well i just took delivery of my CJOD.
here's what i don't want this thread to become:
1) a discussion of how evil i am for buying a third hand CJOD and contributing to the market value of these units and whether or not peeps are evil for selling them in the first place.
2) a discussion of how CJ is an evil person for only making 52 and refusing to release the schematics and whether or not U believe that he did so only to raise the level of mystique surrounding the pedal.
3) a discussion in abstract about pedal prices and supply and demand for pedals or any mention of way huge, dumble, train wreck or any other contentious issues that aren't related to directly to the direct operation of the CJOD.

the first thing i did was plug my rosewood tele into the CJOD and into a 35th anniversary 50 watt plexi. this amp has a tremendous amount of gain and i have to use a THD 16? hotplate to tame it down to tolerable levels.
the first thing i did was dial the volume down on the amp so i could get clean levels w/ the guitar at full volume. set the dials to their mid positions (not knowing what the individual knobs did) and clicked on the CJOD and..... NOTHING.
"great", i thought. i just brought a broken pedal and paid hundreds of $$$$ for it and it's guts are covered in impenetrum and it'll never be able to be fixed. i opened it up to see if anything was visually awry and then the thought occurred to me that maybe i should try plugging the guitar into the right side of the box rather than the left side.
much better.
up until this point i've only ever used a vintage tube screamer as an overdrive. i wanted a smoother overdrive that didn't sound as 'nasal' as the tub scrubber. i'm a non MV/attenuator kinda player and i had narrowed my choices down to an OCD, lovepedal eternity or the CJOD. i didn't know the story about the CJOD and it was only after i began to seek out how to buy one that i became aware of the myth surrounding the pedal. one became available and alto' i believed it wouldn't be fundamentally better than the OCD or the eternity i decided that an opportunity is an opportunity and they only present themselves on rare occasions.
i quickly discerned what the knobs did, rolled back the output volume knob to around 9 or 10 o'clock to normalise the volume. was a bit surprise that the gain knob was of the stepped variety. cranked it up and down while i adjusted the tone knob. i played w/ the volume and tone on the tele to see how it reacted to the gain structure of the pedal/amp.
my initial impressions were that it wasn't as smooth as i had hoped but still much smoother than the tub scrubber but not nearly as smooth as the 16dB of tube gain in the fulltone TTE. neither did i prefer the sound over bypassing the pedal and cranking the mars hall up to '7' and lettin' 'er rip. i didn't find it a terribly transparent sounding pedal either. more transparent that the nasal colouration of the tub scrubber or the slight dulling of the TTE. i absolutely LOVED the way it preserved the initial pick attack and, in fact, seemed to enhance it. i wasn't really disappointed in my initial reactions. altho' i hoped it was really as smooth as i was imagining it was, i was sceptical enough to not have built my hopes up too high.
so the word that i had heard was that the CJOD was superb at joining w/ a clean amp. the mars hall ain't that and the sub volumes that i had it set to aren't really the best sounds that this amp makes. "fine" i thought, i'll just crank 'er up to '7' and have at 'er like i'd use the tub scrubber. i LOVE the sound of output tube/tranny saturation and tend not to care for the gainstaged amps or master volume amps. the only MV amp i have is a DC30 and i rarely use the MV. i do use fuzz pedals to push thing over the edge into messes of feedback and squealing when need be and use the tub scrubber as a slight boost for when things get cookin' and i don't wanna dime the amp yet.
let me tell ya....
with the gain in the 1-2 o'clock position and the tone in the middle and the output volume set at 9:30 and the jumpered channels on the marshall set to '7', things were SMOKIN'. it really responded well to volume/tone adjustments on the guitar as well. it did that magic thing at the front of the note where it seems to enhance the attack and it really, really, REALLY was sounding rather spectacular. i tried adjusting the amount of gain and found that the extreme settings were not really that useful to me. it sounded best w/ the gain somewhere between 10 o'clock and 2 o'clock. i drug out my other gee-tars that were at home (ES295 w/bigsby, pine esquire, ancient shedua david schecter strat w/ coil split HBs, R8 lester w/ bigsby, blue flower MIJ tele w/ hipshot, masterbuilt tele w/B16 bigsby) and satisfied myself that the pedal worked very well with ALL of them. the tone control was very good at balancing the high end loss of HBs. the character of all of the guitars shone thru unimpeded, which is not always the case w/ the tub scrubber.
i took a bit of a break and went and e-mailed the former owner to tell him that i got the pedal and that it was all good and thank him for the good transaction.
i then tried the pedal w/ a reissue vibroverb w/ blackframe kendricks and mercury magnetics output tranny and choke. this amp isn't as clean as most blackface fenders but still has nice, clean, chimey sound up until about '4' on the volume knob. i tried the pedal w/ the amp clean and thought it to be much better sounding than when used w/ the marshall 'clean'. but i really didn't think it truly spectacular. i preferred the overdriven sound of the amp turned up past '7'. so i thought i'd try using it with the amp cranked out. same story as the mars hall. wonderful magic to the initial pick attack, swirling harmonics, controllable feedback w/ the volume/tone on the gee-tar.
overall i'm pretty happy w/ the pedal. in absolute terms, it's probably not worth what i paid for it but in aesthetic terms i don't really care. it makes the tub scrubber sound kinda 'cheap' and 'pedal' like in comparison. i'm not gonna banish the tub scrubber. it still has that inimitable tone that i want to use on occasion.
i'm finding it's best settings are w/ the gain set in the middle positions, the tone in the middle of it's range and the output volume set to slightly above unity. i love that U can crank the gain but then don't have to adjust the output volume to compensate for the difference. the CJOD hasn't changed my life and made me suddenly wanna play thru a clean amp and get my sound from pedals. it has made me wanna check out how it stacks w/ other OD or fuzz pedals, tho'. i have a superfuzz, fuzzprobe and an agonizer that i wanna go and see what kinda damage i can do by stacking it w/ them. and i wanna see what happens when i stack it w/ the tub scrubber. i REALLY love what the CJOD does to the front of the note and see if that translates to stacking as well.
so, excuse the arrogance of the initial 'rules' that i've laid out for this thread and please tell me how U use the pedal and what Ur favoured settings are and what ODs and fuzz pedals U are stacking w/ it.
i'm still considering the OCD and the eternity as well. so any comparisons of these to the CJOD would be extremely helpful to me in determining whether they would complement or otherwise be redundant.


Gold Supporting Member
Nice review - thanks. I use my CJOD in a pedal chain that ends with a speaker-modded Vibroking (Weber 10A150, Weber 10F150T, Fane Alnico 10). I keep the VK at about 3 on the volume knob, treble at 4, bass at 2, mids at 7. I have 3 dirt pedals (Everman Fuzzdrive G2 > CJOD > Barber LTD). My CJOD settings are similar to yours - gain at about 10 - 12 o'clock, volume a little above unity, tone at about 10 o'clock. The pedal sounds great on it's own, but EXTRA great with the Fuzzdrive tweaking it. (the Barber sounds better on it's own rather than stacked to my ears).


Silver Supporting Member
Cool review - thanks for posting it! :)

I use my CJOD as one of several OD pedals as part of a pedalboard rig. Primarily I use it as a dedicated OD pedal into the clean channel of a Fuchs ODS-50 SLX 1x12 combo. It stacks well with the other pedals (COT-50, Eternity, OCD). For this use I like the gain at full, tone at 2 o'clock, and volume set to just a hair above unity gain. It cleans up very well with the guitars volume and sounds great pushed with the COT or a compressor (Analogman Juicer). I also use the CJOD as a low gain lead boost for the overdrive channel of the amp. For this use I like the gain around 9-10 o'clock, tone at 1 o'clock, and volume set a little hot. Great OD pedal!

Don Rusk

BearFoot FX Owner
I recently sold and bought back my CJOD...... glad I did (buy it back anyway; )...

as you mentioned it has a unique interaction with the leading part of the note --- at certain points it allows the intial pick strike to come thru and then blooms it into sort of compression and useful distortion....

I mostly used it at the 2 or 3 oclock clicks on the drive knob - tone at about 2-4 oclock settings - level close to unity into a fairly clean 'Blackface' set up - and left it there.......in fact I wanted Clay to make a two stomp version, where the second stomp would switch between the 1 oclock and 3 oclock drive clicks - as this was perfect for rhythym and lead settings.......

I then changed speaker preferences to Greenbacks and the CJOD didnt seem as magical and it went in a seasonal pedal purge with some other peds I thought I was 'done' with.........

Now that its back, Ive explored some other settings that work better with my changed rig ---- less distortion for one ~ it seems to be a different pedal below Noon on the drive click pot,,,at least a different compression ratio as the greenbacks compress easier and change the final EQ ....

And Ive noticed that the tone seems to be different than the usual 'treble rolloff' and seems to shift the upper mids more than the 'presence' freqs..........

So Im sort of in a second honeymoon phase with the CJOD at the moment ....

As you said its just a reeeeally good OD - it wont make a weak rig sound killer and it wont make up for incompetant playing ---- but for certain rigs it has that last 5% of improvement that is difficult to find in many ODs.....

anyway Im glad to have it back ; }
see, this is the thing. it's not a magic bullet. it ain't even a silver bullet.
it's just a really interesting OD that does some kinda crazy envelope thing w/ notes from the guitar. i've never heard any other pedal do the same thing and in all of my research prior to purchasing it had never heard anyone go on about this particular trait that i'm diggin'. most of the stuff i heard was "dumb le in box" kinda stuff.
Deaj, could U elucidate the differences in sound and functionality of the OCD and eternity as compared to the CJOD. i'm still pondering these two pedals.
i tried stacking the CJOD w/ the tub scrubber 2nite. i still think that i like my amps cranked out and the use of OD pedals to push things into another level. i can't say that the tub scrubber really complimented the sound of the CJOD. it just kinda obscured all of the good things that i like about the CJOD and yes, i was using lower gain settings.
i also tried the CJOD w/ the univox superfuzz. i've had the superfuzz since i was a kid and it really obscures the sound of any guitar that gets plugged into it. but it's got that phenomenal 2 sounds (i particularly like the scooped mid sound) that i would never wanna give up for those 'special occasions'. stacking these two was silly good. w/ fuzz pedals like the agonizer and the fuzzprobe, U know i gotta love that over the top, crazy feedback, and screeching wall of noise stuff once in a while. lemme tell ya.... using the superfuzz and the CJOD together has breathed new life into the superfuzz and put it in silly land. i'm getting these absolutely great tearing noises that sound like the amp is about ready to blow. FANTASTIC. patch in a vox wah after them and i can get these controlled feedback notes by rocking the wah into different positions.
paint peeling, lemme tell ya.


Leaving out some pedals for the sake of simplicity;
My CJOD is after a Siegmund Missing Link, Klon and before a Stage Hog going into fairly clean amps. I like the Drive at around 12 to 01 O`Clock to benefit from the CJOD`s great touch sensitivity. Around 12 mine goes from semi clean into breakup and starts compressing in a great amplike way just by changes in pick attack.
The Tone knob also usually around 12 to 01. Btw mine doesn`t have any stepped pots.

In a perfect world the CJOD would have some more EQ/Voicing flexibility. I got the pedal around the same time as a new Juke 1210 amps. The Juke can be middy and adding the CJOD I`m close to being a little honky (more high mids than I really prefer). This is when playing at lower volumes which I`m often bound to. Turning up the amp (with the CJOD) broadens the sound and gives me a better picture.

What I like most about the CJOD and where it differs from my other pedals is the feel; the attack, the touch responsiveness, the dynamics, the way it compresses and sings.
The tonal voicing itself isn`t really perfect for a couple of my amps, but the other qualities make me mostly forget about it.


Does CJOD get along with Klon? Can you push the CJOD (when set not too saturated) with Klon into singing sustain that still stays clear and not junky sounding?


I run the Klon into my CJOD, for just that reason. The CJOD is kept on the verge of breakup (12-1). The Klon (at fairly similar settings) pushes the tone into sustained overdrive ala Warren Haynes kind of tones. A little tweaking on this and that and you're their. The character is just as good (but different) with single coils or humbuckers, el84's or 34's. It's all good.

Souled Out

threm said:
In a perfect world the CJOD would have some more EQ/Voicing flexibility. I got the pedal around the same time as a new Juke 1210 amps. The Juke can be middy and adding the CJOD I`m close to being a little honky (more high mids than I really prefer). This is when playing at lower volumes which I`m often bound to. Turning up the amp (with the CJOD) broadens the sound and gives me a better picture.

I run A SBEQ after my CJOD to sweeten the CJOD depending on the amp and guitar/setup I am using. Works really well. I am very happy with this tone.


It's All Been Done Before
Silver Supporting Member
I love my CJOD to no end, it's never getting sold. Lead work has never been so much fun (well, until I got my VOS, but that's a whole 'nuther story). A lot of people seem to like using it for its higher gain tones, but I enjoy it when the gain is set to just start clipping. I've never played a Dumble, but I envision one not being too far away from what this pedal does for me. It's so smooth, responsive and sweet, I just can't believe a pedal can do so much.

The settings that I really enjoy are: volume a little bit above 9 o'clock, tone around 1 o'clock and the gain around 11-12 o'clock

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