I'm into boutique pedals, and I'm curious to read about your faves and experiences. I run a pretty efficient board using my 1976 Ash Strat and running into my Fender Bassman '59 reissue. I ended up getting some boutique stuff because I got tired of losing the bottom end of my tone with regular over-the-counter pedals. Here's my boutique stuff:
Real McCoy RMC-01 Wah pedal
ZVex Box of Rock
BOSS Blues Driver Keeley Mod
The tone is unbelievable. The last addition was my Box of Rock, as I needed a real good distortion. They apparently wanted to create an analog pedal that would capture the sound of a fully cranked old Marshall JTM, and by golly, they succeeded! This pedal just sings...
The Wah Probe is a wah pedal that uses a theremin-type of control rather than a rocker pedal. I was breaking a wah every couple of years, and this has proved to be a good solution for me. It creates a field that operates the wah when it is disturbed by your foot, a cat, or anything else.
The Tremorama is a tremolo pedal much like the Ooh Wah. Both are sequencer-based effects where you can set a static value and then choose how many steps in the sequence are executed (4, 6, 8) and the rate that you step through them. You'll want to watch the video on those to see them in action - cool for weird textures.
The Nano Head is a tube amp head in a Phase 90-sized box. I use it with the 'youth band' to drive a 4x12 cabinet, and can keep up with the drummer. : ) Not bone-crushing loud, but loud enough.
I have a photo-sensitive device (like a light-controlled version of the tremolo probe) and have found both of those to be the least useful.
For me, the Wah Probe made the most sense due to my general (unintentional) destructive tendencies with most mere mortal wahs.
I have had the opportunity to play all three, the Fuzz Probe was the weirdest. They took the most volatile control from the fuzz factory and hooked the theremin controller up to that. It took a little while to get more than static and noise from it, but it was cool. The folks that I was playing with at the time wouldn't have put up with that much dissonance so I played it safe and stuck with the wah...
Yeah, I think that my lack of time spent w/the Fuzz Factory didn't make my time trying out the Fuzz probe really productive. I actually liked some of the crazy noises that I could get out of it, but the group I was playing with at the time wouldn't have stood for that.
My favorite is The Machine, but haven't come across one for a good deal yet...
I've actually used the Tremorama during service before - nothing crazy, though. In hindsight, I don't use the random feature (b/c it just sounds like a cable is going bad). I could have gotten away with the Seek Trem.
I use it to create a fairly normal tremolo on my non-trem amps. I have a couple pretty reliable amps, but my first major all-tube amp was a 70's Fender Twin with tremolo - and at that time I had to get the most out of what I had so I used that effect quite a bit.
I like how you can use the '6' setting to get a tremolo for a tune that is in 3/4 or 6/8. Again, not something I use each week but good to have around. : )
I see what you mean - I think we've hit the threshold of replies.
I don't use the Tremorama on the Twin, tube amp tremolo is just so cool I wouldn't do that. It does help on my non-trem amps, though. Most of the time I use it for more of a funky texture than trying to imitate amp tremolo.
Absolutely! Not really loud, of course. Last time I used it I almost got to 3. Typically I have it leaning back on the amp legs and pointed at my head to prevent the volume level from getting out of control.
It can be done at a reasonable volume. Normally I get my overdrive from pedals, so just getting a reasonable clean tone is all I'm going for.
Last week it wasn't the Twin, but a 70's bassman 100 head. Again, at a lower volume (like 3 or so) through a 4x10 pointed at me (not the congregation). We have a little bit of room onstage so I can avoid the other musicians (so they aren't caught in any crazy vortex of weirdness unless they prefer it - like the bassist).
I'll either use a strat or a Godin, but with the Twin I prefer the strat. : ) (The red one in the picture, actually.)
So I person that I trust recommended a Danelectro Cool Cat Transparent Overdrive, as a place holder for the Timmy, because no matter how much I may want one, I just can't justify $300 or more for a single pedal. The Dan Electro was only $40 and it has true bypass, so I thought, why not? We plugged it into a guitar rig that features the Tim, and began to tweak. Once we were done, we couldn't believe our ears: they had the exact same tone, sound, quality...everything! A $40 pedal that performs like a $400 one (and we're "tone snobs") Seriously, we turned one off at the same time as we were turning the other on, and there was NO difference.
So here's the deal: Danelectro ripped Paul Cochrane off. The insides of the Cool Cat are the exact same as the Tim/Timmy. Apparently, apologies have been made and the new versions of this pedal will be changed. Still, it frustrating to think that you got a great deal, only to find out that it was corrupt. I guess I'll let it stay in the chain until I can afford a real Tim/Timmy.