#1
I hear that effects loops are supposed to be used for time-based effects, but is it that necessary? Is there that much of a difference if I put the delay pedal in front of the amp or through the loop? I'm looking for a mid-wattage amp like 15-20 watts and I want to know how necessary it is or if it's all hype for time based effects.
#2
If you plan to use a distortion/ overdrive pedal for your dirt, it's not a big deal.

If you plan to use your amps overdrive than you will need an effects loop.

effects such as delay have to be added after the distortion. If added before it will sound really muddy.

Thats not to say that you can't experiment and try new things.
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#3
The only FX that really need be placed after dirt are reverb/delay. Some delays will handle being in front of distortion better than others though. Reverb just sounds like shit no matter what in front of the amp though. All IMO of course.
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#4
I always get flamed for saying it, but no.

Reverb is really the only thing that absolutely needs to go in the loop and nobody needs reverb; that's what deafening volume or a wet cabinet is for.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion.

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#5
from what I gather, most people think the delay should go in the loop and sounds best with one. I know the old school guys never needed it, but I might go for it since I like to crank my amps and use delays for solos or whatever.

except bubb_tubbs thinks its only useful for Reverb, and if this is the case I may need it since I use it for a lot of my recordings.
#6
^ Keep in mind if you're cranking the amp that you're going to have distorted delay tails (from the power section) even with a loop.
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#7
uh-huh. So what exactly happens if you put a delay before a cranked amp?
#8
it sounds like a delay. but as said, it distorts the "trailing off effect".

i'm with bubbs, no you don't need one.
#9
And if you really have to have those perfect repeats, a reamping rig is a nice alternative. I don't really care if an amp has an FX loop or not.
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#10
if I was looking for perfect repeats, I wouldn't be buying an analog delay. Thanks for the help guys. Now I know effects loops aren't so necessary.
#12
Quote by bubb_tubbs
I always get flamed for saying it, but no.

Reverb is really the only thing that absolutely needs to go in the loop and nobody needs reverb; that's what deafening volume or a wet cabinet is for.

I totally agree with both statements...I've been playing 16 years and have never used a loop...and I think I have pretty decent tone lol,I never use reverb either maybe alittle through the recording program but none in my rig
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#13
^ Exactly. It's generally something you add with a separate cab or post production.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion.

Feel free to express yours so I can make an informed judgement about how stupid you are.
#14
A loop's a nice option to expand your possibilities but it isn't essential. I have a standard set up for playing live and just experiment with different pedals, order of pedals, settings and (when available) putting different things through the loop.

My last head (Marshall DSL60) has a loop and I put a delay, chorus and phaser through it - still ran an overdrive, distortion and wah through the front end, though.

I'm using a Vadis (old Aussie tube amp) at present and, since the thing was built in around 35-45 years ago there's no loop. I run everything through the front end (seven pedals including my tuner) and it all sounds fine when gigging.
I do have my eye on a few amps at present (trying to find time to get to the stores to check them out properly) and all have loops. Although they are a Marshall, a Laney and a Bugera and a little larger (in terms of output) as I require something bigger for gigging than I already have.

In conclusion - you don't need an effects loop. But then it's all a matter of opinion and taste.
#15
Quote by bubb_tubbs
I always get flamed for saying it, but no.

Reverb is really the only thing that absolutely needs to go in the loop and nobody needs reverb; that's what deafening volume or a wet cabinet is for.

+1000

We all lived without an FX loop for decades and now suddenly everybody says that you can't. It's bollocks. Some of the greatest music of all time was created with the pedals out front. Even reverb works ok out front. I do it all the time.
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Last edited by Cathbard at Aug 24, 2010,
#16
Alright, here I go with an overcomplicated answer.

No, you never NEED an effects loop.

However, it is useful in certain situations.

For me, I really like to have an effects loop. I have a delay, reverb, and chorus pedal which I use pretty often (the reverb isn't for subtle reverb, I kick it in for dreamy clean sounds). If I was only using the delay, or only using the chorus, I could probably get away with putting them before my amp's distortion (I use amp distortion, not a pedal distortion).

But, I quite often have my Chorus AND Delay AND Reverb pedal on, while boosting my amp with a TubeScreamer, and sometimes using a Wah. If I had the Reverb, Chorus, and Delay pedal in front of the amp, it would sound very VERY muddy (I've tried it).

So, it really depends on how many effects you're going to stack on...I like to create very dreamy atmospheric sounds, so an FX loop is pretty essential for me.

If you're only using a delay pedal, I doubt an FX loop is going to make much difference for you.

Okay, did you get all that?

Short answer: I'm with Bubb....unless you're using a LOT of time based effects.
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#17
If you wanted to boost just volume for a solo/lead in a live band setting you would want to run a boost through the loop. I mean I'm pretty sure going through the front on the amp will boost volume, but with that it boosts the preamp gain.

If that's not the case then like people have said, you should be fine without a loop for simple stuff.
#18
Run a superfuzz through ur loop that would interesting lol
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#19
I've only ever had 1 amp with an FX loop and I never use the loop. I did play around with the loop to see if it helped some FX and I found that it didn't and with some FX it made the tone much worse. It's all opinion but I don't think you need one. They are nice, for some people, but I think that most guitarists can be perfectly happy without one.