Mojo Hand Iron Bell review

December 17th 2012 | Posted in Big Muff Reviews | 86 Comments

A few weeks ago I reviewed the Colossus and I’m still impressed by the little beast. Mojo Hand FX has got me hooked and when they recently released a pedal that not only sported familiar graphics but also promised to capture David Gilmour’s tone, I just had to check it out. Here’s my review of the Iron Bell.

The Iron Bell is housed in a MXR-sized box with a bright status led, true bypass switching and it runs on either 9V battery or a Boss-style adapter. The pedal feature controls for volume, gain, tone and colour. The first three are pretty obvious, while the Colour control allow you to sculpt the frequency of the tone control – much like a mid range booster, although a bit more subtle.

To say that the Iron Bell is “Gilmour-in-a-box” is perhaps not fair. Of course, it takes much more than a simple stompbox to recreate his tones. But that was never really the intention either. The Iron Bell is designed to capture the vibe and feel of Gilmour’s tones throughout the decades. Since the early 70s, David has always paired his distortions with boosters and overdrives. From the Fuzz Face and Colorsound Power Boost combo to the classic Big Muff and Tube Driver setup, his tones has always had that powerful edge to them.

The Iron Bell isn’t based on any particular pedal but it definitely got a Big Muff flavour to it. It’s got the bright, aggressive top of the Ram’s Head, the fat lows of the early Sovtek models and the creamy, saturated gain of the RAT. If you do need a reference, think of a mix between the Cornish P2 and G2.

The first clip in the video, is an attempt at the Animals ram’s head and Power Boost combo. By maxing the gain, leaving the tone at noon and rolling off the colour, you’ll get a bright, aggressive tone with an amazing sustain and attack. The second clip, demonstrates David’s more recent Big Muff and Tube Driver combo as heard on the 2006 On an Island tour. By increasing the colour for a bit more mids, you’ll get that familiar, throaty tone. The last clip, feature the Iron Bell set up as an overdrive, typical of the smooth Division Bell Tube Driver and P90 pickups tones. Even with the gain rolled down considerably, the Iron Bell produce a creamy and warm tone.

So how does it compare to the Colossus? Well, while the Colossus is based on the Sovtek Civil War, with a dark, thunderous tone, the Iron Bell has much more gain and sustain, a brighter top and considerably less lower end. I also think it’s a bit more versatile than the Colossus, being capable of more than just the typical Big Muff tones. They both serve different purposes.

The Iron Bell can be paired up with a booster but personally I think it sounds best alone, with perhaps only some modulation and delay. What I especially like about it, is its ability to maintain its sustain and attack even at the lowest gain settings. Increasing the volume, also enhances the compression and smoothness. The Iron Bell also works nicely on bedroom setups and low volume levels.

Mojo Hand has done it again! Check out the Iron Bell if you’re searching for a versatile Big Muff-ish distortion that’ll provide a wide range of classic tones. Highly recommended! Visit mojohandfx.com for more details.

The Iron Bell was tested for both stage and home setups with a Reeves Custom 50 and a Laney CUB12 with both single coils and humbuckers.

86 comments so far

  1. David McDade says:

    Happy hollidays to you and your family Bjorn from Sacramento California! How dose this sound with the.DG20 pups? I love my musket, but now im looking for another pedal to handle the earlier floyd stuff, do you think this would be a good choise? It seemed to handle lower gain settings beautifully without losing any sustain.
    Anyways have a great christmas buddy!
    -dave

    [It works nicely with the DG20. The Musket is also very versatile but I think the Iron Bell is perhaps even better on lower volume levels. It has plenty of mid range though, so you don't really need to boost that much with the DG20. Enjoy the holidays! - Bjorn]

  2. Jean Loup says:

    Amazing!
    I’ve been waiting for your review since I heard about the Iron Bell

    Very nice playing and tone :)

    Only one little question, what settings are you using on your RT20? I can get cool Steven Wilson tone from it but I can’t find a good sound for gilmourish tone

    Thanks a lot :)

    [Thanks! Mode I, effect 8:00, direct 12:00, balance 11:00, overdrive off, slow 2:00. - Bjorn]

  3. Peter says:

    Once again,very good review!!! Im looking for a rams head clone, u think this will do they job? Or should i find another clone cause u said it got the rams head sound and it also got the sovtek sound. I checked mojo Hands site and cat realy find how to get it here to Sweden haha. //Best regards Peter

    [The Iron Bell doesn't really sound like a ram's head. It has some of that aggressive, bright top but you can't really compare them. If you want a ram's head you better check out the Electronic Orange Pig Hoof or the BYOC Large Beaver :) That being said, the Iron Bell is very versatile and should give you a wide range of different lead tones. - Bjorn]

  4. Karst says:

    It’s becoming increasingly difficult to make a choice between all these muff clones. On the other hand, it’s always a pleasure to hear you demoing them!

    Do you think this Iron Bell would be a good choice if I want to nail Pulse-type tones (I’m thinking about the Sorrow solo), on a cub12r with cs69s in my strat?

    [Yep! - Bjorn]

  5. Amund Blix Aaeng says:

    Well this made me buy one, $151.41 shipped to Norway from Prymaxe, not bad! :) What sold me was the variation of tones you could get without stacking it with another pedal. The Pig Hoof totally rocks, but kinda needs that boost after it, and sometimes I’d might need to use that boost differently. So a pedal that can do all that on it’s own is fantastic. :)
    Now talk me out of getting a DR103 or a good clone… :D

    [Ha ha, I'm afraid you need to decide on that yourself :) Speaking of witch... Reeves... check out Reeves :) Anyway, ha en fin jul! - Hilsen Bjørn]

  6. Ross says:

    Hi Bjorn, how do you think this compares to the Sunface Analogman B108/B109?
    The YouTube video of the Pink Floyd Time Solo / Sunface Demo by kitraefantasyart using the B108 really gives an accurate fuzz for the Time solo, bang on! Just wondering if this pedal can do the same!
    Cheers, Ross

    [The Pigs clip is as close as you'll get... well, the closest I got, anyway. It does a good job but a Muff has a much more saturated tone compared to a fuzz, so if you want that authentic, raw edge, you better check out the SunFace 108 or the new 109. Also recommend the MJM London Fuzz (blue). - Bjorn]

  7. Dan Parker says:

    Thanks for this Bjorn, good write up! I am considering this for a small board I am putting together for Early Gilmour and Bjorn Airbag tones! Seems a cool and nicely realised pedal.

    [Nice! Looking forward to see a pic of the board :) - Bjorn]

  8. Doug Kramer says:

    Excellent review, thank you! How would you say this compares to the Skreddy P19?

    [Thanks! I haven't had the chance to try the P19 yet, so I can't really comment on that. I think the idea behind both are similar though, trying to capture the tone you get from combining Muffs with boosters. - Bjorn]

  9. Karst says:

    Well, this is good news! By the way, is the Pigs backing track available somewhere, or is it something you put together for the occasion?

    [All three backingtracks were recorded for this review :) - Bjorn]

  10. Marc-Andre Paquette says:

    Very nice playing Bjiorn! and of course thanks for sharing the info!

    Happy holidays to you and your family!

    [Thank you! Enjoy the holidays! - Bjorn]

  11. payam says:

    Well done Bjorn
    I think it is time to add some new backtrack as a Christmas gift for all Gilmourish fan page :D
    Again Nice work man.

    [Thanks! - Bjorn]

  12. Scooter says:

    Well Bjorn, great reveiw as always!! Been eyeing this little pedal now that its reviewed here I got to have it! Come on Santa

    [Thanks! - Bjorn]

  13. Gabe says:

    Wow, I think I might actually have to get this right now. That is spot on, and you are right it isn’t something you can pin down to a model. Oh and by the way the article was saying that they didn’t necessarily want it to be “Gilmour in a box” but rather to be in the spirit of what he did.

  14. Tony says:

    First of all, SUPERB playing Bjorn. Is this a pedal you would say can effectively cover everything from Meddle to Gdansk? Or is if you could only own ONE dirt pedal (God forbid) what would you choose??

    [Thanks! As you can hear from the clip, it's capable of a wide range of tones. I think it does a pretty good job replicating fuzz and Muff and quite OK for overdrive but a dedicated overdrive would be more suited and easier to control and set up. It's very versatile but I'm having a hard time recommending just one gain pedal that does it all... there are too many different tones for any pedal to cover that I think. - Bjorn]

  15. Keith says:

    Bjorn, I can’t put my finger on the reason, but wasn’t there a picture, and mention of this pedal a couple of months back? I seem to remember posting about Pink Floyd inspired graphics, and marketing techniques? Great review, another,”Bjorn made me spend it, sorry kids!” Pedal. Hehehe.
    Much love to all during this season of joy, Keith

    [Indeed. I posted an early promo shot of the pedal on the Gilmourish Facebook page and I guess we had a little discussion. Enjoy the holidays, Keith! - Bjorn]

  16. Keith says:

    Hey Bjorn, while I was posting the last message about an hour ago, I looked at yesterday’s mail, and my local big box music store catalog was there, I just started looking through it, and while I’m not a big Dunlop fan, they’ve just put out a 70th Anniversary Jimi Hendrix series of pedals, a MXR sized” same Dallas Arbiter circuit” , true bypass, bright LED, and awesome Hendrix graphics. The other two pedals may be garbage, but they claim to be the same circuits as Hendrix used, but all in the MXR size box. The Octavio, like he used at the end of Watchtower, for the outro solo, and a Uni-Vibe, and all it says is that it’s analog, and it says “Uni-Vibe” on the pedal. All three are $129, which is a great price for the Fuzz-Face, which is the only one of the three that I’d bet is the real deal. The other two, I’m skeptical, but maybe someone in the community will try them and report back. By the way, as I’m typing this, I got my Fedex notification, my speakers are 6 blocks away, and ready for pick-up, and the Strat should be ready by no later than Thursday. Finally, Whew, that was a long wait!
    Peace Y’all, let us know if anyone checks out that Uni-Vibe, Keith

    [Yeah, I've seen them and PGS has done some nice demos over at their site. I haven't been able to try them my self yet but I don't see why they should be any good. I think all four, including the wah, should make up a pretty good sounding Hendrix setup that could easily double for a 1968-1975 Gilmour setup. Not sure about the UniVibe but it's either solid state or a one photocell circuit as far as I can tell. - Bjorn]

  17. Mfinucane says:

    Hi Bjorn

    Merry Christmas and many thanks for yet another outstanding review.

    With respect to using this as a replacement for a rat and a fairly generic sounding BM clone, how we’ll does it stack up if it were to be used as the main distortion for leads and higher gains (mainly for classic rock incl. floyd). I would be using it in conjunction with a way huge green rhino and red llama (which is great for transparent mild distortion boost) as well as the usual elec mistress/ph 90/delay etc

    Many thanks

    Mark

    [Thank you, Mark! I think it'll double nicely as a Gilmour lead and classic rock pedal. You don't really need to pair it with a booster since it's got so much gain and tone on its own. I realized that it was just too much even with a super clean ThroBak after it. Enjoy the holidays! - Bjorn]

  18. martin says:

    great sounding pedal, but …

    david gilmour did most of his best work with just a few very common pedals.

    now he is a well educated and experienced (old) guitar player with perfect guitar technique and hundreds of the best and expensive gear parts you can grab.

    but still i prefer the the sound of the young guitar player gilmour – and i still prefer that (not so perfect) playing of those earlier days (pompeii and later). just a strat, a cheap fuzz, an ordinary
    booster, one echorec (which most people used at that time) and an amp.

    Some days ago I saw a young man who must have spent a fortune on equipment. a gilmour-cs-guitar, every cornish pedal you can buy, a collection of jam pedals, two hiwatt amps and a lot more. He tried to do “echoes” and “shine on” … it sounded awful.
    You know what i mean?

    [Well, that's your opinion. I do agree to some extent though. I too prefer David's earlier tones but I don't think that has anything to do with the quality and price tag of the pedals. Apart from his 80s and 90s rigs, which were quite overwhelming, he has pretty much stayed with the same setup since Atom and Meddle. A fuzz, overdrive, delay and perhaps some modulation. His 2006 setup was even more low key than Animals and Wall. The fact that he has a few state of the art units in his rig, doesn't really do much for the overall tone. It's more about convenience and ensuring proper signal, power etc. Now, it doesn't matter how much you spend on your gear if you can't play. A good rule is perhaps to learn how to play, before you buy a lot of stuff, but that's everyone's choice to make... - Bjorn]

  19. Karl from Tahoe says:

    Bjorn Happy Holidays to you , your family and the Band.

    another great review. Where can we purchase one of these Bad Boys?

    [Thanks, Karl! Check out proguitarshop.com and prymaxevintage.com. Enjoy the holidays! - Bjorn]

  20. Rene says:

    Great sounding pedal, and great job playing Bjorn. You really have the Gilmour sound dialed-in incredibly good. How does the Iron Bell compare to the Musket?

    [Thank you, Rene! It's two different beasts, I think. The Musket is based on the early Sovteks and with the additional controls, you can sculpt it further for either some accurate Sovtek sounds or something completely different. I think it sounds more like a Muff than the Iron Bell. Having said that, the Iron Bell is perhaps a more versatile pedal, that'll double for Muffs, fuzz, Rat etc. - Bjorn]

  21. Shawn Smalley says:

    Sounds like there won’t be much need for a separate compressor with the pedal engaged, correct? I know the clips were recorded without one, but I’m wondering what (if any) use a compressor might have with this pedal. Might simplify one’s Gilmourish setup versus lots of different gain pedals…

    [I don't think you need one. It has so much mid range, that'll smooth out those sometimes harsh tops and you might even end up with just a lot of noise. I've used a compressor on the low gain settings that I used for the last clip, and it worked quite nice. Adds a bit more attack to the notes. Personally, I prefer Dynacomps and similar transparent compressors, with Big Muffs. - Bjorn]

  22. Tony says:

    Forgot to ask how well this cleans up? Thank you.

    [Very well. The last Division Bell-ish clip was done with the gain at 25% and you can get a pretty clean tone by rolling down the guitar volume. However, this is a high gain pedal, so it won't clean up as good as an overdrive or germanium fuzz. - Bjorn]

  23. Nick Veekens says:

    Wow this one sounds really good! I think Christmas may get a little lean at my house this year ;-) Great playing as well! I was wondering, do you use any other effects during the first and second part? Any delay or reverb settings? That C-numb tone is just to die for!

    Great work!!!

    Best regards from the Netherlands!

    [Thanks! The Pigs and Comf Numb bits are played using just the Iron Bell. Delays and reverb was added in the mix. I think I used aprox 440ms delay time for both. - Bjorn]

  24. Charles says:

    I love watching all your reviews just to hear you play! As the soon to be owner of a Laney Cub 10, I am really combing through your reviews trying to figure out which muff is best for me. I had pretty much settled on the BYOC Large Beaver until I saw this review. Now I am confused! What would your suggestion be for the Gilmour fan that could only afford one of these two fine pedals? The Iron Bell seems really appealing because you state a booster/ OD is not necessary.

    [For a home setup I think I'd go for the Iron Bell. It will be easier to setup on a low volume level. - Bjorn]

  25. Karst says:

    I was also wondering — what is your experience with amp simulations of a pc/mac? Have you by chance experimented with some of the stompboxes you reviewed (in a chain like this : guitar -> stompbox -> soundcard instrument input -> quality clean amp sim) ? If not, do you think it’s a risky bet for someone who usually uses sims to add little boxes in front of his soundcard? I know that you’re more into the real thing when it comes to amps, but I’d be pleased to hear about your experience on this. Even if you have to answer “I have really no idea.” ;)

    [There are some really good amp and pedal sims on the market, Line 6, Amplitube, Guitar Rig and even Logic has some decent sims. However, it depends on what tones you're looking for. There's no unit that can do it all, simply because all the little tweaks you do to a real rig, can't be replicated digitally. At least not when you're trying to make something that's suitable for a wider audience and customer base. Some are good at cleans, while other does some amazing lead tones. There's also the issue with digital processing, harsh transients etc, which isn't as dynamic and warm sounding as an analog setup would be. You can compensate to some extent with proper sound interfaces, compressors and pre-amps. I always use PODs or the Logic setup when I do demos for my band. It's just much easier and faster to set up. Sometimes I use some of the tracks too, especially some weird effects, echo stuff etc. You can stick a pedal infront of a POD or PC but there will be some impedance issues. Some pedals are OK with, while others will sound like crap. I've had some good results with modulations especially. - Bjorn]

  26. Brad says:

    Hello Bjorn! I hope you are doing well! I absolutely love the way you made this pedal sound. This year my mother told me she was gonna get me something for christmas wether I like it or not lol she said it might as well be something I really want or itd be more clothes T_T soo I said well there is this new pedal called the iron bell…lol So she got it for me. Cant wait to play it!! I have a North Effects Violet Rams Head, and a toptone DG-1, but I do believe this pedal will exceed both on the “Gilmourish” scale, and be more versatile than both. Im guessing this pedal handles a misstress and rt-20 with full distortion nicely also? I tend to use those two modulations alot now with my big muffs. Ive been using the rt-20 alot since I just bought it so I hope the Iron Bell sounds good with it. Im going for those Animal rotary tones and Wall/Final cut flanger tones. I can make it work Im sure :) Well, Im done babbling. Thanks Bjorn, I think I speak for everyone when I say that this website has helped us more than you can imagine! You are as brilliant as you are kind and helpful! I hope you and your family have a great Christmas this year! and God Bless!

    Brad

    [Congrats Brad! Sounds like you'll get a nice christmas this year :) The Iron Bell sounds great with chorus, Mistress and RT20. You can also place a transparent booster after it to smoothen out the tone even more. Just be careful with the gain, since the Iron Bell already has all the gain it requires. - Bjorn]

  27. Benoit says:

    Hi Bjorn, great review as always… I was going to buy myself a JHS all american…but now I want an Iron Bell… I was wondering if you tried the all american??? thanks have a happy holiday.

    [Hi Benoit! Never tried the American, so I can't really tell. From what I understand it's based on the RAT. Perhaps a bit more versatile for other styles, than the Iron Bell, but for David's tones and Muffs, I'd go with the Iron. Enjoy the holidays! - Bjorn]

  28. Thomas M. says:

    Excellent review and playing Bjorn!! So many great Muff clone reviews lately. Great sounds and they all have their own place. I have the Musket and I really like it, but I think I may have to pick the Iron Bell up and see how I like it compared to the Musket.

    Also Bjorn, are you still using GHS Gilmour Signature 10-48 strings? Maybe its just me but your guitar looks really easy and fun to play lol. My guitar needs a setup and fret level BAD so It’s something I noticed.

    [Thanks! Yeah, the guitar is a dream to play. I'm using regular GHS Boomers 10-46 now. - Bjorn]

  29. michael says:

    an iron bell is on it’s way…. my first big muff after 18 years of playing the guitar.

    i did build a clone a few years ago from some schematics but i don’t recall what type – it was silly how noisy it was.

    [Congrats! I think you'll be very pleased with it! - Bjorn]

  30. Tristan M. says:

    Hey Bjorn! I see you have a review for the Alter Ego delay and in that you state how if there was to be a new echorec clone, that it needed to have a control for modulation. Well you’re in luck, Catalinbread just came out with their own echorec clone and it has a trim pot inside for modulation. Could you do a review for it?

    [Yep, I've seen it and are on the waiting list for one! Can't wait to try it out :) - Bjorn]

  31. Toni says:

    Hi Bjorn, nice review, though it makes me feel like buying it and… I don’t need it, I’ve got (and enjoy) a Red Muck from Jam Pedals which I love, specially when I add the Tube Driver or the CSPB and some phaser. You bring us temptation! ; )
    Anyway, it’s always a pleasure just to hear your amazing tone and playing!
    My question: in your answer to Karst you mention that you’ve obtained great results recording with Logic some demos for your band. Which are the Logic name of project, amp sims, effects, etc that you mostly use with Logic? No need to say that it will never sound like the real thing, but I also use Logic to demo some drafts of songs since it’s much faster than the usual set up of amp, pedalboard and so on.
    Thanks and happy new year.
    Toni

    [Thanks for your kind words, Toni! I use Logic to record and I add mixing tools like delay, reverb, compression etc. For my tones I either mic a full rig or use a Line 6 POD for demos. I haven't really explored the Logic amp and pedal sims that much. - Bjorn]

  32. Jason says:

    Hi Bjorn, happy new year! another very nice review… tkz!

    I get my tone with the proco rat white face and the ibanez ts9. I think that I need a muff/fuzz in my set. Considering that I already have a distortion effect with the rat + ts9, would you recommend add the Iron Bell, the Colossus, the Musket or the Large Beaver in my set to get all eras David Gilmour with these distortion pedals that I already have? which one muff/fuzz would be better in this case?

    thankz!

    Jason.

    [Happy new year, Jason! Depends on what guitar/pickups and amp you're using. The Musket is perhaps the most versatile of the lot but the Colossus and Large Beaver is perhaps the most Muff-sounding. The Iron Bell, as I've said in the review, is kind of a mix between a RAT and Muff, but it's really not fair to make that comparison either. It really has a sound of its own. - Bjorn]

  33. Keith says:

    This Post is purely to say HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL IN THE GILMOURISH COMMUNITY! A very special thanks to my Obi-Wan, Bjorn, for his guidence, and the inspiration this site has given me, and also to my Gilmorish pal Stephen, who has answered some important queztions, and is also half responsible for my choosing the Custom 50 with PS! May 2013 be Gilmourish’s best year yet, and may it be a wonderful year for all humankind
    Sincerely, Keith Clarke

    [Thank you, Keith! All the best for 2013 to you too! - Bjorn]

  34. Nihar says:

    Hey Bjorn,
    This pedal sounds completely fantastic. How does it sound with the Electric Mistress though? Does it play nicely or does it sound overly bright/warm? Completely off topic, but when are we getting the next Buyer’s Gear Guide? I’m looking forward to the updated budget guide (15 year old gilmour addict here).
    Thanks,
    Nihar

    [It sounds great with the Mistress and chorus as well. I'll have the new BGGs up in a couple of weeks. The budget section will take a bit longer but I'm planning on spending most of the coming months focusing on budget setups and bedroom playing. - Bjorn]

  35. Keith says:

    Hey Bjorn, I finally looked at the Caitlinbread site, and was amazed that it’s priced at $229.00US! That’s less than my DD-20. I can’t wait to find out if it’s all it’s supposed to be, because at that price, I’d be more tgan happy to get that huge DD off the board. Hope yours comes soon, I am anxious to see a review I know I can trust! You gave not steered me wrong yet.
    Peace, Love, and Gilmourish, Keith

    [I'm still on the waiting list for a review but I might just buy one my self. Looking forward to try it! - Bjorn]

  36. Marvin Brown says:

    Hello, Bjorn. I’ve been a Gilmourish fan for several years. Really enjoy your reviews and playing. Love the Iron Bell review. I bought a BYOC Large Beaver last year, based on your review. Looks like I’ll be getting an Iron Bell soon, based on same. Also, I’ve been checking out the DigiTech Whammy pedal and wondering what you think of it … for soaring tunes like “The Blue,” etc. Keep up the good work!

    [Thanks, Marvin! I haven't tried the new Whammy, but from what I understand it's supposed to be closer to the original one, than the previous models. Shold work nicely for Marooned and The Blue :) - Bjorn]

  37. Amund Blix Aaeng says:

    My Iron Bell should be in any day now, really looking forward to try it. Also have an Arc Effects Big Green PI coming in a couple weeks, let me know if you want to try it. :)

    [Congrats! I've been looking at the Big Green myself... looks very promising. Love to hear your verdict on it :) - Bjorn]

  38. Julien says:

    Hello Bjorn!
    I just bought a Mojo Hand Fx Iron Bell thanks to your review. I play it with a Laboga Alligator amp and two 2×12 Orange (Vintage 30 / GreenBack speakers) in combination with a TC Electronic Nova system into the FX loop. The sound is incredible for my lead tones! And even if I play in a post metal band, I was not afraid of the pink color. :D
    Thanks!!!

    [Glad to hear! Cheers! - Bjorn]

  39. Keith says:

    Hello Bjorn, as usual, I’m off topic, but didn’t know where to post. I’m getting really tired of hooking up my pedals everytime I play. I will soon have a secure practice space, but while still just playing at home, or at jams, I have to break my pedals down when not in use, so I’m going to start building a board. My question is: What is a very reasonably priced power supply that will handle all my pedals, all of them are 9v, except the Deluxe Mistress which is 12, or 18, (I don’t pay attention, just plug it in! hehe). I am B-R-O-K-E, thank you very much for giving me the disease called GAS! I still need a couple of pedals,(12 or 15 just aren’t enough), but seriously think a good, but reasonable power supply should be my next purchase.
    I’d also like to say that excluding my ramblings, the Gilmourish posts seem to be all so interesting, and filled with grest questions, even more than usual lately, which says a lot for all you’ve done to inform your readers, even an old player such as myself!
    Thanks for everything, Peace, Keith

    [Hi Keith! Check out the TRex Fuel Tank Chameleon and Junior. Great stuff and reasonably priced :) - Bjorn]

  40. Karst says:

    Hi Bjorn, and happy new year! Thanks for your answer to my question regarding amp sims. On this matter, I own Guitar Rig 5 Pro, but I’m hardly satisfied with it — I find that most of the time clean sounds are flat, distorted sounds too synthetic and that it often kills dynamics — nuances in the playing. It might sound great in a mix, but playing through it can be quite dull. One could argue that nothing is free and that the time spent tweaking can be highly rewarded, and I would normally agree, but I recently gave a try to several free plugins, and I was quite blown away.

    For instance, LePou’s LeXtac amp is amazing, and it’s now my go-to clean amp sim (yellow channel), combined with the free Marshall 1960A/Celestion G12M impulses from Redwirez (there’s plenty of room for experiments here). I usually add RAT and Tube Screamer simulations from TSE808 and Distorque Audio’s Vitamin C (Orange Squeezer sim) for compression. And I really rediscovered the way amp sims feel. Not only does it sound great, but it does so with little to no tweaking, while all the same feeling more alive, dynamic, dare I say organic (especially with a tad of chorus). If you have some time to try these out in the future, I’d be interested to know what you think about them. They might not be the best tools to precisely reproduce David’s tones, but I’d take a noticeably different but more alive sound over a flat carbon copy any day. And, after all, the tone is in the fingers (or at least a fair part of it), and the evolution of David’s tone show that change is not necessarily a bad thing.

    Anyway, back to more usual hardware matters. Being gradually transitioning from a computer setup to a real amp/fx setup, I re-read your Big Muff tone tutorial recently, especially the budget/bedroom section, and wondered how a RAT + overdrive would fare against an Iron Bell (or any other versatile Muff clone). From what I read, the first combo would be more flexible and, if the overdrive is transparent enough, it could also double as a boost for powerful (cranked) clean sounds, with or without a compressor in the chain. I read of your enthusiasm about the tiny Mooer pedals, and given that thay can be had for 55€ apiece from a British e-store, I am quite ready to pull the trigger on a Black Secret (RAT clone) and a Hustle Drive (supposedly OCD clone, but not quite — more transparent than a Tube Screamer anyway). Mooer also makes a Tube Screamer clone, but I think my guitars are middy enough (one with high output humbuckers, the other with an EMG DG-20, which I finally chose over a CS69 set); they also make a BD-2 clone, but I found no noteworthy review of it, while everyone seems to rave about the Hustle Drive (you can check the Prymaxe review to hear how it sounds).

    Finally getting to the point: with Pulse tones in mind, do you think that this would be an interesting choice (potentially well-sounding, versatile), over an Iron Bell, for a bedroom setup (in a cub12r amp) ? In spite of what you way about the Iron Bell, I have the feeling that the RAT + OD combo can cover more types of sounds and make for a more versatile (bedroom) setup, am I mistaken ?

    (My apologies for the excessively long read, I guess that’s the price of being one of the best — if not the best — references on all things gilmourish ;) )

    [Hi! Please forgive my late reply. First of all, thanks for all the sims links! I haven't really explored this that much myself. I'll certainly check these out :) Now, to the Q. The RAT is, in my opinion, one of the most versatile distortion pedals out there. It can produce anything from overdrive, to creamy distortion to near fuzz. It can also do a pretty good Muff tone. A Big Muff is... a Big Muff... The Iron Bell is somewhere in between but it's still more a Muff than a RAT, so if you want something versatile for David's tones and other genres, I'd go for the RAT. The Black Secret is quite good. I think Prymaxe just came out with a BD2 clone review. Sounds quite good. - Bjorn]

  41. David says:

    Bjorn,

    Thanks for all your reviews and expert advice on setups!

    My Iron Bell is on order! Received the Colossus a couple of weeks back too! Looking forward to exploring the two of them!

    Dave

    [Thanks and congrats! - Bjorn]

  42. Nick Veekens says:

    Hi Bjorn.

    A bit off-topic but have you tried the Ibanez Tsa15H amp? It sounds pretty good on youtube but just thought I’d ask you as well. :-)

    @Keith: I have used the Voodoo Lab Pedal Power 2+ which was a good power supply but a bit limited optionwise. So I sold thay one and bought the MXR (Dunlop) MC403 which I have been using for a while now. This has all the options you will ever need! My pedalboard usually houses anything between 14-16 pedals and I can power them all. Even powers my Nova Delay! It’s also dead silent since all ports are shielded / isolated! The price is maybe a bit steep (though not that steep) but to me it’s well worth it! It powers up to 16 pedals and has power socket so you’d have to buy 2-3 comparable units from other brands just to match that! Also comes with all the cables you need. Check it out! (I sound a bit like a MXR salesman, don’t I? ) I’m not though. Just your average Gilmourite…..;-)

    [Yeah, tried both the 15 and 30. Great clean tone and the TS9 circuit sounds great! - Bjorn]

  43. Jorge says:

    Hi Bjorn, I’m begining with fuzz pedals and I’m gonna buy muy first one this week. Do you recommend this Mojo Iron Bell more than EHX little Big Muff Pi or EHX Muff Tone Wicker? I have a Fender Blues Junior and American Standard stock pickups, What do you recommend?? I like the EarthQuaker Hoof Fuzz too. Thanks a lot!

    [Depends on what tones you want. Of the ones you mention, the Iron Bell is perhaps the most versatile and I guess it will work best with your setup. The Hoof Fuzz has a more vintage flavour that's great for David's 70s tones in particular. - Bjorn]

  44. Keith says:

    Hey Bjorn! Hope all is well. I just wanted to say it looks like someones getting a few corporate,(small, but very respectable companies) sponsors. I think thats great, and I also like the way you’ve moved the right side of the page around, it makes navagating the posts, and articles just a little quicker, and the ads look great. I have had a personal setback, and may have lost my biggest account, so while I won’t be buying many Gilmourish equipment for awhile, at least I’ll have more time to practice! ( Gotta make something positive out of it, and thing always work out in the end!)
    Peace to you and yours, always thinking of you, and thankful for the joy this site has provided. Keep up the good work! God bless, Keith

    [Yeah, I've always had banners but now I've moved them to the front page. I like to support new, smaller companies that has a philosophy and not least products that I believe in and use my self. I'm very sorry to hear about your financial situation. I'm sure it will pick up! - Bjorn]

  45. Scott says:

    Hi Bjorn, first off, this has been such a wonderful site to follow over the years. Thank you for all of the hard work you put into it. Reading through this review, I think I am like many of the other posters who were going to buy something else until they read this! Based on the what I have been reading on your site I was sure I was going to buy a Musket, but now this Iron Bell has me second-guessing.
    I switch between a Deluxe Strat with Lace Hot Gold pickups and a PRS CS24 with humbuckers into a Mesa Boogie Mark V. For most things I am satisfied with what I get out of the amp, but I feel like something is missing trying to play DG’s stuff. So I thought a fuzz/muff pedal would help me get that saturated / compressed kind of tone at a bedroom level volume. I have an OCD that I have tried to use and it does help add something to the Mark V’s dirty channels. I am going for Wall (Comfortably Numb to Young Lust). If the pedal could cover early 90′s Smashing Pumpkins fuzz territory, that would be a bonus. I don’t have any way to demo these pedals, so any insight would be appreciated. Do I go for the Musket or Iron Bell(I do realize either of these would be most likely used with the clean channel)?

    [Hi Scott! Thanks a lot for your kind words! I'm not that familiar with the Mark V but you should be able to set it up for a nice clean Gilmour tone and use pedals with it for your gains. Muffs tend to sound very different on different amps and your Lace and humbucker pickups will of course also colour the tone. Perhaps not the best pickups for David's tones but again, you should be able to dial in some great tones nevertheless. Between the two, I would say that the Musket is the Muffiest, while the Iron Bell is the most versatile. Both will produce Gilmour, Corgan, Santana etc tones but given your setup, I think you'll get the most out of the Iron Bell. - Bjorn]

  46. Karst says:

    [A Big Muff is... a Big Muff... The Iron Bell is somewhere in between but it's still more a Muff than a RAT, so if you want something versatile for David's tones and other genres, I'd go for the RAT. The Black Secret is quite good. I think Prymaxe just came out with a BD2 clone review. Sounds quite good. - Bjorn]

    Well, that settles the matter! Thanks for your input. I may fall for a true Muff one day (and the Iron Bell sure sounds great), but for now I’ll choose the RAT. Thanks also for pointing out Prymaxe’s demo of the BD-2 clone, which I missed. From what I’ve heard, I must say that I prefer the Hustle Drive, so I’ll be getting it along with the RAT and see how they work together. Thanks again for being such an inspiring source of information.

    [Thank you Karst! The Hustle Drive, as you've pointed out, is kind of an OCD clone, which again is heavily based on the TS9 circuit. These all have a lot of mid range, which perhaps isn't the best alternative for boosting. The OCD or Hustle does have a hi mode, which adds a bit more presence, but ideally I would recommend the Hustle as a dedicated overdrive and the Blues Mood for boosting. - Bjorn]

  47. Keith says:

    @ Nick Veekens, thanks for the heads up on the power supply, so I figured I’d return the favor on the TSA15H, and matching cabinet. For a home practice amp, I don’t think there is a better tube amp out there. It eats pedals, and is very loud for 15, or 5 watts, dead silent, and stick a set of jjs in the pres, and outputs, and you have an awesome little monster. When the 30 watt combo, and niw head came out, I went crazy, and immediately bought the first TSA30COMBO SAM ASH had in stock, but found that unlike thr very well made 15, the tube sockets were not mountex to the chassis. I had the first 30 for 6 months before it died, the second 30 died after 2 hours, and the third 30 was bad at the store when I went to pick it up. It’s really sad, because before the first 30 died, I was so impressed, the additional mids knob, and added gain stage, plus 30 watts being close enough to gig with because of the amps unlimited headroom made me absolutely rave about the amp. But you know the adage, if it seems too good to be true, it most likely is. I have not checked if the 30 watt head has chassis mounted tube sockets, but if it doesn’t, I would make sure you could get your money back if it has problems. However, my 15 is still as good a 15 watt amp as I’ve heard, great clean headroom almost to full volume once the jjs are installed, and because it’s cathode biased, you don’t have to bias the amp when you change thise outout tubes. Bjorn I’m sure will give a fine review of these amos, but I’ve gad the 15 for 18 months, and it’s bulletproof, but three 30s in seven months, and the first lasted six, you be the judge. Can’t go wrong with the 15 imho!
    Hope my precautionary tale was okay Bjorn?
    Thanks all, especially Bjorn, peace, love, and Gilmourish, Keith

  48. Karl says:

    Hey Bjorn,

    I loved the review. The only problem is now I’m on the fence over which pedal I should order. I have been looking at the BYOC Large Beaver but after reading your review I’m having second thoughts. I mostly play through a 62 Bassman clone I built but I also sometimes use a Hot Rod Deville or Peave Classis 30. I liked the fact that you mentioned that this pedal is very versital and can be used at any volume. I currently use a Jam Pedal Red Muck in my pedal chain, which I love, but its just missing something for me. My pedal board has a MXR Dyna Comp, Red Muck, BD2 or BK Butler Tube Drive, Carbon Copy. So I guess my question is do you think the Iron Bell would better fit over the Large Beaver? Or maybe a different pedal. Thanks for all your AWESOME work on this site, you keep me thinking and playing.

    [Thanks for your kind words, Karl! The Iron Bell and LB are two different pedals. While the LB is very close to the original Muffs, the Iron Bell is something between a Muff and a more conventional distortion, like the RAT. The Red Muck is based on the early Sovtek models and is perhaps the mildest sounding in terms of gain. Depends on what tones you want, I guess. To keep it short, the Large Beaver is more authentic Muff, while the Iron Bell is more versatile for other genres and tones. - Bjorn]

  49. Karl says:

    Thanks Bjorn… I think I’m gonna stick with LB. I may pick up Iron Bell in a few months.

  50. James says:

    Hi Bjorn, just one question, is the pig hoof still your favorite Gilmour pedal or do you have another favorite?

    [It's still on my stage board, yes. Depends on what tones I want. It's the best sounding ram's head era Muff I've tried and I guess that's my favourite tones too but sometimes I'll use a Sovtek or a clone or perhaps something very different, like the Costa Lab Custom Muff or the Hoof Fuzz. But yes, the Pig Hoof is still my main unit. - Bjorn]

  51. Ole says:

    Hi, bought this one after your excellent review! I’m not so good at recognizing DGs fuzz tones from different eras. So, could you recommend some settings on the Iron Bell for different periods?

    [Try the settings shown in the clip. That should give you a start :) - Bjorn]

  52. Dan Richter says:

    Hey Bjorn,

    Thanks again for taking the time to answer all my questions. I just got my Iron Bell. The first time I tried it at extremly low volume it was OK. Then I used at practice with alot of volume and it came alive. I can not get over how much gain it has. This is my first fuzz type pedal and I finally have found the creamy tones I was looking for. I almost got the Big Muff PI with tone wicker before I found your site and your awesome reviews. Your site is now one of my favorite places for tone research. Thanks for sharing your gifts and knowledge with us.

    Take care
    Dan

    [Thank you Dan! Glad you found your tone! - Bjorn]

  53. Keith Clarke says:

    Bjorn, just a quick Thank you for putting up with my incessant posts. I don’t do it to monopolize the site, I just love the site so much, and as you know, read it during every single mornings Zen time. Because I’m on here so much, if I think of something, I post it. I hope no one minds, if so, please feel free to tell me to shut up!LOL I, like most here, have had a life long love affair with David, and PF, and there is so much more I’ve learned since finding Gilmourish, and on a rare occasion, I think of something I feel may be helpful. I’m just Learning To Fly!
    Thanks, Keith

    [No worries Keith! I think we all enjoy reading your posts and the discussions. Thanks for supporting and contributing. - Bjorn]

  54. scootah...oz says:

    Hi Bjorn,How you going?
    I put the Iron Bell on the pedal board yesterday and i reckon it will have a permanent place.
    Not often you try a peddle and are mightly impressed from the first chords and notes.
    I put the settings you used and loved them all.
    I reckon Gdansk to the Division bell settings will be most prominent.
    I also put a Supernatural from PGS on the board.Some great reverby effect there
    although to be used sparingly.
    Have 3 gigs booked for Feb. so looking fwd to torturing the punters…
    Thanks for the help…
    Scott…

    [Sorry for the late reply Scott. Glad to hear that the Iron Bell is working out :) Good luck with the gigs! - Bjorn]

  55. Zac says:

    Great review Bjorn! was really surprised when i heard that first note you played! i’ve been looking for a versatile muff clone for a while as i own the current nyc pi….. anyway its my birthday in a few days and im praying that the iron bell will be waiting for me! haha cant wait to get the nyc muff off my board! its destroying every sound! completely useless…

    [Couldn't agree more. I think you'll be very pleased with the Iron Bell. - Bjorn]

  56. Tom says:

    Hiya Bjorn, Hope things are going well with you & the band !
    Superb job with the review for the Iron Bell, it sure sounds like a fantastic versatile little pedal :).
    I’m currently waiting to try one out within next few weeks since the shop that stocks it is still waiting for shipment to arrive, a bit of a drag I guess. Wanted to personally thank you for giving us fellow musos & Gilmour fans your honest & in depth opinion each time you do a review, and for showing us a good clear contrast between what each pedal/gear is expected to do. I myself haven’t had the pleasure of owning a true Muff, which is why I’m keen to get one that sounds great. I have a Skreddy Lunar Module which I absolutely love & have a boutique Rat clone type which is decent sounding too. As for my sound preference I love Gilmour’s tones from Meddle/DSOTM, which I can achieve with the Lunar Module very well and his more current ones especially Gdansk/Island. I love that edgy, grainy tone, even more so than Pulse. I know you did a brief review of the Wren&Cuff Box of War, but I’m wondering have you ever had a look at their Tall Font Russian? Apparently they did a ton of work on it to achieve that mighty green Muff sound. Judging by the sound clips it looks like an awesome pedal that lives up to the original & with some quality refinements. It’s supposed to be not as boomy/bassy sounding as the BOW, has more useful tone control in terms of controlling that “muddiness” & sounds smoother too to my ears. I’m just picturing how great would be to play C’numb & On the Turning Away on it :). So I think for me its probably going to be a choice between these 2 pedals. How do you view the Green Muffs? Do you still use yours? I remember you posting an awesome clip of it previously. As you said the Iron Bell is not a true Muff but has some of its genes. I’m just after achieving a nice authentic tone that’s also versatile.
    Many thanks for the help & for the superb work you do to keep Gilmourish a great source of inspiration! Cheers!

    [Thanks a lot for all your kind words, Tom! As my review says, the Iron Bell is kind of a mix between a RAT and a Muff. I think it's more versatile than most Muffs because it works nicely on most setups and you can use it for different tones and kinds of music. A Muff is a Muff. I haven't tried the Tall Font but based on the green Sovtel that I have, although it's a Bubble Font, it has a more top and slightly more gain than the BoW. I think the BoW is awesome but I still prefer the old green. - Bjorn]

  57. Alex says:

    Hi Björn,

    thanks for the review.
    What muff would be best for wall/final cut tones ?
    Just ordered a mojo hand colossus, being a total muff newbie.
    (except for I had an original pi in 1979…)
    Would that be appropriate ? Or better a eqd hoof or iron bell ??
    Sorry for all those questions,
    Thanx Alex

    [Depends on your guitar and amp but if you want pure authenticity then I'd go for the Electronic Orange Pig Hoof. Nothing beats that for the Animals and Wall tones in my opinion. The Colossus is perhaps better suited for Delicate and PULSE especially but you should be able to dial in some very cool 70s Muff tones as well :) - Bjorn]

  58. Alan says:

    Received my Iron Bell from the States after a 6 week wait. Absolutely brilliant pedal, and for anyone in two minds I can’t recommend it highly enough. I’m even tempted to order a 2nd as a back up. Your review is spot on Bjorn.

    [Congrats! - Bjorn]

  59. Alex says:

    Thanks for getting back quick !
    Take care,
    Alex

  60. Tom says:

    Thanks for getting back to me Bjorn & for your helpful advice! I know I’ll end up testing both these pedals very soon & will let you know how I went ok. I’m sure they’re both gonna be nice, would be super if I could grab both :)… In the meantime take care mate & I’ll be looking out for more awesome happenings here on Gilmourish! :).
    Cheers

    [Thanks Tom! - Bjorn]

  61. Andrew says:

    Powerful playing!
    Bjorn could you put backing track used for this video?

    [Thanks! It's only these short snippets but I'll post them soon. - Bjorn]

  62. Chris says:

    Hey Bjorn!
    Great site and reviews, always a pleasure checking in. I currently own a fuzz factory which is really versatile but touchy with its settings. Would the Iron Bell be duplicating too of the same tones or a good additional fuzz/muff/rat?
    Thanks!

    [Thanks Chris! I don't think the Fuzz Factory is anywhere near the Iron Bell tonewise. They're very different sounding. The Iron Bell is perhaps a bit more versatile capable of lots of different tones. - Bjorn]

  63. Nick Veekens says:

    Hi Bjorn,

    How would you compare the Iron bell with the Pig Hoof? Is the Pig Hoof still your favourite Muff clone or has the Iron Bell taken its place?

    Best regards,

    Nick

    [Two very different pedals serving different purposes. The Pig Hoof is an authentic clone of the so called violet ram's head, while the Iron Bell is sort of a mix between a Sovtek Big Muff and a RAT. I like both but for different stuff. The Iron Bell is perhaps the most versatile. - Bjorn]

  64. Zac says:

    hey Bjorn! it was my birthday today and i got the iron bell! so happy! sounds great but havnt been able to play it louder than my tiny vox practise amp yet… on the weekend ill put in into my peavey classic 30 and see what its got! you have a great website and everything on my board i go through on your site before even considering buying it! got a great tone now by splitting the signal from my boos ce5, output A goes into my peavey and output be goes through a nano misstress into a randall rg40, give a great pulse type sound like that! my friend is a metal head and was playing his boring compressed sound so i gave him my homemade black strat (i named it ‘dave’) and told him to play through my rig… hahaha you shouldve seen his face :)

    [Ha ha, great story! I can only imagine! Happy birthday and congrats with the Iron Bell! - Bjorn]

  65. harel says:

    hi Bjorn

    i want to get the sound of MC5 Kick Out the Jams Album
    I know they used Muff But I do not know what kind
    you think the Iron Bell For me?

    thx

    harel

    [I have no idea. You might want a fuzz or darker sounding Muff for that but the Iron Bell should be versatile enough. - Bjorn]

  66. harel says:

    Except the iron in what other things you used for the animals “rams head” ?

    best H.

    [You can pretty much use any Big Muff since they're all very similar. I prefer the Electronic Orange Pig Hoof, which is a great clone of the mid 70s violet ram's head. - Bjorn]

  67. harel says:

    i mean in your review animals “rams head” you use iron bell
    What are the other pedals you Used to achieve the sound?

    H.

    [In the clip? None. It's just the Iron Bell. - Bjorn]

  68. Mateusz says:

    Hi Bjorn!

    Yesterday, my Iron Bell arrived. With nice, limited edition, black/teal finish. This is my first real fuzz and it’s awesome. I think, I found my tone :-) Now, my signal flows like this: Guitar (DiMarzio Area Pickups) -> Iron Bell -> Deluxe Electric Mistress -> Dunlop Volume Pedal -> TC Nova Delay IB Modified -> Peavey Valveking 212

    Thank you very much for inspiration!!!

    [Congrats, Mateusz! - Bjorn]

  69. TonyMorente says:

    Bjørn, I’m very impressed about your page and also about your demos. Congratulations for such an amazing work and thank you for sharing your expertice and knowledge with us.

    I have a couple of questions related to the Iron Bell.

    I bought the pedal a few days go and I noticed that the “colour” knob doesn’t really change that much the characteristics of the sound, I mean from 01 to 05 I barely hear a difference or change, at 10 I do hear a little change, more bright, but is very sutil, is that normal? Or is it a combination with the volume, gain and tone that will make the “colour” knob a reason to exist? In the other side, I’m very curious about your modulations settings, I can’t get any similar result with my Boss ME 70 chorus. Is it a chorus or a uni vibe that you use on the demos for the Iron Bell? Will it better to buy a dedicated chorus for what I’m looking for?(which is to gilmourish my tone) :)

    Im using a MIM Strat with the ssl-5 ,cs69 and 50s and a line 6 spider lV.

    Tusen takk.

    [Thanks a lot for your kind words! The colour control works in combination with the other controls. It gets more pronounced when you increase the gain and adjusts the tone. It basically adds more mid range (clockwise), which is more noticeable with the gain around 12-3. Any lower, and the pedal gets pretty clean. Any higher, the gain gets very saturated and produces a lot of upper harmonics. This also depends on the voicing of your amp. I'm not that familiar with the ME70 but you should be able to get similar chorus tones as you hear on the clip. I'm using a Boss RT20. - BJorn]

  70. Dan Richter says:

    Hey Bjorn,

    Just wondering if you had tried the Mojo Hand Rook Royal OD. I just saw some Youtube vids and it sounds pretty awesome. If not, you should check it out. Not sure how Gimoury it is, but it is worth a listen.

    Thanx
    Dan Richter

    [Haven't tried the Royal yet but the single is great. Doubles nicely for the Tube Driver. - Bjorn]

  71. Bibz says:

    Hi Bjorn,
    Just wondering of the Iron Bell would be as suitable as the Colossus for Black Keys sounds?
    Thx

    [I would imagine so. It's not as brutal as the Colossus but there's plenty of gain and growl. - Bjorn]

  72. Al says:

    I have one of these Iron Bell pedals on the way from Prymaxe and a Laney cub 12r combo on the way also mostly in thanks to this demo. I really, really like the second and third tones you got in this demo. The second tone was thick and had authority, The third is probably what I’d call the tone from heaven. Man it sounds good. I know I won’t sound this good right away with it but it’s going to be be fun getting there. I like my Fender twin for playing time on with the bc109 analogman and a lot of the other songs my band plays that sound great on a fender but I agree it is a bright amp for stuff after dark side. I’m excited to try the Laney out, I had a friend offer me a used Reeves 50 custom PS and just can’t do that right now hoping the Cub will deliver for me. Also curious about the cub 8. Have yo utried one of those yet? looks like a cool little practice amp if it is Gilmourish or not I don’t know?

    [Hi Al! Thanks for your kind words :) The smaller Cubs doesn't have as much headroom as the 12 but they're cool practice amps anyway. Once you get the amp I recommend that you replace the tubes immediately. Try Ruby or JJs. It'll improove the tone a lot. - Bjorn]

  73. Keith says:

    I was surprised to see in the above post that you recommended Rubys, and JJs. While I’m sure you know that the Ruby 12AX7s are indeed JJs, their EL34, and 83′s are Shuguangs. That’s what Bill curentlly
    uses as his stock tubes in the REEVES Custom series, Ruby EL34 BHT, which all the tube sites rate very highly. I just thought it interesting that you mentioned anything other than JJs. I love my JJs, and when time comes for outies, I’m going to see if their is much difference between them and the Shuguangs. That may be the volume difference I spoke about in an earlier post about 3 o’clock not being nearly stage colume for me on my REEVES.
    PEACE, LOVE, and Gilmourish, Keith :)

    [Hmmm... I really need to be careful with what I say when you're around :) Well, there aren't many tube factories left and I'm far from being an expert but I find Ruby and JJ OK. I haven't experimented that much with different brands but you never know what you get these days - both in terms of quality and what brand you really get. Anyway, I haven't noticed any big difference between Ruby and JJ but there's a big difference between JJ EL34 and EL34L and I recommend that you try the EL34L for your Reeves. More headroom and a bit more balls, which I tyhink suits the otherwise clean and bright Webers. - Bjorn]

  74. Keith says:

    Thanks for the info on the L series, likewise, you may want to give the Ruby EL34BHT a try, that’s what Bill thinks sounds best in his amps, ither than NOS tubes he sells at a premium, and he switched to the BHT’s from the JJs, so just a suggestion. When I’m ready for tubes, I’ll try the JJ EL34L, and give you an idea about the difference, unless you try the Ruby,( Shuguangs), first!
    Peace, Keith

    [Deal :) - Bjorn]

  75. Ben says:

    Hey Bjorn,
    Great review as always.
    Just wanted your opinion on Muffish pedal choice. As many have said, they either wanted the musket or the iron bell. I also have come to this conclusion. I just don’t know which one will sound best on my setup ( I have no way of trying either out). My setup is as follows:
    MIM Strat w/humbucker>Drybell VM>sunface bc183>OCD(overdrive)>EHX deluxe EM>Boss DD-20(just added on Thursday. Awesome!!!)>Fender Blues jr./Hot Rod Deluxe (depending on location). It will be used for bedroom level/150 seat venue max. which makes me lean towards Iron Bell. My favorite Gilmour tone is probably Comfortably Numb/On the Turning Away. Sorry for the long-winded post.

    By the way, been listening to Airbag a lot lately. Your music blows my mind! Waiting someday for someone to make “Riisish.com”.
    Thanks again Bjorn :)

    [Thanks for your kind words, Ben! We're working on the third album now and plan on having it out by fall. Follow us on the Airbag Facebook page and you can also follow me and the recording of guitars for the album on my Facebook page. The Iron Bell is a great choice and especially for those brighter sounding Fenders. The Iron Bell and typical Sovtek pedals like the Colossus and Box of War evens out the harshness and produce great sustain. Note though that humbuckers will make a Big Muff sound not as open as with single coils. - Bjorn]

  76. Max says:

    Hey Bjorn,
    I just got an iron bell my self last week, and I’m thrilled with it. About four years ago I bought a EHX reissue Big Muff and was totally unimpressed with it. When I bought it I didn’t really know a lot about Muffs and I just knew that guys like Gilmour and Cobain used them. So I ended up being very disappointed with my Muff because it was so muddy and I couldn’t get a decent tone out of it unless I turned it up loud and risk upsetting the other people living in my apartment building. So basically that experience led to give up on Muffs all together. Then I started following your website several years ago and I discovered the very interesting history of the Muff and the ever expanding market of Muff Clones. The past two years I’ve been trying to find a Fuzz /Muff pedal that sounds good to me. As some one who lives in apartment it can be challenging to find a Fuzz that works well at bed room tones. Thanks for helping make sense of the complex creature that is the Big Muff and all the clones out there. I know that I love the Iron Bell and I have finally found an amazing muff that sounds great in my set up.

    [Glad to hear, Max! - Bjorn]

  77. Daniel says:

    Great review as usual.
    I also have one of these and though I like how the last setting sounds in your demo, with my unit setting the volume past 12 o’clock will boost the output to stadium levels! (compared with my Musket)
    Also, my Iron Bell seems to be overall pretty dark (again, compared with my Musket),
    did you find the same two things?

    [Not really. What amp and pickups do you have? - Bjorn]

  78. Daniel says:

    Amp: Laney cub head
    Pickups: SSL5 and CS69

    [Sounds familiar... Check out my Cub setup here. You'll find some general amp set up tips there as well. - Bjorn]

  79. KuroNeko says:

    Hi Bjorn,
    I found this pedal on the second hand market some months ago, before seeing your review and I am very pleased with it. I am such an ignorant with pedals that I didn’t realize I can consider it like some kind of Muff :D But it make sense (- well… of course !!!).
    Thanks for sharing your huge knowledge and congrats for the great playing ! I am considering adding a fuzz to get closer to some DSotM / WYWH chorus tones, do you agree ? Which Fuzz would you choose ? Should I place it before or after the I.B. in the set up ?
    Thanks and greetings from Paris !

    [The Iron Bell is capable of producing some nice fuzz tones for the early Floyd but if you want a more authentic tone then a fuzz is the way to go. Fuzz pedals aren't for every setup though. What kind of amp and guitar do you have? See the Buyer's Gear Guide fuzz for some tips. - Bjorn]

  80. KuroNeko says:

    Thanks Bjorn ! I already read your Fuzz Page and got the very good tips :-). Besides, I was wondering if my question was dull, as the Iron Bell is sometimes described as a fuzz O.O”
    I play a US Strat with DG pick-ups : I installed a loaded black pickguard with the Black Strat pick-ups set. My home set is a Blackstar HT5 (Head+Cab).

    [Fuzz is a term often used about anything that causes some distortion but really, the Iron Bell is a Muff and a fuzz is a fuzz :) - Bjorn]

  81. KuroNeko says:

    A good choice would be the Analogman Sun Face BC109 I guess.

    [Indeed. - Bjorn]

  82. KuroNeko says:

    Hi Bjorn and many thanks for making it clear in my poor mind :) BTW the AnalogMan BC 108 maybe a better choice than the BC 109 for a home setting, don’t you think ?
    PS : Lurking for the ideal/minimal set up, I just discovered your “Have a Cigar” solo on YT : well… WOW ! Non only it sounds incredibly good with the Throback Overdriveboost, but it is also incredibly well played… you’re a killer man ;)
    Greetings from Paris !

    [Thanks for your kind words! The 108 and 109 are very similar but it depends on the amp. The 108 is slightly less aggressive so I guess that's a better choice. - Bjorn]

  83. Chesire says:

    Great review as always Bjorn. I already have a BYOC Beaver Triangle version and its very good at some of these tones but the Iron Bell seems to offer more versatility. Is it a quiet pedal and how did it feel with the DG20s?

    Thank you for your help.

    [It's a very quiet pedal, relative to it being a Muff. It goes well with most pickups. - Bjorn]

  84. Luca says:

    Hi Bjorn!

    As Chesire, I own a BYOC triangle beaver that i think is too boomy for my taste. Do you think the Iron Bell goes well near a RAT o maybe you would consider another Muff, Musket perhaps? As Chesire I’m looking for much versatility!

    Cheers,
    Luca

    [The triangle is considered the most musical of the Muffs but it does sound very much like a.. erm... Muff, so it's perhaps not the most versatile gain pedal out there. The Iron Bell is great but perhaps a bit redundant next to a RAT. Not entirely identical but very similar. I think I'd rather go for a Musket or even something like the Hoof Fuzz for more versatile tones. - Bjorn]

  85. Luca says:

    Yes you’re right, the BYOC sounds really authentic (i noticed if i crank the gain knob it opens to the fuzz territory well) and I can play most of the Floyd stuff very close to the records with your help! The problem is the reliability of the footswitch when I play with the band and the boomyness, so sometimes I can’t hear what I’m doing lost in the mix. I like the tone of the muff, but i’m looking something much useful in the rearsal room!

    Thanks!

    Luca

    [Then you should get one with more gain and mids, like the Musket. - Bjorn]

  86. Pete says:

    I ordered one based on this review. I could not be any happier with the pedal. I’ve gotten so many different tones out of this, that I’m considering getting another one just so I don’t have to fiddle with knobs between songs.
    Thanks, Bjorn!
    A review well done.

    [Great sounding pedal indeed! - Bjorn]

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