspect before the C9 would cause digital clipping in the pedal).

P.S. Though you didn't ask for advice about this, unless you're having issues with noise, I'd suggest buying the gate last, if at all. With that few pedals, I suspect you won't have a problem. If you do start having noise issues, think about buying a multi-pedal power supply with isolated inputs (I use the Voodoo Labs Pedal Power 2 Plus) before you buy a gate.
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Jim Sliff


From:
Lawndale California, USA
Post Posted 23 Sep 2017 8:37 pm     Reply with quote

Quote:
It's looking like it's best, to have all effects BEFORE the volume pedal??


I depends on what you use the volume pedal for.

If you use it to control the signal going *into * the effects - and have delay and reverb "tail" after volume cutoff - it goes before.

If you want to cut off ALL sound with the pedal - after.

Overdrives also work better when hit with a full signal, so I'd recommend placing it before the volume pedal in either case. But try it both ways and see what sounds best. As others said when it comes to pedal order rules, there are no rules.
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