First fuzz for the fuzz-curious?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by 59Bassman, Mar 27, 2015.

  1. 59Bassman

    59Bassman Plank Cranker Silver Supporting Member

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    I'm probably going to regret this, but here goes...

    I've been playing almost 30 years. Most of that time has been roots/classic rock/blues. I know that a number of artists I dig use fuzz pedals, but I've never been able to get there. I've owned a number of OD boxes and some full-on distortion pedals. But every time I plug into a fuzz I twiddle knobs and almost immediately turn it off.

    I like hearing definition and a bit of dynamics in my tone. I like being able to distinguish individual strings in chords, even at higher gain. I guess that's why I like my Boogie Mk V - it's "dry" - the notes do not smear together. Every fuzz pedal I've tried tends to be very "splatty" if that makes sense. There does not seem to be much in the way of dynamics. Notes are either silent, or part of a unified wall of smeared sound.

    There are some guys who can use that and do well with it. I'd like to figure it out, but am looking for a "gateway" fuzz if you will. Any ideas on a fuzz for under $150 that will allow me to start messing around with it? Something that retains at least a little bit of definition between strings and notes?

    Or is that just an inherent part of a fuzz's character?
     
  2. jota

    jota Member

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    I'm one of those guys who usually hates fuzz.
    I've been using a Fuzz Head and I kind of like it! Specially has a boost for my KoT to get in lead territory.
    One fuzz I'd like to try is the Jimi Hendrix Fuzzface mini. Not the new Band of Gypsys. The old one.
    From the demos it's the one that sounds best to me.
     
  3. eddie knuckles

    eddie knuckles Silver Supporting Member

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    I too, am not a fuzz guy. I use one for one song in my Top 40 Country and Rock band. For my solo ambient needs, I need fuzz almost as much as I need reverb!

    Fuzz Head is a GREAT pedal. 2 types of fuzz in one pedal.

    I used a Big Muff back in the '70's. Between that, a Tone Bender type or a fuzz face, you are in that "classic rock" vein all the way.

    I use a Jupiter now by Walrus Audio. I can crank out some serious fuzz voodoo with that thing
     
  4. scolfax

    scolfax Member

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    OP: Can't go wrong with the Joe Bonamassa Fuzz Face
     
  5. mdrake34

    mdrake34 Member

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    Having always loved other people's fuzz tones, but never being able to get them to work for me with two different SI fuzz face variants, I finally found one that works for me in the new Hendrix Mini BOG fuzz. If you can't crank your amp, it likes having some base dirt in front of it, but it also sounds good into a clean amp.

    The standard TGP "safe" or "first" fuzz, which is a pricey suggestion for that application, IMO, is the Scarab Deluxe.
     
  6. NewDr.P

    NewDr.P Member

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    i dont like them either. every time i buy a fuzz pedal and sort of get used to it and tell myself if like it ill unplug it and play direct into one of my amps and im like, 'wow! this sounds ****ing amazing!' and then i ditch the fuzz pedal and be very happy with my tone again.

    i guess my advice is fuzz isnt for everyone. play what sounds good to you.
     
  7. sleewell

    sleewell Member

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    fuzzhugger algal bloom
     
  8. tuj

    tuj Member

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    fuzzhugger algal bloom XS+
     
  9. 1973Marshall

    1973Marshall Member

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    I really like the Fulltone Soul Bender, Earthquaker
    Hoof and analogman astrotone as 3 choices that will work with most rigs and stack with other pedals.

    If you don't use fuzz much, these can be eased into a simple setup and don't require a Marshall at volume, specific pickups, EQ curve etc. The astrotone is my fave because you can use it into any amp and the gain control works thru the whole range. It gigs and records well and stacked with inexpensive pedals like a TS or Soul Food gets great results.
     
  10. AParrotLooksAt4O

    AParrotLooksAt4O Member

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    Great recommendation and description. You mentioned a Marshall, but have you tried it with Fenders? If so, how does it react to the scooped sound of the typical Fender amp? My problem with fuzz is that it usually augments the scoop, which can result in mud with a brittle top end.
     
  11. BluesHarp

    BluesHarp Member

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    A place to start is with a really good Germ Fuzz Face and a few hours of turning knobs ( amp, guitar, and pedal ) in order to know and appreciate its potential.
     
  12. bettset

    bettset Member

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    it's not a fuzz......but i like a mudhoney II. no knock on fuzz's.......some really good pedals that just seemed too much for what i wanted. the mudster hit the note right :munch
     
  13. Jet Age Eric

    Jet Age Eric Member

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    SolidgoldFX Rosie is incredibly articulate and dynamic--even with the fuzz wide open--and is an amazing Tone Bender MKII. I think it's $175, but a coupon would get you to $150. You'd want to start with the Bias knob fully clockwise, then slowly roll it back if you want more of that classic gated attack. Blackout Effectors' fuzzes are really articulate, too, but not as dynamic.

    All of the above stack wonderfully, and work equally well with Fenders and Marshalls. -E
     
  14. tga-3

    tga-3 Supporting Member

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    Demeter Fuzzulator.
     
  15. mdrake34

    mdrake34 Member

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    OP might want a fuzzy OD, like a Way Huge Red Llama or MXR FET Driver. The EHX Nano Hot Tubes also does this sound.
     
  16. e-flat

    e-flat Supporting Member

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    I'd suggest the Bearfoot or BJF Pink Purple Fuzz. It has a nice bloom to it with the Fuzz turned up a bit, but stays tighter in the lows like a good distortion. Lots of output available, sounds terrific. Great note definition, too.
     
  17. bobcunningham

    bobcunningham Member

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    EQD Dream Crusher is a great Fuzz Face variant. Great note definition.
     
  18. meterman

    meterman Member

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    yeah I agree with this, germ fuzz is the most versatile b/c it cleans up great and has lots of shades of dirt besides full-out fuzz available with small tweaks of the volume knob. I recommend the small box Fulltone '69 MkII, great little fuzzface in the OP's budget and it has the extra controls for even more variety of tones.

    Or if you want to jump in to something a little higher gain but still sweet I love the Foxrox Hybrid CC!
     
  19. Pedal Dan

    Pedal Dan The Island of Misfit Pedals Gold Supporting Member

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    Dunlop mini's are great!
     
  20. playthecray

    playthecray Member

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    I agree. MJM London Fuzz is great.



     

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