#1
Which to buy?


I am searching for a light overdrive or a clean boost to use in front of the high gain channel of an all tube amp voiced for metal, and I am looking for one of those two pedals to add clarity, tightness, and faster response on the low end of my metal minded riffs. I'm using a Peavey XXX combo if you must know.


But here's the dilemma: I already have tons and tons of gain from the amp, so if I get an OD I will be keeping the drive set as zero(ish) and simply using it as a boost to tighten my high gain channel. However, if this is the case, wouldn't it be easier just to but a clean boost pedal and not have to fuss with paying the extra money for a high class OD like the Maxon OD 808, OD9, vintage Ibanez 808, etc.?? Since I'm only after a clean, tight addition to my pre-existing tone, might a clean boost suit the job better and impart less "sonic artifacts" on my tone than an OD might?

That was my thinking, since I'll barely ever use the actual overdrive of an overdrive pedal ( not to say it wouldn't be spiffy to have around for those 3-4 times per month I bust out approximately 3.7 minutes worth of vintage minded licks ). However, if you take a look at most of the big name metal acts using boosts in front of high gain tube amps, they are getting the boosts from OVERDRIVE pedals, not clean boosts: Killswitch Engage and the Maxon OD 808, Firewind and the Greenscreamer, Metallica and the Tubescreamer, and yadda yadda yadda the list goes on forever.


So what gives? If all those big name metal outfits are just using them as a boost, why aren't they using clean boosts instead of ODs?? Which type of pedal is best for tightening up metal riffs, an OD or a clean boost?


It boggles the mind.

Comments, suggestions, pedal recommendations, general metal-pedal-boosting-minded gear chat, etc. all welcome. Anyone with ideas please speak up!
#2
the Od808 is like 130...
Suck it up- the OD generally is supposed to tighten and add a tiny bit of crunch and compression to the signal, will sound better than a clean boost
#4
It's the compression and the overall character they impart me thinks. I have a few suggestions. First, try out as much as you can, if you have a gc take a bunch of pedals home and try them and return them later, I used to do that a lot.

I think something like an LPB-1, a bad monkey, and maybe a compressor are a good place to start. Don't ask me on the compressor, I'm totally unfamiliar.

If you have more money the maxon is certainly worth a shot, the TS I made worked nicely for tightening up the F30 I had. The fulltone fulldrive 2 should would work well as well. I've not personally tried it for tightening metal, but it's very transparent with the ability to add mids (or not) and give you some compression.

One thing to consider is lowering the gain and then using the OD to get it back to the gain levels you're looking for. You have to realize that anything driving the front of the amp is gonna add gain simply from driving the preamp harder.

I dunno if I helped or confused you more, good luck though

One final note, I think a good overdrive or two is a valuable weapon in the tube amp guitarists arsenal. You can use it on the clean channel, use it to boost, use it to boost and add gain, as a solo boost. I don't know how anyone with a tube amp could ever live without one, I'd say it's the most important pedal there is.
I don't give a shit if you listen to me or not
#5
Quote by Highwaytohell
the Od808 is like 130...
Suck it up- the OD generally is supposed to tighten and add a tiny bit of crunch and compression to the signal, will sound better than a clean boost



Care to elaborate? How will the OD with zero drive dialed in sound any different than a clean boost with zero pre-gain dialed in? Not being snotty, just looking for more thoughts.


Also, click here for an e-smack-in-the-face . But not really, I thank you for your input.
#6
Even with the drive at zero you're still getting some crunch (with most overdrives) and you're still getting the compression, which is the key I think. Clean boosts are designed to be transparent, thus they lack compression.
I don't give a shit if you listen to me or not
#7
That compression, as kevin talked about, sort of works lesser than a regular compressor, but in a way that colors the tone. the coloration of that tone - in a good way - is what really defines the sound.
#8
Quote by Kevin Saale
It's the compression and the overall character they impart me thinks. I have a few suggestions. First, try out as much as you can, if you have a gc take a bunch of pedals home and try them and return them later, I used to do that a lot.

I think something like an LPB-1, a bad monkey, and maybe a compressor are a good place to start. Don't ask me on the compressor, I'm totally unfamiliar.

If you have more money the maxon is certainly worth a shot, the TS I made worked nicely for tightening up the F30 I had. The fulltone fulldrive 2 should would work well as well. I've not personally tried it for tightening metal, but it's very transparent with the ability to add mids (or not) and give you some compression.

One thing to consider is lowering the gain and then using the OD to get it back to the gain levels you're looking for. You have to realize that anything driving the front of the amp is gonna add gain simply from driving the preamp harder.

I dunno if I helped or confused you more, good luck though

One final note, I think a good overdrive or two is a valuable weapon in the tube amp guitarists arsenal. You can use it on the clean channel, use it to boost, use it to boost and add gain, as a solo boost. I don't know how anyone with a tube amp could ever live without one, I'd say it's the most important pedal there is.



don't worry, I'm quite familiar with the effect of driving the pre-amp of metal amps with other stuff, and for the record, if I bought an OD it would be gearmanndude's Luther Drive, which is mind bogglingly cheap and sounds better to my ears than hordes of hand-wired boutique pedals. So in the end, money is not a huge issue, I'm really just after the difference in performance between the OD vs clean boost experience...
#9
On the line of compression, why don't folks use compressors more often to tighten the front end of amps in metal applications if that compression ( as provided by the OD ) is what really makes the difference? Again, not trying to be snotty, I'm just here to learn.
#10
the thing i think people are missing is that all of those overdrives mentioned are some sort of tubescreamer or clone. tubescreamers have a nice hump in the mids, which i would guess is part of that process of tightening the gain up. on top of that, im sure there is some gain added from the pedal as well. the gain is most likely not at zero, but something around 3 would be my guess. its not just adding the volume, its the overall character of the overdrive that these people want. the transparent volume of a boost pedal isnt going to do much other than push the amp a bit harder. however, that may be all that is needed so you should try out both solutions if you can.
#11
Quote by jof1029
the thing i think people are missing is that all of those overdrives mentioned are some sort of tubescreamer or clone. tubescreamers have a nice hump in the mids, which i would guess is part of that process of tightening the gain up. on top of that, im sure there is some gain added from the pedal as well. the gain is most likely not at zero, but something around 3 would be my guess. its not just adding the volume, its the overall character of the overdrive that these people want. the transparent volume of a boost pedal isnt going to do much other than push the amp a bit harder. however, that may be all that is needed so you should try out both solutions if you can.

+1
Ibanez XPT707 Xiphos
Schecter C-7 Loomis FR

Mesa Boogie Mark III blue dot Coliseum

Mesa Traditional 4x12 v30's x EVM 12l's


THE SEVEN STRING LEGION
#12
+2

I'll simply add this. I have a Bad Monkey and never touch the dials. Gain is on '0'. Level is on '10'. Low and High (Mids control) are both on '5'. Pretty flexible.

I had a compressor but got rid of it because it messed with the tone too much. 'Robbed' might be a better way to put it.

The Bad Monkey works well as a Tubescreamer clone but is even more transparant and gives you Mids control like I said all for $50.
#14
Boss SD-1.

$50 and you're done.
MARSHALL JVM 210H
PEAVEY JSX
KRANK 412
MESA 412
FENDER STRATS
DIMARZIO
CELESTION