Today’s pedal line is from Alvaro Martín Gómez Acevedo. If you have a pedal line (doesn’t have to be in a board) for your rig, please email me a photo, bio, description of pedals and routing to firstname.lastname@example.org. Every Friday I’ll showcase a pedal line submission. Make sure you include any links to your band or music page.
Hi. I’m a veteran bass player (26-year experience so far) from Bucaramanga, Colombia, South America, who just recently got bitten by the effects bug. Although several years ago I bought a Zoom multi-effects unit, I stopped using it just because most of its effect sounds were too “toyish” for me.
But around one year ago, I started reading so many rave reviews about the Microtubes B3K bass distortion/overdrive pedal from Darkglass electronics and, since I’ve always liked distortion, I decided to give it a try. So I ordered mine and when I received it, I simply couldn’t believe my ears. I mean, what a big difference compared to the Zoom distortions! The B3K is a REAL pedal.
After that experience, the “problem” was, I WANTED MORE PEDALS! So I started my research taking my favorite effects (not brands, just effect types) as an starting point. After LOTS of reading and deciding what I wanted, the final result is the one in the attached pictures. My friends at the TalkBass forums dubbed it “the USS Bad Muther F%$&er”. At least from the current offer in the market, I don’t want anything else regarding pedals.
So, here’s what I got:
– Electro-Harmonix Bass Micro Synth
Love this one. A very versatile and great-sounding analog unit. The bass part from Van Halen’s “1984” (yes, the synth prelude to “Jump”) sounds very convincing.
– MXR M87 Bass Compressor
One of the very few ones that has a detailed LED metering, which is a great visual aid for those of us not so experienced with compressors.
– Darkglass Microtubes B3K Bass distortion/overdrive
The one that started the fever. A great distortion/overdrive pedal for bass guitar.
– Copilot FX Planetoid Ring Modulator
Just for funny noises, actually. I must admit that I liked the Ringtone from ZVex demos more, but it’s way overpriced! The Planetoid is also great, anyway.
– Strymon TimeLine delay unit
This is a truly awesome delay/looper unit. Perhaps overkill for my needs, but its endless possibilities make it a worthwhile addition to any pedalboard.
– Buzz Electronics Programmable Octo Looper
Everybody talks about Carl Martin’s Octa-Switch, which is undoubtedly a great unit, but this one is another terrific (and cheaper) product.
All of the above powered by three adapters: One Visual Sound 1-spot, the adapter that came with the DigiTech Whammy DT and the adapter from the EHX Bass Micro Synth. All of them plugged to a power strip tied to the bottom of the pedalboard (picture included). Neutrik plugs and Belden cable were used for connections.
The Buzz Electronics Programmable 8 Looper is the “layout headquarters”. It has eight effect loops, an independent tuner out, a switchable internal buffer and two channels. Channel one covers loops 1 to 3 and channel 2 covers loops 4 to 8. Of course, each channel has its own In/Out jacks. The PolyTune is hooked to the independent tuner out.
The signal path starts on the Loooper ABCD, which is actually a box that can send one signal to several amplifiers, but it also can be used in reverse, as in my case: I use it to keep up to four basses plugged using the 1- 2 – 3 – 4 jacks and switch between them. So, the “In” jack actually works as “Out” in my setup. That signal from the ABCD box goes to the 8-Loop’s channel 1 in. The layout on channel 1 loops (1 to 3) is like this:
– No effect plugged to loop 1. I use it for different effects combinations.
– EHX Bass Micro Synth plugged to loop 2.
– MXR Bass Envelope Filter plugged to loop 3.
Then, channel 1 out goes to the Wilson Q-wah in, which means it isn’t included among the possible loop combinations. The wah’s out jack goes to the MXR compressor in, which is also out of the loop combinations, and is always on. Compressor’s output goes to the 8-Loop’s channel 2 in. Here’s the layout for channel 2 loops (4 to 8):
– Darkglass B3K assigned to loop 4.
– HardWire phaser assigned to loop 5.
– DigiTech whammy DT assigned to loop 6.
– Copilot Planetoid assigned to loop 7.
– Strymon TimeLine assigned to loop 8.
Next step in chain is the 8-Loop’s channel 2 out, which goes to the AR-133 DI Box input jack. From there, the signal goes to the FOH console through the balanced 3-pin XLR output and to the bass amp through the “Link” 1/4″ jack.
With the 8-Loop it’s pretty easy to combine the effect loops in any imaginable way. Most of the times I have each effect assigned to its own loop switch and use loop 1 to create combinations, but I can use all the eight switches to combine effects if I want to.
This is my YouTube channel, in which you can hear some of my effects in action:
Direct links to effect-related videos from my channel:
Thanks for reading!
Álvaro Martín Gómez Acevedo
Bucaramanga, Colombia, South America.