Vintage ProCo RAT at higher voltage?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by MrKite89, Feb 4, 2015.

  1. MrKite89

    MrKite89 Member

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    Hi, I recently bought a 1987 "Small Box" RAT, and it sounds awesome!
    But I was asking myself, would it be safe to power it at 12, or 18 volts for example?
    I'm looking for a little bit of headroom and dynamics, an a slightly more open sound, especially in the bass department...
    Thanks in advance for your info!
     
  2. tremolo3

    tremolo3 Member

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    Yeah, actually, I run mine at 24V.
     
  3. MrKite89

    MrKite89 Member

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    Hey, thanks for your answer!
    24 volts? Are you frying it? ;) How could be safe running a 9V circuit at 24?! The limit? The sky? ;)
    Anyway, how does it sound at 24V compared to 9?
    Thank you very much...
     
  4. Jahn

    Jahn Listens to Johnny Marr, plays like John Denver Supporting Member

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    I run my whiteface RI at 12v. In my mind, I get a cleaner tighter response for longer before the dirt kicks in, and once the dirt kicks in, again it's tighter and cleaner.
     
  5. MrKite89

    MrKite89 Member

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    Thanks for your contribution!
    Have you read in the manual that is safe or it's just common knowledge?
    I'm trying to figure out the maximum safe voltage in order to maximize headroom and have a flatter response...I suppose 12V are just fine, but what is the limit?
     
  6. ItsaRat!

    ItsaRat! Member

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    Without modification, I would not recommend it. Because of component tolerances both in the cap and voltage swing in power supplies you may find that you can run it hotter than 9v. However, the cap is rated for a max of 16v, so you could go over that by using a 12v power supply due to the aforementioned voltage swing. It's possible, as you're seeing, that you might be able to get away with it, or, you may find that it'll take an even higher voltage, but it's a risk.

    If you want to be sure that your Rat can handle 18v, change C1 to a 100mf electrolytic cap, and you'll be good.
     
  7. TheoDog

    TheoDog Silver Supporting Member

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    Good info here, but why would anyone want more headroom from a dirt, especially a Rat?
    Seems counterintuitive.
     
  8. Jahn

    Jahn Listens to Johnny Marr, plays like John Denver Supporting Member

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    I've run my WF RI on 12v since the reissues came out no prob. How many years is that? Don't remember but it hasn't crapped out yet.
     
  9. MrKite89

    MrKite89 Member

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    Well, I don't want more "headroom" really, but more "refined" tone if it makes sense...

    higher voltage = more clarity, better dynamics, cleaner, smoother tone...all useful things, especially at high gain settings, at least for my playing... :)
     
  10. MrKite89

    MrKite89 Member

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    If it's built like an original it's a tank!
    Mine is a 1987 and works perfectly in every aspect...I have a TS808HW that has a scratchy pot!
     
  11. Michael_V

    Michael_V Supporting Member

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    Interesting. It never occurred to me to try my Rat at a higher voltage. I have a Keeley modded '92 blackface Rat. Wonder if it would be safe to try that at 12V? 18V?
     
  12. MrKite89

    MrKite89 Member

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    Thank you for the info!

    Anyway I don't want to do any mod 'cause it's a wonderful pedal, and I have good results now running at 12v and "flattening" the tone with a touch of Dyna Comp...it's a good Comp-romise... ;)
     
  13. MrKite89

    MrKite89 Member

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    p.s.
    The power supply is a Voodoo Lab Mondo with an inverter cable: the current seems really stable...
     
  14. MrKite89

    MrKite89 Member

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    Never thought of UNDER-power it? I tried with a carbon-zinc GP battery measuring 7.46v: it sounded quite good! More like a open, compressed tweed amp at low settings, and like a fuzz at higher settings! But I need solid distortion tones from this pedal, I have a Steelphon Pep Fuzz for my flubbier tones...

    Quite interesting tones changing voltage or power source... ;)
     
  15. ItsaRat!

    ItsaRat! Member

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    Underpowering Rats sounds killer! I recently revamped my board, and wanted to get the voodoo labs PP2 which has that option, but I already have an original PP. I'm running an M5, Two Strymons, and a Superego, so I had to go with the pedal power digital/PP combo. I was really into starving my Rat. :(

    IME, running the Rat at higher voltage changes the feel. It's hard for me to articulate what it does to the tone, but probably the most notable thing is that the "choking" that some folks experience at higher gain settings can be much reduced. This experience is born out of our experiments in modifying the WFRAT to come up with the FatRat.
     
  16. MrKite89

    MrKite89 Member

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    Yes sir!
    To power all my pedalboard (true bypass looper and other high current devices included) I use the Pedal Power Mondo, that essentially is a PP2 and a Digital together...works really well! The two little sag knobs let you achieve (and replicate) many different tones, very cool feature! Underpowering analog pedals leads to sublime, different, or simply ugly but interesting tones! ;)
    Yes, to me the tone is very similar with the Rat at higher voltage, but sounds uncompressed, you have more dynamics and doesn't sound as "muddy" as it can be at 9v, for example with a little combo slightly pushed...I prefer to underpower a germanium fuzz or a wah, to create a "squashed" effect...
    Please let me know if I miss the point or I write too bad, 'cause english is not my language! :)
     
  17. TheoDog

    TheoDog Silver Supporting Member

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    I can get on board with that. More "crispy" less "creamy"
     
  18. MrKite89

    MrKite89 Member

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    True! ;)
     

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