When it comes to fuzz pedals, Fulltone is one brand that inevitably makes it to the top of the list. Founded in 1991 by the legendary composer, guitarist, and performer, Michael Fuller, Fulltone quickly became a go-to brand for all music-lovers. And Fulltone has proven its worth yet again with the all-new 70-BC Fuzz Guitar Effects Pedal.
With a couple of BC-108C transistors, Fulltone 70 sounds outrageous when you compare it with the original fuzz from the 1970s. You will probably howl and growl while playing this fuzz box. But if you want something polite or soothing, the Fulltone Fuzz 70, isn't your cup of tea.
Fulltone 70 has been used by many renowned guitar players like Ron Wood, Keith Richards, Keith Richards, Joe Perry, Tom Hamilton, Reverend Horton Heat, Stone Gossard etc to name a few.
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Things to consider before buying a fuzz box
Fuzz is for those who love that added distortion, particularly the musicians who play rock music. Here are some factors that you should consider before buying a fuzz box:
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Features and Benefits
No matter how hard we try to catch up with technological innovation, it's difficult not to feel nostalgic when you hear vintage sounds. The 70's and 80's were the golden eras of jazz and rock. Many musicians these days are trying to recreate that magic with modern instruments. And the Fulltone 70-BC Fuzz is an attempt to help that magic spread.
When it comes to purchasing this beauty, you should know some of its features and why it's different from the other fuzz boxes.
Mismatched Silicon Transistors for Harmonic Content
Original Fuzzface had two versions - Arbiter Fuzzface with Germanium transistors and Dallas Arbiter Fuzzface with Silicon BC108-C transistors. The Silicon version had inspired the creation of Fulltone 70 pedals.
Fulltone 70 model was discontinued in 2009 by the company, after 15 years of production, due to non availability of the signature transistors. However, the company was able to source more than 2000 of these transistors in excellent condition and have relaunched the pedal as 70 BC-108C Fuzz Pedal.
Fulltone 70 has two intentionally mismatched silicon transistors in its circuitry that provide extra harmonic content.
Mid Control for Extra Clarity and Cut
Original Fuzzface was not able to cut through in the live band situation. 70-BC Fuzz pedal addresses the issue and includes a mid control for extra clarity of the midrange. This control is called the "Mids" and adds gain to the overall sound while particularly accentuating the mid frequencies. By playing with this control, you will hit upon a sweet spot where all the notes will sustain.
Internal BIAS Trimmer
70-BC Fuzz pedal has a preset Inter BIAS Trimmer that has an impact on the pedal's response, compression and transient response. It also allows the user to get either soft or very hard edged tones.
Controls functions on this pedal are very similar to those on other Fuzz units. A brief overview id presented below:
- 1Volume Knob: It controls the overall volume level in the ON state of the unit.
- 2Mid Control Knob or Mids: In clockwise rotation of the knob, gain and mid range is added. Ideal position of the knob is at 12 o'clock position. In full counterclockwise position (CCW), you will get stock Fuzzface sounds.
- 3Fuzz Knob: CW rotation adds distortion distortion and sustain. Effect is more pronounced only after 3 o'clock position and most gain comes towards the end of the rotation in CW direction. You may hear some crackling sound on turning Mids and Fuzz knob, which is normal.
- 4Internal BIAS Trimmer: CW movement softens the tone and causes more compression. Turn it CCW to increase the loudness, have faster tracking and accentuate the low range.
Many players feel that the pedal is much more nasty and heavy sounding than other pedals in the market. Coupling the pedal with a booster or an overdriven tube amplifier can be really brutal to your ears.
You can dial in a much wider spectrum of tones with this fuzz pedal as compared to the original Fuzzface. It has more aggressive and insane fuzz than the 69 pedal. With the Volume and Fuzz control knobs, you can adjust the required amount of saturation and sustain.
It does not get noisy and remains very responsive to your playing and guitar volume adjustments.
Use of top notch and custom built components
Fulltone pedals are manufactured in South California, USA and are known to last very long and sound amazing. They are made from the finest components, many of which are custom designed and built. These include 3PDT switches, 22 gauge copper wire without any tin coating and brass shaft pots (discussed below).
Long Lasting Pots
One of the main features of Fulltone pedals are the strong and smooth custom made brass shaft pots. These pots are mounted on the internal PCB using proprietary "through PCB" methods, as against the common practice of securing them by pot terminals. This method increases the life of the pots and reduces jumper wire connections on the board.
The relaunched 70 Fuzz Fulltone is housed in a smaller, OCD-sized [ 53.3 (H) x 114.3 (D) x 63.5 (W) mm ] steel box enclosure in its new avatar and is thus more pedalboard friendly now. The compact 16 gauge steel box enclosure makes the unit very rugged. The shell is powder coated in deep blue color and has light patterns drawn on it. Usually deep blue color will instill calm, but this Fulltone 70 pedal is an exact opposite.
Power Supply & Connections
Fulltone 70 Fuzz has 1 No. of Instrument Input and 1 No. of 1/4" output. The manufacturer recommends use of regulated DC power supply of 5 - 18 V with negative to center pin. 9V DC power supply or 1 x 9V batteries are commonly used (not included with the pedal). You can also use Fulltone's FPS-1 power supply.
Some of the other features are:
- 1It is not recommended to be used with Wah-Wah pedals due to excessive howling and screaming sounds.
- 2The pedal is ideally suited for older 4 input Marshall amps.
- 3It has a true bypass footswitch
Social Proof of the Pedal
Next, we present some of the reviews that sums up the opinion of majority of the players who have used Fulltone 70 and highlights its advantages and disadvantages:
This is a very detailed review where the user has expressed his satisfaction with virtually every feature of the Fulltone 70 ranging from mismatched transistors, volume knob exceeding guitar's output, Mids control, internal trim pot, quality construction, size, price to sound of the pedal.
The reviewer is impressed with Fulltone in general and with its its robust construction & amount of distortion produced by the pedal. In his view, the pedal is able to clean up the tone on reducing the guitar volume.
Even though the reviewer has rated the pedal with 4 stars, he feels disappointed. We have already stated in the Controls section of our review that the effect is pronounced after 3 o'clock setting only. Also, this pedal requires experience, practice and trial to dial in initially and is not for those looking for something soothing. But once you are able to dial in, it provides more fuzz than any other pedal in the market.
While Fulltone 70 is inspired by the vintage Fuzzface, it is not an exact replica of the original. It offers more fuzz than the 69 and any other similar pedals in the market. It is loaded with features like, mid control, internal bias trim pot, custom made quality components, small size to fit any pedalboard, sturdy enclosure and many more. Above all, this exaggerated distortion comes at a very affordable price. Click below to check it out !!