The Zoom B2.1U provides all the same features of the hot Zoom B2 plus a programmable Expression Pedal, a balanced XLR direct output, and USB interface with Steinberg Cubase LE software so you can start recording right away.
fleabass, on december 08, 2005 10 of 10 people found this review helpful
Price paid: $ 254.37
Purchased from: Eric Lindsey Music
Ease of Use: Very good to get some good sounds. Some of the distortion models are a bit harsh, but there are some nice overdriven amp sounds such as the model of the tube screamer editing patches proves quite complicated at first, but that is the same with all effects pedals. Once you read the manual supplied it becomes quite clear. A nice addition are the build in drum patterns which can be altered in tempo. While I would never use them to record things (no fills) they are good to play along to to work on keeping in time with the rhythmn section. // 8
Sound: At the moment I am using this with a John Myung Signiture bass, and a Peavey Microbass amplifier. What I can say is that this pedal condisderably boosts the volume coming out of my amp, and with some of the famous amp models (trace elliot, fender bassman) they make a clean sound sound great. There are several sounds which can make me sound like several of my favourite artists, a great slang effect which sound just like Jaco Pastorius, a nice slap sound for Les Claypool, and a really nice wah for playing Bootsy Collins lines. Most distortion models are good, some good wah effects and delay, but my favourite has to be the one modelled on Chris Squire of Yes! a combination of delay and phaser, great! The expression pedal helps a lot aswell to get the sound that you want. // 8
Reliability & Durability: The pedal seems very sturdy, the sides made from rubber and the actual pedal has a very sturdy case. I have used it live several times, though the only qualm I would have against using it live is that it is occasionaly tricky to skip from one effect to the other quickly and effectively. // 7
Overall Impression: I play lots of styles, metal, rock, jazz, fusion. I have been playing for 3 years. The annoying thing is that the AC adapter did not come supplied with it, I had to buy this seperately. I would buy this again if it was stolen as although it cannot stand up to the big multi effects pedals of Boss and the like, it has got more than enough decent effects for me to buy it again. My favourite part is the large amount of amplifier models available at this budget price. // 8
IndieMetalhead, on february 08, 2007 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Price paid: $ 183
Purchased from: www.Gak.co.uk
Ease of Use: As with all multi effects, it's like learning to swim in the deep end when it comes to editing at first. However, with the (relatively indepth) manual you can get a general idea, the effect names are pretty obvious (TS = Tubescreamer, AG = Ampeg), however some of the distortion models are harsh even when turned down, and the monosynth is pretty useless. // 9
Sound: I'm using this pedal with a Cort C4 and a Laney RB3 with a 15" cab. Due to the ZNR there's minimal noise, but some of the syth models have unsavoury background sounds and produce a huge amount of volume, which may or may not be an annoyance. Most of the amp models sound great, I have one of my patches set up so it gives a kind of Jaco sound with my fretless, and the delay effect is pretty nifty. The EQ is a good addition, where if you want to go for a scooped mid slap sound to a bassy sound you can just set up 2 patches with the differences and switch between, to save you running to the amp or buying an EQ pedal. The autowah is brilliant, but the pedalwah is slightly weak, and due to being able to change the sweeped frequency it is fiddly. // 7
Reliability & Durability: It's been gigged, it withstood it, with fresh batteries it's said to last upto 8 hours straight, which is good when you don't have an adaptor long enough to reach! The footswitches seem sturdy, and with the expression pedal being metal (rather than the expected plastic from lower end pedals) it won't break in a hurry. As for backups, unless someone were to throw it 20ft across the room into a concrete wall I wouldn't consider a backup. There aren't really any patches I depend on regardless, I get distortion from my Ibanez PD7 and I can EQ on the amp, the pedals mostly for amp models and those 'mid song doodles' at gigs. // 10
Overall Impression: I play a pretty large range of music, and this pedal does a good job of helping me switch between softer sounds and balls-out metal. I've been playing for just over 3 years, using this pedal, an Ibanez PD7, a Cort C4, a Vintage V940 Fretless and a Vintage EST96AF 5 string into a Laney RB3 + 15" cab. I bought this pedal on impulse, and it proved to be a worthwhile addition to the setup. If it were stolen/lost I would probably try my hardest to find it again, since I've spent precious time editing patches! I love the fact it has 3 outputs (USB, Stereo Jack and XLR), where I can record using the USB and monitor from the XLR or Jack. The control input is useful for turning on and off certain things (delay hold/the drum machine etc). The only thing I hate is the cheek of Zoom and GAK in stating that it comes with the adaptor, yet all I got in the box was a cardboard shape saying 'adaptor not included'! // 10
LoveThyBass, on february 22, 2008 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Ease of Use: I love the variety of sound that you can get with it. It has a lot of effects. I like how much variation you also have with each effect. The only thing I don't like about it is how there's only two Switch buttons so if I'm on setting A2 and I wanna go all the way to C5 it takes forever because I have to hit that button and if I'm on stage with that thing it's just like embarresing how many sounds come out of my amp until the sound I want comes out. // 8
Sound: I think the more clean sounding effects sound best with my Warwick fretless standered corvette bass and Behringer amp, and the more distorted sounds sound better with my Fender 5-string Squier and Schecter C4-XXX and Ampeq amp. Some of my favorite sounds are the flanger reverb effect, and the fuzz face effect. // 8
Reliability & Durability: The pedal is pretty reliable, I've never broken it and it comes with a plug in so I never have to worry about battery life. It's really small and compact wich makes it easy to just throw in my gig case and not worry about it breaking or anything like that for travel. // 9
Overall Impression: Before this I just had a Boss chorus effect for my bass and that didn't give me much variation so this helped a lot. Again, the only thing I don't like is how long it takes to switch in between effects. I wish it had more button capability so that I could Switch faster like a Zoom guitar pedal my friend has. I would'nt suggest this pedal to anyone whos an advanced bass player such as myself, I'm almost considering getting a new pedal soon. But for beginner/intermediate bass players who want a lot of veriaty of sound just for fun, this is perfect. // 8
Martin259, on march 22, 2008 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Ease of Use: This effects pedal is very easy to use, It is hard at first to know how to use the tuner and to create your own Patchs. The Patch Editing is amazing, the possibilys are Endless! You can change the delay from being Miliseconds to Over 3 seconds, Wah-Wah Strenth and there is an EQ. The manual is very simple and easy to use, Easy Step By Step instructions. // 9
Sound: I just play out of the Effects pedal with my Headphones. You can change the strenth of each Sound setting, It can be weak to strong, you can always get the sound you are looking for. With 40 patches, You have Lots of Pre Distortion Effects, Wahwah Effects and Octive Effects. Some wont sound to great, And the rest will sound Simply Amazing. // 9
Reliability & Durability: I can't always depend on it, And that's the only bad thing. The USB is clumsy, It sometimes just turns off on me, The power by Plug is very reliable and so is the battery power. With the USB, It doesn't work for about 5 days, Then just randly switches back on again for a fortnight, that's a big let down for me, As I like to do recordings on my bass. // 7
Overall Impression: Seeming as I like to play a lot of funk and slap, I really like the effects for that type of music. There is a patch which is almost Identical to the Marcus Miller sound. The main reason I Chose this Product was that It was at a good price, for a lot of effects. I was wanting to get the Boss ME-20B Bass Multi-Effect Pedal, But that costed to much, So I looked at Zoom and found this for a good price of around 90. It's worth the money for sure. // 10
Angrypacman, on june 05, 2009 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Price paid: A$ 300
Purchased from: eBay
Ease of Use: It's funny how many of these pedals I've seen around at local underground gigs. They're great value for price, and as far as sound quality, nothing compares, until you start spending megabucks. It is quite easy to use, there are no extraneous or difficult controls. Editing patches is simple, and the factory setting patches that are locked in are pretty good too. The manual makes it simple as pie. Again, you'll probably find there are certain features that can be beaten by higher end products (i.e., the "fuzz"setting might not be as good as a Big Muff) but for the price and wide variety of sounds this gets the scores. // 9
Sound: I'm currently using this with a variety of Basses, including an Ibanez GSR200, Squier Vintage Modified Fretless Jazz Bass, and a Traben Phoenix 5. The effects probably work best with the Jazz and the Ibanez, probably because they both have passive electronics, and the distortion settings on the Zoom don't work so well (I assume it's this pedal, because the Russian Big Muff I use with active electronics is fine). My amplifier is a Fender Rumble 100, and works just fine with the pedal. The sounds of most of the simpler settings (like flanger, chorus, delay, auto-wah etc) are comparable to any other pedal I've tested (and I have spent hours in music stores just testing out different pedals, stompboxes etc). Where it falls down a bit is in the more complex settings, like synth, pitch shifter and octave can be a bit weak. Some of the disortion settings also have weakness issues; they can sound empty, or mushy, or just noise. With a few tweaks you can get something halfway decent, but they're nothing compared to the higher end products. Once again, however, for this price you can't go wrong, especially if you're a beginner. // 8
Reliability & Durability: Never had a single problem with this in terms of durability. It's been through hell and back, without a scratch. It does not look like breaking anytime soon either. Solid as a brick. Its got proctective rubber sides, with a metal casing, and in my case, spends a lot of time getting bumped around in cars, and in all the time I have had it, it has never shown any problems whatsoever. Although, make sure you get a power supply for it, because it eats up batteries like you wouldn't believe. // 10
Overall Impression: I play a very eclectic range of music, from metal to jazz to funk and back again. In the end, I can almost always get the sound I want, or something very close to it. I was a beginner when I bought it, but I still use it for gigs now, several years later. I recently bought a Russian Big Muff, which works well with this Zoom. If it were stolen, I would do my best to get it back, to get back the patches I've spent hours tweaking to my own personal taste, otherwise I would probably just save up a little more till I could get the Zoom B9. For a beginner, or even if you are just a little short on cash, look no further than this baby. // 8
unregistered, on may 03, 2010 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Price paid: € 119
Purchased from: Thomann
Ease of Use: This small and sturdy thing delivers good sound, amazing for the prize I paid. It includes 40 factory presets to choose from, which helps you getting used with the effects unit and the basic controls to get the sound you want quick and easy. And that's what you'll do for a good while until you start seeing the possibilities the B2.1U has.
The patch editing provides nearly-endless possibilities for toying and experimenting around, and when you get a bit of experience through tis itnerface you can really get what you want quite easly, with the manual of course. The manual is VERY complete and explains everything you can do, and all the types of effects and their variables detailedly. Without it you'd be quite lost through the different abreviations, buttons, switches and knobs it has. Keep in mind that there's so many possibilities for the scarce controls it has so they simplified it in a way you need to learn what everything means by heart or have the manual nearby. Possibly, a more sophisticated and intuitive LED display would have helped tons. // 7
Sound: I'm using it with an Ibanez GSR 190J 4 string bass and a Marshall MB-30 combo, sometimes a set of Prodipe Pro550 headphones and BCT cables.
Some presets and effects are silent dead but others, mainly distorsions, add a buzz on the background, sometimes even annoying, but you can tweak the variables and settings of said effect to mitigate the noise. Mostly it behaves good and delivers quality effects.
The range of effects and amp simulations it includes is quite stunning, and most of them are of good quality; including flangers, auto wa-wah's, delays, reverbs (hall, room and spring), fuzz, overdrives, synths, choruses, parametrical EQ's, compressors and nosie gates that cna be mixed as custom presets and saved. The pedal can be configured to control most of the parameters and variables and can be given the sensibility, the max and the minimum parameters you want and the "direction" of the function (For example, if you want to boost the wetness of a reverb when pushing down or pulling up.
I play some covers of Muse, Arctic Monkeys, Radiohead, even Queen and other classicals and with a bit of time I can get the sound I want from the B2.1u, it's handy to have it prepared before a gig or a rehearsal session. Furthermore, there's sites on the net that allows you to share and use presets that other people have made with this unit, and there's quite a few.
The compressors and the Wah's are specially good, but what I use the most are the FX, Synths and Overdrives. They ain't bad at all either when tweaked a bit. // 8
Reliability & Durability: I actually used this on 3 gigs without any backup and it never failed. On the contrary, it surpassed my expectatives when plugged into a PA through a Marshall amp, it doesn't distort the sound of the bass or the amp at all (if you don't set it to do so).
It's sturdy and resists harsh treatment, you could kick it around for a while and not even damage it (don't do it though). I always bring it with me to rehearsal and my gigs and it's doing quite good. Just some squeaky buttons but I bet some lubricant will take care of that, and it really surprises me it's just that considering the ammount of dust and dirt it takes being on everyone's floor and under my boots. // 9
Overall Impression: Been playing for nearly two years, mainly rock, alternative and metal and it suits good. Although I could imagine users playing funky, jazz or classic rock even more satisfied with it, since it has really good simulators and effects for those kind of music.
For the price paid it was a bargain and a really fun, interesting toy to play and experiment with. And way cheaper than a rack of analog pedals and FX. Useful to mix and play with different settings and creating your own sounds. It's versatile too: It has an unbalanced input and a stereo output for headphones or your monitor amp, a balanced XLR ourput for the PA mixer as well as a control in for auxiliar devices such as CD or MP3 players, also you can set it to be before or after the amp with the pre/post Switch and a ground lifter if there's any interferance issues. Lastly, it can serve as an amateur sound card recording at 16bit/44100Hz (CD quality) trhoguh USB 1.0, it includes the software Cubase 4 LE.
Of course it could be better, it could record at 24bit/48000Hz through USB 2.0 or fireware, have more preset banks, sound better and be easier to use having a more user-friendly display, but we're talking about less than 120, and for that prize the B2.1U is a true bargain. It won't make you sound amazing, but it's not its job. It does its job good and that's to allows you to spice your bass freqs up.
8 Effects, amp simulators, configurable expression pedal, built-in tuner, D.I., basic audio recording interface, 40 factory presets, 4 banks to make your own sounds, basic beatbox included, metronome... sure it doesn't sound like an analog pedal rack but tell me, what analogic hardware gives you that much for so few bucks? // 8