When to use the effects loop...

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by moo1010321, Jul 28, 2008.

  1. moo1010321

    moo1010321 Member

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    I'm wondering when it's important to use an effects loop of an amp.

    Right now I have everything in front of the amp with nothing in the loop, but I keep hearing that when you leave certain effects in the effects loop of an amp there is less tone suckage. And if so, what effects go in there? I know there's delay and modulation stuff, but is a Wah considered to be a modulation pedal?

    Also what's up with the looper pedals? Why do people use them instead of using the effects loop.

    I just need an answer cause this has been driving me crazy for a bit. Thanks!
     
  2. stephen_b

    stephen_b Member

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    i'd keep wah up front in the signal, and use modulations and delay in the loop. i use a looper box because my amp doesnt have a loop.
     
  3. moo1010321

    moo1010321 Member

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    what are the advantages of using a looper box then?
     
  4. stephen_b

    stephen_b Member

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    i have a couple (4) of pedals that aren't true bypass and suck tone.... the box allows me to switch them out of my signal altogether when i'm not using them.
     
  5. Cado

    Cado Member

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    The amp's effects loop is after the pre amp section, so if you put time based effects in the loop & your pre amp is distorted, the effects will be more pronounced.
     
  6. jcoggins7

    jcoggins7 Member

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    To answer your wah question, they're best used in front. However, I once used mine in the loop and got some very cool sounds out of it.
     
  7. soulsonic

    soulsonic Member

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    Use amp FX loop for delay and reverb. It can also be good with phaser and chorus, etc...
    Basically, those effects you usually want after distortion as has been already mentioned.
    It's definitely the only good place to stick a rackmount multieffects thing (unless its a preamp one).
     
  8. Julia343

    Julia343 Member

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    And another time to use the FX loop is if you're running a high gain amp and you want to use a top end noise gate like the ISP Decimator G-String :) Most of the time that's all I'm running.
     
  9. Zexcoil

    Zexcoil Vendor

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    Keeps the effects from degrading the signal path when they aren't needed.
     
  10. novawind

    novawind Member

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    Other thing too that nobody mentioned is if you put your delay out front of your amp and then try to use your amp's drive channel, all you'll get is mud. This is a problem for me since I just got a Marshall and frankly prefer using its crunch and lead channels more than my OCD or TS9. If you can utilize your effects loop, DO IT.
     
  11. Zelja

    Zelja Member

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    Does anyone use a volume pedal in a loop as a quasi variable master volume? If so, is it a different type of pedal to one which is used at the front of the amp? Any other precautions needed?
     
  12. B_of_H

    B_of_H Member

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    I think it's the other way around but I might be wrong.

    if I put modulation or delay before gain it makes the effect more pronounced ala phaser into marshall (evh).

    putting effects post gain keeps them consistent. I also find that they sound slightly clearer in my effects loop.
     
  13. Lolaviola

    Lolaviola Supporting Member

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    As far as stompboxes are in question, they're best used in front almost always.

    The exception is if you're using a lot of drive on the amp, and you want to place certain FX in the amp's signal path between the preamp and power amp.

    Why is this important? Well if you play a Fender twin or such, you shouldn't worry. If you play deathmetal, you're delay will sound best in the loop.

    I find that for my style (always turning my guitar up/down for changes) that stompboxes are optimized to these dynamics. I find that in the loop these same FX are too sensitive, and the dynamics are hit or miss. I.e. a small change at the guitar is now a too-large change to the send level of the loop.

    I have a loop in my amp and I never use it. No big whoop.

    Also: the way I use a loop box is so I can instantly turn on/off a whole gang of FX. Like if I have a Dist>Flange>Delay I can just use 1 box to put them all in line for a lead cue. Which begs your original question about having the FX up front within your control.
     
  14. nrvana8775

    nrvana8775 Member

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    You should try out the delay in the loop or delay in front thing.

    I actually prefer the tone of my delay in front of the amp, so that I distort the delay, rather than delaying/echoing the distortion. Most people do it the opposite way.

    I also like to run my solemate (reverb) in the loop, keeps the pedal from feeding back too much, and distorted spring reverb sounds poopy. However, I run the RRR in front of the amp, and feed my delay tones with it.
     
  15. nrvana8775

    nrvana8775 Member

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    My distorted tones are pretty clear with the replica :p. Memory lane on the other hand....:rolleyes:
     
  16. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

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    Folks already answered about the main use (taking tone-sucker pedals out of the signal chain until you want to use them ON). But there are a few more.

    - Seperate tuner out. Keep the tuner out of the signal chain until you want it, and when you do turn it on, it is first in the chain so you wouldn't have to turn vibes, phasers, dirt and other pedals off to tune.

    - preset patches...in a way. What I mean, many loopers have a "master" footswitch. This is very cool. if you have a 5 loop looper, you can also still have pedals NOT in any loop, but say you have a song where you want a certain OD, plus vibe, plus delay all at the same time. You can "preload" this by turning on the appropriate loops, but turning on the master so they are still bypassed...hit master and suddenly all loops you turned on before are in the signal path.

    - Pedals in a loop can just stay on....in other words, you wear out the looper footswitches, but not the pedals. Much cheaper...

    - a looper, in my opinion, is absolutely essential if you want to check out if a pedal or group of pedals is messing up your sound, or even to check differences in cables!! Loopers usually have power in (but it is not necessary for the loop part...just the LED indicators to tell you which loops are on) but if you don't connect it you don't see which is on. I use this "feature" to blind test. If I want to test two different cables for how they affect my sound, I loop them (each cable just connected to send and return in their own loop) turn one on the other off...then take out power on the looper, go back and forth and see which one I thought best...turn on power and see which one it was. If I do this and it changes each time, I'd have been fooling myself. If it is consistent, I know I like the one over the other. Etc.
     
  17. Cado

    Cado Member

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    Check it out the other way. My partial chain is: guitar>fuzz>phaser>amp. When I use the phaser with the amp's dirty channel, it souds good; but when the fuzz is on with the phaser, the phased tone is unbelievable!
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2008
  18. Guinness Lad

    Guinness Lad Silver Supporting Member

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    Delay sounds better after the pre-amp section. What will happen is when you kick on your overdrive for a solo it wont also kick up the delay intensity. Running it in the loop keeps the delay from being out of control. I run everything but the delay into the front of the amp.
     
  19. Moe45673

    Moe45673 Member

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    Just an aside: a phaser is actually a filtering effect, like a wah, so may sound best pre-gain

    In terms of the loop: if you're using amp dirt, use it. If the amp is clean and all your dirt comes from pedals, 99% of the time the loop isn't necessary
     
  20. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

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    I meant to add...one thing about using a looper. Buffers.
    If you have say a three loop looper, and have one pedal in each loop, always on so when you choose that loop...that's one thing.
    The pedal "on" is a kind of buffer too, but assuming you like the pedal or you wouldn't have it in there.

    But, if you have say the first loop, three pedals, and some are off and some are on when you select the loop...depending on the buffers on the pedals that are off, it may do a number on your tone, or volume, or both.

    Luckily, you can easily test this at home with whatever setup you end up with. Just thought to mention it.
     

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