RMA TOURBOX : First Review On Page 4



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Re: RMA tourbox

Postby calfzilla » Mon Apr 30, 2018 7:51 am

this ought to be good :evil:
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Re: RMA tourbox

Postby ibarakishi » Mon Apr 30, 2018 8:42 am

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Had a bit more time than i thought i would today, so i typed this out quick.

As I mentioned before, my recording equipment is still in boxes from my move to a new place, so here is my written review/critique of all the effects included in the RMA TOURBOX. I will try to keep this somewhat concise, as I personally don’t like reading ridiculously long reviews about stuff like this. Here are my thoughts, honest and straight, from which I based from me testing all the devices with my squire bullet strat equipped with lace pickups going into an Ibanez TSA30 combo amp :

RMA TETANUS BOOSTER:

- This is 10/10 very sensitive to playing, which I enjoyed greatly. This includes playing dynamic as well as adjustments with the volume knob on my guitar. This is something that is absolutely critical to the type of music I play and record, so I am always looking for this in any type of drive, fuzz, or distortion pedal i buy.

- Worked incredibly well with my lace pickups. I only tested it briefly with my piezo mic on my phin (haven't permanently attached it yet), but it seemed to be amazing with that as well. I bought one of these TB from Curtis and he included an extra one in the tourbox for me, and I am really excited to use it on recordings with my phin just as much as my guitar

-Goes from crushing distortion (think burning buildings, or anything on fire really) to brilliant saturated cleans. Added switches i suggested work amazing for premium destruction and scorching. It is most likely going to be an ‘always on’ pedal for me and I might need to get another one in the future so that I can have two in tandem

-My favorite light saturation setting was to start by having my guitar knob at 10, dialing in the TB until it had entered saturation, and then pulling back the volume knob to about 9 so that it just slipped out of it back into clean again. Makes it incredibly sensitive to how hard you are playing and really plays great. Again, worth stating that every and any slight movement of your volume knob or the settings in general really effects the overall sound. I like this about it.

-One thing that I love about this pedal is how it blooms when chained with other pedals. I played around with it having a Infanem Driving Notion before it and it was wonderful. Even without something driving it, I like how the TB blooms in both the low and high end, but with the low, it never gets muddy. This is incredibly hard for me to find in pedals, and is the reason I don’t own a lot honestly. I am really particular about this, and was so excited when almost immediately I was getting the TB to do this. The TB also doesn’t lose low end either (only enhances it with my setup) and actually at times really tightens it up which is great. All of this could be very dependant on my setup. I have no idea how it would react through other ones.

-Like I mentioned above, one thing I am really excited about is to use this as a sort of ‘preamp’ as well for my phin and other traditional instruments to really saturate it and give it color. I kind of wish there was a ‘preamp’ version of this that I could use with mics and other sources in stereo. That would be cool and something I would use nearly every session of recording, but probably would not be a ‘best seller’ on ILF. At all.

-For me personally, this pedal was by far my favorite. I am a simple person that likes simple things though. Was a complete 10/10 in my book. Solid construction as well. I don’t really have and criticisms for the TB at all, which surprised me when playing through with it.

RMA STONE SPLITTER

-Took me some time to figure this out not so much as to what it was/ how it worked, but more me thinking about how I would actually use it in my own setup if it were actually mine.

-Basically this thing can turn your guitar into a crazy fat synth, a screaming noise machine, or a sort of glitch garbler. I could really see this being used with drums or samples and it being really cool.

-When the MIX H is lower and the MIX L is higher like in one setting I had, it can get really crazy fat and percussive sounds.

- For me personally, at first just using it on its own I was incredibly disappointed. Not because it wasn't a nice unit, but more so just really struggling to find something that i knew i could really connect with and would be able to use in my recordings if this were actually my pedal. But then once I threw it in a chain with some delay and reverb happening, it wasn’t so overpowering and I was able to wrangle in some sounds that were interesting to me.

- Probably not its intention, but when paired with reverb and delay like stated above in some settings, goth rock, sad boi/girlz songs, or songs by ‘have a nice life’ are easily obtained, as this thing can become a tool for drone pads as well. No dad rock is to be had though… None at all.

-One thing I thought could be cool with this pedal is if there was an out for the effected signal and also one for the dry signal, so that they could be routed to two different amps.

-Another thing that overcame my initial disappointment too was throwing some gain in front to push this pedal (Driving Notion). Again, it just kind of jumped to life after that and was way more useable in the line of things I would use it for in a recording situation.

- This pedal kind of surprised me, because of how much it influenced my playing. Just wasn’t really expecting that. Made me play more ‘to it’ instead of ‘through it’ if that makes any sense.


RMA MONOBIUS

-Again again, again, again?.... yeah again. Really sensitive to what you put in it (any drive or whatever distortion) before it in FUZZ MODE. It brings it snarling to life. On its own it isn’t as strong as with something driving it in front (I used the Tetanus Booster to get the most interesting results with my time with it).

-Honestly this pedal was the hardest for me to wrap my head around, mainly just because of how much it shifts sensitivity and overall levels between each mode/feature. Its definitely not something you just toggle through and find easily what you like/want. You have to really invest a ton of time going through it, basically catering to it, in order to find what you want. And at that point, it isn’t ever anywhere close to what you intended. You just kind of stumble on stuff you think ‘yeah I could work with that’ and then run with it. If this is your way of working, it could be a great pedal. If it isn’t, then it will be a nightmare.

-My favorite sound/setting was basically the sound of a phasing broken radio station transmission. Again, don’t know if that's what it was intended for, but that's what I ended with.

-I thought I would like this pedal the most out of the units besides the TB before playing through them, but in the end I think it was probably my second least favorite. I can see what applications it could be used for and what I liked it for though. One thing that was amazing was using it with the Crustacean Brick. More on that below.

-Don’t really have any criticism for this, other than I guess the warning of knowing what you are getting into with this before you buy it. The interaction between modes and settings correlating to knobs is a nightmare if you don’t have a sheet in front of you guiding and showing what is what. But it just kind of is what it is. It definitely isn’t for everyone.


RMA CRUSTACEAN BRICK

-Will start by saying the lack of a volume knob just about killed this for me. Thought it wouldn’t be a huge deal, but this thing is loud, at least through my setup. More on this below though.

-I liked RUMBLE MODE the best, with CRACKLE followed shortly after in 2nd place

-rumble creates these super heavy drones when paired with a drive in front (liked the TB a lot for this). Really births into something way more present and up front.

-When paired with the monobius, it completely melts down and lurches into this chest rumbling drone tool at points. This is by far my favorite way to use the Monobius, even more so than by itself. They are made for each other, truly.

- really versatile device and think that it could be used with great effect in recording situations for tons of different things. Could use this for anything from sound effect/environment sounding stuff to simulating vinyl or worn cassette effects if done right.

-I understand that this version was supposed to be a stripped down, nothing but necessities version, but like stated above, the lack of volume knob is a deal breaker for me. It is crazy difficult to control without one. And for things like switching to a different output channel (eg. From rumble to crackle), it would be super useful so that you don’t have to hear the exploding ‘POP!’ both when you take the chord out and then put it back in again (would be able to just turn the volume knob down prior to switching).

- I already told Curtis about this before, but I think that my absolute ideal Crustacean would be one that is basically a cross between a Drone Thing pedal and this. If this thing could not only do what it does now, but also could incorporate oscillators that could interact with the different channels (crackle, rumble, etc.) and routing options, this thing would be killer. If it was at or below 200 USD, I would buy this new creation immediately. Our you could send it to me for free under the condition that I would be your spokesperson. That would be even better….

-I think I could just listen to the rumble channel at night and it would put me to sleep, so relaxing…..


OVERALL CONCLUSIONS ::::::::::::

-Enjoyed being a part of the tourbox
-Enjoyed when Curtis sent me diagrams after requesting them so that I knew at least somewhat what I was doing and didn’t have to pull my hair out as much figuring things out. Some of the layout without guidance is not intuitive without direction, especially if you are someone who is interested and wants to understand what is going on when you change/adjust something instead of just thinking 'oh that sounds nice'.
-Enjoyed embracing my inner goth rock for a change, which was unexpected
-My new love is now definitely the Tetanus Booster and I have no other lust for any other drives/distortion/boosts for the foreseeable future. Feels good to be at that point. I was hoping this pedal would do that for me, and it did.
- Really wish I didn’t have to send the other TB along in the tourbox, as I would reeeeeeally like to just keep it and use it for myself 5555555


END///////////////////////////

I will spend a bit more time putting them through tests, but i wanted to update my first initial impressions immediately. I don't see anything drastic changing, but if something comes up this week i will post and address things. Huge thanks to Curtis again for including me, being patient, and for taking care of me. It means a lot. Don't know if anything i am saying will be of any use, but there it is. If anyone has questions or comments about what i wrote, please feel free to post and i will address whatever i can. Thanks everyone
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Re: RMA tourbox

Postby crochambeau » Mon Apr 30, 2018 9:21 am

Image

MASSIVE APOLOGIES ON THE MONUMENTAL DELAY in my getting this thing off the ground. My initial plan was to run two simultaneous boxes, one in the U.S. and one running in rest of world. Currently rest of world is just a handful of people (I will be in touch to form up retained interest if applicable and confirm location) so the U.S. might be the latter leg of that tour.

Or it might not, I am intending on building out the second box after churning through a couple more builds, so hopefully I can pull together a companion box before this one reaches the states.

Holy review, Batman!

ibarakishi wrote:RMA TETANUS BOOSTER:

-Goes from crushing distortion (think burning buildings, or anything on fire really) to brilliant saturated cleans. Added switches i suggested work amazing for premium destruction and scorching. It is most likely going to be an ‘always on’ pedal for me and I might need to get another one in the future so that I can have two in tandem


I thank you for the switch suggestions, given the range of improvement versus cost I've decided to make the two switch model standard. Happy you're happy (and there's a different rack preamp in the works, but I can stick a TB circuit just about anywhere so that's always a custom option).

ibarakishi wrote:RMA STONE SPLITTER

-One thing I thought could be cool with this pedal is if there was an out for the effected signal and also one for the dry signal, so that they could be routed to two different amps.


I like this idea too. The stone splitter is definitely in early prototyping phase, so any and all suggestions are welcome. I went into this project as a challenge to myself, to build an all discrete transistor octave divider, without the expectation that such an effect will be popular. It sits more comfortably with synths and generators for sure.

ibarakishi wrote:RMA MONOBIUS

-Don’t really have any criticism for this, other than I guess the warning of knowing what you are getting into with this before you buy it. The interaction between modes and settings correlating to knobs is a nightmare if you don’t have a sheet in front of you guiding and showing what is what. But it just kind of is what it is. It definitely isn’t for everyone.


I don't know if I can accurately relay how happy I am to read this, thank you. Constructive criticism is something I crave. There are numerous faults in the Monobius, that circuit will eventually serve as a mutant seed for crazy builds, once I get the Polybius finished. I hope to address any complaints with that design, so pile them on!

There are absolutely more accessible ring modulators in existence, hopefully mine can go places otherwise harder to reach.

I feel it worth mentioning that if ever someone has buyers remorse to let me know and we'll get it sorted, and sticking the more challenging stuff into the tourbox format is wise so you can try before you buy.

ibarakishi wrote:RMA CRUSTACEAN BRICK

-Will start by saying the lack of a volume knob just about killed this for me. Thought it wouldn’t be a huge deal, but this thing is loud, at least through my setup.


The "classic" crustacean variant has but a single output and a volume control for each stage, maybe I'll toss one of those into the next one.

Thank you for an in depth analysis, it has been incredibly helpful.

I'll ping global members regarding participation later on today, gimme a yell if you want in. CHEERS

//edit// PS - I am working instructional information for the entire lot of RMA creations, and will upload pertinent data once complete to assist in the exploration. I apologize for not having that sorted earlier. :hobbes:
D.o.S. wrote:This thing is like the Blue Box on the amount of acid that lands you in the ER pretending to play it straight while you try and ignore the fact that the walls are dripping oil.


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Re: RMA tourbox

Postby BetterOffShred » Mon Apr 30, 2018 10:33 am

:joy: Is the list from last year still around ;) I was hoping I'd still be on it!
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Re: RMA tourbox

Postby crochambeau » Mon Apr 30, 2018 10:47 am

BetterOffShred wrote::joy: Is the list from last year still around ;) I was hoping I'd still be on it!


Yes and yes.
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Re: RMA tourbox

Postby fuzzonaut » Tue May 01, 2018 4:30 am

That review is epic - thanks a lot ibarakishi.

What you said about the Tetanus Booster and low end gives me gas.

I hope someone will try these with bass.

RMA ftw!
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Re: RMA tourbox

Postby ibarakishi » Tue May 01, 2018 4:30 am

also, just a suggestion curtis, but you might want to change the subject line of this thread now to state where the current review is (eg. RMA TOURBOX : First Review On Page 4). Would make it easy for people to see where the most recent one is as people keep updating their experiences and ask you questions.
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Re: RMA tourbox

Postby ibarakishi » Tue May 01, 2018 4:37 am

fuzzonaut wrote:That review is epic - thanks a lot ibarakishi.

What you said about the Tetanus Booster and low end gives me gas.

I hope someone will try these with bass.

RMA ftw!



Glad it was useful to you fuzzonaut. I think the tetanus booster really makes the sound become more full when used in a chain with just about anything. I feel like it is pretty neutral too at lighter settings, in that it doesn't so much make your signal something else, but rather just saturates it and give it some girth across the whole spectrum. If you want it to be more bright (useful in a lot of recording situations) then simply just place an overdrive or distortion that is bright in front of it at a super low level so that it shapes the tone of it even further. I did this with great results with the Driving Notion in front of it. I don't have many 'desert island' gear, but i think the TB is on that list now with the DN.

I wish i had a lower frequency sound source or instrument to run tests on it, but from it did with my guitar, i can only imagine it would be great with just about anything you throw at it. The other gear in the tourbox is the same. You can turn your guitar into a crazy sub synth at some settings with the Stone Splitter.
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Re: RMA tourbox

Postby Chankgeez » Tue May 01, 2018 8:50 am

Yeah, ibarakishi, excellent reviews!!! :!!!:

crochambeau wrote:
BetterOffShred wrote: :joy: Is the list from last year still around ;) I was hoping I'd still be on it!


Yes and yes.

ibarakishi wrote:also, just a suggestion curtis, but you might want to change the subject line of this thread now to state where the current review is (eg. RMA TOURBOX : First Review On Page 4). Would make it easy for people to see where the most recent one is as people keep updating their experiences and ask you questions.


You should also reconfirm all contact info with participants. It's been a while. :hug:
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Re: RMA tourbox

Postby crochambeau » Tue May 01, 2018 9:27 am

Chankgeez wrote:
ibarakishi wrote:also, just a suggestion curtis, but you might want to change the subject line of this thread now to state where the current review is (eg. RMA TOURBOX : First Review On Page 4). Would make it easy for people to see where the most recent one is as people keep updating their experiences and ask you questions.


You should also reconfirm all contact info with participants. It's been a while. :hug:


Yes, I'm touching base on the international spectrum as we speak, and I have seen people both drop off and pile on. I will not be touching base on the U.S. side of the list until it is nearing time... mainly to avoid another pulse of activity followed by a lull. If you're not in the U.S., we have discussed the tourbox, and I have not pinged you yet gimme a yell! :hug:
D.o.S. wrote:This thing is like the Blue Box on the amount of acid that lands you in the ER pretending to play it straight while you try and ignore the fact that the walls are dripping oil.


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Re: RMA TOURBOX : First Review On Page 4

Postby Chankgeez » Tue May 01, 2018 9:54 am

:idea: :thumb:
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Re: RMA TOURBOX : First Review On Page 4

Postby PeteeBee » Tue May 01, 2018 12:43 pm

I have a tetanus booster and crustacean coming in the mail soon and I am maximum pumped. I know it's not part of the tourbox, but I'll post up some thoughts. Wish I had a bass to answer that request!
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Re: RMA tourbox

Postby Dandolin » Tue May 01, 2018 7:55 pm

crochambeau wrote:
ibarakishi wrote:RMA TETANUS BOOSTER:

-Goes from crushing distortion (think burning buildings, or anything on fire really) to brilliant saturated cleans. Added switches i suggested work amazing for premium destruction and scorching. It is most likely going to be an ‘always on’ pedal for me and I might need to get another one in the future so that I can have two in tandem


I thank you for the switch suggestions, given the range of improvement versus cost I've decided to make the two switch model standard. Happy you're happy (and there's a different rack preamp in the works, but I can stick a TB circuit just about anywhere so that's always a custom option).


Sorry if I missed this, but I ask what the switches on the Tetanus do? :snax:
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Re: RMA tourbox

Postby crochambeau » Tue May 01, 2018 8:49 pm

Dandolin wrote:Sorry if I missed this, but I ask what the switches on the Tetanus do? :snax:


One is a top boost, the other actuates high gain.
D.o.S. wrote:This thing is like the Blue Box on the amount of acid that lands you in the ER pretending to play it straight while you try and ignore the fact that the walls are dripping oil.


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Re: RMA TOURBOX : First Review On Page 4

Postby Dandolin » Wed May 02, 2018 12:45 am

Well color me intrigued....

:joy: thanks!!! :joy:
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