What are guitar pedals used for? This is a question that many guitarists ask, especially those who are new to the instrument. Guitar pedals are the devices that guitarists use to modify the sound of their guitars. They can be used to create a wide range of sounds, from clean and simple to distorted and complex.
Here’s a look at what guitar pedals are and how they’re used.
What Are Guitar Pedals Used For?
Guitar pedals, sometimes referred to as “stompboxes,” are a helpful tone-shaping instrument in the guitarist’s toolkit. They are foot-pedal boxes that generate guitar sound effects.
The key to attaining that guitar tone you want is to use an effects unit of some form, specifically if you want to sound like The Edge (David Howell Evans, the guitarist from U2).
To generate their luscious soundscapes, many worship-music guitarists use various effects pedals. It’s incredible how well these pedals can create a single instrument sound so rich.
How To Use Guitar Pedals?
The first task after purchasing your first pedal is to properly connect it to your guitar and amplifier. This is quite simple, although it does require a few items. Normally, we connect our guitars straight to the amp’s output jack. We need to adjust the way we connect our guitars whenever we add a guitar pedal to the rig.
For every pedal you purchase, you’ll need two guitar wires. One cable connects to the pedal’s input, and another connects to the pedal’s output. The input and output jacks are usually labeled on most pedals, although the convention is for the input to be on the right-hand side of the pedal and the output to be on the left. You’ll need only two cords for your complete rig when you only have one pedal.
How Do You Connect Guitar Pedals Together?
You’ll need extra cords if you use more than one guitar pedal. Two guitar pedals, for instance, will require three cables: one to connect the instrument, one to link the pedals together, and a third connection to connect to the amplifier.
Patch cables can be used to connect guitar pedals together. Patch cables are extremely short cables that are used to connect pedals. These small cables help to keep the pedalboard neat. The more pedals you acquire, the more important it is to maintain your pedalboard organized.
Popular Guitar Pedal Types and Their Uses
The sheer number of available pedals can be overwhelming, especially for beginners. It’s essential to know what each pedal does and how it can help you shape your tone. Here are some of the most popular types of guitar pedals and what they’re used for:
- Boost Pedals: Boost pedals increase the overall volume level of your guitar signal. They’re often used to provide a temporary volume boost for soloing or to kick the front end of your amp for extra drive.
- Overdrive Pedals: Overdrive pedals are designed to provide a distorted sound. They’re one of the most popular types of guitar pedals and are used by many different genres of guitarists.
- EQ Pedals: EQ pedals allow you to adjust the frequency response of your guitar signal. They’re often used to boost or cut specific frequencies.
- Distortion Pedal: Distortion pedals are designed to create a distorted sound. They’re similar to overdrive pedals but usually provide a more extreme distortion.
- Chorus Pedals: Chorus pedals add a slight delay to your guitar signal and create a “wet” sound. They’re often used to thicken up the sound of a guitar or to make clean-sounding rhythms sound more lush.
When Should You Use a Guitar Pedal?
This is a difficult question to answer, and most guitar professionals differ on the answer. Some argue that you don’t need a pedal until you’re a seasoned professional, whereas others argue that everyone, including total beginners, requires one.
The world’s best guitarists all had an extraordinary collection of guitar pedals that they considered nearly sacrosanct, and they seldom, if ever, considered replacing them.
That said, playing the guitar with no effects or changing your tone is totally doable. If you use a pedal from the beginning of your adventure, you may be able to learn quicker and discover new methods to sharpen and develop your talents.
So, what are guitar pedals used for? As explained, guitar pedals can be used to connect your guitar to your amplifier or to other pedals in your rig. They can also be used to boost your signal, create a distorted sound, or adjust the frequency response of your guitar. Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide when and how to use them.