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#1
Hey guys,

So i have a fender frontman 15G that is a bit lacking in the distortion department. It sounds pretty good on its own, but I think it needs a bit more punch to it. I'm planning on upgrading to a Line 6 spider 30, but I'm also looking to buy an overdrive/distortion pedal for the frontman, which I might possibly be able to use with the Spider.

I'm looking for a hi-gain metal sound, a la killswitch engage, as i lay dying, august burns red, etc. However, I'd also like to be able to play old school thrash (Metallica, Testament, Megadeth) and I also do some shredding. All in all, I'm looking for not just hi-gain power, but versatility as well. It might be worth mentioning that I also use cleans from time to time, and I occasionally aim for a bluesy, mildly distorted tone when I need to.

Here are some of the pedals I'm considering:

Ibanez Tube Screamer
Digitech Metal Master
Boss Metal Zone
Boss DS1
MXR Zakk wylde overdrive

Budget: roughly $100


Which pedal would be best with the Frontman, and possibly with the Spider? I assume the Spider can achieve my desired tones without the help of pedals, so I'm primarily concerned with getting one for the Frontman, but it would be nice to have it work well with teh spider as well.

If there are any pedals that I have not considered that are also great and cost around $100 or below, please let me know! I'm trying to add the good ones to the list, and take out the ones that seem to be crap, so all help is appreciated!


One last question (if you're still awake ): I currently have a Digitech RP150 that i use mainly for delay, etc. However, I have messed around a bit with the distortion pedal models,and I've found that the Tube Screamer and the Metal Zone simulation work pretty well with my Frontman - especially the tube screamer. I'd assume that an actual Tube Screamer would sound better than the model, so my ideal position would be to keep the RP150 for delays and noise gate and compression, and buy a separate distortion pedal. Unfortunately, I might have to sell off the RP150 in order to purchase a distortion pedal.

What would be the best move for me here? Is selling an RP150 and getting a separate distortion pedal a good/bad idea, and why?


Thank you for all replies in advance! I hope I haven't put you guys to sleep with my long request .... -.-
#2
save that $100 and sell your amps and buy a better suited one
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Pedals
#3
Yeah, buy a new amp instead.

Those amps aren't really so good.
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#4
Quote by Carrot
save that $100 and sell your amps and buy a better suited one

This is your best bet. Those aren't the best amps so it won't matter how many pedals you run through them, they won't sound great. They could even end up sounding worse.
#5
You really don't want to boost that Frontman even more. The distortion will only get nastier. Maybe if you ran a really good pedal in front of the clean channel, not to overdrive it but let the pedal make the distortion, you could get decent high-gain sounds out of that amp. Probably, you'll need a new amp for really good medium to high gain stuff.
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#6
+1 to getting a new amp.

If you wanted to buy a distortion pedal to hold you over until you can get another amp...that would probably be fine (but you have the Digitech that sounds like it will work good enough)...but the Spider amp is pretty terrible, and it doesn't take pedals well.
#7
yeah the spider isn't much of an upgrade from the frontman. you can get much better for the money.
#10
So, I'm actually going to answer your question, instead of spitting repetition.

The Frontman amps takes pedals very well, so I'd suggest the Metal Zone or ZW overdrive. Those seem like the best options for what you'd like to accomplish right now. Later on, you can very much upgrade into a better amp, hold onto the same pedals, and you'll notice a difference with your guitar tone.

But right now, focus on the pedals, and not the amp. Wierd for me to say that, but yeah...that's what I'd suggest.
#11
Yeah, because a Metal Zone into a Frontman (or anything else for that matter) sounds great and all, best in its price range too.

And the OD will definitely help boost the gain with an SS amp, great idea.
#12
Quote by slickerthnsleek
Yeah, because a Metal Zone into a Frontman (or anything else for that matter) sounds great and all, best in its price range too.

And the OD will definitely help boost the gain with an SS amp, great idea.


*beepbeepbeep* Sarcasm detector.

Anyway, TS, I said earlier that you should just add that to your amp fund; the Spider wouldn't be an upgrade from the Frontman.
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#13
DONT BUY THAT LINE 6 SPIDER, SERIOUSLY.
Get a Peavey vypyr 15/30 or a Roland cube 30x.

Vypyr 15 costs $100, vypyr 30 costs $200 and the roland costs $275.

all those pedals u named suck except the Ibanez and the MXR. Even then, they are overdrive pedals and doesn't have enough gain for metal unless u use it to boost a tube amp's distortion.

If u dont want a new amp and want a pedal check out
Digitech Hardwire Metal distortion tl-2
Electro Harmonix Metal Muff
Guitars
Fender American Standard Strat 2008
Burny late 1980's Super Grade RLG-70 Les Paul
Sterling by Musicman JP50
Fender Classic Series 60's tele
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Amp
Roland Microcube
Fender Blues Junior III Humholdt
Last edited by holycow at Jan 9, 2010,
#14
Quote by kerokero

But right now, focus on the pedals, and not the amp.


Why should he not focus on the amp? It's not like it makes up a majority of your tone or anything
#15
Don't buy anything SS. And modeling amps, especially the cheap ones, are trash. This is coming from a man who made the mistake of buying a Line 6 earlier in life. It's going to be replaced by a Bassman. Dirt pedals only sound good through tube amps.
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#16
hey guys, thanks for all the replies, really appreciate it.

contrary to what you guys seem to think, i'm well aware that both the amps i will have are not good. Unfortunately, for reasons i can't explain, i might not be able to get the vypr or the cube, so its either the line 6 or a marshall MG. i've had very bad experiences with the MG, so I'm gonna have to get the line 6. And I will have to get an amp regardless, because I'm traveling internationally and can't take the frontman with me.

And the frontman isn't that bad, this is a video of me using it by itself, no pedals or anything, and the gain isn't too bad, atleast if the amp speaker isn't directly facing you.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XfOc59Rd_4s

are there any other amps that are in the 200-300 dollar price range that are value for money?


I do not have unlimited budget, and i have not liked any of the tube amps i have tried that are within my budget. besides, they are not an option in my particular situation
Last edited by ultimateshreddr at Jan 9, 2010,
#17
He would get a more "own" tone when using a distortion pedal together with the frontman though. ;-)
#18
Quote by kerokero
Later on, you can very much upgrade into a better amp, hold onto the same pedals, and you'll notice a difference with your guitar tone.

But right now, focus on the pedals, and not the amp. Wierd for me to say that, but yeah...that's what I'd suggest.


thank you, thats exactly what i'm trying to do. i'm not really in a situation to get a very good amp at the moment, but i will be later down the road.
#19
Just buy a Peavey Vypyr with the $100
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#20
i appreciate everyone taking out time to help answer my question, but i already know that my amps aren't good, and that i should probably get a better amp. The sad truth is that i have to stick with the frontman and the spider, there is no question about that at the moment. If that changes, I will let you guys know. I am fine with everyone suggesting better amps, but please try and advise me on the pedals too, since that's my main concern at the moment.
#21
Quote by Sunn_O)))
Don't buy anything SS. And modeling amps, especially the cheap ones, are trash. This is coming from a man who made the mistake of buying a Line 6 earlier in life. It's going to be replaced by a Bassman. Dirt pedals only sound good through tube amps.

Most pedals are solid state, Line 6 Vettas are solid state, Fractal Axe-FXs are solid state, Ampeg vh140s are solid state, etc.

So to correct you: don't buy rubbish SS amps!
Gear:
- Bugera 333
- VJ & VJ cab
- Jackson JS30
- TS9

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~ BUM: For all things extinguishing

Rackmount Tube Amp Project <<< Updates!
#22
if your going to get a modelling amp get a peavy vypyr. end of, good distortion already on it
#23
if u cant get the vypyr and the cube, get a vox vt15. way better than the line 6. and it takes pedals better than other modelling amps.
Guitars
Fender American Standard Strat 2008
Burny late 1980's Super Grade RLG-70 Les Paul
Sterling by Musicman JP50
Fender Classic Series 60's tele
Yamaha FS720S
Amp
Roland Microcube
Fender Blues Junior III Humholdt
#24
Line 6 uber metal would bring you a great sound . curiously this pedal sound awesome through cheap solid state amp . you can grab one for around 50 $ and with the noise gate and the pulverise channel , youll get a nice sound . the disotrtion id better than the spider imo .
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#25
Quote by Kanthras
Most pedals are solid state, Line 6 Vettas are solid state, Fractal Axe-FXs are solid state, Ampeg vh140s are solid state, etc.

So to correct you: don't buy rubbish SS amps!


I meant just SS amps (for use with pedals). Some SS has good clean sounds, but they still sound awful with pedals. SS pedals are fine in themselves.

Dirt pedals need an amp with tubes in it for them to drive. That's how that cool sound is created.
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Last edited by Sunn_O))) at Jan 9, 2010,
#26
Quote by Sunn_O)))
I meant just SS amps (for use with pedals). Some SS has good clean sounds, but they still sound awful with pedals. SS pedals are fine in themselves.



Modelling amps are usually the SS amps that sound terrible with pedals. Roland JC takes pedals extremely well.
Last edited by eyebanez333 at Jan 9, 2010,
#28
Quote by Sunn_O)))
I meant just SS amps (for use with pedals). Some SS has good clean sounds, but they still sound awful with pedals. SS pedals are fine in themselves.

Dirt pedals need an amp with tubes in it for them to drive. That's how that cool sound is created.


No they don't. What the hell. They "drive" regardless of whether they're going into a tube or not and a lot of SS amps can emulate tube-like breakup pretty well too.

This is a shitty recording, but it's a pedal(Dirty Bomb) through an SS amp.

http://www.box.net/shared/mny3kgsvnj
http://www.box.net/shared/angr3lvpel

The same pedal through a tube amp -

http://www.box.net/shared/rhju9rigck

The tube amp sounds a bit better since it has a bigger speaker(and I mic'd it better) but the tube saturation also makes it a bit compressed.
#29
Quote by holycow
if u cant get the vypyr and the cube, get a vox vt15. way better than the line 6. and it takes pedals better than other modelling amps.


I agree that spiders are terrible but to get a good sound he should get at least a 12 inch speaker. Vypyr 30 is the best he could do or a vox valvetronix are good too
#30
Putting a pedal in front of those 2 terrible amps wont change a thing. I think theres something in the ultimate gear thread about just buying a new amp instead of a pedal for your shit amp.
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#31
Quote by GURREN LAGANN
The Frontman will probably take pedals fine but the Spider won't.

The Spider takes Pedals quite well (it'll take anything in the guitar jack). I've even had my PC connected to the Spider through the guitar jack, which was quite fun, since I could apply phaser, flanger and stuff to any sound I wanted, including music, movies etc.
The A/D converters are really good in the Spiders. The built in modellers, effects and the amplifier... they're up to taste.

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#32
Usually I find with the modelers the modeling sounds fine but when you put a dirt box in front of it it gets kind of muddy. I'm not even sure why this is true.

Also, Sunn_O))), you are aware that some of Sunn's best loved amps are actually Solid State? And they're great amps too. Kind of ironic really since you're stuck up in this NEVER BUY ANYTHING SOLID STATE attitude.
#33
Solid state and boost pedals generally don't get along so well, unless you're setting the amp to clean and using the drive pedals as a dirtbox.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion.

Feel free to express yours so I can make an informed judgement about how stupid you are.
#34
Quote by GURREN LAGANN
Usually I find with the modelers the modeling sounds fine but when you put a dirt box in front of it it gets kind of muddy. I'm not even sure why this is true.

Also, Sunn_O))), you are aware that some of Sunn's best loved amps are actually Solid State? And they're great amps too. Kind of ironic really since you're stuck up in this NEVER BUY ANYTHING SOLID STATE attitude.


Disliking something you like doesn't make me stuck up. You thinking that I must like what you do is, however, pretentious.

They prefer to use Model Ts, which are tube.

Maybe they might use SS sometimes for cleans or bass. It's hard to pin down exactly what gear they use for what, but their preferred dirty amps are Sunn Model Ts.
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Last edited by Sunn_O))) at Jan 9, 2010,
#35
Disliking something you like doesn't make me stuck up. You thinking that I must like what you do is, however, pretentious.


What? It isn't just about like or dislike. It's about the irrational SS is always bad attitude you have. Though I must admit this line for defending this line of thought is new to me.

They prefer to use Model Ts, which are tube.


... I mean the Amp company Sunn, they made a few SS amps back in the day that a lot of collectors really like.
#36
Quote by GURREN LAGANN
What? It isn't just about like or dislike. It's about the irrational SS is always bad attitude you have. Though I must admit this line for defending this line of thought is new to me.


... I mean the Amp company Sunn, they made a few SS amps back in the day that a lot of collectors really like.



They have made some great solid state amps. But they only sound great with clean sounds. I think they're awful for dirt, whether naturally, or with a pedal.
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#37
But when you say this, you're only basing it off the SS amps you've heard, which is not SS amps. Not only that, with many people the perceptiosn you have hearing your first SS amps will colour your perception of future amps - since you "Know" SS amps sound bad, you'll subconciously try to find the flaws you wouldn't otherwise recognise.

Some SS amps can sound really great, like the Peavey Bandit, Tech 21 TM series, the JC series of amps, and a lot of Randalls. A lot of these take pedals very well too.
#38
ok so getting a line 6 would actually be a huge step down from a frontman. The frontman is actually a great amp except the fact the almost everyone on this site is a metal head. the lower wattage frontmans arent the best though. Why not get a Fender vibro or super champ, im a huge advocate of these amps. there both under 300 dollars and they use TUBES. They also take pedels extreamly well. they have distortion built into them and the super champ has two channels. i just use a boss od/ds and i get some pretty sick distortion.
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#39
Quote by GURREN LAGANN
But when you say this, you're only basing it off the SS amps you've heard, which is not SS amps. Not only that, with many people the perceptiosn you have hearing your first SS amps will colour your perception of future amps - since you "Know" SS amps sound bad, you'll subconciously try to find the flaws you wouldn't otherwise recognise.

Some SS amps can sound really great, like the Peavey Bandit, Tech 21 TM series, the JC series of amps, and a lot of Randalls. A lot of these take pedals very well too.



I've played many SS amps, not just the modeling versions. Some had really great clean sounds, but they all sounded awful with a lot of grit.

Some people like that sound. I don't. And judging by what most musicians use (tube), I would say I'm in the majority. And if most people prefer tube, then chances are TS will, too.
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#40
Quote by ultimateshreddr
i appreciate everyone taking out time to help answer my question, but i already know that my amps aren't good, and that i should probably get a better amp. The sad truth is that i have to stick with the frontman and the spider, there is no question about that at the moment. If that changes, I will let you guys know. I am fine with everyone suggesting better amps, but please try and advise me on the pedals too, since that's my main concern at the moment.



Pedals = 40$ cheapest good one, (Boss-Ds1 Distortion Pedal)

But why buy a pedal for 40$+?

Buy the 95$ Peavey and you get way better tone, plus a Similar pre-installed pedal/stompbox effect in the amp? Its like killing 12 birds with one stone. Pedals aren't all that, Amps > Pedal. Amps are more important.
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