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Thread: True Bypass, Do you really need it? Reply to Thread
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  Topic Review (Newest First)
03-10-2010 03:35 PM
Re: True Bypass, Do you really need it?

it doesnt matter as long as its not a vintage tone sucker
11-18-2009 10:08 AM
Re: True Bypass, Do you really need it?

I really don't care about it.
11-18-2009 09:53 AM
Re: True Bypass, Do you really need it?

I don't think it is absolutely necessary, and as was previously stated, all true bypass pedals have a downside as well. Still, it's important to read up on a pedal that isn't true bypass about the buffer quality. I don't feel like I've ever noticed the serious loss of tone from my wahs, Morley and a 535q from Dunlop, or any buffered pedal but I know lots of people who've claimed this and it's enough to make me think there's something to their statements. I have noticed some noise depending on different pedal combinations I've used, fuzz being the prime culprit.
11-18-2009 07:59 AM
Vim Fuego
Re: True Bypass, Do you really need it?

Like most things in guitar, it's very difficult to separate marketing hype (or anti-hype) from the truth.
I wonder if anyone insists on true bypass pedals within their wireless setup?
11-18-2009 07:04 AM
Lussy Picker
Re: True Bypass, Do you really need it?

Nicely said eviltwin! Thanks for the info!
11-18-2009 06:22 AM
Re: True Bypass, Do you really need it?
11-18-2009 06:21 AM
Re: True Bypass, Do you really need it?

Consider the guitar as something that drives the signal chain.

Ideally the first thing your guitar "feels" is the high impedance of a tube (or similar solid state circuitry).
High impedance means there is very low current in the path between the guitar and the amp.
Low current means preserved tone, irrespective of any capacitance in the line, since the guitar doesn't have the power to drive such a line, unless it's got active pups or a built-in pre-amp.

Put a pedal between your guitar and amp and the guitar now also feels the input of this pedal; in simple designs even if the pedal is off.
True bypass makes sure this doesn't happen. It basically creates an internal reroute around the pedal's circuitry.
The guitar now feels the amp at the end, but through a series of switches and lots of short cables and connectors.

So there is a catch, the added bypass circuitry and added cables add resistance to the line.
Poor switches and connectors, such as those in many true bypass pedals will degrade signal quality.

Another option is to build pedals with high impedance inputs. These are known as buffered pedals.
They basically have a tiny amp at the input. With a tiny amp at the output as well, they can drive long cables and complicated signal paths,
since they now have the juice to provide current. Most Boss and Ibanez pedals follow this design.

Buffered pedals will not degrade/change tone, as long as you don't overdrive their input.
However, they will introduce noise and linking many adds noise to noise.
Specific combinations of vintage pedals and buffered pedals may completely change the feel and sound of those (vintage fuzz for ex.)

You could try to drive a number of true bypass pedals with a single buffered pedal (and a buffered pedal at the end).
But that way you are still depending on the usually crappy true bypass switching.
11-18-2009 01:40 AM
Re: True Bypass, Do you really need it?

Can someone describe how it works please?
11-17-2009 11:55 PM
Re: True Bypass, Do you really need it?

I don't use much in the way of processing (I'm going from guitar-wah-amp at the moment) but I was never happy with any wah until I picked up a true-bypass one. Now I know wah's rob tone more than some pedals, but I honestly couldn't use any other ones I've had. So much high-end loss... it was like switching to different (and worse) pickups or something. So yeah, I think true-bypass can be a really great thing (as always, depending on your situation/application).
11-17-2009 11:36 PM
Lussy Picker
True Bypass, Do you really need it?

Alright so there's this fuss out there that everything has to be true bypass to preserve sonic integrity, but do we really need it?

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