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Grateful Dead Music Forum

A place to talk about the music of the Grateful Dead 

 #97972  by PaulJay
 Mon May 09, 2011 4:08 pm
Hey does anyone use a Boss HM-2 for distortion? I acquired a made in Japan one. Is it worth putting on my pedal board.? ,Paul
 #97974  by jahozer
 Mon May 09, 2011 5:11 pm
I have one. I cant figure out if I like it or not. Its really iffy. At times its 1989 Deal or West LA, or Stranger, distortion perfectly. Sometimes just a hair over and its too much. I wrestle with taking it out of the board, as I kinda just use my tube screamer for slight clipping, but recently started using it again. Try it out. You might like it. I find I keep the distortion really low, as too much and its hair band hell.
 #97977  by petcat
 Mon May 09, 2011 6:08 pm
The HM-2 has a current draw of 10 mA and wants to use a Boss ACA style power adapter. If you're running on battery you'll have problems keeping the sweet spot and if using the wrong AC adapter the pedal may sound weak and be flakey. No matter what type of adapter I plugged mine into the pedal reacted funny until I got that right.

I use a Voodoo Labs pedal power 2 on the ACA setting and it made the HM-2 much more reliable. I keep it in my Gilmour rig.
 #98038  by jahozer
 Tue May 10, 2011 11:25 pm
petcat wrote:The HM-2 has a current draw of 10 mA and wants to use a Boss ACA style power adapter. If you're running on battery you'll have problems keeping the sweet spot and if using the wrong AC adapter the pedal may sound weak and be flakey. No matter what type of adapter I plugged mine into the pedal reacted funny until I got that right.

I use a Voodoo Labs pedal power 2 on the ACA setting and it made the HM-2 much more reliable. I keep it in my Gilmour rig.
Hmmm. Interesting. I do use a one-spot with it. That may make sense.
 #98093  by mijknahs
 Wed May 11, 2011 4:32 pm
PaulJay wrote:Hey does anyone use a Boss HM-2 for distortion? I acquired a made in Japan one. Is it worth putting on my pedal board.? ,Paul
I have one. It's ok. Usable. Garcia used one only in 1988. Kinda tried it out.

I really like my MXR Series 2000 pedal though. Has a blend control that lets some of the guitar tone through. Garcia used it in the mid 80's. Maybe '84-'86 or '87.
 #98194  by ChiroVette
 Fri May 13, 2011 2:39 pm
I find this pedal to be all right for that "Heavy Metal" Garcia sound that Jerry flirted with briefly in the late eighties. I never really ran into a problem using batteries in it, but then I never owned the original adapter, so I guess I just got used to it on battery power. Honestly, today's multi-effects units are so versatile when it comes to distortion and creating patches, I just use my Boss GTA-3 for any patches I want to create with distortion, overdrive, delay, and or Flange/chorus effects.

I will say that I have literally NEVER been able to get an auto-wah sound worth crap from this or any multi-effects unit, and I like the Boss Octaver (OC-2) for my octave dividing, though I never really tried to get good octave dividing from the GT-3, and I bet I could.

My point, in this tangential response, is that some effects, at least in my opinion, are somewhat generic in that you can tweak almost any good digital pedal to get what you like. I just have never really heard any inherent superiority of any of the top of the line distortion pedals over one of the others. Again, not talking about junk here, but Boss, MXR, Roland, etc. I think if you tweak most high end distortion, flangers, chorus, and delay boxes (digital or analog) these days you will get the sound that you want regardless of what Garcia or anyone else used.
 #98211  by jahozer
 Sat May 14, 2011 9:39 am
ChiroVette wrote:I find this pedal to be all right for that "Heavy Metal" Garcia sound that Jerry flirted with briefly in the late eighties. I never really ran into a problem using batteries in it, but then I never owned the original adapter, so I guess I just got used to it on battery power. Honestly, today's multi-effects units are so versatile when it comes to distortion and creating patches, I just use my Boss GTA-3 for any patches I want to create with distortion, overdrive, delay, and or Flange/chorus effects.

I will say that I have literally NEVER been able to get an auto-wah sound worth crap from this or any multi-effects unit, and I like the Boss Octaver (OC-2) for my octave dividing, though I never really tried to get good octave dividing from the GT-3, and I bet I could.

My point, in this tangential response, is that some effects, at least in my opinion, are somewhat generic in that you can tweak almost any good digital pedal to get what you like. I just have never really heard any inherent superiority of any of the top of the line distortion pedals over one of the others. Again, not talking about junk here, but Boss, MXR, Roland, etc. I think if you tweak most high end distortion, flangers, chorus, and delay boxes (digital or analog) these days you will get the sound that you want regardless of what Garcia or anyone else used.
Maybe. I dont go for "what Jerry used" either, but I still hear the difference in the digital stuff. No way can you tell me that a boss or whatever multi fx is going to give you a tube>screamer>overdriven tube sound. Now, the HM2 is fairly generic, but try to take my analogman TS9 Silver from me and I will cut your head off!
THey are getting closer, and at low levels, head phones, etc, its very close, but turn that stuff up and it just sounds a hair wonky. Axe FX players here not included... :lol: