How to achieve octave shifted sound with Electric Violin?

July 13, 2020, 3:00 PM · Hi all,

I'm quite new to using the electric violin along with amps, pedals, etc. I've been wondering for a while how to achieve a similar effect to what you hear in this piece from 0:30.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5RUsJOMK2ms

It sounds like the violin has been pitched down an octave, with a reverb and delay effect. I'm only struggling to replicate the effect to sound as good as it does in the song. I was wondering if anyone more experienced had any suggestions as to how to achieve that specific sound? Any help would be much appreciated.

Replies (7)

July 13, 2020, 3:17 PM · Who knows. His lowest note is A. It could even be a 6-string electric, if it's a violin and not a cello. Or a 5-string viola? You'd want to emulate that? I wouldn't.
July 13, 2020, 4:00 PM · Can't access YouTube from here, but will give this a shot anyway.

I used an Electro-Harmonix Nano Pog pedal as the "cello switch" on my five-string electric violins. Didn't think it sounded anything like a real cello, but it was close enough for covering Spinal Tap.

July 13, 2020, 6:05 PM · That does *not* sound like an octave pedal. But if you want to turn your violin into a violello, such a pedal does exist.
July 13, 2020, 6:48 PM · Electro-Harmonix Pitch Fork is also good. Not what I'm hearing here though.
July 13, 2020, 6:51 PM · Electro-Harmonix Pitch Fork is also good. Not what I'm hearing here though.
July 16, 2020, 2:16 PM · I have the pitch fork. Great pedal.

But on the yt vid it's clearly a kind of electric violin, like Gordon already wrote, a 5 or 6 string or sth.
It's easy to her that it's a piezo pickup, it has that kind of nasal tone that keeps me away from ever using an electric violin...

Edited: July 19, 2020, 6:14 PM · I agree with the others who said it doesn't sound like an octave pedal. You can accomplish a lot with just a little overdrive and spending time with your 10-band equalizer to get a whole variety of sounds. With less than 10-band you will never tame the nasality of the piezo that Tobias is talking about, and even then it's hard.

I got the Boss ME-80, which simulates a lot of that stuff digitally (the EQ is a separate pedal). I bought it because I really wasn't sure what I wanted and I thought I could explore a lot of different sounds. For what I paid (the same as one really good single EHX stomp box), it's a pretty cool device. Christian Howes uses it. Once you know what you want, though, as long as it's really a consistent sound that you want (not a whole litany of effects), then I think you need standard analog pedals. Guitar effects pedals occupy like 30 pages in the Sweetwater catalog, so you can kind of lose your mind on that stuff.

I have a friend who plays bass in a cover band, and for every song he patches the next totally different sound that he has pre-programmed into his multi-effects device. (It's a Fractal -- he loaned it to me for two weeks and I really just couldn't see myself ever using something like that. I like the ME-80 because it has knobs.)

While the ME-80 is a fun toy, honestly I'd really rather spend my violin time on just figuring out how to play better.


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