Xotic RC / AC differences?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by JeffMN, Jun 19, 2006.

  1. JeffMN

    JeffMN Member

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    Hi all,

    Just curious... what are the differences between the Xotic RC and AC boosters? For that matter, the BB preamp as well? I'm looking for a booster pedal, and I saw a video of Scott Henderson playing some of the Xotic pedals. Got me interested, but the info on the website doesn't really go into much detail about what the pedals do... and they all have the same controls!

    So what are the differences between them? Anyone know?

    Thanks!
     
  2. McSoappy

    McSoappy Member

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    The RC is kinda Tube Screamerish, the AC has considerable more gain, and the BB Preamp has almost a screaming Marshall kinda thing.

    For a boost I would go with the RC, and MAYBE the AC depending on your rig.
     
  3. abuloso

    abuloso Member

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    Oops, Correction here bro...RC has no where near as much gain as the Tubescreamer. Its actually a Really Clean pedal...Only has just a slight bit of grit to it when gain is turned up all the way. The AC is tubescreamerish..but doesn't have a great mid hump and is more articulate.
     
  4. suhr_rodney

    suhr_rodney Supporting Member

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    The RC is 100% clean boost. You can use it to push a cookin' amp over the edge. The important thing is that there is no tonal change (unless you adjust the treble/bass controls).

    The AC is more Tube Screamer like IMHO. It scoops the mids a bit and does a good job at the medium gain tones. When the RC is fed into the AC the combination is very sweet, with signing tones.

    I've only tried the BB a time or two, but it reminds me a little of the AC and RC combined. It also reminds me of an OCD, but with less scooped mids.
     
  5. JeffMN

    JeffMN Member

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    Wow, thanks for the replies, guys!

    Currently, I have a rather crazy 10 space rack / head / cab setup. I'd like to trim down and lose the rack if I can. For a head, I have a Marshall SL-X 100 watt. Yeah, it's capable of insane gain, but I don't run it overly hot. I want a clean boost to hit it for leads. I have a Z-Vex SHO, but for whatever reason, that just doesn't sound good with that amp. I use it with my Vibroverb combo, and it's the cat's a$$ - but not for the Marshall. The gig I'm in covers a lot of territory, and the Marshall cleans up pretty good (for a Marshall, anyway...) but if I set it to a nice drive setting that cleans up... it's just not quite enough for leads by using only the volume control on my guitar.

    I saw a video on the Xotic site of Scott Henderson playing these pedals. Yeah, he's Scott Henderson, and he has a CAE OD100, but I liked the sound he was getting out of it - amp was set for just a touch of OD, and between the Booster and the BB preamp, he could go to saturation. That's what I'm after! I'm interested because while the SHO doesn't sound that great to me in this situation, the tone knobs on the Xotic pedals might make a difference...? Or not. :D
     
  6. Unburst

    Unburst Member

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    RC is nothing like a Tube Screamer, it is a clean boost with treble and bass eq and a small amount of grit when the gain is cranked.

    Th AC is more tube screamer like but without the mid hump.

    BB is has more gain and low end than the AC, not Marshally to my ears, very smooth and compressed, but in a good way.

    I had an SHO and liked it but it was too strident with my Fender Twin, the RC Booster is an awesomely versatile pedal that has so many uses, great as a clean boost, great for balancing up pickups, great for setting a preset clean tone if you have a crunchy amp.


    I like to use the RC as an amp front panel at my feet, I use it all kinds of different ways, one of my faves is to use it in front of the BB for articulate, saturated leads.

    They're great pedals and the Henderson vids are pretty representative, imo.
     
  7. Dajbro

    Dajbro Member

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    That's how I hear it too. To my ears the AC is fairly compressed as well.

    If you want something to bump your Marshall, I'd definately go with the RC. It is a great pedal and the eq knobs are voiced really well also.

    David
     
  8. raz

    raz Member

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    I concur with all the above...though I think the BB can be very Marshallesque if you keep the gain in the midrange. Not "screaming hot-rodded Marshall" but still along Marshall lines. When you crank the BB wide open, it gets very liquid and compressed. More like idealized Mesa to me, without the low-end flab.

    Depending, of course, what amp you have it in front of..
     
  9. drolling

    drolling Member

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    We're into that subjective definition of what constitutes "clean" again, as my RC Booster's got plenty of 'dirt', 'grit', 'crunch', or whatever you wanna call it - wouldn't have bought it if it didn't.

    Not to say that it won't do a clean boost - it also does a great job of that, but the last quarter turn of the gain knob yeilds an overdriven tone that's very good for rhythm work. Beautifully voiced EQ, too. Some players find it 'sterile' or 'hi-fi' or some such thing, but IMNSHO, it's hard to get a bad sound out of this one.

    Pretty much in agreement about the AC - I've got a drawerfull of pedals that can more or less do the same.

    Love the BB, tho'. Don't own one myself, but I wouldn't mind..

    BTW, they all *stack* very nicely - I think they were designed to be used that way. I'd happily play all night w/just these 3, and maybe a delay..

    ..and a wah.

    ..and maybe a
     
  10. Unburst

    Unburst Member

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    I rarely go above 12 o'clock on the gain, so that's probably why it's a clean boost to me, it can get crunchy but it's not what it's best at imo.
     
  11. radcliff

    radcliff Member

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    RC stands for REALLY CLEAN

    AC stands for ALMOST CLEAN

    really
     
  12. JeffMN

    JeffMN Member

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    Awesome! That makes total sense. I think I'm gonna shoot for the RC to start. Thanks for the input everyone, I appreciate it! :dude
     
  13. McSoappy

    McSoappy Member

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    I guess where I'm coming from when I talked about the RC being tube screamer like it because I never really liked the "gain" a tubescreamer offered. I usually used it as a clean boost pedal more than anything because of the whole mid hump thing..........I guess I should have put that in my applications of a Tubescreamer the RC is somewhat like it.

    Geez tone police over here...LOL!:eek:

    That's good though, I too am a bit crazy over all this stuff.............good call out guys!:BEER
     
  14. raj

    raj Member

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    I've heard that it can fatten up the tone, is it true?
    I'm using it with a SS amp on clean at home.
     
  15. MemphisCR

    MemphisCR Member

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    The RC is a great pedal, very versatile. I actually leave mine on all the time to add juiciness to the tone, and I've talked to other users who do the same. With the gain at about 11:00 it will talk an amp that's just barely breaking up and add a little girth underneath (I hope I spelled "girth" right). You can cut the gain back a little, to say 9:00, pump the volume and have a fantastic clean boost. I use an EL84 based class A amp, and when driven, I can dime the gain on the RC and take it into sonic heaven. Obviously not high gain but that rich, lush, crashing glass type of overdrive. The previous comments posted about the EQ are spot on as well. You can tame single coil strats or teles by cutting back on the treble a little or beef them up by uping the base. With EQ set straight up at 12:00 there is absolutely no coloration in tone at all, very transparent. It's seriously one of the best pedals I've ever heard/had, you won't go wrong with it.
     
  16. clothwiring

    clothwiring Supporting Member

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    I have an RC and BB coming, really looking forward to getting them. With the transparency and boosts/drives I think they'll work great with the Matchless.
     
  17. McSoappy

    McSoappy Member

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    MMMM Matchless.........that'll probably be my next amp. I'm thinking about a DC-30 or a Lightning.
     
  18. Lucidology

    Lucidology Member

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    All the points you make are right on Unburst ...

    However, I would say the AC is closer to sounding like my Zendrive,
    then any of my TS type pedals... only the AC mids aren't quite as thick as my Zendrive's ...

    That being said, I found the AC to work with single coils much better ...
     

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