Saturday, 11 October 2014

EHX NYC Big Muff

Request.  Everyone knows what it is so I'll leave the description to Mike Matthews:

The NYC original. Hendrix and Santana were among the first to get a piece of the Pi, and for over 40 years the Big Muff Pi has been defining the sound of rock guitar. Revered by contemporary guitarists and rock legends for its rich, creamy, violin-like sustain, from Pink Floyd to The White Stripes, everyone still wants a piece of the Pi!








and the schematic used for the layout



47 comments:

  1. why????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    why are you doing this to me?!!!
    i already have 4 big muffs!
    enough is enough!
    i turned in to boxing my build last few weeks, but with this i'll start building again...!!!
    thanks man!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi, which Q (2 or 3) is referred to 1st and 2nd gain stage?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Q1 is the input stage
      Q2 is the first clipping stage
      Q3 is the second clipping stage
      Q4 is the recovery stage

      Delete
    2. Thanks so much. Keep up that work.

      Delete
  3. Replies
    1. I'm planning to. No idea when I'll get to it with everything else I want to build though.

      Delete
    2. look at the pharaoh. it's basically a modified big muff, and has a switch for Ge, Si, and no clipping diodes.

      Delete
    3. Thanks. Good idea to check out. Wonder why I didnt came up with it myself. I built it a while ago.

      Delete
  4. for your comming stomp;

    http://i60.tinypic.com/vn2gzb.png
    http://i58.tinypic.com/9fxspd.png

    ReplyDelete
  5. everyone still wants a piece of the Pi!
    jajajajajaj

    ReplyDelete
  6. Replies
    1. No idea :o)
      I've posted the schematic I did the layout from above

      Delete
    2. Yup. It is V9, which may have any of the following circuit board revisions:
      EC3003 (2000), EC3003A (2000), EC3003B (2007), EC3003C (2008), EC3003D (?), EC3003E (2013). From: http://www.kitrae.net/music/big_muff_history3.html
      +m

      Delete
    3. I'd say it's pretty typical for EHX to have the same effect with 6 revisions :) Collector's dream.
      +m

      Delete
    4. That's the designation EHX has given to "V9" circuit board design. All the EHX boards have some sort of designation code on them.
      +m

      Delete
    5. Thanks. I learned so much stuff from this forum. No honestly: this is a nice place and as i always say: this will be my LAST built.

      By the way: did anyone build the first ehx green russian layout. The one with that bunch oft electrolytics in it. Sounds like a reall angry troll with sustain for all eternity and back!

      Delete
    6. Just to clarify: This is the latest available version of the big box nyc big muff, and also the one inside the "tone wicker" model. NOT the V9 NYC "reissue" from 2000

      You can easily bring it back to a more standard nyc big muff by jumpering the extra cap (C16) before the tone section (never included in any other big muff, and noted on the schematic) and by changing the 2,2uf (C7) on the 2nd set of diodes to a 1uf (it's tradition that both caps connected to the diode sets are the same value (both 1uf in the reissue) but here they differ) Both very strange choices for the big muff circuit and the sound is a bit more bassy, sludgy and muffled. Still sounds big.

      This was my request, thanks alot!

      Delete
    7. That's exactly what i meant by "collector's dream". EHX is the most evil brand for anyone who collects factory made pedals. One person who has the authority (Kitrae, for a reason) to set widely used version numbers to different versions does use V9 as designation for all the big box revisions since 2000. I even think most people refer to "NYC Reissue" when talking about the current version..

      I think Mark could revise the layout for EC3003A and post it as NYC Reissue/LittleBMP/Nano :) I believe those are the only changes between the board revisions since 2000. Not sure if Little and/or nano have the same circuit as rev. A or rev. C though.

      Like i said. Evil brand.
      +m

      Delete
    8. miro. i think the little BMP is different then the normal one. i've heard that it's not all analog, but never really opened it up to see. i can tell the difference between the V9 and the little. the little BMP actually sounds a little less full, sorta smaller then the normal BMP, at least to my ears. it's not bad, just different. if you want, i can take some pics of the board top and bottom, as well as some readings for the caps and resistors if you want to get a working schematic and eventually a layout.

      Delete
  7. Great work!
    So far I only have built a civil war big muff and also a Screddy pink flesh, I may end up making a couple other flavors and this one to add to the pile LOL... Can never have too many muff variants in the pile! hahaha

    ReplyDelete
  8. Would a bc547b work in this layout? I'm not entirely well versed in reading the datasheet but, I'm trying to learn.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes they'll work. Different transistors may give you differences in response but they'll certainly work. The B transistors are generally lower gain than the C

      Delete
  9. Here's a mod for you.
    If you find the muff hissy, try putting a 1n314 germanium diode in parallel with d4.
    I've modded a few, I just soldered the 1n314 onto the legs of d4. Put it in the same orientation as d4

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The problem is that if you put a germanium diode in parallel with D4, you crete asimetrical clipping, and tame the Big Muff character, not just get tid of the hiss.

      And not for you, but for all "modders" that change this circuit to make it "better":

      A Big Muff is noisy, hissy and generates insane feedback, that's hor this effect works. If you don't like it, build some other pedal, or some ot the hundreds od clones that there are in the market. I've been ordered along the years for an insane amount of vintage speced BMPs, because they sound as they should, not "refined", "without noises", "no hissy" and so on.

      When you build a BMP with a modified gain stage, including asimetric clippin and germaniun diodes, you're not building a BMP but something different. I may sound OK, but is NOT a BMP.

      Regards

      Delete
    2. Like Mark often says: this is DIY, and for this you can do like it sounds good for you. I would go with the noise reduction mod too, at least for the green russian (first version) and the black one the result is great. My green russian sounds almost angry like before, but without any noise and a little less feedback. Didn´t know that with the 1n314 it is assymetrical clipping, but i thing the character is still the same. You can socket d4 and so here the difference.

      Delete
    3. Yes, this is DIY, but this is a BMP NYC, and this effect never have had asimetrical clipping in a stage, even less with a germanium diode.

      If you want to reduce the hiss, the usual way is to slightly increase the 470pf caps, not too much, becuase you'll lose some hights, no to change the clipping stage into an asimetrical one, besides with a germanium diode, with a 100% higher forward voltage and a more than noticeable volume drop. Just have to check the Cornish G2, or the Hoof, to see how a BMP circuit is changed into something that barely reminds the sound of the original pedal.

      If you want to reduce the background noise, you can play with the stability resistor and the filtering cap.

      Is different to say "Hey guys, a nice change to this pedal sound, is to place a germanium diode in parallel with d4, getting asimetrical clippin in the stage, so you'll get a smoother sound at the expense of lower volume, and besides, you'll get rid of some hiss" to "Hey, to reduce hiss, you just have to put a germanium diode in pararallel with D4" because this is WRONG information, and this change is not just to reduce the hiss.

      If you show to a good musician a pedal with this mod, he would tell you something like "Hey man, that sounds good, but this is not a Big Muff" Why do you think that many people prefer to pay someone big bucks in order to get a Triangle speced build instead of buyin' one of the million commercial clones that you can find on the market?.

      J.

      Delete
    4. Sorry I didn't mean to offend you guys. I thought maybe some folk would like this info.
      From what I see, people put up changes and mods here for others to learn from.
      Whether it be changing clipping diodes to LED's, or changing caps to get different tones.
      Yes I like to tinker with things. That, I find is a good way to learn.
      Like when my main drive pedal died, which was based on an MXR Distortion plus.
      I decided to take my MXR and do mods on it, to get it like my Blessed by Distortion.
      The MXR is unusable live i found, due to the volume drop. I done the Wampler mods, and it sounds better than stock, and my Blessed by.
      Anyway, try this if you want. If not, you're not missing much anyway.

      Delete
    5. You haven't offended anyone buddy, if you like building something a certain way then go for it. You should always try your own thing with these builds because you always have the potential to like the results more

      Delete
    6. agreed. i think all javi is saying is that changing component values can still keep the effect essentially the same as the original, but once you start to change things like the clipping section, you're actually changing the effect to something different. case in point, the HOOF or PHARAOH, are based off the big muff, but the changes made to them, clipping section, major transistor changes (the HOOF has 2 Ge transistors in place of Si), they have evolved into something new. it's not bad, just different. so i wouldn't call either of them BMP's anymore.

      it's an interesting mod, and super easy to try. so thanks for the idea. and yes, we all tinker with circuits a lot, and you can't be wrong about learning through modding. it's how i started getting into building. keep up the good work buddy.

      Delete
    7. I think I found it from Jim Photon (he posts here, that's not his name, but something like it). It came from my mate asking if i could quieten his. So I modded mine, and he a/b'd his and mine and wanted the mod done.
      I never even checked mine before and after to see the difference.
      If I'm doing mods I like to record it through me pc (less variables if it's DI'd) then a/b the results. Just my PC's not working just yet.
      I'm wanting to try find a mid control mod. I've seen folk make these, and as we know, muff's aren't very mid happy. That's why I have a switch to take the tone out, and use a graphic eq instead.
      My muffs I use for recording, and my Creepy Face for live.
      Is there an email to send in a trace of my creepy face? I see you guys have the Si one, mine's is the Ge one.
      It is just a fuzz face with a trim pot for bias, plus a switch and pot for variable bias. The only other difference is a larger cap for more bass, well so Brad told me.

      Cheers, and keep up the good work. It was this site that got me into building.

      Delete
    8. Just post it under the request section. I know someone was looking to build one, and I'd be happy to make the layout as soon as I see the trace.

      Delete
  10. I have a v9 I got off the bay. I went from never playing a muff to loving them. I cloned a green russian and I own two Black Russians and the v9. I will probably build this soon to compare. I also wanna add that I love this community and I've learned so much from mark and miro and I wanna say you guys are gods among men. I've been meaning to thank you guys for awhile I've build about 20 pedals from this site and I've learned a lot from you guys and other people on this site I hope it continues to grow I need more pedals to build!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Finished the pedal after getting in some BC550Bs. Sounds amazing! Thanks so much, Mark! I also got in some BC239 trannies and will be trying those out as well.

    Consider this one verified!

    ReplyDelete
  12. On the parts, the 10n capacitor says 5% ceramic, am I correctly assuming the 5% is the +/- tolerance of the capacitor?

    ReplyDelete
  13. I'm having a bit of trouble with this pedal. For the life of me I can't figure out whats going on...

    The issue seems to be around the sustain section. When the sustain pot is fully closed, no signal makes it out unless I play really hard. Then what comes out is super farty. It almost sounds like the pedal is being turned off and on really quickly. At any other sustain setting, it sounds amazing until I hold a note for long. Toward the end of the note, it breaks down and turns to poo. The same happens if a play a note really softly.

    The pedal sounds awesome, but its unusable because I can't hold a note for too long. I really hope somebody can help me out!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Check your transistor pinouts and knife the gaps.
      +m

      Delete
    2. Yeah I did that already, it's all good. I'm considering just doing a rebuild. Can anybody confirm that their build sounds good when the sustain pot is turned fully down?

      Delete
    3. I think I've got the same problem. When i trace the signal, it was lost at the input stage. Right before 1uF capacitor. I've done some parts change but it didn't work.

      So have you figured it out yet?

      Delete
  14. Hey there, I noticed on the other muff layouts there is the additional option of adding in a flat/scooped/boosted mids switch. I was wondering if that option is possible with this layout? If it is, where would the sw1 wire connect to the board? Would the other wire then connect to tone 3 like the other layouts? Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Hi. Still a little new to everything so I apologize if my question comes across as dumb. im having trouble finding out where the output goes. I saw you said Volume 2 is output, so does that mean I go straight from the V2 lug on the Pot directly to the output jack?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  16. So I was doing this schematic with 2n5088s, checked the pinout, and couldn't get it to run still. My problem was at first tranny. After days and days of frustrating work, I decided to breadboard stage one of a new schematic after failing to breadboard the first stage of this one. I chose the Iron Bell, which lacks the 2m2 resistor to ground on input and that seemed it might have fixed it.

    How is everyone else getting this to run if that was my problem??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Umm.. That's just an input pulldown and it has zero impact on the circuit behaviour. It's before the input cap too, so the transistor doesn't even "see" it. Pulldowns just make the ground potential available for the switching, so the possible pop sound is killed. So no. That can't be the issue.

      (on a side note, layouts are more like build documents, not schematics)
      +m

      Delete