#1
So I've been working on a guitar rig for a while now... and believe it or not it's for acoustic guitar. I run the rig in stereo, but I have a particular sound I'm trying to get, and it seems that TUBES are the only thing that will get it. I like the rich, warm, punchy sound of tubes, but they don't make tube acoustic amps, and also if you run into a mixer it won't matter what amp you use.

So I bought a tube direct box, and that sure helps warm up the sound, but I honestly want a little more tube punch. So I've been doing some research on various tube preamps/DI boxes and that led me to ask... is it undesirable to run multiple preamps or DIs, or a combination of a preamp and DI together to get the tube warmth? This isn't just to be fancy btw, if that's what you're thinking. Also, I would prefer to use the DI I have after the other one because the one I have has both a tube driven XLR out and THRU jack so I can use the house mixer and my amps for monitors. So, if anyone has any thoughts about this, please let me know! Thanks

Colby
#2
Quote by cmstewart809
So I've been working on a guitar rig for a while now... and believe it or not it's for acoustic guitar. I run the rig in stereo, but I have a particular sound I'm trying to get, and it seems that TUBES are the only thing that will get it. I like the rich, warm, punchy sound of tubes, but they don't make tube acoustic amps


you'll want something pretty clean for acoustic because the harmonic structures are complicated and will mush up with a standard sounding electric guitar tube amp. something like this

http://www.carvinguitars.com/products/single.php?product=TS100

will give a pretty clean power amp sound. plug one of your preamp or DI boxes into that with full range speakers.

Quote by cmstewart809
and also if you run into a mixer it won't matter what amp you use.


really? why is that? seems most bigger acts run their tube amps over a large in-house PA and they don't seem to lose anything.

Quote by cmstewart809
So I bought a tube direct box, and that sure helps warm up the sound, but I honestly want a little more tube punch.


so let me get this straight... you can't run a tube amp through a PA, but for some reason a tube DI box is fine to run through a PA? i am a little confused on this conclusion.


Quote by cmstewart809
So I've been doing some research on various tube preamps/DI boxes and that led me to ask... is it undesirable to run multiple preamps or DIs, or a combination of a preamp and DI together to get the tube warmth?


well, my pedal board runs a boost, OD, fuzz, HOG, a TC SCF and univibe and each has/is a preamp... then i run those into the preamp of my guitar amplifier. whether i get 'tube warmth' is pretty subjective though, but i think i do.

as for DI's, that is more complicated cuz some of those have certain emulators or advanced processing which doesn't always sound the best chained into other preamps.

furthermore, a chain of preamps can amplify the signal so much that you can end of clipping/distorting in a subsequent cascaded preamp.

Quote by cmstewart809
This isn't just to be fancy btw, if that's what you're thinking. Also, I would prefer to use the DI I have after the other one because the one I have has both a tube driven XLR out and THRU jack so I can use the house mixer and my amps for monitors. So, if anyone has any thoughts about this, please let me know! Thanks

Colby


well, if you really want an 'all tube setup' then i'd run your tube DI into that carvin tube power amp.
punk isn't dead, it's always smelled that way.

"A perfection of means, and confusion of aims, seems to be our main problem."
-ae
Last edited by gumbilicious at Jun 30, 2011,
#3
Hey Gumbi,

Thanks for the reply... Thanks for the Carvin suggestion, that looks quite nice! I might have to try one of those.

I'm really not in a debate with you on most of this, and I prefer to avoid one. I never said I couldn't run through a power amp, I just haven't given it much thought. Right now I have 2 acoustic amps I can run in stereo, and the external outs don't have a very good sound, just my opinion. But a tube power amp might work out well if I can get some good speakers to go with it.

I also know the sound I'm looking for, and it isn't meant to be a clean acoustic, I am trying to get a more electric, compressed sound out of it. So an electric amp could work, but again, I haven't explored that route too much, and it would cost a lot more to get the amp(s) and cabs/speakers. I also have to say, I would rather send something to the mixer than rely on or mic a cabinet, and I honestly know it can be done. It doesn't have to be all tube either, I just want to add some tubes to the rig... that's really all it is.

So, the most economical solution for me is to work on the preamp section, and try to add something to the tone that I can send to both the house and, if necessary, my on-stage amps. That's what brought up the question of running 2 tube pre's back to back. Maybe I should just get another one and give it a shot, but that's what I was wondering and why. If you have any thoughts on that question, I'd sure appreciate it. Thanks for the help!
#4
Quote by cmstewart809
Hey Gumbi,

Thanks for the reply... Thanks for the Carvin suggestion, that looks quite nice! I might have to try one of those.

I'm really not in a debate with you on most of this, and I prefer to avoid one.


it just seemed like some conflicting conclusions, it was more like i was feeling that was part of the story or an incomplete thought.

lets put it another way: why would you feel running a tube amp through a mixer would defeat the purpose but a tube DI is more appropriate?

if you don't feel like getting into it, then i'll just give my classic advice: if you haven't tried it before then try a double blind and see if you notice any difference and make conclusions off your observations based on the double blind.

Quote by cmstewart809
I never said I couldn't run through a power amp, I just haven't given it much thought. Right now I have 2 acoustic amps I can run in stereo, and the external outs don't have a very good sound, just my opinion. But a tube power amp might work out well if I can get some good speakers to go with it.


that carvin should be stereo too, so a stereo cab or a couple of 2 way speaker cabs might work for ya with the carvin. people usually use a pretty stiff and sterile speaker for acoustic so as to rely on the acoustic for the dominate tone shaping of the signal.

Quote by cmstewart809
I also know the sound I'm looking for, and it isn't meant to be a clean acoustic, I am trying to get a more electric, compressed sound out of it. So an electric amp could work, but again, I haven't explored that route too much, and it would cost a lot more to get the amp(s) and cabs/speakers. I also have to say, I would rather send something to the mixer than rely on or mic a cabinet, and I honestly know it can be done. It doesn't have to be all tube either, I just want to add some tubes to the rig... that's really all it is.


sounds like you are after something rather unconventional. i'd take your acoustic rig to a guitar store like Sam Ash or Guitar Center and do straight comparisons to some of the stuff you mentioned (like a couple electric amps). even if this is cumbersome or too much equipment to haul around it'll at least tell ya if that is indeed the sound you are after. finding out electric amps won't/will work for ya will tell you much in your tone quest even if you never plan on buying them.

Quote by cmstewart809
So, the most economical solution for me is to work on the preamp section, and try to add something to the tone that I can send to both the house and, if necessary, my on-stage amps. That's what brought up the question of running 2 tube pre's back to back. Maybe I should just get another one and give it a shot, but that's what I was wondering and why. If you have any thoughts on that question, I'd sure appreciate it. Thanks for the help!


as stated above, if you can try this in a store before you buy it would be helpful. also, takamine seems to have some out with a product you may wanna take a look at:

http://www.takamine.com/electronics/cool_tube_preamp

lets you mix between a FET and a 12AU7 tube onboard.

also, if you have 2 amps (or are gonna run out to a board with multiple channels), i'd consider maybe running 1 signal with the tube preamp to one amp/input and 1 signal without the tube preamp to get a mix between both sounds. this may provide a very nice balance between the 2 sounds and can help ground any kinda more crazy acoustic tone.

btw, is there any clips of something similar you may be going for out there? i am a little at a loss as to what your end goal is.
punk isn't dead, it's always smelled that way.

"A perfection of means, and confusion of aims, seems to be our main problem."
-ae
Last edited by gumbilicious at Jul 3, 2011,
#5
Hey, thanks again,

Maybe you can educate me a bit on this since I have never tried a power amp with my set-up... but I thought you wouldn't be able to run a power amp directly into the soundboard. If I'm wrong on that assumption, let me know, but that's why I haven't gone in that direction. If you can, I'd like to know how it's done cause power amps, I thought, would produce a much more powerful signal than an unamped guitar would.

Here is an idea of the sound I want,. It's not it exactly, this is just to give you the general direction of what I'm looking for.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A1vg2HjNQh0

And I would like to go actually try out some gear, but since there's so much gear out there, I just thought I'd get some answers to narrow down my search. Let me know if you got anything else that can help.
#6
Quote by cmstewart809
Maybe you can educate me a bit on this since I have never tried a power amp with my set-up... but I thought you wouldn't be able to run a power amp directly into the soundboard. If I'm wrong on that assumption, let me know, but that's why I haven't gone in that direction. If you can, I'd like to know how it's done cause power amps, I thought, would produce a much more powerful signal than an unamped guitar would.


you are pretty much right. the speaker outs on a power amp would be hell on a board. but some power amps do provide line outs (which is pretty much outputs the signal that gets fed to it from the preamp with or without a power amp or cab emulator)

Quote by cmstewart809
Here is an idea of the sound I want,. It's not it exactly, this is just to give you the general direction of what I'm looking for.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A1vg2HjNQh0


wow, that guy is pretty damn good. looks like he is even bending the neck to get a 'trem bar' style effect. seems like he might be using a bit of effects on it (like tremelo right before the breakdown, and some reverb). it actually kinda sounds like this demo hear i almost posted last time.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Is9s9G4jllU

Quote by cmstewart809
And I would like to go actually try out some gear, but since there's so much gear out there, I just thought I'd get some answers to narrow down my search. Let me know if you got anything else that can help.


i still see a day at the shop being your best beat. try out a number of pups, effects pedals, amps and even other guitars they have and see if you can't figure out what'll give it to ya.
punk isn't dead, it's always smelled that way.

"A perfection of means, and confusion of aims, seems to be our main problem."
-ae