Suggestions on first pedal(s)

Hive mind, what pedals would you suggest for someone who currently has none (save for a tuner pedal). I’ve been seeing compression as a good start, but I’m not too sure of what it does except to even out loud n quiet while you play.

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Maybe you should check this existing thread:

Oh, and also go to this thread and introduce yourself! Welcome to the BassBuzz forums!

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Other than gettting into some ‘odder’ tone shaping, yes, that is what it does.
What pedal you should think about next is a very easy answer…

A: Depends

I would think about what you want vs. what you need, and if need is anything.

Here is a great site that lets you play via your DAI or sound clips with a LOAD of pedals.

Another great way to understand what you might want in a pedal for little money (especially if you find one used) is this…

There’s delays and reverbs, there are preamps to shape your tone into certain hardware amp sounds, and lots of other things, the world is your oyster, or, you can skip all the oysters and just play.

You can also do all of this with plug-ins in a DAW instead of a physical pedal if you like.
It’s a big deep rabbit hole, up to you to step in or not and how deep.

My most used pedals (aside from tuners) in order

  1. preamps (with drive/distortion/etc at times)
  2. compressor (for just playing, I use plugins for recording, much easier to work this way)
  3. Reverb

Awesome! Thanks!

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Inexpensive and has a variety of interesting effects. Thanks for the tip!

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This website is insane! Thank you for sharing!

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I agree with @John_E on the B1x4.

Other than a tuner and an Boss RC30 Looper pedal I have no others for Bass.
I went down the pedal costly rabbit hole with my guitars many years ago. Never again.


A tuner, a compressor, an octave, and an overdrive/distortion/fuzz. The B1x4 provides all that but IMO it’s much more fun to play with standalone effects. YMMV.

I can recommend the Bass Big Muff from Electro Harmonix as one of the most fun pedals to get started with. Especially combined with an octaver it sounds absolutely amazing. I would park compressor for when you are more comfortable with effects.

You don’t have to go in the costly rabbit hole if you keep it at 4-5 pedals max and avoid boutique pedals.

Runner-ups: Chorus is also nice but it really depends on what kind of music you like to play, the same goes for an Envelope Filter. Reverb is more for a pleasant sound at home practice and not something I would consider for gigs.


If you play passive instruments you cant go wrong with an eq/boost pedal. An eq pedal is just useful and the boost will come in handy ,especially if you get into envelope filters down the road. You could buy a preamp pedal instead but I always prefered the eq/boost pedals with my passive basses because I dont to really do anything with the tone other than eq’ing and preamp pedals can definitely color your tone. I strongly recommend Singular Sound’s Beat Buddy pedal to all new players. Its better than a drum machine and will be the best investment you make as a beginner (other than lessons) Dont bother with the Mini version. Get the Original even if you have to get a used one. They are expensive but no other piece of gear has helped me become a better player more than that drummer in a pedal. Cheers✌️


I recently just got my first pedal. A Singular sound Beatbuddy. Its not inexpensive, but adds a drum beat for playing around or a metronome for practice.


Love mine.
Love that I found it used for &199 too!


I found Groove Monkee patterns on Bitorrent and im not ashamed to say it. As expensive as the pedal and footswitch are I am not throwing another 250-300 bucks to Singular Sound to get their sound packs. I buy drum kits from them because I dont have the patience to create those myself. I use the older version of their editor to make songs and thepatterns work with a phone app as well(Groove Arrainger) so I can stream them over bluetooth to my Darkglass Element .

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Beatbuddy has been around for a while and years ago I considered getting it and Band In A Box.
Then I discovered the Reaper DAW, and as I already had a midi keyboard, was able to program drum backing tracks, and even add other instruments on separate tracks and before you know it I had a complete backing track. Cost was $0.

A decent 4 octave midi controller will set you back a few hundred dollars but IMHO is worth it. The Reaper DAW is free but be warned it has a very, very steep learning curve.

@howard can probably explain better than I how useful and productive a midi controller paired with Reaper, or the DAW of your choice, can be.

These are just my thoughts and mine alone. YMMV


This what prompted me to mention Reaper and a Midi contoller :+1:

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This is certainly what I do but probably only makes sense if you plan to be recording and using a DAW for that. Any DAW will work.

I’d recommended a good drum plugin VSTi. These will come with lots of patterns and kits themselves, and it is easy to add more yourself. I just do my own drum tracks.

You don’t need a MIDI controller for this; I just program them using the MIDI editor in the DAW, myself. A MIDI controller is required if you want to play them yourself though, which can be fun.


Technically, it’s $60, but if you choose not to support the developer, he doesn’t prevent you from continuing to use it…


Is anyone familiar with this:

LEKATO Drum + Looper + Tuner Guitar Pedal 30 Drums 4 Slot Loops 11mins Recording

Looking at it on ebay for around $70 Aussie dollarbucks.
Tuner, looper and drums.
I have played around on Garage Band on an Apple someone gave me but I find it unwieldy (not having a manual) and I hate Apples.
I haven’t really got the hang of Reaper (probably because I haven’t invested the time).
I really just want something to plug into the amp and this looks ok.


Yeah was gonna say, one of the best $60 spent for me.


I’d go for a B1four instead, it has all that and a lot more.


Fair enough- I was looking at those too, just need to save up the spare monies.