#1
Hi All

Firstly I am not predominantly a guitarist but am just learning, my technical knowledge of amps and guitars is basic at best, here is a video of me playing (badly) a bit of "Stray Cat Strut".



As you can hear my lead break is really lacking in OOOMPH, I need to boost the volume and maybe be able to give it the tiniest bit of overdrive, but this really isn't that important as most old Rockabilly stuff is played pretty straight, maybe with a wee bit of tremolo thrown in.

The amp I bought is a Vox AC30 C2, I don't even know if this has a second channel that I could use??? If so I would need to buy a footswitch. If this isn't an option for me can you please advise the best pedals out there for doing what I need, mainly boosting the volume a bit and maybe a little overdrive? Any advice you can give me would be really awesome as I need to sort this quickly as I am trying to find a band right now.

HUGE THANKS GUYS, YOU ALL ROCK!
#2
I would look into a hermida audio zen-drive.

or cheaper route would be a klone (the ehx soul food are pretty good overall and relatively cheap.
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#3
I researched a couple players' boards- the only one I saw with an actual OD was Brian Setzer. He uses a tubescreamer.

Also, you might find you don't need one if/when you get a guitar with more genre-appropriate pickups like P90s or FillerTrons (as discussed in your other thread).
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#4
According to Vox's website "The VOX AC30 Custom Series amp offer two channels: Normal and Top-Boost."

Recommend reading the manual, you'll probably find you already have everything you need.

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#5
Well you probably should be using the TB channel if you are not already. I use the high sensitivity input on the TB channel. An AC30 is great for country-esque genres. You can get a little more "OOOMPH" by bumping up the preamp gain some (what is plainly labeled VOLUME) so that when the guitar is full volume, you get a chunky overdriven lead sound, but if you back off the guitar volume a bit the sound will clean up for your rhythm tone. You adjust the MASTER VOLUME of the amp to where you need it. Also I would suggest using a neck or middle pickup if you want to get a bit more thickness to your sound if you are not already. Although a lot of twangy lead parts use the bridge pickup, which will cut some bass but give you more aggression to the tone.

It also seems like you are using the amp at a really low volume- your voice is much louder than the amp, and I can hear your guitar strings over the amp sound. It is possible you just do not have the amp turned up loud enough to move air. We hear frequencies differently depending upon their volume than what is actually being produced, and at low volumes we hear more treble than we do bass. That is an oversimplification, but if you want to learn up on that the studies are Fletcher-Munson Curves. There is also a bright cap in the amp circuit that, at low channel volumes, leaks extra treble frequencies.

To suggest pedals though, something like a Klone or a Tubescreamer could get you results you are looking for. Klones I consider a bit more open and transparent (although they are not transparent OD's) and Tubescreamers give some midrange emphasis. You would place either of these units somewhere between the guitar and amp input. Set their gain low, volume high- this will boost the input of the amp and give you some natural overdrive and volume boost. However, both these units generally cut a bit of bass so you will end up with less OOOMPH, but it will help you sit in a band mix better. Another option is to use a clean boost pedal in the effects loop of the amp. This will give you much more volume than distortion. An option for this is the TC Electronic Spark Booster (either mini or fullsize).

The amp does have two channels but they are not footswitchable. The footswitch input in the back is for turning the reverb or tremolo on or off. The only way to have access to both channel inputs at the same time is to use an AB box, that switches your guitar signal between the two inputs. You could also get an AB/Y box that allows you to switch or blend the two inputs. One last thing to note is that the EQ controls are passive. Passive controls (at least on this amp) do not really add frequencies but can only reduce. If you want more treble, boosting that control will actually cut bass rather than just boosting the treble. Likewise boosting bass will cut treble.

Welcome to the Brotherhood of VOX.
Last edited by Will Lane at Oct 1, 2016,
#7
Quote by GaryBillington
According to Vox's website "The VOX AC30 Custom Series amp offer two channels: Normal and Top-Boost."

Recommend reading the manual, you'll probably find you already have everything you need.


Considering that the channels are not footswitchable, how is this helpful? Even an A/B box wouldn't help since it's a shared master so the volumes would be way off


I'd just get a tubescreamer (or knockoff). Gain at 0, boosted volume and there you go
Last edited by flexiblemile at Oct 3, 2016,
#8
Quote by flexiblemile
Considering that the channels are not footswitchable, how is this helpful? Even an A/B box wouldn't help since it's a shared master so the volumes would be way off
That's why you'd need to read the manual to figure out if it helps. I knew it had 2 channels, but didn't know they aren't footswitchable - seems like a design flaw if what you say is true though

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#9
Quote by GaryBillington
That's why you'd need to read the manual to figure out if it helps. I knew it had 2 channels, but didn't know they aren't footswitchable - seems like a design flaw if what you say is true though
Tis true as I stated above, it is a bit of dirty laundry on the C2 series. I think you can blend the channels though with a proper Y splitter.
#10
Eq pedal would probably be the easiest option.

However, have you considered adding solo switch to your guitar's electronics? Basically, it's a switch that when turned on; bypasses the guitar's tone and volume pots and sends the signal strait to the jack. (Works better if you set your knobs lower than 10, then use the switch as a boost)

Third option you can try, is simply dialing in your sound with the volume knob rolled off a bit, then roll volume up to 10 for a boost
#11
umm.. well at least in the video you are playing at such a low volume that it would be tough to get any balls out of it even with a pedal. turn up the volume and see what happens.
#12
A/B works fine with these amps to switch channels, and if the idea is to kick in more volume and aggression then switching from the normal to top boost channel with the TB volume slightly higher will work great. It's not like one channel has tons more gain than the other, and they do have volume controls, so it's hardly rocket science to match channel volumes when switching. Plus with an A/B/Y you can blend both channels together.