Bring me over to the dark side -- Tone "purist" seeking pedals

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by dirtyguitar, Jan 28, 2008.


  1. dirtyguitar

    dirtyguitar Member

    Messages:
    86
    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2004
    Location:
    Woodstock, IL
    Okay- I am a tone snob. I admit it though I'm slowly lightening up. For the last decade I have been soundly in the Sampson-style amp camp. C30s, on to Bad Cats. I have finally settled (at least for now;)) on a Tremcat. I also am enjoying the heck out of a 66 Pro Reverb with 1 Weber P12N and 1 Tone Tubby PAPER cone alnico.

    I want to start fooling with pedals. I have tried a variety of ODs over the years, but none (or any clean boost) left the tone pure, even in true bypass. I have played with botique Wahs, but none was cool (read SICK) enough.

    I'm lowering my standards for the sake of relieving boredom.

    What is the first pedal I should buy?

    I could go OD, FUZZ, DIST, or Chorus, Delay, Phase, wierd, strange --- whatever. What is the most compelling pedal you guys have come across? Something that justifies its presense every time you turn it on?

    fwiw - Guitars are PRS McCarty BRW Neck & Board with stock HBs, McCarty Korina wiht stock SBs, and Grosh Retro Classic with Fralins (alder).

    Any ideas????
    [​IMG]
     
  2. michael dukes

    michael dukes Member

    Messages:
    299
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2004
    Location:
    Nashville
    If a pedal leaves your tone pure, it isn't doing anything.

    I'd like to think of myself as a tone snob who happens to use pedals extensively. Guess my...uh...standards aren't quite as high as yours. I even tend to prefer boxes that exhibit loads of character.

    That said, maybe you need to go extreme, so there's no temptation to get into hair splitting comparisons with your usual tone. For me, that'd mean fuzz. I'm not going down the slippery slope of recommending one, there are threads ad nauseum on that topic.

    Another tack: some sort of ambiance. Personally, I'd suggest an analog or tape delay. The idea being to add something behind your basic tone instead of changing it.

    But if you're genuinely thrown by the changes you hear with an overdrive in bypass mode (and I'm not for a moment suggesting that you can't hear the difference), maybe you should try experimenting with different pick gauges/materials. Seriously. Or New Old Stock tubes. Change a speaker even. Based on what you're saying, any of those may prove to be a more rewarding pursuit.

    Have fun.
     
  3. Jason Lynn

    Jason Lynn Member

    Messages:
    616
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2002
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Your certainly open to a wide range of pedals for being a snob.

    Get a leslie or rotating cabinet. It's the only "effect" I could imagine that may meet your standards of leaving things pure.

    Second choice...get a tape echo.
     
  4. Jahn

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

    Messages:
    26,982
    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2007
    Location:
    NYC
    I have a pretty simple pedalboard now since my "main" tone is always direct, and the board is there just for pure flavorings. Therefore I tend to gravitate towards the wackier pedals that a straight signal just won't get you. For instance,

    1) Get a wah. Mine is a BYOC-type so you can true bypass it if you like, but when it's on you'll know! Wackawacka...

    2) Get a fuzz. Nastier the better. Fuzz Factory is the wackiest and that's what I have. I hope nothing onboard any amp i own will ever sound like it - if it does, my amp is probably broken!

    3) Get a delay. You have an amp with reverb and vibrato (actually tremolo) so delay is the next thing to get. Again, I have the Deluxe Memory Man because it's the wackiest out there. Mine is modded to have true bypass tho, again to get back to the "pure tone" if needed.
     
  5. dirtyguitar

    dirtyguitar Member

    Messages:
    86
    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2004
    Location:
    Woodstock, IL
    Okay - Maybe I should clarify... While I want to preserve my signal path as much as possible - I give up on the pursuit of perfection. I meant to say that I realized how rediculous I was being and now I'm setting the agenda of having fun (which is why I started playing in the first place)

    Can I call myself a "recovering tone snob"?

    Gear-wise thanks for your suggestions please keep them coming!

    So far I'm thinking a nasty fuzz and an analog delay or tape echo :dude
     
  6. Jahn

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

    Messages:
    26,982
    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2007
    Location:
    NYC
    The good news about a delay is that you can kinda simulate a chorus too, so if you end up using it that way mostly you can consider a dedicated chorus pedal which will have more flexibility. Right now I'm still happy with what the DMM can spit out to that effect, but just letting you know the possibilities.
     
  7. michael dukes

    michael dukes Member

    Messages:
    299
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2004
    Location:
    Nashville
    Okay, you sound as if you're serious about this pursuit. So I'll ask the two big questions that will impact any meaningful feedback you'll likely receive.

    1) What style(s) of music do you play?

    2) Are you jamming by yourself to undwind at the end of the day, or at this stage of the game do your needs reach beyond playing at home? I can't help but deduce from your posts so far that having your guitar part(s) sit in a mix gracefully, whether in a recording or a live band context, isn't necessarily your top priority.

    Please give us a bit of perspective here.
     
  8. dirtyguitar

    dirtyguitar Member

    Messages:
    86
    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2004
    Location:
    Woodstock, IL
    Thanks for the question; I left it out before for fear of over blabbering;)

    I've been doing blues and classic rock for the last decade or so. I'm initiating a new project which will be more modern folk/rock alt country influences (Bodeans, Wilco etc..) and also some classic stuff which will be guitar rock (pre and post shredder).

    I rehearse with a band in my home studio once a week - the room is VERY dead and my drummer tends to think he's Keith Moon occasionally. I'm nit sure if we're heading for the bar circuit or the corporate circuit till we get a little furhter along.

    I have absolutely no qualms about doing bad things to good songs as long as it serves a purpose.

    Aesthetically I want stuff that's fun to play with, Fucntionally I care a great deal about how I sit in the mix. Loud 4 piece drummer, guitar/player singer wiht a triple rec and me -- most of the lead stuff.

    This help?
     
  9. Bryan T

    Bryan T Guitar Owner Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    15,897
    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2002
    My pedals that are the most fun: Little Big Muff, Fuzz Factory, anything Moog (delay, ring mod, low pass filter). Particularly certain combinations, such as fuzz -> low pass filter -> delay.

    Don't overlook gadgets like an eBow for fun and musical sounds.

    Bryan
     
  10. Jahn

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

    Messages:
    26,982
    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2007
    Location:
    NYC
    Wilco? Seeing some of the crazy stuff that jazzmaster guy does in there makes me think that the Fuzz should be the first thing you should get! He's also into the haunted cavern echo type thing, so definitely look into that delay pedal too.
     
  11. Jason Lynn

    Jason Lynn Member

    Messages:
    616
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2002
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Fun stuff...
    Look into octave fuzzes.

    the fuzz factory or fuzz probe is awesome

    digitech whammy - tone sucker for sure but tons of fun

    delays of course and I wouldn't limit to analog or tape either. Tons of great digi delays out there.

    Get a looper...boomerang, DL4, Boss RC...again hours of fun here.

    A good univibe is hard to beat. Fulltone, Sweet Sound, etc....

    Best thing to do is just make a decision on a couple pedals and dive in! They're kind of like baseball cards once you get started :)
     
  12. otherone

    otherone Supporting Member

    Messages:
    1,119
    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2005
    Location:
    New York City
    I'd start out with 3 basic pedals, all which would maintain their transparency with your guitar and your amp. From my experience, I'd go with 1. Overdrive - Analogman King of Tone, Proanalog Dual Drive, Lovepedal Eternity, ZVex Box of Rock...all very good overdrives which will allow you to overdrive YOUR sound. 2. Delay - Just go with a Mad Professor Deep Blue Delay...you'll be glad you did. 3. Wah - Teese Picture wah or Proanalog SupaQuack.
     
  13. Lolaviola

    Lolaviola Supporting Member

    Messages:
    7,845
    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2005
    Location:
    Eastern Standard Time
    Treble Booster to change from "clean" to "not so clean" and preserve your dynamics.

    Fuzz & delay would be all good candidates for lead guitar. I'm not an "overdrive" guy. I like to let the amp do the overdriving.
     
  14. michael dukes

    michael dukes Member

    Messages:
    299
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2004
    Location:
    Nashville
    I agree.

    Know that in the world of fuzzes, there are some that offer 100 different tones just based on how you set your guitar's volume and tone knobs. If I were in your shoes, I'd want one of those. Sorry, don't have time to elaborate but many here can run with this.
     
  15. nibus

    nibus Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,968
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2007
    Location:
    Utah
    Try the Barber Tone Press - the compressor you can always leave on. I'm always amazed at the difference it makes in my sound as a whole. Won't kill your attack either.
     
  16. drbob1

    drbob1 Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    20,225
    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2004
    OK, how much of your money are we going to spend? If you're in it for fun sounds, you're going to have a whole range of stuff to look at, and only trying it out is going to tell you if you'll love or hate it. The basic foodgroups are obvious, but if I were building a pedal collection from scratch I'd look at:
    Boost-Zvex SHO
    Compressor-Analogman or Keeley
    Low Gain OD-TS808 or Klon
    Higher Gain-Hermida Zendrive, Mosferatu, Blackstone
    or a Zim for both.
    Fuzz-There's so many flavors you've gotta try em. I'm partial to Fuzzface clones.
    Chorus-CE2, Clone Clone or TCF
    Flanger-no idea, maybe the MXR?
    Phaser-Small Stone, Phase 90
    Delay-one digital and one analog, Echopark and DM9/AD9/Memory Lane etc
    Tape Delay if you can afford it and the space-TTE or new EP3 clone
    Then you start to get into the digital madness. If you REALLY want to screw with your sound ala Radiohead, and you don't want to spring for a lot of analog filters, then there're some multieffects units that allow routing so one effect modulates another: Eventide H3000 or higher, Adrenalinn, Lexicon MPX1.
    Another thing you might think about, the Axe-FX has an incredible scope (apparently) that would include good versions of everything mentioned above...
     
  17. wingwalker

    wingwalker Fuzzy Guitars Supporting Member

    Messages:
    6,797
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2007
    Location:
    Atlanta GA
    I try to use as little as posisble between my guitar and amp as I can however that sometimes is still several boxes...

    If you want a wah I can't suggest Teese highly enough, he currently has 7 flavors of wah, all of them unique and all of them good!

    ON the fuzz front there are more choices today then there has ever been...I feel like there are too many to be honest but thats me...for a "Nasty fuzz" i'd look into a Tonebender style unit or at least a silicon Fuzz Face...D*A*M seems to be the fav in the Tonebender department but they cost a fair bit, on the Fuzz face side IMO AnalogMan makes the best of both worlds...both his Silicon and Germanium Sunface pedals are amazing.

    For a delay it's hard to beat the tone of tape IMO but there are lots of good analog boxes out there too...Ibanez, Maxon, AnalogMan, the old Boss DM pedals, retro Sonic has one I think and let's not forget the old standby EH Deluxe Memory Man.

    Univibes seem to be very popular these days too and while I don't use them myself I like a good sounding vibe unit...if I were gonna use one I;d get either a Sweet Sound or the new FoxRox Aqua Vibe

    On top of all this if you want all out sonic madness look into the ZVEX line...some of the cooliest pedals I've ever had or use but you have to work hard to find a place to use most of them!
     

Share This Page