Dunlop Silicon Fuzz Face Mini Blue

Dunlop Silicon Fuzz Face Mini BlueDunlop Silicon Fuzz Face Mini Blue

The Dunlop Silicon Fuzz Face Mini Blue is a modern design of the legendary Fuzz Face. As the name suggests, this pedal is housed in a much smaller package than its vintage bigger brother. This is a bright and aggressive pedal built with vintage spec matched BC108 silicon transistors. There are two knobs: Volume and Fuzz, which is where you’ll dial in your sound. Continue reading “Dunlop Silicon Fuzz Face Mini Blue”

Radial Engineering Tonebone TriMode Distortion

Radial Engineering Tonebone TriMode DistortionRadial Engineering Tonebone TriMode Distortion

As the name suggests, the Radial Engineering Tonebone TriMode Distortion has three modes of operation: True Bypass, which is designed to keep your signal clean and uncompromised on its way to the amplifier; Rhythm, where you can adjust the distortion, mid range, and output levels; and Solo, which optimizes your sound with increased control and sustain. Both overdrive modes make use of the built-in 12AX7 tube for that British overdrive tone, blending solid state gain stages for modern levels of saturation with the 12AX7 for vintage warmth. Each section has its own Level and Drive control as well as its own three-position Mid Boost switch. Continue reading “Radial Engineering Tonebone TriMode Distortion”

What are the Best Guitar Digital Reverb Pedals?

best guitar digital reverbLet’s take a look at a popular effect — reverb — and see if we can find a pedal that is a perfect fit for your style.

Reverb is one of the most important tools available to a musician. It allows you to actually change the landscape and the size of the environment that you are in. You can set it to sound as if you are close to a wall, far away from it, or without any walls at all. Reverb got its start with the plate reverb, which is a large metal plate with microphones attached to it, to create and pick up reverberations. The next type was the spring reverb that was built into many amplifiers, making it very popular and well known to guitar players.

Today, digital reverb is growing in use, as technology expands in the areas of analog-to-digital converters, resolution, sample rate, bit rate, etc. Modern digital reverbs can be significantly hi-tech and meticulously crafted, to sound like any type of reverb, natural or unnatural. They can make use of convolution reverb, which is impulse response models of actual rooms. Throughout countless hours of practice I was always grateful for spring reverb. Now we’ll look at a few of these digital pedals and see if any stand out.
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Boss RV-6

Boss RV-6Boss RV-6

The RV-6 is BOSS’s first new compact reverb pedal since 2002. The RV-6 offers eight different reverb effects and uses four control knobs to dial in your sound. The first control knob is the Effect Level and this allows you to adjust how much reverb is mixed with the dry signal. The Tone knob adjusts the brightness of the reverb, and the Time knobs adjust how long the reverb trails off. The last knob allows you to choose among the available reverbs. Continue reading “Boss RV-6”

What are the Best Budget Guitar Chorus Pedals?

budget buitar chorusBudget guitar chorus pedals — let’s talk about them, take a look at the classics, and see which one might provide you with the tone that you’re looking for

So, what we’re covering today are some selected budget chorus pedals, any one of which could be an asset to your collection. We’ll list some of the classic pedals that have proven themselves over time, as well as some modern products. Chorus is one of the oldest guitar effects that’s used to create a richer, thicker sound and add subtle movement to guitars, keyboards and bass. Continue reading “What are the Best Budget Guitar Chorus Pedals?”

MXR M234 Analog Chorus Guitar Effects Pedal

MXR M234 Analog Chorus Guitar Effects PedalMXR M234 Analog Chorus Guitar Effects Pedal

The M234 Analog Chorus is another very popular stomp-box created by MXR, a company that’s been making effects pedals since 1972. It’s a 100% pure analogue, and it uses a Bucket Brigade chip to delay the signal and create the warm, classic, chorus effect. This straightforward product gives you five control knobs to generate your own personal sound. Level sets the volume of the pedal and acts as the wet/dry mix. Continue reading “MXR M234 Analog Chorus Guitar Effects Pedal”

What is the Difference Between Germanium and Silicon Diodes in a Fuzz Pedal?

fuzz explanationGermanium vs Silicon? This is often an intensely debated topic. Learn the difference between these two types of diodes and how they affect your fuzz pedal’s tone.

Let’s talk about the difference between silicon and germanium transistors and what it means to guitar players and audio in general, especially fuzz.

The Fuzz Effect

Fuzz is a type of distortion that guitar players use. It is most often found in an effect pedal and it creates a buzzy tone that is associated with an overdriven amplifier or a torn speaker. Transistors play a vital part in the design of this effect and their silicon and germanium diodes can sound quite different in the final result.

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How does a Fuzz pedal work?

fuzz explanationYou’ve heard of Fuzz pedals, and probably used one. But do you know how they work?

Fuzz

Fuzz is a type of distortion that was originally marketed in the early 1960s as a device that you can use to emulate the sound of Orchestra instruments such as the Trumpet, Cello, Bassoon, Saxophone, etc. It was a Saxophone sound that Keith Richards wanted for the beginning of “Satisfaction,” that prompted him to try out a Fuzz pedal. It was also during this time that the Kinks, Link Wray, and many other early Rock & Roll and Blues guitar players reportedly punched holes in their speakers to get a fuzzy sound. You can hear a torn speaker in “Rocket 88” (the first Rock & Roll song), by Ike Turner and Jackie Brenston. Other notable songs from that time that feature Fuzz are “You Really Got Me,” by The Kinks and “Rumble,” by Link Wray. The aggressive Fuzz tone of this song actually caused people to feel fearful, so the song was banned from the radio.

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HBS Zoom G5 Guitar Multi-Effects & Amp Simulator

Zoom G5What do Dave Mustaine, Wayne Krantz and Eric Struthers all have in common? They are fans of the Zoom G5. Be careful… if you take a closer look at this multi-effects pedal, you might be too.

It’s amazing how multi-effect technology keeps on progressing. Zoom’s new G5 is yet another impressive unit that delivers an overwhelming amount of value and flexibility. I have to rave about one feature first: the multi-dimensional expression pedal. In addition to moving the pedal up and down, you can twist it to the right or left. Do the math…. yes, significantly expanded levels of expression and real-time parameter changes. The end result is that you can assign up to four parameters to the expression pedal. Nuts.
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