El Grande Bass Fuzz Review

manufacturer: MXR date: 03/20/2013 category: Bass Effects
MXR: El Grande Bass Fuzz
It has three knobs: Volume, Tone, and Fuzz. It also has an additional Deep Switch, which provides crushing low-end boost. The on/off footswitch is true bypass, but even when it is on, this pedal is able to preserve a full tone on most settings.
 Sound: 8
 Overall Impression: 9.5
 Reliability & Durability: 10
 Ease of Use: 10
 Overall rating:
 8.7 
 Reviewer rating:
 9.4 
 Users rating:
 8 
 Votes:
 6 
reviews (2) pictures (2) 3 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9.5
El Grande Bass Fuzz Reviewed by: toyboxmonster, on april 10, 2009
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: C$ 109

Purchased from: Steve's Music Store

Ease of Use: As all other MXR stomp boxes, this is a very intuitive pedal. It has three knobs: Volume, Tone, and Fuzz. It also has an additional Deep Switch, which provides crushing low-end boost. The on/off footswitch is true bypass, but even when it is on, this pedal is able to preserve a full tone on most settings. The manual only states the completely obvious (in such a matter-of-fact way it almost seems sarcastic). It isn't terribly useful; I didn't even know there was one until just now when I checked. It's a simple but effective layout and includes everything that can be asked of a bass fuzzbox. // 10

Sound: The MXR El Grande is capable of a range of sounds. The Tone knob has a tremendous impact on the sound of this pedal and produces sounds ranging from a thin, trebly tinny sound to an ominous roar. Dialing the Fuzz knob just over the minimum produces a very light, very clear overdrive that provides just the right amount of crunch for the bass to be big but unobtrusive. Pointing it at about 12 o'clock results in a ballsy, slightly synthy fuzz tone. Turning it around max creates a furious fuzzy mess that sounds just a little too synthetic for my taste. The Deep Switch is a handy little thing, adding enough low end to the signal to make the bass sound like a jet engine. Some very extreme, un-MXR tones can be achieved with the Deep Switch on and the Fuzz to full - though don't try it if you Live in an appartment building. With the right adaptor (even a Danelectro will do), this pedal isn't noisy at all. Try a radioshack one (I don't recommend this), and it'll sound like a blender. // 8

Reliability & Durability: In terms of reliability, MXR pedals are generally the ones I trust most. They may not be extreme and over-the-top, but they are durable, making them the ideal brand for gain boxes (but only gain boxes). I don't think I'd even need to consider bringing any sort of backup with this pedal. The die-cast housing is as sturdy as they come. The knobs are made of much harder and more durable plastic than the ones on Boss & DigiTech pedals. The blue LEDs are not only cool, but very useful to have on a dark stage. // 10

Overall Impression: MXR has always been about simple, durable, user-friendly effects, abd the El Grande lives up to their reputation. The bass fuzz isn't capable of the completely-over-the-top harsh tones and oscillation one might expect from a fuzz, but it is a useful Tool that provides a variety of sounds and suit's a variety of playing styles. I play ambient music and noise-pop. My current bass setup is: Yamaha rbx 270 j > MXR El Grande > Electro-Harmonix Stereo Memory Man with Hazari > DigiTech Digiverb. The El Grande reacts very well to other stompboxes and sounds bright and high in the mix, even with the digital reverb abd delay. The only reason I chose this over the Bass Big Muff was it's price at the time (it was $20.00 CAD cheaper). Right now, the Bass Big Muff is cheaper than the El Grande, but if I had to choose again, I'd still buy the MXR pedal. // 10

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overall: 9.3
El Grande Bass Fuzz Reviewed by: ToddJames, on march 20, 2013
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: £ 85

Purchased from: Online

Ease of Use: This pedal is very easy to use. It only has 3 controls, volume, tone and fuzz, which are all pretty self explanatory. It also has a 'deep' button, which is basically a volume / gain boost. It's easy to find a good sound quickly by playing with controls, although you might need to turn the controls further down than on a usual pedal, especially if you have the deep switch turned on! Nothing complicated, and nothing confusing, and it comes with a simple, easy to read manual which you don't really need, but it's there if you want to. // 10

Sound: This pedal has a great sound, although it could be a little heavy for some. I bought this as an upgrade from my previous distortion pedal, because this pedal can produce some sounds I haven't been able to find on other distortion pedals. Unfortunately, it does have a very high output, so there is a lot of excess noise when the pedal is on but you're not playing. I usually play this with a noise reduction pedal at the same time, but if that isn't an option for you then you might find it a little too loud, but for me, it's fine. // 8

Reliability & Durability: I have used this pedal multiple times for gigs without a backup, and it has never let me down. I've never had any issues with it, and consider it to be very reliable. It has a very solid metal case, and the only thing that could be considered slightly flimsy would be the plastic controls, but as I aid before, I've never had any issues with it. It doesn't even have any visible scratches, which for something you stamp on is quite an achievement. You know when you buy an MXR product that it's going to have solid construction, and this is no exception. // 10

Overall Impression: I tend to use this whilst playing heavy rock or metal style, and it fits perfectly. There aren't a lot of other styles that I find distortion fits into particularly well, but I'm sure, with a slight alteration of the controls, this pedal would be able to pull it off. I especially like the deep switch, because it takes the sounds this pedal can make to a level I can't find anywhere else. This is a great pedal which I thoroughly recommend (if you can put up with or find a way around the excess noise) and would probably replace it should I lose it or if it got damaged. // 9

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