Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Where's are my articles!!

so a couple of weeks ago I noticed that the table I used for the "Stompbox Articles" page had been completely reformatted and basically erased. So I took down that page as not to confuse anyone, or myself, until we could get it fixed. 

After checking out the "official blogger help forum" I realized that this was a problem a lot of fellow nerds were having... but fast forward to today, and we are now, finally back in action!

 So thank you google for helping out the little guys who are just trying to entertain their readers in an badass, yet organized, fashion. It is going to take me a few more hours to get it all rewritten, but the Stompbox Articles page will be up shortly.

Thanks for your patience.

Monday, August 20, 2012

nice days, all around.

So I just scored myself another Fender Blender (that makes 5!), and even though that seems excessive, I will tell you that just like the Big Muff, the Fender Blenders do sound different from year to year.  My favorite being from 1974.  So I lucked out today and found another one from that year; paid down, and it's on its way to Nashville!

So in preparation I am playing through my beat up '74 Fender Blender, with a broken switch, that sounds incredible.  Seriously, if you can find one from this year, get it!

full post on the new child when she arrives.
until then, have this crappy camera phone pic///
Thanks for reading! -ed

Special little Honey Fuzzzzz

These things are freaking cool!
finally a straight demo of the Honey Special Fuzz///

for more nerdy info, check this link:here
Thanks for watching!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Zonk II, yowzah!

Check out this short, but sweet, demo of an original 1967 John Hornby Skewes Zonk II fuzz.

 And here are a couple of pics of this blue machine of death, thanks to LA Guitar Shop.

Thanks for watching! -ed

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

This is actually a really good Fender Blender demo!

There really aren't that many good demos out there, but this one is pretty nice overall.
I'm guessing its a '68 or '69 Blender...
 check it out// thanks for watching.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Swirly Shifting

Check out this sexy gut shot of the Maestro PS-1b Phase Shifter!
(still one of the best)
Thanks for reading! -ed

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Guyatone Sustainer FS-6 (1973)


Welcome back!
This week we review and take a look at this strange, circular newcomer to the family. After searching for a few years to find one of these, my persistence had finally paid off and I was able to pluck this muffy disc of DOOM straight from the powerful grips of the Japanese Fuzz World...

The Guyatone Sustainer FS-6 is definitely an oddity of early 70's Japan. It looks like a Fuzz Face, named as if it's just going to be some sort of compressor, and then acts like a full-on Big Muff (with a hint a Jumbo Tonebender thrown in the mix). These were made for just one year, from 1973 through the end of 1974, and were sold exclusively in Japan, where 90% of them still reside today. In fact, I am not sure how many are Stateside, but I personally only know of 1 other FS-6 that currently lives here in the U.S.

Guyatone made some very cool fuzzes in the late 60's and up through the mid 70's. First was the Guyatone Bazz Box FS-1, which you may recognize from my "On the Hunt" page, next were two Super Fuzz clones, the Buzz Box FS-2 and later, the Fuzz FS-3. Then they made a couple of wahs, and finally, the beast we will talk about today... The Sustainer FS-6. Guyatone, much like the rest of the early Japanese pedal makers, put out their versions of already popular effects. Maybe changing a component or two here and there, but overall you could tell where the ideas came from. Although not being purists, I'm sure most of you don't care how the inspiration evolved, as long as it sounds awesome (and looks cool too!). Around 1974/75 Guyatone's line of pedals changed from that original "FS" Series to the newer, smaller, MXR inspired "PS" Series; which then became the OEM manufacturer for VOX's V-Shaped Series.

OK, back to the matter at hand.

First, let's talk about the look of this thing. It's funny when you read old ads for guitar pedals, especially fuzz. So many of them allude to Jimi Hendrix, or flat out say you are going to sound just like him if you use their pedals. But obviously the man himself only used a handful of fuzzes in his live and recording sessions. The most notable is obviously the Fuzz Face. So then it's no surprise that Guyatone decided to make a very Fuzz Face-esque enclosure for the FS-6, even going as far as to try and match the blue hammerite paint of the late 60's Si FF's. But they must not have liked the circuit that much because I can't, off the top of my head, think of ANY vintage Japanese Fuzz Face clones besides the Crazy Face/Sears Fuzz? But I can definitely ramble off about 15 to 20 Big Muff and Super Fuzz clones.

So then what is the FS-6 Sustainer?
What else, but my fav!!!

The FS-6 is a chunky, hairy Big Muff at heart; although it does have a few deviations from it's father circuit. Unlike any version of a true Electro Harmonix Big Muff, it has a FET input stage, hence the 3 transistors instead of 4, and also the output buffer has been omitted, like in a Colorsound Jumbo Tonebender (Thanks Analogguru!).
So what does this mean soundwise?
Well, I really have no idea___.
But I can go into pure detail of what the FS-6 does exactly, and what it sounds like.
so there./.

If I could compare it to any other fuzz out there it would actually be our old friend, the Jordan Creator. Both the FS-6 and the Creator are lower gain than any production versions of the Big Muff. But this doesn't mean that they are weak; just simply that at maximum Gain they are not your typical Muffy all out fuzz devastation!

Instead they like to dim the lights, put on some Hawkwind, take a trip down the spiral galaxy and request that you just chill out, man.

The FS-6 does two things very well; it handles chords amazingly, giving you that great harmonic crunch you expect from a Muff, but without any flubbing or mud in the low end. It also belts out some bad ass singing solo's. For all you classic rock dudes it can easily pull that pure Woman Tone; and like a violin, it seems to glide smoothly from one note to the next (just in case you have any big trippy, reverby soloing urges).

It's really an all around awesome sounding Muff variation. There are only 2 challenges with this pedal. Again, like in most vintage Japanese fuzzes, there is a volume drop when the fuzz is engaged. It's not as terrible as some of the fuzz/wah's, but it's definitely there. Also, unlike most Big Muffs, the FS-6 does not really respond to your guitar's volume changes, and instead it will stay fuzzy all the way down to Mute. Some people will find these things as drawbacks, but I see it as a case of "that's just the way it is." And if those are the worse things about it, that's fine with me :)

The Guyatone Sustainer FS-6 is another gem of early Japanese fuzz-life that get's me even more pumped to continue on and find all of the other stomps from that era. When I do, and maybe with a little help from you, I will bring them here so we can all check em out in gross detail.

Until next time, have a good one everybody.///

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

vintage Tonebender MK I.V demo!

This awesome Tonebender MK I.V just popped up on ebay and the seller was kind enough to let us hear it on the youtubes.

check it out!

thanks for watching!