HomeForumsEquipmentPedal Order with Steve Vai – GREAT Video

This topic contains 10 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  superblonde 3 weeks, 6 days ago.

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  • #2725




    Give this a watch – it’s long but and EXCELLENT video about foot pedal order.



  • #2738

    Sarah Spisak

    Thanks for sharing this!  🙂

  • #2762


    “The vital thing is that you find your own note. Anything goes, really! Conventional [effects] orders mean nothing, it can give you a start, but you might find a combination of things that responds to your own note.” — Steve Vai

    I loved this video. I’m going to watch it a second time to take notes.  The video really showed his classic tone– especially from Passion and Warfare.  The whole hour is very instructional. I also learned Steve is really open and ready to talk about playing. He didn’t hold anything back.  He also said we should “find a way to play and not judge ourselves.”  I’ll take that to heart!

    Metal Method is helping me across the board!

  • #2770


    I’ve watched this video like ten times so much to learn.Even Steves’ set up wasn’t too complicated man what tone!!The fact that he used readily available pedals to get those sounds was super cool.I really liked the OD 1 x pedal in that vid seeing I’m looking for another od/distortion.Thanks for sharing for the other members.

    "The level of achievement that we have at anything is a reflection of how well we're able to focus on it " Steve Vai

    • #2772

      Dave Pickering

      There are a lot of really great overdrive pedals out there. A couple I really like are the Seymour Duncan 805 and the Earthquaker Devices Talons.

      My biggest fear is when I die, my wife will sell my guitars for what I told her they cost.

  • #2780


    I agree – a pedal discussion could go on for DAYS and DAYS 😉  The cool thing about the video is that he is showing you how he gets a lot of his really cool tone with just pretty average pedals and a solid effects path chain – that is really cool and very helpful I think.

  • #22452


    I still dont have pedals so this entire topic is a mystery. It finally makes sense that pedals are separate little units that can be swapped around in different orders like tetris blocks, to get the proper fit for the situation. Although to me that means massive inefficiency with all the cable in’s and cable out’s, and having to constantly swap things around all the time. To me the best ‘ultimate’ combination would be a single multi-pedal but that kills the ability to swap the order. Like Delay for example. Delay being first, or Delay being last. The ‘ultimate’ multi-pedal I guess would have to have two Delays (for example), one first and one last, and then turn on or off the desired one.

    I see cover band guys with massive pedal boards, dozens of them clustered on a board, and they’re tap dancing through a set. I guess this is required because the variety of cover songs have such different tones. Then in contrast there’s MAB and other guitar heroes who say: “I used to use a lot of pedals then I got rid of all of them and now I only use two, an overdrive and a delay”. But I guess they get away with this, because, they have a signature tone and don’t have to emulate other tones on cover songs? I dunno. There’s no way to play authentic Jack White tones without a Pog or those other octave-bender pedals he uses and which are becoming popular in songs now (and they’re physically large pedals, take up a lot of space, not mini).

    For example, a complete signal chain with smallest footprint? :

    1. Tom’s Line Engineering Michael Angelo Batio signature Mini Vintage Overdrive
    2. Tom’s Line Engineering Michael Angelo Batio signature Mini Digital Delay and Echo Delay Pedal APE3S
    3. Tom’s Line Engineering Michael Angelo Batio signature Mini Analogue Chorus Pedal ACH3S
    4. Tube Pedal Pre-Amp -> direct out (w/ included cabinet sim)
    Mixer board or Powered Cabinet/PA

    I'm an intermediate student of Metal Method. I play seitannic heavy metal. All Kale Seitan! The glutens will be eaten with relish!
    And on the Seventh Day, Mustaine said: ∇ ⨯ E = - ∂B / ∂t ; and there was Thrash; and it had a ♭3; and it was good.

  • #22887


    Steve Vai always pointed out you don`t need sci fi high tech pedals to achieve great tone. He still uses the old orange coloured Boss distorsion…

    <a href="https://www.musicskanner.com/best-electric-guitars-2016-epic-guide/">Music Scanner</a>: All around Music

  • #22894


    Good companion video to the one above

    DIY: How to Wire Your Pedalboard

    Premier Guitar
    Published on Apr 28, 2015

    There’s more to a badass board than picking cool pedals and slapping Velcro on them. Here, PG’s John Bohlinger walks you through three critical areas that make the difference between tonal nirvana and frustrating, expensive guesswork.

    I'm an intermediate student of Metal Method. I play seitannic heavy metal. All Kale Seitan! The glutens will be eaten with relish!
    And on the Seventh Day, Mustaine said: ∇ ⨯ E = - ∂B / ∂t ; and there was Thrash; and it had a ♭3; and it was good.

  • #22895


    for years i used multi-fx pedals like korg ax1000g and boss me6.

    i liked the relative simplicity to be able to totally change sounds from song to song. great when playing everything from the eagles to megadeth and just about everything in between.

    although, you can spend an infinite amount of hours dialing in all the options.

    lately i’ve seen these “fly rig” type of all in one pedals.

    whether it’s the tech21 fly rig or the more affordable valeton mini dapper or the donner alpha cruncher you can get a simple minimalist pedal board that includes distortion, chorus, delay and some of them include a built-in tuner.

    i have found the simplicity of the marshall mg100fx in which i have four sounds programmed into the optional footcontroller – a clean with chorus; a light crunch; full overdrive, and lead which is the full overdrive with a little boost and some delay.

    i have thought about adding something like the alpha cruncher to use as a boost and additional options for chorus and delay.

    rock and roll ain't pretty; that's why they picked us to play it.

  • #22896


    It’s funny you mention fly rig because I spent the past week watching tons of videos on them (plus the competitors) and I think I am going to get the RK5 fly rig (after previously looking so much into foot modellers like HD500X etc). My priorities are: small as possible, and light as possible, and go straight to PA or straight into clean backline amp. Anyway right now even with the variety of songs I am playing and skill level, I dont have the presence of mind to tweak anything while playing thru my setlist, let alone program in a lot of stuff in order to do that.. at most I am tweaking my volume and tone knobs and changing pickup selector plus controlling the drum pedal. The fly rig is literally only 11.5″ x 1.5″ in size and amp simulation included so given that RK uses it himself for live shows it seems a really good fit. Otherwise I had thought about getting mini pedals and bolting them together into a unit which is too fiddly for me. I agree simple is good. That way I can spend more time practicing rather than programming. I started following the RK5 listings on ebay which are somewhere around $180-$200 which is really good. I can see others with no size or weight or power concerns would simply get a big stack and tube amp.

    Pete Thorn though geez. A couple days ago put a new video up on his channel, showing his new custom pedal board (which probably cost >$8000) and it weighs approx 35 pounds, 3’x4′ size(?), and then inside the industrial flight case they weighed the total at 62 lbs. His new pedal board is almost bigger than me 😛

    The new small amplifire pedal videos already show that digital and IR is now good or better than tube and cab, but still as simple, small and light as that amplifire pedal is, there’s still menus and programming. Otherwise it seems great for size and weight and builtin amp/speaker sim.

    The irony of the premier guitar video I posted is that Bolinger wrote an editorial in the past couple months, the old cliche, saying like “I’m not going to chase tone anymore, I’ve spent too long chasing something that can’t exist, I’m getting rid of all my pedals and focusing on the tone from my fingers” HAH!

    My only thing is that I am playing Jack White songs and they need something like a POG. Those tones can’t come from fingers. And Neil Young songs need some kind of sub octave to sound fat. So even with flyrig, ideally I would have to add that at least. It looks like without really trying, my future pedal board will end up being over $1000+. Looper + drum pedal + external foot switches + fly rig + octaver is already over that cost. Way more than my guitar and $200 Alto PA combined. 😮

    Addendum.. there’s a rig video with RK where he actually uses two RK5 fly rigs precisely for the reason I suggested in my previous post. “This is how I get my tone… and this other one, I just use as a second really long delay”. He doesn’t use anything else from the 2nd RK5 pedal except the delay unit. So he chose to add 2 delay pedals on his setup. Pretty subtle detail. Also the main youtube comment complaint about tech21 fly rig pedals is they don’t have a tuner so that needs to be added too. Except! RK has another video explaining that he uses a special tuner built-in to his stage guitar, the tuner indicator is inside the guitar volume knob. So he has no need for a tuner pedal (saving more real estate and eliminating more hassle). Unfortunately the company is out of business since years ago but the product looks great. It seemed to work for RK so…

    Here’s the product.


    Sure I use the piezo clip on tuners instead, but those don’t work well on stage if there is a lot of noise that couples into the guitar body (like the bass player noodling or loud cars driving by.. forget trying to tune if a nearby harley starts up)

    I'm an intermediate student of Metal Method. I play seitannic heavy metal. All Kale Seitan! The glutens will be eaten with relish!
    And on the Seventh Day, Mustaine said: ∇ ⨯ E = - ∂B / ∂t ; and there was Thrash; and it had a ♭3; and it was good.

    1. N-Tune-On-Board-Chromatic-Electric-Guitar-Tuner.jpg

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