Friday, 29 September 2017

Lumpy's Tone Shop Lemon Drop/ZII/Series 7

Originally sold as the Lemon Drop, then the ZII, and now the Series 7.

Description of the Series 7 from the source:

Designed to mimic the unique overdriven tones of the rare Vox 4&7 series amplifiers in a small and easy to use stompbox.  An unknown amp to most, the 4&7 series amps were most famously used by the Beatles during the Revolver era and Jimmy Page on numerous tracks from the second Zep album.  Think Paperback Writer style of tones and, yes, Whole Lotta Love.

The 7 Series Overdrive captures the aggressive qualities of the solid state preamp found in the 4&7 series amps by using a pseudo hybrid setup consisting of a specifically selected silicon transistor for the first stage which adds a distinct bite and growl.  That pushes an FET stage into clipping adding some warmth, sustain and amp like dynamics to the tone and feel.  The end result is a highly effective emulation of the amp and a unique sonic blend that could be characterized as a "fuzzy overdrive."

As it's been pointed out there are some pictures with the 2.2uF coming off the emitter to ground as 4.7uF. I've seen pictures with 2.2uF as well, so I'm under the assumption that there's multiple versions as the pedal has changed names over the years. I changed the value of the cap so now there's 2 different layouts. With the 4.7uF cap the pedal should fatten up more compared to the 2.2uF. 

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Nine Volt Nirvana BrontoBoost

Next up of the Nine Volt Nirvana pedals is the BrontoBoost. From Joe.

The new Brontoboost is a two stage booster/fuzz/OD/Dist unit that has a ton of different tones in it, all good! It goes from awesome treble boost like a British top booster, to fullrange boost, to very fat fuzz and everything in between. The fuzz can be set to 'sick', which sounds like an amp on the verge of meltdown! The Brontoboost features tremendous sustain, with a fuzz character that is textured and harmonically rich without sounding like existing fuzzes. Be careful, playing in this compressed , swirly fuzz mode can be addicting, and might bring out a whole new side to your musical expression! "The Bronto is a versatile beast, and has a character unlike any other pedal on the market. Some people simply don't like it, others think it is the most brilliant thing they have ever played! Weird. It does four things, and all of them very well:
  1. Cleanish boost [treble boost or full range]
  2. OD, like a TS, but with a much more open and natural feel - responds to your playing in a very satisfying way. Wider freq response than a TS or most other pedals on the market due to the 'quad cap' circuit path - this adds dimension to the freq response.
  3. Fuzz - mild fuzz all the way to 'amp meltdown' sound. different than any other fuzz I have heard, - compressed yet articulate. Smooth yet alive. Sustain and clarity amidst the fuzzfrenzy . Weird but beautiful.
  4. Tube amp simulator. I use mine on low volume gigs to replicate the breakup of a tube amp. People are amazed a the tones that are achieved at low volume with it. Like our favorite all time great rock guitar tones but at a very reasonable volume!
The other great thing is that at all settings, it retains an incredible 'gain' control - your guitar 's volume knob! I use the Bront on about 80% of all my guitar work these days due to this versatility. Swiss army knife of preamp/OD/Boost/Distortion/Fuzz."
Quick note: Q3 is Ge, so I assume you can sub the 2SB54 for any other PNP Germanium transistor.

Nine Volt Nirvana Tape Measure Boost

I came across some a bunch of schematics for Nine Volt Nirvana, Joe Gagan's old company. While I haven't found any videos for all of them to get an idea of the tone I can guarantee that if Joe Gagan designed it it's gonna sound awesome.

First up, the Tape Measure Boost. The schematic calls for a trimmer for the volume, I believe the idea is to have it as a set boost inside another pedal or stand alone unit, but I thought it would be nice to have one with a volume pot instead. You can also sub the 2N2222 with any other common NPN Si transistor (2N5088, BC108, 2N3904, etc.)

Added Pot

Sunday, 24 September 2017

BJFE Sparkling Yellow Overdrive V2

Not much info on this. From what I've read from the BJFE forum is that the 3 knob Sparkling Yellow Overdrive was a short BJFE Customshop run that's supposed to have that old school early American tones, think Fender Tweed, Blonde, and Brownface.

Video of the 3 Knob

Video of Bearfoot version of the 4 Knob (Closest Video I could find)

Original 3 Knob Limited Run

4 Knob Production Version With M Knob

Saturday, 23 September 2017

Foxrox CC Hybrid

Original Info:
"CC Hybrid is one of the first pedals to use one germanium and one silicon transistor in the classic Fuzz Face circuit.

CC Hybrid is a stand-alone pedal that contains the same Silicon/Germanium fuzz face circuit as the original Captain Coconut and Captain Coconut2. To my knowledge, it’s the first example of a commercially available pedal to use one germanium and one silicon transistor in the classic Fuzz Face circuit. It combines the warm, dark organic tone of germanium with the clarity and sustain of silicon. CC Hybrid gives you the best of both..

Volume - Set the volume you like, compensate for level changes when adjusting the Grit and Fuzz controls.
Fuzz - Controls the amount of gain in the circuit. Typical setting is all the way up, or backed off a little.
Grit - controls bias voltage to the transistors. This lets you go from smooth to choppy and everything in between. Typical setting is 11:00. Past the 2:00 setting the sound takes on a restricted, gated quality. The extreme range of the Grit control is effected by the voltage coming into the pedal. Above 9Volts, grit stays smooth at the max setting. Below 9Volts, grit can sound choppy at gated as low as the 1:00 setting. If you notice this - don’t worry, there’s nothing wrong with the pedal! Just set it for the sound you like.
Input trim - There's a trimmer inside for backing the input level down a little. Just like having your guitar volume turned down. It’s preset all the way up."

There are 3 layouts: one with the original trimmer, one with a fixed resistor in its place and one for NPN transistors (not the Foxrox version).
Schematic available here.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Shoe Pixel

Interesting sounding 8-Bit fuzz, that's not typically my type of pedal that I thought will get some love. Schematic is posted over at DIYSB.

From the source:

The Pixel is one of the earliest SHOE designs. It began as an oscillating fuzz and, after intentionally adding elements haphazardly and then adjusting the circuit so the pedal began to work again, it turned into something else entirely.
The Pixel is a gated fuzz and is commonly used on bass, though it works quite well on guitar and other instruments. When used with a guitar on single-note lines, the Pixel is adept at producing chiptune and analog or 8-bit synthesizer type sounds. It can resemble the sound of a classic monosynth or game console. This effect is most pronounced at higher PINCH settings.

By turning up the PINCH knob, you will create a stronger gating effect. Turn the control down and you will gain more and more sustain until the pedal ceases to be gated and can move into some slightly more traditional bass and guitar fuzz tones.

The Pixel is not, however, a pitch tracking effect as many synthesizer emulators are. As a result, you can move seamlessly into highly distorted chord playing simply by changing what you play.

Pixel on bass operates quite similarly, but bass notes will tend to have longer sustain when played through the Pixel. By adjusting the PINCH knob, you can also move between more open fuzz sounds or staccato synth-like tones. Because of its popularity with bass players, the current version of the Pixel features larger capacitor values at all stages to let your thunderous low end through.

The Pixel also features a Low Pass control which is very useful in dialing out upper harmonics. You can go from rather nasal to warm and fat with this control.

There’s also a new feature on the latest version. That is the Easy Mode/Hard Mode switch. This essentially lets you select from two different versions of the Pixel circuit. The Hard Mode setting is quite a bit louder than the Easy Mode setting, so be careful to turn down your volume before switching!

The Pixel definitely takes a bit of practice to grasp and you will likely need to adjust your playing style when playing it to achieve the best sounds. This is OK, though. Some SHOE pedals are intended to enhance your guitar and your existing playing. The Pixel is, more or less, a different instrument and you should approach it as such. With some creativity and the right mindset the experience is quite rewarding both sonically and creatively. Use this pedal to write new types of songs and go on new adventures!


Volume (Top Left): Sets the output level of the pedal

Easy Mode/Hard Mode (Toggle Switch): Use this to select between two different Pixel circuit versions. Hard Mode is a bit tougher to master (and much louder) but greatly expands the number of sounds available in the pedal (it’s based on the very first Pixel). Play with the Pinch and Input Level knobs to get a number of new synth-like sounds (Pinch all the way left and Input almost all the way up is a personal favorite). Easy Mode is a bit more forgiving and has a softer sound that can be tuned into a more traditional fuzz sound at low Pinch and Input Level settings.

Input Level Adjustment (Top Right): Used to adjust the level of signals coming into the pedal and can also be used to “clean up” harsher attacks due to its built in mild low pass.

Low Pass (Bottom Left): A simple tone control. Use it adjust how much treble is present in your output signal. This control will never cut your bass frequencies.

Pinch (Bottom Right): The heart of the pedal’s sound. Turn the pinch knob up for more staccato and synth-like sounds. Turn it down for longer sustain and less synth-like fuzz sounds.

18v Colorsound Power Boost

Well as usual just finished a round of exams, so it's time to start posting the layouts I did when I was taking study breaks. This time I'm going to space them out so there's not a sudden flood.

First up the 18v Colorsound Power Boost. Same topography as the Colorsound Overdriver, but ran at 18V, and to my ears boarders on a fuzz. I made 4 different layouts, 2 identical to the original (early & late version), and 2 that have an added master volume pot. On the original the pot labeled volume is really more of a gain pot then a true volume pot, so I figured that it would be much more usable to be able to max the gain and control the output level. The original came with BC184L transistors, but you should be able to use any NPN Silicon Transistor.

Original Early:

Early Version with a Volume Pot Mod:

Original Late:

Late Version with a Volume Pot Mod:

Thursday, 14 September 2017

BYOC Parametric EQ

Another "requested" monster layout! At least this one doesn't use any weird components.
You can find all infos and schematic from their website here.

Saturday, 9 September 2017

Caline CP16 Mark 4

Apparently mimicing Mesa MKIV head's distortion. Hadn't seen this type of distortion control in a pedal before, so i thought this might be a nice addition. Has nice amount of gain and there's room for tweaking.
Update 12.9.2017 - Don't know what was going on in my head with the original layout revision. It had tons of profound errors in it. Now fixed per schematic and let's try this verification thing again...

Onerr OVD-1 Overdrive

Schematic was recently posted at FSB (Thanks Manfred!), but there are couple small things i decided to tweak for this layout. For one, the original has 4558 dual opamp in the circuit with other half left hanging. This layout has 741 in its place and the transistors are with more common pinout. Nice singing overdrive circuit nevertheless.

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Diezel VH4

"Unlike traditional overdrive stomp boxes, the VH4 Pedal is a true preamp which delivers an authentic representation of its namesake – real Diezel tone – not emulated, not modeled, but sincerely reproduced. The entire signal architecture is faithful to the original: Bass, Mid, Treble and variable Deep and Presence controls allow you to tailor the uniquely Diezel Overdrive character. The command found in the Gain control gives a player everything they will ever need with lower gain settings producing the classic Diezel sparkle and chime to saturated mid-gain sounds, to scorching Diezel leads by cranking it all the way up.
As close to the original VH4 preamp, the VH4 pedal can be used as either an overdrive or as a standalone preamp to feed into your amps power section. What players take away by going direct into the power amp is all the dynamic, unfiltered Diezel tone by simply plugging into your amplifiers clean channel. Two outputs are provided with the first intended to connect to the front of a guitar amplifier and the second allows for a connection to a line-level power amp or power section of your amp via the Effects Return."
Original FSB thread and schematic available here.
This is a buffered effect.
Follow the layout's footswitch wiring.