Need some education on FUZZ

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by teestone, Feb 18, 2015.

  1. teestone

    teestone Mostly Regular Member Silver Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Abilene, TX
    Of all the pedals I've had come and go over the years, never had a fuzz.

    I know...what's my malfunction...

    Overdrive and distortion have always been a constant.

    After a few years messing around with digital modeling gear, I found myself using the fuzz pedals in my modeler more often than not when adding a stompbox for dirt.

    Now I'm assembling a pedalboard again and I kind of want some fuzz.

    Problem is...damn there's a lot of them out there!

    I've been through the two most recent "strictly fuzz" threads and have a basic understanding of the different avenues I could travel.

    I really like the idea of blending the silicon and germanium transistors to get the best of both worlds. Crazy oscillation and noise isn't really what I'm looking for.

    What are some of the basics one needs to know when trying to pick a fuzz pedal?

    I use quite a few pedals so it would need to play nice with others. It would run in front of a two channel channel set clean and the other with a bit of sizzle on it.

    If there are any must read threads on them please. Doing a search for fuzz results in lots of threads...many of which I've picked through.
  2. buzzp

    buzzp Member

    Sep 14, 2011
    Charm City (baltimore)
    Welcome to the rabbit hole. I'll have to vote for these:

    Basic Audio Scarab Deluxe
    Mojohand Crosstown

    If you like muff style fuzzes... that's not my thing so you'll have to ask for someone elses advice. Personally I like crazy sounding synthy/velcro fuzzes so I don't use either of those.
  3. small axe

    small axe Member

    Aug 2, 2009
    either you want the germanium transistor sound or the silicon sound. both are great. i personally own an sunface that is think is pretty sweet
  4. Snufkinoob

    Snufkinoob Member

    Mar 20, 2011
    I'd recommend starting out with a Plum Crazy Fuzzy Lady and take it from there. IRRC it uses both Si & Ge transistors? It's a great Fuzz Face with useful features rather than an excessive amount of bells & whistles.

    I'm not really into stacking fuzz with overdrive or distortion, but I remember it sounded great running into an Overdrive. I think it was the Catalinbread CB30 I had at the time. Didn't really like it on it's own, but I was surprised by how good it sounded with the Fuzzy Lady.

    Failing that, just a good Germanium fuzz face that's within whatever budget you have. I have some sound clips of a Ge FF in my sig and that's a fairly standard build with no fancy mojo if you're curious.
  5. bobcunningham

    bobcunningham Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    You're going to get a lot of suggestions. What style of music do you play?
    I use a EQD Dream Crusher, which is a Fuzz Face-type circuit. Very nice sounding basic fuzz. It can go from very aggressive, to overdrivey to clean according to how you use the volume knob on your guitar.
  6. gearscrubs

    gearscrubs Supporting Member

    Oct 10, 2013
    I predict you will get about a hundred different fuzzes mentioned.

    First, reading the fuzz history at kit rae is a good start, if you haven't already:

    Second, try a representative model from each of the main classes - Fuzz Face, Tone Bender, & Muff to see where your tastes lie. Even the current branded FF and Muff pedals are pretty decent and affordable. If you decide to go the boutique route, be prepared to go on a long and expensive tone-chase. Best of luck.
  7. Vox66

    Vox66 Member

    Feb 21, 2012
    Jersey Shore
    I just got my first fuzz about a month ago and it's the tits! I went for a Chase Tone Red Stardust germanium fuzz.
  8. Prince

    Prince Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2010
    Atlanta, GA
    I second this motion!

    Try out one from each of the big three camps, determine what fuzz characteristics you're after (woolly, velcro, wall of sound, guitar vol knob clean up, etc), then find a boutique offering that tickles your fancy.

    Fuzz is the best!
  9. cbm

    cbm Silver Supporting Member

    Jan 24, 2010
    San Francisco Bay Area
    I would pick up a few dirt cheap examples, cheap enough so that you can consider them disposable. They will help you determine what basic classes of fuzz you like. Then you can start shopping for outstanding examples of that class.
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2015

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