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As you may have understood by my username I'm a fan of Nirvana, I've been trying to sound like Nirvana with my amp but still haven't got the sound I want with the settings that I've tried... Any ideas on what i should do?

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Bear in mind that the albums are often double tracked and or have things like stereo separation effects that alter the sound from the way the band actually plays a song live. Also, microphones play a bigger role in recorded tone than average people credit.

Cobain was not known for a ton of effects: clearly he used tremolo and phaser/flanger effects on albums but in the following photo, it looks like he is only using boss "DS-2 turbo distortion" and a "Sansamp classic" amp simulator pedal. Pretty simple. It is possible some effects are in a different loop off camera.

Many guitarists simply use a chain of gain. I myself use a compressor, a special wah never off, and then a tube screamer fed into an amp that is up just enough to barely break when the pedals are off.

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  • Tremolo? Where? – user6591 Jan 10 at 18:53
  • I also doubt he used a phaser. – user6591 Jan 10 at 18:55
  • Tremolo - Fender-style vibrato effect on amp. Chorus, phaser, flange and tremolo can all sound very similar especially when used together. Not really important, as many photos only show a very small number of effects. I think in a photo from a well-known live show (easily seen on youtube), there he has a boss bs-2 and a Rat both taped down to the floor, but not sure there was anything else in use. Note I also suggest that the sound engineers may have been responsible for some of the effects in the studio. – Yorik Jan 10 at 19:27
  • The point about recordings sounding different than live is very true. My point was I doubt he ever used tremolo or phaser. Chorus, yes. – user6591 Jan 10 at 19:30

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