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  1. #1
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    10.26.16 @ 03:37 PM
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    Default Balance Album and Tour Tone

    The Balance album and tour tone is what I have been trying to get. I just love that sound. I have a full w/d/w setup with a 5150 combo, etc, etc, and I have a good idea what detunes to use to get that Balance sound (thanks Jim!).

    But here is my problem - the effects sound very EVH-ish, but my amp doesn't. I would like some suggestions on how to get my 5150 combo to sound like the Balance tone -- disregarding effects. I just need that base tone.

    Here is my 5150 combo setup:

    1995 5150 Combo ABSOLUTELY STOCK. (but no back panel covering the speakers)

    1 generic NOT LABELED Chinese 12AX7 in V1 (I heard these were what came in the 5150 -- and what Ed used??... plus, I did an A/B sound comparison using 5 or 6 different brands/types of 12AX7s and this one sounded the most 'chimey' which is key to the Balance sound.) The rest of the preamp tubes are very new JJ 12AX7s from Eurotubes.

    6L6GC / GT-5881 (Older) Groove Tubes powertubes. I have also run the stock chinese 6L6's in the amp, but did not notice much of a difference....

    I have the 5150 cranked anywhere from 5-7 post using my Weber Mass Lite 100 Watt attenuator. I have it set down fairly quiet, but still loud enough to play a good sized restaurant or bar. There is also a High or Low switch on the Weber that has a HUGE impact on the amps tone, and I wonder if that is part of the problem... But I have not EQ'ed the attenuation as the Weber allows -- I want it to be as transparent as possible.

    I play guitar right into amp, and my guitar has a Tone Zone in it.


    Whew... I think that's all. If anyone can tell me where I am going wrong, it would be greatly appreciated!

  2. #2
    On Fire
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    04.11.13 @ 12:43 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrjstudios View Post
    The Balance album and tour tone is what I have been trying to get. I just love that sound. I have a full w/d/w setup with a 5150 combo, etc, etc, and I have a good idea what detunes to use to get that Balance sound (thanks Jim!).

    But here is my problem - the effects sound very EVH-ish, but my amp doesn't. I would like some suggestions on how to get my 5150 combo to sound like the Balance tone -- disregarding effects. I just need that base tone.

    Here is my 5150 combo setup:

    1995 5150 Combo ABSOLUTELY STOCK. (but no back panel covering the speakers)

    1 generic NOT LABELED Chinese 12AX7 in V1 (I heard these were what came in the 5150 -- and what Ed used??... plus, I did an A/B sound comparison using 5 or 6 different brands/types of 12AX7s and this one sounded the most 'chimey' which is key to the Balance sound.) The rest of the preamp tubes are very new JJ 12AX7s from Eurotubes.

    6L6GC / GT-5881 (Older) Groove Tubes powertubes. I have also run the stock chinese 6L6's in the amp, but did not notice much of a difference....

    I have the 5150 cranked anywhere from 5-7 post using my Weber Mass Lite 100 Watt attenuator. I have it set down fairly quiet, but still loud enough to play a good sized restaurant or bar. There is also a High or Low switch on the Weber that has a HUGE impact on the amps tone, and I wonder if that is part of the problem... But I have not EQ'ed the attenuation as the Weber allows -- I want it to be as transparent as possible.

    I play guitar right into amp, and my guitar has a Tone Zone in it.


    Whew... I think that's all. If anyone can tell me where I am going wrong, it would be greatly appreciated!
    To be honest man I really dont think the tone zone is close to the EVH sound. Dimarzio says its the closest thing but I have a tone zone and I have a EVH music man and let me tell you the EVH pickup is very TREBLY! AND THE TONE ZONE VERY MIDRANGY AND THE HIGHS ARE ROLLED OFF WHEN HITTING THE HIGHER BENDS AND FRETS. THATS JUST MY 2 CENTS . I THINK YOUR BETTER OFF WITH A PAF PRO OR SOMETHING WITH MORE TREBLE.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Len75 View Post
    To be honest man I really dont think the tone zone is close to the EVH sound. Dimarzio says its the closest thing but I have a tone zone and I have a EVH music man and let me tell you the EVH pickup is very TREBLY! AND THE TONE ZONE VERY MIDRANGY AND THE HIGHS ARE ROLLED OFF WHEN HITTING THE HIGHER BENDS AND FRETS. THATS JUST MY 2 CENTS . I THINK YOUR BETTER OFF WITH A PAF PRO OR SOMETHING WITH MORE TREBLE.
    Well, that may be, but it is the closest thing I've got. Plus, I would hope that even if I had Ed's exact settings for Balance, some slight EQ'ing would bring the tone zone's highs right back up to where Ed's were. Thanks.

  4. #4
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    try 6, 2or3 and 5 for the eq and then 3 and 7 or 4 and 7 for the pres and res.

  5. #5
    Banned! The Dude's Avatar
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    11.09.08 @ 08:18 AM
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    http://www.wolfgangregistry.com/5150...-settings.html

    Some suggestions at this site are good, some not....plenty there though.

    Good luck.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Dude View Post
    http://www.wolfgangregistry.com/5150...-settings.html

    Some suggestions at this site are good, some not....plenty there though.

    Good luck.
    I've tried most or all of those -- they just are not too good, but thanks.

  7. #7
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    Ok, just took your suggestions Jim:

    I set it at | PRE:6 | LO:6 MID:2 HI:5 | POST:5 | RES:3.5 PRES:7 |

    That sounds pretty good, but there is still some weird harsh "clipping" kinda sounding tone in the midrangey area -- not the smooth and subtle low end of the Balance era. I think the cause of that is either my tone zone in a VERY dark sounding guitar, or it may be my crappy Groove Tubes power tubes breaking up a little strangely. (It also could be partially the attenuator, but I doubt it, because I noticed the same type of thing when I ran the amp up to about 7 post without the attenuator one time... hmmm...)

    Also, the sound slightly lacks some of the chime of the Balance tone, but that could entirely be me not using a EBMM EVH, which seems to have that chimey bright clean tone built in.

    Anyway -- now that the amp is closer, I turned on the effects just to see how it would sound. I was a little disappointed. With the amp much closer to the Balance tone, a lot of imperfections in my effects were really brought out. They made the tone sound dark, and much "boomier." Kinda like a chorus pedal can do. In stead of crisping up the tone like Ed's detune did, it made it slightly mushier and echo-ey sounding.

    I use a Digitech 2120 for my detune, and I am using "dual detune" set at +/-9% detune, with NO detune delays. It is panned hard right and left and is running at 100% wet in the mix (Just like you had me set it up before Jim.)

    Does anyone know what Ed's Eventide settings for Balance/Balance Tour were? I know he used some sort of +/- detune and maybe some dutune delays. I hear it is called the "womanizer" or something in the Eventide Harmonizer___-3000's presets and he modified it slightly.

    I know this is extremely picky, but if this type of detune effect is off even a little, it sounds very fake. Thanks everyone.

  8. #8
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    04.02.10 @ 06:19 PM
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    those are the settings ed used. the detune should actually crisping the sound up. i really believe the cabs have alot to do with it. i mean i have basically a early to mids 90's ed rig. you cant get anymore ed like. i was told many times not to use the 5150's for my wet cabs, it was over kill but i can switch between the fuck and balance tones in one foot tap. they do make a huge difference. ed's setting on the eventide was called micro pitchshift. i use a axis so yes the pickup is gonna have an effect. i dont know what else to tell ya. i use -7/+7 for fuck and -9/+9 for balance and -12/+12 for 5150 and ou812. can you make any sound clips that i can hear and go from there.

  9. #9
    5150
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    p.s arent you in peoria or something. do i need to come over? lol you got beer?

  10. #10
    Top Of The World 5150 Frankenstrat's Avatar
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    02.20.13 @ 06:15 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by J_Alexander View Post
    p.s arent you in peoria or something. do i need to come over? lol you got beer?

    he lives in elgin lol, so do i

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by J_Alexander View Post
    p.s arent you in peoria or something. do i need to come over? lol you got beer?
    I'm in Elgin -- thats a drive from where you are. I was at my grandparents last month and went by Lexington though when we were going to Bloomington.... at the time, I couldn't remember why that city sounded familiar hehehe.

    Ok, so I got Ed's settings -- good. Apart from the little problems with the base tone, it is very, VERY close -- so I'll leave it for now.

    I bet I know what the problem is now though... I am using my 5150 combo speakers for the amp's dry signal, but I'm using 2 custom made 1 x 12" Peavey Scorpion speaker cabs for my wet cabs.

    I do have another 5150 combo (that I cut in half so now it is a head and a cab). Should I wire those speakers as stereo and use that as my wet cab?
    That way I would be a LOT closer to having 3 5150 cabs -- it would only be 2 dry, 2 wet speakers total, but they would all be Sheffields.

    Or does someone have a 5150 Combo that they would like me to cut in half for them and refinish the top as a head and return it, and then let me keep the bottom speaker cab so then I would have 3 identical 2 x 12" 5150 cabs?
    Do you think having 3 identical 2 x 12" 5150 cabs would sound basically the same as 3 4 x 12"s Jim?

  12. #12
    Good Enough SLEEPER5150's Avatar
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    12.03.10 @ 03:16 PM
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    I think you are right on the money as far as settings and pickup selection go. I will tell you that I have noticed quite a bit of inconsistency in Dimarzio pickups over the years. Aside from the EBMM ones, I've never been a real fan of them. I do buy them for their magnets ocassionaly. They are excellent. Ive bought a couple of the Tone Zone and Air Nortons and I gotta tell you they ALL sounded like different pickups. One of the Tone Zones (the first one I bought nailed the EVH Tone beautifully, as did the Air Norton, so I figured I'd pick up another set and put 'em in another guitar. First off the Air Nortons in the neck position differed little, but at first I thought it was just the guitar, but the new Tone Zone, had a real Midrangey, and overly distorted tone. I switched them into my main guitar, and same crappy sound. Rewired it thinking maybe the color coding was wrong, and it did'nt help. So in short, alot just simply has to do with that sweet PU/guitar combination. Ed's always had his main guitars, but he screws with them relentlessly to get them how he wants them to sound. The EBMM's were the closest I think Dimarzio has ever gotten to "the perfect pickup". At least for VH fans. The only other thing I'd sugest is to maybe move away from Groovetubes now, and go to JJ's. I honestly thought I'd damaged my 5150 head, it was so uncontrollable and inconsistent from venue to venue, day to day. My Marshall guy said try JJ's about 4 months ago, and I'm proud to say my 5150 is back sounding better than the day I bought it. Remember Groove Tubes are just another reseller, and I think their current suppliers don't have the quality they used too. JJ's resell as well, but they are from Chekeslovakia (spelling?) where there is still little environmental enforcement. Most manufactures of tubes have had to change their method of manufacture, as the process of making them is not generally good for the environment. In the early nineties, there was concern that the entire tube industry would be hammered into the ground, hence Marshall's introduction of their Valvestate amps, and Peavey's Transtube line. Alot of the digital modelling amps we have today are also the result of this fear in the tube amp industry. Fortunately for now at least, that fear has subsided.
    She looks so $#@!'n good ,so sexy and so frail....Somethin's got the bite on me, I'm goin' straight to Hell.

  13. #13
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    Thanks Sleeper.

    Actually, I was just waiting until I got a little more mileage on the Grove Tubes before I ordered the JJ 6L6s. The only problem I can see with them is that they will change the tone to being more warm and Marshally than the Balance tone was. The way they are described, they might actually round out the amp a little too much and take that amazing chimey tone from the amp that Ed had for Balance. Hopefully, the sound difference can be taken care of with some slight amp EQ'ing. I'm sure I'll end up getting them sometime soon....

  14. #14
    Good Enough SLEEPER5150's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrjstudios View Post
    Thanks Sleeper.

    Actually, I was just waiting until I got a little more mileage on the Grove Tubes before I ordered the JJ 6L6s. The only problem I can see with them is that they will change the tone to being more warm and Marshally than the Balance tone was. The way they are described, they might actually round out the amp a little too much and take that amazing chimey tone from the amp that Ed had for Balance. Hopefully, the sound difference can be taken care of with some slight amp EQ'ing. I'm sure I'll end up getting them sometime soon....
    I'm not sure. Maybe I'm just gettin' old, but the main difference I found was that there was substantially less of the cheapy tube hiss and microphonics. It still sounds warm if you want or like a wildcat crap'n razor blades if you want. I did'nt notice any real rounding over in the tone. I thought I had bad caps in the amp but the tubes just took the problem away. Wish I had switched brands long ago. Another place to check if you don't like JJ's, is to find an old mom & pop tv and radio repair shop. I bought my el34's and kt88's,6l6's, and 12ax7's for years at a fraction of the cost of music shops up until a year or so ago when the old man died.His son took over for a while but the business just tailed off and he closed. A lot of real cool original equipment stuff from Sylvania, GE, and Phillips are at those shops. Phillips tubes are by far my favorite preamp tube. You never know, you might get lucky.
    She looks so $#@!'n good ,so sexy and so frail....Somethin's got the bite on me, I'm goin' straight to Hell.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrjstudios View Post
    Thanks Sleeper.

    Actually, I was just waiting until I got a little more mileage on the Grove Tubes before I ordered the JJ 6L6s. The only problem I can see with them is that they will change the tone to being more warm and Marshally than the Balance tone was. The way they are described, they might actually round out the amp a little too much and take that amazing chimey tone from the amp that Ed had for Balance. Hopefully, the sound difference can be taken care of with some slight amp EQ'ing. I'm sure I'll end up getting them sometime soon....
    Ed used Sylvanias in his 5150's in that era. They were standard for a year or two in the 5150's.

 

 

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