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Here is a forum for everything between the guitar (here) and the amp (there). If you want to know about cables, effects pedals, multieffects, noisegates, line drivers, phasers, distortion post your questions in here.
Crow
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Re: EFFECT CHAINS where to put what...

Post by Crow » February 23rd, 2010, 7:35 am

I'm re-examining my pedalboard these days, so this thread is welcome.

Eight years ago I took a few days to push my pedals around, and the best-sounding configuration went like this: guitar > DeArmond volume pedal > Ibanez TX9DX Turbo Tube Screamer > MXR Distortion Plus > In-Line Effects XE601 Extra Distortion > Electro-Harmonix Small Stone Phase Shifter > Vox/Thomas Organ Cry Baby > MXR Analog Delay > amp. That's how it's been ever since, and i've seen no reason to change anything. Today I'm considering compression & clean boost, and possibly a parallel array for the distortions, as I rarely have more than one fuzzbox on at once.

But then, I rarely use any of the pedals at all. I have a bad attitude toward stomp boxes. I figure if you need a charisma box to make your guitar/amp combination sound good, something's wrong. But then, I'm not a working pro at present. Not having to conjure SRV or ZZ night after night is a blessing. I know the sound I like -- neck-position single-coils into 6V6s -- and I don't need to mess with it much.

The flip side of course is that pedals give you innumerable sonic options & room for experimentation & discovery. And I respectfully disagree that "it is not a matter of what one likes." Creativity does not respect rules of any kind. If it did, we would not tolerate distorted guitar tones, would we?
"You can't write a chord ugly enough to say what you want to say sometimes, so you have to rely on a giraffe filled with whipped cream." - Frank Zappa

darkhorse
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Post by darkhorse » February 25th, 2010, 2:38 am

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Post by darkhorse » February 25th, 2010, 2:47 am

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Post by darkhorse » February 25th, 2010, 2:49 am

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Post by darkhorse » February 25th, 2010, 3:09 am

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Re: EFFECT CHAINS where to put what...

Post by slejhamer » February 25th, 2010, 6:48 am

My only knock on the Sparkle Drive it that it's too smooth! In the VS shootout, I really liked the way the Klon sounded, and the VS 808 sounded more like the Klon than a typical tubescreamer type. I know, the circuits are similar ... but these seemed to have the mid-bump set a little lower. To my ears. :lol:

Back on topic: compressor before or after wah? I've always been told to put it before. Does it matter much? With a pedal like the VS Route 66, with OD and compression, the compressor would be after the wah. Any pros/cons of that?
"Everybody got to elevate from the norm."

Crow
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Re: EFFECT CHAINS where to put what...

Post by Crow » February 25th, 2010, 8:49 am

darkhorse wrote:...some people can have realy bad tastes. They all believe their wives are pretty and their kids smart.
Oh boy, do I get that. But "taste" is a difficult topic, esp. when we're talking about pop music. If a pedal generates a top-40 hit, it gets "tasteful" in a hurry. Again, not being a working pro, I don't have to deal with such lapses of taste.
Say Crow, why the volume pedal up front? I've seen most of them in the end or in the loop to control the overall level. Are you using it to drive the line?
You know, I don't know where I picked up the idea that the volume pedal belongs up front. With noisy vintage pedals like mine, it probably makes a lot more sense at the end. I'll try it. Thanks!
"You can't write a chord ugly enough to say what you want to say sometimes, so you have to rely on a giraffe filled with whipped cream." - Frank Zappa

darkhorse
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Post by darkhorse » February 25th, 2010, 12:01 pm

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Crow
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Re: EFFECT CHAINS where to put what...

Post by Crow » February 25th, 2010, 9:57 pm

darkhorse wrote:Finally, guitar website with some traffic. I hope a lot of this will be of some use to all ranges of players out there. I have been down the road and around the mountain a good many years but my love and search for the "tone of the Gods" is ever present and I get ideas from all levels of players to check out and try.
Yes! There is so much room for discussion on this, and so little discussion online. You have the pedal-magic angle, I'm more of a straight-into-the-amp guy, and where else are we going to connect? and who is going to benefit from the connection?
I agree with Crow that the issue of poppy music might bring us any weird tone or apparent sound blasphemy by misplacing pedals but somehow having to use the effect in your chain all the time to duplicate that recorded tone is perhaps a pain. To me it's an immature level of playing like wide strumming because one has no technique or finese of playing.
Well, "Satisfaction" put the distortion pedal into a whole lot of chains & was probably considered "immature" at the time. That's my point. (Keith would make the point differently, I suspect.)
The problem with boxes is also some things do not like other things no matter if it's sonically kosher.
Yes, yes, yes! And this is part of the reason why the instrument interests me so much. I won't go on about it here, but... yeah!
... those old fuzz pedals have really terrible no bypass and no line through buffer stage. A good isolator loop is essential for them unless you want to modify them.
I dropped a "true bypass" switch into my vintage Thomas Organ wah, but the value was lost on me -- just don't use the pedals that much. Maybe I should just sell them, eh? :D
"You can't write a chord ugly enough to say what you want to say sometimes, so you have to rely on a giraffe filled with whipped cream." - Frank Zappa

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Post by darkhorse » February 26th, 2010, 9:52 pm

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Post by darkhorse » February 28th, 2010, 12:08 pm

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Re: EFFECT CHAINS where to put what...

Post by BudaRhythmic » March 1st, 2010, 8:20 am

This thread makes me want to get rid of my Boss ME-20 and buy a bunch of individual pedals... I need to experiment with a lot of this myself before I can give any opinions on the matter. The ME-20 doesn't really give me the right sound I want, at least with the distortion options, and I've fiddled with it for a while now. I wonder if this is because my solid state Line 6 just can't possibly give me the tone I want or simply because I need to fiddle more with the knobs?

I also just realized that there's no way for me to stick to the 'proper chain' if I want to amp my pedals distortion - it doesnt have send or recieve jacks - so i could only connect it by going through the effects loop. What's the big deal with running the distortion from the multi after the pre-amp, so long as you aren't using the amp's overdrive already? My Line 6 doesn't have an effects loop so I've never really had to deal with one, but I have a new Carvin Belair on the way which DOES have an effects loop, so I figure I should start learning about how to use it right haha.

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Post by darkhorse » March 1st, 2010, 11:33 pm

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BudaRhythmic
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Re: EFFECT CHAINS where to put what...

Post by BudaRhythmic » March 2nd, 2010, 9:05 am

darkhorse wrote: I in no way would suggest the Boss unit or any other is not good, but the more advanced you become the more you will crave the ability complexity individual boxes can give you. The problem is, which ones to get, and that is the $64K problem.
I agree completely with this statement. I don't think my ME-20 is bad, per se, but I feel like I'm ready to start investing in individual effects so I can customize my sound even more than I ever could.

I don't plan on using my solid state Line 6 once my Carvin Belair 2x12 tube comes in, which has that awesome clean sound you spoke of. But like you said now I gotta decide which pedals I truly want, and only after I acquire these can I really delve into the search for the 'holy grail' of tones lol.

BTW my Line 6 had some really good effects built in to the amp, but I can't stand that. I gig, and a box is much more convenient than having to adjust the amp knobs mid-set. My multi's distortion just can't get the same tone that the amps built in fx have though, which is why I wanted to upgrade to a tube.
darkhorse wrote:Another female canine I have about even the best boxes is that I love to loop some effects in the amp loop and keep others up front.
This is the exact reason I want individual boxes and not my multi anymore. If I go from my multi into the amp in thatn I'm going against the things I learned from this thread and other chain suggestions. From how I understood it, if you have a multi, the only reason you'd want to go from the mutli to the preamp is if you have a send-recieve loop on it as well, so you'd go:
guitar->multi->preamp->amp send->multi receive-> multi send-> amp receive-> power amp

If I do this I' can amplify the distortion through the preamp and modulate in the effects loop, or at least according to what I read. Not 100% on how it does this, I'm still one of those 'younger guys' you mentioned, and I'm just breaching th tip of the iceberg on this whole subject, so I have a lot to learn and apologize if anything I say is completely wrong lol.
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kingpatzer
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Re: EFFECT CHAINS where to put what...

Post by kingpatzer » March 2nd, 2010, 9:12 am

I play jazz, so my setup is very minimalist. But it goes:

Guitar -> eq -> tube screamer -> chorus -> eq -> amp

I've just added the tube screamer, so I put a second eq in just to see if I needed it. I'm not sure I do, so it might come out.
"The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side." -- HST

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