Thursday, April 26, 2012

Drag

So this is me thinking out loud about my signal path.

I do not like anything pedal-wise between my guitar and my amps. And I specifically do not like any buffering. In fact, I like the sound of fifty feet of guitar cable between my guitar and the amp. And then I want to jumper the two amps together to drag down the signal even more.

Peter Cornish would not agree that's a good idea.

And I won't even say that listening back I could tell you that my guitar sounds less good with a nice little buffering thing in the signal path. Indeed my MSR Analog Delay sounds fantastic. I mean except to me, while I'm actually playing the guitar. I'd say that my biggest issue is the way the guitar feels when the signal is buffered. I've done a bunch of experimenting and really for me I just don't like the buffering and I do like the sound of long cables.

There's a lot of Internet complaining about passive volume pedals when you add a tuner to them. Not having to pass your signal through a tuner is another good reason to get those cheap little tuners that clamp onto the headstock. (That, and the fact you can read them without your glasses on in the dark.)

What my issue is that I'm totally incompetent at changing the volume on my guitar to get from a cleaner to a dirtier sound. I mean, I can't do it during a song while playing. And it's hard to get to the clean place on the knob(s) consistently. It's hard to see where the knobs are. And it's difficult to make the changes in the 16th-note that's the pickup to the verse (while you're playing.)

So talking to Ethan I had this idea to use a passive volume pedal with a "minimum volume" modification made to it. Now, because I'm dumb, I figured I'd just take a volume pedal and put a little shim or a bottle cap or something on it to make a physical "stop" at a level which I'd carefully calibrate to be the "verse" level of the guitar. Then with the volume pedal turned up all the way I'd be at the "chorus" position.

Ethan suggested that I actually mod the volume pedal with a couple resistors. I think it might be better to use a pot for that just so that I can more easily find the value I want it to sit at.

I'm not entirely sure I understand guitar wiring. In fact, I don't understand it. I get confused about where the ground wire should go. I dunno what kind of potentiometer to get for this project. It's not like they're terribly expensive.

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