Bass octave pedals are a type of guitar effect pedal that produces a tone that is one octave higher or lower than the original tone. Many current octave pedals generate tones that are two or three octaves higher or lower than the tone you’re playing. The best bass octave pedals are versatile and flexible, allowing you to modify the settings and have a large range of customisable tones at all times.
Anyone new to pedals may be perplexed by the wide range of pedals available and the nomenclature employed in the effects arena. Our job is to make everything easier for you. And we do it by describing how octave pedals work, their influence, and the characteristics that distinguish a good octave pedal. Size, design, tracking, digital versus analog mechanism, and monophonic versus polyphonic operation are among the elements we deem crucial and examined in this study.
Electro-Harmonix Micro POG Polyphonic Octave Generator
- Polyphonic octave generator
- Make your 6 String guitar sound like a 12 String
- Super-fast tracking
The Electro-Harmonix XO Micro POG, which comes in a tough aluminum housing, is my overall favorite bass octave pedal. It’s straightforward, but highly effective. Only three control knobs are available on the Micro POG: Dery, Sub Octave (for the octave below), and Octave Up (for the octave above the note coming from the dry signal). These knobs can be easily manipulated to achieve whatever level of blend between the three that you desire.
Separate dry and wet output jacks are a nice feature if you wish to route the signals to other amps, extending the pedal’s versatility even further. The Micro POG can easily make your 4-string bass sound like an 8-string thanks to its polyphonic nature, and the digital circuitry gives a level of tracking precision that must be heard to be believed.
MXR M288 Bass Octave Deluxe
- Constant headroom technology (Cht) for exceptional headroom and tracking
- True bypass
- Organic analog tone
The MXR M288 Bass Octave Deluxe with an organic analog tone is a definite winner for bassists searching for a reliable bass octave pedal that sounds great and tracks well. The MRX M288 Bass Octave Deluxe features two independent analog sub-octave voices, each with a Dry and Mid boost switch to improve the sound of our parallel clean signal. The 18-volt Constant Headroom Technology in the MRX delivers plenty of headroom and excellent tracking.
The pedal features three additional control knobs in addition to the footswitch and Mid+ switches. The Dry knob regulates the volume of the clean bass signal, the Growl knob controls the volume of the gravelly midrange tone, and the Girth knob controls the volume of the deep sub-octave tone, as the name suggests. You’ll be able to personalize and generate the type of music you want by twiddling the controls at different levels. Rotating the knob clockwise increases the volume on all knobs. The volume is reduced by rotating counterclockwise.
The Mid+ switch provides up to +14dB of tunable mid frequencies, allowing for a wider mid range and a wider tonal spectrum. To turn it on, press the switch. Moving the internal slider up and down for frequency and clockwise/counterclockwise for level (+4dB to +14dB) will then modify the frequency and volume. When the Mid+ is turned on, a blue LED illuminates, letting you know whether the switch is on or off.
This pedal will be powered by a 9V battery, an adapter, or a DC BrickTM power supply. The bad news is that you’ll have to purchase these individually because they’re not included with the pedal. However, this is a tiny amount to pay for the superior performance you will receive.
Aguilar OCTAMIZER Analog Octave Bass Pedal w/ 2 Cables
- Proprietary detector circuit for superior tracking
- Dual Filter Architecture
- Full Spectrum Tilt EQ for Clean sound
Looking for a simple, monophonic bass octave pedal that gets the job done with the bare minimum of bells and whistles? The Aguilar Octamizer could be the answer. It contains individual volume and tone settings for both the Clean and Octave (dry and wet) signals, as well as a single octave down signal. The Clean tone has a ‘Full Spectrum Tilt EQ,’ which allows you to raise high frequencies while lowering bass and low-mids for a more balanced sound.
The Octamizer is a medium-sized pedal with a steel shell. Octave Level (wet signal level), Clean Level, Octave Filter (tone color via LPF), and Clean Tone are all controlled by the four knobs (tilt EQ).
Tilt EQ (Clean Tone) reduces both high and low frequencies at the same time. Each control knob responds to the user’s input and contributes to a diversified and wide range of sounds. Analog octavers necessitate the proper playing style, pickup height, and a variety of other variables. I’ve used the Octamizer with a P-bass from Custom Shop (with rounds and flats).
Because of its outstanding circuit, the Aguilar Octamizer is in a unique position. The pedal excels in single-note lines, electronica sounds, fattening the tone, and a variety of other tasks. Overall, the pedal’s better tracking, dual filter architecture, and analog circuit demonstrate the Aguilar quality you’d expect.
BOSS Electric Guitar Single Effect (OC-5)
- The industry-standard octave pedal, updated with enhanced features
- Newly developed tracking technology provides more accurate response and natural feel with no latency
- Vintage mode faithfully reproduces the mono sound of the original OC-2
The OC-5 is housed in a BOSS metal container with controls for Level (direct signal volume), +1 OCT level, -1 OCT level, and -2OCT/RANGE, all of which are linked to the mode switch. Toggling between Vintage and Polyphonic modes is done using a mini-switch. The pedal operates on 9V DC and includes a high-quality buffered bypass footswitch (or 9V battery).
The BOSS OC-2 is the original, a 1982 coffee-colored classic that everyone adores. It’s difficult to grasp and overcome, and the OC-3, to be polite, was an unattractive version. The news of the OC-5 was all over the boards in 2020. A re-imagining of a cult bass octave pedal.
All of the bread and butter octave functions are supported by the OC-5. It goes a step further with the poly mode, which adds synth-like textures to your tone. It’s virtually latency-free, noise-free, and accurate. When compared to the BOSS OC-2 and OC-3, the tracking is noticeably better. To be honest, nothing beats the OC-3 when it comes to tracking. Bleh.
Vintage Mode on the OC-5 recreates the distinctive charm of wet OC-2 tones. The addition of the Octave +1 modernizes and expands the capabilities of the OC-5. The OC-5 is musically delightful to operate, from organ plump to warbly chime and subsonic growl. It’s a great way to get deeper with your tone without breaking the bank because to its solid design, two settings, and low latency.
TC Electronic SUB ‘N’ UP OCTAVER Pedal with TonePrint
- Next generation octave-engine - for flawless polyphonic tracking
- Classic monophonic octaver - cool old-school octaver tones
- TonePrint Editor w. Modulation - for otherworldly octave tones
If you’re a pedal addict, you understand how valuable the space on your pedalboard is. Because of its compact package design, the TC Electronic Sub ‘N’ Up Octaver could be the answer for any bass player looking for a great bass octave pedal that won’t take up a lot of room. However, just because it’s little doesn’t imply it’s lacking in functionality.
There are four knobs on the Sub ‘n’ Up Octaver: one for dry blend and three for octaves (one up and two down). A toggle switch, a red status LED, and a true bypass footswitch are also included. Monophonic octave sounds can be turned on and off on the Poly Toneprint Classic.
A bazooka is brought to a shootout by the Sub ‘n Up. The note tracking and polyphonic pitch technologies are both rather good. Subsonic mayhem and silky octave-up swells are the strengths of this octave pedal. With knob-tweaking, you can obtain useable sounds ranging from polyphony to complicated chords. In terms of versatility, it’s a cut above the competition. TonePrint does, however, require some time and effort to set up and create ‘patches’ for simple memorization. This is definitely aimed at pitch-shifter fans rather than bassists looking for a one-and-done pedal.
The TonePrint system from TC Electronics widens the possibilities even more, with various TonePrints dedicated particularly to the bass guitar, all of which are available for free via the TonePrint app. True bypass prevents coloration of your natural tone, and it also includes a superb monophonic algorithm for when you just want to go old school with single bass lines.