I assume you mean effects, not preamps and things?
Depends, if you use a lot of effects, then MIDI-controlled rackmount is the way to go, since you can program a patch that has, say, 4 effects you need for your lead tone, and another with 5 other effects for the rhythm tone. Also, if the rest of your righ is rack-based, getting rackmount fx unit is a logical step.
If all you use is just a tad of delay and reverb (which you can get from the amp anyway), maybe just getting one or two pedals would be simpler and cheaper...
I use the effects in my preamp, but might upgrade to a rackmount fx-unit one day...
I've gone both ways and while I am now currently pure pedals, I have to say that products like the TC Electronc pedal board are very intriguing. It's basically a G-Major on the floor with a rugged foot controller already build on it. It's got it's own loops so you can insert pedals and you can determine order...so for example you can have your fav OD and wah pedals routed so that hit before the preamp, then have that preamp signal via effects loop where you want all the modulation and delays happening..and control all of it with the pedalboard in one spot. Plus the processor is removeable and can be rack mounted if you wanted all the hardware completely out of sight, so the pedals you wanted in teh loops could be in teh rack with it and you wouldn't need a separate midi controller. It's a fantastic looking product but it ain't cheap.
Going the pedal only route, you get a simpler view of life and all the processor and expression pedals assignments, midi channels and change control messages complicate matters pretty significantly. So if you're a tech oriented person and want maximum flexibility and don't mind programming things, then the above product or a rack solution might play well for you. But if you're a person that is a "what you see is what you get" stomp on, stomp off sort of bloke then full pedals is what you're after. Just my experience.
Whatever happened to the Lexicon MPXG2. That was a good multiFX. And yeah pedals are kinda neat in that they have very unique tonal personalities that multiFX just can't grasp. If you must have pedals AND MIDI, then thankfully some new and affordable Bradshaw style systems are now available.
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