Fuzz, Fuzz and more Fuzz HELP!!!

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by Rock-On!!, Aug 2, 2006.


  1. Rock-On!!

    Rock-On!! Member

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    I have tried the search function and came up with a staggering amount of info on Fuzz pedals. So much so that I am totally confused. I am looking for a Fuzz that will cover early Clapton and Hendrix. Some thing simple and cost effective.
    Does this exist in one Fuzz pedal?
    Should it be SI or GE, powered, led, battery, etc...?:NUTS

    Help me out here guys, this is all starting to get over hy head.:crazy
     
  2. Jacobpaul81

    Jacobpaul81 Member

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    Thats the consistent problem with fuzz. It's tough to understand. Tell us a bit about your rig...

    what guitar(s):
    pedals:
    amp(s):
    Do you gig out alot?:
    If you don't, where do you play?:
    What kind of power do you want to use: battery, adaptor?
    If an adaptor, do you use a unit with isolated outs, or daisy chain?
    Do you want a fuzz that will clean up at the volume knob (like hendrix and clapton) or do you want a fuzz that once turned on, stays fuzzy at any guitar volume?
     
  3. Rock-On!!

    Rock-On!! Member

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    Wow,
    That’s a refreshing reply. :AOK
    Nice to see someone interested in the style and needs, instead of just rattling off random suggestions. Now, maybe this will help me understand more about what I need and how, why and what a Fuzz is designed for.

    I recently discovered that some of the tones I have been hearing on classic songs weren’t created with just an OD, but with a Fuzz along with an OD or even just a Fuzz alone.

    Ok, Here is the run down.
    what guitar(s):Les Paul R8, Fender Strat, PRS w/P90s and a PRS Hollowbody.

    pedals: StroboStomp, Budda Wah, Barber Tone Press, Bad Monkey, Fulltone OCD, Boss Delay, Boss Ce2.

    amp(s):Marshall Silver Jubilee, Fender Twin Tweed, Mesa Lonestar Classic.

    Do you gig out a lot?:Not any more, I am getting too old

    If you don't, where do you play?:I play at home and jam with friends.

    What kind of power do you want to use: battery, adaptor? Not sure at this point.

    If an adaptor, do you use a unit with isolated outs, or daisy chain? Isolated with a Pedal Power II Plus.

    Do you want a fuzz that will clean up at the volume knob (like hendrix and clapton) or do you want a fuzz that once turned on, stays fuzzy at any guitar volume? Still unclear on this issue.

    Clapton is one of my all time favorites.
    What are the advantages of full time on vs volume knob manipulation?
     
  4. Jacobpaul81

    Jacobpaul81 Member

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    Alright! Now were talking...
    I should make that a standard "fill this out" kind of form. :BEER


    So, key points to take into account:

    You are mixing pickups.
    You play through both Marshall and Fender type amps.
    Your location is stable.
    You have several pedals with buffers, so one is not needed.
    You are open to both a battery or adaptor (and possess one with isolated outs)
    you are unsure of the final question (big question)!!


    to answer the question first.... The point of having a pedal which cleans up at the knob, is not that it actually cleans up, but that it gets less fuzzy and at the same time adds nice harmonically rich background textures. This can sound fantastic with a stacked OD, because you can get that driven tone, but with an extra bit of harmonicly rich flair. Additionly, because both pedals are pushing, you should maintain the volume of two pedals pushing at the same time.

    Now, my recommendation is that since you are looking for a vintage tone, particularly a fuzz face (both hendrix and clapton used them), you should be focusing on a fuzz face clone. It should probally be GE, as SI pedals are less warm to most ears. You should have less stabuility problems (not gigging) and they tend to respond well to multiple pickup types. Another possible option from the GE side would be a Vox Tonebender clone, as it is a similar circuit with a smaller input cap, but can sound very close to the fuzz face.

    I feel that your current rig could handle a Germanium pedal, and if it has an adaptor out, your pedal power could power it through it's isolated outs (big plus in my book!). An SI isn't going to be as warm or vintage sounding as the GE, which I imagine will be a big deal to you.

    So, what pedals are out there? Well, to be sure there are alot.

    Here are some Ideas which vary in price and size:

    Throback Fuzz Haze
    Analogman Sun Face
    Aramat Mojo Fuzz
    MJM London Fuzz
    Phoenix Custom Electronics "The Fuzz" or the "Lady Stardust"

    These are all off the top of my head. There are many other fuzz faces out there so you might need to do some searching. I think this is a good place to start though.
     
  5. retro

    retro Member

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    Judging by your posts, I would have to recommend Retroman's Sybil.

    I don't know of another fuzz that is vintage and is as flexible, tonally and as gear and rig friendly.

    So far it has worked with SC, HB and P90's. Fenders and Marshalls and others. It's Ge and Si or both. It is vintage or not. It cleans up with the best. You'll love backing the volume knob down on Sybil. It stacks well. It works as an OD even. It works great at bedroom levels and at gig levels. And it doesn't get lost in the mix. A big fuzz issue.

    Did I mention it has tone control? Yep two tone pots. < Another great feature with fuzz.

    And even an on and off switch.

    I sold my first one because I wanted to explore more fuzz pedals [They sell easily by the way. (Another consideration IMO).]

    So I went through the fuzz hunt in earnest....I did find some interesting things out along the way and have kept a couple of them, but in the end I just bought another Sybil.
     
  6. Rock-On!!

    Rock-On!! Member

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    I think you are right about the Germanium pedal.
    A couple of things to consider;
    I plan on building and wiring the board with George L cables so that all the pedals inputs and outputs will be plugged in at all times. A pedal that can be powered would work best, however if it only runs on batteries I can modify it with a mini toggle to cut the power from the battery off.

    I also plan to run all the pedals into a custom true bypass strip with a master bypass so all the effects can be selected at one convenient location and they all can be bypassed with a single click of the master bypass.
    Something like this;
    [​IMG]

    Will I need a buffer of some type before the bypass strip?


    Most of those pedals that have been mentioned are not cheep. :eek:
    What makes them so expensive? I will probably have to shop eBay or post a WTB here on the GP once I narrow it down to one or two options.


    I really like the clips of the Analogman Sun Face and the Sybil, but they are at the top of the food chain.

    Thanks again for you thoughts and input.:BEER

    Edit; Someone just hit the BIN on a $75.00 pedal I had on eBay, so that helps.:dude
     
  7. Lund

    Lund Member

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    dont use a buffer before the bypass strip, it will ruin any pedal that works best without a buffer in front of it, like a fuzz.

    Use a buffer after the strip or directly in the loop (i think thats what cornish does).

    But... with high quality cables and perhaps a buffer after the strip i think you will be fine - and probably also without... you could also place a nonbuffered pedal at the end... like a reverb or delay, and get a free buffer that way.

    That Sybil sure sounds great.

    I would check that out or the analogman or the london fuzz (had that one... nice pedal).

    Silicon is nice as well, dont rule those out.

    Michael
     
  8. Jacobpaul81

    Jacobpaul81 Member

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    The MJM can normally be picked up for a 1 spot used. Another fuzz possibuility might be a fulltone '69 which could be had for a similar price off the used market.

    I agree with Lund on the buffer issue.
     
  9. lcjc800

    lcjc800 Member

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    Often fuzzes don't like buffers before them as has been mentioned. I have used the London fuzz Si and it was nice, also a Wolf tone Mach. from Retroman and that was pretty over the top. But I have relied on the Diaz Texas Square face for a long time and it's alright, doesn't like buffers at all. I recently picked up an early R. Mayer Octavia and its pretty cool for brighter Hendrix stuff and Ive got a lovepedal Dragon with the copper Finnish that does great early tone bender/ range master TB well. There's a few pedals out there that are marketed as fuzzes that are just plain noise makers, but if your looking for classic stuff sounding pedals using traditional gear then look for the players ( that you like) preference and try them. Julien Kasper is a big fuzz/ distortion guy check him out.Julien Kasper - Guitarist
     
  10. drolling

    drolling Member

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    This is a great read for me, and brings to mind a couple of things I've wondered about over the years.

    Most of the fuzzes I've accumulated run on 'backwards' power supplies, so I tend to go thru' a lot of batteries, as I can't daisy-chain 'em to the rest of my pedals.. so;

    Does a power supply w/isolated outs get around this problem? I've been putting off buying a good one for too long now. What else besides the VoodooLab works in this situation?

    And just out of sheer curiousity, why is it that fuzz power's got to be inverted?

    Thanks guys!
     
  11. Rock-On!!

    Rock-On!! Member

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    Ok,
    Based on what Has been posted, I have located two options.
    1; AnalalogMan Sunface Pedal $185.00 shipped
    2; Retroman Sybil $200.00 plus shipping

    What do you guys think? Are these good prices?
    Which would be the best value ROI incase I hate it.
    The more important issue which would suit what I am looking for better?
    Which would be the best value ROI incase I hate it.
    Thanks again for your input.
     
  12. Ned

    Ned Member

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    I would recommend the BJF Pink Purple Fuzz!!! its a great Hendrix//Clapton vintage GE style fuzz without all the complications of having to deal with the GE transistors. it sounds amazing and you should check it out, and i think everyone here can stand behind the quality of BJF pedals.

    the Sybil also would be a great choice. read up as much as you can and you can always sell the pedals for about the same price you bought it for if you are not pleased and try another one.:dude
     
  13. retro

    retro Member

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    Both are great pedals.

    I would assume the Sunface is the NOS NKT-275 with sundial?

    As far as the Sybil goes that seems like the going price.

    The first one I bought new. The 2nd one I just got for right around $200 plus shipping.
    I sold mine for here for $200.00. It went in a couple of hours and had several offers stacked up.

    Like you I found a bewildering amount of recommendations for fuzz pedals. It wasn't until I started trying as many as I could that I started to understand why that was. It's an interesting beast.

    I can only report that for me Sybil covers more ground then any other fuzz pedal I've tried so far.
     
  14. drolling

    drolling Member

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    Yeah, tons of useful, musical tones packed into that little pink box. Sybil also does a nice treble boost and crunchy rhythm tones w/the gain rolled back.

    If you're looking to save dough, tho', Fulltone fuzzes are always available cheap on the second hand market. They're one-trick-ponies, IMO, but good, solid construction & true-bypass. The Soulbender nails Page/Beck/Clapton tones and the '69 & 70s pedals do *early* and *late* Hendrix fuzztones. I've kept mine because they're perfect for those applications.

    But my heart belongs to Sybil
     
  15. Jacobpaul81

    Jacobpaul81 Member

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    Its inverted due to the germanium transistor. That's pretty much the only reason I know of. Im not a electronic expert, but that's always been the reasoning I've assertained.

    Yes, a Pedal Power with Isolated outs will power your fuzz. Just dont connect that particular out with any other pedals that aren't reversed polarity. Like if you have a ge rangemaster, then it could be chained with your GE fuzz. A hotcake could be plugged into any other out, but not the one that the fuzz is plugged in.

    Some power units have isolated outs, but often times there are only 3-4 isolated outs, and even more typical is the grouping of outs... like for instance, 1-4 are one out, 5-8 another, etc. Devices that Im pretty sure have individual isolated outs (although Id do my research before buying): VHT Valvulator, PP2, PP2+, Flatliner, and the Juicebox. I know the Dunlop Juicer and Brick do not have isolated outs. You can also simply plug them into a boss type power adaptor (as long as only reversed polarity pedals are connected to it.
     
  16. Jacobpaul81

    Jacobpaul81 Member

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    Rock-On,

    I personally think the sybil might be more than you need out of a pedal, especially since you are currently unsure, and inexperianced with fuzz. Some people love them, and I myself have not used them, but Ive heard great things about retro-man's effects. So if you like the option of both SI and GE, that might be the best choice. I don't know if Retro-man is a board member, but I think so.....

    The Sunface definatly has a wealth of benefits to it, as not only does it come highly recommended, but it's resale value is quite high. It's also small and compact, and the builder (who is a board member) provides excellent customer support. It is a good investment, on the upper end of the fuzz price spectrum, but like I said, if you don't like it, you know it will re-sell. Here's a great article that includes some info on the sunface: http://www.ultimateguitargear.com/tone_party_reviews_odpedals.htm


    That being said, I do recommend looking into other units of a similar function, just because it may be worth your while (and save some of your pocket book). I think that we've given you a pretty good focus, and I think alot of the pedals offered would fit your bill. Don't be afraid to email the manufactures either.. ask them good hard questions. I know analogmike and throback are board members, and would take the time to answer all of your questions.
     
  17. Fifthstone

    Fifthstone Member

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    Fuzz's are magical, mystical things. So frustrating at times, so rewarding at others. I don't think I'll ever stop searching for "the one".
     
  18. Rock-On!!

    Rock-On!! Member

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    I think I have it narrowed down to the two mentioned before. I don’t want to keep chasing and researching all the other options. Now all I need to do is study the facts a bit more. The reviews on the Sunface are great, however I cant find any on the Sybil.

    Where in the chain should a Fuzz go? Would it be best as the first pedal or between the to ODs?
     
  19. Jacobpaul81

    Jacobpaul81 Member

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    always first if you can manage it. good luck!! :AOK
     
  20. Rock-On!!

    Rock-On!! Member

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    That would solve the battery issue with the Sunface:D
     

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