Stomp Box & Pedal Pros:
You can choose combination’s of stomp boxes one at a time or multiple units. You can only choose one and then you don’t need to lug the whole FX box with you to a gig. You can add or subtract them independently.
You can build your own pedalboard, or buy a pedalboard that has a built in power supply and if one pedal fails (unusual) the others keep working.
You will lose all your presets when the memory battery dies, so as a precaution change the battery every 6 months, especially if you use a power supply like a 1Spot. It’s easy to adjust and dial in sounds with stomp-boxes. The amount that each pedal changes the signal level and noisiness is easy to adjust. You can get decent pedals even for cheap.
Even used ones at pawn shops or flee markets and EBay. New ones have unusually long guarantees which is something to think about. Most manufacturers supply replacement parts for those of us that are handy with diagnosis repairs.
You can get an almost unlimited number of (effects) FX with a Multi-Fx machine. You can chain together several boxes and get an unbelievable array of FX with any MIDI controller of your
choice. No need for excessive batteries and cables everywhere, just a single MIDI controller is sufficient. You have a tremendous amount of amps to model after emulating almost any amp your favorite guitar player uses. Allowing you to experiment with your sound and manipulate your original sound into something personal and unique really easily.
You get all the gear in one organized rack unit, keeping your setup clean and organized. You can backup your settings via MIDI. You don’t get extra ground loops or extra noises, in fact, usually a noise-gate is included. No worrying over lots of cables and messy confusion. Cost is another extremely attractive feature of a Multi-FX controller, as opposed to having 10 or 15 pedals or even more. One of the biggest suppliers of Multi-FX , Processors and Guitar Effects Pedals is Musicians Friend. Their service, low prices and purchasing options are unmatched by anyone else. Most purchasers are blown away and become unsure of what to choose based on the selections of products available. I recommend reading everything possible before a purchase, although Musicians Friend and Guitar Center have very liberal return policies
Stomp Box & Pedal Cons:
Stomp Boxes can be a pain in the a.. to fit on a decent board. Putting them in the correct order is complicated, time consuming and important and requires experimentation. Meaning that one may put the pedals inline with the amp (output) and then straight to the guitar (your input), or perhaps use the effects loop built into an amp for certain effects too.
Powering them can be a problem also. There’s a lot of short cables and longer cables needed to connect your pedals together, and you need a power source on the board. Unless you get a board with a built in power source. Often pedals have varying output levels; one pedal might load your amps input while another may dampen it. There may be some hiss and hum problems and definitely some connector issues at the wrong times. Certain pedals are excessively priced yet offer but one effect only. But in most cases, with experimentation you can get the sound you want. Guitar effect pedals are old fashioned in terms of player age groups. Older players grew up using stomp boxes and their imaginations only.
It’s hard to knock Multi-FX. One of the few concerns I have is that a battery failure or power spike may cause you to lose your hard found presets. Again, I can’t stress how important a good backup battery is. Backing up your effects to a computer through MIDI is a great way not to lose your mind if you lose your presets! The input signal experiences a considerable amount of electrical manipulation, which offers you the particular amp combos and effects you choose to employ. There is more of a learning curve involved with most of the FX tools available and that is one of the few drawbacks. The only other drawback that really seems relevant to me is that manipulating musical sound is not a science. Therefore one may never get the exact tone that perhaps can be duplicated by one or more of the many specialized stomp boxes available. This is particularly noticeable at stage volumes as opposed to playing at home or at a quieter venue.
I suspect their may be other disadvantages and advantages to either setup that I am not mentioning. GPC looks forward to your input and what setups you use. I know people who use a combination of both in order to satisfy their craving for the perfect tone.
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