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Whiteface RAT vs. Boss DS-2

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by Miles, May 16, 2011.

  1. Miles

    Miles Member

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    Your thoughts on their voicing and usability? I know they're somewhat different, but would love to hear your thoughts

    Which one sounds better & why?
     
  2. markmantle

    markmantle Member

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    My vote is for the Whiteface Rat.

    I pretty much used a DS1 or DS2 for 10 years. I used to buy them and sell them, buy them and sell them... I didnt know anything about good pedals.. Then I went through a whole bunch of expensive boutique pedals, and ODs... All of them blew the DS1 away, made it sound like a toy... but then i built this rat clone from BYOC, and I can't get enough of it... I think if you learn how to use it, it is one of the greatest dirt pedals ever. It can definitely sound cheap at low volumes, but if you crank the volume on the pedal and have the dist. below 12 o'clock... depending on the guitar, I usually like it at 10 o'clock... it sounds great, stacks amazingly well with other pedals, and cleans up really well for a dist. pedal with the volume knob...

    If you get a DS1 or 2, the older ones are supposed to be better, I believe with the Japanese chip, I could be wrong... I've never tried these.
     
  3. Miles

    Miles Member

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    Hmmm... interesting.

    I'm currently doing exactly what you're describing with my Whiteface Rat. I run the volume of it at around 2:00 with the distortion below noon into my Traynor Bassmaster. Sounds badass. That said, I've heard cool things about the BOSS DS-2, and was curious.
     
  4. BillyK

    BillyK Supporting Member

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    As with the poster above, I've bought/sold way too much gear.

    That said, IMO, nothing comes close to the WFRAT (I have an RI) for higher gain tones.
     
  5. Theroyalconsort

    Theroyalconsort Member

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    the DS-1 and 2 used properly are good pedals.
    a DS1 goosing an already driven amp is a great tone.
    It can be a bit trashy on its own though.

    The Rat works much better on its own than the DS1/2 in my opinion.
    I wouldn't want to plug into a clean fender without one.
    It can get singing tones or light to moderatly distorted tones with some real character and warmth to them. Its my personal favourite.

    My advice on getting a good tone from a Rat would be as follows.

    Set distortion amount as required.

    Turn Filter all the way to the right (Big muddy tone) and then steadily decrease until you hit the sweet spot. Its pretty obvious when you do.
    The sweet spot on the filter varies greatly depending on the amount of distortion, amp EQing and guitar so its difficult to give any advice other than keep twisting the knob till you hit it.
     
  6. DraggAmps

    DraggAmps Member

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  7. jdel77

    jdel77 Silver Supporting Member

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    WF Rat is the 2nd best distortion box I've ever had. My #1 is the Himmelstrutz Fetto Nord. But the WF is an absolute monster of a dirt box through a cranked amp on stage in a band mix. Keep the gain round noon, the volume up around 2 or 3 o'clock and the tone to taste. Enjoy!
     
  8. Miles

    Miles Member

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    Instructive post - thank you very much.

    I'm currently using that exact RAT setting. My Traynor Bassmaster at gig volumes isn't really hitting break up, so based upon your perceptions, a DS1 or DS2 might not be the ideal voicing.

    Currently using the RAT, I'm very content, but I've heard some recordings using those DS2 boxes that sound pretty sick. A bit more aggressive on the top end, perhaps. Yet, still tons of liquid-like mids and sloppy gain - something I like a lot.
     
  9. markmantle

    markmantle Member

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    I think that post may have nailed it. I always used my DS1 with a clean fender or ac30, and I was never really thrilled with my tone... I played my rat (clone) through my buddy's 67 Bandmaster the day, and it sounded amazing. I loved the tone, sustain.. The amp was set clean.

    I know john frusciante of the chili peppers uses or has used a DS2 for solos with his marshall jubilee. I have always liked his tone, I know that he uses a ton of other stuff as well.

    The guitarist in the most popular and longest running cover band in the region where I live has always used a rat. I remember always seeing it on the floor... very simple set up... Colorsound wah, Rat -> Line 6 POD -> clean fender... he nails all sorts of tones with that rig.

    If only I would have known about that rat years ago.. probably would have saved a lot of cash.

    Its funny that the other poster mentioned the Fetto Nord... Im on the list to get one this week... Im pumped. I think with that and the rat, my OD is covered for good!
     
  10. Miles

    Miles Member

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    Yeah, Frusciante sounds cool with his DS-2 through the Marshall.

    I also love the RAT both on a straight clean AND with an amp wound up. Bringing the volume of the RAT up and DIST down makes it act like a very smooth but nasty mid/gain boost.

    The other thing that keeps me with the RAT is the "chirp" it seems to have. You always cut through with a RAT for some reason. It's also great for dropping guitar volume for moderate OD.

    It's looking like I might have my bases already covered with the RAT and Muff Pi for major nastiness. While the DS2 is tempting, it may not really give me anything that I don't already have, and might not do anything I already have any better by grabbing one.
     
  11. Miles

    Miles Member

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  12. nrandall85

    nrandall85 Member

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    I've said this a couple of times before, but my wf rat is the one pedal on my board that I will NEVER sell, and I've been through a lot of dirt.
     
  13. kingofrats

    kingofrats Member

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    Does the WF Rat enter fuzz territory on higher gain settings?
     
  14. V-man

    V-man Member

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    yes, "fuzzish"... loose, breaking apart, etc. It really is bizarre how the ancient 3-knob design yields such a spectrum of options.

    I have yet to find a single likable Boss unit. Plenty of adequate and passable choices, but with the information highway and all the used market options, I can't imagine why anybody would buy a Boss unit other than for modification host or bargain pricing.
     
  15. whiteop

    whiteop Senior Member

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    WFR with the LM308N chip. I have a Rat II that I modded to it's specs then added a few tone options with a rotary switch and some diodes. The Rat is one of the best distortion pedals for live stage use IMHO. I tried using "distortion" pedals but they sounded too harsh and sterile live though they sounded great in the bedroom. I think the majority of non-metal players prefer overdrives for their "distortion" when they play live and the Rat sort of fits in between an overdrive and a distortion pedal though it leans towards the distortion side due to the way the audio signal is clipped.
     
  16. Miles

    Miles Member

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    Yep, my WF utilizes the LM308N.

    So, in your opinion, the DS2 is more the "Distortion" that you described - possibly more sterile for stage use?

    Since I use these pedals for performance and gigging out, that is helpful advice.
     

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