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  #1  
Old 11-12-2008, 12:34 PM
The Whale The Whale is offline
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Cmatmods Brownie & GGG BSAIB II... same thing?

Hey all,

I've heard a few clips of the Brownie that just blow my mind and have turned my head towards BSAIB esque pedals. I've also been interested in building a few of my own pedals.... thus the question: Is the Brownie essentially a GGG BSAIB II? In other words, all things being equal, can i expect from a BSAIB II the same sound i hear in the clips for the Brownie?

Thanks,
Mike
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  #2  
Old 11-12-2008, 01:04 PM
Bucksears Bucksears is online now
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I've heard that, yes, the CMATMODS Brownie is a BSIAB II. Apparently, they're licensed to build it; they supposedly even use the GGG boards and are a part-for-part build of the BSIAB II.

More BSIAB II trivia:
- the fabled 'fr8_trane mod' uses lower-gain transistors per fr8_trane's
- the BSIAB II was designed by Ed Guidry, who also designed the original BSIAB; the first one was a bit more compressed and darker than the II.
- the BSIAB/BSIAB II uses 'Minibooster' stages (created by Jack Orman) cascaded as a distortion unit
- the tone control is basically the same as a Big Muff's, but with different part values
- several people (myself included) that the stock BSIAB II is quite dark; the only real mod that I came up with was to remove the two .0022uF caps at the end of the circuit. This opens up the treble a lot, yet you can still roll it off with the tone control.
- other mods are: use lower-gain transistors (slightly lower 2N5457's or even lower MPF102's), use replace the 470pF capacitor with a 560pF (this increases the mids a little and opens the circuit up)
- another mod is to remove both .0022uF caps at the end of the circuit, but replace the first one (C13?) with a .001uF. This still has more treble than the stock BSIAB II, yet is thicker than the 'no .0022uF caps' mod. I like this one for more of a classic rock sound; the 'no caps' mod nails that VH1 tone, IMHO
- do a search on the diystompboxes.com forum for 'BSIAB II mods' - a guy called 'mojotron' has a whole slew of them listed

Hope this helps,
Buck
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  #3  
Old 11-12-2008, 01:34 PM
Clint torrez Clint torrez is offline
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Thumbs up Ggg bsiab

I was on the same boat a few short weeks ago. I was looking to pick up a Brownie to replace my Crunchbox, which just wasn't doing it for me anymore. I scored a GGG BSIAB here in the emporium and I'm done, it was exactly what I was looking for and knocked the CB off my main board.

Now I don't know if it was modded at all, but it kicks ass as is.
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  #4  
Old 11-12-2008, 02:12 PM
The Whale The Whale is offline
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amp choices.

this is very helpful, thanks. one more thing... what amps are you running through with the BSAIB/Brownie? My favorite youtube clip has the brownie run though a Victoria 4x10. I'm currently running a heavily modded traynor bassmaster and i'm wondering if throwing a Plexi-in-a-box pedal in front of a plexi is too much ... plexi, if you can imagine such a thing. And does it stack with the likes of a fuzz or ts-9 if set on a lower gain setting?
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  #5  
Old 11-12-2008, 02:44 PM
Bucksears Bucksears is online now
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I'm currently using a Super Reverb reissue, but I'm in the process of getting things together for a head/2x12 cab by Ted Weber.
The Super has been my best amp yet to use as a clean platform for distortion pedals. I'm not into 'overdriving an already overdriven amp' or 'stacking pedals', so each distortion has a specific use.
I love the BSIAB II for that hot-rodded Marshall sound, which IMHO is different from a simply 'cranked' Marshall. I'm using the BSIAB II for early Van Halen, G'nR style distortion; biting, midrangey high gain. NOTE: I just ordered a Wampler PlexiDrive for those classic lower-gain Marshall/AC-DC tones.
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  #6  
Old 11-12-2008, 08:16 PM
wopr wopr is offline
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I emailed the maker of the Brownie awhile ago, and he responded immediately. I asked him if he could make a custom Brownie with a switch, so I could switch off/on some of the caps. He said it would be no problem, and quoted me a very reasonable price. Haven't bought it yet, but its on my list to buy.
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