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Gnomeratron VTF - a nasty muff with blend: prototype review

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by jrmy, Jun 14, 2010.

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  1. jrmy


    Dec 19, 2009
    Rhode Island
    If any of you fine people are also on I Love Fuzz, this is a cross-post, so hopefully you already know the details. But this is about a pedal that's definitely suited to us low-enders, so I thought it warranted posting here as well.

    Last week, I got wind that McSpunkle (from Ilovefuzz.com, and I think TB as well) was working on a secret project with lots of knobs and switches. I sent him a PM with something creative & witty in the subject line like "I KAN HAZ, PLEEZE? DROOOOOOL..." And then on Friday, it arrived on my doorstep! To test, of course, not to keep. Dr. McSpunkle still wants to tweak his little creation, but I have to say that for a prototype, it's pretty damn bitchin'.

    Apparently, this thing started life as Spunkies' take on a Big Muff, only narsty & glitchy. Then he added a sorta-clean blend (which kicks ass on its own - it certainly adds some heft to the cleans), diode switches, a phase-canceling octave section in the middle, a gate control, and a tone control that can go flat or scoopedy. When I saw it in person, I went: :eek::eyebrow::eek:

    However, for an unlabeled pedal with five knobs and four toggles, it's very user friendly. Definitely a pedal that screams for bass (what with the cleanish blend and all), but I think it could work on guitar - given the way the clean blend fattens up the tone, it seems like doomy stoner stuff would be a gimme. But with the oscillations & fizzy octave possibilities & gate, just about any fuzz-friendly genre could make use of this thing! Hell, the ability to dial in woolly muffy tones with a gate makes this ideal even for regular ol' rock & roll. And the clean blend on it's own has some serious boosting power - anyone wanting to drive their tube amp hard would do well with this sucker. So clearly, there's a little something for everyone. Everyone who loves fuzz, that is.

    But how does it sound? Well, funny you should ask! I spent a little time recording with it, and have a clip right here for ya! I hope you don't mind the same riff being played over and over, since that's what I do here (at least until I start gaffing it up towards the end). This was recorded with my Fender Jazz, going bass > Gnomeratron FTF > Line 6 Bass Pod > M-audio Fast Track Pro > Garageband. The settings breakdown goes like this:

    0:00 - clean
    0:11 - blend only
    0:25 - blend + knob 1
    0:40 - blend + knob 2
    0:55 - blend + knob 2 & 3
    1:13 - blend + all knobs
    1:34 - blend, all knobs, toggle 1
    1:52 - blend, all knobs, toggle 2
    2:14 - blend, all knobs, toggle 3
    2:36 - blend, all knobs, toggle 4
    2:53 - blend, all knobs, toggles 1 + 3
    3:17 - blend, all knobs, toggles 2 + 4
    3:36 - blend, all knobs, all togges
    4:00 - blend, all on, less gate
    4:17 - blend, all knobs, toggle 3, less gate
    4:40 - blend, knobs 1-3, toggle 3, gated muffy
    4:57 - no blend, all toggles, all knobs, gated
    5:21 - no blend, all on, more fizz, less gate
    5:43 - blend, all on, more fizz, less gate, general wankery

    It should be noted that I could have gone on for much, much longer - the knobs and toggles are all very interactive, and there are many, many more tones to be had here. I did not keep track of exact knob settings since this thing is going to be tweaked a little more before its official release (mostly the toggles will be tweaked, but still... also, I am lazy).

    The clip I recorded is a little hugetastic, so I've uploaded it to Soundcloud - to hear it, go to http://soundcloud.com/thewyrrejimes/gnometastic

    Attached Files:

  2. dannybuoy


    Aug 3, 2005
    I will be keeping my beady little eye on this one. :ninja:
  3. jetofuj


    Jun 16, 2008
    Do we really need another Muff :bag:
  4. Yes. Always.
  5. Wow, that sounds killer. Any idea how much it's gonna cost if/when it becomes available?
  6. jrmy


    Dec 19, 2009
    Rhode Island
    It's partially going to depend on the last round of tweaks and how much material & work they add to the build. He ran the prices by me, and I think it's very affordable, even at what he was scoping out for the top end. But since I'm not the one selling it, I don't feel comfortable giving out precise prices.

    But put it this way, we're not talking Klon Centaur ranges here. Not even Malekko B:assmaster ranges at what he was describing to me.
  7. McSpunckle


    Feb 15, 2008
    Fun thing about Muffs is... a Muff isn't just a Muff. They come in all sorts of sizes, shapes and colours. Some are smooth, and some are gritty. Some are used by everyone, while some are used by a select few that love their special Muff. There's a Muff for everyone! You just have to find yours.

    Anyways, I don't know if there are any rules about pimping your stuff here, so I'll just say -yes- you'll be able to buy one, in some form, if you want. I have the design and layout, there's no reason I can't build you one if you want.

    Pricing on the final version isn't 100% solid yet, but Jrmy's description is correct. It'll be affordable. Pending interest (actually, I'm building it for myself and a one or two other people no matter what), I'm going to build a real production one, and I'll post gut shots and such so you can see that it's not a shoddy pedal (I'd post guts of this proto, but you know how protos are... wires everywhere).

    So yeah, thanks for the clip, Jrmy! And thanks for the interest the rest of you!
  8. Mudfuzz


    Apr 3, 2004
    Beautiful McSpunckle just beautiful hug.gif
  9. dannybuoy


    Aug 3, 2005
    Can we start having name suggestions in this thread? The McSpunkle Nasty Muff is a good candidate!
  10. warwick.hoy


    Aug 20, 2006
    Spokane, WA.
    Beta Tester: Source Audio.
    This pedal sounds great.
  11. Robertron


    Feb 12, 2010
    NewYork, NY
    And I thought I was done with Muffs. :scowl:

  12. McSpunckle


    Feb 15, 2008
    For those interested:

    The final changes are going to be that the fuzz output is internally boosted, and there will be a tone control to cut highs from the clean blend-- for those of you that only want low end. You silly buggers, you. <3

    There will also be trimmers for gain at specific stages.

    Just because I hate secrets-- the price is gonna be under $150, and I'll be willing to build them for anyone interested as soon as I have a final production version built.
  13. Dale D Dilly

    Dale D Dilly Monster

    Jul 1, 2008
    I don't know if you can even get away with calling it a muff anymore, but I do know it just made its way to the top of my GAS list. And that price range means that, unlike a lot of the gear I GAS for, I'll actually be able to buy it! Subscribed as well.
  14. Happynoj


    Dec 5, 2006
    I like turtles.
    I like it. I'm just going to pop a post in here to make it easier to find when I get the deposit back on my flat... :D
  15. awsome...for that price im definitely interested, Everyone always needs at least one more fuzz pedal
  16. TheMutt

    TheMutt Guest

    Apr 28, 2007
    Why must I always GAS for more fuzz? :bawl:
  17. Mudfuzz


    Apr 3, 2004
    Because fuzz = coolness! Don't fight it just roll with it:D
  18. warwick.hoy


    Aug 20, 2006
    Spokane, WA.
    Beta Tester: Source Audio.
    It's a sad slippery slope,...definitely color me interested.
  19. Robertron


    Feb 12, 2010
    NewYork, NY
    Put me down for one.


    Edit: Seriously.
    Edit2: Is it being called the Gnomeratron VTF? If so, what does VTF stand for? And also if so, +1 awesome pedal points for ending in "tron"...
  20. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    this sounds pretty sweet actually.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Jan 20, 2021

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