Explain Asymmetrical Lead Tones?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by mahler, Dec 20, 2009.

  1. mahler

    mahler Member

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    Keep hearing about the rockbox b.p. and its asymmetrical mode, what does that mean?

    A bit of a science/circuit/sound wave fool :D!
     
  2. coreybox

    coreybox Member

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    Last edited: Dec 20, 2009
  3. mahler

    mahler Member

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    Thanks, why didn't I try the mighty google?
     
  4. buddachile

    buddachile Member

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    Hey, you tried TGP and got your answer! No shame in that. Plus, you may have helped someone else in the process.
     
  5. coreybox

    coreybox Member

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    Yup, no shame
     
  6. GibsonSVG19

    GibsonSVG19 Member

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  7. JeffOlson

    JeffOlson Member

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    Yes, but is asymmetrical > or < symmetrical?
     
  8. The Whale

    The Whale Supporting Member

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    oddly enough, i just picked up an awesome distortion pedal and in the information sheet the builder refers to the symmetrical clipping stage on the pedal to be 'more amp-like' in tone and feel than the asymmetrical stage, which is referred to as more 'classic'. not sure what that means, but i've found that each tone has it's merit.
     
  9. this1smyne

    this1smyne Member

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    +1 to the whale, depending on your amp and whether or not its clipping as well... i find that sometimes in stacking pedals you need to be aware of the clipping types to avoid nasty farting sounds.
     
  10. jdel77

    jdel77 Silver Supporting Member

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    Symmetrical and assymetrical simply mean the configuration and set up of diodes in the clipping section of a circuit. A sound is expressed as a sine wave, with peaks and valleys. Cut the extreme ends of the peaks and valleys, and you will have a straight line where the curves were. That is clipping, producing distortion. Diodes are used to clip the signal in some overdrives, to give the characteristic distortion.

    Symmetrical means that there is a diode going either way in the signal, or both the peak (positive side of the signal) and valleys (negative side of the signal) are being clipped (1 diode on either 'side'). Assymetrical sounds like what it is, there will be an extra diode on one side, meaning that part or half of the signal will recieve extra clipping (2 on one side, one on the other, or 3 on one side, 2 on the other). Very assymetrical means like 3 vs 1.
    Assymetrical clipping usually produces more harmonic content, and the type of diode being used will give different sounds. The only difference between a RAT and a Turbo Rat is that the Turbo Rat uses LED's (LIght Emitting Diodes) to clip the signal as oppposed to the standard silicon 1n914's that the Rat (and nearly all Tubescreamers) use. Half the toggle switches on overdrive pedals are simply toggles to select different clipping options, and Mosfet overdrives can use Mosfets instead of diodes to clip the signal. The classic 3way clipping mod is to select between silicon diodes/no diodes (only the opamp clips, no diodes equals a big volume boost) / and LED's.

    http://www.diystompboxes.com/pedals/diodes.html
    http://www.muzique.com/lab/zenmos.htm
     

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