Boosting amps, but... - Page 2
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Thread: Boosting amps, but...

  1. #9


    Join Date: Sep 2010
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    I've had really good luck with a treble booster. Also, this sounds crazy, but a fuzz in front of the amp. No gain to very little gain. There is less EQ happening with most of those fuzz pedals, so it evens out the sound really well.

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  3. #10


    Join Date: Sep 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by Professor Squidbeard View Post
    sounds to me like you actually just want a small amount of transparent compression and not a boost at all. i'd test a compressor in front of the amp and in the effects loop.

    you could try both a compressor and a boost but from what i'm reading it sounds like you just want a (VERY SMALL) amount of compression.
    I was just about to suggest the same thing! I was actually about to try this myself, as I'm putting together a portable board to take to rehearsals, and want something as a solo boost in there. Believe it or not, I used to get good results doing this with a Behringer Dynacomp clone...
    "The greatest power one may possess -- in any situation -- is simply not to care what happens.

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  4. #11


    Join Date: Feb 2010
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    Seen this happen a load of times before to other players, you are going to go through a bunch of other boosts, including a 3 month period where you swear the Suhr Kokoboost is the greatest invention in history, before coming back to the OD808. Throw a Mesa Grid Slammer somewhere in the process. MXR OD obviously. Etc. etc.

    FWIW, I say either OD808 or no boost. I don't use a boost these days after religiously using one forever, but the OD808 just works.

    Also, IMO a lot of the OD808s negative qualities are really prominent when you use them with V30s because some of the V30s less positive qualities and some of the OD808s less positive qualities align and emphasize each other.

    If you are using an EQ (10 band presumably?) anyways, why not just try it in the loop (or even in front) cutting the mid frequencies both v30s and OD808s tend to emphasize.

    Also, FWIW, I'm also into replacing ODs with Exciters to juice or sizzle up a signal. Depends on guitar and the rest of the signal chain of course, but you can really add something extra with a judiciously excited signal.

    As far as Distortion -> Clean Channel on a good amp. Don't listen to what snobs say, that can sound as good as a native high gain channel. Easily. I say go for experimenting with that. Most people don't try it with nice amps and cabs and just equate the sound of a distortion box into a clean channel with cheap low end shit.

    It's not as popular in more Andy Sneap-y styles of metal, but I know loads of players with huge boards running their distortion sounds into clean channels. It's not as common as in hyper produced Melo-death, but in terms of other underground styles of metal in North America, loads of people don't use their amps gain channel for their gain sound.

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  6. #12


    Join Date: Sep 2012
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    You should give a mesa mark series a try, I think you'd get on with it. They don't really need boosts - in fact they sound less tight with an od808 in front.
    I DOEN A BAD MURDA.

  7. #13


    Join Date: Apr 2011
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    You're looking for a filter pedal. A tubescreamer cuts lows, boosts mids, gives a knob for high end response, and allows you to control the saturation of the amp with the gain boost.

    A filter pedal like the VFE Focus gives you a knob to control low end cut, high end cut, and a clean boost. Nolly was very clever in presenting that idea to that designer.

    Another pedal to check out is the Suhr KoKo Boost. That pedal fucking rips and lets you shape how wide the mid-range filter is with the "Mid Q" knob.

  8. #14


    Join Date: Oct 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by Professor Squidbeard View Post
    sounds to me like you actually just want a small amount of transparent compression and not a boost at all. i'd test a compressor in front of the amp and in the effects loop.

    you could try both a compressor and a boost but from what i'm reading it sounds like you just want a (VERY SMALL) amount of compression.
    Good call. I do have a Boss CS-3 I've literally never used. It's been on my board for about 3 years. It's not even plugged in...

    Quote Originally Posted by beneharris View Post
    I've had really good luck with a treble booster. Also, this sounds crazy, but a fuzz in front of the amp. No gain to very little gain. There is less EQ happening with most of those fuzz pedals, so it evens out the sound really well.
    I did build a fuzz pedal, but Mr S' bassist liked it so much he bought it off me But I do actually remember trying exactly this with fairly cool results...

    Quote Originally Posted by astrocreep View Post
    Not smooth as such, but I've enjoyed playing around with a rat type pedal with the gain really low into a moderately dirty amp. Definitely makes a change from the standard TS.
    This is exactly what Nuno did/does whenever he's using Marshalls. I am using the same pup as him after all, so this was definitely something I was going to try Mr S has one (two?) anyway so I'm good to go.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cobra Commander View Post
    You should give a mesa mark series a try, I think you'd get on with it. They don't really need boosts - in fact they sound less tight with an od808 in front.
    I mean ultimately I'll always try to get away with not using a boost first, so yeah an amp that just sounds great and has enough tightness and saturation inherently is key, but I just don't feel like the Mark series is my thing.

    It was the same with the Engl Savage. Fucking amazing head, no need for a boost to ever go anywhere near that thing, but that's also what I didn't like about it.

    I kind of prefer amps that you have to boost You get a tone that's great but just a tiny bit undergained, and then slam it so it's right on the money. I don't care what anybody says, that's a whole different dynamic to an amp that has it all on board.

    It's not just about the amount of gain either. Tons of amps have more than enough gain, but the shape/tone of the gain just isn't as nice as when it's rolled off to a "crunch" and then boosted.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg McCoy View Post
    Seen this happen a load of times before to other players, you are going to go through a bunch of other boosts, including a 3 month period where you swear the Suhr Kokoboost is the greatest invention in history, before coming back to the OD808. Throw a Mesa Grid Slammer somewhere in the process. MXR OD obviously. Etc. etc.
    Errr no, I'm probably the most pragmatic guitarist on this entire forum. I'll happily and publicly plug into a fucking potato if I thought the tone worked for me. There's about as much magic in pedals as there is in pickups. i.e. zero. They're pretty much ALL the OD808 circuit but with tweaks. In fact that whole "family" of boosts are pretty much interchangeable and honestly if you've tried one you've tried them all. In fact they're often referred to as a "mid-boost" rather than an "Overdrive" because they all do exactly the same thing.

    So this is what I'm trying to get away from, or at least experiment with getting away from - that whole family of boost pedals, not the Maxon specifically.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg McCoy View Post
    FWIW, I say either OD808 or no boost
    Yeah exactly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg McCoy View Post
    If you are using an EQ (10 band presumably?) anyways, why not just try it in the loop (or even in front) cutting the mid frequencies both v30s and OD808s tend to emphasize.
    No I was going to experiment using a typical 6 band stomp out front, acting as a clean boost, a la Dime. Putting it in the loop won't change the characteristics of the gain, it just alters the preamp's EQ.

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg McCoy View Post
    As far as Distortion -> Clean Channel on a good amp. Don't listen to what snobs say
    I can't possibly imagine why I would

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg McCoy View Post
    It's not as popular in more Andy Sneap-y styles of metal
    Well that's literally exactly what I'm trying to get away from. Not that I have that kind of tone anyway to be honest... But the gear in my arsenal has always been of that ilk, and I just want to get my tone another way, so it's just not as.... generic, I guess?
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  9. #15


    Join Date: Sep 2008
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    Grab a Rat, a big muff and a blues driver and see what you can cook up.

    I'm not sure a micro amp will be the ticket, but slamming the front of end of something cranked and mid gain with one is a ton of fun so try that too.
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  10. #16


    Join Date: Jan 2013
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    Get a Mark, no boost needed. Apart from when you do. I use a boost in front of mine for the saturation it gives. I think The Gathering was a Triple Rec with no boost?

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