vibe pedals vs. vibrato on amps

slowburn

Supporting Member
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1,923
if one gets a vibro champ, or a princeton, for example that have vibrato, how does that compare to using a vibe pedal? is there a difference?
 

bobgoblin

Supporting Member
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1,492
ok, the labeling on fender amps is wrong, they do not have true vibrato (pitch modulation), they have tremolo (volume modulation). vibe pedals (the ones i know) often try for that uni-vibe effect (leslie). as the "classic" leslie sound is that of an organ (b-3, rhodes) being pumped through them, the effect being approximated by these pedals usually has a slight "chorus-y" sound as well as pitch modulation (to approximate the stationary driver (speaker) & the oscillating horn driver. at least that's the way its been explained to me.
 

erksin

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23,158
"Vibrato" on Fender amps is NOT vibrato - it's tremolo. The only amps that had true pitch-shifting vibrato were the Magnatones of the 50s/60s.

A Vibe unit isn't vibrato either - it's sort of a cross between phasing and tremolo...

And on guitars - it's a vibrato, not tremolo.

Fender really did a nice job out of confusing the hell out of us, didn't they..?
 

Memorex

Member
Messages
610
Not exactly, vibe units do true pitch bending via phase shifting, but when the shifted signal is combined with the original signal, you hear the phase shifting effect due to cancellation. If you take a vibe and set the mix to 100% effect (assuming it does that), it sounds like true pitch vibrato. Tremolo on most amps is just amplitude modulation, and a Tremolo bar on guitar is really a vibrato bar. It gets confusing.
 

BmoreTele

Member
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1,134
I think we've just about covered it, except -

The original Uni-Vibe was trying to do a Leslie, but failed and came up with an entirely new and cool effect.

Juke amps also have pitch modulation vibrato.

The "vibrato" on the Vibro Champ and Princeton is a very cool sounding tremolo.

I have a Voodoo Vibe AND an EHX Pulsar tremolo in my rig.
 

fr8_trane

Supporting Member
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6,793
As for comparing amp tremolo to pedal trems the answer is...

Ummm...well...its complicated.

Lots of guys swear by amp trem. Keep in mind there are two distinct kinds. The bias trem found on the princetons and champs (among others) and the opto trem found on all other BF fender amps. The bias trem is more subtle and "throbby" than the choppier opto style. There are inherent problems with amp based trem. They can be noisy; the tubes wear out and need to be replaced; they can audibly tick; in the BF amps they divert gain from the circuit. I have also read that the bias based trem can wear out power tubes or even damage the amp if not properly maintained. Personally I like pedal trem. The good ones are virtually indistinguishable from the amp based trems with none of the negatives. Hell even the cheapo Dano trem sounds good to me especially if you only need trem on a couple of tunes per gig. YMMV
 

drbob1

Silver Supporting Member
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26,564
Well, I think there're a few more types of amp "tremelo" out there:
1. Tweed, which I believe is similar to the Vibrochamp-takes part of 1 tube, varies the volume of the signal.

2. Brown-uses 1 1/2-2 tubes and varies the bias on the power tubes, very deep and swirling.

3. Opto-the BF version, uses a little light to basically shut off the signal, can be subtle to very choppy, varies volume.

4. Magnatone-uses a circuit I don't understand to actually change the pitch of the note, kind of seasick if used too much, but as a subtle thing can be very useful.

5. There's a lot of other amps out there using variations on these circuits, but #1 is the commonest. I'm not sure what Vox uses for example, although it can be very useful.

Pedals can't exactly copy the interaction between the various parts of the amp, so they reduce complexity somewhat. That said, they make some very good sounds. I think you need both in your stable, but if you gig with "tremelo" I think the Brown or Black fenders are the best sounding.
 

threm

Member
Messages
676
"Any phaser will do vibrato... you just switch off the direct signal that is normally mixed in with the phase shifted signal."
Jack/AMZ-FX

Some "Pure vibrato" effects;

SIB Vibromatic $130
http://www.stevesmusiccenter.com/SIBMrVibromatic.html

EH The Wiggler $200
http://www.ehx.com/ehx2/Default.asp?q=f&f=/Catalog/14_Modulation/24_The_Wiggler

Austone Vibrostomp at $369 Clips on the site
http://www.austone-electronics.com/...ibro-stomp.html



BJF Mint Green Mini Vibe $425 Clips on the site
http://www.musictoyz.com/guitar/pedals/bjf.php

VIBROMAN 2.0 STEREO VIBRATO
Prices start at.......... $1900.00 US Dollars
http://www.vibroworld.com/product.html
 

erksin

Member
Messages
23,158
And the Frantone 'Vibutron' as well...

I picked up a DLS Chorus-Vibe, and it has killer vibrato tones. Very comparable to my old '62 Magnatone 440...
 

LSchefman

Member
Messages
13,435
I have tremelo on the Tremoverb in my studio, and a tremelo pedal by Fulltone on my pedalboard hooked up to my Onyx.

Believe it or not, I actually like the Fulltone's trem better than the one on the Mesa, and I do like the Mesa one! The Austone is also killer, a great sounding Trem.

Vibe units are, indeed, quite different from tremelos.
 
Messages
7,411
The Austone has both vibrato (not "vibe") and tremolo, but not at the same time. I like the vibrato effect on it best, which surprised me.
 

erksin

Member
Messages
23,158
Originally posted by decay-o-caster
The Austone has both vibrato (not "vibe") and tremolo, but not at the same time. I like the vibrato effect on it best, which surprised me.
The Austone pedals Vibrato is a DEAD ON Magnatone simulation - I just couldn't sink that much $$$ into an effect I use that sparingly. Beautiful tones in that box...
 

9520575

Member
Messages
4,083
This is a really great vintage TGP thread. Wanted to bring it back.

I want to know more about amp vibrato vs vibe pedals. The world has changed in the past 9 years.
Its the same answer. Amp vibrato, as labeled by fender is a tremolo.

A univibe is a type of phaser.

Then there is
Harmonic Tremolo or “Harmonic Vibrato”- 1959-1963, Brown & Blonde Face Amps. Although, not all the tremolos of that era had the harmonic tremolo, bias tremolo was still on some models. The firsts came in 1959 with the Vibrosonic & Concert. After which the following amps had the harmonic tremolo: the blonde Bandmaster, the blonde Twin, the blonde Showman, the brown Pro, the brown Bandmaster, the brown Twin, the brown Super. It is operated by splitting the signals high frequencies and low frequencies. The LFO is applied to both, one side has the positive pulse and the other has the negative pulse. Then they are then summed. The harmonic tremolo required more tubes and circuits than the standard bias tremolo. The sound is not pitch vibrato nor is it just amplitude modulation. Its closer to a phaser, with the pulse (LFO) of a tremolo. It wasn’t very popular and was quickly replaced in the blackface era with LDR tremolo circuit.
In pedal form: coldcraft harmonic tremolo,toadworks pipeline, fuchs (plush) creme de la trem, catalinbread pareidolia, strymon flint, twin peaks, cardinal. Are the best recreations. Weber “ReVibe” kit, real tube driven harmonic tremolo
 
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522
In short, laymans' terms:

Amp vibrato=tremolo-volume wobbling.
Vibe pedal=modulation-pitch bending phasey.

Examples:
amp vibrato=Nancy Sinatra "Bang Bang", Buffalo Springfield "For what it's Worth"
Vibe pedal=Pink Floyd "Breathe", Band of Gypsies (Hendrix) "Machine Gun"

There's the difference in a nutshell.
 

9520575

Member
Messages
4,083
In short, laymans' terms:

Amp vibrato=tremolo-volume wobbling.
Vibe pedal=modulation-pitch bending phasey.

Examples:
amp vibrato=Nancy Sinatra "Bang Bang", Buffalo Springfield "For what it's Worth"
Vibe pedal=Pink Floyd "Breathe", Band of Gypsies (Hendrix) "Machine Gun"

There's the difference in a nutshell.
No.
A vibe is a phase shifter not pitch modulation. vibrato is pitch modulation. Tremolo is amplitude modulation.

Amp vibrato can mean several types of sound, which are listed in this thread. Fender has two different sounding vibrato, nether is vibrato.

Tremolo means to repeatly play the same note very fast. It was invented in the 16th century. Amplitude modulation mimics the effect.

Vibrato changes the frequency of the note. Mostly used by singers. Your tremolo arm on a guitar loosens or tightens the strings just like a singer loosens and tightens their vocal muscles. This causes the note to change frequency.

A vibe is a phase shifter. It changes the phase of the sound. Which causes phase cancellation when mixed with the original sound. Which may seem like pitch shifting. It isn't though.

Nutshell
Tremolo same note played rapidly.
Vibrato a note which changes pitch.
Vibe a phase shifter.
 




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