Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

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Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by The Chad on Fri Aug 19, 2011 4:16 pm

Alright kids, what's your favorite means of distortion and what style do you use it for (your favorite distortion or overdrive pedal, maybe a particular amp you like on its distortion settings, and do you use it for gritty blues, rock, hard rock, metal, whatever)?

I'm shopping for a new pedal, or even a new amp if the Wifey may be manipulated in such ways, and I'm getting "consumer paralysis" due to too many choices out there! So let's weigh in on this. Love to hear what everyone's using. Very Happy


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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by TVill25 on Fri Aug 19, 2011 4:46 pm

Just got a Carvin 3vmc amp... It's F-ing Awesome. Check into it.

http://www.carvinguitars.com/guitaramps/v3microseries.php


As far as pedals I am leaning towards a digitech rp1000.

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by anaerobe on Sat Aug 20, 2011 5:49 pm

This is a broad topic. During the past year I have messed around with a number of distortion pedals. There are three different sub groups of pedals within this huge group - at least let me break it down to these: i) line boost, ii) basic overdrive and iii) full-on fuzz.

Each subgroup has some real beauties... my favourites in each category: first category - BK Butler Tube Driver (Fulltone makes a good one too but the name escapes me), middle category - Radial Trimode, and finally, for Fuzz - the Big Muff triangle clone (BYOC - Build your own clones). That said, everyone and their dog seems to like the TS9 or the TS-808 Tubescreamer (Ibanez (Maxon?)) reissue. Those apply to the second category I guess.

Actually my second hand Radial Trimode can really do it all. Within any mode you can roll off volume and have a multitude of middle tones. My favourite pedal by a mile. Radial has three great pedals... Trimode, British, and Plexi. Any of these are fantastic in my opinion. YMMV.

AMPS: In the last year my experience with amps has broadened. My favourite amps are old Garnet (any tube amp designed Gar Gilles is pretty good IMHO - He used to make these, as well as house brands for Simpson-Sears (US) and Eatons in Canada. THere are also about 30 stencil clone brands of Garnet amps floating around, all made in Canada. All are pretty good as long as they are not solid state. (There may be a Matsumoku connection here: "Garnet" guitars, certainly "Mann"). My second favourite amp is anything from Univox (B series). THese amps were common in the late 60's very early 70's, designed in the US (Unicord) and MIJ. I have a Univox tube bass amp that I use for guitar through a home-made 2 x 12 (Eminence Man o War speakers) cab based on an old Orange closed back design.

Original Sunn Model T are FANTASTIC amps, and I think the Fender-reissued Sunn iterations are pretty good too. The former are kind of like hen's teeth, but if you can find one...get it.

Of the currently made stuff there are many boutique beauts... but if it were up to me I would look at Mesa, higher end Vox and Traynor and finally Dr. Z and Roland are hard to beat. THere are many more, but I know these brands are reliable and sound great (to me). Peavey makes a few good amps too...I like the classic 50. Careful, some cheaper Peaveys are not too wonderful. My C50 will have some Weber speakers before long. Weber makes some killer amp kits, and he will build them for you too.

Sorry for the length of this. I think amps are a hightly subjective topic, but a very interesting one.


Last edited by anaerobe on Sat Aug 20, 2011 10:11 pm; edited 2 times in total

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by Iceman on Sat Aug 20, 2011 6:16 pm

For a Carvin this wasn't too bad of a deal, and it sounds pretty good too.....



Otherwise we do like the MusicMan pair we have around here. My beloved is a fairly strict clean channel only type and favors the older MIJ Boss pedals..... about as much as her older MIJ gee - tahrs.

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by anaerobe on Sat Aug 20, 2011 6:20 pm

A bit more on AMPS: I forgot to add, if you are a do-it-yourselfer there is always an option to build a kit.

While I have not built one yet, I have done some research and would suggest that kits from Ceriatone are good. I'd like to get an 18 watt kit myself.

They are based in Asia, and have dealers around the world.

www.ceriatone.com


Last edited by anaerobe on Sat Aug 20, 2011 10:13 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by anaerobe on Sat Aug 20, 2011 6:23 pm

Ice... that is way cool

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Re:distortion pedals and amps

Post by IanO on Sat Aug 20, 2011 6:28 pm

I'm pretty boring in this department and have always felt that a good amp overdrive can't be beaten. Although there is probably something out there to change my mind. I use the overdrive on my amp- an Acoustic Control Corp G100T. This is a 2 channel 100/50w all tube amp very similar to a Boogie MkI or II (A bit too similar according to the courts) from the 70's I believe, it has a footswitchable EQ that can act as a boost- IMHO this amp sounds great. I have the channel gain at 3/4 and guitar volume down to clean it up to a bluesy tone. If I'm feeling frisky then I turn up the guitar volume and have a Danelectro Daddy-O to give a little extra push to the front end. this really accentuates the attack of my tone giving it a sort out squelch as the string is picked. Bloody hell its hard to describe a sound! Apart from that, i've never really liked loads of FX but do have an old Boss SE50 for delays and deeper reverbs (and occasionally chorus)

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by caucajun on Sat Aug 20, 2011 9:52 pm

SOOOOOO subjective..... there are so many choices because they're all potentially good ones..........the ibanez ts-9 and boss sd-1 and ds-1 are the most popular............and most other pedals seem to be a "version" of one of those.


that's where i'd start.

guud luck!

C!

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by The Chad on Mon Aug 22, 2011 11:58 am

Anyone on here mod their Boss DS-1? Sounds pretty good once modded, I'm considering having a crack at mine. Sounds way too thin stock, couldn't hurt much I suppose, right? Laughing

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by anaerobe on Mon Aug 22, 2011 12:44 pm

How would you mod it?

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by Iceman on Mon Aug 22, 2011 12:59 pm

Keeley kit I suppose... if one exists for a DS-1. I heard a Keely modified Blues Driver recently side by side with an un-modified one and the difference was pretty impressive.

When I do fool around with these I still go back to the first one I ever bought which is an OD-1. Early MIJ model and a very basic, yet warm overdriven signal.

I did buy one of those Rockmans that Tom Schotz put his name one back in the 80's as well. It is a very neat little unit and allows for lots of distortion and grinding without ticking off anyone nearby as you can plug headphones into it. Anyone else heard of it or used one??

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by The Chad on Mon Aug 22, 2011 1:00 pm

Here's some links for you, you'll have to copy and paste...

http://www.tdpri.com/forum/stomp-box/122734-boss-ds-1-mods.html

http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?board=2.0

http://www.bossarea.com/forum/forum.asp?FORUM_ID=10

You can Youtube it too. Sounds a lot better modded. Adds mids and a fuller sound.



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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by anaerobe on Mon Aug 22, 2011 2:22 pm

Very nice... I could see myself try this.

THanks!!


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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by anaerobe on Mon Aug 22, 2011 2:24 pm

Ice...Rockman seems to be very good stuff. I don't have anything made by them, so that's an unqualified opinion.

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by boutjp97 on Mon Aug 22, 2011 2:36 pm

I use a Hughes & Kettner 20th anniversary with a Marshall 1960 4x12 celestion cabinet coupled with a custom (made by me) pedal board. I buy boutique pedal kits off of sites like build your own clone but I further customize them by bread boarding. I use this rig up for everything from Jazz, blues, rock, top 40. For Heavy Metal I use the same Marshall 1960 cab with a Bugera British Bite 1960 plexi head with the tubes switched out and either a Boss GT-10 or a Digitech RP-500 processor. For recording I have also used an old digitech GSP 21 pro legend processor and a Crate G600 head and a Zoom.

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by The Chad on Mon Aug 22, 2011 2:50 pm

Hey boutjp... you got all three Dim IV's?! .... it's so moving to see them all in the same place... Sad it's... just so beautiful... Crying or Very sad


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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by caucajun on Fri Aug 26, 2011 9:45 pm

The Chad wrote:Anyone on here mod their Boss DS-1? Sounds pretty good once modded, I'm considering having a crack at mine. Sounds way too thin stock, couldn't hurt much I suppose, right? Laughing

I'VE HAD 2 MODDED DS-1'S . a diy keely type and a monte allums. both were really useable effects........and then :idea: ......i got fresh ears and heard things from the original that i never heard before :!:

yes, it's thin, unless you back off the treble..........i like the thin sound it does..... :alien: ......especially when all me other mates are "bass privates to tha woll!" it stands out from th din.


i think i'm over it(modding). although, the sd-1 w/ the keely 5 star mod is really nice.

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by boutjp97 on Sat Aug 27, 2011 6:50 am

The Chad wrote:Hey boutjp... you got all three Dim IV's?! .... it's so moving to see them all in the same place... Sad it's... just so beautiful... Crying or Very sad


LOL, yes I agree that it is rather moving. I only play the red one though and I have no idea why.

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

Post by hobster on Sat Aug 27, 2011 1:05 pm

Iceman wrote:

I did buy one of those Rockmans that Tom Schotz put his name one back in the 80's as well. It is a very neat little unit and allows for lots of distortion and grinding without ticking off anyone nearby as you can plug headphones into it. Anyone else heard of it or used one??

Ah, yes, the good ol Rockman. I still have mine from the 80's as well, and it works great after much use. I used to walk around the house with that baby pluged in for hours at a time. I think mine is the Rockman Soloist - great clean and distorted sounds. Tom Scholtz is one smart dude, MIT graduate and not too shabby of a guitar player either. Very Happy Always loved his melodic solos in Boston, and the harmonies he overdubbed.
As for gear, i like my little Fender Blues jr. amp which sounds great and has enough volume to mic on stage. Gotta have them tubes! I've used lots of distortion pedals and stick to my Ibanez tube screamer. I kinda like clean tones these days. My favorite metal distortion pedal is still my 80's Ibanez Sonic distortion, nothing new comes close in my opinion.

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Re: Distortion pedals and amps... your opinions?

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