BYOC Silver Pony (Klon Clone)

Discussion in 'The Stomp Box' started by Tinman46, Jul 25, 2014.

  1. duhvoodooman

    duhvoodooman TDPRI Member

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    I don't think the point of the demo is to impress anyone with how great the Silver Pony sounds--it's to show how close it sounds to a Klon across a range of settings. And on that basis, I think the demo succeeds quite well.
     
  2. BassBoss

    BassBoss TDPRI Member

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    I have tested a boss SD-1 and a tube screamer. The tube screamer (a TS10) DID NOT have asymmetrical clipping. It produced only odd harmonics that were relevant. The even harmonics on the SD-1 on the other hand were so far below the odd ones that I would definitely call it a gimmick. I think I still have the clips if you are interested.

    Also it's my understanding tube screamer combines the driven/filtered signal with the dry one. The filters are of course analog nonlinear minimum phase filters so when combined you are going to have a EQ curve that's not a simple combinations of the two (since the phase difference has to be accounted for). Maybe the resultant EQ/phase shift is confused with the asymmetric clipping, because with EQ you can turn a waveform to be more or less symmetric (if it has the harmonic contents to start with - although even that's not necessary depending on the interpretation). Filter is never going to produce any harmonics and can't therefore be considered a clipper. In other words, there is no asymmetric clipping in a TS (and even the SD-1 is kinda "Boss level of marketing"). This all also means that the clipped sine waveform too contains only odd harmonics. That might not be immediately obvious looking at the picture (although it kinda is) but it is the case, the harmonics just don't all have the same phases. Putting a square through allpass filter yields the same symmetry I think it's called anti-periodic, there is no difference in tone (our ears don't work like that).

    Guitar is of course wide band signal, so symmetric clipping is going to produce both even and odd harmonics relative to the guitar signal. And if you play two notes together there are also going to be unrelated harmonics.

    I wonder if these pedals filter DC offset at the input. If they don't you can tune the drive to be as symmetric/asymmetric as you want. Wait, of course they do, because the HP is before the clipping... too bad. But someone could probably mod them for good.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2014
  3. 11 Gauge

    11 Gauge Doctor of Teleocity

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    I don't need clips - I would like to see your waveform captures.

    And I don't really care about even or odd order harmonics - I just want to see the sinewaves on the output from your TS.

    If they look like this (bottom is OUTPUT):

    [​IMG]

    Then I agree - completely symmetrical.

    But - if they look like this (again - bottom is OUTPUT):

    [​IMG]

    ...there's no way I could call that symmetrical clipping.

    ALL TS models have the clipping diodes and the high pass filter in the inverted input. Your signal goes thru the non-inverting input. This means that both are 'summed' on the output. Even if you have what amounts to symmetrical clipping with the diodes themselves, the mixing of the clipped and unclipped signals are asymmetrical because there is a phase shift that occurs.

    Prior to the TS, it was 'standard design' to put both the signal and clipping thru the inverted input:

    [​IMG]

    ...When this is done, there is no way the phase shift can occur - there is no provision for it. There is no mixing of two signals via one taking a path thru the non-inverting input (which is represented as connecting to ground in the image above).

    I think you are getting hung up on the 'action of the clipping diodes themselves, in isolation.' The point is that there's more going on than just clipping the signal with the diodes.

    What you have with ANY TS is a SUMMING of TWO signals. One is clipped and run thru a high pass filter. The other is not altered. When this is done, it makes it impossible (literally) to have a symmetrical waveform on the output, which the following web page makes clear:


    The phase shift aspect is CRITICALLY important. It's actually what causes for a whole mess of problems with boosters and even 'gainstaging' in guitar amps that are purposefully meant to be driven into distortion. The phase shift - as is indicated in its very name - can cause those swooshy sort of 'wasp wing sounds' when it's very overt. It doesn't necessarily have to be an audible representation of harmonic content.

    ...The elimination of phase shift (or correction for it) is actually a necessary evil for audio reproduction where you DON'T want any changes from the original signal. Something like the BBE Sonic Maximizer actually (and literally) processes signals at different frequencies and REMOVES any phase shifts - it essentially 're-aligns' the sonic content so that everything is in phase - bass/mid/treble, and freq's in between.

    So - whenever you see something like this:

    [​IMG]

    (WITH a cap in series with R1)

    ...You will always have phase shift with a pair of summed signals, and the output will always be asymmetrical.

    So - you need something 'conventional' like this:

    [​IMG]

    ...To eliminate the phase shift. The reason should be obvious - there's only one path that the signal can take.

    I apologize if it's all counter-intuitive, and a bit of a 'tech-geek mess.' This is especially in light of us being beat over the head with most discussions of just the diodes themselves, in isolation. And there's much more being discussed here.

    ...Relative to the Klon/Silver Pony/etc. is the fact that they all have a pair of simple clipping diodes shunted to ground on the op amp's output. So everything that occurs with a TS or similar OD are excluded from being a characteristic of the Klon/Distortion +/OCD/Rat/DOD OD 250/DS-1/etc.
     
  4. BassBoss

    BassBoss TDPRI Member

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    Analog equalizers always introduce phase shift, no need to combine two signals (I just wanted to point out that combining the tones isn't straight up 1+1). There is no way to fix the phase shift besides inverting the signal in time and then feeding it into the EQ circuit backwards to attain linear phase characteristics. Symmetry of a waveform is of course all about phase.

    TS doesn't have asymmetrical clipping, it has symmetrical clipping with phase shift. Asymmetrical clipping always produces even harmonics. Asymmetry of the final waveform doesn't mean that the clipping was asymmetric. Also if you would eliminate the phase shift caused by the circuit the result would be a symmetric waveform. The asymmetry is irrelevant in the TS sound. Exactly like passing a square wave through all-pass is irrelevant in regards to the sound.


    And yes I am hung up on the action of the diodes themselves, because fundamentally that is what changes the sound, not the asymmetry caused by the phase shift (you could do the equalization with linear phase EQ and the result would be very similar soundwise - although not in a case where the eq'd signal is combined with the dry one). Asymmetrical clipping means actual asymmetry in the clipping function/waveshaper (IE. top and bottom halves are clipped differently), not merely that the result is asymmetric. The clipping in a TS is very symmetric.


    Simply put the SD-1 introduces very light even harmonics, while the TS doesn't. That's really what the asymmetric/symmetric clipping is about and not whether the resulting waveform is symmetric or not. Any EQ can make a waveform asymmetric and there is no clipping involved in such thing (well maybe there is, but that's a other story).
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2014
  5. 11 Gauge

    11 Gauge Doctor of Teleocity

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    Please back this up beyond a simple statement of claiming it to be the case.

    I think it's far easier to demonstrate that something is not relevant if it doesn't exist, as opposed to claiming it's irrelevant if it does indeed exist.

    Oftentimes, irrelevant is rather strong of a term, anyway. I think negligible - if such is the case - tends to fit better, at least for the sake of conversation.

    Much of what makes the Echoplex preamp tend to 'sound good' as an enhancer has to do with time constant/phase shift issues as well. Most people (e.g. those with audio design expertise) tend to overlook this when taking a cursory glance at the design.

    Unless you can demonstrate beyond a reasonable doubt, I don't think a claim of irrelevant can be made (with all due respect).

    And - if such asymmetry were irrelevant, there really would have been little need to utilize the non-inverting input - the overall circuit could have been kept more simple in many instances. It certainly works for non-guitar audio quite well. So why bother?
     
  6. BassBoss

    BassBoss TDPRI Member

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    Well maybe "Irrelevant" is a bit too strong of a word. It is certainly relevant if you are manipulating the signal further with an amp. But my point was that we can't hear the phase shift on a continuous signal (we can detect a phase difference in left/right ear though). Thus irrelevant in regards to the SOUND of it.

    It's not irrelevant if any further processing is done or if the signal is combined with parallel signal. Not saying that at all. Again, it's kinda irrelevant to what we hear coming straight from the output. Throw an allpass filter on a signal with normal amount of phase shift and you probably won't be able to tell the difference. Similarly if you correct the phase of that TS waveform to be 0phase, you won't be able to tell the difference - that was my meaning.

    I have to admit that I know nothing about the actual components of analog electronics. What does this non-inverting input do? And if you don't mind, does the negative feedback network on the TS involve real feedback or not? Always wondered about that.
     
  7. gtrguru

    gtrguru Friend of Leo's

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    So I was building my pedal this weekend. ..oh wait were we talking about something else?
     
  8. 11 Gauge

    11 Gauge Doctor of Teleocity

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    Unfortunately, this discussion (about the Silver Pony/Klones/etc.) has gotten derailed, so asymmetrical soft clipping via different op amp inputs will have to be tabled. However, you can always go through and read the entire link that I provided.

    Yeah - into the weeds we've gone. Apologies for that. :oops:

    While soft clipping with OD pedals is interesting to discuss (and is something that obviously we hope to get from the Silver Pony/Klon Centaur/Klones/etc.), the phenomenon that occurs with a TS/SD-1/etc. doesn't apply here.

    So - back on topic. How did your build go? :?:
     
  9. stax

    stax Tele-Afflicted

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    I have toyed with the idea of some kind of Klon build but i think I've only ever heard one youtube vid that I liked and I can't find that anymore.
    I have a couple of modded boss od's. a 80's Rat and several boosts and od's I have built (Orman mini boost, Marshall Bluesbreaker, SHOD, SHO, Zen and halfway through a Morley JD10) and although I'm into low gain stuff I just don't see what the fuss is about with the Klon but if there are any decent vids of how they sound like I'd like to hear them as I've a box full of components and parts and am running out of ideas for builds.
     
  10. 11 Gauge

    11 Gauge Doctor of Teleocity

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    This is the 'leap of faith part' for anyone building a Klone, IMO.

    Even w/the excellent BYOC video doing an A/B between an actual KC and the Silver Pony - clearly demonstrating very little audible differences, the video doesn't reveal anything remotely spectacular about a Klon, IMO.

    Most if not all KC/Klone/Silver Pony/Soul Food/etc. videos are likely to be the same.

    If we take what Bill Finnegan said to be true, the KC R&D was very specific to BF/SF Fenders, and using them at stage volume. IMO, it almost makes it more of a guitar tech's tool, or sound engineer's tool. The whole idea is just to get an already 'alive' sounding amp to 'sound a bit more alive,' which I know is horrible paraphrasing.

    ...But point being - this is the whole crux of it. It's not unlike Paul C's "vision" when doing the "R&D" (I think Paul would just sort of call it a 'design progression') with the Tim & Timmy. That OD was specifically designed to work with Paul's rig of choice - a Strat and (IIRC) a 50 watt Marshall head (I'm guessing something like a 1987, or 'plexi-type' of some sort) into a 2X12 cabinet.

    So both of these things are stage tools, and were really never intended to 'reveal their greatness' in these videos. And using something other than a BF/SF Fender for the Klon, and something other than a Strat + 50 watt Marshall with the Tim(my), and you've already steered things away from the 'design scope,' and have put yourself into uncharted waters.

    So, for the DIY'er, it really constitutes a leap of faith. I personally try to focus on the building experience as opposed to the final results. I don't want to really suggest or advocate that as some kind of 'mantra' for others to follow, though. Let's just say that 95% of the time, I don't find the finished product to be very appealing for me. The last one that really left me underwhelmed was a scratchbuilt SFT. I went into that one knowing I would be tweaking stuff straight away, otherwise just throw some bones to Catalinbread. But - I was intrigued by the unorthodox fuzz like qualities in a video. The finished (and significantly altered) product ended up having a fuzztone that IMO was really just sort of a novelty - certainly not worth the trouble of building up something with NINE jFET transistors in it. :eek:

    ...So - I chalk it up to the experience. In the process, I also figured out just how small of a layout you can cram 9 transistors into. :eek:

    I also just end up pulling the guts out of these projects, and throwing them in a big coffee can. That way, I have a sort of 'recycler's repository' if I want to give something a go somewhere down the line. Well, at least until I start picking the PCB's apart. :twisted:

    Unfortunately, I don't think there's any kind of iron-clad advice that can be given for building ______ pedal. JMO.
     
  11. stax

    stax Tele-Afflicted

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    Well perhaps I'll give it a go, I have a silverface pro reverb that I've never been happy with and seldom use even after putting in a new AB 763 Hoffman board and a couple of greenbacks it still sounded the same so maybe something that has been designed specifically for that type of amp could be a future project.
     
  12. 11 Gauge

    11 Gauge Doctor of Teleocity

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    Sounds like it! Or at least one more 'check in the pros column vs the cons column.' :p

    While I also personally have no desire for it, I'll probably build another Klone just to hear if there's anything special about the 'Silver Pony specific' recipe. Even though they (BYOC) have yet to degoop a gold horsie, I can't help but come to the realization that (despite what he said, or maybe thought he meant) Bill Finnegan did indeed change component values.

    ...Sometimes it's just kind of fun to look into these things, just for the sake of being exposed to them. Since the Klon/Klone/Silver Pony is just a 3 knob build, it makes it sort of an easier choice over a lot of these projects with 4/5/6+ knobs and 1/2/3+ toggles, and 2 footswitches, etc...
     
  13. mrboson

    mrboson Tele-Afflicted

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    Hearing this kind of statement from the more seasoned builders really helps me feel a lot better :cool:

    I'm still pretty new to this (only four pedals so far - but I can say each has been from scratch based just on schematics!). I have to say it has been the experience of the process I have enjoyed most from each, rather than being blown away by the end result. Except for my Rat. I knew what I was going to get at the end, and it turned out just like it was supposed to.

    But all 4 I have built (buffer, squeezer, Dr. Quack, Rat) are on my board and I use them right along with the store bought ones. My wife doesn't get it though. She sees how into it I am during the build, then comes to watch my reaction when it is done and I try it out "for real" with the rest of the signal chain. My reaction is usually pretty muted, and she asks, "Don't you like it?" And I say, "Yeah it's OK." Build over. Excitement over. I then need to build another one. (I am in between now, forced to work on other unfinished projects :mad:).

    But to get back on thread topic. I want to build this Silver Pony. I have never even seen a Klon or Klone (but hey, my buffer is the Klon's buffer!). I just want to do it but in this case, the BYOC version. A scratch build looks to be above my pay grade at this point.
     
  14. Tinman46

    Tinman46 Tele-Meister

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    I'm still waiting for my Canadian BYOC supplier to get some in stock. They've been in the shipping void for a while now. Oh well, I have a BYOC Delay that needs assembly, I guess it could scratch my soldering itch for now.:D
     
  15. MilwMark

    MilwMark Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    The more I play mine, the more I find apparent differences from my other Klone. Again, not night and day kind of differences. Just a bit easier to dial in the Pony and more useful sounds across the taper of the treble pot. My other Klone remains a great pedal but the Pony wins out. Maybe just from the cognitive dissonance of running the treble pot at around 9-10 o'clock on the old one and not being able to believe that was "unity-treble" with my clean signal. And the low mids. I'd swear there's some more low mids in the Pony, at just the right "authority without mud" frequency.
     
  16. Tinman46

    Tinman46 Tele-Meister

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    My order just went in. Looking forward to this one.
     
  17. 11 Gauge

    11 Gauge Doctor of Teleocity

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    I really liked reading that.

    It emphasizes what I try to highlight on many occasions - what is (hopefully) deliberate design that is hardwired.

    And it's something that doesn't hold up to the mentality of those who say "I can take X number of drive boxes and dial them all in to sound similar," kind of 'semi-horse puckey'ish' thing that I hear far too often. I'm not saying anyone is lying, but that it makes for a situation where you might pass on gear that really hits the sweet spot.

    ...To be clear - I'm not talking about 'grail chasing,' or 'the elusive final 5%,' as that is all mostly The Grand Fable, AFAIC. But I do have more than a few pieces of gear that 'squarely hit the sweet spot.' IMO, they are worth a little extra trouble or experimentation to find out about.

    It's not that different from all the "it's a fine line between ______" sayings. And IMO, it can be as hard for someone to design in a crude drive box as trying to build a ship in a bottle. ;)

    ...."I hope my pony knows the way back home"... :lol:
     
  18. JoeNeri

    JoeNeri Friend of Leo's

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    I don't disagree with much of your post, but I truly believe that we sometimes hear what we want and/or expect to hear with respect to overdrive pedals.

    I don't dispute that some/many od pedals do indeed have a sweet spot (I rarely change the pedal settings on my own pedal board, which means I must like the "sweet" sound I'm getting from those settings). But I do believe (in fact know, from my own direct experience) that "X number of drive boxes" can indeed be tweaked to generate virtually identical tones. The now famous Bad Monkey vs. Klon video is a good example of this.
     
  19. Greg.Coal

    Greg.Coal Tele-Afflicted

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    It is true. A friend of mine has an original Klon, bought direct from the builder a long time ago. At the time, you had to talk to him on the phone and he asked my friend about his guitars and his main amp. His amp was/is a Mesa and he wanted to know which model and talked to him about his playing and he agreed to sell him one.

    It's a great pedal, by the way,
    Greg
     
  20. MilwMark

    MilwMark Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I don't disagree with much of your post. And I'm in the camp that tends to dial everything in to sound like me. Which begs the question why I spent so much time trying out different drive boxes? (Oh well, it was fun.)

    But the BM v. Klon thing to me really only shows at one specific setting, you can get them to sound similar. I'd venture that the BM (which is just a TS to me for this purpose) sound relative different over at least 60% of their knob travel, and feel different over 85+% of their knob travel. That's just my take based on having had a TS (nothing fancy, just an 808 reissue) and a Klone simultaneously.

    My point - I agree with both of you. Time to run for office, I guess.
     
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