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November 17, 2011 at 10:15 pm #108196Hi folks, can anyone help…
I recently got a Pitchfacter, which which has replaced my Whammy DT and added loads of new functions to my set up. I'm a bassist playing live electronica. I have a small 'issue' with the pitchflex setting (which I'll be using a lot) and wondered if anyone could help.
I use it with an expression pedal and I swell from unison to +2 octaves (on A – Set B to be off). Sounds lovely, but when its 2oct up I get a strange crackle/distorted sound when I touch the string. It's slight, but annoying. the tone is still there – at 1st I thought it was my speaker farting, but now I think its a kind of glitch/artefact form the sound (maybe because I have an active bass??).
If I run my OC-2 on -1oct in front of it (so I have a -1oct signal) then swell the same setting to +2 oct the 'fart' is slightly more audible. I'm running to the assumption that this is because the OC-2 has slight glitching as well and the combination of the 2 makes it worse.
It does sound a little bit like the pedal is being fed with too much gain though… but reducing the signal going in seems to make no difference and the pedal peak light it not coming on… It's a shame as this mode is superior in every way to my whammy IV & Whammy DT, except they don't glitch like this as the +2 oct point.
A friend has suggested it sounds as though the noise of my strings being grounded by the touch of the string is being amplified?
November 18, 2011 at 10:37 pm #122835ameyrairikarMember
Sounds like you might be hearing the pitch shifted (+2 octave) audio of your finger/pick hitting the string. If your impact on the string is loud then it might sound like its distorted .
November 18, 2011 at 11:08 pm #122836
Thanks for the reply. This is the conclusion I have come to as well – however if I push the expression to to the toe (+2 octave) and litterally just tap the strings with my finger, so gently that no real audio sounds you still get the rustle/fizzle of the string being tapped.
To ensure it was not a grounding issue etc on the bass I have tried another instrument of a similar style plus an instrument not grounded to the bridge (DeArmond Ashbory) and all do exactly the same thing.
I have found that reducing the bass frequencies before the pedal reduce the level of 'distortion' (so taking the octave down effect away reduces it, rolling back the bass on the instrument reduces it and lowing the gain trimpot of the channel on the line selector it sits in reduces it also – But at volume it is always still there. It's off that the bass frequency is related as my cab uses low pass-ed speakers (LPF at 1khz) and has a mid-driver and tweeter for everything above that (in the same way you'd use a PA sub and top) and the sound is only amplified though the tweeter and mid driver. So its a high frequency distortion that it amplified by low frequencies? Confused 🙂
November 23, 2011 at 8:58 pm #122854
Spent a little more time investigating this –
There are actually 2 sounds.1 is digitalised which I have learnt is the sound of the pedal in the up octave settings of pitch flex. I was used to the Digitech whammy sound in these areas, which crushes and rounds off your tone massively. The Pitchfactor is much more lively and true to the top end spark in my sound. Not a problem, just a case of getting used to the tonal shift.The distorted version of this sound seems to be down to the interaction between the Boss OC-2 and the Pitchfactor. When the pitchflex goes past the +1 oct position it seems to pick up some of the OC-2's gain in an ugly way and adds this low volume 'fart' into the signal.I thought it may be my pedal so I borrowed 2 others from friends and they all have the same result. I tried it with an MXR octave pedal on a similar setting and it's noise free…Just one of those things where 2 pedals don't like each other! I'll find a work around….Shep
December 3, 2011 at 1:33 am #122894bermelMember
I'm glad you found the origin of the issue. Have you you tried with a passive bass? The high output from your active bass in addition to the high output from the OC-2 could be the problem.
December 3, 2011 at 8:40 am #134035
Unfortunately I don't own a passive bass. To be honest I'd be more likely to stop using the Pitchfactor than I am stop using my bass though. I'll find a work around in time!
December 5, 2011 at 3:48 pm #134038wedelichModeratorEventide Staff
I'm pretty sure the noise you are hearing in your setup is mostly due to the OC-2 creating sub-harmonics below what the pitchfactor was designed to deal with.
For example: the fundamental frequnency of the low-E is 41.2 Hz, and a partial 1 oct. below that is at 20.6 Hz, right on the edge of human hearing. 2 oct. below is 10.3 Hz, and most speakers don't even reproduce this, and it really just becomes extra noise for the PF to deal with when has to make pitch-shifting decisions in real time.
The bass mode setting in PF lowers the minimum pitch that the PF will shift accurately for, at the slight expense of tracking speed (but the lower pitch setting also buys you more polyphony). I would suggest using the bass mode, but I know for a fact that the minimum pitch in bass mode is set to a B0. (the lowest string on a 5-string bass). Any pitches below that might not always shift with musical results.
Also, it might not be what you want to do, but have you tried reversing the order, as in go from PF to OC-2?
December 5, 2011 at 4:00 pm #134039
Thanks for the reply.
It is definately due to the OC-2, however I do not use the -2 Oct setting. I am mainly playing around the 12th Fret on the E string with the pedal producing the E 1 octave lower (like that of an open E), I do this for the tonal structure of the OC-2 (Synthesised and smooth). I certainly playing nothing lower than a B. I actually play a 6 string and can honestly say that with the OC-2 off the effect happily tracks the open B string without the 'fart' the OC-2 put in.
Actually if I have the OC-2 on and play something on my G or high C string I still get the distorted fart sound – It appears to be an inherent part of those 2 pedals working together.
As for the effect order – The OC-2 needs to come before my dirt effect and the pitchfactor after them. Reversing the effects removes the synthesised tones I seek to create. Thankfully most of the time I use dirt effects in conjunction with the OC-2 and as such the sound I hear through the Pitchfactor while using the pitchflex setting is masked by wals of fuzz and bit crushing… It's just the odd time that I use it on my 'clean sound' (which is the OC-2 on -1Oct mode) that it's an issue.
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