Which, if any, of these ODs could be used well with bass?

Discussion in 'The Stomp Box' started by E5RSY, Apr 24, 2019.

  1. E5RSY

    E5RSY Poster Extraordinaire

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    Do I really need an OD specifically marketed for bass?

    On hand I currently have:

    OD-3
    DOD OD Preamp 250
    Butler RealTube 901
     
  2. Mark the Moose

    Mark the Moose Tele-Meister

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    The obvious answer is to try them and see how they sound. The more nuanced answer is that many overdrive circuits cut the low end to focus the tone. This could result n a thin or brittle sound when used on bass. Mad professor makes a specific bass OD, a Timmy or Wampler Euphoria might also work because of the active bass control.
     
  3. mexicanyella

    mexicanyella Tele-Holic

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    Me too...try them and use your ears. You’ll be able to tell of the pedal preserves enough low end or not.

    I play a passive Squier P-bass and aim for a not-quite-clean grungy mids-forward tone...pretty clean when I play soft and dirty when I dig in. Most of the overdrive I’ve tried seems aimed at dirtier sounds than I want, and what has worked for me has been the Marshall Plexi emulation in a Line 6 Pod 2.0, with a little compression and the gain set low (20-25%). More recently I get the same kind of sound from a Zoom B2’s Marshall Superbass emulation...in each case the Pod or the Zoom drives a clean SS power amp and a cabinet. No speaker sims used unless I record direct.

    So if you’re after rock P-bass type tone (I’m hearing that as the tone in Dio songs), try something that aims for the old Marshall crunch first, and adjust for the cleaner end of that spectrum...and increase gain as needed.

    I want to know how that Butler 901 works!
     
  4. erratick

    erratick Tele-Holic

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    I use a rat on bass. You can dial in varying dirt. Tone knob is a reverse. I do just warm for most things, and then when I'm trying to do John Wetton, I turn that gain up!

    So you don't need one marketed for bass. However:

    the OD-3 has a bass version, ODB-3. So OD-3 might have some eq for guitar.

    So does the butler realtube. Bass version is cool. But you should try it- basses sounds great through a little tube warmth.

    The OD pre amp 250 is worth a try as well. It's pretty well thought of on the talk bass forums for warming up a bass.
     
  5. Obelisk

    Obelisk Tele-Afflicted

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    Of those three, it's a hard call though I would probably go with the Boss OD-3. My recollection of the Butler is that it gets kind of mushy in the low end on electric guitar, so that wouldn't necessarily be flattering for bass. I would think the 250 might lose some low end response, but it is a great pedal through a cranked Marshall. You should try them out and see which one you like. If you are willing to spend some extra money, a Pro Co Rat pedal works great for both bass or guitar.

    Ultimately I prefer a good fuzz pedal for when I am playing bass. Since most basslines consist of single note runs and riffs, fuzz just makes the bass standout better than a overdrive or distortion pedal for making dirty sounds. I would actually suggest a variant of the Maestro Brassmaster Bass Octave fuzz or Univox Superfuzz. Black Cat makes an excellent clone of both. Chris Squire's sound in Yes is a good example of the Brassmaster in action. What you really need when dirtying up a bass tone is the ability to balance the clean sound of the bass and the dirty sound, so the Brassmaster circuit nailed it out of the park 5 decades ago. They also work cool with guitar as a changeup dirt box. I use mine after a fuzz, compressor and wah pedals. The fuzz is similar to an octave fuzz with 4 separate tapers.

    The EHX Deluxe Bass Big Muff is also quite nice for bass as well. They can be found for pretty cheap on the used market and they have a balance control. A Sovtek era Big Muff is also an excellent pedal for bass. They're really warm sounding and have a great low end that just doesn't mush out. Though I haven't tried the recently issued EHX Deluxe Russian Big Muff, I do know it has a balance control. I bet that pedal sounds killer for bass.
     
  6. E5RSY

    E5RSY Poster Extraordinaire

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    For awhile I was contemplating getting a BM for this purpose. I was looking at both the Bass BM and the Green Russian BM, which also seems great for bass. I couldn't decide... I do have a Behringer Super Fuzz on order, which is pretty much a copy of the old Univox. Might try that, too.
     
  7. E5RSY

    E5RSY Poster Extraordinaire

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    I wonder if one could dial in an acceptable tone with the 901's bass-mid-treble controls.
     
  8. Whatizitman

    Whatizitman Friend of Leo's

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    What little I've messed around with pedals like OD 250 with bass, I haven't been too happy with the results. But I rarely gig, so take my advice with a grain of salt...

    I know OP didn't mention the MojoMojo, but I thought I would plug it since they are so cheap in comparison to most classic brand name drive pedals.

    I was very pleasantly surprised with a MojoMojo. Way too muddy and compressed for guitar, IMO. But it ended up being just what I needed for bass. Keeps the low fat, but can still dial in good mids to hear myself in the band. I don't use tons of drive - just enough to give it some tube-esque growl with my p-bass. There is tons more dirt on tap if needed, but for what I like it does just fine. It's an always on pedal for me.
     
  9. MilwMark

    MilwMark Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Scott, why not just plug them in and see?

    For me, for guitar:

    - OD3 adds passes too much bass.
    - Butler Tube Driver can add too much bass, but can be set to just acceptable bass levels. I’m not sure how it compares to the 901.
    - the 250 cuts just a tiny bit of bass with the Drive off and progressively more until it equals a Tube Screamer bass cut with the Drive maxed.

    In one of my bands the bass player uses subtle OD occasionally and it sounds great. In part because it does focus the tone and give it edge. But it would not be great as his base (pardon the pun) tone.
     
  10. E5RSY

    E5RSY Poster Extraordinaire

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    Right, good question. I don't have a bass amp at home. Using the house amp where I play. Just trying to do a first cut and eliminate any of my pedals that would definitely not be a good idea with a bass.
     
  11. OttoCorrect

    OttoCorrect Tele-Meister

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    I’m told the dod250 is good with bass. Dunno from experience but lots of others seem to dig it for bass.
     
  12. JL_LI

    JL_LI Friend of Leo's

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    I’ve been listening to recordings made in the ‘60s and early ‘70s lately and in many of them, the bass guitar sounds different. I don’t think it was pedals back then. To me the difference is low (relative to SS) power tube amps that were pushed to their limits to keep up with drums and guitars. I still remember the delicious sound of a Bassman or a B15. If that’s the sound you’re looking for, a vintage tube bass amp may be a better choice than pedals.
     
  13. E5RSY

    E5RSY Poster Extraordinaire

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    I used to have a Bassman 50 head and a Fender 2x15" cab. That was a great (but cumbersome) set up.
     
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  14. Miguel-martinez

    Miguel-martinez TDPRI Member

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    try them but if you can afford a electro harmonics for bass buy it.
     
  15. artdecade

    artdecade Poster Extraordinaire

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    You want pedals that will retain the low end - like a Hot Cake or pedals designed for bass. A Rat probably would not be my first choice.
     
  16. Paul in Colorado

    Paul in Colorado Telefied Ad Free Member

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  17. twangking

    twangking Tele-Afflicted

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    I find that the first two cuts pass. The butler, no idea. Haven't played one in years.
     
  18. Twang Deluxe

    Twang Deluxe Tele-Meister

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    MojoMojo
     
  19. mudbelly

    mudbelly Tele-Meister

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    Don't know the player or the gear but there is some great slightly distorted overdriven bass tones on the last couple of Elvin Bishop releases. It's worth a listen.
     
  20. E5RSY

    E5RSY Poster Extraordinaire

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    Are you referring to the Blue Tube pedal? It's really not that much different than the 901 "Black Tube". It may sound pretty good.
     
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