I picked up a SHOD CB to see how it faired against the HW for myself. Here's what i found: So tried'em out for about a half hour, going back and forth playing the same riff's, yada yada yada. There is a difference, but it's EVER so slight. For legend - HW - handwired, made in finland by mages; CB - circuit board, made in asia by asians. Observations: 1) Physically, the HW is MUCH heavier. It's not a "oh, that's a little heavier", but a significant weight difference. the two backs are very difference in weight, which tells me that the HW probably is made of a more substantial metal than the CB. They appear to be the same thickness, but the HW is pretty hefty. Even the screws that they use to close the box up are heavier/thicker on the HW. 2) as you can see, the CB is definitely all CB - didn't lift the boards up, but jacks, switch and i'd imagine pots are all wave soldered to the board. they're also plastic encased, which is probably another part of the weight - the HW components appear to be "sturdier" as it used proper jacks, and a blue 3DPT switch which i've seen in most of the pedals that've come through. they definitely just solder everything to the PCB and drop it in, close it up. the HW definitely appears as if someone has had they're hands in it. - the CB PCB's aren't super thin crappy PCB's either. they're also not good and thick, but they're definitely doing the job. neither the HW nor the CB was noisier than one another (with the expectation that the HW would be a bit noisier). 3) TONE: they're pretty well, TO MY EAR, exactly the same. after the weight thing, i thought the CB would sound cheap. that, of course, makes absolutely no sense - how weight translates into sound quality, i don't know. Probably too much time on teh interwebz. But the differences I found are VERY minute. I don't think i can stress that enough - really, VERY minute. There are differences to my ear though: - the HW seems to have a little more in the lower end. not much more, but a little more. it's a little rounder. it fills out a little more in the bottom than the CB. It sounded a little more open - the CB is a TAD thinner and sounded a little darker to me. and when i say a tad, i mean a tad. i can hear it, but i don't think it's something that would matter in a band context. - didn't notice anything about volumes being different. was pretty much able to get the CB the same with the same knob config. - the CB and the HW reacted pretty well the same to the ToneZone, but a little differently to the JB Jr. in the neck. the CB again here was darker and would overdrive a tiny bit less than the HW. - the "Focus knob" works the same on both - no difference there. Those're really the differences that i hear. The OD texture is pretty much the same. The CB definitely sounds like an SHOD in that it's not really different at all compared to the HW. It's definitely a good way to get that sound at a lower price. That's probably it. I think as of right now, I'll be keeping the HW. Not really sure, though. I think the weight/build and the slight tonal differences might be swaying me that way, but it's really not for sure. Only spent a half hour with the thing.