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How Do You 'fatten' Up A Distortion Tone?

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Did a show on Saturday night and the sound guy said he loved the clean tone, nice and thick but my distortion was very thin. He said he adjusted it on the go, thickening it up whenever I’d go to distortion but said it would make a sound guy’s job much easier if I had the tone thicker to begin with.

 

I’m not exactly sure what he means by fattening up the sound, another guy in the audience said it sounded too ‘trebley’.

 

Any suggestions?

 

s

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the audience guy is pretty much saying the same thing the engineer is saying. trebly tones are thin and sometimes brittle and harsh sounding. fatness comes from the right mix of lows and mids. well, mostly mids, but the lows kind of balance the whole tone and give it sponginess. 

 

so basically the sound guy wants you to eq your patch to have more of a low/mid body, which you should do at the amp level. if you've got the lows and mids turned up and are still getting a thin tone, try using a different mic or cab model. 

 

are you going straight to FOH or going into an amp on stage...? 

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 try using a different mic or cab model. 

 

are you going straight to FOH or going into an amp on stage...? 

 

I was using a patch that had only effects, no amp/cab selected, going straight into an amp head and quad on stage.

 

I pretty much thought it was to do EQ, I'll look into adding EQ's to the patch to boost the lows/mids, hopefully without making it sound too boomy.

 

s

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oh ok, then you need to tweak the controls in the amp head to get more lows and mids, since that's where the preamp is. 

 

EQing at the amp level gets the basic tone shape in place. which can then be post EQed to suit the mix. it's easy to cut something that is there, but hard to boost something that isn't there. so use the EQ on the amp controls to shape your raw tone which has a certain bass-mid-treble balance to your taste. then let the engineer EQ it more if he feels it's needed to fit in the mix. i think he said, "it woulld make a sound guy’s job much easier if I had the tone thicker to begin with" because he was having to boost it too much to get the desired body in the tone. so it would be nice if your raw tone had the basic 'meat' so he's only refining/fine tuning the sound. 

 

hope this helps. 

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If you use the hd distortion models it would be enough to boost the bass and cut the treble.

With the mids you have to experiment a little bit because of the different action they have.

 

What you also missed to mention:

you go into an amp head then, cab/mic to PA or cab simulation PA???

I supposed you use distortion model, is this correct or do you use the amps gain???

You should always describe your setup detailed otherwise we will have to puzzle or ask.

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Sorry,

 

HD500 > amp head input > quad > mic. on stage > PA.

 

I used both the Line6 Heavy Distortion effect combined with gain from the amp.

 

s

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Sorry,

 

HD500 > amp head input > quad > mic. on stage > PA.

 

I used both the Line6 Heavy Distortion effect combined with gain from the amp.

 

s

Do you use a A/B channel to change from clean to distortion within you amp?

Then boost the lows in your distortion channel of the amp.

 

It is curious the the clean sound is good an distortion thin if you use the same channel in your amp.

While using heavy distortion in the hd in front of a amp model there is no loss of thickness of the sound...

But I only go direct in the power mixer and don't have much experience with the pod in front of an amp.

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I put a delay behind an angel f-ball with an f-ball pre set excactly the same in one if my patches and it sounds very very thick.... Fat as hell

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Do you use a A/B channel to change from clean to distortion within you amp?

Then boost the lows in your distortion channel of the amp.

 

I have a Reynold's amp, pic here:

 

http://www.ultimatemetal.com/forum/lycanthia/389779-lycanthia-endorsements-gear.html

 

It has two independent pre amp channels via separate inputs and a switch to link them. I could A/B them but I like to link them to sculpt the tone.

 

It's not a high gain amp, it's based on the sound of 50's/60's amps and has a wonderful clean tone and I now use the POD for more gain.

 

I'll try boosting lows/mids and adding a bit of delay and see how it goes.

 

It sounded pretty good to me when I was tweaking it but we're a 6 piece with keys & violin so I guess in a live situation I'll need more mids to push the sound through.

 

s

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Use less distortion. Tones thin out when one uses too much gain. I just did two gigs with a HD desktop plugged into a miked Marshall Class 5, and it sounded awesome. I used 2 tube driver models cascaded, one for dirt rhythm, and both for leads. Never muddy, or shrill. So, my answer is proper gain staging:)

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Also try adding a tiny bit of 250ms Delay. 

I second this especially if your soloing and you got another guitarist playing rhythm where he gets the thicker tone and mid scoop and you get the mids to cut thru.

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Cheers, I agree that tones thin out with more gain and don't like distortion to be too fizzy.

 

s

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In my very humble opinion: using a pod hd 500 in front of a good amp doesn't makes sense!

I see two ways for a musician:

1. you're looking for your very personal sound. Therefor you will search a long time a test a lot of amps till you found your favorite. You put reverb and delay behind the microphon(es) and some modulation in front or behind your amp and that's it

2. you play covers and have to copy a lot of sounds and musician. Then you buy a board like the pod hd 500 and go straight to the FOH or straight into a good stage monitor like the line6 stagesource and then into FOH.

Why?

Using your favorite amp with hd 500 is overpowered. It's like having sex with your wife and your lover :lol: Maybe you will have some fun, but the girls will make war  :ph34r: I tried the pod as a preamp into fx return from my tube combo and I must say: Better use my tube combo alone with a little reverb and use the hd 500 straight to FOH: really, really great sound.

I dial in my sound at home by earphone and make some correction in our rehearsal room. That's the best way.

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. you're looking for your very personal sound. Therefor you will search a long time a test a lot of amps till you found your favourite. 

 

I've tried a few amps and I was never fully happy with them.  The one I settled for has a great clean tone but it lacks the distortion I'm after. I figure it's better to distort a clean amp than to try to get a clean sound from a distorted one.

 

I don't want to have 2 amps on stage so my choice is to use a distortion effect to give my clean amp more gain, I prefer to have a processor where I can create patches rather than doing a song and dance with pedals, I got an endorsement by Line 6 so naturally went for a HD500.

 

That's my 2c.

 

s

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output mode from hd?  studio direct, front stack etc

4 cable method bypassing reynolds pre

hd pre amp or full amp mode?

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output mode from hd?  studio direct, front stack etc

4 cable method bypassing reynolds pre

hd pre amp or full amp mode?

 

Front stack mode.

 

Guitar in > HD500 > 1/4 inch out > Reynold's pre amps (A&B channel combined).

 

More info here:

 

http://line6.com/support/topic/628-sound-bleeding-through-when-guitar-volume-pot-on-0/

 

s

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studio direct will fatten your sound

 

Just curious, why is that?

 

s

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because it adds the microphone/room emulation and changes the sound to what would be the sound of a mic'd setup... 

the other modes output a sound before the mic, which is more suitable for feeding a guitar amp....

however... never any rules... if one works for you... run with it.

 

don't know

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The one I settled for has a great clean tone but it lacks the distortion I'm after. I figure it's better to distort a clean amp than to try to get a clean sound from a distorted one.

I know your problem very well! I drag for years a 35 kg Fender Twin Reverb stairs up to my home stairs down from their to the shows and it broke my back, just to get a great clean sound an a lacking distortion sound.

Over the years I played a lot of amps and never was fully satisfied.

The pod hd 500 brought me very close to the sound I want. Straight into FOH and for the monitoring I use an AER acoustic guitar amp, great sound!

Still with my (almost acoustic) guitar trio we use a small p. a. just for club gigs: my acoustic guitar have more power and drive then my jazzguitar and my Variax through the hd 500. It seems to be a problem of mixer and p. a.

You wrote you go through you Reynolds preamp into a "quad" Sorry, I don't know everything and English is not my mothers tongue, what is a quad? Speaker simulation or a cab?  :wacko:

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In my very humble opinion: using a pod hd 500 in front of a good amp doesn't makes sense!

I see two ways for a musician:

1. you're looking for your very personal sound. Therefor you will search a long time a test a lot of amps till you found your favorite. You put reverb and delay behind the microphon(es) and some modulation in front or behind your amp and that's it

2. you play covers and have to copy a lot of sounds and musician. Then you buy a board like the pod hd 500 and go straight to the FOH or straight into a good stage monitor like the line6 stagesource and then into FOH.

Why?

Using your favorite amp with hd 500 is overpowered. It's like having sex with your wife and your lover :lol: Maybe you will have some fun, but the girls will make war  :ph34r: I tried the pod as a preamp into fx return from my tube combo and I must say: Better use my tube combo alone with a little reverb and use the hd 500 straight to FOH: really, really great sound.

I dial in my sound at home by earphone and make some correction in our rehearsal room. That's the best way.

Generally, it doesn't make sense. But it really depends on the amp. I couldn't do anything with getting a proper mid/higher-gain sound in front of a Fender amp.. Tried for an hour, and no dice. It took me 10-min to get something happening for the Marshall. It was probably just the speaker. The Fender works fine for lower gain TS9 style drive though. I used me setup for a benefit and a casino gig, where FOH sound was unpredictable. Worked great, and felt like a pedalboard.

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 what is a quad? Speaker simulation or a cab?  :wacko:

 

Sorry, quad is short for 'quad box' which is a 'box' or cabinet with 4 speakers.  

 

Quad is latin, it means 'four', it is also used to prefix many words like quadruple, which means to multiply by four.

 

s

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Sorry, quad is short for 'quad box' which is a 'box' or cabinet with 4 speakers.  

 

Quad is latin, it means 'four', it is also used to prefix many words like quadruple, which means to multiply by four.

 

s

Sorry, not quit correct, quadra is a quadrat, (4 edges). Four in latin is "quattuor".

Quad in Germany is a motor-cycle with 4 wheels ...

So I was thinking "What the hell he's doing? Playing guitar through his motorbike?"  :D

So you see, in such a forum, with members from different countries sometimes it would be advisable not to use slang or shortcuts.

 

Try you hd 500 on a line6 stagesource monitor (if available at your local dealer). Connecting via the L6 Link and with the amp models of the hd I've heard you can do fantastic sounds.

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Four in latin is "quattuor".

 

Sorry I didn't articulate well, it's a prefix of Latin origin that represents four.

 

Quad in Germany is a motor-cycle with 4 wheels ...

 

Yes, they're also known here as quad bikes (four wheels) or in the USA as ATV's (all terrain vehicles)

 

 

Try your hd 500 on a line6 stagesource monitor (if available at your local dealer). Connecting via the L6 Link and with the amp models of the hd I've heard you can do fantastic sounds.

 

Thanks, is this like a foldback wedge? (monitor on stage that faces you but not the audience)

 

I'd like to get the best sound from my HD500 with amp stack first.

 

s

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It is a lot.

It is a full range speaker with power amp. It has some special features. It recognizes the position.

Vertical working like a p.a. box, horizontal like a foldback wedge (changes the angle of reflection).

Also connected by L6 Link it works like a guitar amp (model) or like a acoutic guitar amp (full range).

But I haven't yet tested the StageSource, I've only read some articles and heard some user comments.

If I would need a guitar amp on stage in future it would be the first amp I would test.

So take it only as a notice from myself.

I'm sure with your equipment and the pod hd 500 you can also get the sound you like. You will have to try a little :)

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I put a delay behind an angel f-ball with an f-ball pre set excactly the same in one if my patches and it sounds very very thick.... Fat as hell

 

Wow Wow Wow.....I haven't run it through my DT25 yet, but I just did a test run through the XLR outputs to a pair of KRKRP5 G2 studio monitors, this is one of the best heavier tones I've ever heard out of my HD PRO. Ridiculous haromonics!!!

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I put a delay behind an angel f-ball with an f-ball pre set excactly the same in one if my patches and it sounds very very thick.... Fat as hell

 

How much delay do you use?

 

s

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Here are a few things that have worked for me to increase fattness without sounding muddy: 1) lower the gain (I use the minimum amount of gain I can get away with which fattens the tone), 2) lower treble, 3) use a red comp (sustain 55%) before overdrive and amp (seems to fatten the tone even if it's not turned on), 4) I use a tube comp with 100% threshold and output at 12 placed after the red comp and before overdrive and amp to serve as a volume boost (it seems to keep the tone fat and makes it sound more alive), 5) I use 2 tape echo delays after the amp in stereo - one at 25ms and the other at 50ms, both with 0 repeats and 50% mix (this adds thickness to any patch whether it's gain or clean), 6) lowering the guitar tone knob and volume knob a little can help increase fattness.

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How much delay do you use?

 

s

I use a stereo delay left at 250ms right at 250ms then I the mix is barely on at 8% to 13% but I have the mix so I can control it with exp pedal

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All of these modeling devices sound best into an FRFR setup. Also we as guitarists don't know how to manage mid-range. For a lead tone clean or distorted I set the mids right at the point where they start to sound unpleasant when played alone. When that drummer starts drumming and that bass player starts playing and the keyboard player starts playing your guitar will be lost instantly if you don't do this to some degree. You have to set your e.q. correctly to work with other instruments. I play to a backing track to make sure things are right before I take any modeler out to a live gig.

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All of these modeling devices sound best into an FRFR setup. Also we as guitarists don't know how to manage mid-range. For a lead tone clean or distorted I set the mids right at the point where they start to sound unpleasant when played alone. When that drummer starts drumming and that bass player starts playing and the keyboard player starts playing your guitar will be lost instantly if you don't do this to some degree. You have to set your e.q. correctly to work with other instruments. I play to a backing track to make sure things are right before I take any modeler out to a live gig.

that's a big plus2

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I went back into the rehearsal studio to experiment more with my live rig.

 

This time I decided to scroll through the amp simulation on the HD to see how they'd go as a distortion effect as my tone was still sounding thin.

 

The Treadplate, F-Ball and Uber amps definitely gave my sound more balls. I was plugging straight into my amps input so I tried the Treadplate pre, it was still a bit lacking and when I tried out some different cabs it really changed things, I added just a touch of overdrive to it and it's really giving out a good tone.

 

I was a bit hesitant to use the amp simulation with an actual amp but it may be the way to go.

 

It's a shame that the only way I can experiment with my live setup is at a studio, it can be very costly but I'm liking it a lot.

 

s

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I put a delay behind an angel f-ball with an f-ball pre set excactly the same in one if my patches and it sounds very very thick.... Fat as hell

 

Please upload the Angel F-ball patch of yours. Thanks :)

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