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Old 12.03.05, 6:45 PM
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Question Running pedals at 12v instead of 9v?

Can this safely be done?
I tried running my Arion SAD-3 at 12v and it actually sounds good.

I read somewhere that some older boss pedals such as the CE-2 need 12v to give full chorus power. Would it be safe to do this?
My CE-2 always sounds (on 9v) like it's just not powerful enough. Like it is teedering underneath the signal almost.
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Old 12.03.05, 8:11 PM
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I think that'd be fine to do, I've read heaps of places that that's what some pedals NEED to run properly. I think back in the (insert decade name here)'s the idea was to run them off a 12v supply, but because 9v batteries were more available...well, you know the rest.

Do a bit of reading up on it. Here's something I found though:

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Originally found at http://www.musictoyz.com/gearhead/gear13.php

Also, be aware that not all pedals use 9v - some Boss pedals actually want 12v on the adapter input, even though they use 9v batteries. If your Boss says "ACA" on the bottom plate (instead of the more common "PSA"), and it's manufactured before august 1997, it needs a 12v unregulated (ACA) source. If it's manufactured after that date, it will work with 9 volts, but it prefers it to be unregulated.
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Old 12.03.05, 8:58 PM
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Older-school pedals, like the MXR dyna-comp, actually sound best with cheapo heavy-duty batteries that have faded a bit. A buddy said he heard the same thing for fuzz/distortion effects, but I have only read such things regarding the dyna comp. In general, you should use 9V heavy-duty (not alkaline) batteries.

power supplies add noise to your chain, as does using too many pedals.
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Old 12.03.05, 9:26 PM
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my one spot is dead silent and i use an fz7 into a deathmetal... all of my distortions have sounded brighter and slightly louder with 12 instead of 9 volts... myt digital pedals (synthwah, rp50) do weird glithcing stuff with under nine volts, distortions get fuzzy and the fidelity is lowered with under 9 volts...

my cf7 needs 9v to work right, otherwise, its thin and almost not there...
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Old 12.04.05, 7:55 AM
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It depends on a lot of things but the main issues are the caps: caps are rated at some voltage; cross that line and it will explode (yes, it will!).

Second, some digital pedals are not that good when fed higher voltages and therefor have some kind of protection installed (simple 9V converter) that sets up to 30V in 9V. One problem: it will get hot and can burn pedals.

A bigger voltage has two distinct effects on pedals:
- Transistors will be less starved (a way to make transistors sound good is to feed them little voltage, thus starve them) and by this the sound will be clearer, less distort, overdriven of fuzzed. Giving the transistor it's desired voltage will total kill any distortion / OD / fuzz, but that is up to 30V for some.......

- Op-amps will sound louder and less distort. An opamp has a normal working voltage of around 25V and works best with this voltage (as in amplifies more and distort less). By giving them less voltage they work, but not as good as they should at 25V: they amplify less and kind of distort (artefacts happen at those voltages).

One good example: the Fulldrive II; this unit is based upon the 4558 opamp (with some clipping diodes in it's feedback path). When the voltage is adjusted to 18V the opamp will work better thus give you more volume with less distortion at the low drive settings (less signal goes thru the diodes).
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Old 12.04.05, 2:57 PM
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so older aca boss pedals can run off 12v? that's good to know.

Boss DF-2 ACA
Boss CE-2 ACA
Boss PH-1r ACA

So theroetically these pedals should safely run off of 12v?
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