#1
On my Peavey Valveking Royal 8 I have been experimenting with cranking the gain all the way to the max, and keeping the master control low.

The distortion created this way (with the preamp valve) does not sound like what you hear on produced albums. I have heard that most of the distortion you hear is based on musicians overdriving the power amp section.

The main thing is the way power chords sound. It's hard to describe, but they almost sound out of tune when cranked all the way. I know a distorting valve creates primarily even ordered harmonics, and the power chord is based on fifths. Is this somehow modulating the sound to make it sound out of tune?

The amp is working properly, it sounds fine when playing clean.

Thanks for any insight.

Washburn X50PRO FE (GuitarHeads active bridge pickup)
Dean Vendetta XM
Jet City JCA20H head, w Eminence Texas Heat 12"
Danelectro Transparent Overdrive
Ibanez TS7
DigiTech RP-255
Behringer VD1 (Big Muff PI clone)
#2
most metal style sounds come from preamp distortion (like you're describing)...other styles rely on more distortion from the power amp section (like AC/DC for example). It might be that your preamp section just doesn't have the amount of umph that you're looking for. As far as your power chords sounding out of tune, it could be a lot of things. Intonation, your settings are making your tone muddy, etc.
Last edited by eyebanez333 at Dec 17, 2009,
#3
Just off the bat - your tone straight from a Royal 8 without any sort of post-processing will not sound anything like a studio-produced album.

Cranking your preamp is more desirable for certain genres of music (e.g., metal, hardcore, metalcore, and others along those lines) than cranking your power amp, so that will ultimately depend on what you're trying to play.

Something that may help your tone a bit would be using an overdrive pedal, such as a Tubescreamer, in front of your amp as a boost. I'm not 100% sure what you're referring to wtih the power chords - assuming the problem lies with your amp and not your guitar, some kind of sound clip may help.
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#4
Thanks for the thoughts, guys.

I think I'm playing the chords properly, because they sound great if I keep the amp settings on clean, and use my Digitech RP255 to model say a Big Muff, or overdriven JCM800.

It only happens when im using the amp to create the distortion.

Which brings me to the next question.... HOW do you make your guitar sound like that on a studio album? For instance, I can play the opening riff from Soundgarden's Spoonman OK, http://www.victoriacapitalllc.com/spoonman.mp3 (that was recorded about a month ago, I've been playing for 3 total). But it sounds nothing like on the album. Any tips on how they get that 'clean' yet distorted sound?

Washburn X50PRO FE (GuitarHeads active bridge pickup)
Dean Vendetta XM
Jet City JCA20H head, w Eminence Texas Heat 12"
Danelectro Transparent Overdrive
Ibanez TS7
DigiTech RP-255
Behringer VD1 (Big Muff PI clone)
#5
I think your problem lies in the fact that you are cranking the gain and getting preamp distortion on your amp...while using the RP255 models which is adding more gain and distortion....which is likely the cause of the unclear, muddy tone you're describing. Try running a clean sound from your amp (i.e. turn the gain down)...while using the RP255 models and see if that sounds any better.
#6
Quote by tronester
HOW do you make your guitar sound like that on a studio album? For instance, I can play the opening riff from Soundgarden's Spoonman OK, http://www.victoriacapitalllc.com/spoonman.mp3 (that was recorded about a month ago, I've been playing for 3 total). But it sounds nothing like on the album. Any tips on how they get that 'clean' yet distorted sound?


They don't have their gain on 10..........
#7
Typically, when this happens it's because the notes ARE out of tune. Have you checked the intonation on your gutiar?
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#8
Quote by eyebanez333
I think your problem lies in the fact that you are cranking the gain and getting preamp distortion on your amp...while using the RP255 models which is adding more gain and distortion....which is likely the cause of the unclear, muddy tone you're describing. Try running a clean sound from your amp (i.e. turn the gain down)...while using the RP255 models and see if that sounds any better.


Sorry I wasn't clear. When I use the RP-255, I turn the gain on the amp way down to below the clipping threshold. In that case, only the RP-255 is creating the distortion.

When I crank the amp's preamp, I have the guitar plugged directly into the amp.

The first example sounds fine, the second, not so much for playing power chords.

Washburn X50PRO FE (GuitarHeads active bridge pickup)
Dean Vendetta XM
Jet City JCA20H head, w Eminence Texas Heat 12"
Danelectro Transparent Overdrive
Ibanez TS7
DigiTech RP-255
Behringer VD1 (Big Muff PI clone)
#9
I have not checked the guitar's intonation though. The strings are about 3 months old, and of unknown quality (they came with the guitar). I presume I would want to replace the strings before messing with the intonation?

Washburn X50PRO FE (GuitarHeads active bridge pickup)
Dean Vendetta XM
Jet City JCA20H head, w Eminence Texas Heat 12"
Danelectro Transparent Overdrive
Ibanez TS7
DigiTech RP-255
Behringer VD1 (Big Muff PI clone)
#10
Guys, surely this is more to do with the EIGHT INCH SPEAKER than anything else?
Start piling on the gain and you're putting out too much for a small driver to handle efficiently.

Try plugging into a mate's cab and see if that helps at all!
#11
Replacing strings semi-regularly is always a good idea (I need to get a new set this friday, its been a few weeks). They start sounding dead, and loose their slinkyness.

Try messing with your settings, I doubt you need the gain completely cranked, especially for a Soundgarden kind of tone. Your main problem, of course, is the lack of any sort of boost, the shitty 8" speaker, and your lack of decent tubes.

Like kyle62 said, try running it through a 2x12 or something.
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#12
Well I am getting a new 12" Jensen speaker for christmas, and I plan on putting it in a 1x12" cabinet that I plan on making.

Even with the gain maxed out on the amp, there is not enough distortion when playing the last part of the riff which is palm muted. I'll try and make a recording of it this weekend as an example.

Do different brands of tubes have large differences in their break-up characteristics? I know that different brands have different gains that you have to account for. Since this is a single ended class A amp, I should just be able to pop some new ones in there and go, right?

Washburn X50PRO FE (GuitarHeads active bridge pickup)
Dean Vendetta XM
Jet City JCA20H head, w Eminence Texas Heat 12"
Danelectro Transparent Overdrive
Ibanez TS7
DigiTech RP-255
Behringer VD1 (Big Muff PI clone)
#13
Chances are it could be slightly out of tune because of internation or old strings or whatever but it may just be that your not hearing it til you crank you're amp cause you're normally covering it up with too much gain.