"Always On" light gain pedal

Discussion in 'The Stomp Box' started by Marc Morfei, Aug 29, 2018.

  1. Marc Morfei

    Marc Morfei Tele-Afflicted

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    Yes, good point. I have an AB switch ordered, and this will allow me to set up the top boost channel for crunchiness, which might work fine without need for pedal. For now I have that set for clean.
     
  2. regularslinky

    regularslinky Tele-Holic

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    I use a Barber Gain Changer for this. I have it set to add warmth and a bit of gain in front of a solid state amp. It is very sensitive to volume and touch, very "tube-like." I use other gain pedals in front of it for higher gain sounds and it works great - even a DS1 sounds good into the Barber GC.

    Plus, the Gain Changer does a lot more than low gain - everything from clean boost to heavy overdrive - very versatile and tweakable.
     
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  3. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    The described use is one of my favorite uses for an OD, and I've found the OCD does it very well, in fact it's the only thing I like about the OCD: fattening clean boost with a little treble cut.

    But while some of the suggestions have not come my way, I think the most remarkable pedal for this function I've tried is the XVez Distortron.

    Right now mine has all knobs around 10-11 oclock, subs switch in the middle (meaning I could add or subtract some bass with the switch), gain switch on low.
    It's basically the SHO circuit with a few added controls, and it does something unique to the sound I don't get from any other pedal.
    This setting is totally clean but very fat without getting the nasal mids that often come with fat, and it has a hard to describe sparkle that stays even if the highs are dialed back a bit, where so many tone knobs bring a dulling if you want less treble.

    I'm using it with Esquires which need a little high cut, and I really dislike what many OD/ boost tone knobs do when dialed back.
    Really worth at least trying out.
     
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  4. 6BQ5

    6BQ5 Tele-Afflicted

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    I have tried this, and would like to extend a caveat. Plugging both channels in will change the tone of either channel slightly. It may not be enough to bother you, but just as a heads up. I'd suggest experimenting by hitting a chord or note and letting it ring out, then plug a cable into the other channel. You will probably hear a slight thinning out of the sound. As always, YMMV.
     
  5. Urshurak776

    Urshurak776 Tele-Holic

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    Archtop said it above. The Soul Food would work great for this. $75 new and I have seen them used for about $40. It is not, in my opinion, an exact KLON clone, but it is pretty close. There are several other clones at well under $100 as well. Most are in the $50 range.
     
  6. fasteddie42

    fasteddie42 Tele-Holic

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    I keep a red llama on to add a hint of grit to a prri. I set it with Volume up, Drive low, the Tone where ever it shaves off the excess high end.

    It's the most transparent pedal I've used yet and isn't even advertised as such.
     
  7. Jsil13

    Jsil13 Tele-Holic

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    I use a Greer Lightspeed as my always on light OD. You might be able to score one used around $100, but it's a great pedal. It stacks nice with my other drives too.
     
  8. Marc Morfei

    Marc Morfei Tele-Afflicted

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    Great suggestions everyone. Now I am busy watching YouTube videos of all these. I actually have a Soul Food lying around that I had forgotten about. Need to dig that up and try it. The extremely loud "click" annoyed me, but I read somewhere there is a switch inside the pedal that might correct that. Will check it out.
     
  9. archtop_fjk

    archtop_fjk Tele-Holic

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    I suppose if the pedal is "always on" you don't have to worry about the "click". :D

    I should also mention that since the gain is set low, the clipping diodes aren't going to be a big factor in the sound which is why I think the Soul Food should be good at low gain applications.
     
  10. bluebirdrad

    bluebirdrad Tele-Meister

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    I don't use the Timmy as always on but I could and be very happy. It's strong point is that it really does not change your tone much at low gain and the eq controls are useful for preserving your tone as you increase the gain. I think the interaction of the eq and gain is what makes this pedal unique and so popular. Honest "clean" boost to light overdrive it excels. Also, the switch that changes the overdrive from an uncompressed gritty sound to a more compressed sustain like a Tubescreamer is almost like having two different pedals. Other overdrive pedals I've tried completely change the tone into a different animal -- that may be what you're looking for and there are many flavors to choose from but I like the tone of my guitar and amp. I've not tried any of those listed above however.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2018
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  11. Rextrade

    Rextrade TDPRI Member

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    Just posted about how much I like this pedal- but if really light gain is ok check out the Warlus Messner. Very transparent with responsive tone controls to tame any bite from your amp. Around 2:00 with P-90s I get a nice and raunchy broken up amp sound, and before 1:00 there is barely any break-up. All the way up and you get sort of like the gain on the OCD on LP mode with the drive most of the way down - like the lowest end of a medium/low gain pedal. My pickups are relatively high output, so you may get significantly less gain on the far end with tele pickups.

    Might be difficult to find one in your price range though.
     
  12. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I like the lowly E-H LPB-1
     
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  13. kafka

    kafka Tele-Afflicted

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    Dunlop EP101 or Chase Tone Secret Preamp. I prefer all of my amps without one, but I also prefer all of my dirt pedals with one. They both get rid of a little of that sizzle, and make things overall smoother and fatter. Probably good for your purposes.

    The Klon/Klones can be good for that, too. I have a KTR and a RYRA. I'm mostly using the RYRA now because it has a little more heat. But they both do that slightly-above-unity-gain thing very well. They kind of sound like you already have an SM57 on the speaker.
     
  14. Daytona.57

    Daytona.57 Tele-Meister

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    I use some of the pedals previously posted, in the following configuration:

    Boss NS-2, Cot 50, Gain Changer, Direct Drive, OCD (boost), Rat, Fat Sandwich (low gain saturation), Red Llama (always on, crunch), Barbershop V2 (always on, end boost), Diamond Compressor, Tuna Melt, Diamond Counterpoint delay, Boss RV-3 delay/reverb, Boss TU-2 into Fender PA 100 and Avatar 2x12 cab.

    I have the settings to low gain, so that I can stack various flexible combinations that are clear and not heavily distorted.

    I utilized TDPRI recommendations, to sort through the myriad of pedals available. YMMV.
     
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  15. MilwMark

    MilwMark Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Totally. My on quibble with the pedal is the low mids are slightly too pronounced for my amps. I love it anyway. But in a "thinner" amp I bet it would be perfect. Just adds juicy gain and really nice character to the clipping. Very quiet noise floor, too.
     
  16. tweedtone

    tweedtone Tele-Afflicted

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    Find a used EQD Speaker Cranker.
     
  17. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Catalinbread 5F6 is primo on all of my bright Fender/Fenderish amps.
     
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  18. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Friend of Leo's

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    I have the Soul Food and the OD-3 and I think I prefer the OD-3. I have also had trouble with the pop when engaging it. I think I even switched it to buffered bypass.

    I will shoot them out again, but right now, the Boss is the Boss!
     
  19. CAAD8N8

    CAAD8N8 Tele-Holic

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    I have had good results with the Emerson custom em drive always on. Goes for about $100 used. Just a volume and gain knob
     
  20. Dixon in Korea

    Dixon in Korea Tele-Meister

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    “The pedal needs to get a warm low end to balance the Vox (but not make that pronounced TS mid-boost sound).”

    Of the pedals you mentioned, I think the Timmy best fits your requirements. Its tone controls are very versatile. I lucked out and got a used one off Reverb for $70. It shouldn’t be too hard to find one for $100.

    I also love the OCD, but it’s more neutral than warm. (I have an OCD clone with a bass boost switch that’s really nice, but I don’t know where you’d find another.)

    I don’t think a Klon clone would do what you want. It doesn’t cut the bass as much as a TS, but it’s definitely not a warm-sounding pedal—more of an upper-mid boost. If you’ve already got too much “sparkle,” a Klon will make it worse.
     
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