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How to Get Stevie Ray Vaughan Tone

Running behind on articles for the site as I lost a hard drive and cannot locate my copy of Cakewalk to provide sound examples of pre-distortion EQ settings. In the mean time I thought a quick article on SRV's Tube Screamer and EQ stomp box settings would worth while.

The Amps

SRV used different amps in different situations. The mainstays always being a pair of sequentially numbered Fender 1x15 Vibroverbs, depending on the size of the venue you would also see a pair of Fender Super Reverbs known for their ability to produce loud clean sound with little breakup. While the Vibroverbs would give that much desired "tube breakup" at relatively low volumes, the Supers would be blended into the overall sound for sheer power.

The Effects Pedals

There are two ways to attack the SRV sound both using a Tube Screamer. If you can crank your amp use the Tube Screamer to push the power tubes into overdrive. This is how SRV used the pedal, for more gain not distortion. In other words, he used the TS to push the power tubes harder into overdrive.

To achieve this set the Level to max or where there is no volume increase between pedal off and on, the distortion to maybe 2 (8 o'clock) and the tone to full.

Sound limitations keep you from cranking your amp use the following as a starting point. Set your Tube Screamer to the following: Level 40% (or no volume increase), Tone 50%, Distortion 70%. Also, this will work with any overdrive pedal not just the Ibanez Tube Screamer series. For the EQ you will want a slight boost around the 200 and 1.6 frequencies with a little more boost 3.2 and higher frequencies. The EQ is basically setup to restore some of the frequencies that are lost using the neck pickup.

SRV Tube Screamer Settings

Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer Effects Pedal Original Reissue
Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer Effects Pedal Original Reissue
Boss GE-7 Equalizer Pedal
Boss GE-7 Equalizer Pedal

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