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Ashdown's well built but noisy pedals....

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by SpanishDave, Oct 26, 2013.

  1. SpanishDave


    Mar 3, 2009
    Vigo Spain
    Evening all. Along with a few MXR pedals, I have an Ashdown Drive plus pedal on my board.
    I don't have and am looking for a chorus pedal. An Ashdown pedal has come up locally and I can probably get it for 30€ (£25/$45 roughly).
    The problem, the Drive plus pedal I have has some great sounds and is very usable but the moment you turn it on, hissssssssssssssssss. Once you're playing completely unnoticeable but it's there. So, the chorus pedal?
    Can anyone suggest an easy fix? Is this a grounding issue? Any advice very welcome.
    It seems so silly that ashdown built the outside of the pedal like tanks and the inside like crap.

  2. SpanishDave


    Mar 3, 2009
    Vigo Spain
  3. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    Maybe add a noise suppressor/gate pedal?
  4. Ajak


    Mar 31, 2012
    Bern, Switzerland
    Overdrive pedals usually tend to produce more noise than other types of pedals. That doesn't mean that other Ashdown pedals are noisy as well. Overdrive is a type of compression and therefore also amplifies noise. A chorus shouldn't do that.

    That being said, I've never used the Ashdown chorus.
  5. SpanishDave


    Mar 3, 2009
    Vigo Spain

    Hi, the ashdown pedals all seem to have this problem. The Ashdpwn drive plus as an overdrive can be expected to produced some noise but along side my OBD3 or envelope my El grande bass fuzz it's producing a pronounced hiss. The reviews across ultimate guitar, musicians friend, and gear slutz all mention this about ashdown pedals.

    A real shame because outside they are like brick shot houses.

    Thanks fort he comment
  6. geoffwaite


    Mar 22, 2012
    New England
    I just aquired a bass drive plus too, and took it off my board because of the noise, but I did kind of like the pedal - nicely subtle and keeps the low end solid. However, my feeling is that this problem should be solvable and I'm about to try. I think most of it is shielding ground loops and floating grounds. I'll post back results and what worked
  7. NoxNoctus

    NoxNoctus The Crushinator

    May 9, 2004
    Annapolis, MD
    I had the Lomenzo Hyperdrive, I don't recall it being particularly noisy, and I was running it off a OneSpot.

    Try isolating the power supply?
  8. geoffwaite


    Mar 22, 2012
    New England
    so I had a good poke arounf the pedal. Here is what I found:

    three sources of noise:

    1) moderate noise from no grounded case (buzz, gets worse when you touch it)
    2) large noise from poor power filtering (mains hum)
    3) small but acceptabe (IMHO) electronicsnoise when active

    Cause of 1) is stupid, but fix is easy. They rely on grounding the case through the pot bodies. They also do a great job of powder coating the case. bad combination:rolleyes:. The pots do not ground the case. Solution rub away (emory cloth, file, sandpaper) the coating on the back of the case where the pots contact it and the inside edge of the hole for good measure. In fact, they rely on one pot (nearest the LED) to ground the case, so that is the only critical one. However, the other pots are also potential antennas, so I'd just remove the paint from the case in front of every pot. I also recommend removing the paint in the countersink screw holes for attaching the other half of the case to make suer this gets grounded as well. Et voila - no more interfernce buzz

    As for 2), a better noise filter on the power input would do the trick. However, I'm just making sure of a relatively good power source (there will be none of this noise with a battery). I'm using a one-spot and it's OK, even if not the best. I have a universal wall wart which results in a horrible mains hum.

    With both of these issues addressed, the pedal is as quiet as any other on my board, so I can live with that.

    As an aside - there is a completely different issue on my pedal - the input stage gain is too low and the output stage gain is too high. I switched R4 from 47k to 1M and that made the input control more useful - I dropped R33 from 100k to 47k, but it's made little different. I think the output from the distortion stage is too high, so I plan next to drop this. I will report results!

    Hope this helps someone out there!
    Jedson likes this.

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