Help with my Sound

(17 posts)

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  1. Chris
    Member

    Hello y'all..

    I am a Student.
    I use a Fender Deluxe Reverb with the Treble rolled completely off, Bass at 4, Reverb just below 3,
    and Speed/Intensity at 0.
    I love how this sounds using either my es 175 or Strat - running clean into the Vibrato channel of the amp. Love it.
    Sometimes I use a bit of Delay. I mainly use the MXR Carbon Copy but also have a Boss DD7 and experiment with both of them (not on gigs but in the woodshed) trying to decide which I like better (or if they are both lame). Still things sound great.. Very professional, very clean. I like it.

    However..
    When I throw distortion in the mix my sound just falls apart. I bought an 80s RAT. Still trying to figure out the best way to incorporate it. Even when I find levels I like (Distorion, Filter, Volume), the sound is not concentrated enough. Too many overtones. Advice? Should I get a compressor? Or would an EQ solve this problem? How can I get a good distorted-concentrated sound? What would Kurt do?

    Using the Deluxe Reverb, how can I get a louder sound out of my es 175 without getting feedback? What would Bernstein do?

    At the small music school I attend, all the ensemble rooms have massive florescent lights. How can I get rid of the sound of frying eggs?

    I've always used a touch of Spring Reverb. Even with the distortion on. Is that my problem? Should I kill the Reverb completely?

    How is the Blue Sky Reverb. The HolyGrail? I never really got why people had reverb pedals if they were playing out of a fender. Huh? Maybe I should try these pedals, they must be good ehh.

    If you can answer these questions - I owe you a drink.
    Best

  2. jorgemg1984
    Member

    That's a lot of questions...

    1) Maybe you just don't like the RAT. In my case I have a TS with a RC 808 in the same pedal. This gives me both eq and booster which helps a lot. I just sold my custom made RAT and I am getting a new one with the BYOC Fet preamp after it, which will give me eq and booster too. IMO post-eq / boosting helps a lot with distortion pedals... I will also add a mosfet clipping which makes the RAT very OD and two ruetz pots which also help eq a lot. I usually run the filter on max and cut treble on the post-eq and add trhe bass the pedal kills. You might need to try another OD pedals...

    2) In the jazzguitar.be forum there are tons of excellent feedback threads. The better one is f-holes, that was my route.

    3) You can use distortion and reverb, plenty of jazzers do that. People go for reverb pedals because they willl give you much more options and controls than your reverb amp... I am not a big fan of spring reverb for example,. I like plate or hall much more. And even in spring reverb the new Hardwire Supernatural, trough youtube clips, sounds exactly like a 63 Fender Reverb. And you don't need all the problems of spring reverb: a lot of amp space, reliability, tanks seem to all sound different, etc... If I had an amp built for me I would put the BYOC Reverb 2, sound great and it's a very small digital reverb, much simpler and smaller than a reverb tank circuit. Fuchs does that too on his cheaper combos and people love the reverb.

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  3. Chris
    Member

    Thank you for your advice Jorge. Much appreciated. I will try getting an new OD Pedal, or experiment using compression and eq with my Rat..

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  4. Poparad
    Member

    A lot of the richness of a distortion pedal comes from the overtones, and with the highs completely killed on your amp, and I'm assuming probably turned down on your guitar, you won't be getting a very crisp distortion. I frequently switch to my bridge pickup that I have a separate tone knob for, set to a full-on bright sound. I also play through a DR amp, which is a great amp for pedals of all kinds.

  5. jorgemg1984
    Member

    These days I run my tone on 10 and the filter on the rat on 10 always. Then I have a clean dedicated eq and a distortion dedicated eq. These pedals attenuate any extreme sparkle without killing it - the guitar tone knob and the rat filter knob tend to kill sparkle which is very different from attenuating it to my ears.

    I am a big fan of a post-od active baxandall eq - so you can cut / boost bass and treble as needed and using the full frequency spectrum of the od pedal.

    I am actually not a fan of the DRRI. The treble is too harsh even after the bright clip mod and a speaker swap imo... The Fender tone stack tends do have too much high mids and not enough low mids. If you get the DUncan Tone Stack calculator, with the bass on 4 and the treble on zero you will not have much low mids but you will still have lots of high mids which leads to a pleasant clean sound (to some) but maybe not enough mids with an od. That's why so many people like TS type pedals with Fenders, the mid-hump they have makes the OD sound much more present... I have a TS pedal where you can change the mid-hump frequency and 500hz (700hz is stock) is great with Fenders. A Dumble type pedal like a Zendrive is also quite fat which is good for Fenders.

    Good luck!

  6. daschwarjazz
    Member

    In stock form, I find that the DRRI does not play well with overdrives and distortions. Doing the bright clip mod is a definite must. I also switched to a darker sounding speaker, an Eminence Cannabis Rex, which is currently my favorite.

    I've never been a fan of RAT pedals, even the vintage ones. However, I built a BYOC mouse pedal (http://buildyourownclone.com/mouse.html) which is fantastic. You can usually already built ones on ebay. You might also want to check out the Fulltone OCD and Fulldrive. Both are capable of getting a Rosenwinkel-esque overdrive, if that's what you are looking for.

    To be honest, I never use my DRRI if a gig calls for overdrive tones. For that I use an original American Hot Rod Deluxe (the newer Mexican ones sound just fine, btw) that has been modified with some nicer components. Mid and presence controls are a must for me, and a lot of the time I put the mid control on 10 with barely any treble or bass and it sounds great even if I'm at home practicing with the volume barely past 1. If you listen to players with great overdrive tones such as Kurt, Holdsworth, Henderson, etc., you'll notice that their sound is very mid-heavy. The fact that the DRRI does not have a mid control makes it difficult to achieve these kinds of tones. Now, you can modify the DRRI to have a mid control, but getting an EQ pedal is probably a better investment.

    Now as far as your feedback problem is concerned, there are times when nothing can really be done about it. That said, I find that it helps to position my body in between the guitar and amplifier. I sometimes play with an archtop guitar with a floating pickup, and if my amp is off to either side of me (particularly the right side), I tend to get a lot more feedback than if I stand right in front of it.

    Finally, if fluorescent lights are giving you problems, you might want to give this a try:

    http://www.zzounds.com/item--EBTHUMX

    Hope this helps!

    P.S. Check out http://fenderguru.com/amps/deluxe-reverb

  7. Chris
    Member

    daschwarjazz, thank you so much.

    That is some great advice.. I'm debating on buying the Ibanez TS9DX or the Fulltone OCD. Any advice on an EQ brand. I was thinking MXR?

  8. daschwarjazz
    Member

    Between the TS9DX and the OCD, I'd be more inclined to go with the OCD. It's a little more versatile. You also might want to try the Plimsoul as well. For EQ, the MXR pedals are good, as is the Boss GE-7 (Scofield uses one as a treble boost). Last time I checked, Kurt uses an Empress ParaEq, which usually retails for about $250. The ParaEQ is a great pedal, but the Boss and MXR EQs will probably do the trick for you at half the price.

    The problem with guitar gear is that there is so much of it that it's overwhelming sometimes! This is particularly true when you see a player use an entire effects board filled with expensive pedals or twenty rack units just to get a specific clean or distorted tone. You may think that you have to obtain every component of someone's setup to sound good, but the fact of the matter is that you can approximate most tones with a few pedals and a semi-decent guitar and amp.

  9. Chris
    Member

    Are there any other overdrive or distortion pedals you would recommend. I'm thinking about the OCD.. I want to get a Holdsworth/Rosenwinkel esq. distortion.. Any other EQ brands as well.

  10. 111
    Member

    The fulltone fulldrive is nice there is some cool flexibilty it offers. Good luck, it is a never ending quest for the sound. A lot of it is the player.

  11. daschwarjazz
    Member

    As it just so happens, Rockett audio designs makes an Allan Holdsworth signature OD pedal:

    http://www.rockettpedals.com/signature-series/allan-holdsworth-signature-od-boost/

    At first glance, and from what I've heard, it's not that functionally different from the Fulldrive pedal. For Holdsworth OD tones, I usually use the OCD, which gives me something similar to his tone on "The Sixteen Men of Tain." It will also give you a reasonable 1970s era Holdsworth tone if you bump up the treble frequencies.

    As you probably know, Holdsworth has a pretty elaborate signal path (though not as elaborate as it once was), but one thing people tend to overlook is what kind of pickups and strings he uses. His pickups are low-output, and he uses very light-gauged strings. Carvin makes Holdsworth signature pickups, which at one point I had installed in my Gibson 335. For an example of their clean tone, here is a video I recorded last year:

    [+] Embed the video | Video DownloadGet the Flash Video

    I'm pretty sure that he doesn't use the Carvin pickups in his own guitar. I believe that they are custom Seymour Duncans, which you can special order for a somewhat hefty sum. As far as strings are concerned, he uses LaBella 9 gauge. Personally I can't stand any string gauge lower that 11s, but it's easier to get a more fluid legato using lighter gauges.

    Oh, I almost forgot (as you can tell I LOVE talking about gear), Holdsworth changes the potentiometers from 500k to 250k. The 250k pots produce a darker tone, but I don't think the difference is big enough to make the change worth the effort.

    In your first post you mentioned that you have an ES 175 and a strat. Unfortunately it's going to be very difficult to get a good singing OD without having feedback problems on the ES 175, so instead what I would do is get a set of Seymour Duncan Little 59 humbucker pickups for the neck and bridge positions of your strat (http://www.seymourduncan.com/products/electric/stratocaster/medium-output/little_59_for_s/), and have a push/pull switch installed for coil tapping if you still want single coil tones.

    Next week I'm going to record a tutorial on how to get a Rosenwinkel-esque tone using a bare minimum of gear. Once I get it uploaded on YouTube, I'll post a link in the forum. Hopefully it'll be helpful for everyone!

    If you have more questions, let me know. I could seriously talk about gear all day! Now if only I could get paid to do this somehow...

  12. 111
    Member

    Great post, daschwarjazz. Not sure i completely agree he'll need to replace the pickups at this stage. You can get great tones from a strat. Its hard to explain but the use of distortion is greatly enhanced by technique. Holdsworth, Eric Johnson, etc all have that sound despite gear changes. There is a certain type of attack/legato/muting/volume pot positioning/ vibrato vibrato vibrato that can bring out that particular sound with most rock set ups. Its hard to achieve the Holdsworth sound with any pedal without that technique. What you said definately maximizes the chances and is great advice. In the end chasing after the holdsworth tone may lead you to your own voice or empty your wallet :). Again, so much is in the hands and ears of the player. Years ago when I read of that period when Holdsworth switched from Marshalls to solid state Pierce amps it was like learning the world was round. We are the sound.

  13. Chris
    Member

    other than the green line 6 delay modeler, what pedals are capable of playing my signal in reverse ala Bill Frisell and also studio J Hendrix

    What pedals other than the HOG and green line 6 delay are capable of an expression pedal input?

    [+] Embed the video | Video DownloadGet the Flash Video
    Interesting concept.. Could it be better?

  14. 111
    Member

    Strymon Timeline.

  15. Chris
    Member

    http://www.musiciansfriend.com/amplifiers-effects/ebtech-2-channel-hum-eliminator

    Has anyone tried any of these?
    What about adding boosts to your signal chain? Brands?

    ...If I wanted to buy a brand new American Tele that was already set up properly, where would I go about doing this.. (Granted that I'll def tweak to my liking). I never want to deal with another chain like guitar center or musicians friend again. They're despicable.
    I'm thinking Sadowsky, I just don't have that kind of bread.

    I live in Upstate NY.

  16. signal or loop? the boss loop station for both reverse and an expression pedal

  17. Chris
    Member

    http://www.musiciansfriend.com/amplifiers-effects/ebtech-2-channel-hum-eliminator

    Has anyone used anything like this?

    I just played a bunch of gigs for the end of the semester, but the lights in the theater at my school make my amp sound like its cooking bacon on high.. I tried using a 2 prong elec. input adapter, and tried using both solid state and tube amps... Is it my pick ups?


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