Category Archives: Audio

Quick Overdrive Demo

Here’s a quick demo of the ITS8 overdrive. Here’s the basic progression:

1) clean
2) od gain @ min, level @ 3:00
3) gain @ 11:00
4) gain maxed

It doesn’t sound as good as it would with a real amp, but you get the idea.

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Trem demo

Here’s a little recording that I did of the tremolo. I start out dry, then add the trem. I play with the speed and depth settings. At about the 1:45 mark I turn on the delay and play with some textural stuff. Right now I have the trem after the delay. I tried it the other way, and I think I like it better this way.

Anyway, here’s the clip. Feel free to post your thoughts, critiques, etc. This recording was done in Garageband with the software amp sim – not my Stulce. I don’t have a recording interface yet.

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Pedal Build: Day 2

Well, I drilled the enclosure and finished the initial assembly on the General Guitar Gadgets ITS8 that I started yesterday. I’m pleased to say that it worked the first time. I’m not going to post any gut shots yet, because it’s still a little messy in there. I made some mistakes with the drilling. I placed the jacks too high, which made it kind of hard to work around the PCB. Anyway, here’s the finished product from the outside.

General Guitar Gadgets ITS8 Build

Here’s a quick audio demo that I did using one of the Garageband software amp simulators. I play the same chord progression 4 times – once clean, then I go through each of the clipping options – LEDs, diodes, then boost (no clipping). For whatever reason, the LEDs are a lot louder than the 1N914 diodes. After that, I switch back to the diodes and play some lead stuff.

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I’m not done with it yet. I still need to experiment with some different components, but I’m pretty happy with it so far.

Delay sound clips: DD-20 & Echo Park

Alright, here are a couple of clips that I whipped up. They’re not exactly high-fidelity, since I ran my pedalboard into a Peavey keyboard amp and recorded it with the built-in mic on my MacBook, but you’ll get the idea.

The first one is a basic dotted eighth note delay. I play the same arpeggio-type thing 4 times. Here’s the breakdown:
1) DD-20 in digital mode
2) DD-20 in digital with the Echo Park on a long analog delay model
3) DD-20 in analog mode
4) DD-20 in analog with the Echo Park on a long analog delay model

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The second clip is a real basic sound-on-sound demo. I only recorded 2 layers, but you can do a lot more with it. It’s an excellent excuse to play a basic ii-V (Amin-D9) and practice some Dorian licks a la Santana’s version of Oye Como Va. Again, this is not a great demo, since the amp is not really EQ’d for distorted electric guitar. In addition, the output of the amp overdrives the mic in a couple of spots.

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Recording Equipment

I’ve been wanting to get my home recording situation up and running for a while now, and I’m trying to line out my options.

Audio Interfaces – There are hundreds of these on the market, and they all have pros and cons. For my purposes, I’m going to limit myself to firewire interfaces to keep the lowest possible latency in case I want to monitor myself while recording. In addition, I want to go as cheap as possible without getting a total piece of junk. Here are a couple of the options that I’ve come up with.

PreSonus INSPIRE 1394 – It has four inputs that can be used simultaneously – 2 XLRs and 2 Hi-Z 1/4″ instrument inputs, but I don’t think I’ll need more than 2. It has no hardward controls. All the settings (input gain, etc) are controlled via software. This one is $150.

M-Audio FireWire Solo – This one has 1 – XLR and 1 – 1/4″ jack, phantom power, bus power, yada yada yada. There’s the definite possibility that I’ll want to record in stereo, so this one is out, even though I tend to like M-Audio’s stuff. Oh and it’s $200 – $50 more expensive than the PreSonus.

The Apogee Duet would be the holy grail, but since it costs like $500, it’s out of my budget for the time being. As far as that goes, I don’t really need studio quality either since I’ll probably be using $100ish mics, which segues nicely to the next section.

As far as mics go, there are a couple of really basic options for close-miking guitar cabs (which will my primary mode of recording). Here are the main contenders.

Shure SM-57 – the granddaddy of instrument mics. It’s a great workhorse mic – it can be used for guitar, drums, or woodwinds, or even vocals in a pinch. This one runs $100.

Sennheiser e609 Silver – This mic is designed to withstand high sound pressure levels (SPLs) without distortion, which makes it perfect for close-miking guitar cabs. It’s design allows you to just hang the mic over the edge of the cab in front of the speaker if you’re in really close quarters, or you can use a stand to get more precise. This one is a little more expensive than the Shure at $110.

Sennheiser e906 – The e906 is a similar design as the e609, but has a mellower, less harsh sound. That upgrade comes with a price – $190.

Well, I’m not sure when I’ll ever get around to actually buying any of this stuff. It seems like things are always breaking around the house or on the cars or the kids or getting sick or something. I guess that’s life, eh?