Guitar Rack gear

Rocktron, Digitech, Line 6, Behringer

I’m usually a guitar-straight-into-amp man when playing live, but I’d like to have a bit of a look at some rack gear to “enlarge my tone pallette”.

I’ve got some rack stuff in my studio; a Peavey effect unit, a J-station, and a Yamaha multi effect unit. I also have a Boss GT-5 floor effects unit.

I guess I’m asking for opinions on good, used, rack gear for live guitar. Basic rock sounds, so good distortions, delay/reverb, chorus. £100/$200 max ATM.

I’m not a great fan of Behringer gear but the V-amp gets a good following. Line 6 a bit too expensive? The Digitech GSP-7 and GSP-21 are about right but seem pretty rare on Ebay (although I missed one tonight).

So, any comments, thoughts, things to avoid, things to read, places to buy (with UK shipping).



Same answer as I gave to Mike about his synth question Xon…

Have you considered, as an alternative to rack gear, a PC with NI Guitar Rig?

I have it, and it really is a great piece of kit.

Use it live, or for recording. And when you use it for recording you can either use it direct, or record clean and use it afterwards as an FX.

Worth thinking about mayhap? :)

Nice idea “A” if you trust computers. :slight_smile: I don’t.

For rack effects, I say stick to compression/limiter, gate, graphic EQ, etc. Don’t get distortion, for sure. I have never heard a pedal/rack effect distortion that I liked better than a decent amp distortion. If your distortion from the amp you have it bad enough that you prefer a pedal or rack effect, then I’d say you need a new amp, not new rack effects. you can get a really good sound out of a small amp lined out into a power amp.

For effect, perhaps I’m just too old-school, but I like actual pedals. Large multieffects (especialy the pedalboard variety) seem daunting to me, and really not worth the trouble they provide. Rarely are the sounds worth the money you spend on them. If you scrounge around on ebay, you should be able to get a pretty good collection of good pedals for $200 (100 GBP). Or even just one or two really good ones, plus a rack compressor, gate, or whathaveyou. If I was in your place, I’d get a true wah pedal, perhap a good chorus or reverb, and phaser (could be a flange if you prefer). Other than that, you have some multi-effects, so you have delay, etc., which are pretty standard (the sound doesn’t change all that much. Just the alterability). Your BOSS floor unit gives you control of it on the fly, so I’d say you don’t need delay. Might not even need chorus. You have all the basic sounds, so most multieffects are just going to be doubling what you already have. Look for good/different pedals that will give you more diversifyable, unusual sounds than what you get with your effect unit.

One effect I don’t have, but liked, was the DigiTech Synth Wah. Totally cool. Perhaps not the right sound for you, but totally cool nonetheless.


Ok, Xon, another suggestion.

But still not rack gear, the only rack gear I used was a Boss SE50, but I only used that for vox.

But what I used for guitar, was a Zoom 3000 pedal. It looks and feels cheap and plasticky, but it’s had a hammering, I’m not light footed, it’s had beer and other fluids spilled on it and never let me down.

Here’s what other users say about it.…1

So, it’s not rack gear, so you have to programme it before you get on stage, but it has a stack of presets, and another stack of user definable settings, more than you’d ever use at a gig.

And there’s some great presets, and when you start to programme it yourself you can get some drop dead sounds.

But the thing is, it seems to be selling now for a fraction of what I paid for it, less than 50 quid I’ve seen it for.

Anyway, perhaps more trustworthy than a computer? :)