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Overdriving channels alternative for techno drums
Old 26th January 2013
  #1
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
Overdriving channels alternative for techno drums

Hi,

I'm producing 90's techno.... And i often overdrive the drums with my desk (mackie 1202 or some old crap mixers), not the most subtil fx in the chain, i know, but it serve the purpose quite well.

I'm searching something cheap, compact and reliable to do that, some kind of preamp/distortion rack with high gain to replace my dying desk. Pedals or plug ins don't do this instant Armani, Mills, Bones (and so on) drums.

A rack unit with a few preamps would do the trick, i don't need high end gear to do that, that's the good news, but which one, any idea?

The setup would be frontend : Drummachine outs > preamps > converter

Something like that, but i don't trust the brand so much : SM Pro Audio β€’ Q-DI β€’

thanks!
Old 26th January 2013
  #2
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
What's your budget ? If running straight into A/D converters, you might need some sort of attenuation if the preamp out is running well into the red.

I might have no idea what i'm talking about...
Old 26th January 2013
  #3
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
Budget, not much... otherwise i take an old cheap desk for this purpose...
Let say max 200€...
As for attenuation, i'm okay, but it could be nice to have an input/output gain control indeed....
Old 26th January 2013
  #4
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
What do you use for attenuation ? I'm curious, i love this technique of overdriving channels. But it complicates things when digital recording comes into the equation.

As far as i know, sm pro audio have been around for 5-10 years at least. I think they'd be reliable but never has first hand experience with them.

Have you tried some sort of guitar overdrive pedal ? If yes, how did it sound ?
Old 26th January 2013
  #5
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Hmmm... why not just keep on using the Mackie? Does overdriving the mixer really do that much damage?

I wanna know cause I do this all the time
Old 26th January 2013
  #6
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
This is the only pedal I've used that comes close... everything else I've tried thins it out too much.

Old 26th January 2013
  #7
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
djugel : you mean damage to the sound or the mixer ?

I've been overdriving mixer channels for years on a behringer mixer. Never seemed to damage it in my case.
Old 26th January 2013
  #8
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
Thanks for the pedal suggestion! I'm really interested in overdrive lately and i'm curious about having different flavors.
Old 26th January 2013 | Show parent
  #9
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by xonox ➑️
djugel : you mean damage to the sound or the mixer ?

I've been overdriving mixer channels for years on a behringer mixer. Never seemed to damage it in my case.
whew... yeah I've been running my Yamaha MG into the ground. Works great.
Old 26th January 2013
  #10
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
for attenuation when needed, i'm using a passive attenuator like this, simple and usefull :
Level Pilot - Monitor Level at Your Fingertips | TC Electronic

Using the mackie is ok, but mine is old, pots are noisy etc... and for distortion a compact device would be nice.

+ 1 for the pedal, i don't know this one, and i agree generaly with pedals you lose to mush low end and gain to much noise in the process...

i've got some good results with overdriving the crappy mic input of some grooveboxes (akai xr20 comes in mind).
Old 26th January 2013
  #11
Gear Guru
 
SWAN808's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Id be curious if there was a cheap box you could drive...

Some people talk about the TL Audio fatman for this...for more money there are the chandler pedals...maybe one of the electroharmonix pedals...not sure there is a solidstate cheap preamp like a mackie channel...
Old 26th January 2013
  #12
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
I think the problem with pedals is that the impedance is not matched properly as they are usually made to be used with guitars which have a different impendance than line-level devices.

I'm not sure i'm right on this but it makes sense (in my mind).

This thread is very interesting because it's a very interesting technique to get new sounds out of existing gear and it is not discussed a lot usually.

I had some cool results messing around with the lowcut button and EQ on overdriven channels.

Thanks for the level pilot suggestion but it is kind of expensive if you need multiple ones. I want to build a small attenuator box soon, i figured i could make a really ghetto one for about 10$.
Old 26th January 2013
  #13
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
yes, attenuators are expensive. More than an old small desk! : )
Old 26th January 2013 | Show parent
  #14
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by xonox ➑️
I think the problem with pedals is that the impedance is not matched properly as they are usually made to be used with guitars which have a different impendance than line-level devices.

I'm not sure i'm right on this but it makes sense (in my mind).
No, you're right.. that's why for overdrive you should stick with Bass pedals.
Old 26th January 2013
  #15
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
Did some reading. We're going off-topic here but i thought it'd be interesting.

How to use guitar pedals with line levels. Q. Can I 're-amp' a line-level signal?

You need some sort of impendance conversion, a re-amp box to send signal to the pedal and then a direct inject to connect the pedal to a line level mixer. Seems fairly expensive as an experiment to find out if it prevents tone suckage when using pedals with synths and drum machines.
Old 26th January 2013 | Show parent
  #16
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by djugel ➑️
No, you're right.. that's why for overdrive you should stick with Bass pedals.
I saw a bass overdrive pedal by behringer for really cheap. I thought of getting it even if it's not the best, just to see if it would prevent much tone suckage.

At some point i'll try a reamp/DI but not soon.

Learning so much today, you guys are great!
Old 26th January 2013
  #17
Gear Guru
 
SWAN808's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
if you had a slightly higher budget I might recommend this new thing...

https://www.gearslutz.com/board/winte...tonebeast.html
Old 26th January 2013
  #18
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
but yeah.. that Bluetube one I posted above is the only I thought sounded good.. for kicks drums.
Old 27th January 2013
  #19
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
Anyone ever tried overdriving some cheap preamps? like vtb1 or dmp3?
Old 27th January 2013 | Show parent
  #20
Gear Guru
 
SWAN808's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by djugel ➑️
but yeah.. that Bluetube one I posted above is the only I thought sounded good.. for kicks drums.
its not too radical overdrive given its a guitar pedal?
Old 27th January 2013
  #21
Lives for gear
 
MORDICUS's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I ll suggest distortion ... Did you tried DECAPITATOR by SOUNDTOYS ?
On the hardware side CULTURE VULTURE by THERMIONIC CULTURE ... You might be able to rent it for a week end ..; it s on my buying list since a long time ....


PEACE


MORDICUS
Old 27th January 2013
  #22
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
Yep it works, wave shapers are good (best) for that crunchy but beefy raw sound, it's doable to reproduce one flavor of the sound if you're carefull with the settings....
But the big difference is that when you're playing with the drums you lose the magic, often it doesn't react in the same organic way. Try it with the decay on a 909 bass drum for example...
Old 29th January 2013
  #23
Gear Head
 
🎧 5 years
I bought an old Boss Bx16 mixer for 50€ and the overdrive/distortion is nice! you have 16 inputs + 2 sends
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