There's an industry built around...

What's Hot
2»

Comments

  • ICBMICBM Frets: 32171
    Grocer_Jack said:

    Ok point taken re: amp in a box. But the average listener is irrelevant here, as they are not being marketed to. 
    Actually ewal did specifically ask about the listening audience :).

    I can see it from both sides - there's a big difference between the audience and the player, who is inside the 'feedback loop' of the equipment and so much more sensitive to nuances which change the tone relative to the technique, which are largely lost on the outside listener.

    I've certainly been guilty of over-analysing my gear in the past, but these days I tend to find I sound like me through anything... out of laziness mostly :).
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • ewalewal Frets: 717
    edited July 11
    Interesting to read all the responses and yes I do think how things sound to the listener is critical.

    The reason I posted was because I was listening to a guitar part (Mogwai although artist is irrelevant) and wondering what sort of distortion would give that sound so started to experiment with my pedals. First up I tried my Digitech Carcosa and found I could get pretty close, then I tried my Rat clone and found I could get equally as close. Of course up until this point I'd thought of them as being quite sonically different pedals, and it was only after considering them from a detached listening perspective, trying to emulate someone else's sound, did the thought strike me that there really is not much difference. Especially for this particular application.

    I then watched one of these Reverb videos which claims to demonstrate how to emulate a particular artist's sound using pedals, but is really there to sell you some overly expensive boutique niceness. It was Sonic Youth in this case - they demoed lots of different pedal combinations, but in most cases some very basic pedals would get you there - bog standard overdrive, fuzz and basic modulation. It's the riffs, the layering of the parts, the guitar tunings and playing style that are much more important.

    ETA: One of the pedals that Reverb were using for the Sonic Youth video was a Zvex '59 Sound. As far as I can see that's about 200 quids worth of pedal for some mild gain/clipping... wtf!
    The Scrambler-EE Walk soundcloud experience
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 1reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • ewalewal Frets: 717
    Then there's the evolution (or lack thereof) of a particular favourite guitarists tone over the years. For me, take someone like Swervedriver's Adam Franklin. Over the years he's used Boss, OCDs, Hotcakes, Catalinbread pedals - yet over the years I can't hear any discernible difference in his sound. Always sounds like Adam Franklin playing Swervdriver riffs on a Jazzmaster.
    The Scrambler-EE Walk soundcloud experience
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • soma1975soma1975 Frets: 332
    There’s an episode of TPS where they demo a King of Tone and then the £70 Tone City clone and it sounds 1000% identical in the a/b and they just kinda go ‘well it sort of sounds alright for the money’ and dismiss it and move on. 

    Properly wound me up. 
    My Trade Feedback Thread is here

    Been uploading old tracks I recorded ages ago and hopefully some new noodles here.
    2reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • Matt_McGMatt_McG Frets: 79
    I have built a lot of drive pedals -- for myself, not as a business -- over the past year. And because I'm building them, I can play around with different tone cap/resistor values, and different clipping diode combinations in standard circuit types.

    The differences are real, but I'd absolutely agree that most of those differences aren't particularly worth caring about, and when they are audible they are explicable via simple component choices. The snake oil merchants are taking the piss when they sell their TS with a slightly different low end shelf, or a distortion pedal X with an extra clipping diode in series on one side.

    I have found a few designs that genuinely seem to do something a bit different, in a way that I can clearly hear -- there are interesting designs out there -- but most of the time it's basically what @ICBM wrote above:

    • Light break-up
    • Smooth midrange overdrive
    • Heavy scooped distortion
    • Fuzz



    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • Dave_VaderDave_Vader Frets: 203
    I have a lot of different pedals because I am averse to bending down mid show and having to turn any knobs

    THis is actually true
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 2reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • english_bobenglish_bob Frets: 2319
    soma1975 said:
    There’s an episode of TPS where they demo a King of Tone and then the £70 Tone City clone and it sounds 1000% identical in the a/b and they just kinda go ‘well it sort of sounds alright for the money’ and dismiss it and move on. 

    Properly wound me up. 

     I remember that. As weak as it sounds when you say it in so many words, I do think that:

    What you hear via their microphones and whatever jiggery-pokery Youtube applies to audio isn't necessarily what they heard in the room.

    ICBM's point about being "inside the feedback loop" is valid- two pedals can sound identical but feel completely different.


    But yeah, the two did sound identical on the video.


    Don't talk politics and don't throw stones. Your royal highnesses.

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 1reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • peteripeteri Frets: 823

    I used to buy every OD/Distortion I could, I reckon I've owned most in my life.

    Then I switched to Fractal.

    One of the things which worried me was the lack of models (especially compared to Line 6) in the OD department. But actually it's amazing, I only ever use three 'pedals' - clean boost ('Klone'), TS and occasionally a Fuzz. Nothing else

    Of course this is somewhat artificial because I can change amps instead in the model, but even there - much as I enjoy programming different sounds - if forced I reckon I'd only ever need a maximum of four amps, and could get by on 2-3.

    So realistically - in the real world, clean boost, TS boost, Fuzz, two channel amp - sorted! It's amazing to say aloud

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • crunchmancrunchman Frets: 3767

    I've built myself a few pedals.  There are differences, but they aren't huge.

    I've a TS style build that's a bit hybrid between a TS and the Fulltone FD/Boss SD1 circuit.

    I did tweak the frequency where it starts to attenuate the low end.  I wanted that TS mid hump that the FD2 didn't quite have, but not as pronounced as the TS, so I tweaked a couple of components to set that frequency about halfway between the two.  It makes a minor difference, but it's not night and day.  I'd quite happily use a TS or a Fulldrive if that was what was available.  To be honest, if I'd had a Fulldrive in a smaller box without the boost side doubling the footprint, I'd have never bothered to build this pedal.

    Likewise with the clipping.  When I built it, I had all kinds of ideas about switchable diodes and symmetrical/asymmetrical clipping.  Once I built it, I started out with the standard TS diodes and it sounded great.  I then put an extra diode in one side to get asymmetrical clipping.  I think I marginally prefer it, but I wouldn't be confident I could pick it out in a blind test.  The differences are small.  The pedal sounded great that way, so I just left it as it was and didn't bother with all the switchable diode stuff.

    For me, the biggest difference between a lot of these pedals is the EQ voicing rather than the clipping.  Something with a pronounced mid hump like a TS will sound a bit different from something flatter sounding like an OCD.

    Some of them do respond differently to picking dynamics.  Some pedals are very compressed and don't change much with how you pick, but others can be a lot more sensitive to dynamics.  Set with the gain low, an OCD on 18V, can go from sounding clean when picked gently, to sounding quite driven when you pick hard.

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • WazmeisterWazmeister Frets: 3856
    There was a thread a few years ago on TGP basically stating that nearly all ODs are the same... very intersting, as I have felt that many time myself.

    Our 'market' is unique in that originally, YouTube videos had neutral videos giving good opinion. A huge industry has nice spawned, and naturally things have changed...

    I really miss buying pedals, especially ODs, but the hype is not missed.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • ICBMICBM Frets: 32171
    soma1975 said:
    There’s an episode of TPS where they demo a King of Tone and then the £70 Tone City clone and it sounds 1000% identical in the a/b and they just kinda go ‘well it sort of sounds alright for the money’ and dismiss it and move on. 

    Properly wound me up. 
    Considering the King Of Tone is essentially a copy of a £70 Marshall Bluesbreaker pedal (or strictly speaking two of them) that's not very surprising.

    What winds me up - and this is not aimed only at the King Of Tone - is when a pedal which sounds OK but nothing outstanding into a clean amp is justified by "yes, but you can't judge it like that - it sounds amazing into a cooking valve amp at gig volume." (Usually with the implication that if you don't appreciate that, you're a 'bedroom player'.) Well of course it does! ...the clue is in the cooking valve amp at gig volume bit :). *Any* pedal that adds a bit of dirt and level is going to sound pretty good going into an already good-sounding amp which is already overdriven and compressed - what you're hearing is mostly the amp, not the pedal.

    A £30 Chinese Tube Screamer copy sounds great into a cooking valve amp at gig volume...
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 12reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • breezytelebreezytele Frets: 12
    Well , variations in eq aside they all seem the same to me. 
    I should say,did  seem; 
    The new origin effects drive is very different. It behaves like an overdriven amp, sustain, sensitivity etc
    and apart from sounding glorious, it can achieve this into an amp at modest volume
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • TeetonetalTeetonetal Frets: 5931
    Well , variations in eq aside they all seem the same to me. 
    I should say,did  seem; 
    The new origin effects drive is very different. It behaves like an overdriven amp, sustain, sensitivity etc
    and apart from sounding glorious, it can achieve this into an amp at modest volume
    This is the maddening thing. There are pedals that are glorious. Genuine innovation.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • Dave_McDave_Mc Frets: 1051
    edited July 18
    This is one of the hardest things for me to understand about pedals and demos - quite why someone can't just say what something is without 25 minutes of fluff is ridicolours.

    This is a modification of a TS, this is a modification of a Big Muff, etc. etc.
    I could be wrong, but there seems to be some kind of (misplaced, IMO) loyalty to the manufacturers, rather than the players (or maybe they're just scared of being sued). They used to use similar logic for why reviews all got 4 stars in the guitar magazines (and they never pointed out when something was a clone there, either).

    One of the reasons why I stopped buying and reading the magazines...

    ICBM said:
    soma1975 said:
    There’s an episode of TPS where they demo a King of Tone and then the £70 Tone City clone and it sounds 1000% identical in the a/b and they just kinda go ‘well it sort of sounds alright for the money’ and dismiss it and move on. 

    Properly wound me up. 
    Considering the King Of Tone is essentially a copy of a £70 Marshall Bluesbreaker pedal (or strictly speaking two of them) that's not very surprising.

    What winds me up - and this is not aimed only at the King Of Tone - is when a pedal which sounds OK but nothing outstanding into a clean amp is justified by "yes, but you can't judge it like that - it sounds amazing into a cooking valve amp at gig volume." (Usually with the implication that if you don't appreciate that, you're a 'bedroom player'.) Well of course it does! ...the clue is in the cooking valve amp at gig volume bit :). *Any* pedal that adds a bit of dirt and level is going to sound pretty good going into an already good-sounding amp which is already overdriven and compressed - what you're hearing is mostly the amp, not the pedal.

    A £30 Chinese Tube Screamer copy sounds great into a cooking valve amp at gig volume...
    Agreed. I remember the guy in the shop said something similar to me when I tried the klon centaur...

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • impmannimpmann Frets: 7353
    ICBM said:
    soma1975 said:
    There’s an episode of TPS where they demo a King of Tone and then the £70 Tone City clone and it sounds 1000% identical in the a/b and they just kinda go ‘well it sort of sounds alright for the money’ and dismiss it and move on. 

    Properly wound me up. 
    Considering the King Of Tone is essentially a copy of a £70 Marshall Bluesbreaker pedal (or strictly speaking two of them) that's not very surprising.

    What winds me up - and this is not aimed only at the King Of Tone - is when a pedal which sounds OK but nothing outstanding into a clean amp is justified by "yes, but you can't judge it like that - it sounds amazing into a cooking valve amp at gig volume." (Usually with the implication that if you don't appreciate that, you're a 'bedroom player'.) Well of course it does! ...the clue is in the cooking valve amp at gig volume bit :). *Any* pedal that adds a bit of dirt and level is going to sound pretty good going into an already good-sounding amp which is already overdriven and compressed - what you're hearing is mostly the amp, not the pedal.

    A £30 Chinese Tube Screamer copy sounds great into a cooking valve amp at gig volume...
    Like the absolute dog-shit sounding Boss DS-1, you mean? Each time I've played one its sounded the same to my ears... dog shit. I say that, and I get lots of folk telling me that I "don't know how to dial it in" or I need to "hear it through a cooking amp".

    The first of those statements is incredibly condescending, and I've seen it a few times from a few people. It makes the assumption that the other party is incapable of turning knobs and using their ears... in this case just three of them. Nope, no matter how I turn those three controls it does not enhance the sound of my guitar... far from it.

    The second of those, as you rightly say makes the implication of being a bedroom player - as though that is some kind of negative. A distortion pedal shouldn't "need" an already distorted amp to sound good - indeed there are many examples of them that don't and some of them share similar electronic architecture. As you rightly say, any already overdriven amp will compress more and that compression/gain squash will remove any nasty fizzy scratchiness from the output of the pedal.

    A lot of these things are subjective and dependant on your own technique - I detest the DS-1, yet I know folks that love it. Steve Rothery manages to make it sound epic, for example. Likewise, I think TS-9s are the spawn of satan (muddly, middly things) but then - I don't need to add mids, an awful lot of folks do for their solo sound.

    The booteek vs factory thing drives me potty - there was a TPS where Dan "needed" a new Flanger and they spent over an hour blathering about how nothing quite sounds like the battered Mistress he has used for years. They compared it to the Mooer Elec Lady and said it lacked the top end of the EH... erm... maybe not, but its a £40 pedal that is 98% of the sound of a £400-500 unit without the shit noise artifacts, stupid power requirements issue AND the volume drop. They then mention that the EH sits in a volume boosted loop... the Mooer doesn't... And for the record... the Mooer sounds flippin amazing.



    Never Ever Bloody Anything Ever.

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • UnclePsychosisUnclePsychosis Frets: 5155
    I certainly agree that there's a lot of total bullshit out there - the vertex / freakish blues stuff for example just reinforces my opinion that a lot of people hear with their eyes and their wallets.

    I think that's probably why my two favourite manufacturers are Boss and EQD. Boss do the simple stuff really well, in a great form factor and at a sensible price. EQD do lots of mad stuff that others don't. I'm fucked if I'm spending hundreds on a tweaked tubescreamer. 

    That's not to say that there aren't other companies out there doing genuinely innovative, worthwhile stuff. If *nobody* was doing anything new then the whole industry would die. 
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
Sign In or Register to comment.