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Why do so few people use drive pedals in parallel?


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the right combination can sound {censored}ing amazing!


with drive pedals in series, you lose so much definition and consistency of sound. that's good if you want a noticeable change in tone/gain type etc, but running two in parallel means you keep your base sound and just add another flavour alongside it.


i just spent about 6 hours playing around and trying to sort out part of my pedalboard. i started with just a Line 6 DM-4, went through a load of different combinations of dirt pedals with ended up with a big box Rat and Danelectro Drive v1 running in parallel.


and i also had delay pedals after each of the drives.. so i can have:


- Both signals Clean.

- Rat + Clean

- Dano + Clean

- Rat + Dano in parallel.


- Clean with Delay + Clean

- Rat with Delay + Clean

- Rat + Dano with Delay

- Both with Delay

etc, etc.


i have the Rat set for low gain, and the Dano up at about 3/4 gain, and it sounds {censored}ing huge. so starting with a clean signal, then turn on the Rat for a bit of hair and treble boost = nice jangly chords/good for clean arpeggio stuff but will break up a little if pushed. then keep that exact sound but switch on the Dano for a big slab of low end, higher-gain sound for the chorus/noisy bits.


i guess it's because i'm adding 'more' to the signal, instead of changing it to something else like with pedals linked in series.


other noteworthy combo's:

Rat + MBM IC Big Muff

TS-9 + Rat


very disappointed to hear the amount of tone i was losing by using the DM-4's drives. that Tube Driver model though.. {censored} i need a proper version of that pedal.



CSB. :thu:

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how do you run them in parallel, like with a boss line selector or something?



I have a TC Electronics Nova Drive which is basically a dual analog overdrive pedal with a tubescreamer and Rat pedal combined into it. You can set it up so you can switch the order they play in or put them in parallel mode. Add to that that the tubescreamer is like a Sparkle Drive where you can mix the clean signal in and that you can make up to 16 presets makes for a very useful pedal. I've been able to get some really good tones out of it.

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Two reasons I don't:


1. It's hard to find a splitter/mixer that works well with dirt pedals and before an amp.


2. If I have a clean and an od sound in parallel, digging in makes the clean really loud, but the OD just gets dirtier. I always find that solos sound crap on clean and strumming sound crap through OD, I tweak for an hour then give up.

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I tried it for a few months and decided it didn't add much for what I do. I'd get these quite subtle blends of distortion tone going on that sounded great in my own sessions, then at band practice all the fine detail would be lost and I'd be falling over myself trying to rearrange my signal path. I also found it harder to keep on top of effects changes and knowing what was going on live.


of course, I'm quite retarded so if you make it work for you, that's all that matters!

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