Edington

Last Son of The Miracle
If I wanted to build a pedalboard and needed to run a delay through the fx loop and other pedals through the front of the amp, how would this be done? As I realised yesterday while testing the MXR delay, it’s fine in front of the amp for clean sounds but doesn’t work with amp distortion because the delay repeats get distorted and it turns into a mess.

This is exactly how I ended up discovering my amp's effects loop, same pedal and same problem with the repeats distorting. The remedy is the "four cable method". First cable goes from the effects loop's Send to the delay pedal's input, second one goes from the output to the Return. Third cable goes from your guitar into whatever pedal(s) you have in front of the amp, fourth and final cable goes from that pedal's/chain's output to the amplifier's input.
 

Maturin

Sköldpadda
Just want to add a few things to the discussion.

1) Yes, order of effects has a few starting rules which @Dick Brucinson pointed out, but there are no hard rules. Often you will find players running phaser like a filter effect before dirt. I use mine like that and it's set way low, so that the only time you will hear it's on is if you turn it off... It fattens up the sound and adds just a shimmer of barely audible sweep.

2) If you get the dirt from the amp, yes you would probably want the delay in the FX loop. I run my dirt from a combination of OD and distortion pedals and don't need to use the FX loop because of that. Delay is still after the dirt stages. You can run it before as well. Usually the repeats will be way louder and stand out more.

3) Depending on what sound you're after, I would really recommend trying a digital delay instead of an analog. More crisp, clear repeats without any messy distortion added.
 

Saapanael

I went to Cornell
I'm looking to buy a proper tube amp in the not-too-distant future as I've grown weary of solid-state sounds. I'm looking at combo amps up to 1000 EUR. Originally I was thinking about a Fender or VOX for great cleans but after reading up on them it seems that trying to boost a Fender into metal territory with pedals is not the way to go.

So I started looking at Marshalls and Laneys, and from what is sold in my country, the options in this price range are Marshall JVM215C, Marshall SC20CE, Laney Ironheart IRT30, and what I'm leaning towards the most right now: Laney Lionheart L5T (or L20T, if it's not too powerful for home use). The Lionheart is certainly not a metal amp but from the demos I've seen it looks like it could be boosted into that territory if you combine the amp drive with a good OD pedal. Does anyone have experience using a lower-gain amp for harsher rock sounds? I'm talking about Maiden-like distortion that could chug when needed (not ultra-high modern saturated distortion). I've never owned a tube amp but it seems that the base for any great sound is a great clean tone, and that's where I have slight doubts about Marshall amps. Besides, the Lionheart looks absolutely fantastic and costs 715 EUR for the 5-watter and 870 EUR for the 20-watter.

To make matters harder, there's hundreds of OD pedals out there. The ones that have caught my attention online are Fulltone OCD, MXR GT-OD, Friedman BE-OD, ProCo Rat 2 etc. So which pedal/amp combination in this price range would get me the best overall sound from cleans to distorted tones? My goal is to have something that I could use for home recording, so having to crank the amp up very loud to get a decent sound would be a downside.

Here's a demo of the 5-watt Lionheart with a Greenizer OD. Pretty solid sounds at 08:10.
 

Maturin

Sköldpadda
To make matters harder, there's hundreds of OD pedals out there. The ones that have caught my attention online are Fulltone OCD, MXR GT-OD, Friedman BE-OD, ProCo Rat 2 etc. So which pedal/amp combination in this price range would get me the best overall sound from cleans to distorted tones? My goal is to have something that I could use for home recording, so having to crank the amp up very loud to get a decent sound would be a downside.

I've tried/own all of those except for the Rat.

Friedman BE-OD amp in a box type of pedal meant to run into a super-clean channel and replace the amps own distortion. More modern concept, doesn't stack well with other pedals. Despite the OD in the name this is a proper modern distortion pedal with an insane lot of gain. Think like a Boss Metal Zone but with Friedman-tone... Similar pedals would be JHS Angry Charlie, Suhr Riot. Tried the Deluxe version with two channels but didn't like it. Very tight/dry sounding.

MXR GT-OD old school tubescreamer-esque pedal which won't give you a lot of distortion on its own, but rather a volume boost and light overdrive. Great for tighening up a tube amp's distorted channel and adding more gain on top or to goose a proper distortion pedal after it (the way I use OD pedals). Great overdrive, but currently left off my board. Similar pedals would be Boss SD-1 and Ibanez TS-808/TS-9 etc.

Fulltone OCD sort of inbetween the two above. Not quite a distortion pedal but an overdrive with a lot of gain.

ProCo Rat2 is a mix between a fuzz and a distortion pedal. Does both well. Great for stacking with other pedals. Usually as the main distortion with an OD running into it to goose it and get more gain.

I'm personally into old school distortions with an OD in front. Running a Boss DS-1 (which doesn't sound any good on its own but is truly glorious if you run an SD-1 into it).

I think your best bet is to try out the classics and combine compressor + OD + distortion for a smooth gain tone with a lot of fluidity for legato but not Metal Zone levels of modern metal tone.
 

Saapanael

I went to Cornell
Have you tried EHX OD pedals?

I wouldn’t like to stack too many pedals, ideally. I have an MXR Micro Amp for clean boost. I could use the amp drive for slightly overdriven sounds, boost that with the MXR and let a nice gritty OD/dist pedal do the rest. It’s a matter of just trying out different ones now. But the store that has the Laney Lionheart doesn’t have the Rat, the store that has the Rat doesn’t have the Lionheart etc. ProCo Rat seems like a great choice but it might be a tad too mid-rangey, cutting out some of the low end at normal distortion levels. Pushing the dist. brings back the low end but gets too fizzy and saturated for my taste. OCD has more low end but I have a gut feeling it’s not as great as it’s hyped up to be. GT-OD seems very nice and I like MXR aesthetics in general but I’m not sure how much gain I would be able to get from a Lionheart + Micro Amp + GT-OD. Anyway, just my impressions based on demos, I won’t know anything before trying.
 

Maturin

Sköldpadda
No, staying away from EHX due to their good sound/bad build-reputation.

Micro Amp is great! Using it as a solo boost. With all the distortion coming from the pedals there is so much headroom left on the amp that I get massive volume boost by engaging it. (Running it into an already distorted amp doesn't do much but tightening up the sound.) So my gain stage is really compressor (not boosting) + overdrive + distortion + solo boost (Micro Amp).
 

Saapanael

I went to Cornell
No, staying away from EHX due to their good sound/bad build-reputation.

Micro Amp is great! Using it as a solo boost. With all the distortion coming from the pedals there is so much headroom left on the amp that I get massive volume boost by engaging it. (Running it into an already distorted amp doesn't do much but tightening up the sound.) So my gain stage is really compressor (not boosting) + overdrive + distortion + solo boost (Micro Amp).
Have you used a Revv G3?
 

Maturin

Sköldpadda
Not tried it, no.

About amps, all your favourite tones from back in the days were done by boosting a lower gain amp because higher gain amps didn't really exist. People modded their Marshalls for extra gain stages. Or ran a tubescreamer in front.

As for recommendations, I'm very happy with my Engl Screamer 50, but that seems to have been discontinued and I think it sold for around 1300 EUR at the time. Overbuilt and brilliant sounding amp. Recommend the brand though. Musik-Produktiv or Thomann should be able to deliver all over Europe.

Otherwise you can't really go wrong with a Marshall... It's the quintessential rock/metal sound and everyone's using them.
 

Saapanael

I went to Cornell
Well, if I could choose anything I wanted, I would go for this:

mesa-boogie-mark-five-25-head.jpg
 

daan

Educated Fool
My goal is to have something that I could use for home recording, so having to crank the amp up very loud to get a decent sound would be a downside.
If you're aiming at home recording and you really want a tube amp, I'd advise to go for head + cab (unless the combo can send raw signal), so you could use something like Two Notes C.A.B./Captor or Suhr Reactive Load and record with IRs. Much more convenient than miking IMHO.

I've tried a lot of amps for home. Out of the more affordable ones, my two favourites were EVH 5150 LBX (the first one - LBX II sounded awful at low volume) and Orange OR15. Marshall DSL1 was quite nice too, but even that one was loud. After trying many amps, I settled for a pedalboard-only rig with an HX Stomp serving as the amp and I love this setup for simplicity and ease of use. I kind of no longer see the purpose of having a tube amp for the stuff I currently do, because the digital stuff has made a huge progress over the last couple of years.
 

Saapanael

I went to Cornell
If you're aiming at home recording and you really want a tube amp, I'd advise to go for head + cab (unless the combo can send raw signal), so you could use something like Two Notes C.A.B./Captor or Suhr Reactive Load and record with IRs. Much more convenient than miking IMHO.

I've tried a lot of amps for home. Out of the more affordable ones, my two favourites were EVH 5150 LBX (the first one - LBX II sounded awful at low volume) and Orange OR15. Marshall DSL1 was quite nice too, but even that one was loud. After trying many amps, I settled for a pedalboard-only rig with an HX Stomp serving as the amp and I love this setup for simplicity and ease of use. I kind of no longer see the purpose of having a tube amp for the stuff I currently do, because the digital stuff has made a huge progress over the last couple of years.
I'm going to visit someone who has a Laney Lionheart 20W head today. Interestingly, the 5W head has a DI recording option (it records one track dry and one with the amp's settings) but the 20-watter doesn't. Anyway, I'll hear what the amp sounds like. Isn't a signal recorded through a mic always going to sound the best, though? It doesn't seem like too much of a hassle to put a Shure SM57 in front of the amp and record that way, but I haven't tried it either.
 

daan

Educated Fool
Isn't a signal recorded through a mic always going to sound the best, though?
That's debatable, I guess. In my experience, IRs gave better results than me miking the cab with an SM57. High quality impulses, such as Ownhammer or Bogren Digital, are relatively cheap and get you access to a variety of cabs, mics and mic mixes. Perfect for home recording. I recommend checking out sound demos on YouTube.
 

Saapanael

I went to Cornell
Yeah, it seems great and sounds awesome as I just heard in a demo but I don’t think looking for the right cab amongst millions of different ones is what I want to do right now. It won’t help me with creativity, I’m afraid.
 

Saapanael

I went to Cornell
That's debatable, I guess. In my experience, IRs gave better results than me miking the cab with an SM57. High quality impulses, such as Ownhammer or Bogren Digital, are relatively cheap and get you access to a variety of cabs, mics and mic mixes. Perfect for home recording. I recommend checking out sound demos on YouTube.
So I started looking into the software a bit, briefly tried the Helix Native and Bias FX trial versions. Some people online refer to Neural DSP as the guitar modeler (is that how these applications are called - modelers?) They don't have as many different cabs and amps to choose from but they apparently have some of the best sounds. Thinking of getting the Archetype: Petrucci thing now but I will look around more at first.

So it's really as simple as plugging into an audio interface, recording a dry signal and letting the modeler do the rest, or am I missing something?
 

daan

Educated Fool
So it's really as simple as plugging into an audio interface, recording a dry signal and letting the modeler do the rest, or am I missing something?
Yes, it is that simple. You plug your guitar into the interface and either open the standalone app and just play or open your DAW, create an audio track put the plugin on the track and record. The cool thing about recording this way is that you can change the sound after you tracked. You just have to make sure you have your audio drivers set up properly.

IMO Neural DSP is the best in the game right now, when it comes to VST amp sims. I have Archetype Gojira and it's one of the best sounds I've ever had. The Soldano one seems great too, I have to get it one day.
 

Saapanael

I went to Cornell
In my search of the perfect affordable amp, I have landed on this setup. Coupled with a good distortion pedal, this should take me everywhere I need to go.

Head: Marshall Origin 50H
1659361605840.png
Cab: Peavey 112-C (1x12” with a Celestion Vintage 30 speaker)





1659361698363.jpeg
 
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Saapanael

I went to Cornell
In my search of the perfect affordable amp, I have landed on this setup. Coupled with a good distortion pedal, this should take me everywhere I need to go.

Head: Marshall Origin 50H
View attachment 21481
Cab: Peavey 112-C (1x12” with a Celestion Vintage 30 speaker)





View attachment 21482
Just to be clear, I haven’t bought anything yet, I still need to gather money for it. :bigsmile: I think I’ll get a MXR Super Badass Distortion to go with it, but it’s just fantasizing at this point.

I am a bit worried about the 50 watts but it does have a selectable output of 5, 10 or 50 watts. I wonder if I could get nice sounds at home on the 5-watt mode. They say it’s still hella loud. As for levels, I’m going to be playing this amp on a separate floor so I don’t need to play at whisper level but there’s still people on the lower floors and I have to be considerate. Sucks that the Origin is out of stock in the physical store so I can’t go and try it.
The 20 watt version has output selections of 0.5, 3 and 20 watts. I’m leaning towards the bigger head, still, as it seems a reasonable long-term investment.
 

jazz from hell

Ancient Mariner
The room is also going to be important, if you want to record, especially if it's loud.

I don't like to play too loud, if it's on the back of my head, I might annoy others. One solution is re-amping:
A) play the amp at neighbor-friendly volume, but record the DI separately, do as many takes as I need, comp it together in Logic --> re-amp at the volume it needs, at a time of day it's ok, just once (or twice, to make sure).
B ) use amp sims to record (at night) --> re-amp like A)
Both possibilities have advantages and disadvantages. Several combinations possible as well.
I should probably check out the whole load box thing.

Also to consider: tube amps burn a lot of electricity...
 

Saapanael

I went to Cornell
The room is also going to be important, if you want to record, especially if it's loud.

I don't like to play too loud, if it's on the back of my head, I might annoy others. One solution is re-amping:
A) play the amp at neighbor-friendly volume, but record the DI separately, do as many takes as I need, comp it together in Logic --> re-amp at the volume it needs, at a time of day it's ok, just once (or twice, to make sure).
B ) use amp sims to record (at night) --> re-amp like A)
Both possibilities have advantages and disadvantages. Several combinations possible as well.
I should probably check out the whole load box thing.

Also to consider: tube amps burn a lot of electricity...
I’m not sure what you mean by re-amping at the proper volume. How does the process of re-amping a DI track work?
 

Edington

Last Son of The Miracle
I am a bit worried about the 50 watts but it does have a selectable output of 5, 10 or 50 watts. I wonder if I could get nice sounds at home on the 5-watt mode. They say it’s still hella loud.

I don't know how a 50-watt running at 5-watt would compare, but my old Blackstar was a 5-watter and that had plenty of volume. Could easily be used at home-friendly volumes but loud enough to get a nice tone. I even used it playing with bands and it still managed to cut through, though I'd recommend a higher-wattage amp for that purpose.

If it still is too loud, an attenuator is the solution. The JHS Pedals Little Black Box looks pretty good, is reasonably priced and is only the size of a mini effects pedal.
 
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