Tube distortion or digital? - Jemsite
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 11:30 AM Thread Starter
 
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Tube distortion or digital?

Just curious to what the real difference is in sound, i know the tubes give a cleaner sound ryt? Sorry I'm quite new and know tubes sound better, but i can't put my finger on whether I'm best just using my ME-50 for distortion rather than my Peavey Valveking head.
Regards
Jonny
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 11:46 AM
 
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Re: Tube distortion or digital?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Guitarist-Jonny View Post
Just curious to what the real difference is in sound, i know the tubes give a cleaner sound ryt? Sorry I'm quite new and know tubes sound better, but i can't put my finger on whether I'm best just using my ME-50 for distortion rather than my Peavey Valveking head.
Regards
Jonny
Well if you have both, why not try it out and see which you prefer?

You could even use the overdrives on there as a clean boost, so you're still using the tubes, but pushing them harder.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 11:50 AM
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Re: Tube distortion or digital?

Digital distortion works well when playing quietly by yourself, but when playing with a band at louder volumes, you will need the 'meat' of tube distortion to be heard.

When I practice, I use a Marshall DFX15 - it has a fantastic sound by itself, but I use a VOX AC30 or a Marshall DSL with the band.

If deciding between the two, think about how much time is spent actually playing with others vs. practicing by yourself or with your Ipod.

-jemaholic
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 12:16 PM
 
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Re: Tube distortion or digital?

The difference is to do with the way they distort, I am not 100% on the physics but its something like (bad) digital distortion ends up with a square wave, and harsh harmonics which interfere with the pleasantness of the sound, whereas tube distortion provides rounded corner-wave and a harmonic distortion.

Whether the Valveking is a great example of tube distortion I have no idea; it could be that the ME-50 actually is a better digital than it is a tube.

Tube distortion gets more complex in that the most harmonic form comes from distortion of the power amp valves i.e. at very loud volumes, or towards the limits of the amp's output. So the preamp (pre-gain) distortion on a tube amp is not as good a sound as the hi-volume. A 4w tube amp is the solution here.

There is an amazing site somewhere on creating distortion with EQ pedals, distortion pedals and a distortion channel on an amp.

Basically you can use EQ in between these stages:

guitar > EQ > distortion pedal > EQ > preamp stage > EQ (from amp or external effect) > power amp

all 6 of those stages feed each other. the guitar volume knob and first EQ pedal are both pre-gains for the distortion pedal, which is itself a pre-gain for the preamp stage of your amp.

The theory is that you can feed different parts of the EQ spectrum to suit the distortion characteristics of each.

In practice you can play around with all of this until you find what makes you smile.

This is something similar I found by quickly googling, but its not the site I am thinking of. That had a black-and-white drawing in it.

http://www.amptone.com/2eqswithpowerattenuator.htm
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 02:28 PM
 
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Re: Tube distortion or digital?

I dont dis agree with the above post ( i cant cuz its tru).

The main here is: listen.

Yes we (the vast majority of guitarplayers) find that tube amps sound the best be it that these should be "good" amps.

Some players actually prefer stompbox or fx-units distortion and yes some of them are really great ( keely mod TS-9, Keeley DS1 ea).

Go out to store and check out what suits you.

It is true though that some sounds are great for practicing but suck nuts in a band or live. Youll tend you use more gain and a grainier sound solo then you would in a band.

When it comes to tone there a zillion factors involved
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 02:33 PM
 
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Re: Tube distortion or digital?

well i played on a solid state 10w amp with a boss ds-1 for a long time, also used some amp modelling software eg guitar rig 2. i dunno if that counts as "digital", but i'll tell you one thing, after i bought a tube amp, solid state distortion just sounds like a "swarm of angry bees", to quote a dear friend of mine

but seriously, natural tube overdrive > *
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 04:25 PM
 
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Re: Tube distortion or digital?

stompbox OD's generally have analog circuits while multifx units usually use digital prgramming (pre digital age units set aside off course).

A swarm of angry bees is true in a lot of stompboxes. But like a said there are some really cool ones out there. Me, I prefer my DSL100.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 05:13 PM
 
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Re: Tube distortion or digital?

yupp, give me hughes and kettner any day
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-24-2007, 11:51 PM
 
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Re: Tube distortion or digital?

Why not try using clean and dirty channels of the amp for good rhythm sounds. Then see if you can blend in a slightly overdriven sound with the fx to tip the dirty amp sound over the edge for soloing. I did this years ago with a JCM800 50w head (footswitchable) I then used a ibanez tube screamer with a mild setting to send the amp over the edge. Worked a treat and was able to control feedback and get great tone at real volume and also used the same scenario when playing at home. For me personally it was the best of all worlds. Cheers
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distortion pedal , ibanez tube screamer , marshall dsl , peavey valveking , power amp , tube amp , tube amps , tube distortion

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