Noice Reducer, worth it?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by Mr.Chainsaw, Feb 2, 2012.

  1. Mr.Chainsaw

    Mr.Chainsaw Member

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    Hi!

    I'm a bit annoyed with a lot of background noise with my guitar rig and I am thinking of getting a BOSS NS-2 or something similar.

    I use a Vox AC15, so I do not have an effect loop, is the noise reduction still effective while just using it linear? And is it worth it at all?

    I use a Telecaster from 1982 so there's some natural background noise from the single coils, but also from my compressor pedal.

    Appreciate replies! Thanks!
     
  2. RyanFromQA

    RyanFromQA Member

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    What kind of power supply are you using? I had this Wampler Cranked AC clone that had this ticking noise and a lot of static in the signal, so much so that I rarely if ever used it. At the time, I was using a daisy chain with a Radioshack "Regulated" power supply. As soon as I got a BBE Supa Charger, I tried it with the Cranked AC, and it's one of the quietest pedals I've ever used. Here I thought all my noise problems were environmental or to do with my AC supply. So I dug out my ancient boss wall wart and it was a ton quieter than the Radioshack one.

    However I did have some environmental noise issues too. One huge one for me was turn off my computer. I have an iMac and it throws an incredible amount of noise onto my signal, even when its asleep. And it's not even plugged into the same circuit as my amp/pedalboard (let alone the same outlet!) I've noticed little difference with a CFL bulb on/off right behind my amp but my computer across the room with the screen off, that was a shock to me.

    Another big help was proper grounding. I DID have a problem of weak ground in my house's electrical system, so I got a copper clad 8-foot grounding rod and sunk right outside where my electrical box is, and ran a big fat piece of copper wire back into my electrical box. It just so happens that the outlet I use for my amp/pedalboard is only 3 feet away from where I sunk the rod, so I directly grounded that outlet, too.

    Lastly, I bought a couple filtering IEC plugs. From what I've read, the Hum-X that sells for upwards of $50 is a passive circuit that uses capacitors to filter out unwanted noise from your AC source. I found that Mouser sells the same kind of circuit integrated into an IEC receptacle, which is used for medical equipment. So I bought two of these, one for my amp, and one for my Pedalboard, which I made a custom power strip for.

    All these efforts have really quieted down my rig to the point that I would never consider a noise suppressor pedal, and even my well-grounded and shielded single-coil guitars don't have an annoying amount of noise.

    Now, except for the Supa Charger, I went as cheap as possible with all these fixes. The copper rod for my house only cost $12, but I had to work in my electrical panel which I wouldn't recommend for just anyone. The IEC plugs were only $10 apiece, but I have no issues modding my amp, it's a custom build anyway, as is my pedalboard. However, you could get a Hum-X for $50-70, and have your whole rig be filtered through it.
     
  3. David B

    David B Silver Supporting Member

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    Removing noise at the source is the best way to approach your issue. The compressor is most likely amplifying the noise from your pickups. Find the least offensive noise cancelling pickups, install them, live with them for a while, then ask yourself if you need to introduce a noise gate/reducer. Always consider the source first when it comes to tone or noise.
     
  4. UncleLarry

    UncleLarry Member

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    David offers good advice.

    That said, I had an NS-2 on my pedalboard for years and I liked it. I used to run all my effects into the front of the amp and everything was dead quiet with it on. The NS-2 has it's own effect loop (Send-Return) that you run all of your noisy effects through (distortion, comp, mod, etc.). Your guitar plugs into the Input and Output goes to effects such as reverb or delay (you don't want those to be gated), and then to the front of your amp. The output of your direct guitar signal is what triggers the gate on the effect loop, so you can set the threshold to be as sensitive as you like. The slope of the cutoff follows your guitar signal amplitude very well, so it almost sounds like you don't have a gate at all. Some have said that Boss pedal "suck tone" but I never had an issue with the NS-2.
     
  5. vanguard

    vanguard Member

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    you should definitely get one, but make sure you get a second one to suppress the noise the first one adds. . .
     
  6. djy8131

    djy8131 Member

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    I keep a isp decimator on my board but only turn it on if my rig is noisy that night
     
  7. The_Wretched

    The_Wretched Member

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    ^ did the ISP kill sustain?
     
  8. Heady Jam Fan

    Heady Jam Fan Member

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    The NS2 will suck as much tone as noise IMO. I have heard good things about the decimator and I have used the Rocktron Hush with decent results. I think noise can usually be kept at an acceptable level by using a good power supply and having good gear (ie, patches that don't let in noise, decent pups/shielded, avoid certain pedals...)
     
  9. Magicpad

    Magicpad Member

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    Apparently they are coming out with a Decimator 2 and a Decimator G-string 2 in April. I called ISP (as I am in the market for a noisegate with my Mesa) and they said that the new models will have better tracking and a quicker clamp time if you play very tight palm muted riffs.

    Hope this helps!
     
  10. djy8131

    djy8131 Member

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    Not for me. I never have to turn it up very high and I usually use a barber compressor too
     

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