First Pedal Board Questions

dlew919

Doctor of Teleocity
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Sydney
I have my comp, drives and boosts on the bottom row. I could do all my gigs with just that. The modulation and delay are on the top row cause they’re the gravy.

If forced to keep as few as possible, I’d choose the tuner, comp, Euphoria, and the clean boost.

I like to set up the lower row so the signal chain stacks well. That way I have a huge array of volume and drive levels available depending on which ones I select. I can use none, one, or any combination of them to drive the amp and each other.

I’m not sure why so many folks are recommending to wait on a comp? I mostly use mine for 80’s-90’s country and jam band stuff. But it’s nice to have it available. It’s also really good for the more red dirt and Texas country stuff if you’re into that. If any of that stuff is on your radar you’re gonna want one IMO. Just remember it’s an effect. A specific sound and tool for a specific purpose. It will (could) eventually have a negative effect on your playing if it becomes an “always on” thing.
My view is that a compressor is very specific and doesn’t have a very noticeable affect on your sound if you don’t k ow what you’re doing. Hence people use them as boosts, for which they are ill suited. Or they compress way too much for the music they’re playing. And then can’t understand where their time went. I always suggest starting with an easier pedal.
 

oatsoda

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Compressor is not in the top 4, unless you switch to bass. That being said, if you are taking your own board to plug in to someone else’s amp, a reverb pedal might suit.
 

TokyoPortrait

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Dec 10, 2017
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Tokyo, Japan
Hi.

Here’s one point of view. Well, two people’s really. May help, whether you agree with them or not.



And the follow up.




Me, I’d get an overdrive first. Then I’d worry about other stuff. For overdrives, you can use here (& here) to understand and decide what kind / topography you might like.




Good luck.

Pax/
Dean
 

jvin248

Doctor of Teleocity
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Apr 18, 2014
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Lions & Tigers oh Mi !
The JHS 3 series is a great place to look for high quality pedals that don’t break the bank. ...I’ve had a LOT of boards, some that cost a whole lot more. I’m as happy with this as I have been with anything. You don’t have to spend a gazillion bucks to get good sounds... as a bar scene mercenary, I find what I have both practical, and great sounding.

+1 ... don't spend a lot on boutique, like mercenary entertainer Jakedog mentions as he lives the dream. Get a few basic pedals that are inexpensive. I'd add to definitely get a Joyo American Sound pedal. A Fuzz clone is great too, find one in the $25 range, or look up the fuzz face schematic and solder up your own with ten dollars of parts.

.




Here's what the mention about fuzz and 'Hendrix' in the previous post should have explained. A fuzz gives you all the tone-touch-sensitivity.



And maybe you don't need any pedals at all .... It takes setting up a dirty amp or a clean amp/PA and a fuzz or the Joyo American Sound pedal set for doing this.



.
 

TokyoPortrait

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Hi again.

I’ll add this: I’m on holiday at the moment and I brought three pedals with me. The ‘tone’ one is a germanium Fuzz Face clone. I picked this because, with single coil guitars (which is what I have access to), they clean up amazingly by rolling the guitar’s volume back. Very versatile. That’s how I use them, pedal volume and fuzz knobs basically on full and the sound / tone controlled by the guitar volume.

Here’s one quick example.





And, a longer set of examples.





Pax/
Dean
 

David Menke

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May 29, 2020
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Location
Washington
As the title says, I’m putting together my first board. I’ve been playing for awhile but have never tried any pedals beyond a looper. Have been thinking about starting with pedals, then I got invited to a monthly local jam at a rehearsal studio that has a couple Marshall and Fender stacks. A basic pedalboard should come in handy then.

I usually play Americana/Indie, sometimes classic rock or blues type sounds too. I like to keep things simple (and I’m pretty cheap), so I’m thinking that a board with six pedals should cover a lot of bases: tuner, looper, and four effects pedals.

For the effects (and here is where the questions start), I was thinking a compressor, an overdrive, a delay, and one *other* (second overdrive, boost, chorus/vibrato, or maybe something weirder). Distortion/Fuzz is probably heavier than almost every play. Does this lineup sound about right? What would you suggest for the last spot?

My goal was to keep every pedal under $150, but optimally under $100 (happy to buy used). I started by focusing on overdrives. Looking at things like Plumes, OCD, Timmy, Tumnus, etc. watching a hundred videos, and finally hit the Special Cranker, and that just seems to be it. It is the exact sound I was looking for. And a good price to boot.

From there, I looked at delays. I didn’t see a lot in the price range that looked great to me, but had more or less chosen the Carbon Copy. Then, I stumbled across the Dispatch Master. Highly regarded online and the YouTube videos are amazing. I realized that I must have it. Lol. It’s at the high end of the price range, but it covers so much ground that I’m ok with the higher price (~$150). It potentially removes the 4th effects pedal from the equation (potentially).

So that leaves me looking for a compressor, which I’m pretty undecided on.

I’d love to have a sanity check on the overall setup, my choices and/or other options I should look for on the lower end of the price range? Any compressor recs? What about particular pedal board and power supply recommendations?

Would appreciate any guidance I could get. Thanks.
compression MXR Dyna Comp
Carbon Copy for Delay/slap back
Boss DS-1 for Distortion
Overdrive Ibanez TS model
Boss CH-1 super chorus

MXR M290 Mini Phase 95 Phaser Guitar Effects Pedal​

These options are priced right, test of time and sound great.
And another option is the Fender Hammertone Reverb pedal.
Get a Boss Tuner, to power all the pedals. Best price and doubles as power and tuner. Great price now at GC or MF on the Boss tuner.

BOSS TU-3 Chromatic Tuner Pedal Power Solution Bundle​

 

Killing Floor

Doctor of Teleocity
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Austin, TX
Big fan of Origin Cali76 compressors. But they are not cheap. Honestly the one I use at home or to record is Effectrode but there’s no way I’m putting it on my board because I break things. I can’t break my Cali Stacked.

My favorite board power is Cioks because they are very slender and come with a reliable mount and they are expandable and power up to 24V.
 

Headless Axeman

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Joined
Oct 21, 2013
Posts
153
Location
Philly
Thanks everyone.

In one of the least surprising turns of events ever, after a couple weeks of watching pedal videos and reading up on things, a late night session looking at used pedal classifieds resulted in me getting my first three pedals — the Keeley compressor plus, Benson preamp, and EQD dispatch master. I got them all for good prices, so I should be able to move on without taking too much of a hit if I don’t like any of them. After the feedback I’ve gotten here, I’ll take an especially close look at the compressor to see if it’s worth my while.

Not making any further moves yet, but my thinking now is that the last spot might go to a klone. Maybe the Archer Ikon or Tumnus. Or a fuzz is still possible. And if the compressor goes, it would probably be replaced by something that covers some modulation bases, like a chorus/vibrato pedal. It all remains to be seen.

Thanks again for all of the input.
 

14strings

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Hudson Valley, NY
skip the tuner pedal and buy a TC poly tune clip on then simply roll down the guitars volume for silent tuning

an Earthquakes device Dispatch Master which has delay and reverb in one pedal is a great score for the OP
 

Headless Axeman

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Earthquakes device Dispatch Master which has delay and reverb in one pedal is a great score for the OP

This is the truth. On a small board, it seems a good idea to cover multiple bases with one pedal if possible. But beyond that, I just move the knobs around, and everything sounds great. The kind of pedal where I'm noodling with it a bit, and all of the sudden it is 45 minutes later.

Looking at what is missing from the board, I'm finding that I'm zeroing in on the phaser sound. The question is whether to go small/cheap/classic with a Phase 90 or go with the Dispatch Master playbook and cover more sonic territory (and a bit more board space and higher price) with something like the Grand Orbiter.
 

Headless Axeman

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Thought I’d follow up with an update on where things stand. I spent some time scouring used listings for good deals on pedals that I thought might work on my board. Ended up with this somewhat random (and EQD-heavy) arrangement. I expect to spend the next bunch of months comparing some other relatively inexpensive options to try and reach a “final” version.

1664119628871.jpeg
 

Midgetje94

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Am I the only country guy who doesn’t run a comp? Maybe it’s just different styles. Maybe I’m wrong. Idk. Lol.
 

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cyclopean

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Maybe two od/distortion pedals so you can stack them and have three sounds available without bending down to change settings.

You want an eq pedal. Trust me.

I wouldn’t use it for alt country, but a chorus or flanger would be great for indie rock.

Both indie and alt country can make use of a fuzz. You like buck ownens, right?

A mini pog is more flexible than you think it is. If you don’t go hog wild with the settings it can bring you some sparkle and thump.

I think a trem pedal is a must for alt country, and reverb if your amp doesn’t have it.

What do you like for indie rock?
 

Cyberi4n

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I expect to spend the next bunch of months comparing some other relatively inexpensive options to try and reach a “final” version.
Final. Final? :lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol:
Is nobody here going to tell him?


Am I the only country guy who doesn’t run a comp? Maybe it’s just different styles. Maybe I’m wrong. Idk. Lol.
I've never run a compressor, ever, on any board I've made. Occassionally on some of the Line6 patches I used to gig with, but on my boards? nah
 

arlum

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Because of your monetary limitations and the fact that this is a first or "starter' pedal board most all of the suggestions could be ranked good to excellent.
 

loudboy

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Sedona, Arizona
I'm in a band that plays pretty much the same thing. I built a small board that fits in an Anvil briefcase.

Xotic SP Comp, small and really great-sounding, I use it on the low setting and mixed slightly above halfway, and the cleans tones stil have attack, but are just smooth and ringing.

A Musicliliy Chorus or Phaser (I switch them out) less that $30, and do the job on the 2-3 songs a night I use them on.

OD - I alternated between a few. OCD, Wampler Belle, Mosky Tim knockoff, J Rockett The Dude V2, like them all.

Xotic EP Booster, a secret weapon for solo boost. Puts a solo right where it needs to be, makes it fat and juicy. Can't recommend it highly enough.

Mooer Delay/Reverb pedal, does just what it says. Cheap and sounds OK, but I'm tempted to get an MXR Carbon Copy.

I run the whole thing off a 20,000mAh phone brick, and a 5V to 9V step-up USB cable that cost under $30 and will run the whole board for 50-60 hours between charges.

MG Pedalboard.jpg
 




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