#1
hey there guys!

Quick question, what is the best overdrive pedal to use infront of a high gain amp? I want to tighten up the sound for live gigs and also get a little more. Any suggestions?
i'm playing a jackson rr1 through an engl fireball.

second guitarist uses a zakk wild overdrive through his powerball and it sound really good.

was just wondering if there are other good overdrive pedals out there.

ah yes we're doing some old thrashmetal stuff:

https://www.facebook.com/bloodlinerofficial/app_2405167945
my gear:

guitar: Schecter c1 classic
amp: Engl fireball
box: Engl v30 4x12
effects: g-major
in future: ESP eclipse, PRS Custom 24...
#2
The typical answer is really any type of OD808 or clone - Maxon OD808, Ibanez TS8, TS9, and really countless others made by just about every company.

You can go expensive or cheap (Joyo Vintage Overdrive, Digitech Bad Monkey).

Do you want a single tone knob or Bass and Treble knobs?

For something that doesn't cut the bass and is more transparent try a Cochrane Timmy or a Sparkle Drive.

Airis Effects makes boosts specifically for High Gain amps that may be worth a shot.
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#3
wow thaks a lot!!

i actually wana go with an expensive one, if it's worth up the money!
thought that the pro tone dead horse sounds really cool - but im not sure if its just used for some modern kind of metal...
it doesn't matter if single tone knobs or not...

the Airis Effects sound great - anyone used them already?? are they handy for some thrash??
my gear:

guitar: Schecter c1 classic
amp: Engl fireball
box: Engl v30 4x12
effects: g-major
in future: ESP eclipse, PRS Custom 24...
#4
I've found that the Boss SD-1 or clones of it actually do a better job at getting that classic thrash tone than a Tubescreamer variant.

The Boss SD-1 was actually used by a lot of old thrash bands and the main difference between it and a TS is that it uses asymmetrical clipping as opposed to symmetrical. What that translates to is a slightly "rougher/grindier/raspier" edge to your distortion. It is a subtle difference, but it is noticeable.

Now, having said all of that, I'd recommend an MXR M77 "Custom Badass OD." It is based on the SD-1, but it is less noisy and also features a lot more adjustment than the standard level/tone/gain knobs. It has a 100hz knob (bass) as well as a tone knob which controls the upper frequencies. It also has a "bump" button which shifts the whole EQ downward to emphasize more lows and mids. I have had one for quite a while now and find the adjustability very useful, especially going from one guitar to another. I finally sold my TS-9 because it wasn't getting used, if that tells you anything.
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#5
Another vote for Boss SD-1. Suits Thrash like a glove.

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#6
so you have two guitarists using od pedals poked into high gain amps. can you guys hear what notes you are playing? the amps alone aren't giving you enough grind? or are you after a tone that engl doesn't provide?

i used to use a DOD overdrive + in front of an amp that had 2 clean channels (ampeg v4 stack) for slayer, exodus type stuff. i was the only guitarist. that old peg didn't have od so i had to use a pedal.

fwiw, here i am going yet again against internet herd dynamics, with two guitarists you need to be cleaner then you think otherwise your sound turns to mush. especially with thrash, death, grindcore, etc... the guitar tone at the audience level can sound real muddy.

imho, i would suggest dialing in the od channels of those engl's and working as a team to get a good sound rather then going straight for the stomp boxes. there are many legendary bands who go directly into the amp and get busy.
Last edited by ad_works at Sep 14, 2015,
#7
thanks a lot for all your suggestions so far!!

well i don't know - with the zakk pedal my band-colleague really can get a killer sound out of his powerball.
if you listen to our latest gig you can here during the soloparts, that the rhythm-guitar should get some extra boost..it sounds a little muddy i guess:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r-Yq6KSdymQ
my gear:

guitar: Schecter c1 classic
amp: Engl fireball
box: Engl v30 4x12
effects: g-major
in future: ESP eclipse, PRS Custom 24...
#8
Digitech Bad Monkey. Best OD for the money and one of the better ones I've tried period. A Maxon is a waste of money in my honest opinion.
Gear:

Fender Strat
PRS SE Custom 24
Agile AL-3100

Jet City JCA50H
Randall 2x12 wV30s
#9
i say timmy.
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#10
Quote by KailM
(a) I've found that the Boss SD-1 or clones of it actually do a better job at getting that classic thrash tone than a Tubescreamer variant.

(b) The Boss SD-1 was actually used by a lot of old thrash bands and the main difference between it and a TS is that it uses asymmetrical clipping as opposed to symmetrical. What that translates to is a slightly "rougher/grindier/raspier" edge to your distortion. It is a subtle difference, but it is noticeable.

(c) Now, having said all of that, I'd recommend an MXR M77 "Custom Badass OD." It is based on the SD-1, but it is less noisy and also features a lot more adjustment than the standard level/tone/gain knobs. It has a 100hz knob (bass) as well as a tone knob which controls the upper frequencies. It also has a "bump" button which shifts the whole EQ downward to emphasize more lows and mids. I have had one for quite a while now and find the adjustability very useful, especially going from one guitar to another. I finally sold my TS-9 because it wasn't getting used, if that tells you anything.


(a) Agreed.

(b) While the topology is virtually identical to a tubescreamer, a lot of the component values are different- the asymmetrical thing probably/possibly does make a slight difference, but so do the other component values. I'm not sure you could say it's only the clipping which is the difference.

(c) I haven't tried it but I know it gets a good rep. It's probably worth a try if you're willing to pay more. The achilles heel with the sd1 is that some models have noticeable bleed in bypass, which can be annoying- it's solved by putting another buffer or buffered pedal in front of it, but if you don't have one to hand that's additional expense and bother.

Another option, if you're mainly using it for rhythm tones, is maybe a more transparent-style overdrive with less emphasis on the mids- timmy, klon, blues drive/screamin blues, bluesbreaker, something like that. though if your tone is already a bit scooped then that might be too much. It's pretty dependent on which amp and guitar you're using and how you have it dialled in. Of course, you can tweak how you have the thing dialled in to suit the pedal.

Quote by dickeskind

well i don't know - with the zakk pedal my band-colleague really can get a killer sound out of his powerball.


Far as I'm aware the ZW is basically an SD1, so that kind of ties in with what we're saying

Have you tried it with your amp? Might be worth a try to be sure it sounds good with yours as well. But yeah, if you know it's the one you want and you don't mind paying for it, by all means get it. I doubt you'll go too far wrong with it and it might minimise risk (while tons of pedals are clones, they don't always sound 100% identical either, for whatever reason).
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Last edited by Dave_Mc at Sep 14, 2015,
#11
I like the ZW-44 but that is the only OD pedal I own so I don't know any better. haha
ESP Iron Cross Sig model, Fernandes RetroRocket Sunburst, Taylor 214CE, Peavey XXX Super 40, DimeBag Crybaby from Hell, Zakk Wylde Overdrive, MXR Chorus, and a Flashback Delay and Looper.
#12
The Duncan 805 Overdrive has active tone controls (3 of em!) that can solve some of the eq problems inherent in the classic OD design.
Dave @ Seymour Duncan
#13
Quote by ad_works
so you have two guitarists using od pedals poked into high gain amps. can you guys hear what notes you are playing? the amps alone aren't giving you enough grind? or are you after a tone that engl doesn't provide?

i used to use a DOD overdrive + in front of an amp that had 2 clean channels (ampeg v4 stack) for slayer, exodus type stuff. i was the only guitarist. that old peg didn't have od so i had to use a pedal.

fwiw, here i am going yet again against internet herd dynamics, with two guitarists you need to be cleaner then you think otherwise your sound turns to mush. especially with thrash, death, grindcore, etc... the guitar tone at the audience level can sound real muddy.

imho, i would suggest dialing in the od channels of those engl's and working as a team to get a good sound rather then going straight for the stomp boxes. there are many legendary bands who go directly into the amp and get busy.



You're missing the point of the overdrive here. It isn't to get distortion, it is to tighten up the sound of the amp, cutting bass, boosting mids, and pressing the input a bit harder to get a tighter response. Most all modern metal tones and many older sounds relied on this method to keep the sound clear for riffage and leads.

Typically you turn down the preamp gain just a bit on the amp to compensate for the increase from the pedal, but the idea is to use max level and min overdrive from the pedal. This gives you some seriously tight and aggressive tone.

TS, either a Tubescreamer (or derivative, I personally like the Hardwire CM-2, but any will be fine) or the SD-1 as everyone else has said. I recently picked up a Fulltone Fulldrive 2, which has several options for overdrive or clean boosting. If you are looking to do a bit of experimenting with what kinds of sounds you can get, that pedal is awesome. It has a Tubescreamer-style option, a more flat EQ Tubescreamer option, and then a clean boost option, with a switchable boost for each of those modes that can add an adjustable amount of gain for whatever your needs may be.

I find with my Mesa that I like it set best as a neutral boost, and I keep the level high with the overdrive at a minimum, and use the switchable boost to get some awesome solo tones.

Just another thing to think about, but if you decide on the tried-and-true route, I'm sure you will get good results
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#14
+ 1 to the boss sd-1. I use to use one and I loved it for thrash

by the way your band kicks ass man
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It is NOT trash metal it is tHrash metal...get it right
#16
I also use an SD-1. It definitely has a slightly 'grindier' sound as a result of the asymmetrical clipping that lends itself to metal. I've also modded mine by removing one of the capacitors to open up the sound, not that there is anything wrong with how it sounds stock.
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