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Powering stompboxes


hamster.cz

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Hi everyone,

 

I've got an annoying problem with my effect units. I use Boss DS-1, CH-1 and DOD DFX94 digital delay and power them with power supply. And I use Laney TF400 and sometimes small 'noname' (probably bass :o) amp.

 

And here goes my trouble: when i connect all stompboxes into Laney's effect loop, there is a awful hum on chorus and distortion, delay is ok (luckily, everytime). This hum is independent on amps volume, so when playing very loud, it "disappears" in sound, but when playing quietly-practicing at home, the hum is pretty outstanding.

 

Temporarily I solve this with connecting chorus ahead of amp and into fx loop plug just the delay and power each fx with extra supply. In this case the chorus produces sufferable sound, but just for a clean channel.

And when playing through the small amp and all effect are between guitar and amp, the chorus with delay acts quite well, only the ds-1 is messing the sound.

 

I'm pretty unhappy of this situation. If you have any advice or suggestion, how could i solve this, i'd be very grateful.

sorry for my english

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i tried the effect loop of my laney lc15r, and found out that it also a bit noisy :(

i didn't have the pedalpower 2 at the time, and not so much effects, so i'm not sure if it was the power supply or only the a crap effect loop of my amp...

i can try it out when i get back my amp from repair

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Originally posted by sub rosa

Hmm, it's not really the done thing to put distortion fx in the loop, they are usually better in line.

 

 

it's not affected by the distortion. i've made a 'pedalboard' - these 3 boxes side by side - and plug into fx loop. not using ds-1, purely experimenting with adding the gain, but the hum is there (on chorus) when i plug just chorus with delay.

 

With batteries it would work perfectly, but for me kinda unacceptable solution. I'm thinking about better stabilized power supply (but i'dont think there's the snag) or about DI box or something similar ...? I ve got no overview in this.

 

t_e_l_e: if you might tell me then, i'd be pleased. imho, fx loops are constructed the same way on amps, so don't belive in laney's mistake here. My amp has A LOT! possibilities of connecting the fxs into loop and it faults in evrey way. I use serial loop...

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Are the Boss pedals powered by a dedicated Boss power supply? I ask becuase a few years ago I tried powering a Boss Chorus pedals with a standard adapter and the hum was unbelievable. It cleared up as soon as I splashed out on the'proper' Boss supply.

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Originally posted by Headlow

Are the Boss pedals powered by a dedicated Boss power supply? ...



Nope, i dont use original boss supply. Maybe that's the point, but i think that between original and non-orginal ain't such a difference. Boss should make the supply better according to reason of application, but on the other hand 9 volts are the same, no matter supply label.
I mean, why should i pay 3x more when i dont need to. boss sticker needn't to be a sureness of better fx work. i've tried few different supplies and the result was pretty same, still humming.

Headlow: no-brand, universal, supplies are giving higher voltages than are assigned (approx. 12,7V instead of 9V), so it can be the reason of humming chorus. I'm bit interested in electronics, either in the begining of studying it, so that's the reason of my attitude as well as i'm not a wealthy student :D So i'd like to figure out not only how, but also why :confused:

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Originally posted by hamster.cz

Nope, i dont use original boss supply. Maybe that's the point, but i think that between original and non-orginal ain't such a difference.

Well, it can be a huge difference, and it is most likely what you are hearing... :)

Stompboxes are very simple creatures that use the 9 volts DC more or less directly to create the audio signal. Thus, any ripple in the power source (due to a poorly filtered/regulated adapter) will show up as a loud 100Hz hum. No-name adapters can be noisy as hell, due to insufficient filtering, and the regulators can also be quite off.

However, it is quite normal even for a Boss PSA to deliver more than the spec'ed 9 volts when you measure it unloaded. As soon as you give it any sort of load (i.e. make it power a pedal), the voltage will usually drop down to where it is supposed to be.

I'm willing to bet that the only solution is to get a decent power supply that is designed for audio use - for just a few Boss-type pedals, I'd look no further than the Boss PSA. If you need more, you can always check out the Cioks products from Denmark.

Once you've sorted your power out, you need to have a think about your signal chain. As others have said, overdrive/distortion/fuzz pedals should go in front of the amp, and the rest can go either in front of in the loop (depending on how much amp distortion you're using). Keep in mind that you may need separate power supplies for the pedals in front and in the loop, respectively. This is to avound ground loops (which also show up as hum). If you were to run the DS-1 in front and the rest in the loop, you could just stick with battery power for the DS-1. It uses very little power, so an alkaline should last very long.

In any case, you need to shell out the cash for a decent power supply. It may cost a bit more, but you get what you pay for...

/Andreas

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