• We would like to remind our members that this is a privately owned, run and supported forum. You are here at the invitation and discretion of the owners. As such, rules and standards of conduct will be applied that help keep this forum functioning as the owners desire. These include, but are not limited to, removing content and even access to the forum.

    Please give yourself a refresher on the forum rules you agreed to follow when you signed up.

Drive Block Status

Freds55

Veteran
I am with Cliff on this. Since I got the AXE3 I dont use drive blocks for heavy and even dirty tones anymore. I still use one on for my cleanish sound. Just to add a little grit and shimmer. Cant get that sound without an SDD preamp drive block.
I’m really digging my axe fx iii I have used pedals for a long time, but I can see that the fx iii is going to change all that I have a lot to learn.
 

unix-guy

Legend!
I'm trying to keep and open mind but so far, nope, still not digging drive pedals. I've matched five pedals so far and the only ones I kinda like are the TS-808 and SD-1. Just finished the Hermida Zendrive which is supposed to be so great and that thing sounds like cr@p IMO.
Well I certainly appreciate you not binding the rest of us to your preferences in this regard. ;)

I'm mostly using the TS-808 Mod and the ACB but I find I like some of the various pedals with specific amps.

Do you do a lot of pre-EQ with EQs or Filters?
 

Rocket Brother

Forum Addict
Even if it worked you’d have to change that parameter while you also adjusted your guitar volume pot, so it would be kind of a PITA in my opinion.

It’s not like you can’t get some clean up as is too, just isn’t the same as certain fuzz pedals hooked up straight to the guitar, but only certain fuzz pedals do this even, really just germanium.

A lot of players don’t even like germanium, finding it too wooly and muddy, but others do like how it cleans up. A lot prefer a silicon fuzz which doesn’t clean up the same bit that can be a bit more cutting sound. Early era Hendrix vs Band of Gypsy era for example.

Other fuzz like a big muff works fine after a buffer with many preferring it that way, and I even run my hardware fuzz in the Axe loop, works and sounds fine.

Point is, it’s easy to blow this buffer and cleanup stuff out of proportion. Isn’t a factor in most cases, just for certain vintage fuzz deigns, ala a analogman man nkt275, bit if you like bc108 or similar, it’s not even a real issue.

Bottom line is guys are doing Hendrix, Gilmour and all those classic fuzz tones with the Axe and it sounds great, so sure one can complain about the cleanup, or that a certain big muff isn’t modeled which Gilmour used, but the results speak for themselves.

Has anyone felt Brit Floyd doesn’t sound “right” because their Axe’s didn’t have a certain model ? I don’t think so, they are always spot on tone wise. Heck, Bobby didn’t even use a muff models at all and sounded great.
Spot on !
 

vkcarrillo

Regular
Man, drive pedals and stacking are critical to me. I have the real world collection (and depleted bank account) to prove it. My style hinges on the lo gain spectrum with stacking OD flavors into a clean or early break up amp. Take your time Cliff cuz if you nail this I can sell all my pedals...even the Centaur!
 

Perdikament

Forum Addict
That’s funny, I always try the Zendrive & can never find it useable. But then again I personally don’t use any of the drives aside from the Shimmer. That one I’ll use. The FET & SDD I use though. I really don’t even care for the TS’s. None of my patches use either one of em.
 

Smilzo

Forum Addict
I'm trying to keep and open mind but so far, nope, still not digging drive pedals. I've matched five pedals so far and the only ones I kinda like are the TS-808 and SD-1. Just finished the Hermida Zendrive which is supposed to be so great and that thing sounds like cr@p IMO.
Sometimes cr@p rocks. :D
Guitar pedals or amps are like a spice... even if you dislike it, some chef can bring wonderful dish out of it.

I matched drive and amp since Standard time. Distortion+ was always spot on, tubescreamer was good, fuzz not so good, the feel was not there. I don't like tubescreamer and fuzz, but sometimes they are useful for a certain tone or feel. I started to like fuzz in the last few years, they give some unique crappy feel that stood out into the crowd!
 

DLC86

Forum Addict
I'm trying to keep and open mind but so far, nope, still not digging drive pedals. I've matched five pedals so far and the only ones I kinda like are the TS-808 and SD-1. Just finished the Hermida Zendrive which is supposed to be so great and that thing sounds like cr@p IMO.
Results with drive pedals, as you probably already know, depend greatly on the amp you run them thru, most of fender and Marshall amps don't react well to pedals IMHO.
In the analog world I fell in love with and used for several years a Hiwatt, an amp famous for making almost any pedal sound good.
Before you give up I suggest you to try them thru it.

It's also important to find the sweet spot on the output knob of the drive which basically sets the balance between the pedal distortion and the amp breakup.
That alone can make you go from farty to creamy (not talking about diarrhea here) tones .

And if you want to hear one of the best overdrives on the planet, get a Cornish ss2 or ss3 and play it thru a hiwatt. :cool:
 

1poorplayer

Forum Addict
Some guys can use fuzz pedals and odd ball drive pedals , and I’ll think they sound unique and interesting.
Then I’ll try a few of the same ones , and end up thinking they sound like crap.
The odd stuff tends to lead to new ideas and can inspire me to write new material , but ; like so many , I gravitate towards the sounds of only a few select amps. I’ll end up tweaking the odd stuff to try to make it sound like my normal sounds. ( which defeats the purpose ).
I appreciate the fact that @FractalAudio is committed to perfecting drives for guys who use them , despite not personally liking the way they sound.
 

peteri

Inspired
To be honest for me - one 'clean' boost, like a Klon or similar

One TS boost

Or bundle both of those into the KoT clean and drive side.

Add a Fuzz Face

All I will ever, ever need

But very grateful for all the work
 

hippietim

Fractal Fanatic
I don’t use drives unless I have to go from clean to dirty. I don’t like switching amp models or channels - I never liked it in the real world either.

I do like using the tape boost in front of an amp on the edge of breakup.
 

GotMetalBoy

Forum Addict
I'm trying to keep and open mind but so far, nope, still not digging drive pedals. I've matched five pedals so far and the only ones I kinda like are the TS-808 and SD-1. Just finished the Hermida Zendrive which is supposed to be so great and that thing sounds like cr@p IMO.
I've always liked the SD-1 but my guitar hero was Zakk Wylde when I started to play guitar and the SD-1 was low priced. I also used to like the Marshall Shred Master but mine sounded completely different than the model in the Axe-Fx II/III. I personally like using Pre-EQ more than Drives.

I used to have a really old MXR distortion+ from 1981 21st Week and I was so excited to use it but I thought it was broken it sounded so bad. Some people can get good results from the MXR distortion+ but I am not one of those people. I was cleaning out some old gear and was going to toss it but I'm glad I looked up the used price. I sold my MXR distortion+, Marshall Shred Master and Axe-Fx II Mark I and was able to buy an Axe-Fx III.
 

dpeterson

Fractal Fanatic
I'm trying to keep and open mind but so far, nope, still not digging drive pedals. I've matched five pedals so far and the only ones I kinda like are the TS-808 and SD-1. Just finished the Hermida Zendrive which is supposed to be so great and that thing sounds like cr@p IMO.
I'm with Cliff, the whole pedal thing boggles my mind. People cry about the warmth of tubes, and then proceed to put 200 pedals in front of it with miles of cable. My jcm800 i had to boost with an EQ to get any kind of gain out of it. Then I went to the Boogie stuff, studio, quad, triaxis. I prefer gain from the amp. But hey this is why there are so many options right?
 

peteri

Inspired
I'm with Cliff, the whole pedal thing boggles my mind. People cry about the warmth of tubes, and then proceed to put 200 pedals in front of it with miles of cable. My jcm800 i had to boost with an EQ to get any kind of gain out of it. Then I went to the Boogie stuff, studio, quad, triaxis. I prefer gain from the amp. But hey this is why there are so many options right?
Absolutely agree with this - not wanting to derail a thread, but that's something that I just don't get with people like 'That Pedal Show', who will openly talk about how they don't like modellers in any shape or form, it has to be tubes etc.

And then have 4-5 drives (all op-amp and diode based), running into 2-3 Strymons into the front end of an amp which is basically just compressing and making loud.

That used to be my world, Fractal is much easier and lighter!
 

GreatGreen

Forum Addict
I've only ever found drive pedals useful in a couple of situations.

1. TS808 style bass cut and volume boost for increasing touch sensitivity and putting just a little bit more fire under an already high gain tone. No surprise there.
2. Andy Timmons-esque tones. Setups where you have a low passed, relatively low gain drive pedal going into a bass-heavy clean amp for a soft-breakup but still evenly saturated sound.

They're always best when used as flavoring, and almost always sound like crap when used as your core tone. At best, they can provide an interesting texture to an already good tone.
 

shatteredsquare

Forum Addict
People like drive pedals until they get bit by a Mark / Triaxis...because Mark / Triaxis gives you the drive circuit customization that an SD-1 + JCM800 gives you, in one box.
 

effulgent

Inspired
I'm trying to keep and open mind but so far, nope, still not digging drive pedals. I've matched five pedals so far and the only ones I kinda like are the TS-808 and SD-1. Just finished the Hermida Zendrive which is supposed to be so great and that thing sounds like cr@p IMO.
do you use boosts?
 
Top Bottom