Monday, 14 May 2012

Barber LTD Silver

Dave Barber makes some very nice effects, with high quality workanship and at reasonable prices, so as usual with this kind of builder show your support and buy something from him if and when you can.  For those who want a taster here's the LTD silver with all 6 external controls.

Info from Dave about the original:

Silver L.T.D.

The Silver LTD low gain overdrive is now available in a custom silver hammertone paint. The Silver LTD carries the sweet clear overdrive character of the Classic LTD, but with a flatter eq response. The Silver LTD continues the tradition of stellar chord clarity, with copious sweetness and harmonics.

Sweet Spot tone control, very subtle tone shift that is usable throughout the entire rotational range.

    * Precision matched components-using proprietary specifications to ensure symmetrical clipping and reduced intermodulation distortion.
    * True bypass switching with led indicator- this is achieved by using an extremely high grade switch, in addendum Solid 20 gauge copper hookup wire is used between the jacks and switching.
    * Full size pots- for durability and for easy serviceability if needed.
    * Hand made-we make the LTD one at a time and each one is signed and dated by the craftsman.
    * Volume knob response circuitry-more shades shades and textures at your fingertips than ever before,just by adjusting your volume knob.
    * Cast aluminum enclosure-our incredibly durable enclosure will last decades if not centuries!
    * Double sided pc board with plate through holes-This is the way the military does it when they want electronics to work FOREVER! all pedals should be made this way , few are....once again Barber electronics draws the line in the sand!
    * Three knob control +2 internal adjustments -The LTD uses a simple three knob control layout to keep things easy on the performer. There are two more trim adjusts inside of the LTD so the most demanding player can match bass and presence to his/her needs.
    * Ready for 18 volt operation-The LTD operates from 9 volts to 18 volts, this allows use of higher voltage converters and supplies, for players who want to try higher voltage tweaks.
    * Vintage and modern style components- Players have requested the use of carbon comp resistors, metalized polyester and silver mica caps. These components were thought to be only available on the highest priced pedals. Players asked, and we delivered...no problem. In addition the Silver LTD has some modern components to get things dialed in perfectly.
    * Center EQ tone control- This Barber tuned vintage style control is meant to sound balanced at the 12 o clock position, from there going up adds treble and cuts bass, turning it down adds bottom and cuts treble. The Silver LTD makes use of the entire range of the tone adjustment with a Sweet Spot tone control.

The Story

The Silver LTD was reborn from and early LTD prototype that some of our best known beta testers and friends had fallen in love with and refused to ever return (thieves!). We took this early flatter response prototype and tuned it in to the enth degree and now we are making it available to the guitar playing masses.

The Sound

With a perfectly tuned drive and new Sweet Spot subtle tone controls you will hear terms like; clean, purring, bloom, twang, sweet, balanced, smooth, clear, sustain, harmonics etc... flying through your head and hands!


Update: I've just seen a gutshot which showed a JRC4040G opamp, which I've never even heard of.  I think most people building these effects will have their own favourite ICs that they like to use, so just try any dual opamp to get the best sound to your ears.  TL072 and NE5532 always sound good to me in almost everything I try them in.






22 comments:

  1. Thanks a ton. Will try it out.

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  2. I have the original LTD and it's one of the few pedals I'll keep so this is definitely on the list. The IC seems pretty shy though, is there any other similar you'd suggest? JRC4558, RC4588P maybe?

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    1. Just read your update.. sorry, it's early ;o)

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  3. what would be a similar circuit to this? is it tubescreamer based?

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    1. There are similarities to the Tubescreamer, but only in standard audio electronic practices such as diodes in the feedback loop. To me Dave has taken ideas from a number of different pedals (or audio circuit snippets) and brought them together in this. The first gain stage is most similar to a TS, but not identical and with an additional presence control. That's followed by a Big Muff tone stack, followed by an active mid and bass control. There are a lot of good ideas that have gone into this and it should make a really versatile effect.

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  4. Sounds very very good. It's really a great design. I don't know, but presence seems to be quite unnecessary. It may be in my build, but it does next to nothing - mainly it just dials the amount of low frequency hiss, from none to some. Bass and middle controls are amazing. Tone control feels really numb with those two on board... It's very articulate and doesn't get mushy at all on bedroom volumes and it's not piercing sharp either. Perfect middle ground.

    Tried on a few different opamps like JRC4558, LM833, TL062, TL072, LF353, NE5532 and finally the "one" - TLC2262. None of those sounded bad or weak, but to my ear, the TL072, NE5532 were the best options. Until i tried that TLC2262. It's very close to TL072, but it has some little thing in it's sound that others don't have. Good thing i got a few of these some time ago :)

    Anyway. Great OD. Totally different from classic ODs with good and wide controls. Definitely recommended buy or build.

    Mark! Tag it!
    +m

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    1. Ooops! I made this about a month ago and completely forgot to update! Sorry... Yes the presence doesn't seem to do much at all. If I make another I would probably omit it.

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    2. Yeah. I'm going to replace it's wires with 10K resistor before i box it..

      :) Dude! Do you have some other builds verified that you're not telling us?! :D
      +m

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    3. LOL! No just this one. I completely forgot about it.

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  5. Done. Used 8.2k in place of 13.3k and 47n in place of 27n; Great overdrive, I think its gonna stay on the board; best TS alternative after the zen.

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  7. Ok guys did some further mods to this one.....I swapped the 10n cap which is parallel to 27n in the layout for a 100n, and boy o boy now this one is a bad boy goes from mild OD all the way to medium distortion territory, and the presence knob is now the magic knob much like the voice knob on the zendrive, but its acting in a reverse way why I don't know. That is CCW is bright and CW is dark.....the Tone knob is as usual useless, but adding a subtle eq option.....

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  8. I took my LTD build out of the bag yesterday, and played with it for a while. I don't know how and why i didn't notice on the first test run that the tone does also next to nothing. I started to rebuild the board and today i'm going to mod it a bit. I really like the active low and mid range controls, but since tone and presence are next to useless, i think i'll just omit those with 4K7 as presence and tone with a wire from tone 1 to tone 2. Then i'm thinking about adding SWTC2 between board output and volume pot. This way there will be active low, active mid and passive high controls. Base sound of this circuit is just great, so modding it a bit could make it super. I'll let you know...
    +m

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    1. Ok. Finished.

      Like i said above, i omitted the tone and presence pots from the board and replaced them with link wire from tone 1 to tone 2 and 4K7 resistor between presence 1 and presence 2&3. Then i took vol 3 to my little utility board (depicted here: http://mirosol.kapsi.fi/varasto/boxes_other/amz_swtc2.png) and sticked that's output to volume 3.

      Yes. It eats up a bit of level from the effect, but it is still loud enough. Now there is active low, active mid and passive high controls on the LTD Silver sound! Which makes it really nice OD. I think i got a bit better volume control using B100K. Even C100K would probably work great.

      One option for this fine circuit would be to use dual gang pot for mids and bass..

      Anyway. It was fun to build and mod - and it sounds really good. Better than TS9 definitely, but not as good as Klon :) It's in a box, and i'll get a photo of it as soon as get some decoration done on it.
      +m

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  9. I've just completed my LTD using a slightly differant lay out from DIY Stompbox forum. All the components match the above its a very nice OD sounds sweet,But!its output is low I have to crank my amp way up?? I was expecting a boost? Any body else have this problem any fixs?

    Lay out http://www.aronnelson.com/gallery/main.php/v/slackers-stuff/diyltdboard.jpg.html (R4&C4 R3&C4 are crossed)

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    1. Mine works in quite the same manner. It's not loud, but with all knobs at middle position, it's a bit over unity. And up from there. Haven't had a chance to play with the original....

      Sounds really good, even though it is a bit quiet. Actually i thought my unloudness was caused by my tone mod.. :)
      +m

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    2. I'm not close to unity with all knobs maxed, more debugging needed.
      Shame I didn't this excellant site befor I started my build marks layouts look tidy & verified.
      Thanks for the reply m

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  10. Mirosol's idea of the tone control rules..... :) after reading it I did the same mod and now it rocks, but I used 8.2k in place of 13.3k and 68n in place of 27n and 500kA gain pot........its total awesomeness now.

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  11. I have a query for mirosol.......with this tone mod , the treble control is also adding more volume as we turn it clockwise and the volume knob is rolling off some treble as well on turning CCW, is it supposed to behave this way ? and can we do the treble bleed mod on the vol pot? that is putting a 130k resistor and 1.2nf capacitor in series between lugs 3 and 2 of volume pot..... Pls suggest.

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  12. I've built it and it worked fine until suddenly the drive knob stopped adding any gain and it now sounds kinda like a clean boost.

    Any ideas?

    Thanks

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