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#1
I just learned something about effects. It's nuts!

I have read every article, and watched every video that I could find in my quest for the Eric Johnson tone. I appreciate you guys putting up with my videos and questions. This will be the last video that I ask you to watch! I have beat this subject to death, but I didn't want to stop until I was satisfied.

I did learn one important thing. At first, I laughed when people said that Eric Johnson is very picky about batteries that go into his effects, and that he liked to use batteries that are almost dead. I thought that it sounded absolutely crazy. Well, it might just be the answer! Batteries that are almost dead have given me the best or most close Eric Johnson tone to date. It is pretty freaky, but so far it is works.

I really enjoy playing guitar with this type of tone. To me, having this type of sound makes me not want to put the guitar down. It has a serious attack or bite to it, a fuzzy like top end sound, and a Chello like bottom end. I think this is where the almost dead batteries come into play.

One of my friends built me a power supply to simulate almost dead 9 volt batteries. It works like a charm. It works great for other effects pedals as well. It is weird stuff, but does something to the circuits.

Here is a new video. Please let me know what you think!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qSy1QKqQGno
#4
Variable voltage. My Voodoo Labs Pedal Power 2+ has 2 ports that do this, varies the voltage from 4v-9v. It's cool.
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#5
They do say that a lower voltage causes a 'browner' tone, and to me, Eric Johnson's sound is pretty brown.

Interesting tonal discovery.
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#6
Thanks for your comments!

I will have to write down all of the settings on my amps and effects. It took me a good while to get the distortion / overdrive set up this way and have the clean tone to sound good also on the same 2 amps, instead of having 4 amps running at the same time. Trying to get other tones only take a little while, but this was a real pain and a lot of reading. It is as close as I will get I think, but that's okay. I like it!

As far as final setup, I think any tube amps will work. You just have to stack 3 or 4 overdrive and distortions together. You have to adjust and adjust the gains, mids, treble, amount of echo, reverb. Make sure you are running almost dead batteries or very low voltage to them. It's a mess.

There's probably a Pod or rack effects unit out there that may do the same thing, but I don't know about it. I just like the simple stomp boxes.
#7
Oh yeah, I just started using the sag thingie on my PP+ with my Fulltone DP-1 and it does give me a browner EJ-ish tone
#8
I watched the video and your tone is pretty good, similiar to EJ's but you're never going to exactly get it.

If you really want his tone you're going to have to do some work with your playing. Hate to say it, but alot of EJ's tone was in his fingers, his touch, his intonation, and his vibrato.
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#9
why do you have both jc120 and a fender twin?
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#10
Quote by O.O Meow O.O
why do you have both jc120 and a fender twin?



The Roland is Solid State ( No Tubes ). The Twin is a 1965. (44 years old.)

The old Fender Twin makes the Roland sound like a kids toy. When you crank it up and the tubes get red hot, it sounds like a stick of dynamite going off. It is great for rock, blues, and country music

The Roland is a good amp to play Jazz on because it is really mellow and don't have much attack or bite. It is also good to take when I play outside at a gig. If it gets rained on or some idiot kicks it or something it's not going to give me a heart attack.

Both are nice amps, but have to be used for different things. I have never played through an amp that can do everything, just like a Gibson Les Paul sounds nothing like a Telecaster.
#11
ahh,both are really nice amp though

and whats in your rack BTW?
Quote by angusfan16
I got my sister pregnant once. Yeah, that was awkward, but mostly because she's 6 years younger than me.
#12
Quote by O.O Meow O.O
ahh,both are really nice amp though

and whats in your rack BTW?



In the rack is an old Roland Digital Delay, Compressor limiter-noise gate, reverb unit, aural exciter, another noise gate

In my toy box is various overdrives, compressor, digital delay, chorus, A/B amp switching boxes, amp splitter boxes so I can select which amp I want to hear at any given time. Some stuff is newer and some is really old junk. In the front is a master loop switch box. Three of my amps are over 20 years old now.

#13
I like it. What's your signal chain for the video demo?

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#15
Quote by stradivari310
I like it. What's your signal chain for the video demo?


Pretty much this is the signal chain that I have used for years!

#17
im confused with your diagram
Quote by angusfan16
I got my sister pregnant once. Yeah, that was awkward, but mostly because she's 6 years younger than me.
#18
I'm amazed that you don't get any phasing issues with all of those parallel lines in your chain. That's a very nice setup

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#19
Quote by forsaknazrael
Did your friend build this?
http://www.beavisaudio.com/Projects/DBS/index.htm

Very simple to do. Just saying. Hope he didn't rip you off.


EDIT: What kind of Laney is that?


It is similar to it, but it has a foot switch.

It is an old 1987 Laney AOR Pro Tube Lead, with fairly new Sevelana tubes in it. It weighs a ton, sounds better, and is as loud as my old Marshall JCM 800 half stack that I used to have years ago. I bought it in a pawn shop for $250.00. Some people don't care for Laney's, but I think it is a great little amp. The amps distortion is pretty hardcore, but I don't use the amps overdrive section. I run as clean as it will go and use the floor pedals for the distortion sounds.
#21
wait,so your flextone just sit there for nothing?
Quote by angusfan16
I got my sister pregnant once. Yeah, that was awkward, but mostly because she's 6 years younger than me.
#22
Quote by forsaknazrael
Sweet, I thought looked like an AOR.

I was looking hard for one of those before I found my Peavey VTM last week. Interesting that you don't use the OD...most people wanting it like it for it's JCM800 on steroids tone.


I might use the Laney's own distortion, when I play some really heavy stuff, it just depends on what I'm trying to do.
#23
Quote by O.O Meow O.O
wait,so your flextone just sit there for nothing?


It is really good for recording. It has some nice rock and blues tones.

I usually practice at home with the Flextone. It saves my tube amps.

If I practice all of the time with my tube amps, they will need tubes a lot more often and be wore out a lot quicker. After several hours of my tube amps being on, they get red hot, and it can't be good for them. Also, my practice room gets really hot even with the air conditioning on.
#24
Honestly, it doesn't sound much like EJ to me. There's a certain quality it has in common but that's about it. The cleans sound great though, definitely an EJ sort of vibe.

The real secret to EJ's tone is his ears. I just posted a video in the "Who to Listen to Thread" where he plays with Oz Noy (http://www.youtube.com/user/zambur#p/u/1/mFA8gsyDaLI). His rig is a SF Deluxe Reverb and a BF Deluxe Reverb with an XOTiC AC Booster into a Hermida Zendrive 2 into a TC Chorus that splits the signal between the two. He's got an old EP-3 running through the PA. Despite this, he still has that tone and there's only one battery in the equation. In his normal rig, there's none involved in the famous tone.
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#25
Quote by mmolteratx
Honestly, it doesn't sound much like EJ to me. There's a certain quality it has in common but that's about it. The cleans sound great though, definitely an EJ sort of vibe.

The real secret to EJ's tone is his ears. I just posted a video in the "Who to Listen to Thread" where he plays with Oz Noy (http://www.youtube.com/user/zambur#p/u/1/mFA8gsyDaLI). His rig is a SF Deluxe Reverb and a BF Deluxe Reverb with an XOTiC AC Booster into a Hermida Zendrive 2 into a TC Chorus that splits the signal between the two. He's got an old EP-3 running through the PA. Despite this, he still has that tone and there's only one battery in the equation. In his normal rig, there's none involved in the famous tone.



I am trying to get his early 80's sound. It is a lot different than his sound now. I like it much better.
#26
Wow, that's a seriously complicated signal chain...Mine goes like this.
Guitar ---> Amp.
Wait.



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#27
WOW! Looking at the complexity of your set up makes me glad that I have a POD. I could never keep track of that signal chain.
#28
Nice rig man.
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#29
Quote by LezPaulEpiphone
Wow, that's a seriously complicated signal chain...Mine goes like this.
Guitar ---> Amp.


I'm with you there bud
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Thats it.
#30
I am just a tone freak. I have had a bunch of processors and I liked a lot of the clean tones. I have the Line 6 pod stuff. The distortions and the overdrives don't sound quite as real as a really good dedicated floor stomp pedal. I would rather have 6 really great distortions than 500 decent ones like my Line 6 or other processors have.
#31
Jon, you got a VTM? Nice.

I blackface Twins. What tubes you running in that? The originals? I love the voltage sag tone. But our shows are too long to use it all the time

Nice rig, Telewanger. I'm really jealous. Is that an original Flextone, or a II?
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#32
I bought the Blackface Twin straight off of ebay. It has JJ tubes in it. I don't really know how old they are right now. They seem to be nice and quite and still sound very clear, so I am not going to mess with them.

The Line 6 is the Flextone II XL. I like the amp, but after playing it for a while and then pluging into the tube amps, it is like night and day. The big tube crunch and tone can't be done, even close, with the Line 6. The Roland Amp is great for soft clean tones and Jazz.

The line 6 is my practice amp and the tube amps are my recording amps. I try not to use the tube amps when goofing around, practicing, or writing songs. They are old, so I try to save them as much as possible.
#34
^i can understand where he is coming from though, if anything does go down on an amp that old then you may have to replace a part and that might make your amp less valuable. if i really wanted a tweed or blackface so bad i couldn't stand it anymore, then i would go with a new hand wired clone circuit just for that reason. because in general, handwired tube amps are pretty damn durable, fairly easy to repair(easier than pcb's?) and great sounding.

and if i did have a blackface(ab-763) or tweed(5F6-A, yes i have already picked the ones i would get out) then i would play the dog snot out of it like it was a beater. 1400 usd for a tweed bassman with 4 high end weber alnico jenson copies. tempting

Quote by stradivari310
I'm amazed that you don't get any phasing issues with all of those parallel lines in your chain. That's a very nice setup


i have run similarly complex 3 or 4 amp setups using stereo delays and stereo phasers with a couple a/b boxes, it actually adds tons of flexibility. i use 2 stereo 'satellite' amps for my stereo effects and one amp in the middle that is run out right after my distortion pedals, lets me blend 'clean' and 'wet' signals, helps temper my HOG and moog effects, makes my digital stereo delays more full and my mutron biphase more rich and crazy. to tell truth it makes all my tones sound better. endless possibilities with multi amp setups, from tonally matching amps, to making effects bigger, to allow a 'channel switching' effect with A/B boxes, and to be able to blend the amps as well to help focus your tone more.
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#35
I guess, after a cap job, though, they should be fine. Those are really the only thing on a tube amp that'll go bad after a significant number of years, other than normal tube consumption.

I'd probably get a newer clone of an older amp just because I'd want something cheaper, tho, haha. I'm not a big believer on mojo or cool points for a vintage amp.
#36
The Twin has the new Sprague orange drops in it. I went throught the amp and cleaned everything with contact cleaner and a toothbrush. The amp is in top condition. It is really bright and clean. The Laney is darker sounding. I always run them in stereo and they sound like they were made for each other.

The hard part was getting a really nice clean tone and a really nice Johnson type dirty tone to come out of only two amps, with the flick of one switch. He uses 4 to 6 amps. I realize that my tone is not ever going to be as good as his, but it is getting pretty good enough.

I marked all of my pedals with a white grease pencil and wrote down all of my amp and effects settings so that setup at a gig will be a breeze.
#37
Quote by gumbilicious
^i can understand where he is coming from though, if anything does go down on an amp that old then you may have to replace a part and that might make your amp less valuable. if i really wanted a tweed or blackface so bad i couldn't stand it anymore, then i would go with a new hand wired clone circuit just for that reason. because in general, handwired tube amps are pretty damn durable, fairly easy to repair(easier than pcb's?) and great sounding.

and if i did have a blackface(ab-763) or tweed(5F6-A, yes i have already picked the ones i would get out) then i would play the dog snot out of it like it was a beater. 1400 usd for a tweed bassman with 4 high end weber alnico jenson copies. tempting


i have run similarly complex 3 or 4 amp setups using stereo delays and stereo phasers with a couple a/b boxes, it actually adds tons of flexibility. i use 2 stereo 'satellite' amps for my stereo effects and one amp in the middle that is run out right after my distortion pedals, lets me blend 'clean' and 'wet' signals, helps temper my HOG and moog effects, makes my digital stereo delays more full and my mutron biphase more rich and crazy. to tell truth it makes all my tones sound better. endless possibilities with multi amp setups, from tonally matching amps, to making effects bigger, to allow a 'channel switching' effect with A/B boxes, and to be able to blend the amps as well to help focus your tone more.


I have not run less that 2 or 3 amps together for years. I gotta have that Stereo! I usually put them at least 2 to 4 feet apart when I gig, and I put them on stands pointing at a 45 degree angle, with a Shure 57 on both of them.
#39
Quote by forsaknazrael
Well, when I said "cap job", I was referring to the filter caps.


And FWIW, Sprague orange drops aren't always the best choice.



The filter caps are blue one's. I believe they are also Sprague?

I have one photo of the inside of the amp head from when I bought it.

Here it is!

http://www.atlanticplumbing.net/twinhead.jpg
#40
Holy god sir that's an awesome room. I hope someday to have a room that looks like that.
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