did i need the t1m buffer?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by airbags, Jan 25, 2012.

  1. airbags

    airbags Member

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    bear in mind that i'm still trying to suss out buffers, boosters, drivers, et al...

    i recently had the pleasure of plugging a lehle sunday driver between my guitar and my pedalboard. my signal was driven to the point that it sounded as if i were plugging straight into the amp without any tone suck. awesome.

    somewhere along the way, it was suggested to me to purchase a t1m buffer, so i ordered one from dan (EXCELLENT customer service, by the way!) and it was delivered today. unfortunately, no matter where i place it on my board, i'm not achieving the same effect as if i were using the sunday driver... not that i expected the SAME effect, but something similar.

    i did find this nugget of information: "As soon as you have a single Boss or other buffered pedal in the chain, the effect of the additional buffer is negated."

    here's my board - (b) buffered, (tb) true bypass:
    boss tu2 (b) ->
    rocktron triwah (b)
    dod big pig (b)
    boss pw2 (b)
    boss ce5 (b)
    toadworks texas flood (tb)
    boss hf3 (b)
    wampler slostortion (tb)
    gigfx pro chop (tb)
    boss ls2 (b)
    digitech whammy iv (b)
    hardwire dl8 (tb)
    joyo ultimate octave (tb)
    recovery sound destruction device (tb)
    morley pvo+ volume (n/a)
    hardwire sc2 (tb)
    boss dd5 (b)
    boss rv5 (b)
    -> amp.

    at some point, i intend to have my whammy modded for true bypass by molten voltage, and i want to order an area 51 wah, which is also true bypass. i'm wondering if i should hold onto the buffer, you know, just in case.

    thoughts?
     
  2. airbags

    airbags Member

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    also, i've placed the buffer before the chain, after the chain, after the tu2, after the wah, before the slostortion, after the ls2, after the whammy, before the volume pedal, and after the volume pedal.
     
  3. PerFusionist

    PerFusionist Supporting Member

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    Sounds like you've answered your own question...if you don't hear a difference then you probably don't need it. You've got lots of pedals that are already buffered. Also, if you have any "always on" pedals, the benefit of a buffer is also negated (or at least greatly reduced).
     
  4. guitarslinger21

    guitarslinger21 Member

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    Sixtonoize is a good guy, but just because he said it, doesn't mean it's the truth.

    Use your ears.

    I can hear a difference with or without the T1m buffer, and yes, I do have Boss pedals in my chain.
     
  5. jkokura

    jkokura Member

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    You've misunderstood the meaning and purpose of a buffer.

    A buffer is designed to take your high impedance signal from your guitar and transform it into a low impedance signal. A low impedance signal travels with less difficulty. This means that if you use a lot of pedals and cords that you will have 'more of your tone' when it hits your amp. That's what buffers do.

    If you ran 40 feet of cable to your amp from your guitar, you would likely have percieved tone loss. Run 10 feet of cable and you'll be able to clearly hear the difference. So, in a setup in which all your pedals are true bypass and you've got 10 feet of cable to the board, ten feet of jumpers on the board, and 20 feet to your amp, It's the same as having a 40 foot cord. Now, put a buffer at the front and it will be like the 10 foot cord to your amp because you'll have 10 feet from your guitar to your buffer, and then a low impedance signal to the amp.

    Truth is, you have an awful lot of buffers, and the T1M one is absolutely superfluous. However, the Sunday driver is more than a simple buffer. It has additional circuitry which is likely what it is you're hearing that 'sweetens' the tone.

    Quite frankly, unless you're running a completely true bypass setup, Buffer pedals are almost useless.
     
  6. racecar

    racecar Supporting Member

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    I recently installed a T1m buffer and have had mixed results, but I was expecting that.

    When I run straight through my board, the clarity due to the T1M buffer is very evident. When I play with only my empress compressor on as well as my reverb unit (TC HOF) , it still has a noticeable difference. Where it gets less black and white and when I have multiple effects on at the same time. If I am running my delay and possibly my envelope filter in addition to a couple of other effects, the difference is barely noticeable, if at all.

    Mileage varies, but if you are using all TBP pedals (I am) , I think it is an inexpensive solution to add it to your board. I went with the TB version of the buffer, so I can turn it on and off and do an A/B test.

    Buffers are not rocket science, rather quite the opposite. As stated previously by another poster, it simply takes the high impedance signal and converts it to low impedance , allowing the signal to travel through the entire chain with more efficiency.
     
  7. airbags

    airbags Member

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    at this point, i'm wondering if it's worth keeping, and what other applications it might have.

    of course, who knows what my board will look like in a few months/years, so it might come in handy then.
     
  8. analogmike

    analogmike Gold Supporting Member

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    You don't need a buffer, you need some loop boxes or a switching system to get a bunch of those buffered pedals out of your signal path when not being used.
     
  9. airbags

    airbags Member

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    with supplemental reading, would a boost pedal be what i'm missing? the sunday driver is great, but quite expensive, so i'm thinking the ego booster from a local builder, smart people factory would be what i'd need to strengthen my signal.
     
  10. Leftyman

    Leftyman Silver Supporting Member

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    I agree with this completely. You have so many buffered pedals in your chain I am guessing your tone is going to be far from plugging straight in. Remember, not all buffers are created equal. There are good buffers and not so good buffers for lack of a better term. You might also want to consider cleaning up your board. Whenever I see chains like this I wonder, do you really need 20+ pedals? If you do, get a multiple channel looper.
     
  11. airbags

    airbags Member

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    yes :)
     
  12. TenneyThe2nd

    TenneyThe2nd Member

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    Try running the buffer first, then add each pedal to your chain one at a time, listening to the tonal changes. You might find one that has more of an affect than you'd like.

    As a rule, I prefer TU-2s after other buffers. They drive a strong signal fine, but they don't do well with a really high impedance signal. In other words, they need to be after another better buffer.
     
  13. airbags

    airbags Member

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    besides, i'm only running 18. :sarcasm
     
  14. analogmike

    analogmike Gold Supporting Member

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    love you, man!!!
     
  15. rayza

    rayza Member

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    maybe an mxr/cae 401 line driver could be a cheaper option?

    edit: cheaper than a lehle, not a t1m.
     
  16. jb4674

    jb4674 Member

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    If you had the sunday driver and you were happy, why would you listen to other people and go out and replace the sunday driver with a $50 buffer?
     
  17. airbags

    airbags Member

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    awww :)

    it's funny - attempting to explain shoegaze/quasi-shoegaze and use of many pedals to guys who aren't into that sort of thing... heh, it's always an odd and fun conversation.

    different kinds of music for different kinds of players... love it!



    i did look at that, but in my searches, i also came across the discontinued and now super-rare "nitrous boost" by machine head pedals, as well as the aforementioned "ego booster". it's worth checking out, that's for sure.



    the sunday driver was a loaner, and at $230, i was willing to explore different options (that, and the guy who owned it... well, i don't want to do business with him). making a $45 investment on the t1m was worth knowing that it doesn't work, and i may end up keeping it, anyway, because it may be useful moving forward.

    besides, if i outright owned the sunday driver, we wouldn't be having this conversation, and i wouldn't be learning even more! :)
     

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