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Guitar and Bass Effects Pedals 

Guitar and bass effects pedals are used to change the sound of the signal your instrument produces. There are many different effects that all create different sounds.

Some effects affect the sound of your guitar or bass very little and are used to create fine adjustments and add colour to your sound. 

Other effects will alter the signal from your instrument drastically completely transforming the sound.

Guitar pedals are designed in the form of stompboxes cased in a box-like chassis designed to be put on the floor or on a pedal board and turned on and off with the player’s feet.

Some examples of popular guitar and bass effects pedals include:

Delay

  • Takes the signal and slows it down before playing it back after the original signal creating an echo effect
  • Can be used subtly or very obviously
  • Several different types of delay - tape, ping-pong, slapback, stereo

Reverb

  • Used to simulate the effect of the sound being in a space
  • Long reverbs are used for creating ambience

Overdrive

  • Designed to recreate the sound of tubes being pushed and broken up by high gain
  • Adds gentle to medium saturation
  • More subtle than distortion
  • More dynamically responsive than distortion
  • Can be used to push a clean or slightly crunchy guitar signal

Distortion

  • Much more drastic than overdrive
  • Saturates the signal more heavily than overdrive
  • Allows for good sustain
  • Less dynamically responsive than overdrive
  • Used heavily in rock and metal genres

Compression

Squashes the dynamic range of a signal by attenuating the peaks and amplifying the quietest parts

  • Subtle effects
  • Very popular with bass players
  • Can be used to smooth out the sound or making it more punchy
  • If you have multiple guitar or bass effects pedals you can put them on a pedal board. Pedalboards are the panels on which your pedals sit together. Some pedalboards include power supplies to power your pedals.

The main advantage of using a pedalboard is they keep all your pedals together and make them easier to transport. 

Some pedalboards come in a flight case style design and others come in a carry bag to protect your pedals.