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5 DIY Mods to Perfect Your Ibanez TS9 and Boss SD-1

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5 DIY Mods to Perfect Your Ibanez TS9 and Boss SD-1

Mod 4: Make Your TS9 or SD-1 More Transparent

Tools and Parts for This Mod
• 1k Ω 1/4-watt resistor (one for a TS9, two for an SD-1)
• A1k Ω audio potentiometer
• .22 μF capacitor
• 2.2 μF electrolytic capacitor
• 1" piece of jumper wire
• Two 3" pieces of wire
• Pot knob for the new pot

Have you ever noticed how, when you turn your TS9’s or SD-1’s tone knob up, it sounds like the pedal is boosting frequencies? That’s because it is. Both pedals have an active tone control. Some players like that, but others prefer a passive tone control. This mod shows you how to install a passive tone control to make your Tube Screamer or Super Overdrive sound much more transparent.


Fig. 6: Schematic for the TS9 and SD-1 transparency mod.

The steps for installing a passive tone control are pretty much the same for a Tube Screamer and a Super Overdrive (see Fig. 6 for a reference schematic), so we’ll cover both together here and note any divergences within the appropriate step.


Photo 13 (left): Remove the indicated wires and components in your TS9. Photo 14 (right): Remove the indicated wires and components in your SD-1.

1. For a TS9: Remove wires 6, 7, and 8, as well as components R11 and C9 (see Photo 13).
For an SD-1: Remove wires 5, 8, and 11, as well as components C5 and R8 (see Photo 14).

2. Remove the old 20k Ω tone pot.

3. TS9: Attach a 3" wire from lug 2 of your new A1k Ω pot to the hole where wire 7 used to connect to the circuit board.
SD-1: Remove R7 and replace it with a 1k Ω resistor. Then solder one end of a 3" wire to lug 2 of your new A1k Ω pot, and solder the other end where wire 5 used to connect to the circuit board.


Photo 15 (left): Connect a 3" wire from the new tone pot to hole 7 on your TS9’s circuit board. Photo 16 (right): Solder one leg of the .22 µF cap to lug 1 of the tone pot, then attach a 3" wire to the other leg.

4. TS9: Remove C5.
SD-1: Remove C4.

5. Stick one leg of your new .22 μF capacitor through lug 1 of your new pot and solder it in place. Attach another 3" wire to the open leg of the cap (see Photo 16). Note: When making a connection like this, I suggest stripping a little extra off of the wire and wrapping it around the cap’s leg before soldering it. It’s also a good idea to put electrical tape or heat-shrink wrap around bare spots such as this one.

6. TS9: Solder the other end of the 3" wire into the negative hole where C5 used to be (the negative hole is the one that’s not next to the plus sign). See Photo 17.
SD-1: Solder the other end of the 3" wire to the sleeve lug of the output jack. See Photo 18


Photo 17 (left): Solder the other end of the 3" wire to the negative hole vacated by C5 in your TS9. Photo 18 (right): Solder the other end of the 3" wire to the sleeve lug of you SD-1’s output jack.

7. TS9: Attach the 1" piece of wire from where wire 6 used to be to the hole where wire 8 used to be.
SD-1: Attach the 1" piece of wire from where wire 8 used to be to the hole where wire 11 used to be. See Photo 19.


Photo 19: (left): Jumper holes 8 and 11 on your SD-1 circuit board. Photo 20 (right): Install the 1k Ω resistor and 2.2 µF cap in your Tube Screamer.

8. TS9: Solder your new 1k Ω resistor where C9 used to be and place your 2.2 μf electrolytic capacitor where R11 used to be (see Photo 20).


Photo 21: Install the 1k Ω resistor and 2.2 µF cap in your Super Overdrive.

Note: Make sure the negative side of your electrolytic capacitor is closest to your Tube Screamer’s IC chip, and that the positive side is closest to the 1k Ω resistor you just installed. The negative side is usually signified by a stripe on the cap, and the positive side is almost always the long leg.

SD-1: Solder your 1k Ω resistor where C5 used to be and your 2.2 μF electrolytic capacitor where R8 used to be. Note: Make sure the capacitor’s negative side (the short leg or the short leg near the stripe on the cap) is in the hole closest to the edge of the circuit board, and the positive side (the long leg) is closest to the newly placed 1k Ω resistor.
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