Thursday, 27 July 2017

VOX MKIII Tonebender

Introduced in the late 60's the MKIII Tone Bender produces a more mellow, less aggressive fuzz than the MKI & MKII Tone Bender circuits.

Sola Sound MKIV Tonebender

I think the best description of the differences between the MKIII & MKIV tonebender comes from non-other than the captain:

The origins. Tone Bender MKIII, Tone Bender MKIV. Same party different frock. Aside from the obvious differences in the enclosure type of these pedals any true solid definition of which is what in regards to circuit type is and will always be a little bit of an ambiguous subject. The way I always made sense of it in my head was in regards to the biasing. The early MKIII's were choppy, heavy, clumsy, a fuzzy lump hammer. The later MKIV's were smooth, dynamic, articulate, a distorted boxing glove. In between, you have a foggy transitional period. Even with the those definitions in place it never always runs true.

Couldn't find a video of an original, so I figure the best example of the pedal is going to be the DAM version. Want to be clear, this layout is for an original Tonebender MKIV not the DAM one as travis pointed out.

DAM Fuzzsound

Here's four different versions of the DAM Fuzzsound, all of which are a mix of the MKIII & MKIV Tonebender.

From the captain:

Fuzz Sound MKIV (used to be badged as the MKIII) Basically a pimped out version of the Tone Bender MKIII and MKIV but with more tonal scope, more muscle and packing space age features.
First up, a few quick words on the differences between a Tone Bender MKIII and a MKIV. They do both use the same circuit blue print if you will but there are subtle and noticeable differences to each pedal in the tone department. Without over complicating matters, as I do what to get to the point, the Sola Sound made MKIII and the MKIV basically sound of their time. The early MKIII's sound fuzzy and choppy, later MKIV's sound smooth and distorted. Then there's a blurry line in the middle. Basically the biasing evolved to the point that the pedal became more overdriven than fuzzy. Ya know, I guess, to suit the needs of Musicnauts of the day.
The FS-75 is the blurry line in the middle and some. It's not a direct replica of either but the flavour I have gone for is an all out balls to the wall, big hair, big boobs, fat cars, fast food, dirty denim, dirty hippies, 8-track stereo cranking, 3-D glasses rocking fuzz tone. To quote, its: "1970 rollin' in sight"

Btw, yes it does bass

Fuzzsound FS-75 Jr

Fuzzsound MKIII

Fuzzsound Black on Black

Fuzzsound R&G

Rotosound Fuzz

Well I've been in a bit of Tonebender kick lately, so I decided to do a bunch of MKIII & MKIV variants. The Rotosound Fuzz was built by Sola Sound in the late 60's and is based on the MKIII Tonebender.

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

BuGGFX Raincoat

From blistering, octave-tinged fuzz all the way down to dirty, fat overdrive with a turn of your guitar's volume control, the Raincoat has a sound all of its own. Is it an overdrive that does fuzz? A distortion that does overdrive? A fuzz that does it all? We have no idea. All we know is, it's a Raincoat; the Raincoat.

Monday, 17 July 2017

Iron Butterfly Fuzz Wah

Not much info on this one, not even who actually made it. Found the schematic years ago over at DIYSB where it was reversed with the help of none other than dino. Figured I'd tale a shot at a vero since I did so many other wahs.

Thursday, 13 July 2017

Standard Hemmo Fuzz/Booster w/ mods

Found an old schematic of Standard Hemmo Fuzz, which has two outputs. One for cleanish boost and second for fuzz. Drew it as described and added diode clippers as notes suggested. Added volume pots for both modes, 2PDT stomps for mode select and basic bypass. Some of you might find this rather usable...

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Systech Overdrive

Here is a simple layout for a nice pedal from the 70's.
The schematic I've used is available here.

Friday, 7 July 2017

Spaceman Sputnik II

"Starting with the same germanium transistors as the much-loved original Sputnik, but with slightly different specs, we added a few slight tweaks to get very close to the sonic details of the original circuit. Many of the other parts in the Sputnik II are different but of same or similar value, including many vintage and rare parts.
While extremely similar to the original, the Sputnik II is a beast all its own. The Sputnik II takes everything we loved about the original, and adds in the things we dreamed of after its original release it:
• Full-size control knobs for every parameter
• Foot-switchable DRIFT mode, with its own status indicator
• Additional FILTER options for maximum tone-shaping
• Additional circuitry making it more friendly to active pickups, buffers, synths, pedals, etc
Within Sputnik II lies a plethora of fuzz tones. Smooth, gritty, vintage, modern, thick, thin, buzzy, bassy, splatty, sputtery, noisy, buttery, controlled or very much out-of-control. A truly endless cornucopia of fuzz."

Here is another pedal reverse-engineered by Dino (Digi2t).
He also added an extra diode reverse switch.
For all infos on how to build this pedal you can find Dino's original thread (with his own vero) and schematic on the DIY forum here.

Sunday, 2 July 2017

Krank Krankshaft Overdrive

Another Tubescreamer anyone? Info at FSB.

Aeon Drive v2

Nice hotrodded son of Tubescreamer circuit. I thought we'd want this here too. There are audio clips for this circuit up at, as well as build docs. I've added a series polarity protection and a 47p cap in the feedback loop. If one desires, both can be left out.

Monday, 26 June 2017

Keeler Designs Push

We do get quite a lot of requests to post the schematics with the layouts. Please note that we can't do that unless it's our own work. We may link to a forum thread etc. but we cannot post other peoples work witout their permission. This is the reason for not posting schematic files. Once again. Since we can find the drawings, you should be able to do so too.

This one is work of mine, and thus, ok to post. You can still check the FSB thread for more details.

Sunday, 18 June 2017

Tubeworks Real Tube 903 Modded Tone Stacks

So as most of you guys know when I'm studying for exams I tend to do a bunch of layouts when taking breaks to keep my sanity. So since I did a layout for the Tubeworks 903 I thought to myself if it's basically a tube pre-amp I thought why couldn't the tone stack be modded to that of some legendary amps. With that in mind, I modified the original layout I made with various tone stacks.

Original schematic can be found on Revolutiondeux.

Layout 1: Fender


Layout 2: Marshall

Layout 3: Vox

Layout 4: Hiawatt DR103

Layout 5: Sunn 1st Gen Model T

Layout 6: Orange OR120 MKII

Layout 7: Matamp GT120

Layout 8: 72 Ampeg SVT

Layout 9: Marshall Superbass

Layout 10: Dumble Overdrive Special 70's

Layout 11: Dumble Overdrive Special '97

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Tubeworks Real Tube 903

JohnK had made a layout for the 903 awhile ago, and since I did a layout for the 901 i thought I'd see if I could make a smaller layout for the 903 to make it easier to put this in a 1590BB with plenty of room. I took his switch wiring to make it true bypass, and removed the additional LED to tell you that it's got power, which I feel is unnecessary. Schematic can be found on Revolutiondeux.

Tubeworks Real Tube 901

JohnK had made a layout for the 903 awhile ago, so I thought I'd give the 901 a shot. The layout should be small enough to give you plenty of room in a 1590BB. I took his switch wiring to make it true bypass, and removed the additional LED to tell you that it's got power, which I feel is unnecessary. Schematic can be found on Revolutiondeux.

The 901 has higher gain then the 903.

Friday, 16 June 2017

Electro-Harmonix Signal Pad

With 1000 verified layouts in site, I figured I'd throw in something small, simple, and usable.

From the Source:

The Signal Pad is a passive attenuator that allows you to instantly switch to a different preset volume. It's like your guitar's volume knob, with a fully-passive and color-free circuit. Leave your amp's volume set high for overdrive, and use the Signal Pad to lower your level for a clean sound -- then switch it off to kick in your amp's natural overdrive. You can also experiment with the Signal Pad anywhere in your effects chain -- you'll bring out new tonal combinations from your favorite old pedals.

Basically a simple switchable volume pedal.

Monday, 12 June 2017

Mictester - Silicon Tonebender

Found this while searching for some schematics for Silicon Tonebenders I came across it on revolutiondeux. Miro posted a layout awhile ago for the Hot Silicon, which is pretty much the same, the difference being the trimmer off the gain control (abuse) which lets you set the gain rather then having a set resistor. Since my layout different then his, and the added trimmer I figured it was worth adding.

Here's mictester's advice on tweaking:

"Adjustment: set the 1k "Abuse" pot halfway. Play though it, and adjust 5k preset until "gating" just stops. That's it!

You'll find that it has plenty of output, that the "Abuse" control gives a good range of colour, the "Sparkle" control has a very wide range and the sound is remarkably reminiscent of early Jeff Beck (certainly not a bad thing!).

Possible mods:

Put small value capacitors from base to collector of the middle two transistors - start with 47pF. This "smooths out" the sound a lot, but reduces the treble available.

If you have radio interference, put 100pF from base of the first transistor to ground.

Experiment with the capacitor values in the tone control - the 8n2 could go as low as 3n3, which would give a ridiculous range of treble control!

Increase the value of the 47k feedback / bias resistor - try as high as 470k. The gain will rise, the touch sensitivity will disappear, and it will become a high gain screaming monster! "

Silicon Tonebender MKII

I saw a request for a Silicon Tonebender MKII based on a perfboard layout over on StompBoXed's page, which is the modified Tonebender MK II Professional. So after making a layout for it I started searching for other Silicon Tonebenders.The other 2 schematics can be found over at DIYSB.

Silicon Tonebender MKII

Silicon Tonebender MKII Professional


Silicon Tonebender MKII Professional Mod

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Rockett 10 Ton Hammer

"The Rockett Pedals 10 Ton Hammer is a perfect distortion pedal for players who have a clean amp, like a Fender. It may not play nicely with high gain amplifiers, thats just the nature of the high gain game. This is a highly responsive pedal, and with some creative use of your guitars volume and tone knobs, you can even achieve some bluesier tones for added versatility. But really, subtlety isnt this pedals primary job. It is here to crush, kill, and destroy, but in a very musical and harmonically rich way. Get back in tune with the old school overdrives that made you wanna rip some killer riffs and leads in the first place. The Rockett Pedals 10 Ton Hammer will unleash a pummeling tone with all the intensity of a monstrous wall of distortion"
Original FSB thread and schematic available here.
Layout Updated! Connected 10K resistor from Bass 1 to Ground instead of Vb.

Sunday, 28 May 2017

Darkglass Microtubes B3K

"The Microtubes B3K is an unusual tool - a perfect combination of brutality and clarity. It delivers defined and powerful saturation in an intuitive format. There are no rules and no limits, so dig in and unleash your tone.

Level: Sets the volume of the overdriven signal.
Drive: Sets the amount of saturation in the overdriven signal.
Blend: Mixes the clean input signal with the overdriven signal. The clean signal remains at unity gain while the volume of the overdriven signal is set by the Level knob, allowing for fine control of the blend ratio.
Grunt Switch: Sets the amount of low frequency content to saturate by selecting between three different bass boost levels before the clipping stage.
Attack Switch: Sets the amount of treble content to saturate: The œBoost setting emphasizes the treble content extra clarity and presence. The œFlat position leaves this register untouched while the œCut position will reduce the amount of high frequencies being saturated. This new addition helps to keep the treble portion of the signal under control, specially useful when playing with new strings and/or cabinets with tweeters.

You can find the original FSB thread and schematic here.

The layout (like the Friedman BE-OD) has been verified as "working" in the forum section but the original has been built using SMD components and there's been some "guessing" in some of the values.
I don't know how close it is to the B3K (it may be 100%) but this is the best schematic we can get at the moment.

Friday, 26 May 2017

Locobox Mysto-Dysto Distortion Unit

Very little info around on this late 70's / early 80's unit. Check the FSB thread for details. I snatched the image off from fxdb...

Now. What's this all about.. The way i see it, we have a buffered OD250/Dist+ gain stage (including clipping diodes shunt to ground), followed by a sort-of active BMP tone stack and an output buffering. It may not sound all that great as it is, but there is a lot of room for your own improvements. First of all, one could up the input cap for 47n or 100n and up the 47n coming from distortion control for 220n or even 470n to get a lot more lows through. Next, the tone stack is quite abysmal. I would probably double the cap values there too. Then the unity amplifier making the tone stack active is what it is - an unity amplifier. Either lower the input resistor from 100K to 47K or up the feedback resistor from 100K to 220K. That should make the circuit roar. Also, for added stability, up the filter caps to choice. And finally, try on a few different diode setups for the clippers. Not all of these may be required to nail your new favorite tone, but most of them should be worth a try. Anyway. Maybe you should try and have your way with this one.

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Noah'sArk Distortion "M"

Not much info around of this japanese "Marshall in a box" type distortion. It does sound pretty good though.. Junko seems a bit nervous on the demo.

Thursday, 18 May 2017

Catalinbread Katzenkönig

Damn i like this brand. Cool, great sounding designs and lots of them. And i was surprised the schematic was up at their site. I only have a few originals, but i'm strongly tempted to get more..

Info from Catalinbread:
We combined the best elements of a Tone Bender MkII fuzz with a Rat distortion to create something that sings like a fuzz but is tight like a distortion. It loves humbuckers and single coils. It loves your cranked amp and your super-clean amp.

Katzenkönig was tuned to offer a huge range of response – from a really beautiful singing tone, to tight, harmonically-rich crunch, all the way to fuzz mayhem.
A simple, four-knob control scheme allows you to dial in your sound quickly and without much fuss:
INPUT – Controls the input sensitivity. Turn it down when using higher output pickups and humbuckers or to dial in your wah sound (more on that later). Turn it up for lower output pickups or for when you want to go over-the-top!
GAIN – Controls the gain of the second gain stage. It is not a conventional gain control, rather, it controls the amount of negative feedback in that stage. What does that mean for you? It means you get a wide ranging gain control that sounds great throughout it’s entire rotation!
FILTER – Allows you to dial in your final tone from smooth and creamy all the way to bright and cutting. You can quickly find the sweet spot for your rig with this control. If you are familiar with the Filter control on a Rat then what you’ll find is that this is an even better version of that idea!
VOLUME – Standard volume control. You’ll find that Katzenkönig sounds great turned down quiet or cranked up and loud!

To get familiar with your new Katzenkönig, let’s begin by plugging it straight into your amp set to a clean sound with no other pedals in the chain.
Set the controls as follows: Volume – noon, Filter – noon, Gain – minimum, Input – minimum.
Now play a bit to get a feel for how it responds. Go ahead and mess with the Filter knob to see how it works. You’ll notice that unlike most fuzz and distortion pedals, Katzenkönig sounds great at minimum gain settings.
Now go ahead and start experimenting with the Gain and Input controls. You’ll notice that they both increase gain but in different ways. Leave one at minimum and start turning the other up. Then leave the other at minimum and turn the other one up. And yes, cranking them both up leads to extreme fuzz, sustain, and saturation!
At lower Gain and Input settings, Katzenkönig’s response is tight, like a great distortion pedal. You can play chugging, palm-muted riffs that you wouldn’t be able to get away with on a standard fuzz pedal. But turn up the Gain and Input, and you can get those epic harmonic blooms that you normally associate with a great fuzz pedal!


Monday, 15 May 2017

Friedman BE-OD

"Designed by tone-guru-to-the-stars David Friedman, the BE-OD overdrive pedal faithfully captures the sonic impact of Friedman’s legendary BE-100 amplifier–known in some circles as the Brown Eye, and favored by serious musicians the world over. The BE-OD overdrive delivers authentic tube amplifier sound from a compact pedal with the controls needed to shape your tone, including volume, gain, tight, bass, treble and presence. These responsive knobs will take you from light, slightly broken-up overdrives to straight-up gain nirvana"
Original FSB thread and schematic available here.

09/06/17 Layout updated! Schematic and layout have now been corrected. Thanks to Ciaran, Pakrat, Destro and the others on FSB for all their work.
If you've already built the previous layout and want to correct it:
- Remove C2. The remaining 10n cap that connected to it becomes 100n and needs to go to ground instead of V+.
- Change the 120p between the TL074's pins 1 & 2 to 47p.
- Change the 100R resistor to 10R.
- C1 is now 47p.
- The 10n cap next to the trimmer is now 100p.
- The link under the trimmer (from lug 1 to lug 2) needs to be moved up one row (between lug 2 and lug 3). Eliminate the cut under the trimmer by jumping it left to right.

If you want to use transistors instead of 1n4148s you can use this layout.
It is the same with an added cut.
You can follow the FSB original thread for more details.
(Transistors' sockets positions in the layout would remain the same no matter the combination you use)

Saturday, 13 May 2017

J. D. Barbato Buttercup Fuzz

Description and info at freestompboxes. Seemed like a nice vintage fuzz adaptation and thus, a cool addition to our library.

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Black Arts Toneworks Revelation Super Lead

From the source:

A revelation. Stripped down all out amp pusher. The Revelation has a trio of controls. Pre Gain, Gain, and Volume. LOTS of volume. Pre Gain sets the overall gain level of the device, the gain control dials in the correct amount of distortion and the volume knob absolutely slays the front end of your amp. Think of the Revelation as an extension of your amp’s pre section. Use it to push your amp into super creamy saturation, use it to boost your riffs into full and thick exaggerations of your amp’s base tone. The Revelation does not alter your tone, just makes MORE of it. Choose the Revelation to hammer your amp.

The SuperLead version of the Revelation is a rawer, more aggressive take on the circuit. A bit gnarlier, mid focused, aggressive sound. Specifically tuned for guitar, and baritone guitars, choose the SuperLead for a fuller, fatter, more saturated and aggressive sound.

While there is no schematic for this one I did some comparison between the Black Arts Toneworks Revelation Super Bass and the Pharaoh, and what I noticed is that the values are identical, with the tone control removed. This leads me to be fairly certain that the Black Arts Toneworks Revelation Super Lead is the same concept, but with the values for the LSTR, since the tonal description matches that of the comparisons between the Pharaoh and LSTR. So I figured since I had the layout out to modify it to match the Oath (Black Arts Toneworks Revelation Super Bass without pots) I might as well take the time to change it over to the Black Arts Toneworks Revelation Super Lead as well.

So it's a striped down LSTR without the tonestack.

Black Arts Toneworks Oath

Essentially the oath is the Black Arts Revelation Superbass without any knobs. After VisualFuzz found an image of the Oaths board, and having to enhancing it to see the resistor values without the image being distorted I'm pretty certain that I've got the values and placements for the resistors to replace the pots.


Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Barcus Berry 3000A Buffer Preamp EQ

I know, I know. Another day another layout from me. I mean Jez, can't I let one of the other guys post a new layout for once this month? You guys must be sick of seeing my name pop up with a new layout... Anyways, this time I decided to do something different the the massive amounts of fuzzes I've been doing.

I've seen a few posts in the requests over the years for people looking for a preamp for Piezo pickups. The Barcus Berry 3000A is designed to work for acoustic piezo pickups but is also a buffer, preamp, and EQ. This is the only info that I could find on it:

The Barcus Berry 3000AE Piezo Buffer Preamp with EQ is specifically designed to work with all Barcus-Berry electret microphone systems. Features external bass, treble and volume frequency controls to allow a wide range of adjustment. Includes a belt clip for unrestricted movement.

 Barcus Berry 3000AE Piezo Buffer Preamp Features: 

• Designed to work with all Barcus-Berry electret condenser mic systems.
• Features external bass, treble and volume frequency controls for a wide range of adjustment.
 Barcus Berry 3000A Product Specifications:
Input (EQ) Flat
Input Interface: RCA unbalanced
Input Impedance: 2.2 Meg Ohms
Maximum Input Level: 2.0 vrms
Output (EQ Flat, Volume Max)
Interface: 1/4" unbalanced
Impedance: 2K Ohms
THD: .008% @ 1kHz
Noise: -92dBu
S/N: 100dB
Bass: +/- 12dB @ 50Hz
Treble: +/- 12dB @ 10kHz
Frequency Response: 5 Hz - 30kHz (+/- 1 dB) Power Supply

From what I see from the schematic I have no question that it will work with any Piezo pickup, as there doesn't seem to be anything really special to tell me it can only work with theirs. Mostly it's just marketing to get you to buy their pickup.

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Emanating Fist Electronics Black Dust - Tone Distorter

From the captain:

Dig it. Black Dust. The Black Acid pre-set to fold air. Fuzz and drive, wide open. Maximum attack, minimized footprint. Fuelled with the same PCB as the Black Acid, British made Magnatec BC109's, Arcol carbon comps, BC/Vishay capacitors, prime cuts all the way.

For those not familiar with this circuit type it has a very similar tonal qualities to the old Meathead Dark though I'd say a more refined approach with a more traditional overall tone than that of any Meathead. The mids are quite flat the lows considerably boosted and the highs pretty natural and open sounding. Heaviness, it is some.

There were 2 versions, a big box version (older) and smaller (newer).

Big Box Version:

Small Box Version: