Help with Dirt Transmitter Fuzz



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Help with Dirt Transmitter Fuzz

Postby TheSickness2 » Fri Feb 20, 2015 8:15 am

Hey y'all,


yesterday I got my new Dirt Transmitter in the mail and have been playing for hours.
It's (freakin') awesome but I've got a few issues here.

While experimenting with the settings I noticed that when I turned the Bias (and Dirt) completely or almost completely down my output signal would almost die immediately.
I know that the Bias control affects the current the transistors are fed with, but when I played some notes the most of them weren't even audible or decayed super-fast into some sort of "fart".

I compared it to demo videos on youtube where people do these kinds of extreme settings and was surprised that their tone doesn't simply die off.

For example:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTqiPJ2BeDk at 3:15
(wonderful sputtery tones without a massive decline in sustain, although it's an older version)
and
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CHiQ4igBO_s at 1:45
(more splattery, but nevertheless audible).

If I turn the Bias higher than let's say 9 o'clock, my signal gets stronger again.
Also, with most of the pedals I watched being demoed the pedal still sounded pretty saturated at lower Dirt settings - mine is almost clean
but has a slight overdrive-like breakup just on top of the signal (for instance directly when I hit the strings, but it decays quickly).

(Additionally the pedal does some sort of almost quiet buzzing when the Dirt is at maximum - but it fades when it is turned just a millimeter back.)

I wonder if that's normal or some sort of manufacturing error?
Maybe the range of the controls has been increased and the pedal is now capable of even more destroyed/gated sounds and also can get cleaner?
Or is it some kind of natural variance due to the pedals being manufactured by hand?

I would love to hear if you had similar experiences or maybe if even the admin could give a statement here.

Ah, and by the way: I've only played it through a 9V battery yet because it doesn't fit on my pedalboard yet. Maybe that helps.


Thanks for your time!
Greetz and love.
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Re: Help with Dirt Transmitter Fuzz

Postby damski66 » Fri Feb 20, 2015 11:50 am

Mine does the same thing. it's normal. It is odd that so much of the knobs range is unusable though. Perhaps if you really drive it with a heavy signal it works.

I never have my bias before 12 o clock myself.

Superb Pedal though!
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Re: Help with Dirt Transmitter Fuzz

Postby earthdevice » Fri Feb 20, 2015 11:02 pm

Totally normal. How it reacts really depends on the fuzz setting and how hot the incoming signal is.
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Re: Help with Dirt Transmitter Fuzz

Postby neonblack » Sat Feb 21, 2015 1:07 am

Run a boost before it?
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Re: Help with Dirt Transmitter Fuzz

Postby TheSickness2 » Sun Feb 22, 2015 1:42 pm

Ah, that's good to hear it's normal.
I tried it with hotter pickups and it worked quite a bit better, but I was nevertheless irritated because one of the demoers played with a single-coil equipped strat and I play hot-rodded humbuckers, but yeah.

I don't own a booster, but I've tried it with an TS-style overdrive with gain at minimum - unfortunately it's buffered, so it alters the tone of the fuzz.
I found out the Dirt Transmitter sounds best when it's the first pedal in the chain, so I placed it even before my tuner (Korg Pitchblack).
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Re: Help with Dirt Transmitter Fuzz

Postby benjuro » Tue Feb 24, 2015 6:33 am

TheSickness2 wrote:I found out the Dirt Transmitter sounds best when it's the first pedal in the chain, so I placed it even before my tuner (Korg Pitchblack).


Likely depends on what other pedals you are using--maybe if you're putting something buffered in front of it, but I've never found mine sensitive to chain placement. One of my fave combinations is to run my Sound Shank into my Dirt Transmitter :rock:
Special low-frequency version.
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Re: Help with Dirt Transmitter Fuzz

Postby antennafarm » Thu Feb 26, 2015 1:12 am

generally speaking, when you're in that zone of the bias knob, you've gotta jam a signal into it. lead notes won't push it enough, you have to do chords or, even further down, boost the shit out of your signal. it's just a part of the game with that pedal... VERY good sounds out of it, though!
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Re: Help with Dirt Transmitter Fuzz

Postby TheSickness2 » Mon Mar 23, 2015 7:41 pm

Thanks for your help!

I have played with it for some time now and think now I understand better how the pedal's functioning, how the controls are interacting and how the pedal's behaviour changes according to your input signal.
I were able to apply that knowledge and dial in the sounds I were looking for. But I'm seriously thinking about buying a booster... Could you recommend me a good one? EHX Soul Food?
But I wonder... isn't a buffer (like that one in Boss pedals) some kind of "fixed" booster?
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Re: Help with Dirt Transmitter Fuzz

Postby antennafarm » Sun Mar 29, 2015 4:32 pm

if i understand buffers correctly, yeah, pretty much.

EHX is probably fine, but I think boosters are sort of a to-taste thing... like, are you looking for clean? EQ available? personally, i would suggest looking at the overdrive series from catalinbread -- you can use it as a boost OR get a little dirt on your signal. they're based on various preamps... i've used the hiwatt (wiio), ac30 (cb30) and marshall superlead/superbass (DLS) and they're all great sounding.
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