steel string supreme - a thread (Re: new statements from Mason/vertex)

pickdropper

I am Soldering Iron Man
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7,270
Why are you sure?

Most celebrities work to protect their images, and they get paid to provide explicit or implied endorsements of products. I'm a nobody, and I wouldn't let Mason, a known scammer, use my name or image, along with his exaggerated claims, to promote his products.

Oh, never mind, you said he could care less. Makes more sense now.
I'm pretty sure that he does care about that sort of thing in general, although I have no idea if he does in relation to this particular situation.
 

guy8string

Member
Messages
455
Mason’s Greatest Hits Scams?
1.) BBE wah scam
2.) Belden cable scam
*3.) Dynamic Distortion SD9 scam (hat tip @Jim Marciano )
4.) RACKDOCTOR affair
5.) “I’ve got a EE from Berkeley“
6.) “Berkeley d/c’d their EE program”
7.) Bonamassa affair
8.) “I modeled this pedal after the Dumble” (not a Dumble in video)
9.) “I modeled this pedal after a Dumble” (actually a Jack Orman circuit design)
10.) rinse, lather, repeat without remorse
 
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dreamingaxe

Member
Messages
824
There's just so much about this that's hilarious. They stole the trade dress that Mason stole off of Dumble. They're gonna undercut his price. The graphics are partly covered by the knobs, so it's not even a great physical copy. Long live the NUX Steel Singer!!!!

Darn, they're out of stock. But yeah, $50!!! Thats about right for a Mu-Amp in a box with a tone circuit.
exactly. I dont mind the substandard parts or whatever. The ironic thing is, Vertex got copied after copying someone else’s work, and that alone makes me wanna buy it. Lololol
 

bean

Silver Supporting Member
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1,061
this is what Mason says about the Steel String vs: Jack Orman AMZ Boost

"You're right that some have contested that the Steel String is a direct copy of a circuit already in existence designed by Jack Orman (one of the "Godfathers" of analog effects pedals). The fact is, there ARE similarities between Orman's circuit and our Steel String pedal. Also (fact), the differences between these circuits are significant to the extent that most engineers or technicians with any objectivity would call them ostensibly "different" pedals - different component choices, different values, etc. The fact is, the Steel String is no more a copy of Orman's circuit than it is of any variation of twenty other circuits. It is the variations that can make one pedal so different from another - it is not the same sound and in the end (for practical purposes) is not the same design. The fact is, all values in the Steel String are different from the Orman circuit and the variable resistors (8 controls on the SSS compared to Orman's single volume control), number of knobs and toggles, and on the SSS it's an entire different output section with another circuit being added to the original Steel String and a second footswitch. The fact is, there is nothing in our design or in Orman's that had not been done before. Orman's circuit puts two different previous well known and widely used circuits together and gave it a name. This "mix-and-match" of circuits is ubiquitous and unavoidable across the pedal industry if you're in the business of analog distortion pedals. In this case clear back to the Application Notes in a National Semiconductors catalogue. The fact is, there are very few "new" design ideas out there, so we're all bound to tread on common ground no matter which direction we go. The Steel String series of pedals was designed to sound like a Dumble Steel String Singer - an amp we borrowed from a client of ours to accurately voice the pedal - just like we did the Dumble ODS and the Ultraphonix. We used the amp alongside a few different common circuit archetypes that we thought would approximate the sound. As we did listening sessions between the Dumble and the various circuits that we were tweaking to emulate it, we thinned the herd to the closest variations. I've never said that the Steel String is a ground breaking electronics feat, or that it was an original design, there are no real original designs when it comes to analog distortion devices. For the Steel String, we ended up with was a MuFET circuit that almost identically replicated the sound of a Dumble Steel String Singer using the pedal through a 2x12 Fender Hot Rod DeVille. This is the only claim I've made, same as a Marshall in a Box pedal maker might say their pedal most closely resembles a Marshall Plexi. Everything on the Steel String pedals is all fully open for you to inspect for yourself and ID similarities between it any any other circuit if you have that ability yourself. If you have any sort of foundation in electronics, you'll understand how far back using MuFET's goes back and what I'm doing goes clear back to the late 60's or early 70's with guys like Craig Anderton and the National Semiconductors app notes. Guys have parsed this dozens of different ways over time, including Jack Orman. I buy some of Jack's stuff off his site for little kits and buffer implants for adding into certain pedals to stabilize their outputs for pedalboard applications. I'm buying in my company name, company Paypal account, business address, etc. Even exchanged some emails with him about discount pricing on his PCB kits. I've never once heard a word from him about any impropriety in any of my dealings or expressing any similarities between any pedal of ours resembling his. I suspect it's not even on his radar, and if it were, he understands he didn't invent the MuFET or using them to create distortion."

View attachment 300131
There is no such circuit or device called a "muFET". There a is a muAMP which happens to use FETs. The circuit design doesn't apply exclusively to FETs. But that's hair splitting.

In any case everything else he says is pretty bang on. Is it a guitar pedal that uses analog circuitry with discrete components? Then it's based on something already done most likely. There isn't any innovation left to do. Everything now is simply application and modification of what's been done plus branding.
 

tonedover

This Is Fine.
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5,959
What little guy is he stomping on?
I’m sure you’re making the world a better place by not buying from a certain pedal company, that’s big stuff man! Be proud! :D
the global problem is not in the guitar industry, let’s be clear with that first off. You all are out here getting hilariously upset at a supposed conman. All you’re doing is giving him free press! If he’s so terrible then don’t give him the satisfaction of having his name on your mouth.
meh. you’re either a troll or not playing with a full 52.

have a good life, bud.
 

drbob1

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
27,581
There is no such circuit or device called a "muFET". There a is a muAMP which happens to use FETs. The circuit design doesn't apply exclusively to FETs. But that's hair splitting.

In any case everything else he says is pretty bang on. Is it a guitar pedal that uses analog circuitry with discrete components? Then it's based on something already done most likely. There isn't any innovation left to do. Everything now is simply application and modification of what's been done plus branding.
You, of all people, understand the details of all this. Still, it appears it was Jack that took the idea of a mu-amp from a tube manual and was able to adapt it to transistors. You don't always have to hark back to where things came from, but it's a classy move. I'm not so upset about that, though, as the fact that it's a simple Mu-amp pedal with an output level control and a low pass filter and it's $200?
 

bean

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,061
You, of all people, understand the details of all this. Still, it appears it was Jack that took the idea of a mu-amp from a tube manual and was able to adapt it to transistors. You don't always have to hark back to where things came from, but it's a classy move. I'm not so upset about that, though, as the fact that it's a simple Mu-amp pedal with an output level control and a low pass filter and it's $200?
Oh yeah I'm not saying Mason's statements are beyond criticism or critique. I guess my inner cynic is in full force tonight. Jack's contribution to diy has been on display in the commercial side of pedal making forever. His contribution to DIY is immeasurable. Just this week I was looking for a solution to a problem and there it was on muzique :)
 

therhodeo

Member
Messages
9,986
What little guy is he stomping on?
I’m sure you’re making the world a better place by not buying from a certain pedal company, that’s big stuff man! Be proud! :D
the global problem is not in the guitar industry, let’s be clear with that first off. You all are out here getting hilariously upset at a supposed conman. All you’re doing is giving him free press! If he’s so terrible then don’t give him the satisfaction of having his name on your mouth.
For the record in nearly every vertex thread someone pops up and says they don't know the history and now they know not to buy from him. That's one more person not buying a joke of a product from that guy and that's enough for me.
 

Jim Marciano

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,606
Mason’s Greatest Hits Scams?
1.) BBE wah scam
2.) Belden cable scam
3.) RACKDOCTOR affair
4.) “I’ve got a EE from Berkeley
5.) “Berkeley d/c’d their EE program”
6.) Bonamassa affair
7.) “I modeled this pedal after the Dumble” (not a Dumble in video)
8.) “I modeled this pedal after a Dumble” (actually a Jack Orman circuit design)
9.) rinse, lather, repeat without remorse
Don't forget the dynamic distortion/sd9

https://www.thegearpage.net/board/i...tex-visits-andertons-uk.1992038/post-27483798
 

folsommd

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
37
Watched his sweetwater video for the new pedal. Just reeks of snake oil salesman vibes. Could be wrong but might be a tool.
 

Jim Marciano

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,606
I consider myself pretty hip to the Masoning of the guitar pedal industry and I don’t think I’d heard of that one. Maybe save it for the Odds and Sods?
I wasn't on tgp when it happened but I remember him selling axis wahs for 100 bucks on eBay that he bought back from people are read the apology then the next thing I heard was the DD was being portrayed as his own design
 

sonichronic

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,045
What little guy is he stomping on?
I’m sure you’re making the world a better place by not buying from a certain pedal company, that’s big stuff man! Be proud! :D
the global problem is not in the guitar industry, let’s be clear with that first off. You all are out here getting hilariously upset at a supposed conman. All you’re doing is giving him free press! If he’s so terrible then don’t give him the satisfaction of having his name on your mouth.
ahahah I forgot about this one!
https://www.thegearpage.net/board/i...tex-visits-andertons-uk.1992038/post-27483798

thanks @Jim Marciano
 

Sencha

Member
Messages
304
I don't like to pop anyone's bubble, but outside of TGP and some other forums the whole Vertex controversy has long been forgotten or -which is even worse- most of his customers simply aren't aware of it. I see this all the time in other forums and in several larger Facebook groups.

I found it very telling when he did a livestream with Zappata (Gary Clark Jr. band) a viewer asked Zappata how he felt about the whole wah fiasco. Apparently, he hadn't heard about it before.
Yeah, I was very disappointed to see Zapata using his stuff. Then I also saw Isaiah Sharkey was as well and David Ryan Harris has a Vertex boost on his board. It's creeping toward John Mayer. Who I guess is Masons ultimate goal.
Makes me want to vomit, metaphorically of course.
 

C-4

Member
Messages
13,533
UPDATE:
I copy/pasted some claims (including screenshots) Mason made about the use of the board he commissioned from LA Sound Design then advertised it as his work on his website.
also some statements about the Steel String being a AMZ FZ Jack Orman boost, AND the use of the FAKE Dumble in his Ultraphonics video. all this is on the first page below.

I'm just gonna leave this here..



+EDIT
no I'm not a vertex supporter, I just want to know what people think about ANOTHER SSS pedal?
homeboy Mason is once again using name drops he is far from associating with to sell product.
normally, I'd say this is rather harmless. countless builders hint at Gilmour to Hendrix influence in their pedals but... when Mason does it, it's straight up sleazy. Though now that I think about it Gilmour did send HIWATT a cease and desist and I'm sure if you used Hendrix's likeness without permission you could get some letters. it's not like he's using Mayers name on the actual pedal. Though he did use SRV's initials on a version of the Ultraphonix but calling it the 'Slight Return Version'.

what about these Guitar influencers who sling for him? What do Rhett and Gabriel think about the time Mason lied about; his engineering degree, working for BBE and designing the ben wah (not to bring up the Ben Wah debacle, because his BS in this community goes way beyond that), or when he took a board made by LA Sound Design then slapped Vertex stickers on it and advertised it as his own work on his website... or when he used a Dumble ODS CLONE in place of the real thing in his Ultraphonix shootout then when he was called out about it he just deleted comments when faced with the proof... or when he claimed the Steel String circuit was his own when it's just a Jack Orman AMZ FX Boost (again if you people who think this is about 'clones' come to the table with the 'everything is a clone' argument... DUH! but they don't hide it and call it their own unique circuit! infact Analogman actually credits Robbie Wallace and Jack Orman for the Bad Bob Boost and licensed it!

one could go on...
I just feel like every time there is a new Vertex pedal... the public should know about the mans previous work.
DISCLAIMER: don't get me wrong. I'm all for rehabilitation and people changing/learning. Mason has NOT done that. His post-Vertex/BBE Wah discretions almost equal the sh*t-human actions he displayed during the Wah debacle. He continues to play victim as if the gear community turned against him for no reason.

QUESTIONS!
#1 why do you think this man can't get a clue and dig himself out of this hole? even smart sociopaths know how to fake compassion.

#2 referring to Rhett and Gabriel... & other guitar influencers? how do you justify supporting such a piece of crap human?
(since Rhett and Gabriel will not respond...how do you think they justify this?) why associate your brand with such a sketchy man?

I'm not familiar with this person, Mason, but after reading this thread, I would totally ignore anything he said, even if he was the best guitar player, with the best tone in the world.

First of all, I'm smart enough not to need anything he says to get a tone I desire, and the tools used to get that tone. I believe a lot of players here are easily capable of doing the same thing and probably are satisfying their tonal search on their own, or at least without this guy.

I listen to, and watch a lot of videos based on player's recommendations from this forum and take some of the recommendations seriously enough to buy the unit being shown and talked about, but when dealing with liars, I found it best not to believe anything he says, as one may not be able to pick out the lies from the truth. ;)
 
Messages
3,101
Yeah, I was very disappointed to see Zapata using his stuff. Then I also saw Isaiah Sharkey was as well and David Ryan Harris has a Vertex boost on his board. It's creeping toward John Mayer. Who I guess is Masons ultimate goal.
Makes me want to vomit, metaphorically of course.
He played the wah back in the day live on one of the night time talk shows IIRC.
 

DewieCox

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,495
I guess when you can’t really get quality endorsers to stick around around you just go for a lot of guys nobody has ever heard of.
 

juxtapolice

Member
Messages
920
There is a legitimate disconnect between the guitar communities. Rhett, Dan & Mick, etc, I'd be hardpressed to believe they ever go on this forum. That said, it's not an excuse but a problem that needs addressing. In many ways, imo, TGP has de- legitimated itself from the avalanche of attacks on Mason and others; even though it's warranted, it seems the more information you spread in rapidity the less weight it carries and more suspicious people become (sign of the times I suppose). Now people actively go out of their way to avoid this thread and any information on it, including useful information. Where does that leave us? Idk but I know it's a problem. Unless a credited YouTube or public figure in the niche guitar world addressed it head on, like Landau years back, it'll continue to fall on deaf ears and Mason will find ways to sustain himself.
Also, I've mentioned this before, but he intentionally targets the sideman/up n coming, player since he knows they'd be less likely to turn down a free board build and the extra exposure; YouTube is a business after all and making it, whatever that means, Is a tough enterprise. That doesn't mean we ought to cut Rhett slack, I believe most of all he knows what he's getting into, but I do understand the game that's at play there.
Ultimately I don't think Mason's model is sustainable, but like any other con he'll keep morphing and dodging to make sure he survives.
 




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