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Hey muff's, which big muff?`
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Guitars, Basses, Amps & FX Goto page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4  Next [all]
Author Hey muff's, which big muff?`
doctorvague
chromium wrote:
doctorvague wrote:
I'm late to the party - I rarely pop in this area.

I'm curious what this might be worth. I bought it new but don't have a clue what year. It's missing 2 rubber feet and the 4 front screws. Needs a new power switch and foot switch or maybe they could be taken apart and fixed. The transistors are BC239C. If you jiggle the switches just right it works fine and sounds fucking great!


They refer to those as the "ram's head" version. Had one just like it for most of my life, but off'd it about a year ago and bought modules or basses or sumpthin' w00t

Mine went for ~450 (it had an extra hole drilled in its case), and I've seen them go higher. Not an expert on the prices - don't pay much attention to these. Given their simplicity I think the prices are pretty much insane (IMHO). But then again, insanity is relative... This is fun!


Thanks for the info. I did a little research some months back out of curiosity and I was under the impression that the $450 ones had some other rare sought-after transistor (longer number than mine, but I don't recall the specifics). Maybe yours was one of those? I only hope I'm wrong and you're right and mine is worth more than I'm thinking!!
chromium
doctorvague wrote:
Thanks for the info. I did a little research some months back out of curiosity and I was under the impression that the $450 ones had some other rare sought-after transistor (longer number than mine, but I don't recall the specifics). Maybe yours was one of those? I only hope I'm wrong and you're right and mine is worth more than I'm thinking!!


Mine was based on Fairchild 2n5087 transistors, and looked exactly like yours inside and out.

It sounded good, but it was soooo noisy.. coulda doubled as a noise gen when I wasn't playing. I just thought it needed some help, but was never compelled to look into it. None of my other fuzz boxes are like that (for example, the much more vintagey Maestro FZ-1 and the W-2 have very low noise floor by comparison). I disclosed this in the sale and it still sold for that price! huh? The guy that bought it even told me "yeah they're noisy like that" d'oh! If that's normal, I just found it completely unusable... but then again that's been my only experience with one.
revmutt
Wow I missed this thread.. Here's my 2 cents anyway.

Triangle Knob is more mid rangy and I think a little more flexible. The first version of the red and black (pre IC) is heavy and fuzzy in a lower sort of Sabbath way and if you are curious about the development it's worth checking out the Axis which has two knobs and was originally badged as a Guild product.

The Green Russian is still cool sound. Black one not so hot. I don't have anything more current.
blungo2
Has the earthquaker hoof already been mentioned?
it shares some qualities with the green sovtek muff but a bit smoother to my ears.
Bricks
Skreddy Mayo is fav
Minimoog56
I have or had the D*A*M Ramshead Pi, a Lambshead and an 80's NYC. ALso an Ernie from Skreddy...

All AOK in my book - a classic design from Mike Matthews...
Babaluma
my vote is for the haiku-ish pnp germanium fuzz, he has one for sale on here now!
cerebrosis
i had a version 3 with reverse paint job(black with red stomp area) and it was smooth and seriously heavy. like a elephant on a slip and slide. smile
felixer
problem with the old muff's is 'built quality'. lots of different parts inside, sloppy solder work, no true bypass, weak case that bends when you look at it. hence they all sound different. try before you buy. recently got a used fairly new us big muff for 45 euro and it sounds better with less noise then my original '78 one. ymmv ....
line_and_shadow
Sorry to bump such an old thread- looking for muff recommendations, have recently been checking out the Buffalo FX RH-X, DAM RH, various Skreddy versions, etc...
Any recommendations here?
blungo2
For the most part i've gone back to my old sovtek green muff, but i recently got a Wren & Cuff Box of War which is very nice. Maybe a little hairier than the green muff, but definitely in the same ball park.
PrimateSynthesis
line_and_shadow wrote:
Sorry to bump such an old thread- looking for muff recommendations, have recently been checking out the Buffalo FX RH-X, DAM RH, various Skreddy versions, etc...
Any recommendations here?


As far as I can remember there are several big muff threads here. Perhaps they can be merged into one?

There are pedals based on the same circuit with more controls that offer a wider variety of sounds than any of the original three-knob designs.
tallhouserecordingco
Green Russian one is killer. Have a clone of one. Also have a mid 90s Russian one also good but parts are cheap....something broke a while back and haven't had time to fix it. Most likely the switch.
Check out the BYOC clones. I think they offer several different versions.
sduck
This one sounds like the one to get - at least for me.

PrimateSynthesis
While having a Big Muff that has more variation in sound is very good, trying to match the exact sound of any one particular model from the past is silly. Because it did not exist. While they didn't vary as ridiculously from unit to unit as Dallas Arbiter type fuzz pedals (due to their design's dependence on transistor specifications, combined with extremely wide manufacturing tolerances for those transistors). Big Muffs were hardly consistent -- even with the same graphics and hardware.

The most important differences between models are the high-pass capacitor values, the feedback capacitor values, and the RC values of the tone control. While these differed from model to model. And made a noticeable difference in sound. They also varied in both nominal value and tolerance among the "same" older models. EHX also interchangeably used ceramic, film, and electrolytic capacitors, for the same functions. Whether the type of cap made any difference in sound might be in the realm of reasonable opinion. It's inarguable that that electrolytic caps are much more likely to fail over time.

The clipping diodes might make some tiny difference, but I doubt it. Since they were all standard silicon switching diodes (eg. 1N4148) with very similar forward voltages.

As far as transistors are concerned, I severely doubt the type used made any difference in sound among all the NPN versions (there were also PNP, and an op-amp version). EHX neither measured the hFE of the transistors, nor used the same types of transistors in any particular model.

tl;dr: The big difference among Big Muffs is the capacitor values.
gentle_attack
I owned a couple of Stomp Under Foot (SUF) reproduction Muffs. Would have to look up which "vintages." I bought and sold them some time ago when I was testing out a ton of fuzzes. He has 2 lines, his versions of Rats and Muffs which are consistently available and a bit less expensive, and then occasional runs of certain "vintages" years /versions/transistor+cap combinations, which are a bit more expensive.

I can't personally speak for the accuracy of the tones from those "vintage" models but a lot of people on tGP/DAM/I<3Fuzz seemed to think they were spot on and a solid combination of reliable/true bypass/accurate for the price.
tarotsync
I think the newest big box muffs are absolutely wonderful.
Sinamsis
I used to own a black box Soviet Big Muff. I really liked it on bass. The green Muff always gets a lot of love. These days my go to fuzz is the Eau Claire Thunder by Dwarfcraft. I think the circuit was based off of the green Big Muff. Fantastic pedal. And great company.

As an aside, I always found the older EHX pedals pretty noisy. I've owned some other older big box EHX pedals and they all added quite a bit of noise to the signal, even when bypassed.
Knights Who Say Neve
I finished building a BYOC Large Beaver muff to Triangle specs last weekend. It's a great fuzz - pretty similar to the Earthquaker Devices Hoof in sound.

I had a Green Russian muff a while back, and I found the tone knob almost unusable; there was basically one position that sounded good. The triangle BYOC is usable with almost any combination of knob positions and can actually get a fuzzy OD-ish sound with the sustain knob turned down.
abandonist
I had a green Russian that was fantastic, but sold it after I got my Blackout Musket. So versatile.
mictester
The most important differences between models are the high-pass capacitor values, the feedback capacitor values, and the RC values of the tone control.

This is EXACTLY the case. You can also make sight changes to the gain of the distortion stages (make them more sensitive) by increasing the collector to supply resistors, or reducing the emitter resistors. However, the changes will be marginal.

I find it astonishing that some idiot musos will pay literally thousands of dollars for a cheap and simple effect like this. I saw one on Ebay a while ago that went for nearly $4000 eek! because it had been used on some album or other.....

I remember getting my very first BMP in 1970, and taking it apart. I was disappointed to discover that it was just four cheap transistors, four switching diodes, three pots and a handful of resistors and capacitors. It was just a week later that I sold my first - improved - clone of the BMP to a friend in the neighbourhood. thumbs up He still uses it today, so I must have made a good job of the construction! It was what got me into building guitar effects.

The only thing wrong with the stock circuit is the dreaded hiss - the gain of the distortion stages ensures that this will be ever-present! I've built them with noise gates, and even with envelope followers to retain the original guitar envelope (a truly bizarre effect, with a fuzzy, distorted, intermodulated mess that comes out of the Muff, but with the original attack, sustain and decay of an untreated guitar!). You can tame it a bit with a low pass filter, but you'll change the basic tonal character.....

It's really worth building one yourself. Throw it together on Veroboard. Make sure that you keep the input well away (physically) from the output to prevent building an oscillator! Try different coupling capacitors and caps in series with the diodes, until you get just the sound you want. Even if you had to buy all the parts, it shouldn't cost you more than a few £, $ or whatever.....

Just don't be fooled into paying massive amounts for something that anyone with even the most basic constructional skills can make in an hour or two!
strangeonlooker
A lot of people swear by Earthbound Audio's Supercollider and Supercollider '71 (this one is their Ram's Head clone I guess)..it's basically a Big Muff with a lot more tonal variety (knobs for Mids, Bass and a switch for LED or Sillicon clipping)...I can't attest to its performance (although the demos do sound great) since I don't own one or have never played one personally, but if I was buying a Muff pedal, this would probably be it.
GraysonJames
The best muff I've ever played wasn't actually a muff. It was a TYM rams head clone. I compared it to an original Rams head and somehow Tym's sounded better. Go figure hmmm.....
AhuraMazda
mictester wrote:
[i]

Just don't be fooled into paying massive amounts for something that anyone with even the most basic constructional skills can make in an hour or two!


What he said. Go my route and pay fuck all for a sweet Triangle clone that sounds waaayyy better than it should.

All Hail the Triangle.
felixer
tarotsync wrote:
I think the newest big box muffs are absolutely wonderful.

mictester wrote:

The only thing wrong with the stock circuit is the dreaded hiss - the gain of the distortion stages ensures that this will be ever-present!

on the newer ones they use low-noise transistors thumbs up def worth getting a new one and modding the caps if you want something specific. or better yet, get a kit and source some good parts ...
also check these pages http://www.bigmuffpage.com/Big_Muff_Pi_versions_schematics_part1.html
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