Author Topic: next diy project ideas: what do I drive after my diy tube screamer?  (Read 384 times)

xdfo

Hey all,
I'm new here and generally pretty new to DIY pedals.  I just caught the diy bug and have assembled some eurorack synth modules and got the idea to make pedals that are more suitable for my synthesizers than what might be normally available on the market.

Right now I have a tube screamer built with some custom diodes.  The literature indicates tube screamers were meant to drive tube preamps/amps.  Is there a fun diy project for something like a tube/valve pedal?

Cheers,

GibsonGM

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Re: next diy project ideas: what do I drive after my diy tube screamer?
« Reply #1 on: December 31, 2020, 12:23:32 PM »
Hi Xdfo, welcome to the forum!  Yes, there certainly are some tube pedals.  Look up "Mitsumin Valvecaster' for a pretty easy one based around a 12AU7 and 12V operation.

For something a little more advanced and VERY much a useful preamp for a studio or what have you, you may want to look at the "GTFO" thread on here.  A little more advanced of a project, but one I found WELL worth the time and need to plan out how you're going to house it and so on.   There is also a PCB for it available, I think, to make things easier (I built my point to point in a larger enclosure).

Have a look around!   Yes, the TS will do its best work driving a tube amp or pedal  :)  I can't say how that would affect your synth playing, but with a guitar you can get some GREAT sounds that way.
MXR Dist +, TS9/808, Easyvibe, Big Muff Pi, Blues Breaker, Guv'nor.  MOSFace, MOS Boost,  BJT boosts - LPB-2, buffers, Phuncgnosis, FF, Orange Sunshine & others, Bazz Fuss, Tonemender, Little Gem, Orange Squeezer, Ruby Tuby, filters, octaves, trems...

Marcos - Munky

Re: next diy project ideas: what do I drive after my diy tube screamer?
« Reply #2 on: December 31, 2020, 01:25:27 PM »
First of all, welcome Xdfo.

I also suggest you to build a Valvecaster. Very simple and safe build with a tube. In fact, some time ago I came across this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FHOXIhWkpss. You can see his build is modified with some added circuit, but if you build the regular Valvecaster and drive it with your TS you'll get very similar sounds, with the extra option to have the Valvecaster only without any drive circuit driving it. Just be sure to use a 12AU7 tube, a 12AX7 will work but with a poor result.

Btw, even it's name, the TS can drive solid state circuits pretty well, and also can be driven by other circuits pretty well. So be sure to try the TS driving the Valvecaster (if you decide to build it) and the other way around, and check which one you like best. I have in my pedalboard a booster, followed by Mad Professor Sweet Honey (which is a TS variant), followed by a Zen Drive (another TS variant), followed by a mid gain overdrive and followed by a hi gain overdrive. This way, I can have a TS variant driven by a booster, or a TS variant to drive another TS variant (my main distortion tone for now), or a TS variant driving a mid/hi gain overdrive. Too much options, I know :icon_lol:

xdfo

Re: next diy project ideas: what do I drive after my diy tube screamer?
« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2020, 02:16:03 PM »
First of all, welcome Xdfo.

I also suggest you to build a Valvecaster. Very simple and safe build with a tube. In fact, some time ago I came across this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FHOXIhWkpss. You can see his build is modified with some added circuit, but if you build the regular Valvecaster and drive it with your TS you'll get very similar sounds, with the extra option to have the Valvecaster only without any drive circuit driving it. Just be sure to use a 12AU7 tube, a 12AX7 will work but with a poor result.

Btw, even it's name, the TS can drive solid state circuits pretty well, and also can be driven by other circuits pretty well. So be sure to try the TS driving the Valvecaster (if you decide to build it) and the other way around, and check which one you like best. I have in my pedalboard a booster, followed by Mad Professor Sweet Honey (which is a TS variant), followed by a Zen Drive (another TS variant), followed by a mid gain overdrive and followed by a hi gain overdrive. This way, I can have a TS variant driven by a booster, or a TS variant to drive another TS variant (my main distortion tone for now), or a TS variant driving a mid/hi gain overdrive. Too much options, I know :icon_lol:
Hi Xdfo, welcome to the forum!  Yes, there certainly are some tube pedals.  Look up "Mitsumin Valvecaster' for a pretty easy one based around a 12AU7 and 12V operation.

For something a little more advanced and VERY much a useful preamp for a studio or what have you, you may want to look at the "GTFO" thread on here.  A little more advanced of a project, but one I found WELL worth the time and need to plan out how you're going to house it and so on.   There is also a PCB for it available, I think, to make things easier (I built my point to point in a larger enclosure).

Have a look around!   Yes, the TS will do its best work driving a tube amp or pedal  :)  I can't say how that would affect your synth playing, but with a guitar you can get some GREAT sounds that way.

Awesome, I'll start digging, happy new year!