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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi there,

I decided to tap into the abundant knowledge on this board..

Here's my "problem" :
I have a carvin legacy amplifier ( the 100w head and cab ) and I really love the preamp in it. It's really cool.
But..
Sometimes having only one distortion channel doesn't cut it, and even when I use a ds-1 to alter the sound I still feel fairly limited. So I acquired an ADA-MP2 through a lucky deal and really like it's versatility.
Now I have two setups:
1. Guitar into ds-1, into legacy
2. Guitar into MP2, into legacy fx return ( pluggin in the front doesn't sound very good )
This works for recording, but one can't start replugging cables in the mddle of a song live.

What I really want is it all, the lovely legacy distortion and the mp2's versatility. Unfortunately, putting the mp2 in the full fx loop of the legacy doesn't work that well, the sound is already colored by the legacy before going into the mp2, giving very unpredictable results. The same goed the other way around, the mp2 doesn't have a bypass function that allows me to get the uncolored sound into the legacy...

How can I fix this ?

(I left other fx and pedals out of the story for simplicity... )
 

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There may be cheaper/simpler ways to do it, but my first thought is to get an Axess Electronics GRX 4 router/switcher and wire it up as follows:

Guitar in
Loop 1 - out/in to DS1
Loop 2 - out to Legacy preamp, in from Legacy FX loop send
Loop 3 - out/in from MP2 preamp
Out to Legacy FX loop return

This gives you a lot of options, as you can basically turn each loop on and off individually. So you could use the DS1 in front of the Legacy, or the DS1 in front of the MP2.

Of course, that's not cheap, since you'd need a GRX 4-type device as well as some sort of MIDI foot controller.

--B
 

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You could technically make it work with an A/B switch, in retrospect, if you set it up as follows:

guitar -> DS1 -> splitter ->
one side to Legacy preamp -> A input
one side to MP2 preamp -> B input
A/B switch output -> Legacy FX loop return

Good news is that an A/B switch is a lot cheaper than a GRX4. Bad news is that you'll probably need some sort of a buffered splitter to prevent major tone suck from occuring. Of course, Axess Electronics makes a great buffer/splitter, the BS2, but I'm sure there are cheaper alternatives out there. I used to use a VHT Valvulator (pedal power supply/tube-driven buffer) to achieve the same effect.

--B

PS--I really don't work for Axess, but I guess I've learned... prior to getting my GRX4 every other splitter/router/buffer worsened my tone considerably. The GRX4, though pricey, was one of the better investments I've made.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanx for the congrats ! It's a lot of tweaking, but once you have the sound, the mp-2 is great.

Other thing... Wouldn't I need 2 a/b switches then ?

I need the fx loop for fx as well....

Seems the grx or something like that would be the way to go ?

guitar-----ds1-----A/B----mp2-------------FX-------legacyfxreturn
..............................\---legacypreamp----/

Or can you use a "Y" cable ?
 

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Ah, you could use two A/B switches. I was thinking the following:

Put the A/B switch before the FX unit in the FX loop. The purpose would be to switch one output (Legacy FX return) between two inputs (Legacy FX send, MP2). Then use a Y-cable to feed both the Legacy preamp and MP2 preamp out of the DS1, but as mentioned earlier, you may need a buffer there to maintain a consistent level. (so you could use a second A/B switch there. the real trick is, if you wanted to switch real time, you'd basically have to hit both A/B switches at once. good luck!)

--B
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
something like this ?

guitar-----ds1--/---mp2----------A/B---FX-------legacyfxreturn
......................\---legacypreamp-/

Where the Y cable is after the DS-1 and the A/B switch is after the preamps..

I'm really not familiar with the use of y cables, do they in any way alter the sound, like they might split your signal in half instead of creating two equal outputs ( especially since both loops are "active" at the same time, the impedance changes ) ?

This sounds like a simple and affordable option though, too good to be true ? :D

Thanks for keeping track of this thread so far !
 

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EL-CeeDee said:
I'm really not familiar with the use of y cables, do they in any way alter the sound, like they might split your signal in half instead of creating two equal outputs ( especially since both loops are "active" at the same time, the impedance changes ) ?
You've got it. It may alter the sound a bit. If that happens, then you probably need the buffer described above. Most buffers convert the guitar signal from high to low impedance, which preserves the tone better through splits, long cable runs, cheap FX, etc.

--B
 

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Hey Guys,
I think you could also do it with just a Boss LS-2 which is a fairly inexpensive box. It has 2 loops (A and B), so your signal would be:
Guitar -> DS-1 -> LS2 main input;
Loop A: LS2 A-send into front end of Legacy; Legacy effects out into LS2 A-return;
Loop B: LS2 B-send into MP2; MP2 output into LS2 B-return;
LS2 main output into Effects Return of Legacy.

Then you choose "Mode A" on the LS2. This toggles back and forth between Loop A and B with each pedal push. Each loop has a level control to set their relative volumes.

Excuse me if this is the same thing you guys already discussed above. (I'm actually not thinking too hard on this, so I could be providing useless and/or redundant info).
Bert
 

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Ah, that's really cool. I didn't realize that the LS2 had multiple modes. That probably is the cheapest & easiest way to do it, provided that the LS2 works with line level signals from the FX loop. My only concern is that it may be optimized for instrumental level signals from pedals. But it's def. worth a shot.

--B
 

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Good point, Brent. You got me wondering about the line level issue. I checked the LS2 reviews on Harmony Central and several people seem to be using it inside their effects loop. So I guess it works OK like that. Here's a quote from one guy that was using it pretty much like El-Cee-Dee wanted:

"I just wanted to add another way of using this pedal. I am using a Rocktron/Egnater TOL ie4 preamp, which goes into the "return"/"Poweramp in" of my Marshall JCM2000 DSL 100 Head and then into a 4x12 cab. The preamp is very versatile, but I always wanted to use the distortion from my Marshall too. So my setup now is the following, and it works good for my : guitar into the "input" of LS-2, the "output" into the "Return" of the Marshall. The first loop of the LS-2 is A send - Egnater in - Egnater out - LS-2 A return. The second loop is B send - Marshall input - Marshall output (aka send of the effects loop) - B return. Now I can switch between the two preamps and use them even in the mixed mode which gives a VERY interesting and special sound."

That's basically the setup I described, but he also mentions combining BOTH preamps. One of the LS2 modes is "Mix Loop A+B" In that mode, the two level knobs adjust how much of each loop is in the output mix. That could be interesting, eh?

Bert
 

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That looks exactly right to me. And yes, the Lehle would probably be a better choice than the LS2, albeit more bucks. The Tonebone "Headbone" might also be a possibility, but I'm not familiar with that unit. I never noticed any coloration when I used the LS2, but I wonder if that was because I have a Valvulator buffer first in my signal chain. I also recall reading somewhere (can't recall where) that about a year ago, Boss revised the electronics in the LS2 to ensure more transparency. No telling if that was real and I doubt anyone at Roland tech help would be able to answer that.

Anyway, I think you got it figured out...
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I sent the above diagram to burkhard, the "inventor" of the D.Loop ( misnamed D.looper in the diagram. )

I received a reply within about an hour. He answered a couple of questions, that might be of importance to you guys too..

The D.loop is midi switchable and programmable.
The setup in the diagram should work.
A DS-1 doesn't have true bypass function, so the signal is already buffered.

The e-mail he sent to me was very polite and he complimented me on the professional setup of the diagram. He also included the D.Loop manual with his e-mail and referred me to the Dutch lehle dealer. He asked me to post my setup on his user guestbook.

To me, this is customer service as it was meant to be, a personal email from the company owner and inventor of the product within the blink of an eye.

It still is quite expensive at 205,00 euro. But I must say, they just might have convinced me to become a customer.

Compliments to Lehle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
stratoskier said:
Afterthought: the ouput of the Headbone might be a speaker out rather than a line level out, so that wouldn't work. Not sure on that though...
They do have a "loopbone" which does the same thing, no switchable buffer though ( always on) but it does have a feature to switch amp channels ( as if you pressed the footswitch ), which is a neat function, but I can't image why I'd use it.
 
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