which fuzz for e.j. tone

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by bullet69, Dec 29, 2005.


  1. bullet69

    bullet69 Member

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    which fuzz is the best for the eric johnson tone. i have done a search and came up with confusing results. should i go with a silicone or germanium fuzz.
    any advice will be apreciated.
     
  2. Curt

    Curt Member

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    You want an original Germanium Fuzz Face. In lieu of that, get an Analogman Sunface. Great pedal!
     
  3. Serious Poo

    Serious Poo Armchair Rocket Scientist Graffiti Existentialist Gold Supporting Member

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    +1 on the fuzz face. It's what EJ uses. However... You might also want to check out the Fulltone 70's pedal - it's the same circuit EJ used around the time he recorded Venus Isle.
     
  4. LReese

    LReese Member

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    Interviews I have read said EJ uses silicon due to temperature stability.

    From the Analogman.com site:
    "
    Update 10/05 : We have been making silicon sunfaces and mods for a few years, we finally got around to putting the info up on this website. We are using old BC108 transistors which are the best of the old 1970 silicon type, as used in Eric Johnson's old red fuzzface.
    "


    It may be easier to get close to the tone with germanium as the tone is darker.
     
  5. MrMunky

    MrMunky Member

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    I would suggest a fuzz face clone, but not necessarily an original fuzz face. The originals varied widely from unit to unit, and while any one of them will cost $500+ regardless of what is inside, the overwhelming likelihood is that the tone will be underwhelming.

    That said, there are a number of fantastic clones out there. I'm certainly no Eric Johnson, but the Fuzz tones that I've found to sound closest to him come from Fuzz Faces that use BC109C Silicon transistors. These tend to afford substantially more gain than their germanium counterparts, and they clean up well.

    Even among silicon fuzz faces there is considerable variation. My impression is that Dave Fox got the closest with the Crest Audio Fuzz Face that he made in the 1980s. His current production Fuzzfoot, available in the CC2 and soon as a standalone is very close, more versatile, and quiet.

    On a tighter budget, the euthymia crucible fuzz is very good, as is the more difficult to find MJM London Fuzz II.

    The powers that be won't let me post clips here, but if you want to hear some clips of these, visit http://inrerocknroll.blogspot.com
     
  6. bullet69

    bullet69 Member

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    so i guess silicone then?
     
  7. Colt

    Colt Member

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    Analogman NKT-275 Sunface....and i'd get a sundial for the temperature reliability..........
     
  8. Angle Loss

    Angle Loss Supporting Member

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    If you are looking specifically for EJ tone, then you will need a Silicon Fuzz Face (or clone). Try getting one and either run it into a slightly overdriven amp like he does or into a light overdrive. The fuzz into a clean amp won't get you there. I use a Timmy after my homebuilt fuzz face and it helps smooth it out and gives a little extra compression. You'll need a little bit of delay as well, and a whole lot of practice and attention to how you touch the strings and pick.

    To be specific though, he does use a Silicon fuzz face not Germanium. Both sound good, just different though. Also, try messing with the gain on the fuzz face as it changes the tone as well. Backing it off to about 3/4 fattens it up a bit. Good luck!
     
  9. Hamilton

    Hamilton Active Member

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    Eric uses silicon Fuzz Faces. The other key to his sound is the Marshall amp. Don't expect to run a fuzz into any other type of amp to get his sound. Any 4 input type Marshall circuit with a Si Fuzz Face will get you close..... Oh, and then you'll need his set of hands. :)

    Hamilton
     
  10. jero

    jero Member

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    Exactly, silicon FF into overdriven Marshall(esque) amp. Don't expect to sound like EJ with a silicon FF into a clean Fender Twin Reverb.
     
  11. pacomc79

    pacomc79 Member

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    It's important to consider the amp/guitar and the volume level as fuzzes are so damned picky.

    The Fulltone 69 or 70 might get you there depending on setup I think EJ uses those, but without a plexi style amp it won't really approach that exact tone.
     
  12. bullet69

    bullet69 Member

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    thats what is confusing when i have seen pics of his pedal board it has a red fuzz face on it and i thought those were germanium but everything i have read says he uses silicone in fact that fulltone 70 is supposed to be a copy of erics pedal.
     
  13. Rid

    Rid Senior Member

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    Chicago Iron Octavian...that fuzz is that old sound, makes one wonder what all the rest really was all about;)
    And get a Tycho Brahe ringmodulator in the same box as well.
     
  14. AnthonyL

    AnthonyL Silver Supporting Member

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    I asked Eric about this once and he did tell me that he uses the silicon, BUT he only runs a fuzz into a plexi with 6L6 tubes, not EL 34's. His Tube Driver goes into an plexi with EL 34's, but def not the fuzz.
     
  15. GuitarBrent

    GuitarBrent Member

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    That's why my Rt66 with Analog Man NKT Sunface will cop that browned out EJ fuzz tone to a "T". :JAM :moon :AOK
     
  16. GuitarBrent

    GuitarBrent Member

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    I would guess that EJ doesn't crank the fuzz if he's using silicone FF's, since the gain from his fuzz isn't really more than my NKT with the gain cranked.
     
  17. guitarhurricane

    guitarhurricane Member

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    EJ only runs the fuzz face into amps with 6l6s from what I have seen. He uses the 50w marshall trem head with 6l6s for it right now. In the past he has used the dumble or even ran it into the twin reverbs he had mounted into showman heads. I read an interview where he said it was ran into the dumble or the twin. The fender amps actually work better than you would think for the fuzz tone. You just have to be very cautious with the bass. He also ran them through the 4x12 cabs which helps.

    The fulltone '70 is a great pedal for the EJ tone with the right setup. Part of the way of getting there is the tone knob needs to be rolled back on the pickup and the top end on the amp has to be very controlled.
    He seems to run the fuzz knob about 2 o'clock, but it depends so much on the fuzz face. They vary so much. I have one that has a ton of great fuzz and had one that you had to run all the way up to get much fuzz from it. Even with the same type trannies they vary a ton.
     

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