Maxon OD808 - What's the truth?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by StratStringSlinger, Feb 15, 2012.

  1. StratStringSlinger

    StratStringSlinger Member

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    I've been looking at the Maxon OD-808 b/c I want an original tube screamer type but would prefer a MXR style/smaller enclosure.

    On their website it says that it's exactly a replica of a vintage TS-808 they used to make except for switching the output resisters around. Given Maxon's history, I don't have a reason to doubt this as they are the original manufacturers of the Tube Screamer.

    On the Analogman site, it says the Maxon od808 is really a TS10 circuit (which the site says is a 'further' departure from the ts-808).

    What's the truth on this? Or is both true and Maxon has improved their construction?

    Thanks.

    P.S. Has anyone converted the Maxon od808 to true bypass? How easy is this and does it mess with the tone?
     
  2. vintage66

    vintage66 Member

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    Yep, I've noticed that discrepancy too and I don't know who's right. I do know it's a great sounding od-warmer than a Ts-9 or Od-9, smooth, it does the classic mid-hump/bass cut that tube screamers are known for, which isn't a bad thing at all imo. I'm interested in hearing others chime in on the actual circuitry-I'd like to think it's a dead on 808, but either way I like it a lot and it's one of my never sell pedals.
     
  3. SteelerFan88

    SteelerFan88 Member

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    I have owned many tubescreamers including the 808 & Ts9 and about everything in between. The Maxon 808 is a better unit compared to the ts9. It has less of a midrange hump, smoother/fuller lows and the overall "grind" is more smooth to my ears.....My top pick for a screamer is the GMD "Luther Drive" It is a tweaked Maxon 808. It's what I use. The standard Maxon 808 would be my next choice.
     
  4. john l

    john l Member

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    I was prepared to spend way more than what the Maxon costs to nail the tone of a friends vintage 808, even though I think I touch on it I tried MANY OTHER TS type pedals besides the few mentioned in the thread (that included an original TS 9 and 10) and decided on the Maxon
    Heres the thread.
    http://www.thegearpage.net/board/showthread.php?t=946310

    I think Anolog Mike is one of the all time greats so no disrespect intended but both myself an my absolute TS nut bag buddy agreed that OD808 was where its add for those tones.
     
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  5. StratStringSlinger

    StratStringSlinger Member

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    I will probably buy a Maxon OD808 even if it's verified that the construction is cheaper; The sound clips sound noticeably better for my tastes. I would then probably have it modded by Analogman or someone for true bypass if this mod doesn't mess with the tone. Anyone done a true bypass mod?
     
  6. Dipintoplayer

    Dipintoplayer Member

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    I owned a Maxon od808..it sound fantastic with my Blues jr and Marshall JCM800..I had to sell it to pay some vet bills..

    According the the Analogman website there is some bad build features with this pedal ..so you may want to look on there site for specifics..

    I had 0 problems with mine and as i said earlier i thought it sounded fantastic.....
     
  7. Heady Jam Fan

    Heady Jam Fan Member

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    The output section seems to be what defines TS's (though there are other changes to boutique or highly modded ones). That being said, IMO any real change, particularly to something like a cap value, in the output section would mean it is not an 808. It should be easy to check the specs for someone who is technically inclined.

    Other build features (mentioned above) would likely be the Maxon footswitch - some people find it harder to engage.
     
  8. Hawkeye

    Hawkeye Member

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    I owned and loved a Maxon 808 for years - when I decided to buy it was when my friend who's a tone freak and owns a guitar shop did a blind test with it and an original ibanez vintage 808, and I picked the Maxon, to my own surprise.

    I'm not dead positive, but I believe Maxon now owns the factory where the original chips were made for the vintage Ibanezes, and makes theirs there using same equipment, etc. Not that that necessarily makes a huge difference, you can judge significance for yourself. Can anyone else confirm that?
     
  9. matthornet

    matthornet Member

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    I used to own a Maxon OD808 some years ago too. Loved how smooth and warm it was. If you're looking to push your tube amp with it you're definitely gonna be pleased. It is a fairly low gain pedal so I thought it worked really well as a rhythm drive. But my need for that moment was a medium gain od so I regrettably sold it. But for a really good price back then so I'm comforted.
     
  10. Lespaulsignature 74

    Lespaulsignature 74 Silver Supporting Member

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    Not to derail this thread but I have an old Ibanez UE400 Multi Effects rack that I've had since the early 80's, would this have the original vintage 808 circuits that you speak of ?


    [​IMG]
     
  11. mmolteratx

    mmolteratx Member

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    No. Absolutely not. But they have been made on the exact same machines in the exact same factory since they were introduced.
     
  12. Whalestone

    Whalestone Member

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    The discourse regarding differences between the TS-808 and later TS versions usually revolves around opamps and output buffer configurations.
    Neither opamps nor buffer configurations of the UE400 overdrive are identical to those of the TS-808.
     
  13. whaiyun

    whaiyun Member

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    I believe the Maxon OD808 is very similar to the TS-10, rather than the TS-808
     
  14. Hawkeye

    Hawkeye Member

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    Ok, thanks for the correction... I thought the guy who told me that sounded a little overconfident :wave
     
  15. scolfax

    scolfax Member

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    So what's the closest you can get to an original 808 new in the box?
     
  16. blackba

    blackba Supporting Member

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    According to the Legendary tones report is an Ibanez TS808HW
    http://www.legendarytones.com/TS808HW.html
    http://www.legendarytones.com/TS808ri2vint.html

    I have a Maxon OD-808 that I have had for a long time and also have a Maxon OD-9. Both are great pedals. The bypass on the OD-808 isn't true bypass, but I don't notice any negative effects when its in the chain....
     
  17. vanguard

    vanguard Member

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    the maxon OD808 is the best over-the-counter TS around. in fact, the only true TS i like the sound of better is the TS808HW, and it's by a very small margin.

    analogman's beef with the the od808 is the fact that the pots are soldered directly to the board (as are the KOT's :)). in reality, the od808 is just a simple, lightweight, elegant solution to the TS search. Also, the buffered bypass is fantastic, and the switch is silent and feels great. no need to TB it. . .
     
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  18. rootbeersoup

    rootbeersoup Member

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    I'm not a tube screamer guy but of the ones I've tried/owned, I liked the OD808 best
     
  19. john l

    john l Member

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    I think your going to find the Maxon to be the prefered pedal here man. When I had the shoot out I posted earlier I literally put each pedal I tried right next to an original 808, the Maxon "IS" a brand spankin new original 808 that doesnt even sting the wallet.
     
  20. mmolteratx

    mmolteratx Member

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    TS808 RI. You don't get closer than exact.
     

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