Overdrives without diode clipping?

KBN

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1,087
So the only drive pedals I am getting along with now are a Zvex Distortron and Subdecay Liquid Sunshine. They have made my diode clipping overdrives seem obsolete. I am not looking for an argument about diode clipping. I am just looking for recommendations of overdrives with cascaded gain stages and no diode clipping stages. Please indulge me. Thanks.
 

Agreed

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1,647
Are mixtures of op-amps and diodes, or jfets and diodes, tubes wired to clip like diodes, diodes used just to bring the output level up after a clipping and compression stage okay? Frankly I don't understand your approach at all because it's not the diodes that make something sound like it does or doesn't, but you don't want a discussion on it so out of respect for your wishes I'll not press the issue, just seeking some clarification on how "no diodes" you mean to go here.
 

KBN

Member
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1,087
Are mixtures of op-amps and diodes, or jfets and diodes, tubes wired to clip like diodes, diodes used just to bring the output level up after a clipping and compression stage okay? Frankly I don't understand your approach at all because it's not the diodes that make something sound like it does or doesn't, but you don't want a discussion on it so out of respect for your wishes I'll not press the issue, just seeking some clarification on how "no diodes" you mean to go here.
If a tube is wired to clip like a diode, consider it a diode. If a transistor is wired as a diode, consider it a diode. Lately my experience does not agree with your assertion that diodes don't make something sound a certain way. The overdrives that I don't like lately all use diode clipping, both hard clipping and soft clipping. I have swapped lots of different kinds of diodes in pedals and although it changed the sound they still didn't do it for me. The pedals that I am liking don't use diode clipping. I would like to explore that. So that is my approach and I don't care if anyone thinks that is unreasonable. Not looking for anyone's opinion of the overdrives either. My goal is simply to have a list of overdrive pedals that don't use diodes for the clipping.
 

JimmyR

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The Menatone "amp in a box" pedals are mostly diode free. I believe the Fettos are diode free also.
 

solitaire

Senior Member
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3,718
Has to do with the post clipping recovery of the diodes that the OP dislikes. As with Op-Amps to my knowledge some do this better and some don't.

I'm thinking Way Huge Porkloin, MI Tubezone and Crunchbox, Fulltone Catalyst - although it's kind of fuzzy - and Plimsoul. Can't say whether these are absolutely diode free and what kind of diodes they use if they do. They're multi stage however.

I've found that Germanium and FET circuitry often sound less SS than the more common semiconductors; more valvy and have good recovery usually. Am I onto something here or completely off the mark?

Getting to think about it: Most of the multi stage pedals utilise "different types of clipping", with the intention of creating plentyfold of overtones. To avoid any stage that you don't like your best bet would be stacking separate pedals, which gives you more control on the breakup textures.
 

Whalestone

Member
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1,018
I'll allow it. ;) Thanks for all the suggestions. Keep them coming.
Ah, then tubescreamer variants featuring a no diodes mode selectable through a clipping mode switch fit the description. Landgraff Dynamic OD comes to mind.
Analogman KOT is another overdrive with the possibility to select no diodes.
 

solitaire

Senior Member
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3,718
Those utilize diode clipping.
Like I expected, then. Not sure which stage of the four in the TZ that utilizes diodes though. The hard sizzle seems to occur at really high gain settings.
The Blackstone Appliances Mosfet Overdrive fits the criteria.
Then I'm sure it's one of a very few that do.

Non-diode multi-stage being the parameters to move within, there's no saying the ones that do fit that bill automatically are tonal marvels in any and all respects.

I take it the OP wanted to throw in a feeler if this was a viable way to go or whether to resort to stacking.
 

BrianWampler

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1,326
Diode clipping isn't necessarily the culprit. It may contribute burials solely why. With thatsaid there are tons of pedals on the market that use various of methods of clipping without diodes. You may want to try a mu-amp based of/distortion as well as a number of different fet style circuits.
 

KBN

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1,087
Non-diode multi-stage being the parameters to move within, there's no saying the ones that do fit that bill automatically are tonal marvels in any and all respects.

I take it the OP wanted to throw in a feeler if this was a viable way to go or whether to resort to stacking.
Exactly. I am not against diode clipping per se. Lots of people use such pedals and I think they sound great and I have had some that I thought sounded really good for a while, but liking them has only lasted so long. The only commonality between the overdrives that I have really connected with lately and the ones that I have fought with over the last few years seems to be the use of clipping diodes. I don't know for sure that it is the diode clipping itself that I don't get along with, but I want to explore that hypothesis. While I am most interested in cascaded stages such as the Liquid Sunshine and the Distortron, I suppose opamp clipping is a valid tangent.
 

KBN

Member
Messages
1,087
Diode clipping isn't necessarily the culprit. It may contribute burials solely why. With thatsaid there are tons of pedals on the market that use various of methods of clipping without diodes. You may want to try a mu-amp based of/distortion as well as a number of different fet style circuits.
I don't know anything about mu amps. I guess I need to do some reading.
 

Aquinas

Member
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1,585
Blackstone SORTA qualifies - AFAIK it uses a mosFET chip with multiple transistors wired like diodes to do the clipping. Hotcake and Red Llama/Hot Tubes were my first thoughts of non-diode clipping.
 

Blues Lyne

Member
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3,464
I think the Catalinbread SFT, DLS and possibly the Formula 5 and the OceanEFX Pearl Drive would fit the parameters that you are looking for. Also the pedals based on the BSIAB.
 

critter74

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,016
I don't have any other pedals to add but the Blackstone is a great pedal (if it does indeed qualify) and I agree with you the Liquid Sunshine is great. I really, really like that pedal. So I'm kind of interested i this thread as well as once I played the Liquid Sunshine, I kind of had a "Aha!" moment...

I'm sure I will be corrected and probably have this all wrong, but doesn't the Tim and Timmy, though having diodes, does not use them for clipping? I thought I had read Paul mentioning that the diodes were afterward as merely a signal boost after the clipping stages? IDK, I'm probably wrong and messed that up fully...
 




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