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What is a 'mosfet' and why do I want one?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by My name is Mudd, Apr 21, 2009.

  1. In the past few days, I've seen ads in the classifieds here for (for example) Fulltone Bassdrives in both mosfet and non-mosfet versions, which gives me the perfect opportunity to display my almost-total lack of knowledge concerning circuit-like stuff and ask what a 'mosfet' is, and why is it important, and other stuff like that there...
  2. Metal Oxide Semiconductor Field Effect Transistor

    Field Effect Transistors have a transfer curve similar to a tube, hence when they're overdriven sound a bit more "musical" than the square clipping of say a Bipolar Junction Transistor.

    MOSFETs can be driven to quite high gains and are therefore often used on the output stages of amplifiers (power MOSFETs)

    I don't know anything about fulltone bassdrives and couldn't tell you how either version sounds, however.
  3. Alcyon


    Jan 15, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    Subscribed out of curiosity. I also know the Hartke 3500s with mosfets are considered a lot better than the non-mosfet ones.
  4. Chronicle


    Sep 13, 2006
    My Mesa M6 is powered by Mosfets. It's the cleanest amp i've ever heard.
  5. MOSFET Really stands for Most Outrageous Sub Frequency -with- Excellent Tone :bassist:
  6. I got a Fulltone Bass Drive Mosfet last week and all I can say is that its one of the best distortion pedals i've used on bass...you wont be disappointed! :)
  7. Chronicle


    Sep 13, 2006
    That's just Mesa's way of saying it....but it's true :D
  8. I've also got the fulltone bass drive and love it, I've tried dozens of different drives, distortions, and fuzz pedals and the fulltone rules.
  9. afroman

    afroman Supporting Member

    Aug 31, 2000
    Austin, TX
    Hahah YES.
    My DB750 can attest to this.
  10. rcarraher


    Dec 21, 2008

    This post covers it. They do have a "tube" like sound and quality with out the finickyness of tubes...in other words they don't go bad as often.
  11. rcubed


    May 8, 2008
    Vista, CA
    Apparently they also compress the signal when saturated, similar to what tubes do.
  12. madmaskbass


    Apr 29, 2008
    whatever MOSFET means it is good...i own Mesa Big Block 750 hybrid amp- tube pre. MOSFET power stage...it is still my favourite head ever..would still love to own a 400+ though...

    redundant post i know.. i am also interested to know the answer to your question????
  13. So they're used as another form of tube emulation, to be blunt about it?
  14. B.C.

    B.C. Supporting Member

    Jun 28, 2005
    Mosfets, like said before are another way of clipping the signal. Different materials clip different ways, as we all know that silicon diodes clip much differently than germanium. Much like this, a MOSfet transistor will clip differently than a Bipolar Junction.

    Cool stuff, I haven't played much with them, but I think I'll dig in a bit. :)

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