A friend asked me for a bass effect with boost, distortion and fuzz. He plays punk/deathcore stuff (not my taste).
For boost I am thinking a simple lpb-1 since it's just to push the other effects, and takes as little space as possible (fits-on-its-own-pot).
For distortion I'm gonna go with the Blowerbox since it seems to be the distortion for the case.
What about the fuzz though. I am thinking big muff-wise but don't know what version to choose. Any opinions/pointers?
I tried building the catalinbread boost first, but I found it kind of gritty. This may have happened because I tried to boost a bass on a little guitar amp , or maybe something went wrong with my build. I ll give it another go, maybe with alternate transistor.
Green and russian sounds good! I ll give that a go as well.
About low end dissapearing, all I can do is socket input/output capacitors I guess.
Yes, it's really important in my opinion. As I said, I've seen a a ridiculous amount of bassists stomp on a dirt pedal when they get to the "heavy bit" of a song, and all the arse end of their signal just vanishes. At this point they get lost behind the guitars.
They would have been better to carry on playing clean, but I don't think they ever notice the loss of low end, as they are in front of their amp, and not out in the audience.
The Boss bass overdrive is notorious for this - and that's what most of them use.
The Catalinbread should be clean - I suspect that you built it right, and the grit is coming from overloading your practice amp. Try it in front of a big bass rig and it should be fine.
For the bass fuzz I'd probably go for something real gnarly, like a Shin Ei FY-2 with a Super Hard On or LPB at the output to make up for the low volume. I've made those in the past and the punk/noisier dudes really like them.
If you're set on a Muff, for bass I like the Green Russian (like everybody does) and the Skreddy Supa Tone or Colorsound Supa Tonebender
I may find room to also fit a "order switch" toggle.
the current order is Boost-dist-fuzz.
what option you think is more usefull, switching the boost from first to last, or switching distortion and fuzz?
Whatever you decide, I feel a clean blend is pretty much essential on any bass dirt pedal. Keeping even just a little clean in the signal preserves the tone so the bass doesn't do the whole disappearing act.
If I was building a multi-effect now I'd be very tempted to make the input, output, 9V, ground and pot connections using multi-pole male and female push on connectors. They're cheap as chips and 15 pin should do the job nicely for up to 4 pot effects. Then if you want to try something else you can swap the board over in 5 seconds and you're away with a new effect. You could even make yourself a small "library" of effect boards with the connector already soldered up so you could swap and change whenever the mood takes you.
It gets a little more complicated when pot values change but you could easily plan a fairly large group of effects that all use the same value pots and give you plenty of extra versatility and longevity from your multi. How many Big Muff boards could you make for instance without ever having to go through the pain of boxing them all
I know de-soldering and re-soldering isn't exactly difficult, but if I got fed up of one effect in a multi I'm more likely to put it in a cupboard and use something different rather than pull it apart. Using connectors means I'd have it in my effect chain much longer.
The original plan was only boost and distortion. That was easy in a BB enclosure, but along came the fuzz. So now things are a little tight...
I thought about trying to stuff a blend in there but I feel it's just too much for my skills. I thought I could later do it a a stand-alone so it can be used with anything, we'll see.
As a bassist I've been through about a dozen fuzz units and can report that the 'best' (nice and filthy with no loss of low end and enough mids to not disappear in the mix) is the Coloursound Bass Fuzz that I got from this very site.
The output is a little less than unity, so I had to put an EHX line booster at the output, but it's brilliant.
I also had good results with the Idiotbox Blower (already mentioned)
I completely agree with Paul 5 in regards to the Colorsound. I've built dozens of muff variants for gigging bassists, but they all come back to the same thing. My bassist uses the Coloursound exclusively and sold his Bass Big Muff Pi. Just a fantastic all-around bass fuzz that holds down the lows. I've built about 10 now and they are all very consistent and stable, unlike most Muffs I've built which all turn out a little different. Highly recommended.
If you want a really fun circuit that sounds massive and gnarly, there is none so nasty as the Woolly Mammoth. I recommend Mark's 2-knob version on the site, as you don't need to adjust the fuzz and the EQ can either be controlled with a trimmer, or Mark's recommendation of 5k/5k (12'o clock on the dial). This fuzz is really fun and easy to build, and can even do the synthy sounds well. I spend a lot of time building bass fuzzes, FWIW:)