Wireless -> Fuzz = A$$$

Discussion in 'Pedals' started by SteveC, Nov 24, 2017.

  1. SteveC

    SteveC Get off my f*cking lawn. V.I.P. Member

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    I know all about the impedance issues around running a guitar that is NOT connected via a cable, directly to the input of a Fuzz Pedal. I also know that there are some models of Fuzz, that do not have this problem. Neither of those options are something that I want to pursue.

    So, here's the thing: I run wireless. That's how it goes. I have ZERO desire to use a cable to connect to my pedalboard. As you might guess, I have this problem. My "workaround" has been to dial down the output of the Wireless (from unity to about -17dB). That makes it a lot better, but still not optimal.

    I have an older version of the RambleFX Tonebender Fuzz. That thing is amazing, IMO. It's my go to fuzz. Since moving to wireless, I've had fits trying to get it to sound good, until I discovered the "gain fix" on my receiver. The new (V3) version of the Tonebender has a feature that allows you to add resistance to the input of the fuzz, to help "un-buffer" the Lo-Z output of things like wireless units and wah pedals. It's not the exact loading of a pick up, but it a HUGE help!

    But, that also really dials down the output going into the rest of the pedals on my board. When, I connect with a cord (past the wireless), there is a decidedly better tone. So, I'd like to get my wireless gain back up to unity and solve the fuzz box input problem for good.

    I was trading emails with Tim of RambleFX for a couple days (he is such a good guy - he returned an email on Thanksgiving evening!). His suggestion was to try a 20K R in series with the input of the Fuzz and/or build one of these (pickup simulator) to put on the output of my wireless.

    Does anyone have any experience with this?

    http://www.muzique.com/lab/pickups.htm

    Screen Shot 2017-11-24 at 10.30.18 AM.png


    Any and all suggestions, other than, "Ditch the wireless and run a cord directly to your pedal board." or, "Buy a different fuzz pedal." are appreciated :)
     
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  2. gibsonguitar1988

    gibsonguitar1988 Senior Member

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    I don't have any suggestions other than to say you are right.

    Germanium pedals be it fuzzes or treble boosters need to be the first in line and connected to the guitar with a cable so they can "see" the pickups, for lack of a better term.

    Silicon can also be tricky. But trying to get a vintage or vintage styled Germanium pedal to work with a wireless or with a buffer in front is a lost cause, IMO. Tis a shame because I'm a Germanium or die kind of guy when it comes to classic FF/TB circuits. Muffs, I don't care either way.
     
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  3. VictorB

    VictorB Formerly LZF Super Mod

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  4. SteveC

    SteveC Get off my f*cking lawn. V.I.P. Member

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    That won't solve the problem. I did look at it, though. It's a "between the guitar and transmitter" device. They specifically say not to use it after the receiver. So, assuming it actually does something useful, it cannot change the output impedance of the receiver.

    I suppose what I will try is to make a patch cable with a 20K resister in series. I'll use that to connect the output of my receiver to the input of the Tonebender. If that makes life better, I may have to build that pickup simulator and see how that works.

    Ideally, I would prefer to just buy something - LOL.
     
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  5. Who

    Who Who is not here. Please leave a message.... Premium Member

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    I see a market for "wearable pedals"

    Most of the pedal circuitry is small. Let's have "pedals" built right into the wireless pack. We'll switch them via Bluetooth.

    We could have a utility belt, with all the effects that benefit from a wired chain.
     
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  6. SteveC

    SteveC Get off my f*cking lawn. V.I.P. Member

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    So, drinking wine and lamenting about solving this problem led me to Mouser Electronics...

    After about 15 minutes of shopping and $25 worth of stuff and I'm going to build the above pickup simulation circuitry in a box about the size of an EP Booster.

    I'll start a thread when the shit arrives for the build.

    Screen Shot 2017-11-24 at 7.08.12 PM.png
     
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  7. sonar

    sonar Senior Member

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    You're a more patient man than me.

    My wireless is pretty much exclusively for the band, where I don't use fuzz. (Even some modulation and OD boxes can sound wonky, but I digress.) When I want to get my Hendrix fix the Mogami cables get pulled out. I have enough problems trying to deal with Fuzz to Wah, Octave and Univibe, let alone adding the Shure wireless into the mix.

    Please keep us up to date on the project.
     
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  8. VictorB

    VictorB Formerly LZF Super Mod

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    Apparently Line 6 wireless systems do not have this problem.
     
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  9. SteveC

    SteveC Get off my f*cking lawn. V.I.P. Member

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    It really depends on your fuzz box, not your wireless receiver. It's the buffered output of all wireless receivers (which is always relatively Lo-Z) that causes problems with (some/most/many) fuzz boxes. You can mitigate the problem, like I do, by lowering the gain on the output of the wireless receiver, which helps, but it also affects other devices downstream, too.

    Some Si based fuzz boxes are less susceptible to being fed a Lo-Z source, but almost all Ge based units will have difficulty with it. They all prefer seeing a Hi-Z input, which is what you get from a direct cable to your guitar.

    That's why I am building the pickup simulator I showed above. The parts arrived yesterday and I should be able to start the build sometime next week :)
     
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  10. VictorB

    VictorB Formerly LZF Super Mod

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    Nice. Let us know how this works out.
     
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  11. SteveC

    SteveC Get off my f*cking lawn. V.I.P. Member

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    Fingers crossed.

    I'd like to hit my OCD with more gain than I can now, because I have to keep it so low to stop the Tonebender from "sputtering". That, in turn affects my non-dirt volume (tone) and I have to fuck with the EP booster to balance levels between clean & dirt. I even bought that shitty, little fuzz box (which, ironically couldn't give a rat's ass what kind of signal it is fed) to use as a boost for leads when using the OCD, because if I hit the other fuzz, the volume DROPS. Ugh!

    In an ideal world, this simulator will let me crank up the output gain of the Shure receiver, without screwing up the Tonebender. Then, I can lower the dirt on the OCD, which will allow me to crank up my clean volume and all will be volume leveled when switching.... LOL

    Holy Shit! Pass the Tylenol :)
     
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