2 Signal processing

2.6 Effects loop

When using a head or combo together with additional effects pedals or rack units, it is desirable to first have preamplification and equalization, then the effects kick in, and then the whole thing is power amplified. Heads and combos don't have a separate preamp and power amplifier unit, in between which you would connect your effects. Instead, many of them provide an "effects loop", which consists of an output (send) and an input (return). The signal from the preamp is tapped and sent out, in other words you "send" it to your effects, and then "return" it back to the power amplifier section. Some heads and combos have switchable signal levels, usually you have a choice of -10 dB (line) or +4 dB (pro/studio). A rule of thumb is: pedals use -10 dB and rack units use +4 dB, but some rack units are also switchable. Always choose the higher level, but everything has to match.

© Joris van den Heuvel 2001-2009