Small Fry internal trim pots

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by jbert58, Sep 2, 2008.

  1. jbert58

    jbert58 Member

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    Just picked one of these up and so far I'm really liking it. I am tempted to leave the internal trim pots well enough alone, but I am wondering if many of you Small Fry owners out there have experimented with adjusting the pots and if you could share your experiences and tips.

    • Is it worth trying out, or did most of you who tweaked them return to stock settings?
    • Are there any of the trims that have a more pronounced effect on the tone than others (i.e. note shape?), and if so, are there any specific adjustments you would recommend?
    Thanks!

    Jbert
     
  2. thewex

    thewex Member

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    I have never messed w/mine personally, but would love to hear from those who have as well!
     
  3. soopajeanmi

    soopajeanmi Member

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    The internal trim pots have a *very* noticable effect on the tone. No rocket science here: they're basically a 3 band EQ and a "character of the overdrive" trims.

    Try them with *your* setup: that's what they're here for.

    Mine came setup for a guy who ended with a OCD: he had the mids at minimum and tone shape at the stiffer setting (minimum I think).

    I use mine more for a zendrive kind of tone: mids are 1:00 tone shape 2:00
     
  4. dirtnap101

    dirtnap101 Member

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    I've messed with them - they are wonderful to dial in the specific sound you want. I love pedals that are tweakable, like the Small Fry and the Silver Kiss - it means I don't have to mess with my clean sound.

    Try them out - make a note of the current settings and then go to town. You can always set it back to the way it was.
     
  5. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

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    When you open it up a couple of things...

    1) Take a digital photo or two, with high-def (most pixels) and good light, make sure it is focused.

    2) Take a felt tip permanent marker and at least on some types of trimpots with wide front faces, you can make a single mark from inner circle (wiper part) to outer part of trimpot (body). This will be able to match up just about perfectly later.

    3) if you have a multimeter, even better is to run a signal through maybe and just note voltages to ground at pins 1, wiper, pin 3. This is overkill, but it is great for getting it back to spec stock if you really want to.

    1 & 2 are critical and ought to be done always. When you move the trimpot and want it back the mark will (if you made a solid one) line up again exactly where it was.
     
  6. jbert58

    jbert58 Member

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    Thanks very much for the comments folks, and thanks for the detailed explanation David. Nothing like having the designer/builder himself answer your question!

    If you have the time David, could you provide a quick explanation of what the note shape adjustment does and describe how it translates sonically?

    Many thanks.

    Jbert
     
  7. jbert58

    jbert58 Member

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    Great. Thanks so much for the info.

    Cheers,

    Jbert.
     
  8. popsongsmith

    popsongsmith Senior Member

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    Hey Dave, not to hijack the thread, but I've always wondered why the trimpot controls aren't mounted on the outside of the pedal. For those of us with multiple guitar/amp setups, it really is a drag to have to unscrew the thing every time a minor tweak is necessary. I don't own one, but it looks like the Fulltone Distortion Pro employs something along these lines.

    Thoughts?
     
  9. Buddy Boy

    Buddy Boy Member

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    Tim Bascomb told me about this pedal. After reading this..."I gotta get me one of these!"
     
  10. Jujo

    Jujo Supporting Member

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    I played with my internals trims. They rock! I was able to vary the tone quite a bit.
     
  11. popsongsmith

    popsongsmith Senior Member

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    Thanks Dave, that's a really useful explanation. Come to think of it, couldn't you split the difference and have the best of both worlds? Kind of like the screw-pots on the Blackstone?
     
  12. drmathprog

    drmathprog Member

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    It's nice that they are there, but I find the Small Fry just the way it came.
     
  13. mc2

    mc2 Member

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    It's a pedal that is worth spending some time with, and revisiting the int. trims. I played with mine stock for about a month and tweaked things around a bit. Since then, I switched amps and didn't like to SF as much, but after about 20 minutes inside, I got that nice smooth sound I like. So, yeah, go for it!

    A question for David-do you have a favorite setting on the Small Fry?
     
  14. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

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    That's one reason I would mark the original positions of the trimpots with a felt tip pen.

    As a general rule pedalmakers have it tough....a metal guy might be using their pedal, or a guy playing a cheapo guitar into a bad sounding amp, or opposite...point is they generally try and make their settings as universal as possible. Same problem really as engineers mastering a CD...they have to make sure it plays well in quality stereos and boom boxes..

    So, just as you found, if I tweaked a pedal to sound absolute best in my current setup, then changed amps...if it didn't immidiately sound as good, I would start again at the "factory" settings and go from there as they have the best chance of being good, or almost there.

    Same thing if I knew I was going to play the pedal in a number of different amps, I would make sure to tweak as little as possible, or at least be able to get back to factory specs.
     
  15. LowWatt

    LowWatt Member

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    Great idea! I would love to see more internal trimpot pedal designs use that move. No risk of accidentally knocking it out of position and/or breaking the micropot and easy access to changes. It really strikes me as the best of both worlds for that design style.
     

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