View Full Version : Do you ever run more than one distortion/OD pedal on at the same time?

03-24-2008, 05:26 PM
Now that my distortion and OD pedals are starting to accumulate I was wondering how others use multiple distortion / overdrive pedals.
Are you picking one at a time or are you mixing multiple pedals at the same time? If so, what do you use together?

03-24-2008, 05:35 PM
I like stacking low/mid-gain ODs, but anything high gain or compressed normally sounds terrible when combined with anything else. The boost side of the King of Tone into my LP Eternity can sound like a dream if they're set right, but sometimes stacking them makes the signal over-compressed and trebly...and a bit noisier :dude

03-24-2008, 05:39 PM
I stack my Keeley 808 and my Timmy. Sometimes I will boost my Landgraff Do with the Timmy as well.

03-24-2008, 05:43 PM
if you run one cleaner overdrive into a distortion/another od which is more distorted (set hotter) that can sound kool, it can sound better than an overdrive and a clean boost. I like having two ods and a clean boost which gives me alot of options.


03-24-2008, 06:03 PM
I like stacked sounds as well. It is an experiment for me.

Gary Brennan
03-24-2008, 06:13 PM
I have a Barber Small Fry (this run clean to simulate hums on a tele) into an OCD, into a Zendrive, into a Barber LTD, and will use them in various combinations.


03-24-2008, 06:15 PM
I'll often run my FDR-1 (a much maligned pedal on this board, but a very good one IMO) for rhythm and punch in either BD-2 or Bad Monkey (depending on which is on my board at the time) on top of it for smooth, higher gain solos on classic rock or blues songs.

For HIGH gain rock stuff, I use my Guv'nor 2 and have not had any luck stacking anything with it without inordinate amounts of noise. It has enough gain/punch on its own. I've tried many combinations, but that one seems to like to play alone.

03-24-2008, 06:27 PM
Stock RAT - Keeley RAT - GT500. All at low gain; lots of different colours to be had.

gang twanger
03-24-2008, 06:35 PM
Only recently have I started trying the stacking game, but I'm learning. At first it was because I was trying to find the right od texture for my Microvibe, but later on I was using one overdrive pedal to smooth out the inconsistencies of another.
Basically, as far as I'm concerned, if you want to stack od pedals, then it pays to start with an overdrive or od/booster that has a great (and flat/transparent) EQ. Then if you have another overdrive, distortion, or fuzz that lacks bass or treble, or needs presence or maybe a clean boost, you can run that into the one with the good EQ and fix whatever issues there might be. That's what I use my Throbak Overdrive Boost for, but it works magic all by itself if need be. To me, that is also a must for a stacker worthy pedal (it should still be quite usable on it's own). As far as I'm concerned, stacking should be used to make a good pedal sound better, not to make an unusable pedal usable.
The OCD can stack well too. But I'm usually trying to tailor it's EQ more to my taste. Still decent on it's own, though, especially if your amp is up nice and loud.

03-24-2008, 06:50 PM
my TIM is always on. I combo my Eternity into both the normal side and the Boost side with awesome results. the TIM has fantastic EQ controls, but I also have Barb EQ in TIMs effects loop. super flexible for many situations.

03-24-2008, 07:30 PM
My Boss OD2 is practically always on as a boost, and I use a Keeley MT2 as my main distortion. Then I use my Big Muff at almost minimum gain (after the OD2, before the Keeley) as a lead boost/"sludge-ifyer" (when appropriate), and an Indyguitarist Sputter Fuzz to really screw things up when I feel the need. I have a Pro Tone Body Rot II on the way to me right now. I've had a love/hate relationship with the Keeley MT2 forever, loving the liquidity of the distortion but hating the stupid amount of noise and the unusably spiky mid knob, so we'll have to see how the Body Rot fits into all of that and what it can replace. Ideally I'd like to be able to ditch both the Keeley and the Big Muff and let the Body Rot play a role that is somewhere in between, but I don't expect that to happen. I'll just do the shuffle and sell off whatever I don't like, I guess. :)

Sorry, I kinda went off there. Oh, and I also use an Ibanez AW7 (auto-wah with fuzz built in) quite often, and only occasionally these days an SB7 as well.

03-24-2008, 07:36 PM
Yes. Usually for leads I kick on my Keeley FuzzHead on top of whatever I'm using for rhythm on my regular board. Set right it is never too much and sounds very natural and retains dynamics.
Best Regards!

michael patrick
03-24-2008, 07:41 PM
Boosts, ODs, distortions, fuzzes, I'll turn them all on at once. I mean, why does a dog lick his privates???

Seriously, one of my fave stacks is a Fuzz Face into a Big Muff. Now that's a bodacious lead tone...

Joe Boy
03-24-2008, 07:47 PM
Of course. Doesn't everyone?

03-24-2008, 08:03 PM
Not a fan of stacking distortions. I feel one pedal has it's own unique flavor that's appealing to me; that's the reason I bought it in the first place. Stacking dirt sounds dirty (in a bad way) to me.

Now boosting/EQ'ing dirt or dirtying up some boost is a little different but most of the time, I'm only using one flavor of dirt.

03-24-2008, 08:45 PM
Boosts, ODs, distortions, fuzzes, I'll turn them all on at once. I mean, why does a dog lick his privates???

Dang, I thought I was the only one that did that...

Turning them all on at once, I mean... not licking my privates. :D

Rob Eadgbe
03-24-2008, 09:20 PM
I tend to run a low gain overdrive (Timmy, Zendrive, Sparkledrive, OD808, ect.) into a Dist/OD pedal set for medium gain (ie. BB Preamp, Keeley Rat, Crunchbox with the gain set low) to get the saturation I need for a smooth sustainy lead tone. I then boost the volume with an RC Booster.

03-24-2008, 09:22 PM
I don't really like stacking. I've done a lot of the suggested stacks on this board and never been happy with the sound. Of course I've never had BJF pedals to stack but I think I'll stick with one OD at a time. :)

michael patrick
03-25-2008, 04:06 AM
Dang, I thought I was the only one that did that...

Turning them all on at once, I mean... not licking my privates. :D

There's one particularly fuzz-laden song in our set where I run through all the dirt boxes on my board (one for each verse and chorus!). I usually have at least two on for the solo, and then for the big finish I turn them all on. My board looks like a Christmas tree with all the different colored LEDs lit up... :dude

03-25-2008, 04:59 AM
I've run a Timmy as my OD and RC Booster as a straight clean boost. Does that count?

03-25-2008, 05:08 AM
I've been running nearly all my dirt pedals through the Maven Peal Howler, it adds a bit of compression and helps control the dynamics, while giving lots of extra sustain.

03-25-2008, 07:56 AM
Come to think about it: that the Xotic plus series, are two units stacked into one. I have the AC Plus and I am always running it with both.
Now, to add that to my OCD, my Xotic BB, my Barber Direct Drive at the same time, that's not overdrive, that's overkill.

03-25-2008, 07:57 AM
Cascading gain stages and finding the ones that work together is half the fun. 15 years ago it was a DOD Bi-Fet preamp into TS-10 into Rat. These days, it's Timmy or Ulbrick 12AXE into White Eternity. The other combination that's really beautiful is Zendrive into White Eternity. The Zendrive just punches a bunch of sweet mids into the middle of the Eternity and makes for a very plush form of guitar carpet.

One of the best features of the Timmy is the two asymmetrical clipping settings on the internal DIP switches, so it can be tuned to work in conjunction with other pedals with the complimentary opposite asymmetrical clipping. The way that a pedal works with others is as important to me as the tone of the pedal itself. It has to fulfill both of those criteria in order to be a keeper. Three gain pedals gives a total of 8 possible gain structures, including all bypassed. I like having that sort of variety to choose from, especially when they're all good!


03-25-2008, 08:05 AM
I used to always use my Fulldrive 2 to boost the distortion of the next pedal in the chain for solos, usually a Barber Burn Unit or one of the Tonebone pedals.

But now that I 'm using a lower wattage amp, I tend to do just the opposite. I put the Fulldrive 2 at the end of the chain. I use the boost channel in uncompressed mode which boosts the volume for the solo and pushes the amp into slight overdrive.

I once had an SIB Varidrive (a tube overdrive pedal) that never really cut through the mix well unless I used it in conjunction with my Fulldrive 2. The Varidrive provided the warm, spongey feel, while the Fulldrive 2 gave the tone focus and clarity.

03-25-2008, 08:13 AM
I set up a new board and tried it for the first time last night. It's got a FDII Anniv., a Carb, and a Sex Drive on it. I was amazed at the number of combos I could get going on. The only thing I didn't like was the Sex Drive into Carb combo. The board also has a Option 5 DR Single, which sounds great with the OD on and being hit with the Carb. :dude

03-25-2008, 08:18 AM
Here are my stacking options:

Keeley Java Boost into Keeley 808 into Timmy into FDII mosfet into Landgraff DO into Landgraff Mo'D. I have be known to run three at a time during leads.

03-25-2008, 11:29 AM
Baby Blue- Little green wonder-Dyna red-Super hard on

BBOD stays on for 90 % of the time, then kicks in the LGW for fatten things up or DRD for more distortion, or both and SHO for solos.

It is great Im happy, just need another Boost, actually wants the SHO to stay on all the time!

03-25-2008, 11:40 AM
i was stacking 2 tube screamers for years, now im moving slightly away from that. currently im using the TS for lower gain stuff, into a BYOC rat i just put together. the rat has 6 different distortions, so its taking some time to dial it in. but i'm getting there, and digging it!

Mickey Shane
03-25-2008, 11:56 AM
I just started stacking, now that I have a Loop Master. How else can you turn them all on and off at once?

Dirt loop is Analogman juicer-> Marshall Bluesbreaker II-> modded TS9-> H&K 2 channel Tube Factor. Click off the TS9 for crunch rhythm. Switch the H&K to RED for punishing leads. Step on the Loop Master button = instant silence for endings.

03-25-2008, 02:08 PM
It's amazing just how many different distortion pedals exist.:crazy

03-25-2008, 04:07 PM
I use an Ulbrick 12AXE OD into a Tech 21 XXL at nil dist with the warp setting dimed. This creates a violin like sustain, yet maintains note definition extremely well. The warp function on the XXL offers that full tube saturation sound, letting each note bloom and sing. With a bit of a push from the 12AXE, the resulting effect is somewhat more pronounced and "alive".

03-25-2008, 04:46 PM
Lately, I've been using a FD2 (FM mode) into a BOR.

03-25-2008, 05:25 PM
I run a ts10 into a keeley sd-1 double stack 4558-does that mean I'm triple stacking?!

03-25-2008, 11:34 PM
back in the day I used to use a SD-1 and a USA Big Muff together switched on with the boss line selector.alot of gain

Erik Kay
03-30-2008, 07:28 AM
mi audio blues pro into a nobels odr-s!

blackjack davey
03-30-2008, 08:19 AM
Rat >> modd'd Muff. :AOK

03-30-2008, 10:27 AM
Never ever. To my ear stacking OD's usually sounds overly processed and demolishes the character of any guitar. I'm sure some combinations are better than others --- I haven't found one I liked. I do sometimes like an absolutely clean boost after an OD, but that's juicing the amp not the OD.