#1
I've been wanting to get into using effects on my bass recently and I started looking to see what fuzz players I like used, and it seems like everyone and their mother uses the EH Bass Microsynth. I, however, don't want to pay almost $300 for a pedal. I did find used ones for about $170 but thats still way over what I want to spend.

I watched a demo on youtube and I don't need the sweep/envelope filter section. I just want it for the distortion. Anyone know of any fuzz or distortion pedals (under $100) that are good?

I really like Jack Lawrence from the Dead Weather's distortion/fuzz. I know he uses one as well as a Fulltone overdrive.

Thanks for any help. Sorry if this has been asked before, I searched but didn't see anything on it.
#2
Why would you look at a synth pedal for dirt? Look at actual fuzz pedals.

Russian Bigmuff, Bass Big Muff, Bluebeard, the MUSKET is supposed to be really good as it has a mid knob and not just a mid cut.

I think all of those are under or close to $100 especially used. In addition most fuzz pedals are like $25 in parts, 90% of which is the case and switch. You could build in number of famous fuzz pedals for under $40.

I have also used the dano Fabtone, a older 90's dano release, unreasonable amounts of gain that I never turned past 0 and it's still insane and only like $20-$40
#3
I was originally looking for just a cheap fuzz but then I started reading about the Bass Micro Synth and it seems everyone uses it. And the Youtube demo had some cool sounds. Just wondering if there was a pedal that had the voicing controls like the microsynth without the sweeping.
#4
The musket has a lot of controls, as does the swollen pickle (used under $100) etc. I'm not sure without listening (forgot my headphones) but is a micro synth just a fuzz and a envelope filter combined?

The most famous fuzz is of course the muff, a big squashed mid fuzz tone. They generally are just a volume, sustain (fuzz) and tone. The bass muff has a little more to it, and pedals like the musket and swollen pickle have each like 5-6 knobs for tweaking such as volume, mid, treble, bass, fuzz, etc. It's really a matter of preference and budget.

a simple fuzz face or muff work for some people others need the tweaks, are you a set and forget or tweak tweak and repeat kind of guy. I find the muff tone from my Russian muff when pushed came out rather synthy on it's own, and when I bought an original Qtron a few months ago it suggested putting the two together for a synth style, which returns to my question is the micro synth just a fuzz and a evelope filter/autowah in one box?

Overall I hope I am helping you because I am a little confused as to what you really want. Best suggestion is go to a music shop like guitar center, they always have a NYC style muff, a bass muff and a swollen pickle to try. The Mustket is online only so you might need some good headphones or speakers and try youtube videos. Fender also has a Sub Lime Bass pedal I've read is pretty good.
#5
You might not think you want an envelope filter, but one driving or following a fuzz can make a sharper, seemingly more square-wavey sound than a fuzz alone without just sounding like an Autowah. I say that because I'm pretty sure the filter is making up a good chunk of the timbre in the Dead Weather clip you posted.

You might start with just a muff that works well with bass, like the ones suggested above (I use the GGG muff, which is allegedly the same as the bluebeard and it works great) and if, it's not cutting it, then add a cheap filter pedal or even get a wah and leave it set in one position that brings the fuzz to super-growly life.

The cool part about going modular like that is you can add even more synth features later if you feel like going down that road, or leave it as it is if you're satisfied-- a separate filter, octave, fuzz, and gate will give you a wider variety of great synth sounds than anything out there IMO.
#6
Quote by dullsilver_mike

The cool part about going modular like that is you can add even more synth features later if you feel like going down that road, or leave it as it is if you're satisfied-- a separate filter, octave, fuzz, and gate will give you a wider variety of great synth sounds than anything out there IMO.



Yea I have a Boss OC-3 ($30), Russian Muff ($40, in need of repair), and a Big Box Qtron ($50). Not bad for $120, but if the sound you like is that Micro Synth, staart saving and selling and trading gear and get it.

I'm not into synthy stuff so much as the doom aspect, but I have played with it, and you can get a ton of weird tones and noises that work. The OC-3 has a distortion in it as well so that is fun.
#7
Quote by askrere
Yea I have a Boss OC-3 ($30), Russian Muff ($40, in need of repair), and a Big Box Qtron ($50). Not bad for $120, but if the sound you like is that Micro Synth, staart saving and selling and trading gear and get it.

I'm not into synthy stuff so much as the doom aspect, but I have played with it, and you can get a ton of weird tones and noises that work. The OC-3 has a distortion in it as well so that is fun.



There's a cool mod out there that pretty much just turns the -1 octave on the OC-2 into a square wave synth. I don't want to change my OC-2 to do it, but you're right that the OC series have their own cool style of synthy distortion coming through. I do the same thing as you with a DOD440 clone as the filter (and that has its own mild break up too). I add an LS-2 to the whole thing to blend some clean bass back into the signal, and can get these great sounds span rock and dance music without sounding cheesy.
Last edited by dullsilver_mike at Dec 7, 2011,
#8
I believe the MicroSynth is just fuzz, octave and envelope filter. I've been googling like crazy and found this. It sounds great on guitar and the description says guitar or bass, but I can't find any bass demos.

And yea I like to tweak with tone, but once I find one or two settings I like on amps and such I stick with those.

I'm not trying to get that synthy sound (or I don't think I am) just the crunchy yet bassy tone Jack Lawrence gets. His clean and distorted tone are what I'm obsessed with at the moment.