...What I don't understand is when I have the first in the chain that it clips so easily....
I'm still betting on the Input level being the cause.
Is that little LED turning Red at all?
From the manual:
Signal Level LED
This dual-color LED monitors the signal strength of the unprocessed inputs, and is
used in much the same way as the level meters on a standard tape recorder. When
the LED turns red, the input signal will be distorted so the [INPUT] level should be
backed off. If the green [SIGNAL] LED is barely coming on, the input signal is not
high enough and the resulting sound from the NanoVerb may be noisy. Ideally, the
[INPUT] signal level should be set so that the [SIGNAL] LED is solid green when
audio is being played into it.