Fuzz defined the early years of Pink Floyd and David Gilmour’s tones. As it did for pretty much all guitarists in the early days. They came in all shapes and sizes and with different types of transistors, creating a wide palette of tones. A brand new pedal in the huge fuzz family is the Silicon Phuzz from UK based Phil Robinson. Here’s my review.
I must admit I have a rather ambivalent relationship with fuzz pedals. They can be moody, especially the germanium transistor models, and they require a certain amp to sound right. At least to my ears. I also feel that it’s one of those effects that although timeless, they certainly don’t fit everything.
But there’s something about fuzz. That raw and untamed sound. All the little nuances and harmonics. Every time I plug into one I recognise that unique character and the beauty of this simple design.
Apparently, Phil Robinson set out to design a fuzz pedal that would tackle some of the issues of using vintage style fuzz with modern, complex pedal boards, while still being able to capture all the lure and magic of those classic units.
The Silicon Phuzz is housed in an MXR sized box featuring a pair of BC108 transistors, with the familiar controls for volume and fuzz (phuzz), a bright led, true bypass switching and 9V centre negative powering.
Phil’s unique design, includes a unity gain output stage, that’s isolating the fuzz circuit from any active circuitry or buffers that follow it, as well as being able to drive long cable runs with no signal loss.
Like all vintage circuit boosters and fuzz pedals, the Silicon Phuzz should be placed first to be able to interact and respond to your pickups and the dynamics of your picking. However, a cluttered board with buffered Boss pedals and whatnot, won’t do anything to this pedal’s tone.