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To eliminate FX hiss... Raise signal level?
Old 28th January 2013
  #1
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
To eliminate FX hiss... Raise signal level?

Hi all,

This is my first post. I use an old 90's Alesis Quadraverb between my electric guitar and amplifier. I really like this unit, but unfortunately there's an obnoxious level of background hiss. I have very limited effects knowledge, and therefore hope to solve the problem in the simplest way possible.

I could use a Noise Reduction pedal, but I'd prefer to fix the underlying problem. I might be wrong, but I suspect the comparatively low signal level coming directly from the instrument is the problem, since the unit is intended for use with a line-level input.

Is it possible to raise an instrument-level signal to line-level before it reaches the unit? If so, in the amplification process, will the sound quality suffer (for example, If I used a pre-amp pedal)?

From my research, I suspect raising the signal level is the best way to go, but I'm hoping to get some thoughts on general strategy, as well as specifics if possible. Apologies for my very limited knowledge. I;d greatly appreciate any insights!
Keith
Old 28th January 2013
  #2
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Rack effects need line level.
If you have a send and return on the amp use it there.
Guitar level is to low so when you run guitar into it and turn the output up, you're turning up the noise with it.
Old 28th January 2013
  #3
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
If you want to get the signal of your guitar up to line level you'll need a DI box but the signal could then be a bit hot for the amp...
A.
Old 28th January 2013
  #4
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Hi
A passive DI box would take the signal down further not 'up' You need a preamplifier which is suitable for the high impedance that a normal guitar wants to 'see'.
Your guitar needs about 30dB of gain (as a guess) so boosting your FX unit by this amount will give you massive hiss problem (that you know about!).
A typical mic preamp is not suitable for a guitar unless it has an 'instrument input'.
Matt S
Old 28th January 2013
  #5
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
@ Matt:
Ouch, yep, I stand corrected!
A.
Old 28th January 2013
  #6
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johnnyv's Avatar
 
13 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
I have this old Roland delay and I had to use a mixer to get it to integrate properly. Luckily I had this small DJ mixer kicking around. The problem is these units were designed to go in an effects loop on a mixer so this is the best solution.
The main problem I had was the impedance miss match sucked the tone right out of my guitar.

I tried the amps EFXS loop ( Fender Blues Deluxe ) and found out that the send was wired in directly BEFORE the pre amp,so still no poop. So a REAL effects loop will have to be after the pre amp stage to work properly.

The cool thing about the mixer is I can keep both my guitars plugged in ready to go. One is signal coil so it get a little more gain now and not have to turn the amp up. It's real fast to dial in the amount of effect return dry/wet so better control of the overall sound.
I use a second aux output to my tuner and then one side of mains goes to FOH mixer the other to the amp. It's like the ultimate DI. I can even plug 2 more guitars in , like my acoustic.

Any small mixer with an external efxs loop will work. They are cheap. Just don;t buy a Behringer if you need it to last a few years.
Old 29th January 2013
  #7
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
Thanks to all who responded! @Manfrensengensen, I don't believe my amp has a send and return, since it is an old-fashioned style amp, a Fender Vibroverb reissue. @johnny, I think that also rules out the loop mixer possibility for me. Sounds like I'd be better off if I have a Blues Deluxe like you have.
Old 29th January 2013 | Show parent
  #8
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Syson ➑️
Hi
A passive DI box would take the signal down further not 'up' You need a preamplifier which is suitable for the high impedance that a normal guitar wants to 'see'.
Your guitar needs about 30dB of gain (as a guess) so boosting your FX unit by this amount will give you massive hiss problem (that you know about!).
A typical mic preamp is not suitable for a guitar unless it has an 'instrument input'.
Matt S
@Matt, thanks for the insights, sounds like your suggestion for a pre-amp will suit my situation best. One question if you get a chance, will using a pre-amp negatively affect my tone? I suspect it's a moot point since I'm already altering tone by using the Quadraverb, but wondering if I'll need to invest in a high-quality pre-amp pedal, or if any will do.
Old 29th January 2013
  #9
Lives for gear
 
Bristol_Jonesey's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
If this is for recording purposes you'd be better off recording it without the Quadraverb and adding it in when mixing
Old 29th January 2013
  #10
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
The problem using a preamp or something to raise the level is now the effects unit will work correctly but the line level going from effects unit is now too hot for the guitar amp input and is probably the wrong impedance as well.

A re-amp box can take line level and drop it back to instrument level/high impedance.
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