Little Big Muff Review

manufacturer: Electro-Harmonix date: 03/04/2014 category: Guitar Effects
Electro-Harmonix: Little Big Muff
Housed in a compact, die-cast box with smooth corners, The Little Big Muff presents the classic, true-to-heritage, 1970 tone that falls somewhere between the current U.S. Big Muff and the Russian Big Muff. Its long, silky smooth sustain proves that celebrated sound can indeed come in small packages.
 Sound: 8.9
 Overall Impression: 8.7
 Reliability & Durability: 9.7
 Ease of Use: 8.9
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (9) pictures (3) 34 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 8.8
Little Big Muff Reviewed by: timi_hendrix, on august 18, 2007
4 of 4 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 109.8

Purchased from: GAK

Ease of Use: This thing's pretty simple, three knobs, Sustain (equivalent to gain, essentially), Tone, and Volume. It takes a fair bit of tweaking to get the tone you want, but all the sounds you get out of this are usable. The pedal gets an 8 for this because a small change in the tone knob's position in particular can make a big change to the sound. // 8

Sound: I use an Ibanez SZ520QM with a swineshead venom bridge pickup into a Laney VC50 or Epiphone Valve Jr amp, with some other effects. You can get some very diverse sounds from this, it's deceptively versatile considering it only has two knobs to alter the tone. It goes from lo-fi, subtle fuzz with the dials low, to completely mental fuzz with the dials set high (though I find the latter tone pretty much unusable). I've used this as a booster for my Valve Jr before and it added a nice fuzzy edge to the amp's Overdrive. I personally run this through the clean channel of my Laney with the sustain dial set to 3 o'clock and the tone dial set to 2 o'clock for an aggressive, spitting fuzz sound. It sounds really fat and huge when playing rhythm, and I can get a great wailing lead sound (especially when I use my wah with it). This unit is supposedly voiced somewhere between the American and Russian units, I wouldn't know as I've never tried the other two. // 9

Reliability & Durability: This pedal is just a metal box with a circuit inside. It could survive being thrown out of the window. The switch isn't as durable as those found on some of my other pedals, but it's a very reliable pedal and has never cut out or broken on me. The addition of a standard 9 volt adaptor jack gives it a big advantage over the Russian and American versions, as does the smaller size. // 10

Overall Impression: I think this is a brilliant piece of equipment, however if you don't like fuzz then you won't like this, there's no getting around that. I play hard rock music with my band, and anything from jazz funk to thrash outside of that. This pedal won't do everything, in fact it's kind of a niche pedal, as fuzz doesn't really suit most genres. I use it for a couple of my band's songs and it sounds fantastic, a nice contrast to a conventional distorted or overdriven sound. If it were stolen or lost I'd definitely buy another one, just because I love it so much. I think the pedal's fine as it is - it's a fuzzbox, does what it says on the tin. There are other fuzzes worth looking into - Notably the Zvex Fuzz Factory - but for the price this is a hard fuzz to beat. I'm giving this an 8 just because of it's fairly limited usage for some people. But it what it does do, it does brilliantly. // 8

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overall: 8.5
Little Big Muff Reviewed by: nitroguitarist, on july 04, 2011
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Purchased from: ebay

Ease of Use: The LBM is the same thing as the Big muff just smaller and a more practical for a pedalboard. It has three knobs level, tone, and sustain. Level adjusts the output of the pedal, tone adjusts the tone of the pedal from muddier, bassy tone to a trebley, brighter tone. Sustain adjusts the amount of sustain (or gain) you want from the pedal. Pretty simple to use and is also true bypass. // 9

Sound: I use a 2002 Fender Highway one stratocaster and an Ibanez RG with DiMarzio pickups through a Vox night train. The sound is a great thick fuzz tone with lots of sustain. I like to combine it with my amp's Overdrive for a lead tone or with my Boss SD-1 to smoothe out the drive, get more sustain, and add some treble. With that being said it tends to get muddy on the neck pickup with the tone knob on the pedal rolled back a bit (which is why I use my Overdrive with it at times). This pedal is noisy even when the sustain knob isn't that high also so when paired with an Overdrive and some times my dyna comp... It gets even noisier. Also since it is a fuzz pedal there is a tendency to get lost in the mix but that's why there's a level knob on the pedal. Great pedal, Great tone, Really noisey and sometimes muddy. // 7

Reliability & Durability: I can depend on this pedal. I really doubt it's going to break on me just randomly or from my foot. Unless I take a hammer to it or something. I've gigged without a backup before but the rhythm guitarist has a Big Muff he doesn't use so I got that if anything happens to it. // 10

Overall Impression: I play rock and blues rock and have been playing for 4 years and it matches what I play. My amp gets trebley with the its distortion at high volumes so it's my main distortion. It can do 90's rock like RHCP and Smashing Pumpkins as well as Pink Floyd and Silversun Pickups. I wish someone would have told me about getting lost in a band situation but now I crank the level knob so it's all good. I love the tone the thick tone I can get from it. I hate the noise that comes along with it but its a small price to pay for that tone. I chose this pedal cause I heard it was an awesome pedal and they were not lying. // 8

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overall: 9.8
Little Big Muff Reviewed by: demoniacfashion, on april 07, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Ease of Use: The Little Big Muff is great! Although the knobs are a little misleading, they're easy to figure out. The volume knob is selfexplanatory. The tone knob selects the bassness or trebleness of your input, and teh sustain knob should really be called drive, gain, or dist. It is so easy to get whatever type of fuzz you want from this thing. // 9

Sound: I use the Little Big Muff with a Fender Champion 110 75W amp and a Epiphone G-310 / Fender Strat / Ibanez JS1000. I like this pedal because it's virtually noiseless, which is a big upside from the distortion I get from the amp. I think this is a given, but do not use the Little Big Muff while on the Overdrive channel unless you want to get some really shit sounding distortion. You can get anything from clear crunchy to muddy and messy tones from this thing. With the sustain knob turned to max, the distortion is soooo sweet and crunchy. I love to play early Metallica songs on it, like Seek and Destroy. // 10

Reliability & Durability: The Little Big Muff has a very solid yet light construction, and it can withstand almost anything. The only weak points are the plastic knobs, ESP. the tops, but they are only weak compared to the rest of the body. You need a sharp knife to even start doing some damage. // 10

Overall Impression: I like to play metal, and this pedal can provide some sick, but not over the top, crunchy distortion; blues, which can be achieved with the sustain knob at about 3:00 and the tone knob at 1:00; classical: the reverb on my amp combined with the true bypass on the LBM are a great team; also, you can get some real nice Pink Floyd-esque smooth distortions from this, and some great southern rock tones. I have been playing about 2 1/2 years. I previously owned a Behringer FX1000 pedal, but the LBM is a huge step up from there. This little pedal simply rocks! // 10

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overall: 10
Little Big Muff Reviewed by: clashcityrawkr5, on june 10, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Ease of Use: The electro harmonix xo line of small compact di-cast pedals are some of the most simple pedals to use. With a sustain(distortion) tone and volume pedal it is extremly easy to work and you can get so many different sounds out of it. It can't get any simpler for a distortion pedal to have 3 knobs. Extremely easy to dial in the right kind of sound you want. // 10

Sound: I run this pedal inbetween my LTD EC-1000 VHB with seymour duncans and my Vox AD30VT. This pedal is one of my favorites it is always on my board. It has a slightly different sound from the USA and Russian big muffs, kind of like a mix between the two. The distrtion can go from a crunchy AC/DC Overdrive to full out Hendrix fuzz. Good for White Stripes and Silversun Pickups stuff. Can sound just like Jack when used with my Micro POG. The effects never sound small or fake. I always keep the volume all the way up. I can use it with an already distorted signal to get a little boost with the sustain at 0.Great Vintage sounds and sounds good with a wah for a nasty sound. It is a fuzz pedal not just regular distorition so it's not good for everything. // 10

Reliability & Durability: This thing is built like a tank I don't think it could ever break. I wouldn't gig with a backup but I would take a battery just in case. I don't expect it to ever break, but if it did Electro Harmonix has great customer support. I have played so many shows with this pedal and I constantly stomp on the Switch. The only thing I have ever had to do is replace batteries and tighten a nut around the switch. // 10

Overall Impression: This effect is one of the ones that I get the most practical use out of. I use it for different classic rock sounds and it sounds awesome on a bass too. I would deffinantly buy another one if it was lost or stolen. Electro harmonix makes some of the best pedals out there today. This pedal has everyhthing you could need to control it, It is simple and easy and you can get tons of great sounds out of it. // 10

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overall: 9
Little Big Muff Reviewed by: Mitchell?, on january 27, 2009
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 70

Purchased from: Musicians Friend

Ease of Use: This pedal is pretty basic, with three knobs: Volume, Tone, and Sustain (gain/drive/fuzz). Big Muff's are finicky pedals, and you have to have a tone in mind when you sit down with it, or chances are you'll come out a funky tone you weren't aiming for. The tone knob is very important to what fuzz or dist. tone you get. The main to keep in mind with any Big Muff is that it's a bassy, kind've muddy, raunchy fuzz/dist. You'll need get a refined, bright OD, or normal dist. tone out of it. The Big Muff only makes Big Muff tones. For this pedal, I only mess with one knob most of the time, the tone knob. I keep the Sustain knob maxed, or nearly there, but I mess with the tone knob to shape the tone of the fuzz I want. Turn it back for a mega thick bassy fuzz, or turn it up for a sharp, biting fuzz. // 8

Sound: This pedal is meant for one tone, which is your classic Big Muff fuzz/dist. I use it with a PRS SE Custom Semi-Hollow (mahogany body, two humbuckers) in front of a Vox AC15. Turn the tone down for a bassy, thumpin' fuzz, or crank it up for a harsher, spitting fuzz/dist. tone. Great rhythm fuzz tone with the tone at somewhere around noon and the Sustain knob at about 3 'o clock. You'll get a very sweet lead fuzz tone with the Sustain knob cranked and the tone a bit past noon. This pedal does have a bit of noise, but it doesn't affect the sound, and it's not even noticeable unless you're looking for it. I got this pedal for a balls-to-the-wall fuzz/dirt tone that works for all sorts of things. The Big Muff just screams attitude, and for that reason it works in any situation that calls for rock n' roll, from classic rock, to hardcore. The Big Muff has a classic tone that will add to your arsenal, and it will add to any harder genre of music. I use this with a Fender MIM J bass for a sweet bass fuzz tone too. It works great for bass, but you have to turn back the tone knob to get more low-end. It's super sweet for bass, and in my opinion it works just as well as a bass fuzz as it does as a guitar fuzz. // 9

Reliability & Durability: The Little Big Muff is in a die-cast enclosure, and it's tough as nails. I've beaten the crap out of mine, and it's still running just as well the day I got it. I've actually spilled a whole can of Orange Fanta on it (yum) and it survived, miraculously. I would gig with this pedal without a backup for sure. // 10

Overall Impression: Overall, I'm impressed with this pedal. It's just got this tone that screams at you. It's full of attitude, so it'll do it in any harder genre of music. I use the Little Big Muff for classic rock, to hard rock, to Indie, to hardcore. It fits in really well in just about any form of rock. My first Little Big Muff was stolen, so I've actually already replaced it. I'm on my second one, and glad that I bought it. I compared this to the fullsize Big Muff Pi, but really, they sound the same. Honestly. I needed the smaller enclosure of the Little Big Muff, which is why I bought the Little Big Muff, but I would buy the Big Muff Pi just for the added voodoo of the huge enclosure and the mega-sized knobs. // 9

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overall: 9
Little Big Muff Reviewed by: blessthefall15, on november 10, 2009
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 79

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Ease of Use: It is really easy to use. Only 3 knobs, volume, tone, sustain. Volume obviously controls the output level of the sound. Tone is essentially a treble boost/reduce and you can get a huge range of sounds with this one little knob. Then the sustain knob controls drive/sustain. // 9

Sound: It sounds great. I chose this because I can get everything from a bassy deftoneish distortion, to pop punk sounds, to a more gritty metal tone some what like a7x. It has a huge range of what sounds you can get. With it turned on it isn't very noisy at all when I'm not playing, but it is distortion so like most pedals there will be a slight fuzz in the background but nothing to worry about. // 9

Reliability & Durability: It is built like a tank! This pedal is made out of some sturdy metal and it doesn't look or feel like it could break.. It is very dependable, I've had it a while and nothing has gone wrong with it even after a couple shows. I would use it without a back up. The pedal it's self doesn't seem like it will ever break just make sure to have extra batteries or an ac adaptor. // 10

Overall Impression: This pedal is awesome, there is better out there but for what I wanted (a relatively cheap distortion pedal that can get a wide range of tones.) it is hard to beat. It's a beast and seems like it could never break. Even the knobs are high quality and they're put on real tight so you don't have to worry about those getting messed up. Overall I liked it but it depends on what you want.. This pedal is better for more than one genre if you want something that can vary tone wise and keep it's distortion. How ever if you only play metal, or only classic rock or blues or some other genre I would look for something more specific to your playing. // 8

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overall: 9.8
Little Big Muff Reviewed by: Section 5, on february 15, 2010
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: £ 39

Purchased from: Local music store

Ease of Use: This pedal is the Electro-Harmonix Little Big Muff. It's basically the same pedal as the original Big Muff, but in a small light case, along with true bypass and a 9V power input. There's just three knobs on this pedal, and they are Volume, Tone and Sustain. Believe me when I say this, it's a really easy pedal to just plug in and use, but there's some pretty deep sonic options available. The manual is pretty basic, but really all you need to do is link this pedal up and start rocking! As this is a very easy to use pedal, it gets a 10 in this category. // 10

Sound: Currently I'm using an Ibanez ICT700 through this pedal into a Fender Hot Rod Deluxe. This pedal really is mind-blowing in its sonic options. Turn the Sustain knob back and the Tone Knob full up and you've got a crunchy yet held-back Overdrive sound. Put both at twelve o'clock and there's your neat and regular fuzz tones: thick and creamy and biting, all at the same time. Then turn both knobs full up to experience wild and crazy distorted tones, perfect for White Stripes rhythm or Wolfmother rock. There are a hell of a lot of sounds in this pedal, and you really need to experiment with all three knobs and your guitar's volume pot to unlock the potential of this beast. No question about it, this gets a 10 from me. // 10

Reliability & Durability: Here's where I'm not sure: the build quality is excellent, without a doubt. A rugged die-cast metal chassis and a sturdy footswitch tell me that this is a pedal that's meant for action every night, and it won't let me down. However, the pedal does seem a little too light to me. Great for transporting to gigs and stuff, but I actually like a bit of meat on my pedals. Thinking about it, that's sort of the point of the Little Big Muff: Big Muff sounds without the impracticality. Still, it gets a 9 in this category. // 9

Overall Impression: Overall, the Little Big Muff is the ultimate distortion pedal, being versatile and straightforward at the same time. I also have a DigiTech Hardwire TL-2 for my searing metal tones, but the LBM is perfect for any style of music, which is handy seeing as I play a large variety of music, from jazz to garage-rock. I've been playing for three-and-a-bit years now, and this pedal is a revelation: its tonal wackiness is a great inspiration to my composing. If it were stolen or lost, I would be very annoyed, and do my very best to get it back. I was going to get the Zvex Fuzz Factory or the EHX Graphic Fuzz, but I saw the LBM in my local music store's sale, so I got it. I wish it had a graphic EQ or something for even more tweaking, but then that's what the Graphic Fuzz pedal is for, right? Anyway, the Little Big Muff is a truly great pedal. I urge anyone who's even remotely interested in overdriven or distorted tones to check this thing out. For the price, it's wonderful. // 10

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overall: 7.5
Little Big Muff Reviewed by: ShaneCallaghan, on january 25, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: £ 39

Purchased from: Merchant City Music

Ease of Use: How easy is it to get a good sound out of this, easy as Pi, oooh, see what I did there(and it's probably been done before). There's no patches on this, the manual is bog standard, straightforward and comes with loads of stuff. Manuals, warranty cards, info on other EHX pedals and, I think this was the music shops effort, a few suggested setting. // 8

Sound: I used this pedal when I was playing lots of Rock and Heavy Rock music, I used solid body guitars with active pickups into a valve amp with many other pedals. Sounded excellent. It's not noisy, added a little extra oomph to the overdriven channels on my amp but nothing a noise suppressor couldn't handle. It's a very distinct effect, sounds a lot like Peter Frampton, Jimmy Page and Jack White. I hear there is a certain setting that if used, can create a sub-octave sound which beefs your guitar sound to no end. The sustain basically adds more effect and muffs the crap into it, giving a very cool smooth sound. // 7

Reliability & Durability: Made of a die cast shell, solid as a rock, a good lookin rock and about as heavy. I used this several times without back up, it withstood my big boots slamming on it, the knobs didn't even budge and when I accidentally tripped on it once. I write below of how this thing's still running. // 9

Overall Impression: At the time I was playing lots of rock as stated above, it fitted this sound like a glove and I was often commended on my sound and was asked about my Drive sound. This thing was great, I say was and used the past tense a lot here as I sold it. This pedal was great and had an excellent sound, it just didn't fit my sound after I started playing heavier music. I was offered a good price on it and so, I sold it. The guy I sold it to still uses it 3 years on and it's still running and sounding good. Enjoy this pedal and for comic value, check this review. // 6

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overall: 9
Little Big Muff Reviewed by: FXPenulla, on march 04, 2014
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Purchased from: JB Music

Ease of Use: Its easy, you do not actually need a manual for this. There are 3 knobs on it, how simpler can it get? The VOLUME knob adjusts the level of the effect. The TONE knob allows you to fine tune, whether you like it thick sounding or have sort of a scooped mid sound. The SUSTAIN knob adjusts how much gain you want. I won't be recommending this to metal heads, but for guitarists that aren't boxed in a specific genre like myself, looking for a versatile dirt pedal, this should be on that board. This one's my go-to-pedal! // 9

Sound: This is the pedal in a smaller package, that has that classic HUGE tone! I play all sorts of music but this has been my go to pedal for the "lighter" tone that needs little to moderate dirt. The pedal suits my rhythm playing for an alternative/classic rock/blues-rock tone when I am on the bridge pick up. The thick creamy tone sounds incredible on the neck pick up of my guitars (Epiphone G-310/Epiphone G-400 Pro)when I do my guitar solos. With the pedal cranked up of course there will be humming all over the place(nothing a good old noise gate can't do). This pedal is the 4th out of the chain of 11 pedals I have on my rig. It is perfect for classic '70s rock riffs that we all have grown to love (AC/DC, Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, Hendrix etc.) I also this when my band plays '90s covers (Third Eye Blind, Matchbox 20, Offspring, Live, Silverchair, Gin Blossoms, Creed and all that stuff) and it does the job well. Its been on my rig for a little over two years and I don't see myself replacing it til it suddenly retires on its own. // 9

Reliability & Durability: Its been on my rig for at least two years and its been used/abused in all of my gigs, as well as a daily use of at least an hour at home. I have another dirt pedal on my rig which is a Digitech Death Metal which can be considered a 'back up', but there are songs in our playlist that sounds perfect with the Muff. It is made of sturdy metal and I don't see it breaking even if I put my whole weight to it (I'm Asian so I am no big dude). The pedal is slowly losing its finish but that happens to every guitar effects pedal on the planet, most especially with regular use. // 9

Overall Impression: My band's focus is mainly writing original material, but my influences as a guitarist cover almost all sub genres of rock because I don't want to be tagged "one dimensional." I do a little bit of everything (from bluesy licks of SRV, Hendrix, and Mayer, classic rock riffing from the '70s, some Dimebag and Hammett licks thanks to Andy James! Funk rock riffing of Morello and Frusciante. Some psychedelic effects from Einziger and Lopez, jamming to '90s anthems, and even some pop tunes of Mars and Mraz from time to time). I'll probably sell my Digitech Death Metal if this gets stolen and score a EHX Metal Muff. This pedal is fit for Low to Mid gain stuff, coupled with an EQ pedal it could probably handle metal, but as a stand alone dirt, it is perfect for Alt-Classic Rock-Punk-Hard Rock. The classic look and simplistic approach add to its overall appeal. // 9

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