#1
I'm sorry if this question had been asked before, and I'm just being a nuisance, but I couldn't find anything about it on the site.

So, here's the deal.

I have two electric guitars, both with the factory pickups in them (I haven't changed anything in them, except for getting heavier gauge strings on them):

-Ibanez RG470 (Tuned to Drop C)
-Ibanez RG370DXZ (Tuned to D Standard, and then a quarter step down- what I play Pantera with)

I casually play a (very) little bit of pop punk and punk rock, a bit of alt rock, a lot of modern (2000s) hard rock, and thrash metal.

I have a couple different amps (one tube, one modelling), and a few different heavy distortion pedals I use.

Also, please note: All my guitars have floyd rose-like tremolos. Meaning I don't really want to change the tunings on them more than necessary.

Now, before everyone starts telling me this thread should be in the electric guitar section, I'll get to why I am posting in the first place.

I have been asked (and am not in a good position to refuse) to play in a setting where I can't bring use an amp, due to space and sound issues. I can use a small pedalboard, but from there I will need to plug directly into a PA system.

The problem I have with this is the style of music I have to play: lighter alt/pop rock, and some pop punk. I normally would use a couple of presets on my modelling amp to do this (yes I know, that's not really ideal, but hey, I work with what I have). Only using pedals, I'm not really sure how to create the right type of sound. I've been messing around with them, and all the distortion I'm getting is too heavy.

In addition to the distortion pedals I have, I also have a compressor/sustainer, and an overdrive pedal. I mostly play rhythm, so I don't have any of the other major effect pedals.

My question is: how do you get a light, clean, distortion sound?

Here are some songs with the type of tone I want (yes, I know it's nearly impossible to sound just like any given song, but I'll settle for just sounding somewhere in the general area).

Better Now-Collective Soul


Runaway Train-Soul Asylum -just the chorus on this one

Slide-Goo Goo Dolls


Wherever You will Go-The Calling

The Reason-Hoobastank
#2
Can you use something like Bias or Amplitube mobile? Using just pedals isn't usually how you get a guitar sound. You need something to simulate an amp. If you are going the pedal route, you need a preamp with a cabinet sim. You can try something one of the Tech 21 Sansamp models or a multi-fx unit.
#3
I'd look at a POD HD500x. Full effect, amp, and cab simulation with direct out. What's your budget?
Guitars:
Jackson Kelly KE3 - MIJ (Distortion/Jazz)
Jackson DKMGT Dinky (EMG 81/85)
ESP E-II Eclipse Custom (JB/'59)
ESP LTD EC-1001FR (EMG 81/60)
Fender MIM Strat

Amps:
Mesa/Boogie Dual Rectifier Roadster 212
Laney IronHeart IRT-Studio
Peavey Vypyr 30
Peavey ReValver Amp Sims
TOOOO many T.C. Electronic Pedals. . .
#5
Not to say "f*** em' for not letting you use an amp" but if you're playing in a band situation (with a LOUD acoustic drumkit), probably at fairly loud gig volumes..when will be a small amp on stage ever be an issue?
I recently saw a pianist singing, with a bassist, which would be understandable to turn away an amp..but otherwise :?:

But something like a HD500, Digitech 1101, 11R would all be good ideas.
#6
If you need a solution on the cheap, check out Joyo pedals. They have a bunch of different amp sim pedals (supposedly "based" off of the Tech21 pedals). The JF-16 British Sound may be a good fit for what you want. They also have a Vox (AC Tone) and Fender (American) that may work. I've never used them but they are supposed to be used instead of the preamp on your amp and can do direct into the PA/mixer. They're $31 on Amazon.
Guitars:
Jackson Kelly KE3 - MIJ (Distortion/Jazz)
Jackson DKMGT Dinky (EMG 81/85)
ESP E-II Eclipse Custom (JB/'59)
ESP LTD EC-1001FR (EMG 81/60)
Fender MIM Strat

Amps:
Mesa/Boogie Dual Rectifier Roadster 212
Laney IronHeart IRT-Studio
Peavey Vypyr 30
Peavey ReValver Amp Sims
TOOOO many T.C. Electronic Pedals. . .