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View Full Version : "Earth-Tone" clean boost


rh
05-31-2008, 05:26 AM
http://www.thegearpage.net/board/showthread.php?t=387150

So, I ordered one and it came yesterday. Gave it about 10 minutes. First impression: :AOK

I've been on a clean boost rip lately, trying to find the right one to put at the very end of my pedalboard. I like a Centaur, with the gain set low, best in that position, but I don't want to give up the real estate. Plus, with immediate gratification for a Centaur running $450+, I figure there's gotta be a more cost-effective gadget that satisfies as much.

Now, I really like that slight bit of enhancement/coloration that a properly-adjusted Centaur, SCP w/Fat switch, original FatBoost, and now the Earth-Tone add. I've tried and fried a lot of clean boosts because they're too flat (and therefore effectively act as a treble boost).

For $105 and the smallest footprint I've seen, I may have a winner for my purposes.

derekd
05-31-2008, 09:12 AM
I got mine yesterday also. Looking forward to messing with it and seeing what it can do. Small footprint is right.

wgs1230
05-31-2008, 06:47 PM
The description sounds a whole lot like the old Alembic Stratoblaster circuit (of which I've built a couple of clones). Would be interested to know if/how it differs.

yeahyeahyeah
06-05-2008, 02:26 PM
The description sounds a whole lot like the old Alembic Stratoblaster circuit (of which I've built a couple of clones). Would be interested to know if/how it differs.


With a single transistor boost, you have stay within certain guidelines to keep the transistor happy, keep the sound clean (if thats what you want), and to get enough gain for it to make it all worthwhile.

That said, it has some functional similarities to the stratoblaster as far as circuit topography. There are a couple big changes though, and with small circuits like this any kind of change makes a big difference.

There is no capacitor bypassing the source resistor to ground, this reduces the ammount gain available but it keeps the sound clear and keeps the frequency response flat.

Biasing is totally different.

Rather than using the potentiometer to control gain, I set the gain at a fixed point and used a "normal" volume control at the end of the circuit. No crackle this way.

How does it differ in sound?
Stratoblaster is louder, but dirtier and darker.
Earthtone is not as loud but is clean and clear.

wgs1230
06-13-2008, 09:40 AM
Thanks Nick, good stuff.
Cheers to builders who aren't afraid of straight talk.

yeahyeahyeah
06-13-2008, 12:39 PM
:BEER I'll drink to that.

branbolio
06-14-2008, 04:41 AM
bump, for more input from users.

yeahyeahyeah
06-26-2008, 08:19 PM
bump, for more input from users.

I'd like to hear their thoughts too but there are not many of users yet, < 20 have been sold. It hasn't been around that long.

derekd
06-26-2008, 08:38 PM
I tried mine out tonight with the band for the first time. Didn't take long to dial it in (one knob, hehe). I am using it predirt per Nick. I need more time with it, but the word that jumps out at me is clarity.

I am using it not as a boost at this point, but on all the time for a tonal colorfication device.

monkmiles
05-09-2010, 08:27 AM
Would love to hear more input on this pedal...anyone else?

ToneFreak911
05-09-2010, 10:41 PM
Can't say how it compares to the KLON's clean boost, but. . . I'm currently in possession of the NOC3 tour box. Highly recommended, btw. Nick's Rock Candy OD is awesome in front of my OmegaHRDx clean channel.

Anyway, I'm on my own clean boost kick right now. Playing a LP through an Oldfield Marquis 30, I put the Earth Tone Boost up against an EP Booster, Burriss Boostier II, Keeley Katana, SHO, and Lizard Legs Flying Dragon. I felt the Burriss was the most compressed/least dynamic, which I hate, so I didn't spend much time with it. I'll give it another chance as it's supposedly the poor man's KLON. The Flying Dragon was the purest "my tone only more" boost (set to unity I could barely tell when it was on or off). The rest ad their own color. Most of you are probably familiar with the SHO "sparkle". The Katana is just great. Not as pure, but oozes testosterone. The EP, even with the bass boost off, has a thick low/mid hump.

CONCLUSION: The ETB was probably the second most pure boost in this group next to the Flying Dragon. For all the EP vs. SHO debates and polls, the ETB sits quite nicely between the two. Slight mid hump, but it's just right. Not as "sparkly" as the SHO, but that's a good thing in my opinion. Nick's ETB definitely holds its own and was probably the best "all purpose" boost in this group. Hard to argue the SIZE and VALUE! Hope that helps.

Also, I don't have recording equipment, so I can't post evidence of the shootout. Sorry.

yeahyeahyeah
05-10-2010, 06:18 PM
Thanks for the review tonefreak911! I happen know Paul Gussler, the man behind Oldfield amps. He's also here in Charlotte and a super nice guy building bombproof stuff, we've talked quite a bit at his shop when I built a few ABY boxes for him.

You seem to get what the EarthTone is all about. Transparency and clarity with an ultra subtle color shift.

monkmiles
05-19-2010, 05:57 AM
Can't say how it compares to the KLON's clean boost, but. . . I'm currently in possession of the NOC3 tour box. Highly recommended, btw. Nick's Rock Candy OD is awesome in front of my OmegaHRDx clean channel.

Anyway, I'm on my own clean boost kick right now. Playing a LP through an Oldfield Marquis 30, I put the Earth Tone Boost up against an EP Booster, Burriss Boostier II, Keeley Katana, SHO, and Lizard Legs Flying Dragon. I felt the Burriss was the most compressed/least dynamic, which I hate, so I didn't spend much time with it. I'll give it another chance as it's supposedly the poor man's KLON. The Flying Dragon was the purest "my tone only more" boost (set to unity I could barely tell when it was on or off). The rest ad their own color. Most of you are probably familiar with the SHO "sparkle". The Katana is just great. Not as pure, but oozes testosterone. The EP, even with the bass boost off, has a thick low/mid hump.

CONCLUSION: The ETB was probably the second most pure boost in this group next to the Flying Dragon. For all the EP vs. SHO debates and polls, the ETB sits quite nicely between the two. Slight mid hump, but it's just right. Not as "sparkly" as the SHO, but that's a good thing in my opinion. Nick's ETB definitely holds its own and was probably the best "all purpose" boost in this group. Hard to argue the SIZE and VALUE! Hope that helps.

Also, I don't have recording equipment, so I can't post evidence of the shootout. Sorry.

Thanks for that review. I'm considering an EP Booster, Earthtone or SHO. I think I want something with a little color, namely warm fattening. Of these 3, which do you think fit that the closest?

DeaconBlues
05-19-2010, 06:40 AM
Sounds like an interesting pedal. I use a Lizard Legs Flying Dragon, but I prefer a boost without any added color. I add color with an OD. In my case that can vary from day to day.:crazy

ToneFreak911
05-19-2010, 11:18 AM
Thanks for that review. I'm considering an EP Booster, Earthtone or SHO. I think I want something with a little color, namely warm fattening. Of these 3, which do you think fit that the closest?

The EP for sure.

monkmiles
05-19-2010, 06:26 PM
The EP for sure.

Thanks man.

Ugh, I'm back and forth between what type of clean boost I want. It's between the Earthtone and the EP Booster. One day I think I want a good amount of tone coloring (like the EP is supposed to do) and the next I feel like I want fairly transparent (like I think the Earthtone would do) since I'd be using it in my jazz playing alot. I really like what the original poster said about the Earthtone: slight bit of enhancement/coloration
Decisions, Decisions, Decisions... :)

rhoydotp
12-23-2010, 06:59 AM
thread revival :)

i bought an EP-Booster beginning of the year 'coz I needed a small footprint boost pedal. It sounded so good that I ended up leaving it on all the time ... now I have a NOC3 Earth Tone on the way to fulfill my boosting needs :aok

Brooks
06-10-2013, 10:15 AM
i'm considering letting my NOC3 Earth Tone go in search of a boost w/ more mid gain coloring, to use in the loop of my mini recto in order to get more of a hard rawk drive out of the green channel. open to trades or a sale, PM me if interested.