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#1
The (un)Official Muff Love thread

A thread for discussing all things Muff. Ask for suggestions, talk about pedals, discuss bands that use them, anything Muff related. If you enjoy the sounds of thick Muffy goodness, post away!


A Brief History
Further Reading

The first true Big Muff was developed by Mike Matthew's company, Electro Harmonix, around 1969 to 1970. They aimed to build a pedal with violin sustain, and a fuzzy grinding distortion. It worked. Ever since then musicians have been using the Big Muff for it's distinctive sound and thick distortion.


Notable Variations
Further Reading

Triangle Big Muff
The Triangle Big Muff was the first version of the Big Muff. Production ran from 1970 to 1973. The Triangle is a heavily sought after Big Muff, and is known to have some inconsistencies from pedal to pedal.

Ram's Head Big Muff
Version 2 of the Big Muff went into production in 1973. It's called the Ram's Head for the symbol that was placed on the pedal during it's run. This pedal is one of the most wanted by collectors and players a like. It has also been cloned by several pedal making companies.

OP-Amp Big Muff
In 1978 Electro Harmonix released a new variant of the Big Muff. This one incorporated OP-Amp chips rather than the four transistor design that had been used on all other Big Muffs. This pedal was discontinued in 1980. Some people don't like the sound of the OP-Amp Big Muff, though others prefer it. This version was used on Smashing Pumpkin's Siamese Dream album.

Red Army Overdrive
Released in 1990. This is the first Big Muff made after the Electro Harmonix bankruptcy. Mike Matthews had yet to acquire the the rights to the Electro Harmonix name, so it wasn't released under their name. This was the first of the pedals to be produced in Russia.

Civil War Big Muff
Released in 1990. This is the first Russian Big Muff made under the Electro Harmonix name. It's nearly identical to the Red Army Overdrive. The Russia Big Muffs are noted for having relatively less gain and a darker "midsy" sound compared to their American counterparts.

Green Russian Big Muff
The Green Russian's were released in 1994, and replaced the Civil War Bug Muff. The first version was almost exactly the same as the Civil War, but later versions were given different cap values to produce a different sound.

Black Russian Big Muff
The Black Russian's were released in 1998. They are nearly identical to the last version of the Green Russian, but with a different box and color. These have been discontinued, but the Bass Big Muff is aimed to recreate the tones of the Russian Big Muffs.


Current Variations
Further Reading

NYC Reissue Big Muff
The Reissue was released in 2000, and was made to sound like the vintage Big Muffs. The Reissue isn't actually a the same as any of the older pedals, but is very similar.

Little Big Muff
The Little Big Muff was released in 2006. It sounds like the Reissue, but is made with smaller parts and a smaller enclosure to better fit on pedal boards.

Bass Big Muff
Released in 2008. It's based on the discontinued Russian Big Muff, but doesn't sound exactly the same. It is possible to get many of the same tones from it on the right settings. It comes with a toggle switch that lets you choose between Bass Boost, Normal, and Dry.

Tone Wicker Big Muff
Released in 2009. It can get the same tones as the Little Big Muff, but can cover even more with the two toggle switches. The Wicker switch adds more highs to the signal, and makes the distortion sharper, but not harsh. The Tone switch control weather or not the tone circuit is bypassed. With it off it bypasses the circuit. If you set it with the Tone on and Wicker off it sounds the same as the Little Big Muff.

Germanium 4 Big Muff
Released in 2010. The Germanium 4 is very different than all the other Big Muffs. One side is a very tweakable distortion, and the other is an adjustable overdrive. It's not like a regular at all Big Muff, but is billed as Muff nonetheless.


Notable Clones

In Progress
Last edited by Kcintlob at Sep 2, 2010,
#2
Give me suggestions on what to fix, and what I should put under the clone section.

I couldn't find a Big Muff thread, but if there is one you can lock this.

:3
#4
I have the reissue NYC Big Muff and love the sound of it. At first, I'll admit that I thought it sounded crap, but time passed and twaeking occured and I don't think I could live without it now.
#5
Quote by Alex Vik
I have a bass big muff.

I'm not a big fan of it


Same here, I had a NYC big muff, the tone for guitar wasn't bad, but I prefered using it for my bass. IMHO I think the muff is a bit overrated. I didn't get a good a tone as I thought I would get, and in the end I ended up selling it.
#6
My friend's NYC Big Muff sounded awesome boosted with my BD-2. The combination just urges you to do a guitar solo haha.

I'm thinking of buying the Tone Wicker version.
Gear
Fender Hotrod Deville 2x12
Fender MIM Strat | Epi Dot 335
Fulltone '69 mkii | Boss OD-1
'95 RAT2 | '78 IC Big Muff | DL4
#7
modded my nyc with a noise gate and reverse power supply and absolutely love it!
mojostompboxes.com
#8
Any suggestions on some good clones? I wanna fill out that section, but I don't know a whole lot of them. I know there's the Stomp Under Foot stuff, and the Blackout Effector pedals. What else?
#9
I have a Bass Big Muff, I really like it. Works really well with guitar and bass.
I do love me a muff.
"In modern music, a lot of people are really stuck on the example, asif it were the idea. It takes millions of examples to articulate an idea, so don't get stuck on the f*cking example." - Joshua Homme, 2008.
#10
Quote by nightraven
(Invalid img)

here's mine

greatest big muff clone ever, i can't stop showing it off


That's a muff? I hadn't ever heard of it before. Have any clips of it? I love listening a new Muff.
#11
I love my old big box muff......
___________________________
Playing on some new gear....review to follow
#12
I have the Russian Muff and love it. Just wish it had a smaller housing. A Muff is like Guiness beer. It's an acquired taste. You just have to give it a chance.
#13
Quote by nightraven
here's a clip i made when i got the pedal http://www.soundclick.com/bands/page_songInfo.cfm?bandID=939144&songID=8896255
it's apparently a copy of the violet ram's head big muff with input and output buffers and a different value tone pot which all results in a more 'open' sound

Sounds awesome! Nice find, I may add it to the clone list once I build it up a bit more.

I'm mostly looking for good clones of old vintage Muffs. I know about SUF and the Blackout stuff, but what else is there? I'm not the greatest at searching new pedals.


Quote by fly135
I have the Russian Muff and love it. Just wish it had a smaller housing. A Muff is like Guiness beer. It's an acquired taste. You just have to give it a chance.

Right now I've only got my Little Big Muff, but I can't wait to get my hands on a good Ram's Head or Civil War. If I'm lucky (and suddenly have some money) I want to get the originals of them both.
Last edited by Kcintlob at Sep 2, 2010,
#14
The black russian isnt the same as the green russian for the record. Theres a few minute differences in values of the components.



Dunno how much of a difference it makes tho.
#15
Quote by beckyjc
The black russian isnt the same as the green russian for the record. Theres a few minute differences in values of the components.

(Invalid img)

Dunno how much of a difference it makes tho.


Thanks! I was actually coming to ask if I had messed up anywhere in the post. I went ahead and changed it to "nearly identical".

Anything else I messed up on? I'm no Big Muff expert by any means, but since no one had made this thread yet I figured I would.
#16
I like my Little Big Muff, but it seems so midless that its hard to apply to jams.
Quote by progbass
right Metallica is a given. Personally I like to pretend the bus exploded and killed them all in '86.

GUITAR PEDALS FOR SALE
#19
Quote by ze monsta
please make it clear in the OP that V9 sounds horrible and nothing like the classic muffs.


No thanks
#20
Quote by ze monsta
please make it clear in the OP that V9 sounds horrible and nothing like the classic muffs.

Stupid purism. Every single muff sounds great, even the "worst" ones I've heard sounded awesome. I love my Russian reissue (last version), it sounds amazing.

╠═══════╬═══════╣

THE SINE WAVE SURFER σƒ τλε τρπ βπστλεπλσσδ

╠═══════╬═══════╣


[quote="'[BurnTheDusk"]']Boss pedals may be built like tanks but I would rather buy a cardboard box that is on my side than pay for a tank that is working against me.
#21
I run a Green Muff on my board, my second Green Muff is off being modded.
Call me Dom
Quote by Dmaj7
I don't know how to count canadians, the metric system is hard

Quote by gregs1020
well if lbj pokes his head in here and there's no nuts shit's gonna go doooooooowwwwwwwwwn.



{Pedalboard Thread Native: The Muffin Man}
#22
I would love to see a Ram's Head reissue, people would jump all over that.
#23
Figured I'd bump this with a question, so all this Muff Love doesn't go to waste.

So I love the sound of Little Big Muff, but it's a little lacking in versatility. It sounds just right when I play through it with Single Coils, but when I play with Humbuckers it sounds too bassy. Yeah, I know they're supposed to sound muffled and bassy, but it's too thick and the Tone knob doesn't have the best range. It goes from muddy bassy mids to shrill highs with my Humbuckers, even though it sounds more tweakable with my Singles.

tl:dr - My Little Big Muff doesn't sound as good with my Buckers as it does with Singles, what Muff pedal would work better across the board?
#24
I love my NYC Muff reissue, it's become my go-to pedal for gain. I hope to one day pick up an Earthbound Audio Suppercollider eventually though. Now that is one badass Muff
Board:
Pitchblack - Fulltone Octafuzz - Hardwire OD - Blakemore Effects Deus Ex Machina - MXR Micro Chorus - Diamond Memory Lane Jr - EHX SMMH - Neunaber Wet
#25
I heard they were doing a limited Ram's Head version of the Beast but didn't know they were doing anything else though, I'll have to check it out

Edit: They're retiring them?!
Board:
Pitchblack - Fulltone Octafuzz - Hardwire OD - Blakemore Effects Deus Ex Machina - MXR Micro Chorus - Diamond Memory Lane Jr - EHX SMMH - Neunaber Wet
Last edited by IsThereLoveInSp at Sep 14, 2010,
#26
I have a good ole, tried and true Big Muff Pi NYC. And as someone said before, when I first got it I thought it sounded horrible and like total crap. I've had it for almost a year and now that I've explored it and learned how to control the beast, I couldn't live without it. My favorite sound out of it is volume set at about 11 o'clock, tone at about 3 o'clock, and sustain at about noon. Using my Tele, I roll back the guitar volume knob about a quarter to let up on some of the bass and I get a nice Tonebender-esque sound out of it (through my '67 Bassman btw). Very similar to Page's live sound from around 1969. But with that said, even the slightest touch of the tone knob on the Muff can drastically change the sound and that's why I love this ****ing pedal.

EDIT: the Big Muff does indeed sound best with singlecoils since humbuckers seem to give it way too much bass. But I like to use my Muff with buckers for a solo boost; I really dig the fuzzy oscillation when you play up high on the neck
Last edited by foob85 at Sep 17, 2010,
#28
To be honest go get a SUF or Mod your Current Big Muffs cause all i see so far is people complaining about how not impressive a New NYC Muff is.

The Old Muff and its Clones are to die for
What is thall? THALL
Agile Interceptor Pro 727
POD HD500
Carvin DCM1000L
Behringer Rack Tuner
Carvin Rack Case
Mogami Cables
#29
Russian Big Muff...love it.
Guitars:
Martin DSR acoustic
Fender Telecaster
Epiphone Les Paul
Amp:
Fender Hot Rod Deluxe
Pedals:
535Q Crybaby>Fulltone OCD>Phase 90>EHX Big Muff>MXR Carbon Copy>EHX Holy Grail
You can call me Matt
#31
I've got a Double Muff and it's awesome, although totally different to a Big Muff. We need moar Muff Fuzz love.
#32
Quote by WtrPlyr
Here's mine



Civil War muff with a boost in front of it.




The musket, is, IMO at least, the best modern muff clone available. Fantastic pedal.
LesPaul
Pedals
OrangeRocker30
My band
PBT Native: Resident Graphics Monkey

#33
Quote by nightraven
http://www.mercatinomusicale.com/mm/a_Montarbo-SINPHOTON-FUZZ-VINTAGE-70_id1689580.html here's a very rare italian big muff copy from the early 70s if any of the euro folk want to jump on it. i'd go nuts if i weren't starting uni in a couple of days.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D3u8S-JlJYo&feature=player_embedded


I just looked at the schematic and guts and it's not a big Muff but it sounds really good:

Last edited by mattpas at Sep 18, 2010,
#34
Quote by nightraven
my bad, always thought that was a muff, sounds like it


It does have a huge amount of fuzz.
It has bass treble and volume so the gain amount is fixed.
I think I might make one and add a gain pot.
#36
I love my NYC Big Muff reissue, but find myself steering away from it more and more recently. It just gets lost in a live mix with another guitar, bass and drums. I find it really depends what you're playing it through. Trouble seems to come a knockin' everytime I have to use someone else's amp at a gig. Like last night. I might as well have just not played anything when I kicked it because it just could not be heard. This was through a line6 spider valve running "clean". Even with a twenty minute sound check and a lot of tweaking it just would not cut through at all. But in fairness this a huge amount to do with the amp.
Gear:

Is what some junkies refer to heroin as. For me it's just loads of wires and good sturdy housing, but just as addictive.
#37
Quote by Psychopathology
Is the second switch for tone bypass?


second switch is a feedback loop.
mojostompboxes.com
#38
I love my Big Muff Reissue. I just got it a couple of days ago, and it's given my sound a shot of adrenaline. It sounds really great through my bass amp; bringing out the thickness of the distortion.
I like St. Anger. Ridicule me, daddy

Quote by ErikLensherr

REEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
#39
Quote by nightraven
while you're around here, you know if this pedal is related to the big muff?
guts: http://files.effectsdatabase.com/gear/pics/jen_harmonbooster_005.jpg
clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lzsO2c92isc
i don't have a schematic unfortunately
it kinda has that muffy sound but more overdrivey... somehow
i tracked one down recently and it's gonna be shipped out soon


I can't see all the parts and am unable to find a schematic.
It looks muff-ish but sounds more like the Jordan Creator.

The Jen Jumbo Fuzz is a muff clone.
#40
Quote by zgr0826
I love my Big Muff Reissue. I just got it a couple of days ago, and it's given my sound a shot of adrenaline. It sounds really great through my bass amp; bringing out the thickness of the distortion.

It's true, running one through a bass amp does make it sound pretty wicked. I ran mine through a Gallien-Krueger bass amp last year, and just fell in love with the tone. Unfortunately, it was a rented amp.

Now I have always loved my NYC Big Muff, since the first time I plugged it in. But I find that sometimes the bass frequencies get lost behind the drums. So can anyone recommend a good setting that makes it cut through the mix really well? I'm playing through an SG and an old Valvestate.
Quote by Kensai
Hipster.


I have a name. It is Mitch.
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