xact tone solutions

Rig Rundown: Derek Wells

PG’s John Bohlinger joins Derek Wells in the studio to check out the decorated Nashville hit-maker’s recording rig, which includes a custom-built pedalboard and a six-pack of tube amps.

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A touch-sensitive overdrive that can go from light dirt to wooly distortion.

Nashville, TN (May 27, 2015) -- XAct Tone Solutions is proud to announce the release of their new Winford Drive, one of the most versatile guitar effect pedals on the market and now available directly online or through dealers worldwide.

Named for the Nashville street where XAct Tone solves the sonic problems of the world’s top session and touring musicians, the Winford Drive adapts to a multitude of musical situations - from light overdrive on country stages, to big wooly distortion on the hardest rocking gigs. Its unparalleled touch sensitivity and dynamic response let it respond to the player’s style by working closely with playing dynamics and the guitar's volume control. The pedal also allows access to a huge variety of distorted tones via its simple, but powerful controls, making the Winford Drive a versatile, ultra-responsive, and dynamic part of any guitar rig.

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This custom XAct Tone Solutions stereo pedalboard mixer lets you run two stereo effects in parallel with the original dry signal, effectively adding an analog dry path to the outboard effects—which can be helpful if a pedal's dry path isn’t as pristine as you’d like. A “dry kill” function mutes the dry signal present at the mixer output, which is great for reverse delay and some modulation types, and you can also control the send level in real time using a volume pedal.

Greg Walton and Barry O’Neal of the Nashville-based pedal outfit talk about the stompboxes and effect systems they’ve built for Tom Petty, Oz Noy, Keith Urban, and other top players.

If you’re one of the tens of thousands of guitarists who’ve checked out YouTube gear-demo guy Pete Thorn’s terrific video of the XTS Atomic Overdrive pedal, you may be wondering, “Who are these XTS guys?” XTS—short for XAct Tone Solutions—is Greg Walton’s pedal and effect systems company, and the Atomic Overdrive is just one of the stompboxes manufactured under the XTS brand. But XAct Tone Solutions is more than a stompbox company. The pedals evolved as part of the outfit’s larger mission: creating tone solutions for guitarists.

The company’s main office is in Nashville, but founder Walton lives in Houston, where he also works as an environmental consultant. “I was doing pedalboards for players in Houston and Austin, just because I liked to do it,” he recalls. “Back in the ’80s, I built racks for myself. From time to time I would go to L.A. and hang out with Dave Friedman at Rack Systems, trading him labor for knowledge. XAct Tone Solutions started in 2001 with me modifying pedals that weren’t reliable, or just didn’t sound great. I started like Robert Keeley, modifying Tube Screamers and DS-1s to make them sound the best they could.”

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