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MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion

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The MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion is more than just a direct box. It's got so many features, you may wonder how you ever did without it! I...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

Go direct, sound great!

The MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion is more than just a direct box. It's got so many features, you may wonder how you ever did without it! It includes a distortion channel with gain, volume, and blend controls; a noise gate to help keep it clean; a Color control; and 3-band EQ control that lets you dial in any tone you need. It also provides phantom power, and sports a parallel output jack for flexibility in routing. Whether you like it sweet and clean or hot and nasty, this DI does it all!

FEATURES
  • Distortion channel with gain, volume, and blend controls
  • Color knob
  • 3-band EQ
  • Phantom power
  • 1/4" and XLR outs
  • Parallel output jack
Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
MXRM-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion
 
4.9

(based on 79 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (69)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (10)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Excellent sound quality (9)
  • Responsive (8)
  • Versatile (8)
  • Compact (7)
  • Good selection of effects (5)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Performances (8)
  • Amateur recording (7)
  • Home studio (7)
  • Professional recording (7)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (7)

Reviewed by 79 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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(13 of 13 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Sleeper DI box

By upIHg.OBE

from Undisclosed

See all my reviews

Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

If you are looking for a DI unit for bass with some EQ, distortion and channel switching possibilities with a pristine bypassed tone that is phantom powerable - this is the unit for you. Trust me - I've tried several.
I've tried several bass-specific DI boxes from sansamp (bass driver deluxe and standard, VT deluxe and paradriver). Compared to all of them the MXR M80 beats them in the one area I care about the most : it has pristine bypassed DI tone - no added hiss or hum and no loss of highs or lows.

The more time I've spent with it the more impressed I am with it. It is very, very versitile. You can use either channel as a mute (for example) or the clean channel as a boost.

The color switch is a bit extreme in terms of a mid scoop. Yes, it will sound great solo'd but you will get lost in a mix... I just dial down the bass and increase the mids and I get a nice 2nd clean tone. Then I add a touch of gain, blend it in and I get a bit of grind that helps cut through a mix.
Built like a tank. Never a problem with it. I always use it phantom powered and it has worked superbly. I don't bring my amp to gigs anymore since I got this pedal.
I have three pieces of equipment I bring to every gig - a bass, a tuner and the M80. I HIGHLY recommend this unit. The distortion is NOT very tube like imho, however, I think it gives a nice tone when used sparingly. When using more distortion, it can get pretty outrageous, which you might like but I find little use for.

(6 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

I left my amp at home

By The Bass Playin' Trucker

from Hanpton, GA

See all my reviews

Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

I was considering the SansAmp, Eden WTDI, & Seymour Duncan Paranormal pre-amp boxes. I took a chance on this one and I'm very pleased. I like having 2 channels. The distortion channel took me a little while to get set the way I wanted, but that's just because I was being picky. The distortion channel does NOT suck out your bottom end. The best overdriven/distortion I've messed with. Distortion channel can be used clean depending your gain & blend settings on the pedal. I bought a power supply, but love the phantom power capability. I use that at my church. I also don't have to take my combo amp anymore. The sound guy has better control of me in the house. Got compliments from one of the guitar players too about this pedal. I also use this box to boost my signal from a bass of mine that has a lower signal. This thing is built like a boat anchor. It's heavy, but that's good in my book because I think it will be durable. It seemed to me that some of the lower notes on the B string didn't have as much sustain thru this box. Could be my bass though. Not a huge bother to me. Great value for the $$$.

(5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

A Solid D.I. with great features

By DukeHurricane

from Conroe, TX

About Me Experienced

See all my reviews

Ask me a question

Pros

  • Compact Design
  • Excellent Sound Quality
  • Good Selection Of Effects
  • Responsive
  • Versatile

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Amateur Recording
    • Events
    • Performances

    Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

    This is a solid D.I. with great features in a solid, compact design.

    If you are looking to plug your bass straight through to the soundboard, mixer, or PA then I would highly recommend this unit. It has many power options including 9V battery, 9V AC power, or Phantom power (power comes through the XLR out from the mixer).

    I also found it to be a nice pre-amp for my solid-state combo amp and can get great sounds from it.

    The distortion is pretty good! I wasn't expecting a lot but it impressed me. It has a built-in smart noise-gate that is switchable (only usable with distortion channel). The blend knob is handy for blending the distortion in with clean signal. There are separate volume controls for clean and distortion. All in all, it is a very usable distortion channel.

    If you are looking for crazy distortion, and don't need the functionality of a D.I., I would look for a standalone pedal like the Boss ODB-3, which I also own.

    The main difference I found between the MXR M-80 and the Sansamp D.I. is the ability to adjust the EQ on the mids. With the Sansamp, you can boost either Lows or Highs but with MXR you can boost or roll back highs, mids, and lows. There is also a "color" switch which is comparable to a 'mid scoop' on other units. Adjusting the EQ to subtract mids and using the "color" switch can be OVERKILL so use it wisely.

    Overall, this is a great, functional product that serves it purpose very well.

    (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Made my tone

    By davidjohndesign

    from Portland, Maine

    About Me Experienced

    Pros

    • Excellent Sound Quality
    • Good Selection Of Effects
    • Responsive
    • Versatile

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Home Studio
      • Performances
      • Professional Recording

      Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

      This pedal literally made me go from absolutely hating my tone to loving it. I didn't even know it existed until I went to my local music shop and saw it next to the sansamp I went there to buy. Tried them side by side and within minutes my mind was made up. So much more control, better build quality, and less expensive = no brainer. You will love this thing, especially if you want more of a tube sound but on a solid state budget. I would buy another in a heartbeat and I absolutely refuse to plug in without it.

      (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Indispensable

      By casbonano

      from Virginia

      About Me Experienced

      Pros

      • Compact Design
      • Excellent Sound Quality
      • Good Selection Of Effects
      • Responsive
      • Versatile

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Amateur Recording
        • Home Studio
        • Performances
        • Professional Recording

        Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

        Very rarely does a musician find a piece of gear that stick around forever. As for myself, basses and amps have come and gone but this unit has stayed. Mainly because it can make any bass or bass and amp combo sound better. Period. Indispensable piece of kit. Seriously.

        (4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        This box rocks!

        By Hatchet Man

        from somewhere

        See all my reviews

        Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

        I have used this box with a couple of G-K amps and as a direct box for home recording. It makes already great sounding bass rigs and guitars even better. Noise gate is a nice feature to smooth out the tone. The distortion channel is outstanding, just what I was looking for, and no loss of bass frequencies. It also gives my single channel 1001 RB2 a "de facto" Channel 2 for OD/Distortion. Sounds great with my other pedals, too. I'm sure to be finding even more uses for this device as time goes on.

        (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Great for Tweakers!

        By Insert Fancy Music Name Here

        from Kansas

        Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

        If you're like me and you obsess over your bass tone/eq, you might be prone to spending more time tweaking your knobs than actually sound checking. I bought this item so I'd have a back up if my amp died at a gig. Did I mention that I'm a little OCD? First thing I did was set my SWR working pro 15 flat on the eq, literally every knob at 12 o'clock. Then I plugged in this little guy ran it flat and pressed the "Color" switch. After boosting the bass just a little and cutting the treble just a little, it was perfect. Played the gig set up just like that. Distortion not really going to get you that old tube amp sound, but if you want to go heavy it's pretty sweet, too.

        (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Great preamp!

        By P-bass Allstar

        from SLC, UT

        See all my reviews

        Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

        I had been looking at the M-80 and the Sansamp Bass DI. I bought the M-80 off craigslist for wicked cheap and I'm super glad I got it! I haven't used the DI function on it, but the preamp itself is AMAZING. It's so beefy and fat and improves the overall sound quality a lot. The distortion function isn't too bad at all either. The Blend function is great and helps shape the overall sound. The only drawback is I wish there was a separate EQ for the distortion. But overall, it's great. I love it!

        (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Liking it more and more!!

        By Billy

        from Chapel Hill, NC

        About Me Experienced

        See all my reviews

        Ask me a question

        Pros

        • Compact Design
        • Excellent Sound Quality
        • Responsive

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Amateur Recording
          • Home Studio
          • Professional Recording

          Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

          I just got it from Musician's Friend and plugged it into my Presonus rig. Did wonders to my bass tone. Not a huge fan of distorted bass sounds, but this unit can add a little edge to the output without overpowering it. My active bass - a Lakland - gets clearer in the mix with this MXR DI box, and I look forward to making more recordings with it. As far as live performances go, if you got a good sounding amp, doubt you'll need this, but for direct recording, it's essential.

          (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Amazingly Diverse and Versatile.

          By Arctic bassist

          from Anchorage, Ak

          About Me Experienced

          See all my reviews

          Ask me a question

          Pros

          • Compact Design
          • Excellent Sound Quality
          • Good Selection Of Effects
          • Responsive
          • Versatile

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Home Studio
            • Performances
            • Professional Recording

            Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

            This pedal is quite literally an "Always on" pedal. Right from the beginning it allows you to dial in the clean tone of your dreams using not only the 3 band EQ, but a specially designed enhancer called the "Color" switch. From there, you dial in the individual distortion channel's settings to get the right amount of gain, adjust how much the signal from your clean setting blends into the distorted channel and adjust the noise gate settings to get a perfectly tuned effect in a pedal that is absolutely affordable for any player's budget. I run this pedal after a BOSS TU-3 and before a MXR M-87 bass compressor using both 4 and 5 string basses with onboard EQ's and this pedal handles anything you throw at it very faithfully. None of that digital nonsense with one level of distortion. This pedal is completely analog and reproduces your playing style and dynamics the way all pedals should.

            (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Everybody should own one

            By pharmer81

            from Nebraska

            About Me Novice

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Excellent Sound Quality
            • Good Selection Of Effects
            • Responsive
            • Versatile

            Cons

            • None

            Best Uses

              Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

              It adds nice richness to your tone, while still allowing you to make it your own. The distortion is awesome and eliminates the need for an additional stomp box. My favorite feature is that you can blend the distorted signal and the clean signal to dial in just the right amount. I use this pedal, a compressor, and a chorus, and I can get any sound I will ever need or want. The pedal is dead silent and built like a brick. Awesome buy.

              (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Greatest weapon for every bassists

              By Herman-TSTYv

              from Macau

              See all my reviews

              Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

              If you need to perform in different places, this baby can keep your tone even if you don't have your amp by your side always. Works perfectly with amps, mixing console, recording interface. and you can boost it by pressing the little knob called Distortion!

              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Great Work MXR

              By ToxicTabasco

              from Nevada

              About Me Experienced

              Pros

              • Compact Design
              • Excellent Sound Quality
              • Versatile

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Amateur Recording
                • Events
                • Home Studio
                • Performances
                • Professional Recording

                Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

                After researching all the many offerings for Bass DI, I saw a lot of hype on the MXR M80 DI+. The online reviews, and demos were tops, and the comments great. Thus, I decided to get one. After setting it up with my BB 424x, Amp and DAW, I tested it out. And I was amazed at the difference the M80 has on TONE. I'm a TONE seeker. For decades I've played guitar and use low watt tube amps like the Tweed Deluxe, and silverface Princeton Reverb to get the best tone I could without pedals. That's something I wasn't able to do with a bass guitar. But now, the MXR M80 allows me to get a wonderful tube tone for recording at low volumes. And I can now go direct into the interface for 2 great sounding bass tracks. And both give me a good bass tone that's easy to fit in the mix. When I play only with the amp, I leave the "Effect" and "Color" on all the time. It's just that good. The character of the "Color" is what I like about this pedal the most. It tightens up the sub frequencies, and rounds off the 80 to 120hz zone. Much like how I would EQ the DI signal. But it adds a smoothness that my Acoustic Amp doesn't have. Nevertheless, the M80 has all the features I need for recording: like Phantom power, and 3 band EQ to shape the Color tone much like a preamp. Also, it has a distortion feature with blend and gain controls with a gate, to tweak just the right amount of edge on the tone. And the signal is clean and strong. No tone sucking here, and no line noise unless you crank up the distortion. Yep, all they review hype was correct. The MXR M80 DI+ is a solid piece of gear that's a great addition for Bass guitar recording.

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                4.0

                its ok

                By &stringuzr

                from Bryan, Tx

                See all my reviews

                Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

                This thing is wonderful......until it randomly breaks. It sounds awesome. It makes everything sound beautiful. The eq and color switch are great, the distortion is awesome, blend knob is cool, the noise gate is ok. It doesn't cut everything out and still has a little bit of hiss. The phantom power thing never worked. The problem i had with mine is the output just suddenly stopped. All i get out of it is a hiss and random little popping sounds. Dunlop customer service sucks. They never emailed me back. I guess ill try again and buy another one just like my Crybaby. If it breaks again i will never buy from Dunlop ever again. I am sick and tired of my MXR and Dunlop gear breaking.

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Excellent for recording

                By JakeTrippATW

                from Wilson, NC

                See all my reviews

                Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

                My studio engineer had me use this while recording tracks for our next album. After trying every other bass DI box/recording interface on the market, this is the only tool that has finally given me the bass sound I've been looking for. The distortion feature is pretty cool too. Highly recommended and looking forward to getting my own for use with my live rig.

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                I'm not a Big Pedal Pusher But I do like this item

                By Econnofoot

                from Upstate SC

                See all my reviews

                Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

                Owned mine for a couple of years now, I'm not a live gigging player these days, but still do some live shows now and then and a fair amount of studio time.My take on the device it eats batteries first of all but that is pretty typical of this type of device,I don't have an abundance of outlets in my studio so I've dealt with it.Being that I use bat's I was pretty mad when the bat door tabs that hold the bat in place broke...pretty lame design.Far as what it does, with enough know twisting and time you can make some nice tones, I have a pretty plain jane old swr combo and this box gives it some nads I'll admit. I don't agree with what the lil manual/brochure thing said about settings=certain sounds. Have used it directly into my mixer and into my computer with pretty decent results.All in All I'm happy with the purchase

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                A better D.I.

                By Dexter413

                from MA

                See all my reviews

                Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

                I have owned a sansamp and I really liked it. With that said these are the reasons that I think the MXR is better; A MID KNOB!!!!, 2 channels one clean,one distortion, and a decent sound gate. I have found that the MXR works great when used in front of my amp, better then the Sansamp. I use the distortion channel mostly and it really beafs up my tone. I have used this pedal to do some direct recording and have found that the clean channel with the color button on is one of the best direct tones I have ever heard.

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Exactly What I Needed

                By Crazy Fingers Sanchez

                from Miami

                See all my reviews

                Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

                I'm a keyboardist turned bassist, with a nice and loud Hartke keyboard amp. In case you don't know, keyboard amps are basically portable PAs and don't provide any tone or color to the signal. I bought this pedal to simulate a bass amp through the Hartke so I wouldn't have to drop a load of cash on a new bass amp; and it has done the job beautifully.It gives the bass a really nice full tone that impresses just about everyone who hears it. The distortion also works pretty well, and sounds good in appropriate songs. Though I'm unfamiliar with bass distortions in general, so can't really compare it to anything else. You also have plenty of options when it comes to the clean sound (EQ, "color" switch, on/off switch).All things considered, this is a very well built product at a great price. And it makes my keyboard amp sound like a pretty nice bass amp. If it were lost or stolen, I wouldn't hesitate to buy another.

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                well thought out

                By upIHg.OBE

                from Undisclosed

                See all my reviews

                Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

                I use this mainly as a DI boxExcellent bypassed sound with very, very low noise, no hum and no issues with headroomLots of features but I wish it had a couple of things1) a way to defeat the color switch when the distortion is engaged2) a different eq control for the distortion channelFor the price this thing is amazing. The switching is silent (a benefit of buffered bypass), the bypassed sound is great, the eq is executed well, the distortion control is quite large and the noise gate works well.I used to have the sansamp but the lack of a mid really bothered me. This unit took care of that. I no longer own the sansamp but I suspect the M80 can do everything it can do but it can give *great* clean sounds as well (the sansamp couldn't imho)

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                A must for any bass player

                By Anonymous

                from Undisclosed

                Comments about MXR M-80 Bass Direct Box with Distortion:

                This thing is hands down the best DI box out there. I spent at least an hour at my local music store trying to pick between the M-80 and the Sansamp. I ended up bying the M-80 and its worth every penny. The color switch makes even the cheepist bass sound amazing. You can get any level of distortion out of it simply by adjusting the Gain and Blend controls. The noise gate isn't perfect, but still very useful. I haven't used it to record yet, but on stage its a must. Its built like a tank and made to handle the most intense shows.

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