Home (amp tone and effects placement)

>> I use a lot of pedals, and have never really thought much about the
>> order in which I use them (except for having the delay last in the
>> chain).

>This reminds me of an argument that I used to have with another
>guitarist about pedal order. I used to plug into an orange MXR
>Distortion pedal (you know the one - pumpkin colored with an 800 grit
>sandpaper sound) before it went into an MXR 6-band EQ. I really liked
>the edgy-ness that this particular configuration yielded. It was
>bordering on extreme irritation the entire time and I loved it. If I
>switched the units around as suggested by this "so-called" friend, the
>sound was rather flat and uninteresting to my ear. Spiking the EQ curve
>became far less effective when placed in front of the distortion in the
>signal path. I know why now, but I didn't know then - I just liked the
>sound the other way around - still do in fact.

>I say: "play around and use your ears". The tone that you are hearing
>in your head should be the final judge in the matter.

But the catch is, you have to use a different curve than you are used to. Instead of a V curve before distortion, cut the bass and boost the mids. And in addition, you still need an eq after the distortion pedal, if you liked it there before.

The powerful way to "spike the EQ" before a distortion box is the following chain:

o eq (typically, cut the bass and boost the mids)
o distortion
o eq (typically, use a v-shaped curve)

If you are driving the amp into heavy saturation, try putting echo after the amp. As far as effects placement, think of a guitar amp as a distortion box.


>I'm convinced your ideal effects layout using and isolated mic'd speaker cabinet would give the best wet sound preserving the amp/guitar rig's natural tone. If I were recording, I would go for this. But I just do covers, in live situations. I'm to lazy to attempt to build, haul, and set up all the gear you suggest. Maybe Digitech or whoever will hear you and make me a nice *black box*.

>So, striving to keep things simple yet improve my tone, here's what I want to try. Move the time-based effects to the effects loop of my 5150 amp head ( use to run them straight into the amp input, UGH ). Leave my tube screamer and Wah between the guitar and amp input. The problem is the effects loop of a 5150 head has a -10db drop. I want to place a Lexicon Alex in this effects loop. What can I use to boost the signal back up +10db?

I don't know; look through one of the annual guitar-gear buyer's guides put out by Guitar Player or another magazine. And ask in the guitar amp newsgroup.

I agree that your signal chain is better than echo-before-amp'sPreamp, if you are using the guitar amp's built-in distortion. You definitely do not want this chain:

o Distortion stage, in a multieffects processor
o Eq, "
o Time-based effects, "
o Preamp distortion in the amp
o Power-tube and speaker saturation

It's better to put time-based effects after as many clipping-stages as possible; ideally, after the speaker, but at least, after the amp's preamp distortion tubes (that is, in the amp's effect loop, right before the power tubes).

Amptone.com ultra gear-search page

Home (amp tone and effects placement)