Currently Being ModeratedSep 9, 2012 1:22 PM (in response to scotty_burford)Re: Will an attenuator allow me to get crunchy Dr Z tone from my POD HD/ DT25 amp?
not an expert on the Dr Z amp as you know. I have already made my suggestion to you (going for a power attenuator - but not only for the Dr Z Crunch as explained somewhere else in this forum). I understand that spending more money, handling more equipment for gigs is not what you are looking for - and you are right.
But all amps that need a fair high amount of power section load with the "pre amp model approach" needs - from my understanding - a quite high volume level and therefore the master volume cranked up into aereas which are objectively loud.
But there may be alternative ways to break up that specific amp for a good Crunch tone you want to achieve. I have seen 2 (??) drive knobs in the amp model. So may be some Dr Z amp experts can give valuable tips to you ???
Master volume at 2 o clock should be sufficient to get the pre amp models breaked up as they are able to do within their specific natural limits. At the end you need to fix your Master Volume for live playing at a defined level for all your amps. Especially the DT25 may run out of enough Headroom for clean tones (that was at least my concerns going for a 25 Watt amp in my Band with a loud drummer) going over that limit. But there is no better way other than expermenting what fits to you. Of course with a power attenuator you can increase your Master volume even higher than 1-2 o clock and you can reduce the additional volume by lowering the volume via your power attenuator. But I think you should give the amp some free Headroom for random peaks. If I remember correctly from the SPL Reducer manual (a former attenuator I have used) they recommend not to go over 70% with your master volume.
The real Hi-Gain amps like Treadplate, Uberschall, Engl, Line6 should have more than enough load from the pre amp and power section to come into a satuaration mode without any additional effects by setting Drive >= 45%, Amp volume >= 40% (and Master Volume 1-2 o clock). There is no need for an additional distortion or overdrive pedal on these amps to get a good distorted Rhytm and Lead tone.
All the Marshall amps (Park-75, JTM45 (don't remember the right expression), JCM800, Plexi Lead) nicely breaks up with Master volume at 1-2 o clock. But they benefit for Lead playing with either the Overdrive or a Distortion Pedal like the Screamer, which I like to use, to improve the sustain for example with a Stratocaster in Neck position: for a Ritchie Blackmore Lead playing tone I am adding some 20-30% Overdrive from an Overdrive Pedal with a JCM800 (may be this is a chestnut to you ...).
One example with a PARK-75 pre amp model and the Fender Telecaster guitar model on my JTV69 (position 1). If have recorded this at rehearshal (one Take - whole Band and with my former SPl Reducer power attenuator) This model really shines only with master volume cranked up to get a Crunch Tone (don't know if this is what you are looking for ???):
Clean Amps like the Fender Twin are staying quite clean at Master Volume 1-2 o clock. All the rest of the POD HD amps are a black box to me so there is nothing I honestly can contribute.
Hope you get some additional opinions from other users to proceed in the right direction for you.
All the best - wolbai.
Currently Being ModeratedSep 16, 2012 4:44 AM (in response to wolbai)Re: Will an attenuator allow me to get crunchy Dr Z tone from my POD HD/ DT25 amp?
I actually had an interetsing experience during the week. One of the valves blew and I replaced it and had the bias adjusted by a tech whilst doing so. The amp is quite different now; it is getting a good crunchy tone now as I had expected it would!
Currently Being ModeratedOct 5, 2012 11:44 PM (in response to scotty_burford)Re: Will an attenuator allow me to get crunchy Dr Z tone from my POD HD/ DT25 amp?
That is a really interesting observation Scotty and I'm glad that something simple like that is turning it around for you. Bias is a really big influence on the sound on any tube-based guitar amp (broadly, cold bias = cleaner cleans but more sterility, hot bias = richer OD tones but darker cleans and reduced tube life).
We tend to get a bit fixated on the whizzy tech in the DT amps but somewhere in amongst it all.are those hot bottles.
Anyone know what the recommendations are around the DT Amps and Bias. Given all the whizzy on the fly Class A/Class AB reconfigurations that go on I am guessing that it ain't that obvious.
(I don't have a DT btw so am not deeply versed on their lore and maintenance)
Currently Being ModeratedOct 6, 2012 7:13 AM (in response to jimsreynolds)Re: Will an attenuator allow me to get crunchy Dr Z tone from my POD HD/ DT25 amp?
Yes replacing those initial valves and having the amp biased has made quite a difference.
To be honest removing the simulated cabs from patches has also really changed the sound. I had assumed (incorrectly as it turned out) that the DT/POD combo would sound best with the modelled speakers on as well as they are turned on in the Line 6 patches. I was playing around with a few things, go rid of them and wow! What a difference.
Since I made those adjustments and replaced the valve I have had several people come up to me at shows and cooment on how good the guitar tone is.
Haven'r purchased an attenuator just yet as I really don't want to lug something else to a gig!
Currently Being ModeratedOct 6, 2012 2:19 PM (in response to scotty_burford)Re: Will an attenuator allow me to get crunchy Dr Z tone from my POD HD/ DT25 amp?
May I ask whether you use full or preamp models to confirm or question my own findings?
I have only played with the BF twin preamp in a lot of detail and found that turning CAB models on or off or changing ER and/or mics when preamps are used does not change my sound as far as I can tell. I went through the whole spiel of matching the built-in Fender style preamp in the DT25 with the DF Double Vibrato preamp in the HD500. While some posts in the past have claimed that CAB modeling should be on (this seems odd considering the power amp stage driving the CAB is off) and the HD500 OUT should be set to Line rather then Amp (this does not seem to apply to the L6 Link per the manual and only applies to the 1/4" analog outs), I have not observed that any of those settings make a difference when you simple connect a JTV through its digital interface to the HD500 and use L6 Link to connect to a DT25. I did not even find a volume difference between the DT25 Class A/B, Type I, Pentode voicing and the HD500 BF Double Vibrato preamp (same as DT25 voicing) as some posts claimed.
Anyway, still curious whether I got this fact finding mission right. If you are using full amp models turning the CABs off will make a difference. On the other hand if you are using preamp models I would have expected that the CAB settings make no difference whatsoever (they do cause a slight break in sound though if you change them).
In regard to attenuator I suspect it really only comes in very handy when you use an amp who's overdriven / breakup tone comes from the power amp stage. I am in the market for one too. Looked at the Rivera, but opted to delay until I have explored all other options to level ouput volume. I have not been able to identify how much the power amp input signal level contributes to a power amps tone break up, i.e., is the volume level on the power amp stage more or less important than input signal level. If its mostly the master volume that needs to be up, one could reduce the input signal to reduce overall volume. If this is not how it works an attenuator is unavoidable I think.
By the way, I heard from Rivera that they were talking with Line 6 what their attenuator should do to work with Line 6 DT amps. Supposedly they were told that Line 6's modelling/amp technology does not need attenuators. Well, we probably have to find out ourselves ...
Currently Being ModeratedOct 6, 2012 5:30 PM (in response to MartinDorr)Re: Will an attenuator allow me to get crunchy Dr Z tone from my POD HD/ DT25 amp?
I have been using the preamp models. I bought the 1 x12 cLine 6 cab with the amp but also have a Laney 2 x 12 that I use for bigger shows.
I almost always go for poweramp overdrive. Not such a fan of the fizzy preamp gain. My favourite tones are from guys that drive valve amps hard...that is the difficult thing with some of the gigs I play where I need to keep the volume onstage at a respectable level.
I have been using a JTM45 pre patch that i really like. The amp probably does need to be driven for it to really come to life but it is fantastic when it does. Lovely clean tone with just a hint of bite when I hit hard...and then I use pedals rather than the Line 6 effects for overdrive. Already had a great colleciton of pedals before I purchased this setup and I love the way they intercat with the Line 6 gear.
Currently Being ModeratedOct 6, 2012 5:46 PM (in response to MartinDorr)Re: Will an attenuator allow me to get crunchy Dr Z tone from my POD HD/ DT25 amp?
Correction. I don't know what was going on but CAB settings definitely make a difference. Looks like the difference for the BF Double is not much, at least not for the tones I tried.
Sorry for any confusion,
Currently Being ModeratedOct 7, 2012 11:46 AM (in response to MartinDorr)Re: Will an attenuator allow me to get crunchy Dr Z tone from my POD HD/ DT25 amp?
There is no general rule for using the cab/sims: It all depends on the cabs and speakers your are using with your DT50/25.
I have recently bought a Marshall JTVC212 cab to get more punch and balls to my DT50/212 (not volume). I - again - realized what a huge difference a cab with specific speakers can affect to your tone.
Having a 1x12 L6 cab will sound different to a DT50/212, because of DIFFERENT cab size and different speakers (one additional V30 vintage).
Using a DT50/25 head with a 4x12 closed cab or a 2x12 half open cab from a different vendor will sound different as well. The same 2x12 cab in a closed version will sound DIFFERENT again.
Using a BF Double (Fender Twin) with a DT50/212 is something I would not expect too much sound differences using cab/sim on or off, because the Dt50/212 is physically close to a Twin reverb.
Using a JCM800 with 4x12 Greenbacks/cab sim on using a L6 1x12 cab without cab/sim on would probably sounds not "dark" enough.
There is only one general rule for a starting point I can imagine: if the amp model and the corresponding cab you are using is speaker wise and cab size wise very much different to your own one, I would start to use the standard cab/sims on. In opposite: if your cab and speakers are close to the original amp/cab sim, you should start by setting your cab/sims off.
All in all: I think it is WRONG to say cab/sims should be on or cab/sims should be off as a general rule. It depends on the cabs and speakers you are using ...
As there is up to now NO official statement on L6 how to use the cab/sims, I want to point out that everything we are discussing here is based on individual experience and the different ears of the forum users - so am I.
Currently Being ModeratedOct 7, 2012 1:34 PM (in response to wolbai)Re: Will an attenuator allow me to get crunchy Dr Z tone from my POD HD/ DT25 amp?
Thanks for your feedback. I certainly did not want to stress rules. If it works that is great, no matter what one uses to get there. My comment was in regard to advice I read on how to match the HD preamp to the DT's preamp and get the same sound. While doing this I thought to hear no difference between CAB on or off and other recommended settings. I have to guess that I was a little too eager jumping to a conclusion w/o trying enough CABs. It's great that CAB sims work with preamps. If one does not like the results, just turn them off. I only jumped in to either confirm or correct my initial experience with the CABs because Scotty obviously tried a few things ;-).
By the way, I like to hear about what you guys hear and have tried. You do this a lot longer than me,
Currently Being ModeratedOct 7, 2012 11:19 AM (in response to scotty_burford)Re: Will an attenuator allow me to get crunchy Dr Z tone from my POD HD/ DT25 amp?
I recently checked my power section valves at a good store too.
Yes, the level of biasing the power section valves and the type of power section valves you are using can inflluence your tone as "jimsreynolds" has decribed it very self speaking. And he also mentioned that typical conflict in that between super clean and distordted tone setting. That means - in opposite to your needs - if your clean tones are suffering on too much distortion a "cold" biasing (lower than recommended) can give you a cleaner tone.
Huge differences in an amp tone where the power section needs very high master volume gain to get saturated, will not be adressed by changing from let's say from 26 to 36 mV.
If your environments you are playing live-gigs is in addition very extreme volume wise, I am still in the opinion that a power attenuator is a necessity to manage a DT50 amp.
But I fairly can understand that the change in valves and biasing can help for your special needs. I just wanted to point out that this is for my understanding unluckly not a solution which fits for everybody.
By The way: very good post with good comments. Thanks you!