AnalogMan SunFace BC109 review

February 4th 2013 | Posted in Reviews | 63 Comments

AnalogMan SunFace BC109

The SunFace has long been my favourite fuzz pedal. The BC108 nails all those classic silicon tones and more. Recently, AnalogMan released the BC109 version – a tribute to David Gilmour’s Dark Side of the Moon tones. Here’s my review.

At the time when David Gilmour joined Pink Floyd, in early 1968, guitarists had only a very few pedals to choose from. The Fuzz Face was a staple in many setups and Gilmour, being inspired by Jimi Hendrix and continuing Syd’s legacy, employed the germanium model alongside a wah and the Binson Echorec. By 1971, he’d swapped the germanium for the silicon transistor Fuzz Face.

The SunFace BC109 is housed in a MXR-sized chassis with the familiar AnalogMan gold colouring and a nice Floyd-ish graphic (done with taste and not the obvious references). In addition to the usual volume and gain controls, the SunFace also feature an internal bias or gain trimmer, although you rarely need this for silicon circuits. The pedal feature true bypass switching but appropriately lack a led and power input. Vintage circuit fuzz pedals are best operated with carbon 9V batteries.

Fuzz pedals aren’t for everybody. They can sound horrible on the wrong setup and it requires some time getting to know their nature and behaviour. In some cases, you’re better off with a Big Muff or a much easier to use distortion, like the RAT or similar. However, a fuzz in its right element is perhaps one the most dynamic and versatile pedals you can place on a pedal board.

Compared to the BC108, that’s featured in most silicon transistor fuzz pedals, the BC109 has a bit more of everything. More gain and dirt, lower end and crunchy top. Some might find it hard to tame and a bit too noisy but after some time fiddling with the controls and the guitar volume, you’ll recognize all the sweet harmonics and its rich character.

My favourite setting is the volume at about 75% and the gain at full, slightly rolled back to avoid those nasty oscillations. I also prefer pairing it up with a transparent booster, like the Colorsound Powerboost. Not necessarily for more gain but for a bit tighter lower end and a more focused and smoother top.

With the guitar volume at 10 you’re right in the Pompeii/Dark Side territory. The SunFace is breathing fire and producing an insane sustain and that familiar saw-like fuzz. Rolling the guitar volume down to 8-9 rolls off the top and adds a bit of compression. Rolling down further to about 5-6 will produce a smooth and crisp overdrive dead on David’s tones from Obscured by Clouds and songs like Childhood’s End, Mudmen etc.

If you prefer your fuzz nice and clean, then you might want to check out a germanium model or perhaps even a BC108. If you’re up for taming a wild horse and get a breeze in your hair, then I highly recommend the SunFace BC109! It’s a stayer on my board! Check out AnalogMan.Com for more details.

The SunFace BC109 was tested on both a Laney Cub 15w stack and a Reeves Custom 50, using Stratocaster with a Seymour Duncan SSL5 bridge pickup.

63 comments so far

  1. Matthias says:

    VERY GREAT PLAYING !! STILL WAITING FOR MY IRON BELL FROM PRYMAXE, BUT THIS COULD BE NEXT… !! THANKS FOR SHARING !!

    [Thanks! - Bjorn]

  2. Matteo says:

    This pedal is simply awesome, I’ve got a JHF1 Hendrix Fuzz Face, but this one is really wilder and dirtier, not so distant from a Muff even preserving evidently features of a Fuzz unit!

    [This one's considerably wilder than the JHF but also more dynamic and open sounding. Add a transparent booster and a Mistress and it could easily double for a Muff on the Animals and Wall tones. - Bjorn]

  3. Alex says:

    Great job with the demo! I think it’d be pretty cool to do a direct comparison video of BC108 and BC109. I’m torn between the two because my favourite Gilmour tone of all time is DSOTM and Live at Pompeii and since he used a BC108 Fuzz Face, I’m leaning towards the BC108 but BC109 sounds killer too. If I really wanna nail his fuzz tone in those eras, should I get the BC108 or the BC109?

    [It's not a huge difference. Depends on your guitar, amp and general setup. In some cases the 108 will sound better and in other, the 109... or you might not notice a difference.- Bjorn]

  4. Kane says:

    That’s a great review and what a fantastic tone your getting. i’m glad you did echoes its my favorite song and you play it great. i recently bought a fulltone 70 just to play echoes from pompeii, but i struggle getting the tone right i’m using a laney cub/bd-2(keeley) dmm and a 57 strat with 69 pickup would you recommend me buying one of these instead? or maybe i just need to fiddle with my settings more? maybe i’ll try using the ssl-5 pickup like you

    [Thanks! I suspect the BD2 is your problem. If it's not modded for true bypass its buffer will mess up the fuzz. Try running the fuzz straight into the amp or get a true bypass booster like the ThroBak Overdriveboost or TC Spark Booster. - Bjorn]

  5. Andrew says:

    THX!!!! inspiring playing as usual!
    ps i go to BC108 analogman for Pompei sounds )

    [Thanks! - Bjorn]

  6. Robert Farrer says:

    That sounds amazing I actually couldn’t stop laughing at how good this beast sounds. It gives the impression like its going to shatter the windows in your house its that loud but nice and smooth which is refreshing as I always think they are a bit wild and gritty. To my untrained ear anyway. If i can ever justify another fuzz pedal I have a candidate.

    Great effort as usual really enjoy these reviews

    Bob

    [Thanks Bob! I had to push the Laney real hard this time... Fuzz pedals doesn't sound all that good on low volume... My neighbours wasn't happy... :) - Bjorn]

  7. Keven says:

    Next purchase ;) hey next time could you demo one of Wren and cuff muff exact replicas? Maybe a trio would be Nice ;)

    [Thanks for the tip :) - Bjorn]

  8. Pasqual says:

    Hi there Björn, as always a great review. I realy like the sound you manage to get out of it. Very transparant. I know it depends a lot on which gear has been used but it also depends on the “fingers” which are used. I’ll keep this one in mind! Thanx and kind regards, Pasqual.

    [Thanks! - Bjorn]

  9. Euan says:

    Hi Bjorn. I know there is a dark art to recording but why is your mic slightly off center?

    [Usually sounds better that way. Depends on the amp, mic and what tones you want but placing it dead center often sound harsh and too bright. - Bjorn]

  10. Dave A says:

    And now the bit I love LOL LOL LOL.Thats more of the old Bjorn reviews,we get to see you play.Many thanks Bjorn amazing review mate .

    Thanks again.

    [Thanks Dave! Hope all is well :) - Bjorn]

  11. Tom B says:

    Very nice Bjorn!!
    Would it be right to say because of the extra bottom and gain that the BC109 is easier to play than the BC108? Any chance of an AB vid between the BC108 and BC109? Great work as always, and as per usual something else to add to the wish list!!

    Thanks Bjorn!!

    [Thanks! The tighter lower end makes the 109 a bit more focused and perhaps easier to set up on different amps than the 108 but it's really not a huge difference and I guess it's a bit of personal preference as well. - Bjorn]

  12. james says:

    as ever great review and what a great sound. I would love to have this pedal but with such a simple circuit I would prefer the fun of building it myself. Going to try and source the parts.

    [Thanks! Shouldn't be too hard to make one your self if you got the right parts and know your way around a soldering iron :) - Bjorn]

  13. Scott says:

    Bjorn,

    Fantastic demo. If I did not know better, I thought I was listening to the sound from Live at Pompeii. I like better than the BC108.

    [Thanks a lot Scott! - Bjorn]

  14. lukas says:

    I just f…ing love to see you play on reviews, it gives me a lot, realy helpful, in some cases i couldn’t figure out how some bits are played, now i know so thanks again and again…

    [Thanks, Lukas! - Bjorn]

  15. Alan Day says:

    I build quite a few of my own pedals and can also vouch for the BC107 in a Fuzz Face. Choice of transistors is CRITICAL in Fuzz and Muff pedals. The A, B and C suffix also defines the GAIN range – A is lower and C is higher. The best way to get EXACTLY what you want is to have your Fuzz fitted with Transistor sockets – you can then swop and change to your hearts delight. I recently did a custom order that ended up with a 2n5598 (as used in Muffs) with a BC107 the resulting combination was chosen to be very aggressive but also low noise – (yes we were going for a Fultone sound). Very nice demo Bjorn – nailed it again. A

    [Thanks for the input, Alan! - Bjorn]

  16. Gabe says:

    Thanks again Bjorn, allows me to follow up my last question. If I order the 109 and add the power jack option as well as the on/off volume pot, will anything change even if I’m just using a battery? Also, have you tried it with a power supply? Now to figure out what the sundial knob does….

    [I think you should ask AnalogMan about that... I general, using a power adapter on vintage circuit fuzz will change the tone. - Bjorn]

  17. Glenn says:

    Very nice! Analogman makes some of the best stuff around. And it looks like Bjorn has grown some period-correct facial hair to commemorate his wonderful Gilmourish demo…

    [Ha ha... thought that would be fitting :) - Bjorn]

  18. Scooter says:

    Wow Bjorn! Awesome playing and sound as always!! Your reviews are spot on as too!( I love the Iron Bell)
    Are you able to get these tones with a EQ Hoof Fuzz also? What would be the difference in tone of the 2 pedals?

    [Thanks! I tried to get a fuzz tone on the Hoof Fuzz clip review. Check it out. I guess you could tweak it even further with an EQ but the Hoof Fuzz is a Big Muff and its character is very different compared to a fuzz. A much more saturated tone and lower end. - Bjorn]

  19. Keith says:

    Hey Bjorn, off topic, but I wanted to find out if you’ve received your Echorec yet? Anyone out there get one yet? I’m desperate to know the scoop on the promising looking pedal, and whether it’s everything Catlinbread promises it too be. Got serious GAS for a great tape echo, and can’t wait much longer. They aren’t available to try, so I’m depending on others impression, or I may just have to get the Strymon!
    Thanks, peace be with you all, and all you love, Keith

    [Haven't gotten it yet and I'm about to give up waiting... might as well order one from PGS. - Bjorn]

  20. Keith says:

    Wow, for some reason the videos of your reviews don’t work well on my phone, but I figured out I could just pop over to YouTube, where I have one subscription, your videos, and the latest review pops right up. So, I got my first look at the video for the BC -109 this morning. Wonderful version of Echoes, my favorite Pink Floyd, if not my favorite song period. I notice your whammy bar stays in place really well, and I assume you use the Callaham Vintage S bridge,(another product made here in Virginia!) Did you go for his virtual pop in bar? I got the option on mine, and you pop it in, and even though it has threads, it stays easily where you want it by merely popping it into place, no turning in of the threaded portion needed. For all who go for the Callaham, be sure to speak with him about your neck width. The standard Vintage S dies not fit Vintage Strats correctly, it positions the E strings too close to the edge of the neck because the Vintage Strat neck is a little narrower than the newer strats. I believe the Vintage neck takes a 2 7/32? , but check with Callaham, they’re extremely helpful, and you definitely don’t want to get the wrong size, it makes playing, and doing reverse bends in the 1st string nearly impossible! Great review, Great pedal, Exceptional playing as usual, my fine fingered friend.
    Peace, Love, and all the other things I normally go on about! Gilmourish is the best site of any kind on the web, and I live to wake up to see what I’ll learn each morning! KEITH

    [Thanks Keith! Yeah, Echoes is definitely one of my fav songs too! I think the arm is a pop in but I never get it to work properly so I screw them in and use springs to keep them in place. - Bjorn]

  21. Keith says:

    Gas,Gas,Gas, I’m sitting in the floor at Sam Ash, where they just gave me all but $30 back for a JH-F1 I’ve had almost a year, but had hardly touched, and bought the extremely better sounding, and board friendly JH-M1, and a Voodoo Power plus2. The 70th anniversary Fuzz Face some say is the exact same as the JH-F1, maybe the board is, I don’t know, but the taper of the pots is totally different, the led is great, and it’s much, much quieter. It IMHO is a great step above the JH-F1, and won’t take up half my board! That, and a new GCB95 CRY BABY, and I’m a UniVibe away from a complete board, and my new board will be wired, and cranked by mid week next week!
    Peace all, this new Fuzz Face is incredible!!! KC

    [Interesting... need to check out those Hendrix anniversaries. - Bjorn]

  22. Jae says:

    Great playing Bjorn! I built a BC-109 Fuzz Face a couple of years ago and I found it to be everything you said and more. An extra bonus is how great this unit sounds with a Les Paul in front of it. Instant early Billy Gibbons, it really is a fun pedal to have on your board.

    Jae

    [Indeed! - Bjorn]

  23. Mike says:

    That some fantastic playing Bjorn…I’m speechless.

    I wanted to ask you, how well does the BC109 clean-up compared to the BC108 Sun Face? I’ve never owned a fuzz face type pedal and I’m hoping to get just one (maybe a Ge later on), which will probably be a Sun Face, but I’m pretty torn between the two silicon versions – as of now :P

    [Thanks Mike! Depends on how hot your pickups are but there's not much difference between the two. Neither cleans up as well as a germanium. You can get some nice overdrivetones but they sound quite thin and harsh if you roll back the guitar volume below 5. - Bjorn]

  24. Brad says:

    Hi Bjorn,

    Slightly off topic, but in your video you mention the Electronic Orange Banana Boost. I haven’t heard your take on how it is in general as a CPB clone. How does it compare? I have a reissue CPB but always on the lookout for something that will do the same but with modern conveniences. Even your previous review to the Throbak claimed that it was one of the best, but still didn’t REALLY nail the CPB.

    Many thanks!
    Brad

    [None of the clones I've tried have managed to capture the mojo of the CPB. Perhaps I'm blinded by its colour and legend... I don't know :) The ThroBak is perhaps the closest. The Banana sounds slightly darker and it has a milder breakup. Very nice clean booster, which is why I use it in the fx loop. - Bjorn]

  25. Fernando says:

    Hey Bjorn,

    Nice play for a nice pedal!

    Off-topic: I’ve sent you a new backing track. Please report me any issues.

    Regards.

    [Thanks! I've received the track... too swamped with e-mails... sorry. I'll get back to you soon :) - Bjorn]

  26. James Cameron says:

    talk about nailing the tone , WOW! I’d like to here this paired with the catlinbread echo. Playing was well done as usual Bjorn, thanks for the demo.

    [Thanks! - Bjorn]

  27. Keith says:

    I know I have quite a few posts in moderation, but since this is a fuzz thread, I had to tell this quick story. I just bought the 70th Anniversary Hendrix FF at Sam Ash a few days ago, but someone had lost the paperwork that was in the box. My salesfriend told me to take it home to get used to it and he’d get me another one, as there was a certificate with it. I just picked it up, and not realizing how limited the run is, was happily surprised that I have # 1012 of 2300. Sure to be a collectable! When Bjorn posts my comments about the pedal, you’ll see how I think it measures up to the JH-F1. For now I’ll just say that you should try to get this pedal!
    Peace all, Keith

  28. David says:

    Mine is on order!

  29. 100JH says:

    Never tried the AM 109 but love my Skreddy Lunar Module! Perfect for me!

    http://www.kitrae.net/music/Images_Secret_Music_Page/SKREDDY_LUNAR_MODULEsm.jpg

  30. Keith says:

    James Cameron,(posted above) spoke of wishing to hear it paired with the new Echorec. So James, do you have the Caitlinbread? Does anyone have one? I want to know if it’s even close to what they claim, but can’t find anyone who has one! Bjorn, I think everyone is waiting for your review before buying the Echorec, I wonder if Caitlinbread realizes how many units they’d sell if they got one to you? Maybe they don’t want you to review it, they may be afraid you won’t like it. It’s that Jedi master in you! hehe.
    Someone tell us about the Echorec! PLEASE! K C

    [Ha ha, there are some very nice reviews on YouTube already so I doubt they even care. - Bjorn]

  31. Alex says:

    At least I can tell that of all the digital delays out there, the CB Echorec is the one that comes closest to the Binson. The Effectrode might be even closer once it is out. But for now, just take the Catalinbread, add a BC108 or 109 fuzz and you are right on the dark side of Pompeii. Promised! :)

  32. Steve says:

    Keith – I have the Catalinbread Echorec and to my ears it IS everything Catalinbread is claiming. Don’t have a real echorec to compare to . . . but it’s glorious good fun to play with and has the “echoes in space” sound if you know what I mean. The multi-taps are hypnotic and inspiring. This link has lots of good samples and info, including a certain rendition of the Echoes solo played really badly by someone who shall remain nameless!

    http://www.thegearpage.net/board/showthread.php?t=1180017&highlight=catalinbread+echorec

  33. Steve says:

    p.s. my only “quibble” with the Echorec is that the first repeat is much louder than your typical generic delay – no matter the settings. I don’t think this is a flaw – I think it’s essential to the “active” and percussive nature of the Echorec delay – i.e. a delay that’s more like a second instrument that wants to jam along with you and build on what you’re doing, rather than just passively repeating what your are doing but softer. But that percussive first-repeat can make fast-playing passages a little too busy. Not really an issue, though, as there are plenty of good and cheap regular delays when you don’t want the percussive thing . . .

  34. Nick says:

    Bjorn, what an awesome sounding video!!!!! The BC109 has been on my wish list for a while and this video seals the deal for me. I did purchase the CB Echorec and it sounds fantastic, but I am just slowly starting to experiment with all of it’s capabilities. Both buffer and true bypass sound amazing and both are very dynamic. You can go from lush space to percussive attack by how you pick and strum. The one downside to many is the mix knob. It seems as if the dry signal cuts out when the delay gets wet around 2-3 o’clock. Most delays keep the dry signal and mix the wet into it, where as the CB Echorec is either one or the other. The only way that I have gotten around this was to use the internal boost to give more signal. This provides more attack to the delay(Run Like Hell) and brings more of the dry signal to the mix. Without boosting the internal trim, I had to use a clean boost to get the delays Wall worthy. But after the internal boost I have no problems. The CB Echorec definitely nails those early Floyd delays but can be tricky for later delays found in The Wall because of the mix knob or lack of. Other than the mix knob, the delay times can be a little difficult to dial in because of the range of delay (it would be awesome if the manufactures would give users an indicator around the delay knob to more accurately dial in times). It still is an extremely versatile pedal and I will be keeping it for a long long time. As for now, it looks as though I will bitten with the BC109 fever.

    [Thanks for your kind words and for the info! - Bjorn]

  35. Keith says:

    Thanks Steve, you’re the first person I’ve been abke to find who actually has the pedal. The issue you spoke of was in a Gear Page thread, and there was a tech from a fairly well known company who said that you could kill that louder initial note, or original chord by not using 3 & 4 I think, and there was also a setting on one of the inside pots, I think? That kills that problem. I can’t reneber verbatim, so don’t oay attention to my details, but I found the post in a related thread to the liknk you posted. I couldn’t find yiur echoes clip. If you don’t mind not being anonymous, could you tell me your screen name, as when I clicked your link, it took me to the beginning of an Echorec thread, and the echoes clip was nowhere to be found. But mainly I wanted to make you aware that there is a way to kill that first note volume issue, but it may take a few minutes on The Gear Page to find the post! Sirry, I should have bookmarked it, but my computer skills are worse than my typing!
    Peace, Keith

  36. Keith says:

    Not using 3&4, is there anyway to edit your posts after you hit submit? That’s when I always find my many typos!

    [Not with this theme at least... Sorry. - Bjorn]

  37. sebastien says:

    Hello Bjorn,

    In the BC 109 video, I’d like to know what input you did choose on your laney Cub head, between 1 W and 15 W ?
    As you put the electronic orange banana boost in the effect loop, where you using the 1 W input?

    Did you have to crank the amp that time? I remember you telling you had to crank the amp to make a fuzz face sound correctly… If yes what where your settings on the Cub Head? That would help!!

    Best regards,

    Sebastien

    [I used the 1w with the gain at point 1 and the master volume at 2 o'clock. All the EQs were set more or less at noon. Very clean and warm sounding. The Booster in the FX loop adds to the warmth and punchyness of the tone. - Bjorn]

  38. sebastien says:

    Bjorn, I forgot to ask: Do you still have the banana boost in the effect loop when using the 1 W input at home?

    If yes I should try it whith my BD 2 keeley mod or my throbak overdrive boost.

    What kind of settings would you recommend? Do I have to use them for as slight boost ? Clean Boost?

    Thanks again for your daily work on this website! Much appreciated!

    [Yes, I do. It's a dead clean booster and placing it in the loop compensates for some of the warmth and punch you get when you crank the power stage with high volume. I don't think the BD2 is clean enough but try it. Another great booster is the TC Spark Booster. - Bjorn]

  39. Steve says:

    Hi, Keith. My Echoes sample is at:

    http://soundcloud.com/sschibuola/echoes-solo-echorec

    Cheers for the reference – I went back and read those Gear Page posts. There’s ways to mitigate the loud/percussive nature of the first repeat – using a simpler program (e.g. mode 1), adjusting the tone and mix . . . but to my ear it is such a key ingredient to the Echorec magic formula – and CB was so faithful to the original – that you can’t “kill” it completely. Take a look at this clip, where the first repeats are using an old Teac R-to-R as a tape delay, second set are the Echorec. ER is in Mode 1/single-head, and they are both set for the same mix, and for 4 repeats.

    http://soundcloud.com/sschibuola/echorec-reference-clip

    You don’t even have to listen to the clip – just look at the waveform and see how much bigger the first repeat on the Echorec is – the other repeats are pretty much the same as the tape delay. It’s just that first one.

    As a practical matter . . . it’s really not an issue as I’ve said. I find that as I get more comfortable with the pedal, it’s less of an issue all the time even when I just want a simple passive delay.

    P.S Bjorn . . . extended apologies for “hijacking” this BC 109 thread a little!

    [Not at all! Thanks for sharing! - Bjorn]

  40. Euan says:

    Great clip. Love echoes. I have a bc108 and use it with the colour sound boost. Works great. Tried it with a tube driver and don’t think it works so well. Tube driver is too dark to my ears for that fuzz

    Slightly off topic. I have a Callahan trem I’m going to fit to my NOS DG strat. Does anyone know how David has his trem set? How many steps up and down he can whammy. I’ve watched lots of clips on set ups for trems online so i am now slightly lost in how to do it. If I should be doing it at all.

    Thanks

    [His plate is flush with the body so he can't drag it up. Use three springs in the back and adjust the claw and the six bridge plate screws accordingly for a smooth operation. - Bjorn]

  41. Keith says:

    @Steve, that thing definitely captures the Binson sound. I cannot get my Carbon copy to get anywhere near that sound, although I may have a dud CC, it just doesn’t seem that the repeats are nearly as loud as they should be, and no matter how much I turn the dry/effect knob clockwise, it just doesn’t cut through. But that is probably the way I’m going to go. The Strymon is a great delay, but the Echorec is, well, an Echorec, and is designed to sound like the machine DG has been using corever, and it sounds like they got very close. Thanks for the clip, it’s the first I’ve heard that doesn’t have too much modulation, and that was a big concern. I think you’ve nade up my mind, I’m calling CB today. Anyone need a Carbon Copy,LOL
    THANKS, KEITH

  42. Mitch says:

    Hey Bjorn,

    Just wanted to say thanks regarding your recommendation on the Reeves Custom 30, sounds incredible! So fat and warm! A rich tone indeed. Also very impressed with the power scaling!

    [Glad you're happy with it! - Bjorn]

  43. Keith says:

    Just sent Catalinbread an email to call me when they open this morning, so I can pull the trigger. Their website,( as well as several others.) no longer says “out of stock”, so I would assume they are somewhat caught up. I hope so, Steve’s clip, as well as the many others I’ve heard since yesterday makes me think it’s as close to a real tape unit as you’ll get for $229.00! Newsflash, they are also getting ready to come out with an echo unit modeled on the original, the Echoplex! Things that make you go Hmm. Dammit Bjorn, I can’t afford this! You gave me the GAS, and I’ve evidently learned to DRIVE! HAHA!
    Peace Y’all, KC

    [Lol! - Bjorn]

  44. Jeff says:

    Any thoughts on how this latest 109 fuzz compares to the Skreddy Lunar Module Deluxe ? Neither are “budget” pedals by any means, and I’m sure with either your getting your monies worth, but, from much of what I’ve read, the LMMD was crafted to really nail the Darkside tones, and with the additional controls for more tonal shaping, it seems like it would be a tough act to match….

    [The Lunar has a more saturated tone I think. Similar to what you get from pairing a fuzz with the Colorsound Powerboost, which David did back in the mid 70s. The SunFace has a purer fuzz tone but the Lunar might work better on practice and smaller setups. - Bjorn]

  45. MIck says:

    Hi! Just wanted to ask do you place colorsound PB before or after the fuzz to get that dark side tones?

    [After :) - Bjorn]

  46. Keith says:

    YES!!!!! THANK YOU BJORN, and your server! I once again have something to do between 4:30 am, and work. I’ve had a few very boring mornings. The God’s are smiling on Gilmourish.com, and the man behind the greatest site on the web, bar none, Bjorn Riis. Happiness is a good day, and a good day for the last year starts with a visit to Gilmourish, glad you worked it out.
    Thanks for everything, Keith

    [Thanks Keith! I was quite nervous for a few days myself :) - Bjorn]

  47. T.Quay Williams says:

    Bjorn,

    Based on your article I sent my BC108 back to Analogman Mike who switched the parts for 109′s for $40 plus shipping. It is like the 108 but distincly sharper and more alive! The best of the 108 comes forward (though more floor noise too) for those amazing howling fuzz tones. I’d recommend anyone to have the transistors switched if you already own a BC108 or buy a 109 and rev up the chain saw! Lots of fun,
    Best to all

  48. Keith says:

    Ah yes, the joys of being a heating, and A/C contractor. While installing a replacement furnace in an apartment yesterday, I was cutting a piece of sheet metal, when my left, ( fretting hand!) slipped from the shears, and the bottom side of the middle joint hit a very jagged piece of metal. I’m extremely lucky it didn’t cut the tendon in half, as I could see it, and the bone. (SORRY IF THIS GROSSES ANYONE OUT!). It cut from the left of the knuckle, to just shy of the right of the knuckle. It coukd have used a few stiches, but I needed to finish, so so toilet tissuetissue, ( about half a roll!), stopped the river of blood, and I finished my job. Looks like I’ll need lessons fron Django for a couple of weeks. I’m amazed that it didn’t cut the tendon, cause it definitely hit the bone. I can move it just fine, although every time I do, it starts bleeding again. Ah, I love my job, NOT! Oh yeah, failed to mention it was my pinky finger!
    KEITH

    [Ohhh... That must have hurt! But you're lucky it wasn't worse. Hope it heals soon :) - Bjorn]

  49. Jake says:

    Just bought mine a couple days! So pumped, now i have to save up some money now to buy the Laney Cub I am looking forward to getting! Great review and I can’t wait to get the BC109!!!

    Jake

    [Congrats! - Bjorn]

  50. Frails says:

    Well done Bjorn! Anyone who’s ever wanted a Cornish G-2 but either can’t afford it or justify it’s price tag, this clip is for you. Like WOW! I always veer towards Muffs cuz I love Fuzz but hate how FF’s lack low end. This one sounds waaaaay different.

    [Indeed. It's quite different from the usual silicons. Much more lower end and harmonics. Not as much mid range and saturation as the G2 though but definitely in the same area. - Bjorn]

  51. T.Quay Williams says:

    Bjorn,

    I wrote that I bought a Laney Cub12R stack like yours and am curious why you put pedals in the effects loop instead of just plugging them in a row. Does it make that effect more dominant? I will experiment on my own but tell me what you think.
    Best,
    T.Quay

    [If you ask me, I never place effects in the loop. I do, however, often place a transparent clean booster in the loop of the CUB. This to boost the output stage, which is needed on low volume levels. It makes the amp sound bit bit warmer and punchier. The effectsloop is meant to be used if you utilize the gain from the amp as a part of your tones. Most guitarists wants modulations and delays after the gain. In terms of recreating Gilmour's tones, you want the amp as clean as possible and the loop will be redundant. - Bjorn]

  52. Jon Anders Bæverfjord says:

    Great review. What about the Throbak ODB in the FX loop? Do you have a pinpoint for a setting which will give more headroom?

    Cheers,
    Jon Anders

    [The ThroBak works nicely. The settings depends on the amp but I'd keep the EQ on the pedal neutral and the gain all the way down. - Bjorn]

  53. Jon Anders Bæverfjord says:

    This fuzz unit is both wild and dirty. Spot on DSOTM for sure, and a stayer on my board as well. Notably this unit is quite less noisy compared to e.g the Genuine Pig Face from Electronic Orange. Highly recommended.

    Cheers,
    Jon Anders

  54. ed says:

    I love the sound of the early MJM london fuzz(germanium). The newer ones are still great but there’s something special about the very early made ones. I regret selling mine but I do have a hendrix fuzz face that was modded by Jeorge Tripps. Anyhow I can’t wait for the next buyer gear guides. I miss your favorite settings for achieving wonderful rotary tones with the electric mistress! Hopefully you can write a review of the providence final booster too! haha jk (you put so much hard work and passion to this website. It truly shows man!)

    [Thanks Ed! I'll have a few more Gear Guides up soon :) - Bjorn]

  55. Mike says:

    Hello Bjorn!

    Thanks so very much for your website and your playing on youtube, love both!

    Actually, on the strength of your youtube clip and review plus comparing all the different variants of the Analogman Sunface, I’ve just gone ahead today and ordered a Sunfacec BC-109!!

    I’ll never forget the first time I watched Pink Floyd at Pompei, it was around about ’83-’84 and I was just 16-17..Even back then, the music seemed from a very different ealier era (I grew up listening to Electro), but I was transfixed by Dave Gilmour’s solo on Echoes. It opened up a whole new world of music for me and it wasn’t long after that I ordered a Strat copy from Manchester guitar builder, Gordon Whittam (He was one half of Gordon Smith guitars and I still have this Strat today).

    Getting a decent guitar tone has taken me absolute years and years and it only recently that I am truly happy with my setup:

    Gordy Strat->Rothwell Love Squeeze Compressor->Crybaby->Vintage ’79 MXR Distortion+->EHX POG 2->Boss Chorus CE3->Boss BF 2 Flanger->Vintage MXR Phase 100->Boss TR-2 Tremolo->Boss DD2 Delay->Boss RDD-10 Delay->Boss RDD-20 Delay->Alesis Nanoverb 2->Korg NGT-1 Noise Gate->Fender Hotrod Deluxe (or Vox AC15C1, I have both amps)

    Question: Where would you put the Sunface BC-109 in the chain and also I don’t think I need a power booster pedal?

    All the very best and thanks again!

    Mike

    [Hi Mike! Thanks for your kind words and for sharing your story! I'd place the fuzz first in the chain, between the guitar and the Squeeze. A transparent booster, like the Colorsound Powerboost, ThroBak Overdriveboost or TC Spark Booster is a great tool in getting a bit more bite and life from your amp and for boosting the fuzz. - Bjorn]

  56. Keith says:

    Hey Bjorn, I’ve been having some issues with cleaning up the Hendrix Tribute FF with my guitar volume, and enailed several builders to figure it out. There are two internal trimpots on the top of the board, and since both are all the way down, I’m led to believe they forgot to adjust them. I have my JH-F1 back, and so I’m covered, but the real reason for this post, and something that floored me was, while searching the forums about the pots, I found a post from Mike @ Abalogman, saying how much he liked the Hendrix reissue. In fact he said he was setting up his bc-108′s more like these Dunlop fuzzes since playing with one. He didn’t clarify whether he was talking about the F1, or new M1, but I should have an answer from him in a couple of days. I’m hoping he was talking about the trbute, and will thus have a working knowledge of the pedal, and be able to tell me if I can adjust the trimpots to cure the volume attenuation issue. I thought you might find it interesting that he thought so much of a inexpensive fuzz pedal. If he’s talking about the tribute, ut would confirm Dunlops assertion that it is the exact same circuit as the original D-A Si Fuzz Face! I’ll let you know what he says.
    Peace, Postmaster K

    [That's interesting! Let me know if you get a reply. - Bjorn]

  57. Al says:

    My BC109 sunface just showed up yesterday and I have been playing it through my 65′ twin reverb reissue this evening a lot. Really has more bite than my BC108 with sundial. I did not get a sundial on my 109 model and did not know if I would benefit from having it on there or not. So far I’m really loving the pedal and can’t decide if I like the 108 or 109 model the most, but there could be a tougher decision to have to make : ) Will have to let my band decide tomorrow. Will drop it on the time solo and see if they say anything. Also had a Throbak overdrive booster show up today and it has been crazy in my house tonight. My nearest neighbor is not too close but he is a policeman so hopefully he likes my tastes in music.
    I love this site and it has saved me a lot of trouble and even though it has cost me some serious money buying the gear I see here the reviews are honest and unbiased and the gear delivers as recommended. All the years ago that I gave up on getting these tones from the bad advice others had given me I wish I had known or this place had been around. Thanks again for helping me get my tone where it needed to be to match my playing.

    [Thanks a lot for your kind words, Al! Congrats on your new pedal! - Bjorn]

  58. Tom B says:

    Ok, watched this video too many times!
    This and the 74 Tone tutorial (awesome!!)

    Pulled the plug on one of these last night… This is all your fault Bjorn!
    How long do they take to build? Can’t wait to get it.

    [Hey! Don't shoot the messenger LOL! I'm sure Mike will deliver fast. - Bjorn]

  59. Tom B says:

    Mine arrived today! Wow it sounds good!Worth the wait!!

    Did you adjust the blue internal trimpot as well on yours?
    I haven’t yet but don’t want to risk damaging it – the instructions say not to touch it…

    [Congrats! No, haven't touched it. - Bjorn]

  60. Brad Roller says:

    Hmmm…Idk which one to choose…so Gilmour never used a bc-109? Is that true cause from what I have read he used a bc-108 but like you said you can’t really hear much of a difference in the two anyhow. It would just be a personal taste in which one. Which one nails Pompeii better in your opinion? Because honestly man, I can’t friggin tell lol I play through a blues Jr most of the time, but Im going to get a fender hot rod deluxe lll 40 watt soon so which would be best in your opinion? btw I seen on analogmans site that Gilmour and Guy both used sunfaces during rehearsals. It had pictures of them using them. Did you see that? Anyway, thank you for your time buddy! God Bless!

    Brad

    [Hi Brad! Sorry for my late reply. Yeah, I saw the pictures. Don't think David used one for the shows though. He had a triangle Big Muff laying on top of the board for Echoes. Guy did use one. There's not a big difference between the 109 and 108 and it also depends on your guitar and amp. The 109 has a bit more gain but the 108 nails the Pompeii tones perfectly. I haven't seen any confirmed reports on whether David used a 109 or not but he definitely used 108s. - Bjorn]

  61. Brad Roller says:

    Well thank you good sir! I wanted to use a fuzz for my own tones and i wanted that pompeii tone for the job. I went with the 108. Thanks for your help! :) you tha man! haha

    [Cheers, Brad :) - Bjorn]

  62. Pantelis Vassilakis says:

    Great review and playing!
    Just received my bc-109, ordered mainly due to this page :-)
    Great sound but, after the first three hours I still cannot get it to produce sounds that I cannot match by fiddling a little with my RAT2. Tried it at both softer and louder passages/contexts.
    The analogman’s fuzz setting is only useful for the last quarter of the knob’s range, limiting the possibilities. A good (great) Analogman sound begins with V at 1:30 and F at 3:00 (not much left in the range). I achieved an almost identical (to my ears) sound with the RAT 2 controls set as follows: Distortion at 9:00; Filter at 12:00, and level at 11:00, with still a lot of the scales’ range availably for variation. Am I missing something?
    Also, would you pair the Analogman BC-109 with a Maxon CP-9 reissue compressor and at what order/setting. I’m putting my guitars through a smaller Fender amp and/or a Fishman Artist

    [The BC109 is a fuzz and fuzz pedals do have a different gain sweep than distortions, like the RAT. The RAT has a very wide sweep and a more sophisticated cirquit. You can get pretty much anything from almost clean boost to fuzz just by tweaking the controls. A fuzz however doesn't have that dynamic alone but you can compensate by using the guitar volme control and get much more out of the pedal. Now, the reason why you can get very similar tones as well is the fact that the RAT was designed to capture the tone of a fuzz being played through a cranked Marshall with humbuckers. That dark and slightly compressed character is what you get when you crank the BC109. Personally I don't think one eliminates the other but it depends on what tones you want. - Bjorn]

  63. Scott D says:

    I have been playing a Wampler Leviathan Fuzz pedal since it was available on the market. I also have a Wampler Velvet Fuzz which nails Gilmour’s tone spot on if you ask me. The Wampler Leviathan can be switched between germanium and silicon. I tend to play it more in the silicon mode, which is why the AnalogMan SunFace BC109sparked my interest. I ordered one up this weekend, and should have it soon. My goal is just to have another fuzz box to play with, nothing more. I’m not chasing the Gilmour tone; I think I’ve already found that with the Velvet Fuzz if I need it. This was an excellent review, and incredible recording, BRAVO! Thanks for posting and sharing. On a side note, in another discussion thread I believe if I’m not mistaken you said you would post a review of the Mojo Hand FX Villanova, but never saw it. If it’s tucked away somewhere, please let me know where. I recently picked up the Villanova, and I really like it. I sold an Earthquaker Devices The Depths for the Villanova. I prefer the villanova. I also have a Micro Vibe which does a fine job as well.

    [Hi Scott! Thanks for sharing :) Can't remember talking about the Villanova. I never got one anyway... - Bjorn]

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