Peter Thorn on TC Electronic Nova System


I’m Uffe from TC and and I’m here with Pete Thorn to talk
a little bit about the Nova System, that you are using. Do you want to share a little bit of your thoughts on that and how you use it? Yes! I got one when the unit came out and
right away I took it to japan to use on a one off gig with a guy named Daniel Powter, that I play with sometimes. So it’s a great unit for things like
that because it’s so small and compact and has great sounds in it. So I had this
pedal board bill with nova system and a couple other things on it. And you know you can throw it in your suitcase
or whatever. I had a little road case made for a head and for the Nova and you can just
drop the nova and a head right in there and few cables. And what you got in there is your sounds and when you get to the gig you got it – without a bunch and cabels and pedals. So it’s pretty cool! That was my thinking: that I
would use it on my fly dates, you know, if I had to go somewhere and do a one off like a television show or something out of town I could take it. rather than bring the full on rig with all kinds of pedals and heads and stuff like that. So lets have a look at it. Yes this is my little baby board right here um… so basically what I’ve got here
is a nova system that’s a volume and a wah in one pedal… so you know it’s the same as having both. And then I’ve got just like on my G-system
system an A/B box The A side goes
through the electric rig through the Nova System, amp and stuff and if I hit the pedal it
will go out a DI for acoustic guitar and I can use the same board for acoustic guitar. I’ve got a tuner on there as well. The Nova has a good tuner in it
more for ahÉto have it and peace of mind and then it
also mutes the whole thing which is a nice thing. I can use my
acoustic as well with that, you know so I thought I’d just throw a regular tuner on there as well for the heck of it. So that’s
pretty much my thinking on the unit.The way a lot of guys use it that, you know, there’s two ways you can use the unit. It has its own internal drive sounds – overdrives and distortions. uh… and of course if you’re going
to use those and you’re gonna run it in front of an amplifier set probably cleaned with a medium gain or something like
that. There’s another way you can use
it, which is in the loop of an amplifier, like the effects
loop of your favorite amp, but when you do that you are not going to be able to use the
the drive portion of the Nova System. so of course you’re gonna run drives in front of
the amp. Do you use the boost as well to push your
amp a little bit harder? Generally my thinking is
that you set your drive up for a nice overdrive so you hit the boost
for solos and the parts you want to stand out more. So the amplifier I’m using right
now it my PT100 head and I’m using just the clean channel set
quite clean. So it’s kinda like a twin reverb
type sound. You could probably get that type of sound out of a lot of
different amps if you’re renting an amp on a fly date or something. So I’m thinking – set the amp up a kind of clean
and use the Nova for your drive sounds and what not. so ok the Nova is switched out of line
right now uh… so I can step through a few
different sounds This is the overdrive portion of the Nova
which to me is sort of ‘tubescreamer-esque’ So if you’ve got an amp set clean .. it’s very warm and very analog sounding. It IS analog! That’s why it is analog sounding because it is analog!! But it sounds great you know and then
you can switch in the boost on top of that É with the added gain on top of there. Off course there’s compression in the unit too There you have the compressor. It’s cool for clean parts of fretting with sustain on the
dry sound Éfor a smooth sound The Nova has got a full complement of delays like
analog tape um… ducking delays, all kinds of… TC is of course known for their delay
and modulation effects That sounds like an analog echo you’ve got goingÉ The modulation section has got tremolo and
flange Nice tremolo Reverb off course Okay it doesn’t have a dedicated
leslie speaker simulator but using a fast chorus and maybe a bit of EQ you get a really great É organic sound that’s pretty dead on. Really nice leslie sounds, so I came up with that patch Okay so this is an overdrive I came up
with a little more gain than the one on the other preset. Still it’s using the drive… É with a bit of delay there too so that’s the
overdrive, not the distortion effect. This is a distortion You know, just a little bit harder
sounding distortion and you know, not quite as smooth but a little
more edgy more for soloing. This kind of sounded like a Marshall JCM800 so I called it JCM800 It’s a nice Marshall sound. The effecs are really pristine Tc makes really pristine effectsÉ (laughs) The Edge kind of delay with dotted eight notes. The trails are kind of pristine like the Edge’s sound. This next sound I did: I do lot of volume swells Switching in here and there is an analog echo and then the vibrato as well in the modulation section Nice for ambience Yes it’s really warm Thats it. Thats how I use it basically .. just
rent your favorite amp if you are on a fly date or whatever or your favorite kind of readily available
amp: twin or whatever, even like a Marshall set clean and then run this in front and get your drives in and all your effects out of it. You know, it works great! Fantastic! So thats how I’m using Nova. Thanks for sharing and for having us!

100 thoughts on “Peter Thorn on TC Electronic Nova System

  1. @ilovelamp456 I've been using the Nova system as one of my fly rigs for about a year now. It took me awhile to really get the overdrive/distortion shaped right. Depending on the gig I'll use either a Fender blues jr. or a Twin reverb. To get the "umph" (depending on the style of music) it was a great eq and 3 different compressor. It also goes great as a stand alone effects unit if you're tuned in to your amps distortion…..

  2. @slavexg In pedal mode all footswitches act as effects on/off switches (+Tap tempo). Pretty much as a you would use eight regular stomp box pedals. However, it is still possible to change both preset banks and presets when in this mode.

  3. Hi TC,
    Can the Nova Drive do that JCM800-like distortion sound, too, or its distortion channel is different?

  4. @HoTpAnTs411 yes you can dial in a JCM800-ish higain type of sound as NOVA System's overdrive emulates the classic overdrive originally only found in tube amps.

  5. I have a problem in that I like my Flanger, Chorus and Phasor in FRONT of the amp but my Reverb and Delay in the FX loop. This is a pretty common way that guitarists will position these effects. The Nova System will not support this. Isn't that strange? Shame they didn't allow the 4-cable method like the Boss GT-8. So I have to compromise. Either all effects up front with inferior time-based effects. Or all fx in loop with inferior Modulation effects (plus no analogue drives from the unit)

  6. The reason Peter has a Boss Tuner is because THE INTERNAL TUNER IS NOT CHROMATIC! Found this out today when I bought one. I guess TC didn't want that mentioned in their video. Seriously, how can you make a multi effects that sounds this good and only include a six-note guitar tuner? Have the Danish not yet discovered drop D tuning?

  7. @sodchild It's chromatic for sure. What it doesn't mention is that it won't hear notes lower than D. I found that out on my first gig with it when I needed to tune to C. Blanked right out.

  8. @indagdnm True, I misspoke. I found out the same way though at my first rehearsal with it. I can get it to read a low D on occasion, but anything lower will blank out.

    What makes no sense is that their $4 ipod app can tune anything from a sitar to a grand piano. Would it really be that hard to integrate this, or just make a software update?

  9. HAVE to put drives in front of an amp? says who? & THIS guy is supposed to be the face of the "pro" session guitarist? has ever tried it? i have ALL of my drives at this point (i do always audition both, 1st), INCLUDING my minibone fuzz, in the loop of my sig;x, & they sound GLORIOUS there, actually becoming add'l preamp choices. i have a redplate d'lator in the loop, w/all peds in it (w/fx after); it's all about gainstaging, as any pro who's worked in the best studios in the world would know…

  10. @badmuddy it brings the gain peds to a whole other level, sonically, & as long as you stay within unity output levels with your peds, it's perfectly safe. i have a gate following all gain devices, & all of my mod, delay, verb, et al, come afterwards, in the loop. i run the siggie's loop in series. i will eventually add a para loop/mixer type solution for the fx i want to "mix" in with the dry sig & series peds. it's quite a massive sound…

  11. i have a question.i think the nova's sounds are great,the drive section is superb,but the key is the eq.without it you cannot get the sounds you want,with it you can play everything you desire.but here is the thing.if you turn on the cab simulation,it applies on every output,and the eq turns automatically off!!!!major problem!!!!.
    the result is that if i am playing straight to the mixer i cannot equalize my sounds differently,i can only act on them throught the p.a.would a DI work?

  12. Sounds good, if the Nova system 2 has a looper and an auto filter I'll be getting one. If they ever do a Nova sustem 2 that is…..

  13. Hi I have a New System and need to buy a wha pedal and expression. What pedal do you think appropriate? You can control effects such as volume and wham a Cry Baby? Thanks for answer.

  14. does anyone know what kind of power supply peter thorn is using beneath his boss tuner? it doesnt look like a voodoo, just curious

  15. The key to getting the max out of this unit, is I believe, running it in front of a really high quality tube amp. I play in a cover band and will soon unload a bunch of rack-based shit for this thing to minimize setup time. Nice piece by TC and Thorn.

  16. Really a matter of taste? – I think it's got some pretty potent drive in there – maybe try it out fer yourself?

  17. It comes with a build in power supply and cable. – Any additional cables you'll need to provide yourself 🙂

  18. Sorry to hear that – Almost all of our Nova System customers are very happy with their purchase (you're actually the first I've head of with those concerns, and I've been here a little more than a year) so, it might have been a bad unit?
    And out of curiosity – what amp and guitar(s) are you using it with?

  19. Thanks a bunch for elaborating, I see your point. I hope our Flashback or one of the Nova pedal delays will satisfy your needs. 🙂
    And the Eventide is undoubtedly a great reverb pedal.
    – Thanks again.

  20. I doubt there will be new limited ones just yet.. have you thought about buying one though Amazon, Ebay (lots of new deals) or DV247?

  21. WTF, why don't they have a seperate output from the overdrive/compression/distortion? That way you could run the drives into the front end of the amp and then the modulations/delays/reverbs through the loop of your amp. Seems like a pretty major oversight. I am buying one anyway.

  22. I'd say get your amp on a light to medium gain, then experiment on the drives. You always have boost to get that extra edge on Friedman and Hammett solos if you're lead type of guy. At the end of the day, it depends on your amp and pickups. I saving for both a Marshall JVM and possibly a Nova System.

    I made the mistake in buying a whole bunch of pedals, shitty Line 6 digital effects, and a VOX AC15. The VOX was very good, but it didn't have the sound I was going for.

  23. you can still tune to drop D, I tune my guitars to D with it, it's only if you wanna tune to E flat or C sharp that is a problem.

  24. Hey TCelectronic, I just bought a nova system for the modulation, reverb and delays to add i it into my pedalboard but i am not sure what is the best way to connect the nova. I mean is it better at the beginning or at the end of the chain.

    Hope you can assist.

  25. By the way you can tune the low D in drop-D by using the 12th fret harmonics.
    Coincidentally, the tuning will be more precise this way 🙂

  26. I suppose I could tune to a nearby piano as well, or maybe someone who was really good at singing "D"s. Thank you sir, but not really the point I was trying to make last year.

  27. I got your point and totally agree the lack of the chromatic tuner is a bad surprise.

    You probably haven't gotten my point though. Sorry if I wasn't clear enough.
    I've suggested you to pluck your guitar's 12th fret harmonic on the 6th string instead of the open string. The Nova's tuner will just treat the harmonic as an open 4th string. And tuning by 12th harmonic rather than open strings usually produces better results in my experience.

  28. Anyway to find out where that road case was made? Would love to get one just like that for my rig and for traveling

  29. Hi TC Electronics, I have a nova system effects unit and i would like to add it to my current Pedalboard. I really like the overdrive section of the Nova so i was wondering what do you recommend. Is it better to place the nova at the end or at the beginning of the chain? I will be waiting for your response. Thanks,

  30. Hello!
    I have a question – is it true bypass, when turned off?
    I'd like to use it with my valve distortion, so I 'm concerned if it will eat up its sound.
    Thanks!

  31. Hello! My Nova System is freeze, once I connect it to the power it doesn't start, it only says: Nova System TC ELECTRONIC. Please help me, I already updated the latest version and it didn't work. I didn't use it for about 4 months. Everything was perfect and suddenly it just doesn't work. I Hope you can help me. Thank you!

  32. Eeeee. I have no idea what you've been up to. But my NOVA got chromatic tuner. Just as accurate as the POLYTune – if not more accurate.
    I can drop D tune, open chord tune. I can do what ever I wanna do,a s long as I remember what I did and where..

  33. Great video, this looks like an ideal setup. Does your Mister Crybaby Super pedal have a true bypass mod on it???

  34. Use it in the loop even though the modulations sound better in front of the amp, the delays will be super warm, and organic sounding through the loop.

  35. @James Whitehouse

    He said he uses a fast chorus. I'd say do a fast and fairly dominant chorus and then you should be able to feel it out from there.

  36. I wish this thing had an out+input between the distortion and the rest of the effects. That would make it the smallest 4CM setup with higher quallity tone than almost anything else in that range.

  37. I'm not sure whether Peter is being honest here. According to several user reviews, the tuner in the Nova System doesn't work below standard E tuning

  38. That interviewer does sound like a dutch dude.. These Shur guitars do sound superb and probably play like a dream. A few months ago I never heared of Pete Thorn but this guy know his stuff and is a master guitarist… cool and friendly dude too.. I guess.

  39. God damn. Pete Thorn can sell anything. On an unrelated note, does anyone else think Pete Thorn looks like a younger Thomas Newman.. Or is it the double IPA I'm drinking…?

  40. which the power consumption of the new system? ma how it consumes if I turn into a source that powers other pedals?

  41. I have used this in PEDAL MODE lots of times live through front end of Vox AC15 single channel – I stay away from delay into front end for obvious reasons. The unit is really nice and quiet. Nice reverb / modulation. Fantastic Compressor that you can set as a great solo boost on drive channel
    negative points…the tuner…limited, plus shares tap tempo button so if you not careful can reset your delay time…not good.

  42. Pete, can you explain how to use the NOVA system with 2 guitars, one being an ACOUSTIC please? I want to play electric and acoustic but my acoustic needs to go through a D.I. Box. I heard you mention using an A/B box for your acoustic but I need to ask for clarification please. I need Electric guitar to go into NOVA….simple enough. But I need acoustic to go into NOVA and to a D.I. box and the D.I. to the mixing board. best set up for NOVA in your opinion??
    If you can answer thank you. I know you might not even see this question.

  43. I've never really had pedals before, just used what's on my amp so I'm a bit clueless about the 'front of amp', 'effects loop' thing. I have heard that modulation stuff goes through the loop and the distortion etc through the front. Isn't this a problem with this unit? Should I just get a few pedals instead? I only really need a delay, flanger, chorus setup I guess but it'd be nice to have all the options on this type of unit.

  44. Kind of sorry I sold mine but darned if I could get it to program & my drive didn't sound like this. Loved all the other effects. It's ok though. I rebuilt it with all indy TC pedals. Only cost me a few hundred more LOL. Pete's always a good watch.

  45. Mine kind of sucks. Really unreliable. I have to reset it constantly by unplugging. Tuner does not function. Hard to program and instruction book sucks. Bought new and disappointed. Look elsewhere.

  46. I wish they would of had a separate out put for the comp/drive to go in front of an amp, The rest of the fx could go to the fx loop. It would have been more useful. I want to hear the fx in stereo.

  47. Not impressed with the od/distortion but, tc is not famous for that. You noticed pete spent most of the time on clean settings. If you can find one of these for less than $200, its cheaper than buying a bunch of pedals, you’ll just have to add a dirt box and a wah.

  48. I want to know the brand and model of the wah-volume pedal. I really need a pedal like that. Or someone has any other recomendation? (Not Morleys)

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