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PTD Bone Machine vs. Rotobone

Messages
367
Hello all! I should be up soon for a PTD pedal and wanted to discuss the Bone Machine GT and the Rotobone. Can anyone here compare and contrast them? I am interested in how they differ in terms of features and tone.

What sounds are specific to each? Are they similar in their dynamic response based on picking and where the volume knob is set? I asked Paul for a Bone Machine GT but since then the Rotobone has come out which he advertises as "The king of bone pedals". How much of what the Bone Machine GT can do can be accomplished using the Rotobone?

Specifically, I intend to use it for playing funk and jazz horn lines to sound like a horn with my guitar volume dimed and an overdriven guitar with it pulled back so that I can trade with myself. The tonal variety is important to me as I play out regularly with a trio. Also important to me is the clarity that I assume would be provided by the T switch. I rarely use a fuzz with the band because most get lost in the mix. When I use one it is almost always my Lovepedal BBB11 which has tonal qualities of a treble booster. If the Rotobone can do all this, it is a second viable option for me to purchase.

I am also interested in what the Rotobone can do that the Bone Machine GT cannot? If it ends up on my pedalboard I would have to take off both my current fuzzes (Scarab Deluxe and BBB11) to make room so I am interested in how many sounds I can get from the Rotobone.

My last question is can the Mini Bone come in a GT form and do all the sounds of the Bone Machine GT? I see a T version but no GT. If so, that would possibly allow me to replace only 1 pedal on my board if I choose to add the PTD.

Thanks in advance to everyone that contributes to this thread!
 

cue311

Member
Messages
1,055
Hey Justin, I haven't seen a lot about the Rotobone on here except for my review, which you can find with a search. It is a little but embarrassing, but I do love this pedal.

Paul describes it as a purer circuit than the mini-bone (or Bone machine), with all the sustain and less hair around the edges, and I would have to agree. The Mini is awesome, but the Rotobone is a little less gnarly, maybe a little less gainy (at least, it feels that way), but still does the great bone sounds and a few more things. It just has such a pure sound. The 10 minute video demo he made below sounds pretty much like mine, and should give you a really good idea of what the pedal is capable of.

I think for jazzy lines the Rotobone would be pretty awesome. It'll do lots of variations of bone sounds, but also some other lower octave stuff that is pretty controllable with pick-attack and guitar volume. As much as I love the trombone-like sounds, setting the pedal up for the low octave-y stuff and rolling back the guitar volume allows me to bring it in and out with my dynamics, and is fairly reedy sounding when set right. I think it would be pretty cool for copping some sax lines or something.

I don't think you can get a mini GT, I think just the bone machine will do all of it. The Rotobone is an awesome addition, and for me, the best version I've used. I may still pick up a mini-bone though, as those super aggressive sounds are a hell of a lot of fun too.



Cool huh?!
 

aaronblues

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,875
I would have to take off both my current fuzzes (Scarab Deluxe and BBB11) to make room
I would have to say those 2 pedals were my favorite fuzzes i had owned, up until getting my Mini Bone. The Mini, imo, does almost everything the BBB does, not quite everything the SD does. But overall, the MiniBone has more range than any other dirt pedal i've played, period.
Haven't played a Roto. i recommend e-mailing Paul, he really will break down the differences, and what options are possible/available.

cheers, g'luck
 

screamingduck

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
3,062
I will second the emailing Paul direct and asking him those specific questions. I have the Ge/Si Bone Machine and had it retrofitted for the Treble Boost function- which is really cool as he sends four different value input caps for you to experiment with. For a while I had a cap that really cuts the lows and I was having a lot of fun hitting other fuzzes (including the PTD Tornita!KS) and getting a pseudo Tone Bender high gain tone. Right now I have my Treble Boost set with a cap that cuts less low end so still adding that cut through the mix tone with a fuller range sound.
I have not yet had the pleasure of playing a Rotobone but, if the description of a "purer" tone is correct I can only imagine how sweet that is! Even my girlfriend commented how much "better/ higher fidelity" my Bone Machine sounds compared to my other fuzzes so the Rotobone must really sound clear and pure.
 

straightblues

Member
Messages
9,669
But overall, the MiniBone has more range than any other dirt pedal i've played, period.


cheers, g'luck
This is right on. The miniBone can go from light overdrive the howling trumpet tones and everything in between. You really need about 3 on your board to even start to capture all of the available tones. Great pedal.
 
Messages
367
Hey Justin, I haven't seen a lot about the Rotobone on here except for my review, which you can find with a search. It is a little but embarrassing, but I do love this pedal.

Paul describes it as a purer circuit than the mini-bone (or Bone machine), with all the sustain and less hair around the edges, and I would have to agree. The Mini is awesome, but the Rotobone is a little less gnarly, maybe a little less gainy (at least, it feels that way), but still does the great bone sounds and a few more things. It just has such a pure sound. The 10 minute video demo he made below sounds pretty much like mine, and should give you a really good idea of what the pedal is capable of.

I think for jazzy lines the Rotobone would be pretty awesome. It'll do lots of variations of bone sounds, but also some other lower octave stuff that is pretty controllable with pick-attack and guitar volume. As much as I love the trombone-like sounds, setting the pedal up for the low octave-y stuff and rolling back the guitar volume allows me to bring it in and out with my dynamics, and is fairly reedy sounding when set right. I think it would be pretty cool for copping some sax lines or something.

I don't think you can get a mini GT, I think just the bone machine will do all of it. The Rotobone is an awesome addition, and for me, the best version I've used. I may still pick up a mini-bone though, as those super aggressive sounds are a hell of a lot of fun too.



Cool huh?!
Thanks for the information! I really enjoy the low octave sounds in that demo. The clip makes me feel confident that the Rotobone has the dynamic range that I am looking for. Unfortunately, I didn't hear any of the horn sounds that prompted me to look into a Bone Machine in the first place. Here is a video that shows what I am looking for: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGdt_8dVoD4

Here is one more: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJ4J52TLyqo

Are you able to get sounds like these from the Rotobone?

Thanks again!
 
Messages
367
I would have to say those 2 pedals were my favorite fuzzes i had owned, up until getting my Mini Bone. The Mini, imo, does almost everything the BBB does, not quite everything the SD does. But overall, the MiniBone has more range than any other dirt pedal i've played, period.
Haven't played a Roto. i recommend e-mailing Paul, he really will break down the differences, and what options are possible/available.

cheers, g'luck
Thanks for adding to the discussion! That is really cool that we share the same favorites as far as fuzz pedals. I rarely see people talking about the BBB on here but it is my current favorite fuzz for live usage. As a Les Paul player, I need the clarity from the treble boost part of the circuit. It is assuring to hear you are able to use it for sounds akin to the BBB. Thanks!
 
Messages
367
I will second the emailing Paul direct and asking him those specific questions. I have the Ge/Si Bone Machine and had it retrofitted for the Treble Boost function- which is really cool as he sends four different value input caps for you to experiment with. For a while I had a cap that really cuts the lows and I was having a lot of fun hitting other fuzzes (including the PTD Tornita!KS) and getting a pseudo Tone Bender high gain tone. Right now I have my Treble Boost set with a cap that cuts less low end so still adding that cut through the mix tone with a fuller range sound.
I have not yet had the pleasure of playing a Rotobone but, if the description of a "purer" tone is correct I can only imagine how sweet that is! Even my girlfriend commented how much "better/ higher fidelity" my Bone Machine sounds compared to my other fuzzes so the Rotobone must really sound clear and pure.

Thanks! From your description, it sounds like it should be easy to find a treble boost that works for my sound. By the way, before I could email Paul with my questions, he found this thread and took the initiative by emailing me! His excellent service is very much appreciated!
 

kimock

Member
Messages
12,520
I will second the emailing Paul direct and asking him those specific questions. I have the Ge/Si Bone Machine and had it retrofitted for the Treble Boost function- which is really cool as he sends four different value input caps for you to experiment with. For a while I had a cap that really cuts the lows and I was having a lot of fun hitting other fuzzes (including the PTD Tornita!KS) and getting a pseudo Tone Bender high gain tone. Right now I have my Treble Boost set with a cap that cuts less low end so still adding that cut through the mix tone with a fuller range sound.
I have not yet had the pleasure of playing a Rotobone but, if the description of a "purer" tone is correct I can only imagine how sweet that is! Even my girlfriend commented how much "better/ higher fidelity" my Bone Machine sounds compared to my other fuzzes so the Rotobone must really sound clear and pure.
I have both, and use a Stratoblaster circuit in an Altoid can in front of either for a little treble boost.

I got the Ge/Si Bone Machine first and got a handle on it pretty quickly for what I wanted to use it for, which was the horn type effect.
It seemed to go right there.

And it's an awesome fuzz just anyway.
I'd been using an old Vox Tonebender for 30 years as a point of reference.
Also recently a Hartman germanium fuzz, which I still prefer as a roll-back and boost type pedal. Pretty subtle with a Strat. Different trip tho.

I got the Roto eventually, and being used to the Bone Machine, I struggled a little with the additional stepped controls.
There's a lot of combinations!!

Now that I've had time to live with both, I think the Bone Machine is easier to dial into the horn sound, but the octave effects and range of the Roto along with the horn effect are worth the slightly steeper learning curve.

Finally, as a matter of personal preference and subject to the specific transistors, I think the Roto is a better stand-alone Ge fuzz sound.
Comparing the two pedals I own the Roto is fuller sounding.
More depth.
"Purer", as you mentioned above, would be a good description too.
 

MasterEvan07

Where's that buzzing coming from...?
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,457
...dang it, I've been really wanting to try the RB and now I'm even more curious...
 

cue311

Member
Messages
1,055
I love how delicate the bone pedals can sound. I can go from max gain/beyond the bone sounds and roll the volume back for sweet, full and almost airy light OD. Really a beautiful sound.

With the Y at 5 or so and the X at 2, O knob maxed but the gain lowered on the Si side I can get the sub-tones going on the high strings. Semi- ringmod like. Lightning up my touch (a lot) lets the notes come through more naturally. So cool.
 

Seegs

Member
Messages
10,169
Similar journey...wanted to be able to do horn lines as a change of pace for my trio and got on the list for a Ge/Si Rotobone based on some research and recommendations here...tough to sort through the different models and make a decision as they all seem cool:dunno

In the meantime I couldn't wait and scored a V1 mini-bone as a place holder with the intention of checking it out and flipping when my RB got here...

I fell so much in love with it that I will most likely keep it when my RB gets here...there is a fuzz/od switch on mine and as much as I love the fuzz side I fell madly in love with the od side...this is the first silicon fuzz I've had that cleans up...something I usually reserve for Germanium...also it is so warm and fat and sounds amazing with a tele...it is a bit too warm and fat for my 330s neck pickup but flip over to the bridge pu and it's magic...

In subsequent discussions with Paul he recommended that I go with the Si only RB as it is a cleaner build and that he somewhat preferred the Si tones in the RB...so who am I to argue he knows the circuit...

One question that I have is that in Mike H's demo he states that the Ge side is warmer...if it is in fact warmer than the Si side I could see it having a problem cutting through the mix as the Si only MB is incredibly warm and woody sounding...I have also heard others state that the Ge side is brighter...lower gain and cleaner sounding...

Also for the differences between Ge and Si...I have a Chandler ltd ge overdrive that is incredibly bright and much brighter than the Si boost they sell...in some cases it's brighter and other times warmer?

Question for you guys that have the Ge/Si pedals...what are the differences that you hear between the different trannies and with what guitars/pickups and amps do you use ge or si? I don't own a hum bucker guitar and play through teles and P-90 guitars and use Vox style and Fender BF amps with Celestion Golds...

As it is I'm going Si only and am wondering if I should get the Ge/Si option as my pedal should be finished in a couple of weeks...

Chow,
Seegs
 
Messages
367
Similar journey...wanted to be able to do horn lines as a change of pace for my trio and got on the list for a Ge/Si Rotobone based on some research and recommendations here...tough to sort through the different models and make a decision as they all seem cool:dunno

In the meantime I couldn't wait and scored a V1 mini-bone as a place holder with the intention of checking it out and flipping when my RB got here...

I fell so much in love with it that I will most likely keep it when my RB gets here...there is a fuzz/od switch on mine and as much as I love the fuzz side I fell madly in love with the od side...this is the first silicon fuzz I've had that cleans up...something I usually reserve for Germanium...also it is so warm and fat and sounds amazing with a tele...it is a bit too warm and fat for my 330s neck pickup but flip over to the bridge pu and it's magic...

In subsequent discussions with Paul he recommended that I go with the Si only RB as it is a cleaner build and that he somewhat preferred the Si tones in the RB...so who am I to argue he knows the circuit...

One question that I have is that in Mike H's demo he states that the Ge side is warmer...if it is in fact warmer than the Si side I could see it having a problem cutting through the mix as the Si only MB is incredibly warm and woody sounding...I have also heard others state that the Ge side is brighter...lower gain and cleaner sounding...

Also for the differences between Ge and Si...I have a Chandler ltd ge overdrive that is incredibly bright and much brighter than the Si boost they sell...in some cases it's brighter and other times warmer?

Question for you guys that have the Ge/Si pedals...what are the differences that you hear between the different trannies and with what guitars/pickups and amps do you use ge or si? I don't own a hum bucker guitar and play through teles and P-90 guitars and use Vox style and Fender BF amps with Celestion Golds...

As it is I'm going Si only and am wondering if I should get the Ge/Si option as my pedal should be finished in a couple of weeks...

Chow,
Seegs
Hi Seegs,

I always enjoy when we get a chance to chat in a thread. Obviously, I cannot answer your questions because as of today, I own zero PTD pedals. I can give you my reasoning for wanting the Ge/Si option.

If the pedal works out how I hope, it will be my only fuzz pedal on a board I use for both live performance and studio work. Despite complaining about fuzz tones that do not translate well live, I have experienced their importance in recordings. Also, every gig is different and sometimes the warm tone that was mush one night is clear at the next.

Since I will not be playing the same song, with the same band, with the same guitar, at the same venue, every gig, I prefer to have options.
 

Seegs

Member
Messages
10,169
Hi Seegs,

I always enjoy when we get a chance to chat in a thread. Obviously, I cannot answer your questions because as of today, I own zero PTD pedals. I can give you my reasoning for wanting the Ge/Si option.

If the pedal works out how I hope, it will be my only fuzz pedal on a board I use for both live performance and studio work. Despite complaining about fuzz tones that do not translate well live, I have experienced their importance in recordings. Also, every gig is different and sometimes the warm tone that was mush one night is clear at the next.

Since I will not be playing the same song, with the same band, with the same guitar, at the same venue, every gig, I prefer to have options.
Thx Justin...ditto! Truer words were never spoken...I played such a room a few weeks ago...during soundcheck I grabbed my #1... an amazing 330 with a vox style Morgan amp and it just didn't cut through/sit in the mix (even with celestion golds) and felt all wrong...to the rescue...my tele...had a great gig after I made the switch...that night the mb saw some action as an od as did my Chandler...the mb replaced a 90s Rat which I usually use to take things over the top...the mb is so fat and juicy and feels great as well but sometimes that Rat in all its ugliness is what I need!!

Yes in the studio or a 2 band situation etc. those warm tones might be just what the doctor ordered...

Anyway mine should be here by the middle of Feb. and I am beyond excited!!

Chow,
Seegs
 

screamingduck

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
3,062
Similar journey...wanted to be able to do horn lines as a change of pace for my trio and got on the list for a Ge/Si Rotobone based on some research and recommendations here...tough to sort through the different models and make a decision as they all seem cool:dunno

In the meantime I couldn't wait and scored a V1 mini-bone as a place holder with the intention of checking it out and flipping when my RB got here...

I fell so much in love with it that I will most likely keep it when my RB gets here...there is a fuzz/od switch on mine and as much as I love the fuzz side I fell madly in love with the od side...this is the first silicon fuzz I've had that cleans up...something I usually reserve for Germanium...also it is so warm and fat and sounds amazing with a tele...it is a bit too warm and fat for my 330s neck pickup but flip over to the bridge pu and it's magic...

In subsequent discussions with Paul he recommended that I go with the Si only RB as it is a cleaner build and that he somewhat preferred the Si tones in the RB...so who am I to argue he knows the circuit...

One question that I have is that in Mike H's demo he states that the Ge side is warmer...if it is in fact warmer than the Si side I could see it having a problem cutting through the mix as the Si only MB is incredibly warm and woody sounding...I have also heard others state that the Ge side is brighter...lower gain and cleaner sounding...

Also for the differences between Ge and Si...I have a Chandler ltd ge overdrive that is incredibly bright and much brighter than the Si boost they sell...in some cases it's brighter and other times warmer?

Question for you guys that have the Ge/Si pedals...what are the differences that you hear between the different trannies and with what guitars/pickups and amps do you use ge or si? I don't own a hum bucker guitar and play through teles and P-90 guitars and use Vox style and Fender BF amps with Celestion Golds...

As it is I'm going Si only and am wondering if I should get the Ge/Si option as my pedal should be finished in a couple of weeks...

Chow,
Seegs

This is a tough call! I'm guessing your V1 MiniBone is all Si, correct? If that is the case , by all means I would go for the Ge/Si Option. I have this option on both my Bone Machine and Tornita!KS and tend to use the Ge side more at home and Si or Ge/Si hybrid more for gigs. The temperature thing with germanium is always in the back of my mind- doing a sound check in an empty room and then coming back later to play with stage lights and a room full of people can play havoc on those Ge transistors!
 

cue311

Member
Messages
1,055
I don't gig, so take this for what it is worth.

Seegs, does your V1 have a presence switch? I don't know what stock would be, but the middle position is brighter and clearer (to me).

The Ge has a different texture to the sound, but it isn't muffled or anything. The fattest sound I can make on my Rotobone is with the Si side! I think the clarity and lower gain work great with my Les Paul Studio (I prefer to use bridge and middle position on the pickup selector, but right now my bridge pickup is out of commission (still), so I am using my Duncan Jazz lowered with the pole pieces raised for a lighter sound).

The Ge trannie loses the bone sounds faster when lowering the gain (they are on the more extreme settings than the Si which is pretty well rounded that way), so the same Fat setting (gain down) that I can get on Si (with shades (or more) of sub-tones) loses the sub-tones quicker and isn't as fat. So, to me, it depends on application. Thinning the tone with the X and Y knobs is a bonus, but if you aren't careful you'll change the nature of the sub-tone (bone) sounds.

I believe adding the Ge doesn't make it full Ge, but a hybrid Si/Ge, so the temperature thing isn't as much of an issue I would guess. With single coils, I found the Si side to work better. More gain, a different feel, more explosive than the Ge, which translated better with the single coils.

But, I do like options. :)
 
Messages
367
Today, I received my Rotobone +Ge.

It is mindblowing!

I have never been more impressed with any pedal in my life! On the Germanium side, with the volume pulled back, it produces the sweetest overdriven sound I have ever played. I A/Bed it with my Tim and it was incredible how dynamic and warm it is. With one flick of the volume knob, it was like changing instruments. The horn sounds were warm yet clear. I played some Charlie Parker, Herbert Hancock, and Freddie Hubbard tunes and fell in love!

The silicon side is brighter and more extreme. I can't stress how fun it is to max the x and y knobs and trade back and forth between sparkly overdrive and crazy trumpet sounds.

Overall, the pedal is the most musical fuzz I have ever played. It is exactly what I have been searching for and will change the way I play guitar.

I have a solo show this Wednesday and a gig with my trio this Thursday, so I will report back with how it fares in different live settings.
 

PlexiFuzz

I know karate. Voodoo, too.
Messages
9,673
This is making me want a Rotobone even more. And a Tornita. Maybe even in one box --- a Rotobonita!
 






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