Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

DC-2, 3, 5, 10
50 Caliber

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St. Hood
Bottle Rocket
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Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by St. Hood » Fri Nov 15, 2013 11:10 am

Hello everyone,

I have basically a stock (far as I know) DC-5 which basically has one volume. Loud. seriously.
Nothing with volume until about 2.65879 on volume knob then it has balls (BIG BALLS, kind they make scary movies of) then the volume only changes minor between 3-10. Maybe I don't know how to set my amp. This seems to be common among guitar amps in general.
I have purchased a Dr. Z air brake and use mid setting and my amp is still LOUD!
That's it.
What I want out of my amp is a little less growl out of the box so I can have more mid bell jingle. Have some classic rock sound before going full out metal. It's seems to switch over very early across my 10 digit control. So no need turning knob much. Is this normal? I have other amps but they don't go ape shik on me right off. It's exhibits this behavior across all three channels.
Is this just a simple tube swap? I want it to do clean, classic rock (dirty clean), and what it does now!
I do like to play with my guitar volume close to max for added clarity.
Describing what you hear is problem-matic due to we don't all hear the same. I have less hearing probably than most and do enjoy the silent ringing as well. I play the amp with one foam earplug and a Hearos in other ear. Also I do sit right in front of it too with amp at chest/head level. So this is also part of the problem with hearing what I want to hear. So lets start with the volume issue first.

Almost deaf, Stephen

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ryjan
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by ryjan » Fri Nov 15, 2013 12:33 pm

There's an easy mod for this problem.

First you'll need to make sure everything is in good shape and clean. You should probably photograph the amp at this point from a few different angles for later reference.
Next you'll need to open an account with your local craigslist website. (It's free. :D )
You will then want to place an ad with the aforementioned photographs.
Sooner or later someone will be by to exchange your faulty amp for some form of currency. (Beware any monies from Nigeria)
After the exchange is made you can then seek out and appropriate Mark series amp that falls in the price range you'd like to be in.
Make the currency/amp exchange as described in the earlier step but this time in reverse.

See? An easy mod and you don't even have to know how to solder. 8)

In all seriousness it sounds like a Mark III, IV, or V would suit you better for what you're trying to play.
Mark V:25
Recto 2x12
ESP Explorer

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sKenDread
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by sKenDread » Mon Nov 18, 2013 11:47 am

Hi Stephen,
Well I sincerely hope you are not almost deaf mate from this amp in any case. I had a few of them since the 90's.

I think these amps were designed for stage performance hence the "loudness" or lack of volume control below 2. Mine is usually set at about 4 so yeah i know what you mean by loud. There are ways to reduce the volume but you will not get that tube driven sound as much.

I use a volume pedal basically in the loop which obviously controls the overall level. My amp has a serial loop mod so the FX loop is set internally to serial allowing me to use the volume pedal for complete level control.

You can also try the blanket mod and volume mod. Just do a search in this forum for it. That will help tame the volume control.

I use the clean channel for that classic rock sound.
Pull the gain pot and set it relatively high. You will have to use the GEQ to shape the tone though as the boost is created by removing the pre distortion tone stack from the circuit.
I love the sound of my DC5 clean channels as you can get that lovely chiming bell like tone from it.

If you want a little bit more hair without heading for the hellish gain of channel 2, whack a tube screamer( Overdrive pedal) in the front, set that pedals gain pretty low with the volume set to about 1 o'Clock and tone set to about 10 oClock. That will definitely put you in the classic rock tone zone

Best of luck mate and look after those ears!
GUITARS: Taniwha 7 String, 69 Fender Stratocaster Original & Les Paul Copy
FX: Morley Bad Horsie 2, Digitech Whammy DT, Boss GT-10, Custom True Bypass Stomp, Channel/EQ/REV & Mesa Boogie DC-5B
SETUP: GAT > GT10 > DC5 4 Cable method

Fxrs
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by Fxrs » Tue Nov 26, 2013 9:49 pm

Pull the gain pot and set it relatively high. You will have to use the GEQ to shape the tone though as the boost is created by removing the pre distortion tone stack from the circuit.
If the tone stack is removed, why does the manual say to set treble and mid high and bass and presence low? Wouldn't it not matter where T/M/B are set if they're removed from the circuit?

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sKenDread
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by sKenDread » Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:42 pm

Fxrs wrote:Pull the gain pot and set it relatively high. You will have to use the GEQ to shape the tone though as the boost is created by removing the pre distortion tone stack from the circuit.
If the tone stack is removed, why does the manual say to set treble and mid high and bass and presence low? Wouldn't it not matter where T/M/B are set if they're removed from the circuit?
No idea mate. I'm not an official rep so I can't answer for them. Give it a try and see for yourself. Man I just doubted myself and had to plug it up again to check.

The presence isn't part of the tone stack It happens in a loop kind of way in the power amp section so pulling the boost pot wont effect the engagement.
GUITARS: Taniwha 7 String, 69 Fender Stratocaster Original & Les Paul Copy
FX: Morley Bad Horsie 2, Digitech Whammy DT, Boss GT-10, Custom True Bypass Stomp, Channel/EQ/REV & Mesa Boogie DC-5B
SETUP: GAT > GT10 > DC5 4 Cable method

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jargapix
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by jargapix » Tue Jan 07, 2014 3:33 am

So, besides selling it for a roadster or mark series are there any other recommendations for lowering te volume on this guy? I recently got one & can get lower volume but I would love a 5/25/50 multi watt switch. Can that be installed? Not be me of course but by a licensed tech.
JA

SixVeeSix
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by SixVeeSix » Fri Jan 24, 2014 2:13 am

I just got a DC-5, my seventh Mesa. I read this post and others like it. I solved the problem in my head before the amp arrived.

Turn the Main Master to 5 or so. Turn all the other knobs to 0. Set your Channel Masters fairly low, 2-3-ish.

Start bringing up bits and dabs of gain, treble, middle, and bass. It won't take much but the tapers are very smooth and easy to control.

Add presence and reverb to taste. You may or may not need the graphic EQ but you can do the same thing with it, turn it all the way down and start slowly dialing.

I live in a small condo in a multi-unit complex and totally rocked out tonight in my living room. Plugged a stock Gibson Les Paul Studio straight in and got pretty much any tone I want including some pretty high gain stuff. Not loud enough to bother anybody, sounded great. I missed my Mesas, glad to have one again!

Everybody starts with their preamp knobs all cranked to hell and you will NEVER get a good low volume setting that way.
There is never enough time to be in a hurry.

Currently in possesion:
Dual Caliber DC-5 1-12
Gone but not forgotten:
Subway Rocket
Blue Angel 1-12
Mesa Maverick 1-12
Subway Blues
.22 Caliber
Mark IIIC Simul-class head w/reverb and eq

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crguti
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by crguti » Fri Jan 24, 2014 7:23 am

SixVeeSix wrote:Turn the Main Master to 5 or so. Turn all the other knobs to 0. Set your Channel Masters fairly low, 2-3-ish.
Start bringing up bits and dabs of gain, treble, middle, and bass. It won't take much but the tapers are very smooth and easy to control.
Turn all the other knobs to 0....? This is the stupidest way to eq an amp. Start with everything at noon instead.

SixVeeSix
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by SixVeeSix » Fri Jan 24, 2014 1:17 pm

Perhaps you should try it instead of just insulting people when you don't know what you are talking about? :roll:

The issue is getting a DC-5 to a lower volume when the Main Master "jumps" from too quiet to too loud.

So, set the Main Master past the touchy part of the taper and use the preamp controls as a set of smooth tapered volume controls.

Setting the tone knobs at noon IS part of the problem, not the solution. Here are the settings I was using last night, try them.

Main Master is set at 5.5
Clean channel - Gain 2.5, Treble 3.5, Mid 3.5, Bass 2.5, Presence 5.5, Reverb 5, Channel Master 2.75
Lead channel - Gain 4.5, Treble 4.5, Mid 1.5, Bass 2, Presence 3.5, Reverb 5, Channel Master .75

For me, that is great tone at bedroom volume running a Les Paul straight in. Everybody else will have to adjust to their own instrument, style and tone they like but the principle remains the same. When you turn your tone controls to zero, no sound comes out of your speaker. They are active bandpass volume controls and they do not "jump" in volume so very easy to adjust.

Of course, when you need to play loud your settings will be completely different. That is not the topic of this discussion.
There is never enough time to be in a hurry.

Currently in possesion:
Dual Caliber DC-5 1-12
Gone but not forgotten:
Subway Rocket
Blue Angel 1-12
Mesa Maverick 1-12
Subway Blues
.22 Caliber
Mark IIIC Simul-class head w/reverb and eq

frood
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by frood » Wed Jan 29, 2014 5:57 am

I'm gonna try this on my Caliber. The volume isn't super touchy but it's almost always too loud for home use if you live in a block of flats.
Caliber .50+, Quad preamp, Marshall 9005, Lexicon MPX100, Orange PPC112

Monsta-Tone
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by Monsta-Tone » Wed Jan 29, 2014 6:42 am

The Master Volume Mod will easily fix this.
I usually install a push/pull 1M audio pot where the Output Volume pot is so that I can add the massive volume and attack back in.

Do a search on the Dual Caliber forum for a thread called, "DC Mods That Are Easy to Do."
Elvis said.......
Amp techs do get shocked. :shock:

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jargapix
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by jargapix » Thu Jan 30, 2014 12:50 am

I'm gonna try both he 0 settings start and do a search for the DC mods. It what I have found to work great is the Jettenuator by Soldano. That little box lets me play in my home office with the family sleeping with the master and mains set to 5-4. I get nice clean headroom and great preamp crunch without blowing up my spot. I don't see a gigantic loss of tone at all but that's just me.
JA

rjgjr68
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by rjgjr68 » Mon Mar 24, 2014 2:53 pm

I'm very curious about he "0" settings...onna try this tonight!
Thanks for the sugestion. :D sixveesix

BlackBoxy
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Re: Want different tone & less volume out of my DC5

Post by BlackBoxy » Thu Mar 27, 2014 4:52 am

removing the "boom" resistor behind the Volume pot would "linearize" the taper of your dc5

Monsta released lot of "mods" about dc5..

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