Hi all,

So recently, I've been trying to get used to recording guitar covers by recording audio and video separately. However, the issue I've been running into recently, is that I've had a hard time trying to get the G5 to produce the proper high-gain distortion sounds I've been trying to dial in, especially artist-related patches.
Here's the gear I'm using at the moment:
-Ibanez S521 Mol modified with SD JB (SH-4) and Jazz (SH-1N) pickups as well as Grover locking tuners.
-Zoom G5
-Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 Audio Interface
-Yorkville Cables
-Shure GLXD16 Wireless System
-Fender Mustang I
-Randall RM50 Combo Tube Amplifier

Typically, whenever I plug in my Zoom G5 into a direct interface or a solid-state amp, a high-gain distortion I'd prefer to have would be an overdrive pedal followed by a crunch gain amp. (E.g. Tube Screamer + MS Crunch, etc.) However, whenever I try to use the same gain setting on my tube amplifier, the gain settings are so overkill that I have to reduce the gain way down to a basic overdrive setting in order to create a similar result.

Exhibit A: Galneryus Patch would look something like this when connected to a DI or a solid state:
ZNR -> Comp -> Tube Screamer (Gain 36%, Tone 64%) -> Tangerine (Gain 64%, MS Drive Cabinet)

And that same patch would need to be adjusted to this when connected to my Randall RM50 to make it sound similar without any gain issues:
ZNR -> Comp -> Booster (Gain 64%, Tone 70%) -> Tube Screamer (Gain 72%, Tone 64%)

Exhibit B: Paul Gilbert Patch when connected DI:
ZNR -> Comp -> OD-1 (Gain 36%, Tone 72%) -> MS Crunch (Gain 64%, MS Drive Cabinet)

Paul Gilbert Patch when connected to my Randall RM50:
ZNR -> Comp -> Booster (Gain 64%, Tone 74%) -> OD-1 (Gain 68%, Tone 72%)

As well, I've had a hard time trying to create good sound patches for the following artists:
-Steve Vai
-Yngwie Malmsteen
-Takayoshi Ohmura
-Norifumi Shima
-Leda (Far East Dizain Patch)

The only patches I didn't have to modify a lot was Leda's Deluhi and Undivide patches. (The only issue being that two-hand tapping will not sound clean for me since I have a significant loss of gain on the two patches):
Pitch Shifter (Full Step Down OR 2 Steps Down, depending on tuning) -> Vox Wah -> ZNR -> Comp -> Booster (Gain 64%, Tone 72%) -> OD-1 (Gain 84%, Tone 72%) -> Phaser -> Room Reverb

So the question is, is there a way for me to create a really good metal tone that would sound really nice and at the same time, would require minimal adjustment when switching over from DI to Tube Amp and vice-versa? I do a lot of sweep pickings and two-hand tapping so I will require a careful gain adjustment on each patch to ensure that I don't push either of my gear to its limits.

Please and thanks,
DI and often solid state amps do a great job of just accepting the signal and amplifying it. Tube amps like your RM50 generally do not like modelling, especially if you're putting the unit in front of the amp (Guitar > G5 > Amp Input). All the preamp wizardry of the RM50 is happening to your entire signal, including your amp models. Really you're stacking your digital amp models and distortions with another amp model, the RM50. So as you drive the input of the amp harder as it tries to work with your G5 signal, it will distort more and you'll have much a different sound then DI/SS would give you. Amp models in the effects loop of a tube amp do work a bit better, because the signal is mostly just amplified and not shaped the preamp. But...

Why are you using the G5's dirt when the RM50 should get you to metal tones and then some by itself? I say ditch the G5 dirt/amp sims and put the G5 in the effects loop of the RM50 for delay, wah, comp, boost, mods, etc. Get a tubescreamer-like overdrive standalone stomp box and put it in the front of the amp. So Guitar > TS > Amp input. Amp send > G5 > Amp return.

I use my G3 in much the same way. I have it in the effects loop for delay, verb, noise gate, EQ, and pitch shifting. But my dirt comes from my VOX amp and pedals.

I'd suggest having patches for DI and another set of patches for the same sounds for the RM50. But I think you'll like the RM50's help with the gain more than the DI sound.
Last edited by Will Lane at Jul 18, 2015,
The reason why I put the G5 between the guitar and tube amp is because I use the pitch shifter to artificially drop-tune my guitar at the start of the chain so that I can play the guitar as if it was in a lower tuning. I do this because I only have one guitar in my possession and it'd take me a longer time trying to set up different strings every time I do guitar covers for YouTube as compared to artificially drop-tuning the guitar on my Zoom G5.
I really wish I could invest money on a Maxon Overdrive, a wah, a Digitech Drop and a Compressor; however I just don't have the money to afford the expensive gear right now.
Right. Well you can find tubescreamer clones for like $30 USD. The Digitech Drop, not so much. Have you tried the detuning in the effects loop? If there are no tracking issues, you should be able to detune and it not glitch out on you.

I'd say that if you're going to have the detuning right after the guitar, it's best to just go DI. For cases where you don't have to detune or at least not extensively, use the RM50 with the G5 in the loop for mods. The RM50 should get you needed dirt levels, an overdrive just helps. Compressors and Wahs still work in the effects loop.
Last edited by Will Lane at Jul 18, 2015,
What's your personal opinion on artificial drop-tuning VS re-stringing the guitar every time? I am currently using D'addario 10-46 strings in a standard tuning, and I just formed a power metal band in my university. I'm mostly into playing songs that are in half-step-down tuning, and mostly am influenced by Galneryus, Stratovarius, Paul Gilbert, and Yngwie Malmsteen.

Also, it'd really help if someone can help me make good patches on my Zoom G5 for the following artists:
-Steve Vai
-Yngwie Malmsteen
-Takayoshi Ohmura
-Norifumi Shima
-Leda (Far East Dizain Patch)
If you're going between standard, 1/2 down, 1 down, and drop d, I don't think you need to restring your guitar or use artificial detuning. 10's are reasonable for those tunings. Drop C is okay, but you might start getting flabby past that.

For those individual artist patches, try looking up what gear they use and see what the G5 can emulate. Generally, metal tones involve an amp that is set to a thick crunch, boosted by an overdrive (why I suggested a TS with the RM50).

For example: http://www.premierguitar.com/articles/16515 Yngwie uses Marshalls plus an OD and some mod effects. So try a crunchy Marshall setting, boost it with an OD, and put a delay and such after. c: Also he apparently uses(d) 8-46 gauge strings. Super light to a little heavy.
Last edited by Will Lane at Jul 18, 2015,
Have you considered an MS-50 for your drop tuning, and maybe distortion stomps for in front of the tube amp and the G5 for your FX loop?

I've got 2 MS-50s (for different rigs) and I paid less than $80 each for them.
I've actually had a bad experience with cheap Zoom effects pedals before (G2.1nu I used to have before actually lasted less than one year before I had to buy the Zoom G5.), so I really don't know if an MS-50's that reliable enough to do the job.
In case you're still monitoring this thread...

The MS-50 uses many of the same models as the G5; it just can't run as many models at the same time. If all you're using it for is detuning, you'll be fine--it's the same detuning model. It's a tough pedal (built like a tank), but be careful with the display--just like the display on the G5. If a tank's Achilles heel is it's underside, then the current generation Zoom pedals Achilles heel is their LCD displays.
Last edited by SpeedSterHR at Aug 20, 2015,