Hello, guitar veterans! I have a rather specific question relating my guitar feedback and the effects I use.

I am trying to get my guitar to feedback. I have a BOSS katana 50 hooked straight into a Peavey KB4 keyboard amp ( to utilize the large speaker, or at least that's what I tell myself. Certainly it's not because I'm broke or anything ). My effects loop is: Digitech Drop, BOSS DS-1, Dunlop wah ( I forget the specific model ). Long story short: when I have the drop pedal turned off,  I get feedback. However, when I activate the drop, I don't get even a hint of feedback, no matter how much distortion I pile on. Even if I turn the drop on as the feedback is going, it decays almost instantly. Also, a side question: my guitar tone sounds completely different when I turn the drop on. Not worse, just different. And quieter. Although I've been playing for four years now, I'm not tonally versed enough to say, " oh, yeah that just added a ton of mid" or, " well, there goes all the treble in my tone". Is there anyone with some experience with the Digitech Drop to suggest a way to (A: get my guitar tone more normalized between when I have the drop turned on or off, and (B:  get me some feedback!

Thank ye, O mighty gods!
you don't have a noise gate in there, do you?

half of feedbacking is volume. half placement and angle of the strings in a room.
The Katana has a built in noise gate that you can't adjust with the physical settings on the amp, only in the Boss Tone Studio software. Check out the settings there and make sure the gate is off or adjust the threshold until you are able to get some.

Other than that, like trashed mentioned above, it's all about volume and positioning of the guitar in the room.

EDIT: Nevermind, I just read your post again, I see what you're saying now. Unfortunately with those drop tune pedals, it seems they just haven't figured out how to do it without sucking out tone and gain -- and the further down you have it drop your tuning, the worse it is. Is the Drop before or after your DS-1 in the loop? Maybe try the Drop between the guitar and the amp and see if you get different results.

Failing that, it might be time to get another guitar for different tunings
Last edited by ExDementia at Jul 25, 2017,

+1 keyboard amps are for keyboards
+1 again. modeling amps are for modeling amps. don't stack them with effects.

he is trying to GET feedback. not block. it.
legolij1028  Hmmm. I'm no scientist but....

I wonder if it has to do with the fact that the sound resonating back to the strings is now in a different key, and therefore is not vibrating the strings more in that same frequency in order to get them to feedback. Once the pedal is on, the vibration of the strings and what's coming out of the amp are now entirely different frequencies, so they might not interact in the way we're used to in order to create that feedback. 

It would be really interesting if that were the case.
^Yep, basically it appears that when the guitar is drop tuned the freq is too low to resonate with the guitar and generate feedback.
Modelers usually don't play well with effects. In your case it will have to be a lot of trial & error until you get somewhere. Start taking out pedals from the loop and see what happens. Also start with a clean patch, say only distortion and siable noise gate and other effects that might be going on. It won't hurt to get familiar with the Katana software patch editor.

BTW - wah should be in front of amp, no?
As others have said you may just have too many things happening. Two different amps, the outboard effects, the Katana effects and a drop tune pedal is a lot to have going on. I like ExDementia's idea that the amp is putting out frequencies when in drop tune and may be affecting the guitar strings vibrations. Don't know if that's happening but that is a good "out of the box" thought.

Note: As ExDementia said the Katana does have a noise gate but you need to hook up to the Boss Tone Central to adjust it on the setting you are using. It's shown as "NS" I assume that means "noise suppressor" as the last parameter on each setting chain.
Yes I am guitarded also, nice to meet you.
Last edited by Rickholly74 at Jul 26, 2017,
Rickholly74 Good to know. So, as I have never messed much with effects before, and am still kind of a noob, do I disable the noise gate, or use it to adjust the volume difference?

BTW: Thanks to all you guys for all the helpful suggestions, I truly appreciate it!
I have the Katana 100 but I think the BOSS Tone Central site is the same for the Katana 50. Download the Katana 50 software at http://bosstonecentral.com/. There are a few very good explanations on how to use it (including one of my own) on YouTube. You have access to 55 BOSS effects pedals at the site all free for Katana owners.
Yes I am guitarded also, nice to meet you.
Drop tuning requires more power (a lot) from the amp to reproduce the notes at the same volume. If you drop an octave, it requires at least four times the power to reproduce the same note as the octave above. Feedback is produced by the amp moving the air which moves the string, which in turn produces the sound. Each note requires a different level of power to reproduce and thus each note requires a different volume level.

Distortion doesn't have a lot to do with feedback, except that the additional harmonics usually add more notes that *can* feedback (including a lot that you don't want).

As a side note, I have sustainers installed on several guitars. They're actually feedback loops that don't require volume (or even that your guitar is plugged into anything) to produce feedback. They use an electromagnet powered by a 9V battery. The electromagnet looks like a pickup and lives in the neck position of your guitar. In fact, the electromagnet is usually wired to BE the neck position pickup when your sustainer isn't activated. When activated, the sustainer circuit, battery, electromagnet and your bridge pickup produce a feedback loop that will sustain notes roughly until the battery wears out.
Another option is to try the DigiTech FreqOut Natural Feedback pedal, which will give you feedback-like results with or without distortion, at any volume level.


The issues with it have been that it's a bit noisy, that it has a fairly hard threshold cutoff, and that it's not true bypass.
In addition, your string really isn't ringing with that feedback harmonic (as it would be with volume or sustainer feedback) so there's a noticeable difference in sound if you're used to the real thing.
The 1st thing I would do is simplify the signal chain and eliminate a dozen possible reasons for this problem.  Try just guitar > Wah > Drop pedal > Amp and get your gain from an amp voice rather than a pedal.  See if that gives you what you want.  I suspect the keys amp and all the stuff in the effects loop are the issue.

 Generally you want wah, OD, in front of the amp and delay, rev, in the loop.
"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
Last edited by Cajundaddy at Jul 27, 2017,
The amp and speaker should make no difference.  I used to use TWO digital effects boards with noise gates back in my Nu-Metal band days - into a Peavey 115 Bass Amp.  I got feedback for days.  I also did something similar recently with a Digitech RP-250 at an open jam night gig. Now that I think about it, I played a few shows with Lithium on that old dual effects setup using a Keyboard amp before too.

The trick is actually to find the Noise gate on that Katana, and back it down just enough to let the note sing through, but not so much that all you hear is hum and buzz and fuzzy noise when your gain is kicked in.

And typically if you use effects with an amp modeler - unless you are recording like I do and need something to alter the signal in a Stereo method and there is no Stereo Effects loop on the modeler - you'll want to put the effects IN FRONT of the Amp modeler for them to sound their best.
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ExDementia Even though that is the case, I still really enjoy reading all these different suggestions. I'm looking forward to trying all these different solutions, but the first thing I want to try is altering the noise gate. I really don't want to get rid of my DS-1 out of the loop like several of you guys have suggested because I honestly like the tone (or maybe lack thereof?) that I've created.
Quote by ExDementia
I think what people are missing here (I did the same thing at first) is that he does get plenty of feedback without the Digitech Drop Tune pedal, but gets none with the pedal turned on. That leads me to believe the issue is 100% with the polyphonic pitch shifting in the pedal.

Which is why I'm suggesting that he may want to get a bit more power for when he turns on that Drop Tune Pedal.