Tag: distortion

SMD Products Now At Sonic!

They say you should be careful what you wish for but in this case you can stay care-free. You can now sleep soundly because Sonic Electronix now carries an assortment of products  from the legendary Steve Meade. If SMD products were potential life-long companions, then you would want to make sure to treat them to a nice lobster dinner and make sure to call them back after the first date.  What i’m getting at here is that they are very good quality products and have been proven to be one of the best among professional and amateur installers alike. We are very excited to be getting these in and I might even pick up one up myself!

SMD DD-1

SMD DD-1

SMD DD-1

The workhorse of the SMD line is the popular SMD DD-1.  This unit is a distortion detector and analyzer which is used to set gain and eliminate distortion by matching the source units output level.  This is a must have tool for any sound system due to the fact that any system can experience clipping.  It includes easy-to-read LED indicators that will tell you if your system is experiencing a distorted signal and will tell which way to adjust your gain to eliminate clipping.  The DD-1 is powered by a 9V battery in order to isolate it from the vehicles electrical system.  This guarantees that you will only be measuring the audio signal and not the noise in the vehicle’s charging system.   In addition to all these great features, a test tone CD is included for accurate calibration.  There is also a high voltage version called the SMD DD-1 HV.

SMD CC-1

SMD CC-1

SMD CC-1

Another essential tool is the Crossover Calibrator called the SMD CC-1.  This calibrator tool will allow you to seamlessly set electronic crossovers on your amplifiers to their desired frequencies.  It features a “competition mode” which can be used to match frequencies and gains of any 4 channel amplifier or multiple monoblock amplifiers.  When it comes to applications such as these, it is very important to make sure the amplifiers are putting out the exact same amount of power especially when you have two or more amplifiers on a dual voice coil driver.  The unit also includes an RCA harness so you can measure the output voltage of your headunit directly.

You can take it one step further by adding an LED sound system output display called the VU-DIN.  This display will give you a real time indicator of your music and will specify how close you are to clipping your signal.  Comment below and tell us what you think of SMD!

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Favorite Boss Effects Pedals

Few other musical instruments have the allure and mystique of the electric guitar. Since its electrification and early use in the late 40’s by innovators like T-Bone Walker and Les Paul, the electric guitar, with its broad range of tonal and stylistic possibilities, has defined the careers of hundreds of musicians and the distinct sound of generations. For modern guitarists, the legendary sounds of the past are made available at the stomp of a box. Among my personal favorite Boss effects pedals are the Boss 63 Fender Reverb, the Blues Driver, and the RC-3 Loop Station. Whether used in combination, individually, or with other effects pedals, these three are sure to allow your creativity to explore new territories.

’63 Fender Reverb

My foremost favorite of these pedals is the ’63 Fender Reverbwhich accurately and convincingly captures the legendary tone of a vintage Fender spring reverb amp. Whether you are trying to go for a vintage country twang, classic surf-style riffs, or a warm and nuanced tone, the ’63 Fender Reverb offers an authentically reproduced tube amp sound.

Classic Fender Tube Amp Reverb

For those daring to push the boundaries, the ’63 Fender Reverb is open to experimentation and works well with other pedals for a completely personalized sound. My favorite way to use this pedal is by adding a little overdrive, rolling the tone about 75% and then kicking the Mixer and Dwell settings back to less than 50%. With your guitar at its neck pickup with the volume all the way up, this setting gives the guitar a bright and ringing character with a plenty of bite and attitude. Overall, this pedal delivers a great blend of vintage tones with the versatility to be used with other effects and styles for broad experimentation. For a pedal offering overdrive with the a similar tube amp sound signature, the solution may be none other than the famous Boss Blues Driver

A Boss Classic: The Blues Driver

You don’t have to have the blues to enjoy the range and tube-like overdrive of this reliable and tested pedal.  While the Blues Driverwill certainly deliver the traditional blues tones reminiscent of players like Stevie Ray Vaughn, Muddy Waters, and Buddy Guy, this effects pedal can also deliver rich and refined warm tones. Perhaps most notably, the Blues Driver can deliver a tone that is full of mellow warmth with enough gain to remain punchy and full of attitude. Like the ’63 Fender Reverb, the Blues Driver is versatile enough for experimentation and will fit well with just about any genre or musical vision. My personal favorite way to use this pedal is in trying to emulate the mellow and over-driven style of B.B. King that can go from sounding clean to biting in seconds.

RC-3 Loop Station

Lastly, the RC-3 Loop Station offers perhaps the most versatility and the best use as a device for experimentation. With 99 separate on-board memory banks, the Loop Station has enough capacity to store tons of riffs and jam tracks. Moreover, the Loop Station affords users up to 3 hours of recording time for even the most intense and epic jam or recording sessions. Aside from its immense capacity, the Loop Station can be used to layer different recorded tracks allowing you to build harmonically rich tracks. While I use the RC-3 for practice and for layer tracks as mentioned earlier, the RC-3 can be used for just about any musical idea you may have. Plenty of artists use the RC-3 to create thick and complex atmospheres using various other effects.

Whatever Gets You Through the Night

Each of these pedals offer you a little piece of music history and allows you to mix and combine them into something totally new and personal: the ’63 Fender Reverb can take you back to the early days of rock-n-roll, or drive you to new and hypnotic sounds; the Blues Drivers will let you tap into raw energy or smooth things out, while the Loop Station can take you just about anywhere. Whatever your musical tastes or ideals, these stomp boxes can do it all.

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