Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer (Reissue)

TS9

What is it?
Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer Reissue, made in japan. According to my guess on the serial, this is probably made in 2008. Got it used but in fair condition.

This must be one of the pedals with most information written. Sad thing that the reissues aren’t getting as much attention. No one seems to care about dating back the serials on these. Oh well. Teared mine open, and the box is exactly like the original 9-series boxes from the early 80s. The bottom insulation is better and non-removable though. The sight that welcomed me was like meh. Modern looking traces on modern thickness board. Not the acidy cool traces, nor the thick board that spreads confidence. All three of my Soundtank TS5s has thicker board than this specimen.

TS9-guts2

Components are close to the original, which makes this function like the older units. This specimen even has the JRC4558D chip in it. Not sure if there really is an audible difference between 4558 and TA75558. I’ve modded couple units before and tried both on with a DIP8 socket. Slipping in to heresy section, i personally believe that NE5532 is the best suited chip for this circuit.

Once again, refer to GEOfex article for more information on the circuit itself.

TS9-guts1

This one will surely get modded if i come across another unit for reasonable trade or price. Designwise this reissue is really nice pedal. Soundwise…

We could have a debate on if this design gets better with true bypass. My personal view is no. True bypassing buffered effects with electronic switching should only be done when there is something very wrong with buffering or there’s too low input impedance which leads to pickup loading and therefore oscillation. Hype of true bypass just isn’t worth it. I’ll talk more about this issue at some point. Maybe on some Colorless writings chapter…

How does it sound?
Well. What can i say? The cold dead hands slaps you on the top of your head. Unless. You have super sucky pickups. Then this puppy rocks. Sounds exactly as it should. Mid-honkin, bass-strippin medium overdrive with medium output. For live situation to get your mids heard over everything else. Not for anything else. A classic one trick pony. Prime suspect for modding the inverting input for more bass and gain.

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