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Mutron (or any effect) worth > $250

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Jeff Moote, May 3, 2002.


  1. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada
    I dunno... I'm not convinced that ANY effect, even if it is the holy grail of whatever type it is is worth that... I'd like a mutron, but what makes it worth that dough that could be spent on other more valuable gear or non bass stuff... Unless you have the house, car, bass(es), and amp of your dreams, how do you justify this much on effects. I don't want to put anyone down for spending this, but I just want to know why/how...

    btw. Those of you with a real mutron (mad sub?) can you record a sample of some of it's sounds to show me exactly what it sounds like? I've never just heard one used alone.
     
  2. $250?! Sheesh pal..If you have to ask? Come back when you are ready to play with the big boys! :p
    I'm joshin' ya. You can go ahead and spend tons of dough on this or that filter or you can save your $$, draw from our wealth of experiance in throwing away our money on bad gimmicky junk and buy the RIGHT thing now. I paid $300 US for my AC-powered Mutron last year after spending about $500 on various other finnicky stuff that I just ended up moving along to other TB'ers. I would hope my various finacial indiscretions might benefit you folks...learn from my mistakes. $250 on a vintage 'Tron is a score, trust me. They were going for quite a bit more last year. I have never seen one for less than $350 in a music shop. Online transactions have seriously driven the prices down (lucky you!)

    New and cheaper Filters sound like getting hit in the face with a piece of dry toast. A funky old Mutron is more like getting swacked with a wet blanket if you follow my drift. Check out samples on Bootzilla's latest effort or George's TAPOAFOM; a beautiful album IMO. "Sloppy seconds" has some wicked, squelchy bass on it courtesy of the Boot-man hisself.
    Man...I do love EV filters...!
     
  3. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada
    ok... it sounds REALLY good. Agreed by all it is one of the best filters of all time. BUT:

    (a)why can't they make good reissues of stuff like that? parts are all there, and we have old ones to take apart.

    (b)what did they originally retail for? is the price only due to them being rare, or were they normally expensive? I mean, I love the meatball (esp on guitar: Re Radiohead's Ed) but I can't see >$200 USD being reasonable for an effect. Think of this: a device to make neat sounds costs that much. Sure it's fun, and when I have the money to spare, I'll get one too, but really, this isn't practical if you get many high dollar items for minor usage (note: Mad Sub uses his effects often, but many people wouldn't all the time [non dub/techno etc bands..])

    Ah well... the pains of GAS, and stupid vintage item inflation...
     
  4. Check out "P funk" by parlament... Quack, quack!

    To answer your question (b)...
    People always want to improove things, even if the origional is good enough. Simple human error.
     
  5. A "mint" Mutron can fetch any where up to $500. $275 is peanuts. My point is...spend your money on something of quality rather than buying a whole number of sub-standard items only to realize you should have bought the quality item in the first place. $500 is over-inflated, $275 is charity. If there is one thing I have learned in this world it is this; You get what you pay for. there is NO free lunch. The Mutron contains a special photocell circuit. Not many modern filters will get you close to the smooth and silky squelch of an original. Many are rough and awkward in their sweep. You can buy three hyundai's or one Volvo; you decide.
     
  6. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    Basically, it comes down to need/desire. I mean, if you can't justify the expense then it just isn't your bag. Some people think owning more than one bass is a waste of money, too. But, I can easily justify wanting to have different numbers of strings, fretless/fretted, flat/round, etc. I like having 8 basses around. It's a matter of personal preference more than anything else.

    As for the high cost of the effects, you don't get a leatherbound hardback book for the same price as a paperback. I have purchased more cheap effects than I care to remember. They always wore out, or had added hiss, or ruined the sound of the bass, so they were wastes of money. If I had the resources that are available now, I could have saved a bit of cash on some real dogs. But, now that I am older, and have more disposable income, I have been allowing myself better quality stuff as a more informed buyer (Heck, Funky alone has been a walking fount of information that has cured many a case of GAS :D).

    I just recently picked up an Alembic Sf-2 Superfilter for a great price, and they list for $800. But, it's easily worth it's cost, and the parts reflect the quality. Switchcraft jacks and custom made Clarostat pots aren't cheap. It's whisper quiet, and has an amazing ability to control my tone. But, to others, it might be a waste of a rack space to make your bass go "Bwooorp."
     
  7. spend a little now, or spend a lot later!!...I agree with everyone who posted here....but it's really up to you...
     
  8. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada
    Very good... I like the idea of buying quality the first time. However, my point on reissues stands: you can accurately repoduce anything that doesn't contain a banned material. This logic that a vintage effect is better than a well thought out reissue (not mutron reissue, it isn't the same, but could have been) fits right in with the logic that a vintage fender 40 years old sounds better and is thus worth more. For the same money you can get a sadowski that uses aged wood but higher quality everything else, but the idiots think old is good once again... What is with this backwards guitarist idea of "vintage gear"? Call it old, not vintage.
     
  9. I wouldn't expect ANY filter to be of a very high standard, "vintage" "modern" or otherwise that was $100 or less. I am all about the "handmade" "boutique" style of production, more of a craft really. Mass-produced items (read: cheap/ affordable) can only hope to emulate the hands-on approach of days gone by. These are very good questions..I understand where you are coming from. Some sleazy folk relish driving up the price of some items to be sure, based on "mystique" and lore. The Mutron certainly fell into that category. Lately though, prices have been driven seriously down. You can get a simplistic filter for cheap but iot will almost certainly lack character. For a wee bity more coin, you will find yourself with a unique and wonderful tool. I think this is really relavant to things like filters and cool OD boxes. Soon all mass-produced boxes will be digital as the cheap analog chips have been used up. Only the point-to-point stuff will remain analog. I'll pay for the funk of a Frantone, Prescription electronics or Angler over a Boss or Ibanez anyday; for me it is DEFINTELY worth it. There IS a certain vibe with old gear...only when it is something of lasting quality would I consider it worth it. I think we're on the same page here...
     
  10. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada
    "handmade" and "boutique" are very different from "vintage". Here, though, I think we are on the same page. Yes the price of handmade stuff is reasonable, but you must agree that old combined with handmade doesn't make it worth even more. A so called boutique company of today could ACCURATELY reissue the mutron or anything should they get the rights to and want to. The thing is they don't, and the old/rare stuff becomes more expensive. The big question is: why don't boutique builders make these for less than the vintage ones, we know they can!
     
  11. You'd be hard pressed to find ANY good filter for less than $150 my friend. Cost of the modern III+ is now almost the same as the (very different and superior) vintage one so you win really. Look at comparable sounding boxes; Agent 00Funk, Meatball, Mutron III+, Frostwave, all of these hover around the $200 mark (or more.) Cheap ones like the Boss, DOD or Ibanez hover around $100 but don't come close sound wise.
     
  12. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada
    ok... conclusion coming:


    ...


    The old mutron's worth it's stuff, but so called vintage instruments and so on are not... The difference is that the alternatives do not compare to the mutron whereas the instruments of today worth the same as vintage ones are way better.

    Thanks mad sub...
     
  13. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    Um...no, not really....You simply can't sum up an instrument in such black/white terms. If the stuff wasn't worth the money people are getting for it, then they wouldn't be selling it at those prices, dig? Don't go knocking a vintage instrument just because it isn't worth that price to you.

    I'm sorry--there is something magical about a battle scarred '62 Jazz Bass--whether it is quantifyable, or not.
     
  14. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada
    Alright, I don't want to threaten or make things unhappy, but there's no "magic" in anything. If there's a difference, it's real and in the materials. "Vintage" (old) instruments may have (and often did) have better wood in them, making them great sounding, but you can't say it's better sound quality and better construction than you can get in something modern worth what the "vintage" instrument is. In all, the old fenders and such are great (my teacher has a '63 strat, and it's awesome) but not as good as what you can get for their worth.
     
  15. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    As usual, this is all opinions... and I disagree. There is "magic" in gear. The "magic" is when "you" put it in "your" hands and it does "something" for "you". Sounds like maybe that hasn't happened for you (yet?) and it has for Bassmonkeee. I look forward to the next time it happens for me.

    Here's something you're missing: someone making a new instrument will find it very hard to replicate the playing time and aging of older instruments. It sounds like you don't think instruments can improve with age.

    You can try to be pragmatic and look at all of this with an unblinking, critical, "logical" eye but you'll miss the parade... until you play a bass (or try other gear) that has "something" vs. a similar one that doesn't, this will probably all remain a mystery...

    New isn't always better... neither is old. It depends.

    BTW it's 2002. $250? Is a Mutron III worth two pairs of Nikes?
     
  16. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada

    So now the supernatural is more than a myth? C'mon, vintage gear is cool, but there's no magic, and to me, it's not worth the dough. To each his own...



    Playing time has no bearing, aging does however. All aging does, is make stuff older, which with wood, can make it sound better :D



    I admit, logic rules w/me. I like things that are entirely factual (maths for example) that I can actually see/hear/feel etc.



    This is true...


    I won't buy $125 Nikes, I'll buy airwalks (for example, my last pair) on sale for $20. $250 is a lot of money as a student.

    -----------------

    All in all, I don't want to start any arguments: vintage stuff is good, new has the potential to be better all times. Have fun whatever you like! :)
     
  17. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings