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Guitar effect order.

This is going to come across as a stupid question from someone who has played guitar for over 47 years... but..
What order would you put chorus, delay in?. I have mostly played acoustic guitars all these years. The last time I really dabbled in single effects units plugged into each other, I'm pretty sure I just went with whatever sounded good, used flanger, chorus, phaser, delay, compressor, EQ.

With the use of my Apollo, I can put a unison amp on input then chain 3 more effects on the channel. At the moment I use a Roland RE-201 and the Distressor, I then aux on the Apollo console to an EMT-140 for a nice plate reverb. The overall tone sounds nice now, but I have a chorus I am dying to try too, but should I just dive in again, or do you guys have a best chain way?.

When you've done laughing at me, an answer would be appreciated :D.

Cheers,

Tony

Comments

Tony Carpenter Wed, 01/03/2018 - 09:25

bouldersound, post: 454904, member: 38959 wrote: Those are all pretty much in the "whatever works" category, except that I'd tend to put reverb last unless I wanted a deliberately unnatural sound. Likewise, delay is more natural after chorus, but you can break that rule if you want.

Thanks boulder, I would always put reverb last, I guess I should have said that... but, it was the delay and chorus that had me wondering. Although a natural environment means delay and reverb are a off shoot. I'm over thinking.... AGAIN...

One more question, if I may, where would you compress, in this situation for sustained volume obviously?.

Cheers,

Tony

Tony Carpenter Wed, 01/03/2018 - 13:01

pcrecord, post: 454906, member: 46460 wrote: I would put the compressor first unless you want to skrew the delay release volume.
The other thing, where do you get your distortion (pedal or amp ?)
Distortions act as compressor most of the time...
can the effect loop of the amp put the delay after the disto ?

This is too much fun ! :ROFLMAO:

Hey Marco,

Yes, I can put compressor anywhere I like. Or use one on amp.

The unison amp has all the usual amp controls including a chain for its own effects, mic placements and speaker cabinet types. I think from memory gate, comp and also delay. I’m using the ENGL 765 plugin at the moment. I’ve got a tweed 55 and a Marshall Plexi too. Whatever I set the amp to do I can then have 3 other effects either live or printed to track. 3 separate inserts on the input in addition to a unison. I can then have up to 4 aux sends with 4 inserts per aux channel too. These can also be printed or just live.

Thanks,

Tony

Kapt.Krunch Thu, 01/04/2018 - 04:20

Chorus, delay and then reverb. Definitely wouldn't put compressor last (after reverb).

That's for what I would consider "the most natural order of things". But, as mentioned...crazy great stuff has been created by breaking the rules.

Reverb last for several reasons. First, it's pretty much like what a built-in amp reverb does. It's also what "a room" sounds like. If you put a reverb BEFORE a delay, depending on the number of delay repeats, the speed of the delays, and the strength of the wet/dry, you could be stacking up reverbs on top of reverbs. A built-in reverb or a room normally acts on all things thrown at it, and only once (not considering a really reflective room like a gymnasium). But, there's your bad-sounding example, right there. A gymnasium. Of course, as a special effect, that may be what you want...but most people probably wouldn't want to listen to something like that for long.

A chorus (or flanger, or phaser) is nothing but very fast delays with time variances between original and delayed . AND, they also act kind of a sweeping filter, which can push things in the high and low range as they sweep into those frequencies. I've tried delay into those things, and didn't find it very useful. BUT...nothing says you can't try.

But, a longer-delayed (even slap-back) chorused signal can sound cool. I have an old Maestro Phaser (the big Barbie-treadmill-looking one, with the big "Balls' and "Speed" knobs on the sides that you can work with your foot). It sounds less like a phaser, than it does a chorus, or even a rotary speaker. It doesn't have that hissy "swoosh" that most phasers and flangers have. It's "round", and almost seems to have a little vibrato, like an old Magnatone amp. That going into an analog delay is very nice.
My main gig pedal setup is Dunlop Jimi Hendrix wah pedal> old Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer> old Marshall DriveMaster > old Maestro Phaser > old Boss DM2 analog delay. If using the Fender Hot Rod Deluxe amp, I just add enough reverb to put a little hair around the edges. If using the Marshall JCM800, I run through a Fender Reverb Unit, first, again adding just a little hair.

We played everything from Hendrix, to funk, to R&B, to Clapton, Allmans and other 60's/70's rock, and blues. That setup covered everything, and I have been complimented on my tone. I never did like take to digital delays much, but then, I ain't doing U2 songs!

You have to consider what each effect is going to do to the one(s) after it. For instance (and the reason I listed my pedal chain), many people use their wah pedal AFTER a distortion or overdrive pedal. Many people (like me) use it BEFORE. Because it is basically a frequency-altering unit, placing it before affects how the distortion/overdrive pedals react to IT. And, because (as someone has already mentioned) distortion/overdrive pedals pretty much compress the signal by nature of their design, it helps tame the wide-sweeping volume from the wah pedal. So, when I play Voodoo Child, it's fairly level.

I tried the wah AFTER the Marshall pedal, and all it did was accentuate the volume variance. "YEEEEK! can't have that!"

I even got the other guitar player to change his pedal order, once I explained (and demonstrated) to him. He was sending out ice-picks!

As far as where to put a compressor? I wouldn't use one before OR after a chorus. A chorus normally has an evenly-timed "sweep", and they usually don't get out of hand in the highs and lows, unless you go crazy...which most people don't.

Phasers and flangers (and "auto-wahs" or "envelope-followers"), on the other hand, can get ugly, fast. If you run those INTO a distortion/overdrive, you may not need a compressor. If you run them AFTER, then running a compressor after them, and before your delay and reverb may be helpful, to tame out the spikes.

Just keep in mind that set improperly, a compressor can add a LOT of hiss, after it stops getting signal from the guitar. That's because it may be trying to boost all the noise from all the electronics before it.

I'm not sure anyone would want a compressor after an delay or a reverb...ESPECIALLY a reverb. As the reverb tails die down, the hiss comes up.

Anyway, that's just some thoughts. As mentioned, there is nothing that says you can plug in things anyway you want. Likely won't blow up anything (unless you kick in a runaway digital-delay buildup by kicking in "hold"!)

Try anything. Try everything. Just keep in mind what each effect does, and how each can affect the ones behind it.

Good luck, and have fun!

Kapt.Krunch

Tony Carpenter Thu, 01/04/2018 - 04:38

@Kapt.Krunch thanks for an amazingly detailed answer. When I was in my 20s I did a lot of disco songs, used flanger phaser and chorus, I just haven’t played electric guitar much since then, so probably best part of a 30 year gap :). I’ve got some lovely modelling stuff but no single pedals anymore, they were sold off LONG time ago.

The ENGL 765 has a lovely gate which my line 6 jtv69 runs in clean as a whistle at about -94db. I put the distressor before the delay today instead of after for a song I’m working on. Much nicer, reverb as you say, always last :).

Cheers,

Tony

Davedog Thu, 01/04/2018 - 12:59

Compressor- clean boosts-not so clean boosts-distortion-time based effects-reverb.........I like the chorus first in the time based stuff. I like a tremolo next and then the delay. This seems to be the cleanest and clearest chain for most things. If you have an EQ then you have to decide whether you're looking to alter the guitar's initial tone and attack, in which case it would be before everything, or whether you want to EQ a particular distortion in which case it would be before that effect. As a live use pedal order, if you have an amp capable of an effects loop, and this should always have input and output sensitivity to be really effective, then ALL time based effects should be in the loop with the distortion and drives being direct to the input of the amp. In this scenario you CAN put a drive of some sort in the line with the time based stuff in order to give an altered state of tone for these effects.

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