Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Black Cat OD1 Overdrive

Info from the manufacturer about their original:

The Black Cat OD-1 (a.k.a. Freddie Fuzz) is an original design Fred created based on the unique properties of the OP275, a dual operational amplifier chip made by Analog Devices. The OP275 is a high-quality op-amp that gives a distinctive linear output waveform. The Black Cat OD-1 can go from clean, to slightly crunchy, to all-out saturated distortion. It is unique in that it is extremely sensitive to the guitar; it responds to the player's pick attack, and like a good Fuzz Face, it cleans up well when you roll back the volume on the guitar. The Black Cat OD-1 has been used by Scott Henderson, Steve Lukather, Beck, Lyle Workman, Kyle Cook (Matchbox Twenty), and many others.






39 comments:

  1. man, you guys are starting the new year off with a bang!! on this one, the layout says 15x9, but maybe should read 15x10? also, is the value of the 430R resistor critical, or can i sub it with a close value? thanks guys, keep up the good work!!

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    1. Well spotted, it was a test and you won! :o) No the 430R isn't critical, use anything around there, preferably lower so 390R would probably be a good choice

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  2. you can tag this one verified. a nice easy build that sounds really good to my ear. i've been playing around with this and a tele through an old champ and it goes from bluesy to crunchy and seems to be usable at every setting i've tried. i like it.

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    1. Excellent, nice one matey. First verification of 2013! :o)

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  3. I'm a bit late, but yeah, it works fine and.... fits in a 1590A! Tried it with two B pots, so, the behaviour is not natural, but the sound is really cool.

    I'll order now two log 9mm alpha's to Mammoth, hope next week I can box this effect.

    BR

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  4. Sounds good with jrc4558 to if you havnt got a op275

    Gpm

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    1. I've tried with a NE5532 and a AD712. Sound great with both, maybe better and more round sound with the AD, but don't forget that this is a very expensive hifi opamp. I'm waiting some Tayda's OP275 to come, so I'll be able to let you know if I find noticeable differences.

      BR

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  5. Gold star for Atomicwombat, perhaps!? If I had picked up a soldering iron today I think I would have lost an eye!!

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  6. hahaha! that would be my first gold star in like 25 years!! and i do some of my best work with a few beers in me! of course, i do some of my worst work with a few more in me, so its a good thing i get up early!

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  7. Have just built this with a OP275 and works just as in the video. It is also worth watching this viseo as well for more detail http://youtu.be/3_F66Mev7oA. I used a linear pot on the volume which has worked fine but you do need a log on the gain.

    This is well worth the build.

    Thanks Mark and Miro.

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  8. Well, the 6th Dwarf is here:

    http://img213.imageshack.us/img213/3996/blackcatok.jpg

    Still have not received the OP275, so have to use still de NE5532. Sounds great anyway.

    Tomorro I hope to finish the FuzzRong, to be able to build the Hyperion on Sunday, busy weekend :P

    BR

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  9. Just to comment, that I always forget to tell it:

    -There's little mistake on the links and cuts image: 1st link should be on 2nd column, not third, I could see it the hard way :P

    - The vero is 15x10, but the ninth row is useless, so you can just ommit it and still no nedd to place the 100k resistor standind-up (every mm counts when building in a 1590A :P)

    BR

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    1. I've corrected the link. I originally had this as 15 x 9 but it meant the bottom 100K resistor would have needed to be either a 1/8W or standing so I increased it a row. I bought a set of 1/8W resistors specifically for 3 row spans, but not everyone will have them and so I will still avoid doing it if I can, as long as it doesn't make the layout awkwardly large.

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  10. Hi. Could this be run at 18v if the caps can take it?

    Cheers.

    Mark.

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    1. Having tried this at 18v the fuzz/overdrive character is not dirty enough for my taste - is sounds more like a cheap multi-effect. So sticking with 9v.

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  11. Received today (finally! don't know what happens lately with Singapore Post, is the third order I get from Tayda that takes more than a month) the lot of OP275s (great price by the way, not even 1 euro /piece with 15% coupon).

    If this effect did sound awesome with the NE5532, with the OP275 is just superb. This OD is really a must, just miss a tone knob.

    Anyway, imho, one of the best overdrives I've ever tried, and is really easy to build. A really enjoyable pedal by all means.

    BR

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  12. I just finished this one. It sounds great. Sort of a Leslie West / Mountain sound. I used a 470R for the 430R but other than that bone stock. Have to wait until tomorrow to open it up. Thanks for the hard work

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  13. I just built this one today. IMO, it's a dark sounding overdrive with a fizzy note decay so it's definitely not my cup of tea at all. its biggest strength is that it does clean up well with the instrument's volume control, but I still find it to be just meh. I also tried it at 18V but IMO, it doesn't benefit from running it at a higher voltage. to give it some highs, I ran a Cornish buffer in front of it and it did yield a lot more clarity in the top end, but it also lost some low end. i'm thinking of changing a few of the coupling caps to higher values and then running the Cornish in front of to see if I can get both the top end and low end out of it.

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  14. I revisited my build of this one and tried 20 different types of opamps in it.(BTW, this circuit has actually been around for a long time under various names). the earlier ones used an LM1458 instead of a an OP275. not being too thrilled with it's dark sound and fizzy note decay, I tried 20 different opamps in mine tonight (LF353N, LF358N, OPA2134, JRC4558D & DD, JRC4580D, JRC4559D , JRC4562, LM833N, OPA2604, NE5532, LM1458, HA1458, OP275, LM258, LM2904, MC4558P, etc) and found the OPA 2604 to solve the note decay issue and sound the best. It actually makes the pedal a tiny bit darker than some of the other chips, so I changed the 100p cap to a 12p, and the last 220p to a 200p one and the pedal is great now. it now has more top end that the original circuit and has no fizzy note decay.

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    1. Can you tell me some of the other names this has been marketed as?

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  15. This thing has too much gain for me but I love the tones. Is there a resistor I can change to pull it back a bit? I get that I can turn the gain dial down, just thought there would be a way to permanently knock it down a notch. Thanks for the great veros!

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    1. Just wanted to add that I don't know heaps about IC workings but at a guess the 470k is the one I need to modify but not sure in which direction if that's the case. :)

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    2. Reduce the 470K resistor, that sets the gain for the first opamp channel. It may be worth replacing it with a 470K trimmer so you can fine tune it to the setting you want, but still allowing you to pump up the gain in the future if you feel the need.

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    3. Brilliant, thanks so much :)

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  17. My build works and sounds great but I feel it is a little too bassy. What would you suggest as a good way to tackle this? Perhaps swapping the 220p cap for one of a lower value?

    Any suggestions are greatly appreciated!

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    1. No I don't think that will affect anything. The 100p at the other side could be reduced but I think the best way would be to lower the 100n input cap which will reduce the bass going into the circuit at the start.

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    2. Sorry to ask another silly question but can you confirm that the input cap is the one just to the left top corner of the IC?

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  18. Sounds like a plan, thanks again for replying. What sort of value would you recommend?

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    1. I'd say socket it, then you can fine tune it to your own gear, but I'd be tempted to start at 47n and go from there

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    2. That's great, mate. Thanks a lot for your help!

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  19. Hey IVlark.You mentioned about reducing the 100nf cap to a lower value to lower the bass.Are you talking about the 100nf cap the 2nd from the left on the layout?Just wanted to make sure if I had it right! :)

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    1. It is the 100n cap that spans row 2 and 4 with the bottom leg connected to the input wire on row 4. Sounds like that's the one you're pointing to.

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  21. Cool!I thought I had it right,just wanted to make sure.Thanks tinkercreak!

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  22. Is there a way to add a tone knob? I am thinking replacing the 100k between gain2 and ground with a 100k pot would work. Is that correct?

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