Next step wanted: understanding beyond color by number

Ok, you got your soldering iron and nothing is going to hold you back, but you have no clue where to start or what to build. There were others before you with the same questions... read them first.
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carabinerX
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Post by carabinerX »

Hi All,
This is my first post. My name is Jason and I am just joining in the greatness of pedal building. Thanks to Paul from DIY Guitar Pedals(.au), im building my first Fuzz pedal with some rad upgrades of (russian) Ge transistors and diodes, and so on.

Though all of it is pretty straight forward, (looking forward to her first words), and I do understand the basic functions of a capacitor, or a resistor, or even a diode (though limited), I do NOT understand the compounding effects these components have in relation to producing audio. I have seen on this forum people talking about using lower value capacitors at the input to increase the bass, or (if i read correctly) using a low value capacitor in series with the diode will give a darker, full sound to your effect.

Since I cant find the sound I want in pedals sub $200 I wanted to start building my own, but where can I find more information like the aforementioned about what values to use and their effects or knowing how many/what value of resistor is needed and to what purpose....I know its asking a lot and probably just involves needing to learn circuitry in general but I really want to start experimenting to find the tones im imagining; I just dont know basics of what these parts do in series or where to find that info.

I apologize if this is a tediously ignorant question or isfrequently asked, but I havent stumble upon the page as of yet....
Thanks guys, pleased to be joining the club!

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Nocentelli
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Post by Nocentelli »

carabinerX wrote:Hi All,
This is my first post. My name is Jason and I

I apologize if this is a tediously ignorant question or isfrequently asked, but I havent stumble upon the page as of yet....
Thanks guys, pleased to be joining the club
WELCOME! You haven't found the page yet, i'm not sure one yet exists that explains simply what every component does for any pedal, but there are a few nice walkthroughs for specific pedal cicuits: Beavis's LPB1 and kitrae's big muff spring to mind. If you are happy with the level of tech within those, rg keen's technology of the fuzzface is a bit of a step up but well worth the read. If you can't find the links to those, i'll dig them out when i'm not on my phone or someone else might step in.
brownwhopping wrote:How can I learn by reading threads an making circuits, when some day I can see a lawsuit or somebody beat me in the face for that?

carabinerX
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Post by carabinerX »

there are a few nice walkthroughs for specific pedal cicuits: Beavis's LPB1 and kitrae's big muff spring to mind. If you are happy with the level of tech within those, rg keen's technology of the fuzzface is a bit of a step up but well worth the read.
Thank you Nocentelli this is exactly what i had in mind, if you know of more id love to read them, the more the merrier! Thanks again

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Nocentelli
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Post by Nocentelli »

carabinerX wrote:Thank you Nocentelli this is exactly what i had in mind, if you know of more id love to read them, the more the merrier! Thanks again
I suggest you search forums like this one and https://www.diystompboxes.com for information on a particular pedal, and read absolutely everything you can about it. Choose a simple circuit to start with, something you might get some use out of.

For really simple, try a booster like the LPB-1 as mentioned before, or the zvex SHO, MXR microamp etc are all good starting points. For a really simple fuzz to get you started, the bazz fuss was the "toe in the water" for many brand new to diy, but the colorsound one knob fuzz is also great, or maybe a silicon fuzzface, silicon mkII tonebender, skreddy lunar module, big muff pi etc. . If you want a simple overdrive, the Electra distortion is OK, or look out for Paul Cochrane's Timmy. All these pedals have heaps of information about them from people in the DIY sphere, both experts dissecting the circuit in enormous technical detail, and newbies asking simple questions about how to put them together, or mod them to alter the sound. Working towards building a particular pedal will focus your understanding on a specific circuit you can try out for real on a breadboard, as you get real-time feedback on what each component does as you swap values and tweak.

Once you've picked a circuit to try out, you'll start realising what search terms to use and will find yourself following links right back to here or DIYSB, e.g. "input cap values fuzzface", which will lead to more reading and more understanding.

Other websites including huge amounts of diy info include:

http://www.geofex.com
http://www.madbeanpedals.com
http://byocelectronics.com/board/
http://www.ilovefuzz.com - diy section
http://tagboardeffects.blogspot.co.uk/ - tons of vero layouts, but also newby friendly general advice
http://www.beavisaudio.com/ - sadly gone into stasis, but heaps of basic pedal info
brownwhopping wrote:How can I learn by reading threads an making circuits, when some day I can see a lawsuit or somebody beat me in the face for that?

jelliot
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Post by jelliot »

Hi,
I found this site recently http://www.electrosmash.com/ and that guy does really nice analysis on a few pedals: Big Muff, Rat, ce-2, phase 90 etc.
I am a beginner too and I found them really helpful in understanding whats going on.

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