Wet/Dry & Wet/Dry/Wet
You’ve probably seen or heard these terms a million times, but may not know exactly what it means or how to set it up properly.
Wet/Dry is when you send 2 different signals to 2 different amplifiers. The Dry signal - consisting of gain pedals - is sent to one amplifier. The Wet signal - consisting of modulation, delay, or reverb pedals - is sent to another amplifier. The idea is that wet effects tend to remove definition from the signal, resulting in a “muddy” or “washed out” sound. By splitting the signal, your wet and dry signal can maintain its integrity.
In a Wet/Dry setup, there is a split in the signal, after the gain section, that feeds the dry signal to one amplifier. After the split, the wet signal begins and feeds into another amplifier. A simple A/B/Y splitter will do. Keep in mind… any pedal that comes BEFORE the signal split will be fed to both amplifiers. Any pedals AFTER the signal split will only be fed to the wet amplifier. The same is true for Wet/Dry/Wet.
Wet/Dry/Wet is the same concept, but utilizes stereo wet effects and 3 amplifiers. The Dry signal is sent to one amplifier. The Wet signal is split into stereo and sent to 2 amplifiers (left & right). The set up is the same as Wet/Dry, but the wet effects are outputted in stereo. So, the amplifier setup is Wet (left), Dry (center), and Wet (right).
You might be asking… How do I choose which effects are wet and which are dry? Dry effects consist of compressors, overdrives, distortions, fuzzes, and filters. Wet effects consist of modulation, delay, and reverb. However, some modulation pedals may sound better in the dry signal.
These are in no way set rules that need to be followed. Experiment with your pedals and see what works best for you!