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Barber Trifecta mini-review

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by dancehallclasher, Mar 12, 2008.

  1. Just got one to replace my Little Big Muff. Disclaimer: I don't have a ton of experience with different fuzzes and I wasn't able to crank up to gig volume yet or hear it in a band mix.

    Physical: The box is exactly the same size as the LBM, but made with some awkward choices. The in/out jacks are way down toward the bottom of the sides, and the power jack is just above the input jack on the side! It wasn't a problem with my Pedaltrain but if you plan to set this up on a cramped, flat board, I could see it being an issue. See post #440 in the current pedalboard pics thread for a peek. The knob turns feel nice and smooth except for the tone knob, which has a different feel because it's a pull-out knob (more on that later).

    Sound: So, I was expecting some drastically different sounds from the 3-way circuit switch. No dice, though; this is more subtle, at least on bass. I'm thinking that this pedal will shine as a tweaker's dream to overcome weird-sounding rooms and sit right in different mixes rather than as some swiss-army-knife of fuzzes. Anyway, I did a lot of tweaking and I keep coming back to the middle setting, called "Jumbo Bender." It's a nice "open" sound; the LBM sounds really pinched compared to this pedal, even on the "Tri Pi" setting. Also it isn't as quick to feed back in between notes as much as the LBM, which I guess demonstrates less compression.

    I really like the knob voicings on this pedal. Your sound is not going to change drastically if you nudge your settings a tad; I like this because it gives you a lot of room to dial in the sound you want. I can't really turn the sustain on the LBM up past 9:00 or it gets too nuts, but the Trifecta is definitely usable from the bottom to the top of the "Fuzz" dial.

    The "tone" and "sludge" knobs seem to interact in a way that'll make you spend some time learning how to use them. As far as I understand, the "Sludge" control is like a passive bass filter; start with it fully clockwise and dial it back to tighten things up. I'm ending up with the tone knob around noon and the sludge knob at 3:00 or higher for a bassy yet defined sound.

    Pulling out the tone knob changes it to flat response rather than the default "scooped mid" vintage sound this pedal is trying to emulate. I'm preferring the knob-out flat-mid sound right now, but as with the switch this is more subtle than I expected. Not a HUGE difference but certainly useful.

    I guess that's about it. I'll try to report back after I've played it with a band, and seeing as I have some free time next week I'll try to record some clips.

    edit: Okay, a demo clip. I decided not to even try to demonstrate all the options because figuring out how to organize that was hurting my brain... besides, like I said, the voice switch is really subtle on bass so maybe it's not even worth it.

    So I just put it on the setting I'm digging right now: tone at noon (knob pulled for flat mids), sludge at 4:00, fuzz around 10:30, middle setting on the switch. See how you like it, I guess. I started with my SABDDI off and then clicked it on after a few seconds, that's the EQ change you'll hear. Played with a pick except for the Shins cover in the middle there.

  2. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    Dangit. I don't need MORE GAS.
  3. The BurgerMeister

    The BurgerMeister musician.

    Apr 13, 2006
    Big Bear, CA
    thanks for the review!
  4. Okay updated first post with a clip
  5. Sweet, thanks! Listening low because it's late but I'll check it out again tomorrow a bit louder. Sounds good.
  6. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    Sounds like another cool pedal. I finally got around to listening to the clip

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