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  1. #1

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    Heya, quick question...

    When I play with an electric band I often feel I want to round out the sound of the guitar a bit more without necessarily introducing too much more drive.

    (FYI I play a Fender Tele through a Fender Princeton with a 10" L'il Buddy speaker... I don't actually find headroom a problem with this set up, and the amp is more than loud enough (I never turn it up full and there's no distortion....)

    So I wonder whether what I need is a clean boost (like the EP) or an EQ pedal... I think the EQ would be more versatile? But I'm not sure whether it could cover the base of a good sounding clean boost.

    What are your thoughts?

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    The Carl Martin ParametricPreamp can boost the signal via the "Level" control and in addition provides a semi parametric EQ (the bandwith is missing, it operates 3 bands via center control of a fixed bandwith for each, and a control for the amount of boost/cut for each band).



    I find that this enhances the sound even if i tweak the EQ controls very subtle or not at all which is almost never the case.

  4. #3

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    Then you've got the Empress Paraeq, where you get the EQ and a boost in the same box.


  5. #4

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    +1 on the EQ pedal

    I went for the empress ParaEQ earlier this year, and it was even better than expected.
    Using it for clean sound, and finding it very flexible but still easy to dial in.
    There's a boost function, which I've only used with dirt pedals, but have not spent as much time away from "clean".

    IF there was one thing I'd like more, it would be two of them (or the ability to switch pre-programmed settings, but it does not have the architechture for that.) Clean EQ settings work OK with the dirt/overdrive stuff, but having another dedicated EQ setup for dirt/crunch would get that optimized.

    I followed Jazznote's posts where he purchased, and returned the ParaEQ in favor of keeping his Carl Martin (was looking for quieter operation.) I'd like to sample the Carl Martin myself, though I do really like the extra tweaking features on the empress ParaEQ.

    In short, if you're considering EQ I'd say jump on either of these mentioned so far. Parametric is going to be more flexible than graphic, and better fit for getting the most out of your amp /speaker's character sound.

    John

  6. #5

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    Thanks for the suggestions- but Anything with a smaller footprint?

    I use a small pedal board...

  7. #6

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    WMD Utility Parametric EQ has smaller footprint, but may be more suitable for tweaking distortion.
    The Carl Martin or the Empress would be quieter and better suited for clean.

    Clean boost or EQ pedal?-p_eq_1024x1024-jpg

  8. #7

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    Have you ever tried the fabled RC Boost? Only treble, bass, gain and volume, but its kind of like getting great blackface tone and sparkle in a box.

    I have to admit, it makes my archtops sound even better. Being a purist isn’t always easy, there’s always someone who comes along and messes with the concept of “great guitar into great amp”. Before you know it, I’m swapping cables, bridges, pots, tubes, speakers, strings and picks and haven’t even touched my pedalboard, thinking there’s an even better “purist” tone signal in there. Intriguing, how many variables there can be.

    Now I want to try an Empress! But, you might really like an RC.

  9. #8

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    My tele always sounds better with my Xotic EP boost! It sounds much fuller.

  10. #9

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    I often play guitars with floaters and a little boost helps the somewhat lower output of the PUs. About half a year ago i bought a TC Spark with the idea to reduce size & weight of some of my equipment. It sounds decent, has a the possibility to improve the sound in more than one way and can boost the signal tremendously without any trace of distortion but i ended up still using the Carl Martin on all gigs so far ....

    SPARK BOOSTER | Stompboxes | Guitar | TC Electronic | Categories | MUSIC Group - TC Electronic

  11. #10

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    Metal Zone turned EQ, obviously.



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  12. #11

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    I have a Boss GE-7 that works fairly well for this. I like to use it as a boost (or cut, depending on the situation) by setting the gain slider to whatever works with the setup. I often just keep the sliders flat, but I may boost or cut some frequencies. I can have it off for rhythm, and switch it on for solos, or vice versa, depending on my taste at the time. It's old, and it was a freebie with an amp purchase, but it works.

  13. #12

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    Maybe what you need is a compressor pedal...

  14. #13

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    or a volume pedal...

  15. #14

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    if you have to go small and simple, i like the eqd tone job. not the most precise thing out there, but it is dialed in quite well and you can get a whole buttload of tonal variation from it. you can also run it at 18v if you prefer.

    i don't mind the rc booster at all, but as eq's go, mid control is mandatory. and sweepable mids? so much the better. i do think the rc booster is great at giving an amp a little bit of that toasty sound without getting too distorted. i also liked to roll back the lows a little to keep it from getting muddy as the volume went up.

    the ep booster is another long time favorite, but i think it depends on what you play. the thinner or brighter your guitar, the more you'll like it. i think most of the "always on" ep guys play single coils. with the low mid boost, it can get tubby (or distorted) with humbuckers, but i still like it a fair amount. i have used it to liven the proceedings before with an archtop and it can get dark or tubby if you aren't careful.

    another left field suggestion would be the zoom ms70, which has a few parametric and graphic eq options built in. you have to be a little more savvy to set everything up, but it is quite useful, and you can have several instances of each eq, if you like. you also get a bunch of other effects in the deal, so win/win.

    and as i mentioned a billion times already, my current favorite thing ever is the fishman platinum pro eq. worth the pedal board space, and it can clean up your board some with the built in tuner, boost, and compressor, etc.

    lastly, given you are using a princeton, almost any boost or eq can become a de facto overdrive.

  16. #15

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    If you want graphic/parametric, no doubt - Zoom MS70 or MS50. Cheaper, more precise and less noise than any analogue counterpart. Plus, it can kick a few other pedals off your board.

    If you want a bass/treble eq, the RC Booster is good, and I suppose the Tone Job is, too. My favourite is the Fromel Shape EQ.

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by aleksandar
    Maybe what you need is a compressor pedal...
    My thought exactly. If you want to increase the perceived loudness without pushing the amp much more a compressor might be the ticket.


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  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by jorgemg1984
    If you want graphic/parametric, no doubt - Zoom MS70 or MS50. Cheaper, more precise and less noise than any analogue counterpart. Plus, it can kick a few other pedals off your board.

    If you want a bass/treble eq, the RC Booster is good, and I suppose the Tone Job is, too. My favourite is the Fromel Shape EQ.
    jorgemg1984 what makes the Fromel more desirable fro you than the others?

  19. #18

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    Good question. Center frequencies were perfect for guitar, especially the 400hz fixed mids. And very warm and transparent, as all opa2134 pedals.No boost, though.

  20. #19

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    Christian, you may be looking for a compressor, actually. Especially if what you're trying to achieve is not necessarily altering the tone of your tele.

    Good compressors tend to be expensive. I think the best value is the Empress Compressor.

    Aside from compressors, you may want to look into the Voodoo Labs Giggity. It has some boost, it has subtle EQ capabilities, and with the "loudness" knob you can get some compression before it starts to break up. I've found it to be invaluable for playing with a loud band. If I can't hear myself, the last thing I want is to boost my level, causing the band to play louder and/or get pissed at me for cranking it up. Usually the solution is a matter of EQ and "perceived" volume, i.e. compression. The Giggity has been a valuable one-stop solution for that.

  21. #20

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    The amp-up guitar-down approach (discussed in another thread on this forum) does a nice job of rounding out the sound of the guitar in band situations for me.

  22. #21

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    A klon with the gain on zero and a tone cut could also work.

  23. #22

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    Clean boost or EQ pedal?-2018-04-30_1131-png

  24. #23

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    A different sort of animal:

    http://www.bbesound.com/products/sto...omp_ss-92.aspx

    Can be had 'used' cheaply.

    "Rounds out the sound" nicely for me at home with any amp/git combo.

    Also, you might like it for its own character.

  25. #24

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    The SP compressor (Xotic) is nice and small... Does anyone have an opinion on that?

  26. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77
    The SP compressor (Xotic) is nice and small... Does anyone have an opinion on that?
    I tried one out. I liked it but found it a bit noisy with single coils. However it had a lot of control for something that small, which was nice.

    Here’s a site with a ton of compressor reviews.

    Compressor Reviews

    Enjoy the rabbit hole.

  27. #26

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    Christian, I think you’ll get what you want from a clean boost with one knob for tone and one knob for level. The more dials and switches, the further you’ll get from the sound of your guitar plugged into your amplifier. Reference the recent “ amp up - guitar down” thread and then add a simple clean boost. A have a ModTone clean boostthe manufacturer gave me. The off-on switch can be a little noisy but I leave it on all the time so it’s cool with me.

  28. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77
    The SP compressor (Xotic) is nice and small... Does anyone have an opinion on that?
    Had one. Solid first try for what you need. There’s so much choice you can go crazy picking so I wouldn’t worry too much and just go for it and see if it’s at all what you want.


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  29. #28

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    OP, if boardspace/footprint is equally as important function, keep in mind that a mini pedal (ex. the SL comp) with side mounted jacks will take up the same amount of space as the next size up with top mounted jacks (ex. Diamond comp JR) and then again move up to ex. Wampler size with top mount jacks its only max ca. + 5-10mm in width over the mini size but alot more circuit.
    Then, if that wasnt enough, the Empress Para q (size ex.) placed vertically roughly equals regular sized sidemount jack pedals (ex. metalzone size etc.) Cheers.

  30. #29

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    I can't speak to the compressors, because I've never gotten along with one LOL.

    However- I have owned, and can recommend from the above posts:

    RC Booster - fantastic pedal, altho I found it had a little "sterile-ness" to it... but don't listen to me, people love the thing!

    EP Booster- great, but adds bass and that can't be disabled. May or may not work for your setup.

    Spark - to me, this was an improved RC Booster. Great pedal, lots of EQ capability.

    Klon/klones - yes indeed. I own one (a Rimrock Mythical OD), and it works great for this, and it is what I would use.


    And yes, the good ol' Boss GE-7, altho if it were ME, I'd go with the MXR version... but it would have to be the bigger one with the level control, the M108.

  31. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77
    Heya, quick question...

    When I play with an electric band I often feel I want to round out the sound of the guitar a bit more without necessarily introducing too much more drive.

    ..snip..

    So I wonder whether what I need is a clean boost (like the EP) or an EQ pedal... I think the EQ would be more versatile? But I'm not sure whether it could cover the base of a good sounding clean boost.
    EP Boost: Bought it, fell in love immediately, for a while that is... It's doing something to your signal that amazes you first, but then comes some sobering up. It's like a pretty face with too much make-up... for the lack of a better image. After some weeks I took it out of the signal chain and eventually sold it.

    MXR 10 Band graphic EQ: Very versatile and good sounding unit. If you want to use a drive pedal after (!) it, you might consider an upgrade of the IC chips because they are not the quietest. With clean tone or drive pedals in front of it it's perfectly silent. After a while I got tired of it because the sound always has this "bent" character. I thought I can hear the EQ curve - might have been imagination - but it bothered me. Also it's bulky and you need an 18 Volt PSU, the latter being the main reason for selling it again.

    I also used smaller graphic EQs from Donner, Mooer and others but didn't like them too much. The band (frequency) you want is never exactly there. I used parametric EQs in the studio a lot but wouldn't want one on stage, so I never tried.

    Boost Killer by Donner: Stumbled on that one by chance. They say it's an RC Boost clone, well so be it. I use it always and for everything, even bought some more of them, they are really cheap. I use them as clean boost, as basic equalizer (just treble and bass) as low gain drive pedal, sometimes I daisy-chain two of them to get a not-so-low-gain drive and so on.

    If I had to choose a pedal for the proverbial "lonesome island" this would be it.

    Here is a video:


    You buy them directly in China at Donnerdeal-Find Your Guitar Gear at Better Price-Free Shipping

    EDIT: Just watched the video again (it's been a while). The little knobs have white markers now, in the video they are still without. If the drive knob - the big one - is all left there is absolutely no drive, totally clean sound. They don't really show that in the video.
    Last edited by DonEsteban; 05-01-2018 at 07:47 AM.

  32. #31
    The new semiparametric Wampler EQuator it may be a good choice

    Clean boost or EQ pedal?-wampler-equator-jpg

  33. #32

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    I think EQ pedals are very useful. I have an MXR 6 band pedal. I don't know if I'm imagining it but I think it adds a bit of a artificial, processed sound. Although in live playing it's not noticeable.
    I think good boost pedals sound more natural. Even overdrive pedals with gain low can sound nicer than EQ pedals to boost mids or treble.

  34. #33

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    Old thread but an always current topic. I've tried a lot of pedals, spend periods of playing with a board, multieffect etc, and always come back to my favorite of plugging a guitar straight to the amp. But when using pedals, i go by the sound i want to achieve. One thing is a compressor, another is a boost or a low gain overdrive, etc. Different results though, so i go by common sense. Want a bluesy sound, i use a Ts808, want a clean country type sound, a compressor, a bit more gain but same amp sound, a transparent overdrive or eq. My pedal collection is driven by what's classic, what has been used a lot and has many musical references. For every type of pedal there are a usually only a few classics (and they are usually cheap too), so that's what i try to get.

    The most underrated pedal i own and use has been the Boss GE7 eq, in terms of versatility. You can use it for anything and with every type of guitar. Especially when it comes to gain type pedals, because the players picking hand is involved, you can never tell before hand what will work and what not, i've had great success and total failure both with expensive and dirt cheap pedals. Boutiques are an interesting journey, but you can also have a board with 5-6 Boss, Mxr, Ehx pedals and sound great and never need anything else.

  35. #34

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    Well two years on I still play with a Boss GE7 and a TC spark booster, (and a tubescreamer, why not) which do exactly the thing I was wanting in the OP.

    so my answer was, get both.

    i suppose I should get a EP boost or a Vertex or something, but if it ain’t broke....

    However the biggest cheap and cheerful success story for this year is - ART tube preamp into the Princeton. Sheer Tubey wonderment!

  36. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by sgosnell
    I have a Boss GE-7 that works fairly well for this. I like to use it as a boost (or cut, depending on the situation) by setting the gain slider to whatever works with the setup. I often just keep the sliders flat, but I may boost or cut some frequencies. I can have it off for rhythm, and switch it on for solos, or vice versa, depending on my taste at the time. It's old, and it was a freebie with an amp purchase, but it works.
    +1 on the Boss GE-7