We know that all overdrives are not the same. There are distortions, classic overdrives and fuzz is pretty much compressing and saturating a high gain distorted overdrive sounds. And with so many OD options already what is so important about having a Transparent Overdrive. Well, everything when it comes to tone.
Transparent Overdrives fall somewhere between distortion and clean boost pedals. Unlike harder OD pedals like distortions a great transparent overdrive will keep your tone clean and so very true. In fact, I would say it some of the truest guitar tone without just running straight into your amp.
In short, Transparent Overdrives should be "amp-like". They are a must and are sometimes an always on, set it and forget it kinda of pedal is because it puts the sound of your guitar and amp in the forefront. They are very touch-responsive, focused on less-color giving high headroom overdrive sounds.
Not sure which one to add to your board? Here are a few we think are fantastic available at Rogue Guitar Shop.
The Timmy pedal has always been known for it's ability to provide a transparent overdrive to your amplifier while retaining the amps original tone.
At low settings you will be able to effortlessly achieve a sound that is simply "more" of what your amp already offers. As the gain is turned up, and the pedal's EQ adjusted accordingly, smooth, singing, round and reedy tones are at your fingertips.
The Timmy pedal's responsiveness is exactly like that of a great, tube amplifier in that it responds immediately to your right hand's attack.
Plumes™ is a low to medium gain overdrive based on the trusty lime-green overdrive that has been an industry staple since its inception. This is the kind of overdrive that works in conjunction with a good valve amp to create the warm saturation people like to call “transparent”. While this circuit has been the foundation of countless other overdrives available today, we feel the Plumes has a few twists and turns to make it unique enough to stand out.
The Plumes does away with the trusted JRC4558 OpAmp and the BJT buffers and replaces them with low noise JFET OpAmps for a more robust and precise signal with a significantly lower noise floor. The 9v power input is internally converted to +/- 9v for more headroom and a clarity that is almost three-dimensional. We’ve raised the input impedance to a whopping 10 megaohms for a stronger signal with more clarity and chime. We’ve also adjusted the cutoff of the tone control to deliver a more useful range of travel with more booming bass on the low end without sacrificing the cutting midrange and bright top end.
Last, but certainly not least, the Plumes offers three different clipping options to ensure that it will work with a wide variety of gear and playing styles. Mode 1 is symmetrical clipping utilizing a pair of light emitting diodes. This is the crunchiest setting the Plumes has to offer. When played through a clean amp, it’ll deliver a reasonable facsimile of that classic crunchy valve amp tone. Mode 2 is clean boost mode. This eliminates the soft clipping diodes altogether and leaves you with straight OpAmp drive. This is perfect for pushing your clean tone out in front or driving the preamp of an already overdriven amp into tasteful breakup territory. Mode 3 is an asymmetrical silicon diode arrangement similar to the stock screamer but with more output and clean clarity; the tone some people describe as “transparent”.
The Pettyjohn CHIME MKII is a major update to our signature low-medium gain overdrive. Since it’s release nearly three years ago the CHIME has become our most popular pedal to-date and gained somewhat of a cult following. The CHIME has been loved for its ability to sweeten your signal with the touch sensitivity of vintage english amps on the edge of break up. The sweet saturation and harmonic excitement ends up being always-on for many players.
Let’s start by saying everything we love about the CHIME has been preserved. Our team listened to feedback from players and dealers alike and then sharpened our pencils and set out to improve one of our favorite pedals. Through much toil we believe we have taken this pedal to the next level both sonically and functionally.
Over the years the Morning Glory is undoubtedly our most known and praised overdrive pedal. It has won more awards and received more accolades than any other JHS pedal. It was created in 2009 out of a need for an overdrive pedal that simply took a guitar and amplifier’s tone to the next level without adding strong mid frequencies or any other characteristic that came along with the Tubescreamer style circuits on the market. Its goal was, and still is, to be incredibly easy to use and to be the most transparent overdrive out there. Even though the "transparent" buzzword is a bit overused all these years later, the meaning and application still stands as the best way to describe the magic that the Morning Glory brings to your rig. Let's take a look at what improvements the Morning Glory V4 has to offer.
Tumnus is a versatile addition to any setup, any style. Stack it with another pedal to help push or shape the total amount of gain, use it as a stand alone overdrive, or use it as a slightly dirty boost to push the front end of your amp over the edge. You can even use it as a buffer, because just like the original this pedal is not true bypass. Instead, faithful to the original, this pedal contains a buffered bypass tone legendary in its own right.
Three knobs and the truth: The Tumnus’ streamlined 3 control knobs (Volume, Gain, and Tone) allow you to quickly dial in your tones to matter what the gig calls for.
We sought extended dynamic range, brilliant overtones, long sustain, quick but fat tone, and of course, the most important thing, pure and clean overdrive sound. In order to realize all of these things, we thoroughly investigated various electronic circuits and parts and all of the factors related to sound such as materials and weight of the case and knobs, magnetic fields, etc. After a few years and many prototypes, we finally completed the STRING SLINGER and FIRE MIST.
In our quest for ideal overdrive sounds, we usually recall the American Blues sound symbolized by the classic Black Face period and the British Rock sound as represented by the golden “Plexi” panel.
The STRING SLINGER revives that ideal American Blues sound. Its viscous, clean-to-crunch tone with moderate compression feel can generate the best Blues sound.
For further info on our selection of Transparent Overdrive stock contact Michael at the shop or jump on chat and we will hook you up!