Gear Aquisition Syndrome is a serious disorder.... FX etc

Moderators: Slowy, Capt. Black

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BY Darth Sabbathi
#809256
Fuzz is a very subjective thing in my experience. Personally I really like something with a fair amount of spit and a lot of girth - I don't really do the Gilmour tone type of thing. But if that is your bag, I would say a Ram's Head style big muff would be the go. The best one I've tried is the violet Rams Head from Tym Guitars in Australia, but they are hard to get a hold of:

https://tymguitars.com.au/collections/e ... etramshead (all of his Big Muffs are good - I've also tried the reverse and the civil war, but this was my fave)

If you want the versatile muff-with-mids thing, the EQD Hoof is my pick.

As Danny suggests, a fuzz face is a good all round option too. If you want something that is not too woolly, I'd go with a silicon version - BC108 or BC183 transistors. The Skreddy Lunar Module would be excellent if you want something spendy. Solid Gold FX 'If 6 Was 9' is a good option too.

Edit: the other thing I would say, whatever pedal you get, try it with a bunch of different configurations. Fuzz pedals are wildly sensitive to all sorts of factors - the amount of gain, the input level, the kind of pickup, the amp, etc. Particularly gain and input level - try it out with clean vs overdriven amp, and try rolling off your guitar volume. Those things can make a huge difference.
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BY bender
#809304
Darth Sabbathi wrote:Fuzz is a very subjective thing in my experience. Personally I really like something with a fair amount of spit and a lot of girth - I don't really do the Gilmour tone type of thing. But if that is your bag, I would say a Ram's Head style big muff would be the go. The best one I've tried is the violet Rams Head from Tym Guitars in Australia, but they are hard to get a hold of:

https://tymguitars.com.au/collections/e ... etramshead (all of his Big Muffs are good - I've also tried the reverse and the civil war, but this was my fave)

If you want the versatile muff-with-mids thing, the EQD Hoof is my pick.

As Danny suggests, a fuzz face is a good all round option too. If you want something that is not too woolly, I'd go with a silicon version - BC108 or BC183 transistors. The Skreddy Lunar Module would be excellent if you want something spendy. Solid Gold FX 'If 6 Was 9' is a good option too.

Edit: the other thing I would say, whatever pedal you get, try it with a bunch of different configurations. Fuzz pedals are wildly sensitive to all sorts of factors - the amount of gain, the input level, the kind of pickup, the amp, etc. Particularly gain and input level - try it out with clean vs overdriven amp, and try rolling off your guitar volume. Those things can make a huge difference.


I was at Tym guitars on Friday! Great shop!
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BY dayl
#809384
This is what I use. AMazing fuzz pedal and able to be tone shaped a lot. The boost is a great bonus by itself when it isnt mixed up in things. Dial the gain back and it does really nice things to a clean signal :thumbup:

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BY Reg18
#809475
im itching to get another Fuzz on my board and I think A Tonebender build could be in my future!
Fuzz experts here, in short what are the differences between Mk1, 1.5, 2 etc?
I think the MK11 sounds like what most pedal like?
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BY Darth Sabbathi
#809557
Reg18 wrote:im itching to get another Fuzz on my board and I think A Tonebender build could be in my future!
Fuzz experts here, in short what are the differences between Mk1, 1.5, 2 etc?
I think the MK11 sounds like what most pedal like?

Now I can really bore your socks off!

The MkI is a really primitive device - it was based on the Maestro Fuzz Tone (the original fuzz pedal), but the idea was to give it more sustain. They are really spitty and nasty, and you can get gating at certain attack level settings. Good ones have a lot of heft to the tone. These are my personal favourite - they've had a bit of a renaissance in the boutique era. In my experience you have to roll your guitar volume off to get the best out of them - with humbuckers, they just totally flub out at full. Mick Ronson is the classic reference.

The 1.5 is basically the same as a Fuzz Face - there is debate as to which came first. There are a few component differences, but both have two transistors (most Tone Benders have three). There is also the Vox Tone Bender, which is a variant of the 1.5 - they tend to be a bit more trebly. Think Robbie Krieger or Ron Asheton (Stooges).

The MkII is the early Led Zep sound. This, a telecaster and a Supro amp = Communication Breakdown. Lots of people dig them, but not my bag. Very vintage sounding, but better behaved than the MkI.

MkIIIs and MkIVs are very similar to each other, and have a fuller, smoother sound than the MkII, but still with a fair amount of grit. Unlike earlier models, they actually have a tone control. They can get very bitey and thin sounding at the top end of the tone - unpleasantly so in my book - but they sound great from 12 o'clock through to full (they usually go treble to bass clockwise). I like these a lot, second only to MkIs. The Burns Buzzaround and Elka Dizzy Tone are close relatives, and are both bad-ass devices. Jimmy Page used a MkIII on later Zep recordings (from around 1970 I think?). Robert Fripp is closely associated with the Buzzaround.

After the MkIV you have the Supa Tone Bender and Jumbo Tone Bender - but these are both much closer to the Big Muff than other Tone Benders (they're based on that circuit).

Hope that helps. Tone Benders rule. You should definitely try one! If you're looking for a really good one at a fair price, I highly recommend Super Electric - you can find them on Reverb. Made by a guy in Ireland named Jimmy Behan. From the more mass produced end, Basic Audio do a good MkIII (Scarab) and MkI (Marq One). Magnetic Effects (guy from The Datsuns) does a MkII (Solar Bender). There have been a couple of Klinger pedals listed on Trade Me recently - they are well regarded (made in Australia). There is also a 65 Amps Color Bender (MkII) currently on TM, which would probably be good. The current DAM built ones from Macaris are brilliant, but insanely expensive. At all costs avoid the British Pedal Company/JMI (same company, different names)...
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BY Reg18
#809562
Darth Sabbathi wrote:
Reg18 wrote:im itching to get another Fuzz on my board and I think A Tonebender build could be in my future!
Fuzz experts here, in short what are the differences between Mk1, 1.5, 2 etc?
I think the MK11 sounds like what most pedal like?

Now I can really bore your socks off!

The MkI is a really primitive device - it was based on the Maestro Fuzz Tone (the original fuzz pedal), but the idea was to give it more sustain. They are really spitty and nasty, and you can get gating at certain attack level settings. Good ones have a lot of heft to the tone. These are my personal favourite - they've had a bit of a renaissance in the boutique era. In my experience you have to roll your guitar volume off to get the best out of them - with humbuckers, they just totally flub out at full. Mick Ronson is the classic reference.

The 1.5 is basically the same as a Fuzz Face - there is debate as to which came first. There are a few component differences, but both have two transistors (most Tone Benders have three). There is also the Vox Tone Bender, which is a variant of the 1.5 - they tend to be a bit more trebly. Think Robbie Krieger or Ron Asheton (Stooges).

The MkII is the early Led Zep sound. This, a telecaster and a Supro amp = Communication Breakdown. Lots of people dig them, but not my bag. Very vintage sounding, but better behaved than the MkI.

MkIIIs and MkIVs are very similar to each other, and have a fuller, smoother sound than the MkII, but still with a fair amount of grit. Unlike earlier models, they actually have a tone control. They can get very bitey and thin sounding at the top end of the tone - unpleasantly so in my book - but they sound great from 12 o'clock through to full (they usually go treble to bass clockwise). I like these a lot, second only to MkIs. The Burns Buzzaround and Elka Dizzy Tone are close relatives, and are both bad-ass devices. Jimmy Page used a MkIII on later Zep recordings (from around 1970 I think?). Robert Fripp is closely associated with the Buzzaround.

After the MkIV you have the Supa Tone Bender and Jumbo Tone Bender - but these are both much closer to the Big Muff than other Tone Benders (they're based on that circuit).

Hope that helps. Tone Benders rule. You should definitely try one! If you're looking for a really good one at a fair price, I highly recommend Super Electric - you can find them on Reverb. Made by a guy in Ireland named Jimmy Behan. From the more mass produced end, Basic Audio do a good MkIII (Scarab) and MkI (Marq One). Magnetic Effects (guy from The Datsuns) does a MkII (Solar Bender). There have been a couple of Klinger pedals listed on Trade Me recently - they are well regarded (made in Australia). There is also a 65 Amps Color Bender (MkII) currently on TM, which would probably be good. The current DAM built ones from Macaris are brilliant, but insanely expensive. At all costs avoid the British Pedal Company/JMI (same company, different names)...


This is great reading! In listening to some demos online the MK1 is more responsive but has a little less bass?
MK11 seems to be a bit thicker but at the cost of dynamics?
Are the model of Germanium Transisters crucial to the sound?
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BY Darth Sabbathi
#809569
MkIs vary a lot - the good ones (at least, the ones I like) have a decent amount of girth. And yes, MkIIs are less responsive - they can get woolly too. MkIs cut better in my experience.

The transistors probably don't make as much difference as fuzz fanatics believe - the skill of the builder and the way they tune the pedal has more impact. They do have different characteristics, but its subjective as to what is best - lots of people love OC81D transistors, but I didn't find them particularly inspiring in the two pedals I had with them, and on the whole I'd say I prefer OC75s. Anything Mullard or NKT is usually a good bet - but it takes someone with some skill and experience to select the good ones.
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BY jeremyb
#809607
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BY chur
#809624
Anyone used the fuzz options in the Katana? I haven't myself and have never owned a discrete fuzz pedal, but curious if they approximate the real deal?
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BY Darth Sabbathi
#809683
bender wrote:How does my Super Electric Dizzy Tone fit into that?

It is in the MkIII family, based on the Elka Dizzy Tone. The Baldwin-Burns Buzzaround is rumoured to have been created by the inventor of the Tone Bender, Gary Hurst. According to the rumour, the design then got appropriated by Sola Sound and turned into the MkIII, by which time it had been refined with the addition of the tone control. I don't know exactly where the Dizzy Tone fits in the history, but they were made in Italy around 1967, and have basically the same circuit as the Buzzaround with slightly different component values. Both pedals have kind of weird controls - Sustain (fuzz level), Balance (a bias control for the Q3 transistor) and Timbre (which I think is basically a high pass filter).

You still thinking of selling that?
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BY bender
#809685
Darth Sabbathi wrote:
bender wrote:How does my Super Electric Dizzy Tone fit into that?

It is in the MkIII family, based on the Elka Dizzy Tone. The Baldwin-Burns Buzzaround is rumoured to have been created by the inventor of the Tone Bender, Gary Hurst. According to the rumour, the design then got appropriated by Sola Sound and turned into the MkIII, by which time it had been refined with the addition of the tone control. I don't know exactly where the Dizzy Tone fits in the history, but they were made in Italy around 1967, and have basically the same circuit as the Buzzaround with slightly different component values. Both pedals have kind of weird controls - Sustain (fuzz level), Balance (a bias control for the Q3 transistor) and Timbre (which I think is basically a high pass filter).

You still thinking of selling that?


Thinking about it- I’m very happy with my silverpistol Orion
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BY Reg18
#810092
Ok so all this fuzz talk and having some birthday cash floating around, has resulted in me commissioning this pedal!
Zeppelin inspired tones with a blues breaker on one side running at 18v via a charge pump with an added bass control, and a Mk2 Germanium Tone Bender on the other side. Will be a toggle to switch the order of which comes first too!

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