Explain to me the benefit of a treble booster

Discussion in 'The Stomp Box' started by ftgjr, Sep 6, 2013.

  1. tedro

    tedro Tele-Afflicted

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    ever use the treble knob on a blackface for volume?
    someone wrote: "almost like a good fuzz"... a sorta of different way to put it. that way and what i wrote = treble booster.

    but actually, a "treble booster" could be like a ts9 or some such. no? treble = mids.
    ?
     
  2. tedro

    tedro Tele-Afflicted

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    like a COT?
    ___
    OP: in a word, the benefit is gain.
     
  3. paulvcarter

    paulvcarter Tele-Holic

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    Treble boosters work best with low output pickups and a vox amp / normal Channel - as someone said earlier it brings the amp alive.

    Brian May is the best example along with Rory Gallagher.

    With today's high out put high gain amps you have to be careful as they may not match well at all.

    Trisonic pickups which Burns guitars use are a perfect match FYI

    One of the guitarists in the Black Crowes uses a strat with trisonics (not Richie)

    If you find one with a variable boost you may like it
     
  4. Paul G.

    Paul G. Friend of Leo's

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    Probably the most famous recording using treble booster would be "Beano". (John Mayall Blues Breakers featuring Eric Clapton).

    Mr. Clapton used a humbucker-equipped Les Paul into a Dallas Rangemaster into a Marshall 50W 2x12 combo.

    When he hits the back pickup, well, you know if you heard the record.

    P.
     
  5. jefrs

    jefrs Doctor of Teleocity

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    No, not like a TS9, not at all. I have a Keeley MOD+TS9.

    The Arion MEQ-7 Graphic EQ, any make Graphic EQ, can do it.
    Starting point - Put the 1.6k to about +10dB, the 800k about +5dB and the rest flat, put the master gain to about +5dB. Fiddle with that.
    An OD, Fuzz or Distortion (of which I have a few) cannot.

    It boosts all frequencies with an extra treble lift.
    Quite what it will do for you depends what you run the TB into, and how much gain you dare give it.
    It is basically a clean boost with a treble lift that gets gritty as you increase the gain. I'm not entirely sure it's the TB that gets gritty or the thing it's driving. Nearest analogy I can think of is running a good tele bridge pickup full-on straight into a nicely cranked up AC30/6(TB) on a good thick 6-ft lead.

    Rory Gallagher often used one (live) before his AC30. Worth a few listens?
     
  6. chunkyluke

    chunkyluke Tele-Meister

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    I can't argue the fact that every one should try one. Try smashing the front end of a Big Muff with a treble booster, tightens it up and makes for a killer tone.

    Someone mentioned before about watching out for modern high gain amps. A big part in treble boosters becoming popular in the first place was to brighten up dark sounding British style amps. So a Marshall of vox with a treble booster can be amazing. But I now have a modern high gain amp , I play a 50w jet city combo. And I love it into this! Both the crunch and OD channels sound great with it, however I have to be careful to make sure i don't set my amps eq too bright
     
  7. jefrs

    jefrs Doctor of Teleocity

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    Lost in translation. What is a COT? :confused:
     
  8. jefrs

    jefrs Doctor of Teleocity

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    Brian May famously copied Rory Gallagher's rig, so the Brian May AC30 effectively has a treble booster built into it.

    OTOH, the BM-AC30 only has a volume knob, so not very versatile. But you get the idea :twisted:
     
  9. chunkyluke

    chunkyluke Tele-Meister

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    Haha yeah, either way both sounded great! Vox and treble booster are inseparable because of the things those two did. But Marc Bolan also used one to great effect as well
     
  10. chunkyluke

    chunkyluke Tele-Meister

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    If I'm not mistaken I think he is referring to the Church OF Tone pedal by Lovepedal?
     
  11. luckett

    luckett Banned

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    It's the low input impedance that gives the rangemaster and some classic fuzzes this characteristic rather than the germanium. A high input impedance germanium circuit wouldn't interact with the pickup in the same way a rangemaster/fuzz does. You can even make a rangemaster/fuzz with silicon trannies and it willl do this if you keep the input impedance low like the Naga Viper mentioned by the OP.

    Lovepedal COT50? It has clipping diodes and high input impedance, so it's not not really doing the same thing as a rangemaster.
     
  12. jefrs

    jefrs Doctor of Teleocity

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    Notes & observations.

    The OC71 germanium PNP of the original is a "small signal audio" type

    I did try a few other old transistors including "medium current audio, small output" and "RF application" types, from memory - OC45 OC78 OC81 OC83 NKT211 NKT217.
    The OC71 was best of the bunch and the OC71 I selected was the best of the few OC71 I had.

    You /can/ use silicon and NPN, I didn't try those.

    What I have noticed is that the Rangemaster I built into the guitar is very quiet (& no it is /not/ a fuzz) whereas with the GEQ adjusted to emulate it, the GEQ is hissy. The Arion GEQ is not hissy unless pushed to extremes.

    The TB I built, to the original Rangemaster circuit, is not a fuzz or an OD, it is a very clean boost with a distinct treble lift, but it does have an insane amount of gain.
    With the gain knob rolled off to perhaps +1dB the treble lift gives it a sparkle that cuts through the mix, without loosening everyone's fillings. Wind it up and the sustain sings.
     
  13. Ed Boyd

    Ed Boyd Tele-Afflicted

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    An interesting poll would be to find out what percentage of treble boost users sit their amps on the floor aimed at their ankles. LOL
     
  14. MilwMark

    MilwMark Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I've been playing around with a Tele - Naga Viper (supposedly CB's take on Rangemaster when all knobs are set full CW) - darker voiced tweed era amp (1960). Brilliant.

    To my ear, in my rig, I'm pretty sure I could NOT replicate this with an EQ pedal. The treble booster certainly:

    1. EQs the signal (in a very, very pleasing way for me) and
    2. does that great volume knob roll-off trick (don't lose and maybe GAIN some sparkle as I roll off - perfect for volume-knob riders)
    3. but it also sounds like it is clipping just the upper mids/highs and leaving the bass and low mids clean. This may be the secret I've been searching for, for a long, long time. All "clipping" pedals tend to lack something for me, or over-accentuate somethign to me. Learned to live with it, but this might be quite the breakthrough for my sound.

    Anyway, I have never achieved 2 or 3 with an EQ. Could be I just don't know how to use them, or could be I'm hearing wrong (though blissfully happy). Just thought I'd add my experience (which comes from zero technical knowledge) to keep this really interesting discussion rolling along.
     
  15. artdecade

    artdecade Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yup, Yup, & YUP, YUP, YUP! :lol:

    You are not going to be able to make an EQ sound like a Rangemaster. Ever. Unless you built that EQ to add grind and spit into certain parts of signal -and- make it perfectly react to picking dynamics. All an EQ will ever do is add/subtract frequencies and gain.
     
  16. MilwMark

    MilwMark Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Oh man, for volume knob riders, this circuit may be the be-all-end-all. Why did it take me so long to find it? Who cares, I'm thrilled anyway. The only thing is you really do need the amp cooking a bit, becuase it doesnt' clip that much. So it can't be my only gain pedal, in case I end playing a backline Twin or something.

    And I'm assuming an amp not lacking in mids is a must? Or has anyone figured out how to make one work in a band mix with a Vibrolux or smaller BF Fender?
     
  17. artdecade

    artdecade Poster Extraordinaire

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    Treble Boosts were built for one specific purpose, although they now serve many more. Classic Vox and Mashall amp will get farty at high volume. This happens when compression sets in. The highs attenuate and low end gets loose. The Treble Boost (not correctly named) was designed to tighten the low end and restore the highs that were lost from the cooking amp. Check out Rory Gallagher's recordings with Taste to hear a RM bearing down on a Vox at full tilt.

    There are not Treble Boosters that have more EQ options (like Analog Mike's), but I find that they get away from the traditional formula.
     
  18. MilwMark

    MilwMark Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Although, a BF Fender also seems to increase bass as the volume rises, and get farty pretty quick, even with the bass run low (2 or so). No loss of highs to my ear though. So the treble boost tightening of bass would still be useful. I'll play around with it. As an "always on" maybe I can get a sound that is not too ice-pick, and the dynamics/clipping structure I've always wanted on a BF Fender too.
     
  19. 11 Gauge

    11 Gauge Doctor of Teleocity

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    BINGO!

    This is why folks thought for years that a germanium device was necessary - some magic to the transistor type itself. IMO not true. Germaniums have more restricted bandwidths versus their silicon counterparts. So not only is there no clipping in the lower regions, but the high end gets nicely rolled off, too.

    Hmm...what other pedal do folks like to use w/the AC30? The Crowther Hotcake. It doesn't have a traditional tone control - just something to adjust the "presence." And along with that, its peculiar circuit only allows clipping at frequencies above the bass & lower mids range (unless you crank it all the way up).

    Along with clipping bass frequencies just not really typically sounding good unless you want something bombastic engaged, controlling which frequencies clip can also mean avoiding something called crossover distortion. It typically gets a little more complicated when designing stuff to that end, and IMO there was no purposeful intention to do that with a treble booster, but it's part of its effect (not adding crossover distortion).

    (If you've ever had a tube amp w/adjustable bias and the bias was on the "very cold" side, you probably got to hear what crossover distortion sounds like)...
     
  20. ac15

    ac15 Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    I don't think you can replicate what a treble booster does by using an EQ pedal either.
     
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