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The magic difference of Muffs.

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Driven Crane, Jan 9, 2017.

  1. Driven Crane

    Driven Crane

    May 30, 2014
    This thread about Muffs.
    I have had some of them (as i remember):
    1. Bass Big Muff (just not impressed)
    2. Swollen Pickle (2 times, hard to control, very good for solo)
    3. Bass Big Muff Deluxe (small amount of headroom, useless crossover)
    4. Unknown DIY Russian Green Muff (not bad at all, but it was not original - unfortunately)
    5. Muff in Empress Multidrive, sure.
    Now i am going to buy Pharaoh for 100 bucks. Still thinking about Swollen Pickle vs Pharaoh.
    Here you can tell about your own Muff Experience.
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2017
  2. dvlmusic


    Jul 24, 2010
    Alameda, CA
    I have a green Sovtek Muff I bought new in the 90's

    (not my actual one but I have this same model)

    I love it and would never get rid of it. For a while I was looking to find someone to house the guts in a smaller box and fix it to help make it less noisy, but I just found out in the last couple months that these are extremely desirable and worth money, so not I'm definitely not messing with it.

    Bought it immediately once I found out Robert Sledge from Ben Folds Five was using one. He has the best fuzz bass tone I've ever heard, so of course I had to copy it ;)
  3. Noylin

    Noylin Supporting Member

    May 28, 2014
    Best muffs I've tried: COG Grand Tarkin - mids, blend, top of the heap. SGFX Imperial - amazingly articulate, really great sounding. And the one that stayed on my board the longest is the Vick Black Russian - no frills, just sounds great.

    All of these have a mid control.
    IngloriousOz, Sartori, MDBass and 4 others like this.
  4. Planespotter


    Oct 11, 2015
    I've owned a couple original Sovtek green Russians, a couple of Sovtek Black Russians, several NYC Big Muffs, a couple of hoofs (regular and cloven), the Blackout Musket V2, the Blackout Twosome, w&c Pickle Pie B, Way Huge Swollen Pickle mkii, a Black Arts Pharaoh, and probably others thatbim forgetting. The Cloven Hoof is my favorite, but I really like the Pickle Pie too.
  5. wncBass


    Jan 2, 2015
    North Carolina
    Ive owned the w&c pickle pie b and w&c tall font russian. Liked both but kept the tall font, its lower gain than the pickle pie and just sounds awesome.
    blindrabbit likes this.
  6. Swimming Bird

    Swimming Bird

    Apr 18, 2006
    Wheaton MD
    Sanford and Sonny Bluebeard is the awesome. I got a newer one with the tone bypass - so many sweet spots, can sound like speakers catching on fire thru wall of sound.

    Tried out a Box of War a bit ago, it sounded great and grindy but came off as a little subtle for my taste. Had a NYC 2000s reissue like a decade ago which I liked for a while and flipped (IIRC I wanted other pedals at the time).
  7. Driven Crane

    Driven Crane

    May 30, 2014
    can you tell me about Pharaoh? between it and Swollen Pickle - is it a big difference? which one is better for ya?
  8. AndyLES


    Aug 25, 2008
    New York
    Heh, the crossover is perhaps the only thing that makes the BBMD useful, lol. I use a VT bass for dirt, and the Muff Deluxe running INTO the VT (also on) for intentionally synthy/guitary tones (i.e., special effects).
  9. basscow


    Apr 19, 2011
    The best muffs I've ever used are the green and black russians from EHX themselves... There's just something right about them.
  10. SunnBass

    SunnBass All these blankets saved my life.

    Aug 31, 2010
    Columbia, Mo
    Hail Satan Deluxe from Abominable Electronics.
    Separate volume controls for clean and dirt plus a mids knob, two Muff variants and a buffer to boost clean signal...it just doesn't get any better. I've been through a ton of fuzz before this, and just as an experiment, keep trying new ones. This thing can't be dethroned.


    Last edited: Jan 9, 2017
  11. dinoadventures

    dinoadventures Feets don't fail me now!

    Jul 10, 2015
    Dallas, TX
    It's great, to be sure, but the Grand Tarkin instantly unseated it for me. That said, the one or two good sounds it makes are really stinkin' good.
    blindrabbit likes this.
  12. SunnBass

    SunnBass All these blankets saved my life.

    Aug 31, 2010
    Columbia, Mo
    I haven't had a chance to try one of those yet, I'd like to.
    I do love the HSD, and yes, it's not super versatile but it does its job so well, however the sheer amount of real-estate it takes up is kind of annoying.
    gregmon79 and dinoadventures like this.
  13. mmbongo

    mmbongo Five Time World Champion Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Too bad the JHS Muffuletta is largely ignored. It's at least as good as any boutique Muff I've had, and much better than 80% of them. It's killer having 6 different Muffs built into one pedal!

  14. +1 to the comments on the Tarkin and Imperial. The best muff tone I've ever heard is from a vintage Sovtek Green Bubble Font of mine. The W&C TFR was my first introduction to muffs many years ago, and it still holds a special place in my heart.
    Matt Dean likes this.
  15. Planespotter


    Oct 11, 2015
    The Pharaoh is a lot less extreme than the Pickle MKII. It's super easy to get a good heavy sound with the Pharaoh, and it really shines pushing the front end of a tube amp hard. I didn't like it as much into a clean amp. The Swollen Pickle can get some cool sounds, but I quickly got tired of how finicky it could be and sold it fairly quickly. The Pickle Pie on the other hand is very easy to get a good sound out of and has a very well implemented clean blend. It's maybe not as crazy/extreme as the Swollen Pickle, but it can get plenty nasty enough.
    Driven Crane likes this.
  16. The Pharaoh is pure magic in a mix. Even as popular as it is I think a lot of people try it and don't really get it. You really need to hear it in the context of a loud mix with multiple instruments stacked on top of each other.
  17. I've only had personal experience with trying 2 different Muffs which were the EHX BBM which I could never find a setting that worked for me no matter where I set it! It would sound ok solo but then completely disappear in a mix. I also recently acquired a W&C TFR in a trade on here and while it's decidedly superior to the BBM I'm still on the fence on whether or not I want to keep it. It sounds great solo and is much better in a mix but I guess I'm just not sure if I'm in love with the Muff style of fuzz or not. I also thinking I could flip it for something else and if needed get a more than usable Muff style sound out of my SA Aftershock!
    russellh86 likes this.
  18. Pharaoh Supreme. And done.

    Tried other muffs, but this one simply works, and has so many options I couldn't imagine not being able to get the tones I need from a fuzz. That being said, I'm not wanting crazy oscillation or anything, but this fuzz delivers.

    Also has the Swollen Pickle, but it was really tough to dial in. Could get great tones with some time though. It's the second for me, after the Pharaoh.

    Plenty of dudes here have a lot more fuzz and muff experience than I do, but I just know that the Pharaoh Supreme definitively ended my fuzz quest. Have one for each board, and am not looking back.
    Driven Crane likes this.
  19. REV


    Jun 18, 2006
    To each his own but I got the Way Huge Swollen Pickle II precisely because it was easier to control. I really like it.
    Driven Crane and Sartori like this.
  20. deepestend

    deepestend Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 21, 2003
    Brooklyn via Austin and NOLA
    Guitar/Bass Builder and Social Media at Sadowsky
    Love the pharaoh. Built a clone and really like it. Can go from a dirty boost to a great fuzz.

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