Basic Audio - Gnarly, Wildcat or Spooky Tooth?


Or Scarab, or Zippy? :)

Right now I am rocking one od (Bearfoot hbod) and three fuzzes (PTD Bone Machine Ge/Si, Tornita! KS and a MA Harmonic Dominator (percolator clone). They all give me something different, and I love them all.

On to Basic Audio: I need moar fuzz! I don't much like Muffs, and I have the fuzz face type down, so I am looking for something interesting!

I am drawn mostly to the three in the title, though the Scarab sounds very powerful.

LP Studio and Strat (hopefully Tele soon) through a low powered home amp (Reason Bambino) running with some light crunch.

What say you?


Gold Supporting Member
I've played the Gnarly, Zippy, and the Scarab, they are fantastic. Gnarly is my favorite.


I know karate. Voodoo, too.
I, too, have the PTD Bone Machine Ge/Si fuzz and it has become my primary dirt pedal. Not just fuzz pedal ... dirt pedal. It covers SO much ground --- so much so that I had to order an Uberbone version so I could access more than one sound a bit more easily. Pretty much all of my other fuzzes have been rendered useless or redundant (and this includes fuzzes that I really loved by killer builders like Skreddy and Earthquaker).

However, one builder that has managed to survive the purge mostly intact is Basic Audio. I did sell my Zippy since I was able to get a lot of what I used that for out of the PTD, but the Scarab Deluxe, Tri/Ram Muff, and Ibanez Standard clone have remained.

Each of those offers something that I can't get out of the PTD, and I bring each one into the rotation pretty regularly. I've pretty much stopped looking at fuzz pedals these days, but if I were to grab one more, it would be the Spooky Tooth. Check out justnick's demo of it:

That thing is capable of some righteous ugliness and I love it! I'd recommend the Spooky or the Scarab. Or, perhaps even better, I'd recommend dropping John at Basic Audio an email and tell him what you've got covered and what you're looking for.

Edit: I also play an LP (and a tele) into a low powered amp (Fargen Mini Plex Mk2) usually with light to medium crunch.


Silver Supporting Member
I have, alas, only one Basic Audio fuzz as of yet, and that is the Gnarly. It is the most lush and harmonic fuzz I've ever played, and I've been thru a few. I cannot say it's the one for you, or that it's better than any of John's other fuzz's, but it's a hell of a place to start!
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Between the Gnarly and the Spooky, which one has the quietest background noise?

Ive had the Gnarly and sold it because it was quite noisy.

Id like to get something for a cool 60's spitty velcro thing that works well with a wah.


Just write to John Lyons and tell him what you have and what you're hunting for (i.e., "something different from these three"). There's probably nothing you can get from him that would be a disappointment, but he also would be able to help you pick the most non-redundant sound for you. Especially because there are some things he builds that aren't listed on the website. :)

I will point out, though, that none of the fuzzes you have are fuzz faces or fuzz face derivatives. ;)


They are all awesome. I particularly love the Gnarly for how expressive it is, but as I said, they are all awesome.

I was recently impressed by this one also. Works so well in a mix (I did the music).

Also loved this one...



Gold Supporting Member
You can't go wrong with a scarab deluxe, I've had mine on my board for about 2 years or so it's versatile as hell. I have been eyeing up the spookytooth lately I love that subtle octave sound it has.

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