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Multi-effects - is there anything genuinely worth looking at ?


Moltisanti

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This is kind of a general request, but bear with it.

 

I'm trying to find out if there are any multi-fx units on the market that are actually worth buying for live use. One of my bandmates has a Boss GT-6, which is ok-ish for some weird noises but sounds pretty terrible for anything else, it's too digital and noisy and i wouldn't dream of using one myself.

 

Plus i'm looking for something that has the functionality to be able to switch the amp channel that it's going through. I have a Korg A4 from back in the day which again sounds very average live but the fact that you could assign a channel on your amp to patches on it made it massively useable on stage - i always think that there's no point buying a decent amp with a decent crunch, if you're just going to run a multi-fx through it and ignore your amp's tone.

 

I've seen ads for the Vox multi-fx, has anyone tried this out ?

 

so far i've stuck to using my usual rig of boss single and double pedals, Ernie Ball volume, Cry-baby wah, and Marshall footswitch, with a line selector, but as anyone who's tried this setup live will know, it can get a bit like Riverdance as you try and press 4 pedals at the same time to get a certain sound for a certain part of a song...the beauty of the multi-fx is being able to assign patches that are easily accessible and can run 5 or 6 fx at once just by pressing one button.

 

I understand that rackmount gear with a midi controller would be the answer if money was no object....but it is. Does anyone have any bright ideas about a solution to this problem that i'm sure a lot of you have experienced.

 

Cheers

 

R

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Vox TonelabSE? If thats what you are referring to - I wouldnt recommend it...It sounds good, but severely limited in that application......

The Boss GT8 is generally considered the best multi-effects unit...Its supremely powerful and versatile. It will channel switch an amp....Its also considered to be quite a leap from the GT6....Although if you pal is using stock patches - then he isnt coming close to tapping into the power of the GT6 either....

The PODxt is another solution - either the bean via midi-controller or XTlive as a pedal board....

The Rocktron Xpression and Replifex are very good rack style solutions - the Replifex will channel switch an amp....

The Gmajor is another workmanlike solution - its does channel switch but also carries are very poor reliability record....

From here - you should research these thru the user reviews section of this site and Muscians Friend, etc....and other resources to decide whats best for you.....

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dude the ME-50 is a horrible little unit, my other guitarist has one just for pub gigs and he's stopped using it because it sounds so nasty.

having been checking this stuff out all day, i'm going to check out a Rocktron X-pression and a G-major....

it may be the way forward

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Originally posted by Lorax

Vox TonelabSE? If thats what you are referring to - I wouldnt recommend it...It sounds good, but severely limited in that application......

 

 

What's the drawbacks of the Tonelab? I've only heard good stuff here... No channel switching?

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Originally posted by Moltisanti

dude the ME-50 is a horrible little unit, my other guitarist has one just for pub gigs and he's stopped using it because it sounds so nasty.

 

 

Again, I've managed to get very good sounds from it - as have a lot of other people I've heard. Properly set up it is a very capable unit.

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Originally posted by Jeztastic



What's the drawbacks of the Tonelab? I've only heard good stuff here... No channel switching?

 

 

The tonelab is best in regards to amp sims (by miles) but worst in regards to power & flexibility with regards to effects.....I had both the XTL and TLSE and I kept the TLSE for the amp sims caused it reacted & sounded better but regretted the difference in effects - they sound ok, but there are less of them and quite a bit more limited in power & flexibility....and some simply sounded worse than the XTL....So if just for effects - I wouldnt even consider the TLSE....

 

I believe the GT8 is the only one that offers amp switching....

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Originally posted by Moltisanti

dude the ME-50 is a horrible little unit, my other guitarist has one just for pub gigs and he's stopped using it because it sounds so nasty.


having been checking this stuff out all day, i'm going to check out a Rocktron X-pression and a G-major....


it may be the way forward

 

 

You can make anything sound nasty and crappy if you dont spend any time working with it....On the flipside, a good soundsmith can get good sounds out of nearly anything....

 

Such prejudicial attitudes arent very welcome around here..They reek of inexperience and immaturity.....Alot of very well respected members use the stuff you are trashing effectively and sound good with them.....

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boss me-5, dude...all the other ones, the vox, the gt8, all that {censored} all are for achieving exemplary bedroom tone, they aren't designed for real working musicians....
in the real world, they just don't hold up against bass and drums...digital lacks punch, and even if they put a tube in it it still ain't the same..
the me5 is all analog except for the delay/reverb....
it has a loop, and noise reduction, and unlike any other product out there, each iof it's 64 patches has it's
OWN manual mode...yep...like having 64 little pedal boards under your feet...
add a wah wah, and a rude fuzz in front, a decent delay in the loop, and you're good to go damn near anywhere *(you can do the "4 cable method" too, if your amp has a loop)...
the original, and still the best....no baubles or beads, just phat, real analog tone that responds to your fingers, touch, dynamics.....
all the other {censored} is cheese whiz in a stompbox.
peep my (and other's ) reviews at harmony central.
peace.
BTW... a real soundmsith can tell you, ya cannot polish up a turd like the me-50...they sound like {censored}....digital aliasing, anyone?
turn your guitar down, and you'll hear it...lol

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Originally posted by pinkjimiphoton

BTW... a real soundmsith can tell you, ya cannot polish up a turd like the me-50...they sound like {censored}....digital aliasing, anyone?

turn your guitar down, and you'll hear it...lol

 

 

You might hear quantisation noise (bloody unlikely) but turning your guitar down wouldn't make any aliasing problems more apparent. I find it hard to believe that the ME-50 has aliasing problems anyway; such issues were put to bed by the early 90s if not before.

 

A real soundsmith would get on with getting the best from the gear they had rather than complaining about its shortcomings, real or imagined. I've seen plenty of pros (and amateurs) getting great sounds with digital multiFX.

 

That said, the ME-5 is/was a great unit.

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Originally posted by dot-dot-dot



You might hear quantisation noise (bloody unlikely) but turning your guitar down wouldn't make any aliasing problems more apparent. I find it hard to believe that the ME-50 has aliasing problems anyway; such issues were put to bed by the early 90s if not before.


A real soundsmith would get on with getting the best from the gear they had rather than complaining about its shortcomings, real or imagined. I've seen plenty of pros (and amateurs) getting great sounds with digital multiFX.


That said, the ME-5 is/was a great unit.

 

 

Honestly Dot, having tried many of these units, I found the ME-50 to sound worse than the GT-8 (whcih sounds great)- I don't know why it may be so, maybe I didn't spend enough time with it I admit, but it sounded "cheaper" than the GT-8 IMO. But i disagree wholeheartedly that these "digital" units can't stand up to bass and drums and aren't for real working musicians. Having gigged for about 15 years around town, I'd have to say I've seen and heard people do really good work with gear you wouldn't expect based on what gets touted here...

 

Also, I re state my opinion that most people that hear "digital aliasing" and "sputtering" etc.. haven't turned off the noise gate in these units. The noise gate creates all kinds of artifacts and other havoc as it tries to suss out signal from noise. Also, I'm finally of the opinon that I DO hear a little of what people are referring to in the ultra high super recto amp models when they are cranked to {censored}e...fortunately I never have need of those sounds anyway, and it seems to me that the people that are most disappointed by these units want those sounds the most.

 

B

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I've not heard or tried a GT-8 - I'd agree that the ME-50 isn't as good as the GTs I have tried (3 and 6, I think) but it's perfectly servicable. I've seen other people use the 50 and sound great - ure, they might have sounded even better with a GT-8 but the ME-50 isn't entirely useless... ;)

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Originally posted by dot-dot-dot

I've not heard or tried a GT-8 - I'd agree that the ME-50 isn't as good as the GTs I have tried (3 and 6, I think) but it's perfectly servicable. I've seen other people use the 50 and sound great - ure, they might have sounded even better with a GT-8 but the ME-50 isn't entirely useless...
;)



Absolutely! In my last cover band (I was always a bassist by trade) I used a little ZOOM BFX bass processor for fuzz and wah and phaser (for like maybe 4 songs in our entire set...but it needed!) and I set the amp sims in the thing for a nice warm and punchy tone which was then sent to a DI box and then out to my amp. The DI box was getting the ZOOM signal directly the whole night. Having gone wireless in that band, I was always able to assist in sound check and play at the same time etc... and the bass sounded fantastic out front. The sound guy (a pro- 200.00 a night was his rate, but we were pulling 1000.00 for each show) was stunned- he had earlier mocked my little plastic ZOOM friend, stating that "all was going to get was noise out front"
It all depends on how you set things up, I would have never bought the thing if it sounded like {censored}e...but he didn't know that, all he saw was "Oh great, a bass player with an FX device :rolleyes: What a mess...."

:D

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I once saw a guy with one of those little Zoom strap-mounted multiFX units - he sounded awesome. Probably largely down to the fact that he could really, really play, and knew when to, but the actual tones he was getting were great too - straight into a JC120, I think. I'm not sure I could make one of them sound good... ;)

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I recently dusted off my Boss Me-30... its about 6 years old and has no amp modelling or anything but its fantastic for some applications.
I play a 100 watt all tube marshall and through the clean channel the me-30 gives great modulation effects and sounds great after a fuzz pedal (hisses like torrentail rain in the amps fx loop though).

It seems alot more flexible than some of the stuff out these days as you can use compression, distortion/overdrive(okay, these sound pretty bad), phaser/EQ, noise gate, flanger/chorus/pitchshifter/tremolo, delay and reverb all at the same time. I keep coming across new multi FX units which seem fairly limited in what effects you can use at the same time.

For me a multi fx is a cheap way to try out lots of different effects and switch quickly between several patches of completely different sounds.

If you get a multi fx tweak the bastard until you know ever single sound it can produce, you'll find loads of useable sounds.

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most of the guys doing the pub band stuff round here use multi fx of some sort or other.

the absolute best sounding is a guy using an AKG2000 x or whatever it;s called. the big silver one thats been out for a few years. ive seen a couple of other guys sounding good through thes ebut this guy is smoking.

sayign that he is playing through gibby es 355s or les paul customs and can play like a mofo.

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ok first of all cheers to pinkjimiphoton for telling it like it is

i'm not on a mission to p ss people off who have an ME-50, it's just in my experience (which is vast by the way) they sound thin and cheap when in proper volume gig situations, the distortions are weak and have no body whatsoever, i'm sorry but if you put it next to a real amp (with valves in it) there's no way you could ever say that they sound good.

The reason i started this thread is because i'm still yet to find a better way to get a natural tone from my amp at volume with effects than using stand alone pedals on a board.

hence the rackmount discussion.

go and make yourself a brew, calm down a bit and chiiiiiiiiill

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Originally posted by Moltisanti

ok first of all cheers to pinkjimiphoton for telling it like it is


i'm not on a mission to p ss people off who have an ME-50, it's just in my experience (which is vast by the way) they sound thin and cheap when in proper volume gig situations, the distortions are weak and have no body whatsoever, i'm sorry but if you put it next to a real amp (with valves in it) there's no way you could ever say that they sound good.


The reason i started this thread is because i'm still yet to find a better way to get a natural tone from my amp at volume with effects than using stand alone pedals on a board.


hence the rackmount discussion.


go and make yourself a brew, calm down a bit and chiiiiiiiiill



You are still incredibly short-sighted & narrow minded....All of these solutions mentioned are just fine with tube amps.....What do you think people around here play?......

Ever played a GT8 or PODXT Live as an effects processor in the effects loop of a tube amp?

If not, dont knock them until you do.....They work just like any rack unit with stompbox control in compact easy to carry unit.....

Thats what this discussion is about - not replacing a tube amp.....sheesh.... :rolleyes:

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Originally posted by dot-dot-dot



You might hear quantisation noise (bloody unlikely) but turning your guitar down wouldn't make any aliasing problems more apparent. I find it hard to believe that the ME-50 has aliasing problems anyway; such issues were put to bed by the early 90s if not before.


A real soundsmith would get on with getting the best from the gear they had rather than complaining about its shortcomings, real or imagined. I've seen plenty of pros (and amateurs) getting great sounds with digital multiFX.


That said, the ME-5 is/was a great unit.



won't hear it?
you might wanna see an audiologist.....the me 8,10,30,50 and the whole gt series do that...particularly if you use the noise gate.
the lower your volume is, the more apparent these digital artifacts become, and the lamer your guitar sound becomes.
they may be quieter than they were back in the day...slightly...but it's still there.
i realize alotta cats don't use the knobs on their guitars, but some of us do...mine is all over the place depending on what i'm playing.... and hearing digital noises and poor noisegating just don't work for me.
;)

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Originally posted by pinkjimiphoton



won't hear it?

you might wanna see an audiologist.....the me 8,10,30,50 and the whole gt series do that...particularly if you use the noise gate.

the lower your volume is, the more apparent these digital artifacts become, and the lamer your guitar sound becomes.

they may be quieter than they were back in the day...slightly...but it's still there.

i realize alotta cats don't use the knobs on their guitars, but some of us do...mine is all over the place depending on what i'm playing.... and hearing digital noises and poor noisegating just don't work for me.

;)



I don't really notice it on the GT-8 at all. The noise gate, as I stated earlier, does cause some problems IMO, but I've not really noticed "digital aliasing" on the GT-8.
That said, I thought that the Tonelab had the best amp sims overall because of the "feel" that it had. The tube didn't really have a lot to do with that though, it was in the output stage as part of a fake "power amp" stage in the unit. If VOX would have merely put that FX loop in a different location in the chain on the TOnelabSE then I would have never sold it, but it was extremely limited.

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Originally posted by Moltisanti

ok first of all cheers to pinkjimiphoton for telling it like it is


i'm not on a mission to p ss people off who have an ME-50, it's just in my experience (which is vast by the way) they sound thin and cheap when in proper volume gig situations, the distortions are weak and have no body whatsoever, i'm sorry but if you put it next to a real amp (with valves in it) there's no way you could ever say that they sound good.


The reason i started this thread is because i'm still yet to find a better way to get a natural tone from my amp at volume with effects than using stand alone pedals on a board.


hence the rackmount discussion.


go and make yourself a brew, calm down a bit and chiiiiiiiiill

 

 

you nailed it all down bro....exactly the problem, and why i said "bedroom tone"......take 'em on the gig, and they dissapear...tho they ARE ok if you're in a power trio that doesn't play too loud...

my bud benny has one of them vox tonecrap deals, the big one with all the baubles....and one of them fender hotrod de-somethings...and came to sit in at the last gig i did.

even tho he was playing brand new top of the line crap, he got completely buried by me and my cheesy broken down princeton (it was running about 15 watts class b, cuz the driver stage was breaking down) and he had a 60 watter with a ridiculous amount of preamp capability....and the typical bedroom tone, hyper distorted and ultra wet.

i made him turn that {censored} off, and i STILL was burying him.

other gigs he's come to with his boss gt6 and his gt 8, and his jcm2000 hunnert watt half stack....

i use my usual rig most of the time, a mesa studio pre with an me5 in front of it, a gp8 in the loop feeding a solid state 80 watt aside marshall power amp thru 2 12's....

walked all over his ass then, too....and not because i was on 11 or 13, more like about 4....when i got him to go direct, he sounds great.

put your tone thru that crap, and it all goes south.

my experience with them digital craptone creators is that if you play real quiet, they sound great....or if ya play so loud you can't tune your axe without a tuner, or with that spam-suckin trailer trash scooped mid tone, they sound great, too...particularly if you're the only guitarist...but in the REAL world....

for the record, i was a classically trained upright bassist,been playing guitar since 69 when i was 7, and have played damn near every kind of music there is in any contemporary setting...from the delta to chicago, from the allmans to zappa and all points inbetween.

i too, used a gt3 professionally for 4 of the last 5 years fronting Smokin' Herb.....and found the only {censored} actually usefull to me were the tap tempo function, the reverb and some echo...the rest was baubles and beads to protect the eyes from seeing the naked emperor truth...by itself, it sucked ass....the little korg ampworks gizmo has way better modeling and tone (i get told that by my guitar slingin' buds, they don't believe me when i say i never mic a guitar amp)....i finally got bored with it eating up my pedal board, and traded it in...where it still sits, indeed...and went back to the me5...

my tone's mostly in my fingers, so i can get it outta whatever i play thru (jc120's are a little hard, lol)....put a gp8 in the loop,so ican control it withan fc200, and i can do all the important stuff i could do with the gt3...but with tone...and all that i'd been missing came back....that phatass cheeky tone i had used for years.

of note tho, i don't use ANY effects to create my tone, i just use them to enhance it, which may be where these differences of opinion come from...someone that relies on the pedal to create their sound may well be entirely jazzed by it....but if ya do what i do, playing in pit orchestras, playing blues, playing classic rock, country, gospel etc...them digital boxes just don't cut it.

end of rant.

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I dare someone to demonstrate how an all-in-one or midi is less clicking than boxes. By the time you do all your bank switching, control off/on {censored}, you're in for triple or quaduple the clicks. Plus, your on the fly sound combinations are limited to what you've pre setup up. It's a farce. The emporer is wearing no clothes!

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