Why does it feel so freeing to play with as few pedals on the board as possible?

Bob T.

Senior Member
Messages
3,163
I used to play with 3-4 dirt boxes to get different levels of overdrive and distortion. I thought it sounded great, but it was overkill for how I like to play. I am down to a single hard clipping overdrive that feels like a cranked amp. From there, I use a variety of boosts (clean, treble, fuzz) to go from singing leads, gritty clean, and fuzzy rock. Not only am I finding the sounds more inspiring, but it feels just right with my Les Paul.

Sometimes, less really can be more.
 

Resonate01

Member
Messages
1,522
Because it reminds you that pedals are really just a utility tool and not a necessity. I played with nothing but a tuner, two drives, and a delay on my board for about 6 months and I'm convinced it was the happiest I've been with my board in a while.

When I first started getting into pedals I was told: "The more pedals you have, the less you will use them".

Which I firmly believe is true.
 

erksin

Member
Messages
23,125
IMO it has zero to do with the number of pedals and everything to do with your relation to them in the context of doing your thing.

I'm a big fan of pedals that are highly interactive with the controls of the guitar. Anything that keeps me from thinking about having to step on it to get what I want. I hate having my attention diverted like that. Sometimes that's unavoidable but I tend to make my choices with that as a primary objective if possible.
 

mici

Member
Messages
1,071
Been there, done that. From >20 pedals on my super-spaceship-a-like pedalboard I downsized to:

8ssjf1Jtm3cTbduFA_18nMkl7X-0acvafpO8IexANuBDRciTxpWR-G4w877y8y_RS_VslazIoAJSR5gQmoHZC9lVYfOFzDdsfg9d1J-zw5nfCOidHiOCj3kO7sTFdwAzSk0iXqFcWaxRZtzYRdFlfzJgkdfNIbwUX2dI9wJCiexg4OBHphE5H4ouX5gLsFnpisd0vVAoLKU3sEn7g9f3IXFLvL22F6UwnjT3uLcRPCPdrqufzgIOk_5lBSKRlz5w66nkDCz70DzVjyIQYcp1EVjigfVZyCHK6lkOTP8rPtoDWjZq65eMANCSzCD1eHEG4hBOZlX8yHMikvtFQtNuwotyIGwAR8CeO3_rir0ghU4XsfGxBhtjtxSjjFvWjn6CJ3nBXc8BGHY5gGSH_F9P0zi5xsSRmr5FKD0lt5IB4hIl5lWwnvQaNmwHYYEoHrPrMaRQG3Y042T2etj8Y9ZsCBc30ZSk36qJvyhmaJEV9oRku6PStbFsuI8XdbwdeuxUUb6nVsJm1KUfx-yEfiSZfgDA-ERVbYVbmy4QJcENDCzpV5k_KLjRxfR59rHKbZbd5FzZ_KOFqRDT_gpVMXFJGcrWrmcsFp4w1CAauKKioNUxc0jD1XtZ=w598-h496-no


All in fx loop. Whammy just for octave up&down harmony or 2 octave up pitch shift in Tom Morello style, just a little bit of always on chorus to thicken my tone, volume pedal for occasional swells (mostly used to control volume) and delay for... delay. That's all, really. :dunno

Sometimes, not that often I put phaser/wah in front of a dirty amp, just for fun'n'flavour.
 

NHBluesMan

Member
Messages
6,122
Been there, done that. From >20 pedals on my super-spaceship-a-like pedalboard I downsized to:

8ssjf1Jtm3cTbduFA_18nMkl7X-0acvafpO8IexANuBDRciTxpWR-G4w877y8y_RS_VslazIoAJSR5gQmoHZC9lVYfOFzDdsfg9d1J-zw5nfCOidHiOCj3kO7sTFdwAzSk0iXqFcWaxRZtzYRdFlfzJgkdfNIbwUX2dI9wJCiexg4OBHphE5H4ouX5gLsFnpisd0vVAoLKU3sEn7g9f3IXFLvL22F6UwnjT3uLcRPCPdrqufzgIOk_5lBSKRlz5w66nkDCz70DzVjyIQYcp1EVjigfVZyCHK6lkOTP8rPtoDWjZq65eMANCSzCD1eHEG4hBOZlX8yHMikvtFQtNuwotyIGwAR8CeO3_rir0ghU4XsfGxBhtjtxSjjFvWjn6CJ3nBXc8BGHY5gGSH_F9P0zi5xsSRmr5FKD0lt5IB4hIl5lWwnvQaNmwHYYEoHrPrMaRQG3Y042T2etj8Y9ZsCBc30ZSk36qJvyhmaJEV9oRku6PStbFsuI8XdbwdeuxUUb6nVsJm1KUfx-yEfiSZfgDA-ERVbYVbmy4QJcENDCzpV5k_KLjRxfR59rHKbZbd5FzZ_KOFqRDT_gpVMXFJGcrWrmcsFp4w1CAauKKioNUxc0jD1XtZ=w598-h496-no


All in fx loop. Whammy just for octave up&down harmony or 2 octave up pitch shift in Tom Morello style, just a little bit of always on chorus to thicken my tone, volume pedal for occasional swells (mostly used to control volume) and delay for... delay. That's all, really. :dunno

Sometimes, not that often I put phaser/wah in front of a dirty amp, just for fun'n'flavour.


hmmm... needs some drive pedals ;)
 

108

Member
Messages
2,829
I am playing with a tuner, a hotcake, and a vapor trail at the moment. I always keep things basic though. I work better in minimalism, and after all, I play guitar not pedals.
 

-Empire

Member
Messages
5,975
Possessions are chains. Just kidding, but seriously, the more you own the more you have to worry about.
 

FatsoForgotso

Member
Messages
116
As someone who used to play with two pedal boards, the reduction of s*** to step on was a breath of fresh air when I could finally focus on my GD playing. Delay, reverb, pitch, wah, and tremelo with amp distortion. Solid gold.
 

dpgreek

Member
Messages
9,553
If youre good with lugging around a bunch of stuff and/or like variety, nothing wrong with them. But there is some real value in "less is more" because yes it makes you play more and not tap dance and most of the time you really dont need as much.
 

ChampReverb

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
12,836
For me the key is setting up sounds that are fairly subtle and therefore actually usable before we start playing.

It sounds mostly like the guitar and amp with some sonic seasoning.

-bEn r.
 




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