A few days ago I received an announcement that Black Cat Pedals is pushing out a new pedal – the N-Fuzz. Turns out this isn’t really a new pedal, but rather a legacy product from the original created by Fred Bonte. This version is based on the very popular and much reviewed OD-Fuzz, but it’s been modified to use Japanese components. This is a good thing in that you now have a wide array of fuzz tones and bias control. It’s a fuzz with a mission to please a variety of tastes.
You can’t get the original N-fuzz any more as they were made from 2001 and 2003. Sure, you can get them – on Ebay! Not only that, but the original was only available in the Asian market. As with most Black Cat Pedals, the name comes from a shortened version of what the pedal represents. In this case it’s the NPN transistor that is used to drive this fuzz. Instead of putting N-Channel Fuzz across the packaging, it’s just short and sweet.
Tom Hughes, the owner of Black Cat Pedals has this to say, “The toggle switch of the original N-Fuzz selected between two fixed bias points, which resulted in one position having a High output, and the other position having a Low output. We replaced the toggle switch with a variable bias control pot. This control makes the new N-Fuzz much more versatile. He also said, “In selecting transistors, we tried several different types before we found the perfect combination. We eventually decided on Toshiba 2SC1815 for Q1 and Panasonic 2SC1384 for Q2. A lot of experimentation was also needed to achieve the widest usable range for the Bias control. This allows the N-Fuzz to offer many different tones and timbres of fuzz.” I’m going to take his word for it.
I’d like to hear from the Black Cat diehards. What pedals have you owned and does this N-fuzz peak your interest? If it does (or doesn’t) we’d love you to leave a review on Pedal Finder and tell us all about it. You’ll be doing your fellow musicians a big solid.
Here’s a demo: