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Vintage threads from the first ten years

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3/28/2005 8:16 PM
total loser Boosters
poll: what is your favorite booster, and why...
3/29/2005 8:50 AM
Much like ODs, it's totally dependant on the amp and guitar and target tone. With boosts, it also depends on how I'm using it. Is it to goose the front end of an amp into OD or is it to increase the volume without changing the tone much? When I used a boost in an effects loop for a volume boost (with no change in tone), I used as Boss GE-7 set flat. Worked well. The only other boosts I have are a ZVex SHO and a FDII in 'Comp Cut' mode. They both work well but again, it depends on the other things in the chain.  
FWIW, I almost never use a totally clean boost to goose the front end of an amp into more OD. It seems I can always find something with a little color and/or grit that works better.
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3/31/2005 10:51 AM
I almost can't live WITHOUT a clean(ish) booster in front of an amp. I don't really have a preference, I've got a bunch, including things of my own design. I just grab whatever's handy. The Duncan pickup booster is kinda nifty in that it has a couple of tone/eq settings that can help dial in the perfect tone. For years I've used an MXR micro-amp clone that I built back before they were reissued. Primarily I play through old style tube amps, Fenders, Danelectros, and Valco(Harmony, Supro, National, Gretsch, Ward's Airline, Karpek, etc.)
4/19/2005 11:33 AM
Ben N

I used to use a Microamp at the beginning of my pedalboard, always on, to feed a strong signal down the line. It improved my S/N so much that I was able to turn off the noise gate I had been using, and that in turn made a noticeable improvement in my tone. When I cut down on the total number of pedals in my chain, the Microamp went as well. I now use an SD-1 (or TS-9) set for very low gain and high level as a lead boost (but mostly into a Barber Direct Drive, not straight into the amp). I like its mid-hump and ability to dial up a bit of additional distortion and compression for this purpose. I have also used compressors (Dynacomp or Marshall ED-1), overdrives (a stock Blues Driver, a Marshall BB-2 in clean mode and a Tech21 Comptortion) and a DOD FX-10 Bifet Preamp as "clean" boosters. They are all useful, some better with different amps. Not a tremendous amount of difference between this group, as except for the compressors they don't really change your tone except for boosting the volume, so as between them I would choose on the basis of versatility--what other tricks do they do?  
But then again, it depends on your needs. An AMZ Minibooster or Fulltone Fatboost thicken up your tone; a Zvex SHO or AMZ Mosfet Boost clean it up and add sparkle as they beat the hell out of your amp's input. Some boost specific frequency ranges, like the Rangemaster and progeny, or the Armstrong Purple Peaker and Red Ranger, or the Orange or Vox Treble & Bass Boost. A lot of people just use an eq pedal to do this (starting with David Gilmour).  
Take a look at the clean boost shootout--their is a link from AMZ, Jack Orman's site.  
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