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markstuk

Cheap valve drive

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Bought on of these on a whim - https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Nobsound-Valve-Tube-Guitar-Drive-Pedal-Bass-Overdrive-Gain-Tone-Stomp-Effector/253632915871 - astonishingly good for the money..... 

I've got a number of 12AX7 type valves hanging around, going to have some fun.. Also works on both AC and DC power supplies though does draw a fair amount of current... 

 

 

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Congratulations for getting Nobsound through the profanity filter xD

But seriously, please report back your thoughts as it looks an interesting pedal for the money. 

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Pop over and have a play if you like... I have a decent pedal board and this sounds much nicer than my COG TK421.. 🙂  I'm on the south warks/north oxon border

 

 

 

Edited by markstuk

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QUick update, been playing around with some Mullard and Brymon 12AT's and 12AX's but on the whole I think I prefer the tube it came with... 

 

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14 hours ago, markstuk said:

Pop over and have a play if you like... I have a decent pedal board and this sounds much nicer than my COG TK421.. 🙂  I'm on the south warks/north oxon border

 

Thanks for the offer, I may just take you up on it as and when I get a chance :hi:

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13 hours ago, markstuk said:

QUick update, been playing around with some Mullard and Brymon 12AT's and 12AX's but on the whole I think I prefer the tube it came with... 

 

Would be great to hear some sound clips!

Is this similar to the EHX English Muffin?

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I keep looking at these on eBay but then thinking they can't be any good at that price. 

Might have to grab one now based on this though 😁

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I'm a little disappointed that it doesn't have Nobsound across the front in big letters.  I'll have to be contented with giggling at the Sola Sound BUM Fuzz Unit instead...

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Bugger! Had this in my watch list and was going to put in a last minute bid with a sniping app but completely forgot to set it! 

Screenshot_20180923-070457.jpg

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Well, I've been on an overdrive quest lately and... it happened. I bought one of these.

The instructions it came with are hilarious. I'll see if I can scan them or at least take a picture. I did not understand a great deal of it, and the function of the switch on the side is a mystery to me, as are the meanings of the red and the blue leds.

I've tried it only at home, at moderate volume, using one of the power outputs from the Voodoo Labs Pedal Power 2 +, the one at 9V and up to 250mA. The instructions indicate it can take up to 18V but use more than 500mA. However, it did work (at least partially) and I liked what I heard. 

Why partially? Well, with the side switch OFF, the footswitch alternates between muting the pedal or producing a clean sound (with the red led shining). I don't know if giving it more juice would change the behaviour, or if this is only useful while using certain valves (the instructions are unclear to me). 

With the switch ON, however... the footswitch alternates between bypass, or overdrive (with the blue led shining). The drive knob allows you to go from clean, to pretty distorted, and everything in between. It's a very pleasant distortion, with body, meaty, and a lot going on on the higher registers if you want it. The tone control  does what you expect nicely, but what's even nicer is how it responds to the tone control on the bass: roll off treble and use low gain for a thick well define sound, and add treble to increase the amount of 'grit'. 

I quite like it, I have to say! For less than £40, it's a pretty cool overdrive that sounds a lot better than the vast majority in that range. 

It doesn't appear to suffer from low end loss, but I cannot tell 100% until I have played it at higher volumes. It's very promising, 'though.

I decided to use it with a 9V battery, using a little adaptor cable, and see what happens. To my surprise, it worked. I was under the impression that a lowly battery could not power this, but it does. However, there was a distinct difference in the sound (slightly lower volume, I think that less bassy too, and more distorted), and I *think* the sound deteriorated a little in the couple of minutes or so I tried it like this. It makes me wonder how it'll work using the more common 100-120mA outputs on most power packs, and whether using a separate power supply that produces 500mA or more, as recommended, would give better results than my test with the 250mA output.

Does the valve do anything? I think there is a red led at the base of the valve to aid the visual effect, but the filamen(ts appear to glow a little. 

Regardless... it sounds good, especially for low-mid gain overdriven sounds, but even cranking the drive to the max still sounds good and doesn't get overly fizzy like many other pedals out there.

That switch is a mystery to me and I'll have to investigate further trying to decypher the instructions. They say something like it is to choose between 6N2 or 6N4 valves or valve modes... I have no idea what this means. As it is, it only seems to work in one mode... but it's a good one. The pedal is only slightly larger than a boss pedal and the knobs are hard to read (black on black with a small silver mark)... but that's not much of a problem.

So the first impressions are pretty good, for this Little Bear G3. Nobsound. Ha! :D  

 

EDIT: Oh, and it works as it should. The switch is a bit like the 'standby' on valve amps. It turns the valve on, and keeps it on, while the foot switch just turns the effect on/off. The valve takes a couple of seconds to start working if you plug it in with the switch in the on position. Not sure it needs this switch but, that's what it does.

Edited by mcnach
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I'm liking what this little pedal does.

I found this video that explains a bit more what's inside, as well as showing the internal switch if swapping to 12AX7 type valves...

 

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On 19/09/2018 at 19:41, markstuk said:

Bought on of these on a whim - https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Nobsound-Valve-Tube-Guitar-Drive-Pedal-Bass-Overdrive-Gain-Tone-Stomp-Effector/253632915871 - astonishingly good for the money..... 

I've got a number of 12AX7 type valves hanging around, going to have some fun.. Also works on both AC and DC power supplies though does draw a fair amount of current... 

 

 

 

Have you experimented with other valves?

I quite like it as it is, but of course I'm curious. If you try 12AX7 type valves remember to change the switch by the base of the valve accordingly (they seem to come with a different type valve, fits in the same base but different pin layout which the switch adjusts for... I only realised that by watching a video)

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1 hour ago, The59Sound said:

Anyone?!

 

I've only just got a little Focusrite USB interface precisely so that I can record stuff... I can't promise when... but I'll get something done as soon as I get my recording up and running.

I'm interested myself because one thing is to try it with different voltages etc, but it involves gaps and remembering... if I record the clips then I can compare them more easily switching back and forth... so it'll happen

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I decided the black knobs on black background were not easy to see... so I put a set of yellow chicken-head style ones. Not to everybody's taste, I am sure, but they do the job beautifully. Here's what it looks like, and also next to other pedals to give a better idea of its sise: it's larger than the usual suspects, but not by much:

20181005_200421.jpg?dl=1

20181005_200257.jpg?dl=1

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I tried the G3 using a 100mA output from my power supply: it does not work. The 250mA is sufficient, but the 100mA is useless.

I then tried it with a separate supply capable of 700mA. I am not sure I hear a difference between that and the 250mA. I *think* it may be slightly louder... but it was hard to tell at 'home' volumes. Which means that 250-300mA is probably what the pedal requires for normal operation. The funny instructions that came with it suggested 350mA, and as usual you can go lower... but not much.

If you plan to get one, bear in mind you'll need to have an appropriate supply for it.

I have not tried it using AC or anything other than 9V (it's supposed to be happy up to 12V)

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