welcome to Apocalypse Audio, your haven for DIY guitar effects in the end times. so, start prayin to the fuzz gods, savin up those parts, and remember, when the big one goes off- keep your transistors shielded from those pesky electromagnetic pulses!



here's a pedal i built up for a buddy of mine the other day.  he plays bass in the local chicago trio Hobo and Boxcar, and wanted something that he could use for bass as well as guitar.  i built him up a circuit that i came up with based on the Fuzz Face/Wooly Mammoth model, that shines when it comes to double duty fuzz action.  it's basically a tweaked fuzz face with russian GT309 transistors (a new fave of mine), that has the fuzz factory/wooly mammoth adjustable NFB gate control, an input gain pot, a max gain trimmer, and a LPF/switchable HPF adjustable tone control, similar to the Big Muff, that allows for guitar or bass functions.  the mid shift switch allows anything from fat scooped bass, a dirty overdrive, or mid-heavy motorhead style grind.   for guitar, it's capable of anything from monster thick doom tones to mosquito sixties style fuzz. topped off with some sweet vintage knobs, it's a great switch-hitter.

as an aside, after taking this picture, i realized that i wired the center pots up a little tight, so i simply switched the two middle pots around. now, if the nuts loosen up, the wires on the pots won't get pulled out so easily. a word to the wise- leave enough slack on your pots!



well, i came up with another dirt pedal the other day.  lately, i've been experimenting with mixing different types of transistors together to achieve new tones, and this one kind of  takes that idea to the extreme.  it's designed under the premise that the stages increase in breakup as it goes along in the circuit, but instead of using stages that increase in gain, different types of transistors are used that exceedingly distort as the the circuit progresses.  for instance, the first gain stage is a silicon BJT.  this is used to get a decent push going and a very slight amount of drive.  next, is a MOSFET transistor, which like to distort a little easier, and in a bit more pleasing and richer way than the previous Si transistor.  finally, there is a germanium stage, which of course loves to distort in a very full and heavy overdrive, especially when driven by the previous gain stages.  the result is a very clear, yet complex crunch, that has a very nice character to it.  to round things out, in the beginning of the circuit is a JFET buffer, which helps to increase the current, and gives a nice high input impedance for the guitar pickup to see.  so in the end there is a total of 4 different types of transistors, each of which i tried to use to their optimum potential.  hence the name, the Four Horsemen Overdrive.

the tone control is a variation on the SWTC, but it has an added pole for a steeper rolloff.  the frequency point where the curve begins is rather high, so it is really more like a presence control- just taming the highest of frequencies, keeping the basic tone intact.

this circuit was spawned from a simpler design called the Nice Little Overdrive.  you can see the evolution in the thread over at FSB.


here is the schematic as it is in the latest version.

here is a pic of a vero layout that i built up.

and here is a quick video i made on my iphone.  the video is of the previous version without the high end rolloff presence control, and the bypass cap on the last stage, which adds a bit more gain.  the voice of the circuit is basically the same, but there is a little bit more flexibility.   of course the quality isn't the best, but you can get the idea!  ignore the man behind the camera.



someone asked for a clip of the Dirty Boots, so I dug one up. HERE is a soundclick page by danielzink where you can hear it. if you go to the second song down, it's in the micro pedal demo. you'll hear a phaser first, then the DB. I haven't listened to the clip in a while, so I'm not sure how accurate of a representation it is, but I'm sure it's close. thanks, Dan!