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Are too many buffers a bad thing?

When is a good thing too good?

My rig is:

Catalinbread V8 Fuzz (TB)
Crybaby (only use sometimes, TB)
Input Buffer/Splitter (Buffer)
MI Audio Boost'n'Buff (Buffer)
Yamaha Compressor (awful Buffer)
T-Rex Alberta (Buffer)
Eventide TF (Buffer

Is that much bufferage a bad thing? I just happen to like these pedals, but I'm wondering if I might need to swap some for TB boxes.

I use Lava ECL cables.


Angle Loss

Senior Member
If you like your sound now, don't change a thing. Investing in a single TB looper is a good tool though for any guitarist to quickly check out the quality of your buffers, even if it is not regularly a part of your board. It's best to evaluate with your ears. btw, you can set the Timefactor to be true bypass, which would eliminate one buffer (if you really need to--let your ears decide).


No need to change pedals but You probably don't need that many buffers with such a short signal chain. If you like your tone the way it is and you're not experiencing noise amplification by the sum of the buffers, just leave it as it is.

If noise is a problem, removing reduntant buffers may be of great advantage on the signal-to-noise ration.
I'm looking for a better compressor, so I'll make sure it's TB. The tone sounds good to me so I won't worry about the rest.


Yeah...I have noticed having too many buffers (of differing qualities) have a negative effect...in my cases usually too "ice-pick" sounding.

The BEST thing about buffers though, if designed right they are just preserving (and in a way stabilising) your signal, so adjust the amp to get it back to where you want.

The thing is, some bad buffers, even some not very good cables, while they change our sound and signal, may do it in a pleasant way...Some "tone sucking" can actually sound fantastic with the right guitar/amp/pedal combination.

Many report that "I took the pedal out, and it was a like a blanket coming off" but may find that though clearer, they really liked that sound they had before.


I love the buffer in the Eventide - gives my signal a nice spit and polish after a long signal chain. And yes, tone-suck can be good - I had a Boss OD-1 that wasn't quite right with my rig, I hooked up my vintage Electric Mistress one day (a tone sucker for sure) and when bypassed the overdrive was perfect.


Silver Supporting Member
Yes, too many buffers can really thin out and 'falsify' your sound. They need to be strategically placed. But, as said above, if you're happy with your tone, then nothing to worry about.


I have a Big Muff PI that has a 40K input impedance. It sounds GREAT with a Boss-OC2 in front with a 1K output.


Silver Supporting Member
Each buffer adds a tiny bit of noise and distortion.... not usually a problem when using just a few in your pedal chain since the amount is very small. However, when you stack pedals with multiple buffers, the change in noise and distortion can add up, especially since most buffered pedals leave 2 or 3 buffers in the signal chain at all times. Read more:


regards, Jack

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