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Thread: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

  1. #1
    Lewguitar
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    Default Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Someone asked me about this. Here's how I use the DS-1.

    1) First off, think of the Boss DS-1 as a guitar signal enhancer...not as an overdrive pedal that gets stomped into action when you want some distortion.
    Leave the DS-1 "ON" all the time.

    2) If you're using a distortion pedal, like a Big Muff, plug the Big Muff into the DS-1...you'll be surprised at how much smoother and less like a ZIPPER the DS-1 will make your Fuzz or Distortion pedal sound.

    3) Start by setting the controls on the DS-1 to about 1/2 way and then adjust the volume and tone controls on your amp until you get a great soloing tone...tweak the controls on the DS-1 too, but keep them around the 1/2 way point.

    4) Turn your guitar's volume control down to about 5 and then adjust the DS-1 and your amp's volume and tone until you get a great tone for rock n roll rythym.

    5) Now just tweak the amp and the DS-1 until you fine tune a tone that allows you to leave the DS-1 ON all of the time and go from cleanish rock tone to an overdriven rock tone by simply raising or lowering the volume control on your guitar itself. Just find some settings that work well together.


    That's about it.

    I can plug my '54 Tele into my DS-1 and that into my vintage Fender amps, and once I get the amp and DS-1 adjusted properly, I can get a great Jimmy Page Led Zepplin I tone without ever having to turn the pedal off.
    Last edited by Lewguitar; 11-16-2004 at 07:39 AM.

  2. #2
    Lewguitar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Joe Satriani and Steve Vai both use DS-1's on alot of their recordings. When I saw Joe and Steve with G3 years ago, they rarely appeared to turn the DS-1 off...it seemed to be left on most/all of the time.

    Again, the key, IMO, is to stop thinking of the DS-1 as an overdrive or distortion pedal. It's more like a Guitar Signal Enhancer/Pickup Booster.
    Last edited by Lewguitar; 11-16-2004 at 07:42 AM.

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    Mojo's Minions Imp's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    this would probably work for most level boosting pedals as well, wouldn't it?

    still, it's a good guide, thanks man

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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Nice! Thanks Lew!

  5. #5
    Lewguitar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Thanks! My buddy AJ and I were talking about the DS-1 yesterday on our hike and how we think of the DS-1 is as a Guitar Signal Enhancer that allows us to get both a great Rock Rythym tone, as well as a great Rock Soloing tone.

    AJ actually plays alot of SALSA gigs! He loves SALSA and plays with alot of the SALSA bands in the area. He uses the DS-1 for a great rythym tone, and then cranks up the volume on his guitar itself to get a cool Santana-ish tone for soloing.

    He plays a Jimmie Vaughn Strat I modded with a pair of Duncan SSL-1 pickups and a Fralin Steel Pole 43 bridge pickup. He plays through a Sovtek Mig-50 I modded for him and which Bruce (http://www.missionamps.com) tweaked a little further, to make it alot more like Marshall Model 1987 small box 50 watt head, through a Silvertone Twin Twelve cab with either a pair of late 50's blueframe Jensen C12Q's or a differant Silvertone Twin Twelve bottem with a Weber C12N and Vintage 30 mix.

    Get's a great tone.

    Lew
    Last edited by Lewguitar; 11-16-2004 at 07:51 AM.

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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Funny because this is kind of how I use my DS-1 too, except I have it set so my low-output pickups (neck possition) get my rhythm tone and my hotter pups get my rock lead or just higher-distortion sound...then I turn it off for cleans.
    green globe burned black by sunn

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    Slutbucker Pimpologist ArtieToo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Lew; Have you ever tried the Duncan SFX-01 Pup Booster?

    I'm just wondering how it compares, and if it could also be utilized this way.

    Thanks; Artie

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    Mojo's Minions Imp's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    tube screamer would work in a similar way too, i'm guessing

  9. #9
    Lewguitar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Quote Originally Posted by Imp
    tube screamer would work in a similar way too, i'm guessing
    NO! The TS-9 will not clean up to a clean rock rythym tone when you lower the volume of the guitar itself. That is the magic of the DS-1. Lew

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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Right, the TS tends to stay dirty. I love my TS-9 though, I use it similar to how Lew uses the DS-1. I'm an addict now!!!!!
    Last edited by Jeff5; 11-17-2004 at 08:51 AM.

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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    cool lew. ive done the same thing with a sd1 and had great results, i try not to use pedals much for live playing but sometimes you just cant crank the amp to get the goods so i run the pedal on probably 90% of the time in those situation.

  12. #12
    Lewguitar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy
    cool lew. ive done the same thing with a sd1 and had great results, i try not to use pedals much for live playing but sometimes you just cant crank the amp to get the goods so i run the pedal on probably 90% of the time in those situation.
    Thanks Jeremy. What I think the DS-1 does is let a guy a great rock tone for both rythym and lead. Most pedals only give more distortion...but the DS-1 actually improves the tone for clean to semi-clean rock rythym. That's why if I use one, I tend to just leave it on all the time.

    But truthfully, my amps are all tweaked to match my touch perfectly and so I don't really need any pedals. Like you, I tend to use them very sparingly!

    But if I was doing a gig with a borrowed blackface Fender amp or something unmodified, I'd bring my DS-1 to the gig.

    Lew

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker NecroPolo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Thanks for the tip, Lew

    It's strange that you see this little orange stomper used in a way producing a cool tone, then someone comes the other day with a totally different idea, tone but an another great tone. That makes this little pedal my favourite. I use it as a solo booster/enhancer plugged in an already dirty channel, with the DS1 distortion at zero, tone at 10o'clock and volume at max. This way, a well-set noise gate is handy.

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Closed Eye's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    My DS-1 must be broken.

    It cleans up when I turn it down, but the tone is too shrill. I've heard from certain sources that the DS-1 doesn't interact well with some solidstate amps, is this true?

  15. #15
    Lewguitar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    I wouldn't know...I've never owned a solid state guitar amp. Sorry! Lew

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    25's Nemesis Benjy_26's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Quote Originally Posted by Lewguitar
    NO! The TS-9 will not clean up to a clean rock rythym tone when you lower the volume of the guitar itself. That is the magic of the DS-1. Lew

    Try the Vox Valvetone. I use it the exact same way with my BF Bassman.
    Ain't nothin' but a G thang, baby.

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    LoveMachineologist jeremy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    cool pedal that vox. in general i find most pedals sound a little thinner thru a ss amp, but then there is stuff like the metal zone which i dont think sounds great thru a tube amp, live any way

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    Gear Ho Gearjoneser's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Lew, is yours an older one modded by Spina, and can you get the same result out of a new off the shelf one for $39? It sounds like a pedal that would work great with a strat and my Chieftain, since the Chieftain is basically a RCA Bassman preamp into a tube rectified plexi power section w/reverb.
    Quote Originally Posted by Boogie Bill View Post
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  19. #19
    Fuzzy. Guitars the guy who invented fire's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    GJ...I tried this with mine...a new $39.00 special and It worked...I'm still gonna sent mine to John for the magic touch, but there you go!

    BTW...thanks Lew!
    If you just read a post by The Guy Who Invented Fire please understand that opinions change, mind sets change and as players our ears mature...not to mention our needs grow and change. With that in mind, today I may or may not agree with the post you just read!

  20. #20
    Lewguitar
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    Default Re: Lew's Guide: How to use a Boss DS-1

    Your welcome! I learned about the DS-1 fairly recently after seeing Satriani and Vai together several years ago. That's what got me interested in trying one. So I borrowed my friend AJ's newish Made in Taiwan DS-1 that he wasn't using at all...in fact, he said I could just have it!

    I played with it for a while and then asked him to stop by and check out the sound I was getting. When I was done demonstrating it, AJ wanted it back!

    So I went out and found an old Made in Japan DS-1 for myself. It's un-modded and staying that way.

    John did send me one of his modded DS-1's to try. I kept it for a few weeks.

    I loved the beefier distorted tones, but since it was boosted, I didn't feel it cleaned up quite as nicely as my unmodified version.

    Again, getting a great rock rythym tone by turning the guitar's volume control down to "5" and then being able to go to a soaring Led Zeppelin style overdrive when I turn the guitar's volume back up again is what I love about the DS-1.

    I can get most of the cleanish and overdriven tones off of the first couple of Led Zep albums just by plugging my '54 Tele into the DS-1 and that into any of my vintage Fender amps.

    I don't tend to use it with humbuckers like Vai and Satriani do. But I don't play my humbucker guitars much anyway.

    Lew

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