#1
Hi Guys,

Right from the start, I know almost nothing about guitar teck, so please forgive me !!

I'm also fairly new to playing Guitar and mostly riff Black Sabbath. LOVE BLACK SABBATH !!

I've got a well setup Gibson SG standard.

I've owned a few different small combo amps from Cube.

I thought I'd move into the 'big League' the other day and bought a Vox AC4C1 amp. The amp is fantastic, deep base and glass like treble, it sounds lovely and full.

I then bought a Vox Tonelab ST thinking it would be every pedal I'd ever need in one box. The problem was that after an hour of trying everything, the Tonelab just seemed to kill the tone of my Vox AC4. Maybe it's my total lack of knowledge, but I'd have thought that after an hour I'd be able to get some of the base I know my amp has back, but no I got all sorts of sounds from the Tonelab, but it just seemed to kill the clarity of the AC4. Yes I did set the Tonelab to 'V'.

Having looked around the net, some players say to buy real individual pedals as combo pedals are not always the right thing.

Before I rush out to my music store and buy (waste money on) even more single pedals, can anybody advise me on what to do at this point?

Thank you for any help.
#2
Firstly, the AC4 is quite a ways away from anything I would use for Sabbath tones or metal tones in general. It is just not that voicing. Also, are you running amp sims from the Tonelab into the amp? If so, you are stacking "guitar-voiced" simulations into an amp that is already "guitar-voiced", one that is not meant to handle that kind of signal. If you are doing it that way, then I suggest you listen to the Tonelab through headphones, as you just need to be able to hear the signal if the Tonelab is doing all the distortion and amp work.
Last edited by Will Lane at Jul 29, 2016,
#3
If you're looking for the Sabbath tone in a pedal check out Catalinbread Sabbra Cadabra pedal
Gear:
PRS SE Custom 22
Ibanez RG3EX1
Gibson Gary Moore BFG
1970s ASPEN Les Paul clone
Epiphone Annihilation V
Epiphone Robb Flynn Baritone V
Jackson Dominion Pro
-
Line 6 Vetta 2
Peavey 6534+
Big Crunch One Knob
Hovercraft Dwarvenaut 20
#4
Quote by Will Lane
Also, are you running amp sims from the Tonelab into the amp? If so, you are stacking "guitar-voiced" simulations into an amp that is already "guitar-voiced", one that is not meant to handle that kind of signal. If you are doing it that way, then I suggest you listen to the Tonelab through headphones, as you just need to be able to hear the signal if the Tonelab is doing all the distortion and amp work.


This. I don't have any experience with a Tonelab, but I've used other multi-effect pedals, and I assume it's similar. Most of them will have Effects, as well as Amp Models. The amp models are for when you don't have a real amp to work with, or maybe just a simple solid state amp. I used to use them for all of my tone back in the day when all I had for an amp was a crappy Crate half stack. Just clean channel and flat EQ on the amp, and ran a Digitech RP500 into it. But, you now have a real amp to work with. If the tonelab is like most other multifx, it should have an option to turn off amp/cab sims and use only effects. That's what you want. Then you use your actual amp as a base for your sound, and can use the delays, choruses, and distortion boxes in the tonelab. If the tonelab doesn't have an option to turn off amp models, an effect-only mode or whatever.... shit, I don't know.
Guitars
Schecter Hellraiser C-1FR, C-1 Classic, Hellraiser Hybrid Solo-II, Special Edition E-1FR-S
Orange Rockerverb 50 212
Basses
Yamaha RBX374 and Washburn MB-6
#5
Generally, MFX (Multi Effects) type pedals don't always do that well when it comes to dirty sounds (various types of gain like distortion, fuzz, etc.).
Some do, some don't.
When I had a Digitech Hardwire TL-2 going into my AC30, I could get some decent Sabbath tones.
I dunno how the AC4 will do though.
One thing I have rarely seen mentioned though is that there are several Sabbath tunes where Tony Iommi double tracks his guitar with one track being clean and another track being really fuzzy.
I only found out about it because the stereo in my truck was fucked up and did some weird shit and I could sometimes hear the separate tracks.
I was only able to hear that on the original CDs though, not my Mix CDs made from MP3 files.
#6
Thanks guys so far. I'll make some calls today and see if I can get to a good store to try pedals.
#7
Quote by sunbeam.ti
Thanks guys so far. I'll make some calls today and see if I can get to a good store to try pedals.
If you are going the individual pedal route, the Sabbra Cadabra is a good option.
Last edited by Will Lane at Jul 30, 2016,
#8
Quote by Will Lane
If you are going the individual pedal route, the Sabbra Cadabra is a good option.


Apart from being an horrifically expensive pedal, I've read it is very hard to set up and not very flexible??
I have no problem in buying it if it works.

I have booked a slot in our local big Guitar shop tomorrow to look at, probably, Boss pedals with my own guitar. The shop has an AC4 and a booth so I can go mad. I'm aiming for an over drive and chorus pedal. I've already got a Rat II fuzz, not sure if it will be OK ???

I was mis-sold the Rat II as I bought it over the phone as an over-drive pedal months ago. But reading up now, it seems Iommi uses a fuzz as well, so maybe it will be OK amongst the board?
Last edited by sunbeam.ti at Jul 30, 2016,
#9
Have you tried your Rat with it yet? Rats sound good with AC30s and AC15s so if the AC4 has a similar kind of sound to those it should work well with your Rat
Last edited by WeZ-84 at Jul 30, 2016,
#10
To be honest, no.

The Rat didn't give me what I wanted when I got it and it ran its battery down when I was told it doesn't if it's not used, so I got peed off with it.

But I'm going to give it a second chance once I've bought a mains transformer for it, probably tomorrow when I maybe buy some more pedals.

I've only had the AC4 a few days, so not had time to sort it all out. I think it's probably worth getting a cheap 9v battery now, seeing as I'm standing in a supermarket as I type :-)
#11
1) get rid of the tone lab and avoid multi-fx pedals for now. Cheaper multi-fx units suck tone and over complicate things. Never allow anything in your chain that sucks tone.
2) buy individual pedals and you need to test them to see if they work with your amp - not every drive or fuzz pedal works well with every amp, so do your research and test the best contenders.
3) the first two pedals you need are 1) a good reverb and 2) a drive pedal - those alone will do wonders. For reverb the hall of fame from TC is good. For drive pedals, it depends what you need - xotic pedals are excellent, but expensive. If cost is an issue buy second hand.
#12
The RAT will give you a somewhat similar sound I would think, as far as distortion levels go. But again the AC4 is not the first amp I think of to get Sabbath tones, distortion pedal or not. The point of the Sabbra Cadabra is, roughly, to be Black Sabbath-in-a-box. So it is designed to have that sound no matter what amp you plug it in to.
showcases the pedal used with a Fender DRRI, again not an amp that I would view as having the Sabbath sound, but the pedal works it. It is not intended to be flexible because it is getting you that sound, nothing else. But I am sure if you work with it some you can get a variety of tones. Also, good stuff is not always cheap.

The RAT is not really a fuzz, but rather a distortion with fuzz tendencies. I would try experimenting with that first to see if you can get satisfying tones. And about the battery draining- by "not used" do you mean just turned off? Because the batteries in most pedals drain if there is a cable plugged into the input, it does not matter if the pedal is on or off.

The power supply for the RAT is kind of odd, in comparison to most pedals. It takes an 1/8 TS input, + tip. So get this. The battery will work though for testing with the AC4.
Last edited by Will Lane at Jul 30, 2016,
#13
The Tonelab works really well into a FRFR speaker (PA system), not well into the front of an amp with a lot of character all it's own. Get a nice OD pedal (OCD, Ratt, TS9) and run that into the front of your amp. Sabbath will come out if you got the chops.

Save the Tonelab for quiet practice or experimenting with effects, not into the front of your amp.
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis

Guthrie on tone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmohdG9lLqY
#14
OK guys, I nicked the battery out of the smoke alarm to test the rat It actually was OK on the AC4. It seemed to rob some of the bass, but the sound was good and clear, nothing like the Tonelab !!

The biggest shop in this area (the PMT chain) does have the Hall of Fame, but not in my local store, so that maybe a problem? They don't sell the xotic at all, so more problems. They do however sell lots of Boss pedals! would Boss be OK?

Should I just buy the Sabbra Cadabra on mail order and be done with it, or do I still need to make sure it works with my amp?

I am happy to drive all day if it means I'll get a pedal that gives me what I want. I know of a fantastic shop 3 hours from me that does have the Sabbra Cadabra , is it worth doing the 6 hour round trip to test it?
Last edited by sunbeam.ti at Jul 30, 2016,
#15
OK, so I have just read all about Boss !!!!!
Basically NO !!!!!

My problem now is I don't know what I'm talking about and sitting in a booth with just the pedals the shop can offer does not make me feel I'm getting the best for me ???

I know I want a HEAVY bass sound, but also clear with distortion that's not all fuzzy, don't now if that helps? My Rat II seems to lose some bass even with everything up for bass.

Should I just by the Sabbra Cadabra and leave it there ?
#16
Quote by sunbeam.ti
OK, so I have just read all about Boss !!!!!
Basically NO !!!!!

My problem now is I don't know what I'm talking about and sitting in a booth with just the pedals the shop can offer does not make me feel I'm getting the best for me ???

I know I want a HEAVY bass sound, but also clear with distortion that's not all fuzzy, don't now if that helps? My Rat II seems to lose some bass even with everything up for bass.

Should I just by the Sabbra Cadabra and leave it there ?
Well, your best bet would be to buy a Laney. Mr. Iommi has a 1x12 Signature Model as well as a head model. The second best bet would be the Sabbra, although AGAIN your AC4 may not be happy with it.
#17
The AC4 was bought because my wife loves it's 'look', and because of that, I'm allowed to leave it in the front room and play on my nice soft couch !
It cost me £340 ($450) just 4 days ago !

I simply can't afford to by another amp, this Vox is the 3rd one in my house now. I could sell the other two, but they are not worth much.

I really need some pedals that will work nicely with the AC4. Maybe forget Sabbath and just go for good pedals like reverb66 said.

the first two pedals you need are 1) a good reverb and 2) a drive pedal - those alone will do wonders. For reverb the hall of fame from TC is good. For drive pedals, it depends what you need - xotic pedals are excellent, but expensive. If cost is an issue buy second hand.


What exactly does my AC4 work well for ?

No idea if this changes anything, but my amp is actually a Vox AC4C1-12
Last edited by sunbeam.ti at Jul 30, 2016,
#18
OK, I've decided to go to Andertons in Guildford with my guitar. Every of amp or pedal you guys suggest is in stock with Andertons and out of stock in my local. So much for trying to keep it local!

I'll get them to show me a 'Hall of fame', the Sabbra Cadabra and some overdrive pedals., even the Iommi amp !

See what I end up with after some booth time

Thanks for your help.
#19
quick ? are you using the correct tuning for the various Sabbath songs? 1st 2 albums were in standard after that until Heaven and Hell it was C#. I belive H&H was in D and not sure after that.

an overdrive with good tone controls (not just 1 tone control) should work reasonably well. you can actually use your tone lab in the fx loop (provided your amp has one) for delay and reverb fx and it should do you just fine. you want your amp to produce the distortion. as mentioned a Vox like that is not the ideal amp for Sabbath. next time think tone and not sitting on the couch when choosing gear. perhaps you can buy or have the mrs make an amp cover that works for her décor when not in use.
Last edited by monwobobbo at Jul 31, 2016,
#20
Yes, I'm quickly learning about amp's! I thought a good tube amp was a done deal. The shop was less than helpfull for a beginner like me!

That's why I'm off to Andertons on Tuesday morning, a long trip, but worth it for the professional help and range of stock.

I'm aiming at a 'Hall of Fame' and a good overdrive, and we'll take it from there.

I'm going to have to forget Black Sabbath, and just get the pedals that work well with my amp

Thanks everybody for your help
#21
sunbeam.ti

you don't have to forget Sabbath at all. what you need to do is learn your gear. spend some time trying to get the sound you want, perhaps you can't get it totally but you will learn a lot along the way and most likely find some tones that you like and work for you. it's not as easy as getting the same type of guitar as your hero and plugging in to an amp (even a good one). takes time and patience plus a fair bit of knowledge.
#23
Take some time playing with the Rat and your amp, there are different ways to set pedals depending on what you want to get out of it, if you just dimed the gain on the Rat and plugged it in you won't get what you are looking for.
#24
Quote by Will Lane
You're going by Andertons? Say hi to Chappers and Cap Lee!


Tell them to learn how to EQ and mix amps properly while youre at it.
Quote by zgr0826
My culture is worthless and absolutely inferior to the almighty Leaf.


Quote by JustRooster
I incurred the wrath of the Association of White Knights. Specifically the Parent's Basement branch of service.
#25
Hi,

I went to Andertons yesterday. They were hyper helpful.
I bought a 'Hall of Fame' and a Tone City 'Model E'. I had at least two hours on a range of pedals and these did the job well for my useless level of playing.
I got exactly what I needed out of these pedals. I took my own guitar and they gave me a Vox AC4C1-12 (my amp amp) to use.

On another note, I saw Chappers and I told him to F*** off, I punched Cap Lee in the face and cos they can't use their gear, I smashed it all up !!!!
They thanked me and said it was for the best
Last edited by sunbeam.ti at Aug 3, 2016,