Best Overdrive for when you you can’t turn up your tube amp enough?

Discussion in 'The Stomp Box' started by Ian T, Dec 1, 2018.

  1. basher

    basher Tele-Afflicted

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    I've found the best way to get satisfying distorted guitar sounds at home is to marry someone who loves your playing and set up your practice room on the end of the house next to the deaf neighbor.
     
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  2. Obsessed

    Obsessed Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I walked away from the typical OD/dirt pedals and have gone with amp emulation pedals. Catalinbread's 5F6 and Formula No. 5, plus the Lovepedal JTM are the ones serving me well nowadays.
     
  3. wrathfuldeity

    wrathfuldeity Tele-Afflicted

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    I stack a germanium frequency booster > Aya Drivesta > JD10 Session Master > George Dennis GD25 volume pedal > MuchXS 5 watt tube champ clone. Anyway am able to get any desired od/dist/fuzz at whisper volume or not.
     
  4. E5RSY

    E5RSY Poster Extraordinaire

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  5. wulfenganck

    wulfenganck Tele-Holic

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    My Fulltone OCD seems to be the one pedal leaving the basic sound of the amp intact and just adding from slight grit up to solid distortion.
    I use it for low-gain/slight breakup. My main crunch tone comes from my amp.
    If I didn't have the OCD, I'd probably go for a booster to crank the amp up. I did that before with a T-Rex Tonebug Booster, it has a notch filter to adjust certain mid-frequencies. worked fine for amps close to breakup-point, but as I need a true clean tone, the OCD is better.
     
  6. Royal Tele

    Royal Tele Tele-Holic

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    Another suggestion in favor of trying an attenuator, here. Your original question says it all--looking for something that can get you the overdrive you want out of your amp when you aren't able to turn it up loud enough outright... You typically don't use pedals, but rather plug straight in and crank the amp for overdrive. That's heaven for me, too. In my opinion, you won't get that from any pedal. Using an attenuator is the best route. Now, don't get me wrong, I enjoy throwing overdrives in front of an amp from time to time--especially for boosting the front end with low (or no) gain, high volume output from a basic OD. But I'm always doing that into an amp that's already cranked. (And I'm almost always using a Rivera Rock Crusher attenuator with a 50w or 100w Marshall.) At the end of the day--ask yourself one thing--why do all of the various overdrive pedals throughout the last few decades all fight and claim to do the best job of "giving you the tone of a cranked amp"? Because that's king--a cranked amp. You've already figured that out, since you usually don't use pedals and just turn it up. There's truth in the fact that sheer volume, feedback, moving air, speaker breakup, etc. all contribute in big ways to that sound. But a huge part of that sound is the circuit of your amp getting overdriven and pushed to its limits. The only way to achieve that aspect of the equation while keeping volume under control is to use an attenuator. Good luck!
     
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  7. jtcnj

    jtcnj Tele-Holic

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    I play (badly) at home only in my basement.

    When I have to play pretty quietly, everything sounds kind of thin and lifeless. Its just dirt tone(s) backdrop to practice technique.
    Rat2, Soul Food, Daddy'O, TS5, other cheapy whatever.

    When I can turn up a good bit, even 4-5W 5F1 8" is pretty frickin' loud.
    My 5E3 and 18w TMB, both 12" even more so.

    I am waiting on parts to build Rob's 8Ω 1/4 power soak as a speaker cable unit with the resistors in a small pedal box.

    Will still be loud I expect but more of the good stuff at lower volume I hope.

    https://robrobinette.com/5e3_Modifications.htm#Quarter_Power_Switch
     
  8. Marc Morfei

    Marc Morfei Tele-Holic

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    As I am guessing people have already suggested, you might as well ask "what is the best color in the rainbow?"
     
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  9. Marc Morfei

    Marc Morfei Tele-Holic

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    OK, I went back and sorted through the previous responses, and i am amazed nobody yet answered the obvious:
    There is no way to answer the question, without knowing (a) how much money do you want to spend, and (b) what do you want it to sound like. There are a thousand different gain/overdrive pedals out there. They all sound different. Except for the ones that sounds kinda the same. There is no such thing as a "best" one.
     
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  10. gkterry

    gkterry Tele-Meister

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    The one pedal I could not do without is a Timmy. It has everything from a boosted clean to a Marshall-ish crunch. Super versatile pedal at a very reasonable price.
     
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