View Full Version : Loop Pedal or PC interface?

11-19-2017, 04:37 AM
First off I will say I have had my ukuleles for a couple years, but just recently started taking lessons and going beyond strumming basic chords. What I am looking to do is basically lay down some basic chords to play over the top of to help with my timing and get use to playing with something/someone else. My instructor was playing chords while I picked, and then we switched and I played the chords while he picked and I had a hard time with it.

I have an Effin Ukestart that I like to play with headphones at home when practicing, but I do not have an amp. What would be the best and easiest way to accomplish this? A loop pedal I may need to get a headphone amp if it doesn't have a headphone out, which isn't a big deal. The audio interface I could eventually get a microphone for if I wanted to record my Ohana without a pick up. My big concern with the audio interface, not having used one before, is delay. Is that a valid concern, or am I over thinking it?

Of course I could just play music in the background, but I'm thinking long term, and being more flexible. I would like to be able to change my strumming patterns and speed on the fly more or less if I want to, instead of being stuck to a backing track.

Croaky Keith
11-19-2017, 04:47 AM
Presumably you have a computer, so why not use it to record a backing track of you strumming, & use it to play along with. :)

There are some headphone amps that have a line in for audio, so one of them may work for you.

Last but not least, get a digital metronome to practice your timing.

11-19-2017, 09:36 AM
The simplest would be to get a decent looper pedal (starting ~$100+), and a simple headphone amp like the ones made by Vox ($40), but there are MANY other brands that are clones that sell for ~$15 and work fine too.

However the same $100+ you spend you can get an interface, and use it also for recording, and different apps as well.

The delay you refer to is called LATENCY in audio jargon, and varies with which device you use, and is present in nearly ALL recording/interface gear.

If you get an interface you want to see that it has a headphone port on-board AND that this allows for 'real-time' or 'zero-latency' monitoring, otherwise you will hear a sort of echo effect in the headphones, that is kinda like the slapback reverb you get when playing in a tiled bathroom, but a bit more pronounced.

The link in my signature below will get you to several extensive threads on recording interfaces and gear for the computer, tablet or phone (and some devices work with all 3).

11-19-2017, 06:05 PM
You might consider searching for a used Digitech Trio pedal. They came out with the Trio+ pedal not long ago and people are selling the original version for less than $100 on CL and ebay. I have the Plus version and it's a great practice tool.

Essentially it's a looper pedal with Band In A Box technology. You don't need to use the robo drums or bass features though. Just use the looper feature and you can quickly record a verse, chorus and bridge loops and create a song pattern of your loops then play along to those. It has a headphone out, you can easily raise or lower the tempo as you play and it supports a footswitch control if you want to get fancy. I found one on CL in my area tonight for $70.

11-20-2017, 03:00 AM
I have a Boss RC 3 loop station which is really simple to use and a great piece of kit. You can set the tempo and export the loops as well. They have recently redeveloped it as the RC 1. Not sure exactly what the difference is. I run it through my Blackstar HT-1R 1watt valve guitar practice amp with a bit of reverb. This has an emulated headphone output for quiet practices in the evening.