#1
This isn't a my-tone-sux-plz-help-me kind of post btw.

Essentially, my tone is good (to my ears, anyway) except with my thickest string. It sounds good when I'm playing heavy chords and such but when I go to play some faster parts, ala Thrash Metal and Death Metal, it gets quite 'loose' sounding. It's not that it's super muddy or unclear, it's just not quite as tight as the other bass strings.

Here's a list of stuff that I've done to sort it out a bit:

Tighter pickups (SD Blackouts AHB-3)
Tighter speaker (Celestion G12K-100)
Thinner strings (From 13-56 to 12-52)
Less bass and more mids (Treble 7, Mid 8, Bass 7)
A touch less gain (Set at 8)

I'm playing a baritone (27") ESP tuned to C standard through an all-tube Peavey 6505+ 112 Combo.

I might go down another gauge with my strings and tune to C# instead. I'd rather not tune my current set up to C# because, to me, it feels too stiff when I play.

I have heard that if you roll the gain back on the amp and push the preamp harder with a boost pedal to push it into 'full distortion' it tightens up the distortion; which I think is where my problem lies (and not so much with the EQ) if this is that case could someone tell me what type of boost pedal to get. I've seen some people say that a clean boost is best for a tube amp although I'm not sure if they were talking about a volume boost or a gain boost.

Also, would an all-tube boost pedal (like a Blackstar HT-Boost) be better than something like a Tubescreamer. I would rather have an all tube pedal to keep it more natural and this way I could swap out the preamp tubes of the pedal to match my amp - or is that a stupid idea?
#2
It sounds like you have everything figured out, just need a tubescreamer. Turn down gain as much as you are willing when running it with a boost. That will help maximize the tightness.

Try a Tung Sol RI in V1 of your Peavey.

Have you tried heavier strings? That would increase your tension. I use a .65 for drop B on my 27 scale.

I wouldnt go for an HT boost... it will probably have the reverse of the desired effect.
Last edited by cGoEcYk at Jan 8, 2014,
#3
Heavier string gauges can help in a lot of cases when your sound is loose and you are down tuned that much

Pull the gain down some. ON the 5150/6505 amps anything above 1/2 way gets loos/mushy/muddy

Don't get the HT pedal, get a Tubescreamer type pedal and use it as a boost (gain 0, Volume 10, tone to taste). Do this with the gain at about 1/2 and it will tighten up your sound a lot. You can also try an EQ pedal in the loop so you can adjust more frequencies independently
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#4
Quote by cGoEcYk

Try a Tung Sol RI in V1 of your Peavey.

Have you tried heavier strings? That would increase your tension. I use a .65 for drop B on my 27 scale.

I'll definitely try the Tung Sol RI. I was thinking about swapping all tube position with Tung Sol 12AX7s until I heard that they had a lot of treble. Just one of them should be alright though.

As for the strings, I'll go up to a 12-54 tuned to C set next time I need to change strings for a little more tension. I don't want to get too big because I not too keen on how they feel when tremolo picking.

Quote by Robbgnarly
Heavier string gauges can help in a lot of cases when your sound is loose and you are down tuned that much

Pull the gain down some. ON the 5150/6505 amps anything above 1/2 way gets loos/mushy/muddy

Don't get the HT pedal, get a Tubescreamer type pedal and use it as a boost (gain 0, Volume 10, tone to taste). Do this with the gain at about 1/2 and it will tighten up your sound a lot. You can also try an EQ pedal in the loop so you can adjust more frequencies independently

I don't think I'm tuned too low and, like I said, I'm only on 12-52 strings which is only a couple of sizes up from a standard set.

Would it be possible to use an EQ pedal as a boost? I've seen a couple of EQ pedals that have gain and volume controls, like the MXR 10-Band.
#5
You can use some EQ pedals as boosts, but using a Tubescreamer in the front of the amp will tighten the tone, add sustain and give you a fatter/thicker tone. EQ pedals work best in the FX loop which will raise the volume more than help tighten the preamp gain.

Most 5150/6505 users agree a TS pedal is a must with those amps
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#6
Get a Digitech Bad Monkey and be done with it. And use the level max gain off settings.

And as said above, 6505 has way more gain that its really able to handle. Dont turn it much over half-way even without boost. Even if it wouldnt turn into mush still the more gain you use, the more punch you have but less tight you get. Less gain gives more tightness, at the cost of punch but thats why modern metal albums double track the guitars to get the punch back.

ESP LTD F-50 + Tonezone
Cort EVL-Z4 + X2N
Cort EVL-K47B

Marshall Valvestate 8100
Randall RG1503
Bugera 333
Peavey Rockmaster preamp

Line6 Pod X3
#7
Thanks for the feedback.

I'll have a look at some Tubescreamer and Bad Monkey comparisons to see which I like best, unless you can tell me why a Bad Monkey would be better than a Tubescreamer.
#8
Quote by MilesJeffery
Thanks for the feedback.

I'll have a look at some Tubescreamer and Bad Monkey comparisons to see which I like best, unless you can tell me why a Bad Monkey would be better than a Tubescreamer.

I have a Bad Monkey and it is OK for a $50 new pedal, But I also have a GFS Greenie which is similar to a Ibanez TS-9/TS808 which was $50 new. I like the GFS much better and it boost the level much better than the Bad Monkey.

A huge positive the Bad Monkey does have is it has a Bass and a Treble knob and most TS type pedals have a single tone Knob. The Hardwire CM-2 is a better version of the Bad Monkey and used it can be bought for $40.

The Joyo Vintage Overdrive is a TS-9 clone that is really cheap in the UK and would be a good pedal to get if your not sure yet
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
Last edited by Robbgnarly at Jan 8, 2014,
#9
Quote by MilesJeffery
Thanks for the feedback.

I'll have a look at some Tubescreamer and Bad Monkey comparisons to see which I like best, unless you can tell me why a Bad Monkey would be better than a Tubescreamer.


Bad Monkey IS a tubescreamer variant with some changes. Biggest thing what separates it from actual Ibanez TS or Maxon OD is that it has EQ instead of Tone control, making it more versatile if you want. But its still tubescreamer at heart, same midrange hump and bass cut and tightening effect. Plus its cheaper than Ibanez or Maxon.

ESP LTD F-50 + Tonezone
Cort EVL-Z4 + X2N
Cort EVL-K47B

Marshall Valvestate 8100
Randall RG1503
Bugera 333
Peavey Rockmaster preamp

Line6 Pod X3
Last edited by MaaZeus at Jan 8, 2014,
#10
Aargh!

So now it's between the Bad Monkey and the CM-2. I'm looking at some comparisons now.
#11
Quote by MilesJeffery
Aargh!

So now it's between the Bad Monkey and the CM-2. I'm looking at some comparisons now.


Unless I am mistaken Digitech CM-2 is basically improved Bad Monkey, Classic setting being the Bad Monkey and Modified being something else. Dont take my word on that though.

ESP LTD F-50 + Tonezone
Cort EVL-Z4 + X2N
Cort EVL-K47B

Marshall Valvestate 8100
Randall RG1503
Bugera 333
Peavey Rockmaster preamp

Line6 Pod X3
#12
What would be the difference of using the Hardwire TL-2 as a boost instead of the CM-2?
#13
Quote by MilesJeffery
Aargh!

So now it's between the Bad Monkey and the CM-2. I'm looking at some comparisons now.

I would get the CM-2 and I own a Bad Monkey

Don't get me wrong, the bad monkey is a great pedal if your on a really tight budget or you are just exploring OD pedals. But if the CM-2 is in your budget, get it.

The diffrences in the 2 pedals is the modern switch and the CM-2 is true bypass while the BM is buffered. The CM-2 also seems to have more volume on tap than the BM
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#14
Quote by MilesJeffery
What would be the difference of using the Hardwire TL-2 as a boost instead of the CM-2?

OD's work much better at being boost pedals than distortions pedals do.

If you have a decent tone from your amp already get an OD if you hate the gain of your am, a distortion pedal would be better
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#15
Quote by MilesJeffery
What would be the difference of using the Hardwire TL-2 as a boost instead of the CM-2?


Cant say for sure but generally dedicated distortion pedals dont work as boosts as well as Overdrive pedals. There are some exceptions but generally you are then looking for some specific sound that only the distortion pedal can provide together with amp distortion. (like Boss HM-2 or Metalzone) If its tightness you are after stick to tubescreamer variants or other overdrives with similar effect.

ESP LTD F-50 + Tonezone
Cort EVL-Z4 + X2N
Cort EVL-K47B

Marshall Valvestate 8100
Randall RG1503
Bugera 333
Peavey Rockmaster preamp

Line6 Pod X3
#17
Quote by MaaZeus
Unless I am mistaken Digitech CM-2 is basically improved Bad Monkey, Classic setting being the Bad Monkey and Modified being something else. Dont take my word on that though.


this is correct. the mod switch adds more gain similar to one of the mods you can do to a tubescreamer (keeley I believe). it also runs at a higher voltage for better sound. I have one and it is an awesome pedal.
#18
Quote by monwobobbo
this is correct. the mod switch adds more gain similar to one of the mods you can do to a tubescreamer (keeley I believe). it also runs at a higher voltage for better sound. I have one and it is an awesome pedal.



Are the differences when you run one as clean boost in modified mode?

ESP LTD F-50 + Tonezone
Cort EVL-Z4 + X2N
Cort EVL-K47B

Marshall Valvestate 8100
Randall RG1503
Bugera 333
Peavey Rockmaster preamp

Line6 Pod X3
#19
Quote by MaaZeus
Are the differences when you run one as clean boost in modified mode?


hmmm.... never tried that guessing it might be a little louder though. i'll give that a shot and let you know. the switch changes the gain structure for added distortion.
#20
Does the switch make much difference?

For now I think I've sorted my tone until I can get an overdrive pedal. I've turned the mids up to 9 and pulled back the presence to tame some of the added harshness. I don't know if it's just my ears but the bass control doesn't seem to make a noticeable difference when you move it between 6 to 9/10.
#21
I have the bass up pretty high on my BM because of the bass cut associated with TS pedals.
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#22
Quote by MaaZeus
Are the differences when you run one as clean boost in modified mode?


tried this out the other day and with the gain down to 0 there is no difference between modes for clean boost.
#23
Try dropping the bass and increasing the mids a bit more. You might also try using an EQ pedal for a bit finer control. Thing is, there's no way that combo can ever reproduce any of the bottom end fundamentals that you're putting out. All you'll ever hear are the harmonics, and while those *indicate* the bottom notes, that speaker is going to be dropping off drastically (and virtually disappear) under about 110Hz.

To give you an idea of why that's significant, a standard low E is 82Hz and the C# below that is 69Hz, the C is 65Hz. That's why your bottom string is disappearing, and changing string gauges, etc., won't change that.

But your amp is using significant wads of power *trying* to reproduce those notes, so you may as well cut them back and allow the amp to use that power where it can actually move the speaker.

If you ever get to run that built-in DI out to a PA system with subs or to a serious power amp and some full-range bass speakers, you'll suddenly find that your guitar (and the preamp portion of your 6505) were putting out those frequencies all along, and the sound of your guitar will change drastically.

But for now; it's not the guitar or the pickups or the strings or any of that. It's the amp and the speaker.
Last edited by dspellman at Jan 10, 2014,
#24
Yeah, I've just pulled the bass back and upped the mids.

Thanks for explaining that. It makes sense when you put it that way.
#25
Quote by monwobobbo
tried this out the other day and with the gain down to 0 there is no difference between modes for clean boost.


Thanks! So for me there wouldnt be much sense changing Bad Monkey to CM-2 since I almost never use it for its distortion.

ESP LTD F-50 + Tonezone
Cort EVL-Z4 + X2N
Cort EVL-K47B

Marshall Valvestate 8100
Randall RG1503
Bugera 333
Peavey Rockmaster preamp

Line6 Pod X3
#26
Quote by MaaZeus
Thanks! So for me there wouldnt be much sense changing Bad Monkey to CM-2 since I almost never use it for its distortion.

Unless you want a true bypass pedal. The CM-2 is True bypass the BM is buffered and does affect the tone a little when it is off. Not a lot, but a little
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#27
Quote by Robbgnarly
Unless you want a true bypass pedal. The CM-2 is True bypass the BM is buffered and does affect the tone a little when it is off. Not a lot, but a little


it's also a way better built pedal and the EQ is better than the BM as well. given the choice I'd go with the CM-2 if you gig. besides options are good. I use the mod gain with my clean channel to get a SRV tone at low volume levels and it works for that pretty good.
#28
Quote by Robbgnarly
Unless you want a true bypass pedal. The CM-2 is True bypass the BM is buffered and does affect the tone a little when it is off. Not a lot, but a little


Well... Whenever I have the Bad Monkey plugged in always on. Though now that I modded my Valveking its seeing less use.

ESP LTD F-50 + Tonezone
Cort EVL-Z4 + X2N
Cort EVL-K47B

Marshall Valvestate 8100
Randall RG1503
Bugera 333
Peavey Rockmaster preamp

Line6 Pod X3
Last edited by MaaZeus at Jan 11, 2014,
#29
Quote by MaaZeus
Well... Whenever I have the Bad Monkey is plugged in always on. Though now that I modded my Valveking its seeing less use.


gets plenty of use with my VK. it's a thought and an option if you decide to go that route. you could probably get a used one cheap