Clearest / Girthiest Sounding Distortion Pedal?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by Electric I, Mar 4, 2006.


  1. Electric I

    Electric I Member

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    I play a lot of entended/polychords & need a distortion pedal that retains clarity under extended voicings.

    It'd be great if such a pedal could do the thick chunky root/fifth thing as well as single note lines.

    What should I be looking at?
     
  2. Cary Chilton

    Cary Chilton Senior Member

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    Stage Hog without a doubt, check out musict#$#.com for my thread and other owners' comments
     
  3. woude

    woude Member

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    try a keeley modded boss bd-2. Really nice for complex chords at lower drive settings!
     
  4. zadiqof

    zadiqof Member

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    If you play your amp loud and near breakup already, the Klon Centuar will give you a very clean and girthy sound. I rely on it because I also do precisely colored chord progressions etc, and don't want to deal with any pedal that's going to drown out any tone.
     
  5. Electric I

    Electric I Member

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    Good stuff.

    Thanks for the responses, everyone.
     
  6. jero

    jero Member

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    you might want to add the Fulltone OCD to your list. Superclear with plenty of gain.
     
  7. Mac-P

    Mac-P Member

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    ANY Barber pedal.

    That's David's whole deal. He originally designed the Tone Pump (and Burn Unit) so that he could hear the individual notes in chords even with distortion.

    I have to say, I have tried the Direct Drive, DDSS, Tone Pump, and Burn Unit (all have slightly different flavors). They all do that in spades. SUPER clarity & definition. I don't think you'll find much better personally. I'm sure one or two people here would agree.... :D
     
  8. Mac-P

    Mac-P Member

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    From the Barber Website: http://barberelectronics.com/




    The Burn Unit EQ http://barberelectronics.com/burnunit.html

    From the site: "Users can dial in explosive pick attack with total note definition which resolves chords as harmonically rich as 13ths and maj7's with absolute clarity! "

    I have the pedal and would say the Burn Unit EQ is the most "defined", 2 channel high gain pedal I have (and I have lots). It can do low gain great too, but it stays tight & clear even when piling on the distortion. Very rare. :AOK



    If you want a one channel box & only want low gain the LTD is the deal: http://barberelectronics.com/LTD.html

    If you want a one channel box & want low gain up to high gain the Direct Drive is famous: http://barberelectronics.com/directdrive.htm



    The single channel boxes are only $119 each :eek: with the absolute best components & construction. Even the best pedal makers here will tell you that. (open up one of the boxes & look around)....

    His stuff sounds amazing. I am surprised it doesn't get mentined more on here. :rolleyes:
     
  9. pacomc79

    pacomc79 Member

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    Stage Hog being a micro amp itself is phenominal. Stephenson is a Genius but then most of the people everyone here purchases from are masters. Between Stepenson and London Power, Ontario has it's share of brillant amplifier builders. It includes London Powers amazing power scaling which is nice when you want saturation at a lower level.

    I'd also say, Soldano Supercharger.

    and Barber Burn Unit. I think Barbers products are well suited for what you desire.

    http://www.stephensonamps.com/stagehog4-5.htm
     
  10. Cary Chilton

    Cary Chilton Senior Member

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    Pacom , Mark lives in western Canada, but knows Kevin O'connor from London Power ( the power scale inventor). The new Stage Hog ( line buffered and dual channel -when used as a peda- is really amazing. It isn't as bassy as his older model, though, but it will sound tight and focused in all amps now.
     
  11. funkycam

    funkycam Member

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    +1 on the ocd for overdriven chords w/ clarity.
    I much prefer a keeley ds-1 ultra for leads. The ds-1 can be a little too full @ higher gain settings for complex chords, but that's why I have both on my board :)
    (I use strats/ sf twin, like hendrix-ish tones)
    Cam
    Http://myspace.com/funkycam
     
  12. pacomc79

    pacomc79 Member

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    oh, for some reason I thought he was in Ontario too. It's a freaking awesome pedal, what tubes are you running in yours?
     
  13. Cary Chilton

    Cary Chilton Senior Member

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    Mark sent many tubes for me try for no extra charge, but I haven'nt even tried them yet. I just have the stock installed 5157, and I am quite happy with that! I may try a 12au7 for very low max gain in the future for a recording or two, but the 5751 is the ONE! I was NAILING so many tones last night, jamming out, that another 30 minute intentional session went till 5 am again. My girlfriend was pissed at me again, understandably, but I don't care because I love this TONE!!!
     
  14. Electric I

    Electric I Member

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    Well, checked out all the recommendations posted in this thread & took the plunge - bought a Barber Burn Unit EQ.

    I guess that's as good a place as any to start & even though I'm sure the BUEQ'll be most pleasing to the ear, I have a feeling this is just the beginning of a pedal collection. Especially of the od/dist variety.

    I thank you all immensely for your contribution to this thread & feel free to keep 'em comin' people.

    Cheers
     
  15. Mac-P

    Mac-P Member

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    You are right on both accounts! :BEER

    The BUEQ is a great pedal. :AOK
    For me it beat out: Fulldrive 2, two Custom Shop Fulldrive 2's, OCD, ProAnalog DualDrive, TIM, DDSS, Tone Pump, Menatone Howie, King Of The Britains, Tube King, and of course the ol' SD-1, TS-9, GT-2, ....I'm sure I'm forgetting some.... Have a Zendrive on order just to have another flavor....

    The internal trim pots alone put the BUEQ in a category by itself: you can get the flavor of a lot of the other pedals (less mids, more mids, brighter, darker - more compressed, less compressed). VERY very tweakable and versitile. Much more so than anything else I have tried. The tweaking can take a few practices and gigs to really nail, but once you get it right for YOU, you sort of have a custom pedal, designed by YOU. ;)

    And David Barber is the nicest guy in the world and will gladly give you tips on how the circuit works and the best way to get the sound you want. He helped me out a lot. Give him a call after you've tweaked a bit....

    But you are right, if you are a patron on this board you just entered the gateway. :eek:

    Well, it was nice knowing your former self. Say goodbye to all that you love and get used to beating the Fed Ex guy to the doorbell. :D

    Peace.
     
  16. jgyn

    jgyn Member

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    Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive, where one can reintruduce clean signal.
     
  17. Electric I

    Electric I Member

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    Mac-P: Have to admit, your hearty recommendation helped in making the leap of faith.
    Thank you, good sir. :BEER

    jgyn: You may have something there & I'm gonna look into it.

    Does anyone think the sparkle drive would get aong with the burn unit?
     
  18. Mac-P

    Mac-P Member

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    No problem bro.

    I have a Sparkle Drive too (forgot about that one). It is a great pedal, but all the shortcomings of the original TS-9 are there (bass loss, brittle at high tone settings). About two years ago the two OD's on my board were the Sparkle Drive into a Custom Shop cream Fulldrive 2. I got some great sounds out of both & together.

    The Sparkle Drive is a great pedal primarily because it does what no other pedal can do with the blend of the straight clean sound. Using a compressor before the SD is a good idea if you like sustain because although the dry sound adds definition and clarity, it is a dry sound. There is the same "dink dink dink" that there is if you were playing your guitar dry. Even though there is "another" overdriven and sustainy signal going on simultaneously, you do hear both (you can adjust the blend of course - but more clean = more "dink dink dink").

    A compressor can work wonders to blend with the SD, keep the sustain on the dry side, and allow the SD to do it's thing. A great pedal if put in context.

    To answer your question though, I have not tried the SD and BUEQ together. I toned down my board and am only using one OD now (the BU).

    .....I DO have an Eternity on the way though and there is about 4 inches of space left on there..... :D


    Good luck!
     
  19. Melodic Dreamer

    Melodic Dreamer Member

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  20. jazzgitter

    jazzgitter Member

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    I have an original Barber Burn Unit. One of the most massive sounding classic rock pedals I have ever heard with juicy harmonics. Just plain fat.
     

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