Bland Clean Tone

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by eru, Jan 21, 2008.


  1. eru

    eru Member

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    What do you guys do with an amp that has an awesome crunch/rock tone and a clean tone that leaves a decent bit to be desired?

    Is there a pedal or preamp I can put in front of it that won't screw up my overdrive tone but that will give the cleans a bit more sparkly magic like a not-quite cranked ac15tb, or even a 2061x or similar?
     
  2. rickenbackerkid

    rickenbackerkid Member

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    Try a nice compressor. Keeley, Analogman, Barber. All excellent at giving your clean tone some finesse.
     
  3. gtrshow

    gtrshow Member

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    Keeley Java Boost with guitar volume rolled back a bit does it for me. Magic dust for clean tone. Not too shabby with the volume rolled up either.
     
  4. eru

    eru Member

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    I've thought about this already, as well as the Katana with the knob out for just a bit of grit. I tend to like the marshall/vox clean better anyway, so maybe it's something to do with the not actually completely clean thing.

    I was kinda planning on picking one up anyway, so maybe it's the time.


    I was hoping someone would suggest this. What good does a compressor do to a guitar tone? I know what they do, and I use them for other instruments in the "studio" (and by that, i mean drums and synths in my home studio), and I just can't imagine them doing anything positive for something as expressive as a guitar.

    Maybe I'll run my guitar into some kind of modeling software and see what a compressor does to it, but I can't find a tone I like that way anyway, so it might be worth checking something out...esp. since GC sells keeley stuff now.
     
  5. tmd187

    tmd187 Member

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    Dude, had the same problem with my Twin, the Keeley Katana Boost was all she needed to match those levels I needed. By far my most crucial pedal!!
     
  6. lifeinsong

    lifeinsong Member

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    Most likely some kind of clean boost would really help...Xotic RC, Keeley Katana, Fulltone Fat Boost etc. A compressor can be used in the same way as a normal clean booster, you'd be surprised how much a little compression can add to your tone.
     
  7. eru

    eru Member

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    Okay, so....I'm probably going to pull the trigger on this stuff by the end of the week. I'm not sure why, but I've got a major hard on for cleaner tones right now...

    So, any opinions on treble boost vs. full range boost (i.e. java vs. katana)?

    Any opinions on which compressor to try? I'd prefer if this be available at Guitar Center so I an return it. I finally realized that louder notes would still have more overtones due to the way the string vibrates, which is good...but I'm at bit skeptical still.

    Thanks, guys.
     
  8. TYY

    TYY Member

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    MCboost adds a bit of texture/hair/presence.

    Try a TBIAC.
     
  9. John Thigpen

    John Thigpen Member

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  10. rewog

    rewog Member

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    EP-PRE from ClinchFX is what you need...
    trust me. :D
     
  11. chrisr0712

    chrisr0712 Member

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    Also check out the Barber BarbEQ!!!
     
  12. teleblaster

    teleblaster Member

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    Whats it do? is it a clean boost?
     
  13. Guinness Lad

    Guinness Lad Silver Supporting Member

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    Sell the amp and start over. Hate to say it but it is reality. You can try tube substitutions but that only goes so far.
     
  14. JeffreyC

    JeffreyC Member

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    That's funny - that was my first thought as well, but that is coming from a guy that prefers to start with a great clean tone or just on the edge of breakup and add great pedals for all my OD, dist, fuzz tones. :D

    What amp are we talking about here anyway?
     
  15. eru

    eru Member

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    It's a cheap tube amp; I have no delusions that I'm going to use pedals to turn it into something amazing...I like the crunch tone, and I'm going for "good" clean, not "amazing." The problem with buying a new one is that there's not really one I can find between what I have and top-end dream amps that seems at the right price point. I could spend like $500-600 on an AC15 or Classic 30, but I kinda think that's just spending money that would be better put towards a 2061x (gorgeous cleans), an OD-50 Classic or a Panther R. I can't afford them now, and my skill doesn't warrant them now, but maybe it will by the time I can afford them.

    As for the od/fuzz comments, I tend not to like overdrive strictly from pedals, nor do I really like overdriving preamps with pedals. A few seem to have interesting characteristics, but I haven't heard anything that sounds the same as even an inexpensive tube amp run wide open. I'd almost rather have an amp-switching setup than just rely on pedals for OD sounds...

    The other "problem," is that I really like playing at night and playing even a 20W amp like that is just asking for complaints. I've seriously thought about getting into modeling stuff as well (Vox stands out in front, imo) since I might not need more than the modeler, maybe a compressor, and maybe one good distortion pedal... for about the cost of an AC15. I just have serious reservations about hearing a "recording" of a great amp vs. a mediocre amp being tweaked to sound good.

    Thoughts?
     
  16. 73171

    73171 Member

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  17. H_V_C

    H_V_C Member

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    Zvex SHO used at a lowerish setting should do nicely
     
  18. Guinness Lad

    Guinness Lad Silver Supporting Member

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    You could probably get a Fender blues deluxe used for $375 almost everyday of the week. These amps have real nice clean tones, I think the reverb and overdrive is weak but at least you will have a good platform to build from.

    The most imprtant element to nail in an amp is the clean tone, after that it's far easier. It's almost impossible to go the other way with great success. I had a $1650 ($2400 new) amp that I gave up on because the clean tone (for that price) was not as good or as loud as i needed it to be (when playing live). You can find a great base amp for $400, just do some research.

    If you still desire to keep your amp then I would suggest a speaker swap, the speaker pretty much either makes or breaks the tone. Not sure what your amp is lacking but if it's chime and harmonic complexity I would srongly urge you to try a Eminence Red Fang.
     
  19. Jahn

    Jahn Listens to Johnny Marr, plays like John Denver Gold Supporting Member

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    i had the same problem. i was spoiled with the princeton tweed's clean tone, so when i played a silverface princeton reverb, the clean was TOO clean, almost sterile. in the end no pedal really made that clean tone "organic" so off it went, and the brownface Concert that is here instead is a perfect clean tone complement to the tweed, nice and complex.
     

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