Recording FAQ

About Sound Samples:

All samples are recorded in our studio by Os, without any additional effects or any kinds of studio magic; except some Submarine samples were kindly contributed by Jon Pickles. All samples were normalized to -4dB. Please keep in mind recordings on that website are for DEMONSTRATION PURPOSES only. Our pedals may or may not sound exactly like samples with your particular rig. Even the string choice or where you pluck your instrument effects the overall sound coming through the amp or PA. They are intended as references, nothing else.

The samples featured in our previous website was recorded without using an amp, preamp or speakers. They were considered rather HI-FI and represented the “exact” sound of that particular pedal. Our customers commented on ElectroniX pedals sounded way better than they did in the samples through their setup, which makes sense. Since we eliminated tone coloring factors other than the pedal itself, the previous samples sounded like a little sterile to most. Almost every musician we asked preferred them to be recorded in “real life” conditions for better visualization; such as using an amp, cabinet and microphone. The samples in this website were recorded using more conventional methods.

Guitar Recording Setup:

In order to enhance perception and avoid confusion; we opted to record all samples with a single guitar, which is Washburn USA custom shop Maverick based on WM-4. It is a 24.75 scale set-neck instrument with mahogany body and rosewood fingerboard on mahogany neck. The bridge pickup is Seymour Duncan Distortion and the neck pickup is Seymour Duncan ‘59. It was strung with Ernie Ball coated 9s, which were half dead at the time of the recording. It was tuned to standard A=440.

The amp we used is a custom built amp, it doesn’t even have a head cabinet, only aluminum chassis. The dirty channel is more or less based on Plexi with a little more gain, which is almost equally bright as the original with less bass response. The clean channel is based on Blues Jr. with less gain and less booming bass response (modified tone stack, closer to Marshall really). Most samples were recorded using the clean channel, listen to the dry sample clip for reference. One exception is the AmpleDrive. We used it as a guitar preamp and plugged it to a solid state low wattage power amp, then to guitar cabinet. The power amp is a 30 watt stereo in push-pull configuration. The speaker cabinet is a 4×12 closed back custom cabinet, wired as 2×12 stereo equipped with Celestion greenbacks. It is a fairly dark sounding cabinet (not warm at all, but dark). Slight but different amounts of reverb was applied to both top and bottom pairs; it was recorded stereo. Power amp wasn’t pushed to distortion in any sample, but slight power amp compression was audible (meaning the amp wasn’t cranked). Tone controls were set to center positions (12 o’clock) for all samples, but this really doesn’t tell anything.

Bass Recording Setup:

Since the bass world is divided into two main fronts by Leo Fender, we chose include both of them in our samples. If nothing else is specified, those particular samples were recorded using the Jazz Bass; which is actually a stock Fender Jaguar in passive mode. Note that the bridge pickup is in the 70s position, so it has a little bit more bite and growl than a regular Jazz Bass. The P bass is a passive Kramer equipped with Dimarzio Model P. Jackson Japan MJ5 is referred to as active 5 string bass in the samples. The MM pickup is Seymour Duncan and the neck pickup is custom stack jazz. EMG BQS was running at 18V while recording samples. All basses were strung with SIT Powerwound medium gauge strings and I pluck them between pickups anchoring the neck pickup; like most of us do.

Submarine and Submarine Designer were recorded directly to tape (in our case, to the DAW) with analog Yamaha 16/4 mixer. All other samples were recorded via Trace Elliot GP7SM DI output, which is a fairly transparent solid state preamp. EQ was bypassed as well as the famous pre-shape buttons. Hopefully you wouldn’t do this and would adjust your preamp to your taste while using my pedals. In other words, the bass samples are pretty raw.

All bass samples uses the same supporting tune, which is the intro of the Police – Roxanne. I changed the bass line so that it would clearly demonstrate the pedal in question. The bass is very dominant in the mix as well. We used the supporting instruments, because it was requested by many. The idea is to show how the pedal would perform in a band mix, which is essential for working professional bassists and a good identifier if a particular pedal would work for you. Obviously fuzz and Roxanne do not go well together, but I am hoping you will get the point.

A word on perceived loudness and normalization: As mentioned before, all samples were normalized to -4dB. Normalization doesn’t mean limiting or compression; it does not change the loudness nor alters the dynamics in any way. It just boosts the volume until the biggest spike in the wave form reaches -4 dB. So… If a particular recording has an unusually large spike for a millisecond, the overall volume might be quieter than the average. That is especially true for fuzz pedals. One other point is that we need more wattage to hear bass frequencies, so a sample with boosted bass may seem to be quieter. In reality it is not, we just hear it that way.

Final thoughts: Do yourself a favor and listen to the samples with good speakers, preferably a stereo setup with a powered sub-woofer. A laptop speaker is not capable of producing decent sound, especially for bass samples. A guitar amp is special kind of amplification system with highly manipulated frequency response, be that solid state or tube. I used some original, but generic snippets for guitar samples as well as some rather known ones. Do not just go by the samples, read the descriptions as well. In my opinion, the descriptions are equally important as the sound samples. As always, please do ask if you have further questions.

Further comments and some clarifications can be found here.