1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Looking for a really dark fuzz

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by The Chancellor, May 14, 2003.

  1. I am currently running a Warwick Streamer Std. through:

    Marshall Jackhammer
    Danelectro French Toast
    FMR Audio RNC

    into a Marshall B150

    I want a new fuzz, preferably something with a really dark sound that is not a Big Muff. By dark I am implying really bassy with no room for any treble. I'd also like to keep it under $150.

  2. BryanB

    BryanB Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    frantone lo-tone
  3. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Oregon, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    I was going to give you actual advice, since, from your name, I thought you were a Justin Chancellor fan. Since it appears you're not, I'll tell you that you should try searching. (Zachary Vex Wooly Mammoth, ProCo Rat [which is The Real Chancellor's favorite fuzz] come to mind. But search.
  4. My tip:

    EBS MultiDrive: very fat overdrive pedal, but when you set that tiny switch to 'Flat' and maximize the drive knob you get a dark, fat and ballsy fuzz... try it out before you buy though, it might not be what you're looking for.

    Do you use that Marshall Jackhammer as your main overdrive pedal? How's the sound? Soundsamples?
  5. Paul A

    Paul A

    Dec 13, 1999
    Hertfordshire U.K!
    Errr.......... JLO? (sorry .....couldn't resist) :D
  6. conical johnson: I am a fan of Justin, he's insanely talented imho.

    Phyrexian: I am kind of using the jackhammer as a permanent boost/od to add just a hint of tube-ish tone to the equation, plus it has a graphic eq which is always handy since my bass is passive.

  7. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Fuzz by it's very nature adds treble.

    Fuzz is just harmonic distortion, which means generation of harmonics not present in the original signal. More upper harmonic content means treblier tone. It's that simple.

    All you need is one with an EQ that lets you roll off the highs to your taste...or use an EQ after the fuzz.
  8. stevekim


    Feb 11, 2000
    los angeles, ca
    one of the darkest fuzzes i've tried is the zvex woolly mammoth. i don't think the rat will give you the tone you're looking for.
  9. bassackwards

    bassackwards Member

    Dec 16, 2002
    Dark fuzz? Check out my buttcrack.


    I've got a bunch of fuzz pedals and I'd say you can get a "dark fuzz" best out of the DOD FX92 Bass Grunge. You can get them cheap on ebay. The BigMuff USA reissue is good but takes away attack and definition. Some want that sound, some don't. I don't know what you mean by "no room for any trebble" because it's not a really a fuzz sound if there's no crackle to it, IMO. I'd also get rid of that Jackhammer and Frenchtoast. I've owned both of those and they are real tone suckers and really rob your subharmonics whether they're on or off. I got rid of both. The way that you describe using your Jackhammer, I'd say replace it with a ZOOM PD-01 Power Driver (one of their analog pedals), a great OD for bass. The ZOOM PD-01 has recently become my main OD. Also, get rid of the Frenchtoast and get a Dunlop "Jimi Hendrix System" Octave Fuzz. It's better for bass and the everyone in Sonic Youth uses them. Hope any of that helps. Just suggestions.
  10. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    Definitely, no lack of bottom end with the zvex. You may be able to pick it up for $150 used, but more likely $175.

    The Frantone Lo-Tone lets you roll off the tone as well, new they're $180 and you usually see them used for about $110-$130
  11. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    A little over your budget, but I think a Prescription Electronics Depth Charge would please you.
  12. Hugh Jazz

    Hugh Jazz

    Sep 13, 2001
    Atlanta, GA
    For what it's worth, I treid a Wolly Mammoth today, and didn't really like it...at all.

    The thing had plenty of fuzz and grain, which was good, but the rest of the settings/knobs didn't really help too much. The EQ knob when turned to the left added a ton of low end, but it took away definition. Around 12:00 or so, it was a good balance, but just not chunky enough for my tastes. It felt like only a select band of frequencies were affected. :confused: When you turned it up high, you got a lot more treble/definition, but it just wasn't all that powerful. Too scratchy for my tastes.

    The Pinch knob was a gate (at least that's what I think it was...too lazy to look it up), and when turned all the way left (off), it added a ton of noise to the signal, especially when you don't play. Turning it up/right fixed this and made the tone a little crunchier/chunkier, but it felt like there was no "oomph" or power behind the notes. The higher you turn it, the more inconsistent sound you get, as anything remotely softer gets gated. This really sucks when you're playing anything moderately fast.

    To sum it up, I couldn't really get a good consistent sound that I liked enough to warrant a purchase (I got some nice distorted tones, but either it would be too wacky without enough definition or too blurry/wimpy). While I can see some uses for it, I think it would be better suited to a guitar than a bass. If it matters, I was playing a 5-string Corvette through a Genz Benz 400 something amp and a 6x10 cab. But yeah, my Digitech Bass Driver (testing it out) gets me a much more useable crunchy/fuzzy sound. Unfortunately it too is not quite what I want.
  13. bassackwards

    bassackwards Member

    Dec 16, 2002
    HughJazz, I completely agree with you about the Whooly Mammoth. I had the same experience with one and your description is acurate. It's also the one pedal that was not designed nor is it made by ZVEX. Some other guy makes them and then they get sent to ZVEX to get those um......interesting paintjobs.
    JazzAd, The Prescription electronics Depth Charge adds a slight upper octave so, I doubt if it's what this guy wants.
  14. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    Yup, I tried one decided the same thing. But if this guy is looking for that, well, 'woolly' sound then it might be what he wants.
  15. Hugh Jazz

    Hugh Jazz

    Sep 13, 2001
    Atlanta, GA
    That "wooly" sound was definitely not what I wanted. According to my guitarist, it sounded like the mammoth was dying rather than kicking ass.


    Nov 24, 2001
    New York,NY
    I tried a Wooly at Rudy's in NYC...I wanted to beat it with the bass & throw it out the damn window (3rd floor) because it sounded like total s**t!!! AND the sales guy RAVED about it! Go figure...

    However, the Carl Martin Heavy Drive was a hell of a lot better...

  17. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    The Mammoth is good, but definitely not 300 buck good.
    THe octave sound in the Depth Charge is mostly cancelled when you turn down the tone to the first third part of the course. It then gets really dark and mean.
  18. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    I own a Wooly Mammoth, and let me tell you, if you don't spend alot of time with it you won't realize it's worth. It also doesn't respond well to active basses. Active basses put out too much output, plus their impedence is different, altering the response of the fuzz. I've also found that just about every fuzz or distortions really sucks when you have a horn on in your cab. Distortion is very trebly by nature, and the horn will make it so it sounds like it thins out the entire tone. Hey, it's a funky pedal. The Wooly is great, but it does take time to realize how great it is.

    BTW, Chuck Zwicky designed the circuit. He is a friend of ZVex and didn't give him the design just so it would sell. ZVex makes them in his shop; it's just Chuck's design.
  19. JimS

    JimS Supporting Member

    Anybody try the Roger Mayer Bass Voodoo?
  20. stevekim


    Feb 11, 2000
    los angeles, ca
    i really like my black cat octave fuzz. it's supposedly a maestro bass brassmaster clone. the prescription depth charge is also supposed to sound like a maestro bass brassmaster but i found the black cat to be more versetile.