Spaceman Secret Mission VIII / Gemini IV

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by flyingmusicman, Jun 11, 2019.

  1. friend33

    friend33 Silver Supporting Member

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    Crossposting this from the Mood thread, you can ignore if/as needed. ;)

    Signal path was LeClair tele > Gemini IV > Ross Flanger > Mood > At Mars Specialist/Filmosound, voice memo recording on iPhone.



    Spent a couple hours with the G4 getting to know it, I do quite dig it so far. Started on the Si side alone exploring gain knob positions, filter settings, guitar vol/tone interactions, then the same with the Ge side, then a bit of blending and using the phase switch. Lots of cool stuff in there! :cool:

    As the gain goes up on the Si side, you get a great squishy/saggy sound with a grainy/crumblish sustain/decay. As the filter gets far into CCW, you get a scooped muff type thing, more "open" sound from noon-2:00. I found a preference at around maybe 10:30-11 for the time being. It doesn't clean up as quickly/fully as a fuzz face, but with the gain at around 2:00 or less, you can get it pretty clean if you're dialing your vol knob way back. There are a lot of great and useful in-between sounds. Dialing the vol knob back gives those great/wierd koto-like tones that I dig and use a lot, very fun and responds to pick/finger attack. I spent a lot of time playing around with those. ;)

    The Ge side is where you'll get gated sounds with the gain knob or your vol knob rolled back.

    Mixing them is where it's at, of course. You've got almost any recipe you like available. The phase switch does some interesting stuff, interacts with flanger/phaser in some unique ways, and is brighter.

    This is a pretty cursory review, lots more exploring to do, but really looking forward to that based on what's come out of it so far! :beer
     
  2. johnetone

    johnetone Member

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    Jesus @friend33 that sounds ah May zing! I love what your doing with the Mood too. Blissings!
     
  3. Flatscan

    Flatscan Supporting Member

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    I spent 1.5 hours with the G4 today (maybe 2.5 hours total; warm Maz and PAFs).

    Preliminary thoughts:

    * It is a fun, deep pedal. There are many, many cool tones. I didn't find any "bad" tones.
    - I found myself enjoying the pedal immediately upon "lift off."

    * The control layout is intuitive and easy to navigate.
    - The phase switch is a "more" switch for intermodulation. Set to taste.
    - The ability to have more or less intermodulation should grow appeal for those seeking less traditional tones.
    - Depending on phase setting and pick attack, the G4 can tolerate an array of chords of varying complexity. It doesn't all have to be single-note stuff appreciating that it can be more or less "splatty."
    - I find myself preferring a mid-mix of Ge and Si to a mix favoring Si while still preserving some Ge. This may be because of placement which I haven't worked through yet. [The G4 was after my phaser and Saturn V but before any buffers.]

    * Spaceman DNA is Spaceman DNA and this is clearly a Spaceman pedal.
    - Bass from Spaceman pedals always sounds like it's "purring" (think cat) to me. I love that. The G4 does not disappoint here.
    - Spaceman pedals seem to maintain top-end well vs. many other fuzzes. Here it is frequently articulate and crispy. I rarely felt like I was swimming in mud.
    - Appreciating the range of EQ preserved, rich harmonic complexity is apparent (common Spaceman theme).
    - I a/b'd with the SpaceRocket at length and found many similar sounds especially when the phase switch was set appropriately. Summary: the SpaceRocket is consistently more aggro and has a different note sustain. The overlap, while real, didn't offend.


    So far, so good. We'll see how I feel in three months...
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2019
  4. AXXA

    AXXA Supporting Member

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    I had another go today with a different guitar, and I definitely prefer the reverse phase settings. Both sides are cool, but mixed is best for me. I get more impact that way, which is what I generally want. Subtlety hides around every corner if you look for it though.

    Sadly, my Twin is in a storage unit. I should be setting up shop again next month though. I’m really thinking the GIV will be extra nice through the Twin
     
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  5. Gallery

    Gallery Supporting Member

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    So tonight I did what I do whenever I get a new fuzz...

    Fuzz shoot out!



    I will say, the Stomp Under Foot Sonic Generator gets surprisingly close to the Gemini when compared to the way I’ve been setting my Gemini. If you like the Gemini, but want a fuzz that gets smoother in a more muff-ish way with more mids, try the Sonic Generator. Both are keepers for me and may end up next to each other on the same board.
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2019
  6. flyingmusicman

    flyingmusicman Member

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    How do you like the Ayahuasca? (Pedal)
     
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  7. Gallery

    Gallery Supporting Member

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    It’s pretty sick. It’s not an easy fuzz to dial in and you really need to utilize the modulation (tremolo) section combined with the fuzz to get the most out of its unique fuzz sounds. It’s a fuzz that you really need to approach with an unbiased mindset with the intention of creating unique tones because nothing about it is typical or standard. I was unhappy with it at first until I accepted that nothing about it was traditional and that I needed to appreciate it for what it was... a fuzzed modulation instead of a modulated fuzz. But now I love it.
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2019
  8. hippieboy

    hippieboy Member

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    how do you rank those fuzzes?
     
  9. flyingmusicman

    flyingmusicman Member

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    Cool, thanks! :)
     
  10. Phineas Ball

    Phineas Ball Fuzz Silver Supporting Member

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    You ever have one of those ideas... you know it's a bad idea and yet, like the tide, you simply cannot resist?

    That's what this is. G IV all the way (except bass).



    David, that's just killer.
     
  11. Gallery

    Gallery Supporting Member

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    Ranking purely as a fuzz and not considering the added features of the Royal Jelly, Ayahuasca or Brothers, my top 3 fuzzes are:
    Stomp Under Foot Sonic Generator
    Analogman RCA Sunface
    Spaceman Gemini IV

    Sonic Generator is probably my all-time favorite, but the RCA option really bumped the Sunface up the list. I’m finding the Gemini is quickly becoming a favorite too.
     
  12. jfwund

    jfwund Member

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    Got a little time to crank up the amp a bit and try out the pedal. This is definitely a unique fuzz with a whole bunch of usable sounds - can get a "splatty" or even "crumbly" top end on it. Difficult to smooth out - I might still need to get a muff-type pedal for that - but I've found a few cool sounds here: a velcro-y gated type fuzz, a glitchy, almost octave-y fuzz, and a roaring fuzzy mess (in a good way). Very musical pedal, I'm digging it thus far...
     
  13. Gallery

    Gallery Supporting Member

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    The one thing that really struck about the Gemini in my fuzz shoot out was the clarity. The overall clarity of the fuzz and the clarity between notes is great for a gated splatty fuzz like this. While the gate or starving of the Ge side can certainly cancel out notes, it never gets muddy.
     
  14. Johnny Fuzz

    Johnny Fuzz Member

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    My Gemini IV arrived today. I have to admit, it’s better than I expected! I can’t get nothing but cool sounds out of it. Very versatile and user friendly. I rarely go for ”versatile” fuzzes - I usually use very specific ones for very specific sounds. But this one really seems to have a ton of useful secrets inside itself. Having a blast learning this pedal and trying out different things.
     
  15. Phineas Ball

    Phineas Ball Fuzz Silver Supporting Member

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    That was one of those early MTV songs that my friends and I couldn't wait to hear again. Say what you will about Journey - and I've said plenty of disparaging things in my time - Steve Perry' pipes and phrasing and power were just unreal.

    I have not had a chance to crank the G IV up to needs-earplugs volume, so my experience is bigly incomplete, but my impression thus far is that it is not as expressive as some of my favorite fuzzes. Notes bloom, yes, but in a crisp rather than sticky way. It's voiced quite differently than my GIII (not a problem, just a fact) - it's in general more sizzly than its older cousin.

    Definitely looking forward to a deeper dive.
     
  16. ubenjammin2

    ubenjammin2 Member

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    Finally got to spend more than 15 minutes with the Gemini IV so here's another clip for you demo happy space cadets.

     
  17. Narwhal0514

    Narwhal0514 Member

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    Cool sounds, man!

    Also, I loooove that Gem III in white :)
     
  18. ubenjammin2

    ubenjammin2 Member

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    If I hadn't snagged a chrome I was definitely going to go for the white Gemini IV
     
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  19. Phineas Ball

    Phineas Ball Fuzz Silver Supporting Member

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    Whattaya think of the diff between the III and IV?

    For my part, I'd say:

    1. The IV is higher gain, no question. Higher at low gain, way higher at high gain.
    2. The III is warmer at every setting. The IV cuts more at every setting.
    3. The IV is more "modern" sounding. The III is more "vintage" sounding.
    - which is only partially another way of describing brightness. It's also a texture thing. The IV really sizzles.
    4. The IV is "finer grained." The III is more raspy.
    5. The IV blooms more obviously. Both bloom much more when blended 50/50. I wonder if that's a phase-related phenomenon.
    6. I think the IV sounds better with single-coils than it does with humbuckers. I have no opinion on this topic re: III.

    At this early stage I prefer the III, although to be fair it's spent most of my ownership in the closet rather than on the board; it's not one of my go-to fuzzes.
     
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  20. ubenjammin2

    ubenjammin2 Member

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    Basically agree with all of this. I'd say the III cleans up better so it's a little more dynamic with the way it breaks up while the IV like you said has more bloom to it. There is a LOT to like about the IV. Its still to early for me to say which I prefer but my gut is telling me I may find more places to use the IV. Making the III cut through a dense mix was always a slight challenge (one that a good treble booster can solve)
     
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