Famulus review by Red Witch

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  • Ease of Use: 4
  • Sound: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 1
  • Overall Impression: 1
  • Reviewer's score: 3.8 Poor
  • Users' score: 7 (2 votes)
Red Witch: Famulus

Purchased from: Black Creek Guitars

Ease of Use — 4
It's easy to dial in tones. The changes to the sound as you tweak each and every parameter is smooth yet noticeable, allowing for easy adjustments with results. No manual necessary, all of the knobs are clearly labeled and easy to understand. Volume, Tone, Gain A level, Gain B level and the blend knob (allowing only Gain A, only Gain B, and everything in between, literally). However, I just can't bring myself to give it a good score here since mine is always on the fritz. If you get your hands on a reliable unit, count your lucky stars as you have a great pedal. If you aren't sure about buying this, from my personal experience I have to suggest to look elsewhere due to the quality issues.

Sound — 9
The sound of this unit is incredible. While it was working, I was able to dial in any sort of grit I would ever need and then some... It cleaned up nicely to that perfect threshold where the pick attack could bring in the extra punch needed to accent lead notes... Lo-fi drones, heavy grit, BJM-esque fuzz sounds with the treble accented. This thing was capable of it all. It was fairly quiet except when turned on, it had that dreaded pop, but I initially looked past this due to the versatility of the pedal. I was ecstatic during the first few sessions at the possibilities that were now at my fingertips. This would all soon change though.

Reliability & Durability — 1
This is where it fell to pieces. After very light use (four 4 hour sessions) Gain B completely died on me.. No sound whatsoever. I sent it back to New Zealand for free repair (only had to pay shipping), and received it back in good working order roughly 1-2 months later. Then, two days later, Gain B died AGAIN... I needed a distortion pedal for a show, so I figured I would make use of Gain A and then send the pedal back afterwards. Bad choice, as Gain A completely died in the middle of the show. So now, I have a useless boutique paperweight with no peace of mind that it will be fixed when I send it back. Poor quality.

Overall Impression — 1
I will never use another red witch pedal again after this nightmare, my Pentavocal Tremolo (a b-day gift from my gf) is experiencing the same issues so I'm lead to believe that the quality is just piss poor. If this were stolen, I would laugh that they chose to take this pedal.. Although the sound was great, its not reliable, not even for home use in temperature/humidity controlled environment. For Gain B to crap out twice without ever leaving the home is ludicrous and very disappointing. The customer service is great, good people are behind Red Witch, but the product just isn't there in my opinion. To pay that much for a pedal(s) that is this fickle just isn't an option.

1 comment sorted by best / new / date

    Hi Loveitbeit 212, This is Ben here from Red Witch. I'm sorry to hear about your experience with your Famulus. If you contact me directly at ben@redwitchanalogpedals.com I'll ensure that we resolve this situation to successful conclusion. We've sold thousands and thousands of Famulus pedals over the 6 years they've been available - and I'm delighted to say your experience is quite unique. Please allow us the opportunity to put things right for you. Warmest regards, Ben Fulton (Founder, Red Witch Pedals)