This is a library of perfboard and single-sided PCB effect layouts for guitar and bass. I'm not an electrical engineer by any stretch of the imagination, just a DIY'er who likes drawing layouts. It is meant for the hobbyist (so commercial use of any of these layout is not allowed without permission) and as a way to give back to the online DIY community.

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Hughes & Kettner Red Box Mk. II

Here's a nice utility box for home recording or even live application (if you've run into a sound guy who hates guitar amps 😠). It's a direct box but also a cab sim (4x12). It won't run off phantom power, so just power it with a 9v wall wart or a battery. Also, I added a ground lift switch that's absent in the original. If you don't want to include it, omit the 100n cap and 10Ω resistor coming off of pin 1 of the XLR and just connect pin 1 to ground. Also, connected to the Speaker In pad should be another jack for "speaker through" (so you don't blow up your amp). Here's the schematic and original user manual for reference.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Bajaman AC30 Normal Channel

Here's Baja's AC30 Normal Channel emulator. Throw a treble booster in front of this and you're pretty darn close to nailing some Brian May tones. Schematic and discussion here on FSB.

Friday, October 12, 2018

DAM Buzzotron

For Fuzz Friday, here's the D*A*M Buzzotron with a few modifications (based on H.A.'s suggestions).The Buzzotron is a tweaked Burns Buzzaround, which can also be built on this layout. What I've added is a master volume control and a ICL7660-based voltage inverter. This allows you to power the effect with a standard +9v supply and use PNP germanium transistors like the originals. Here's the Buzzotron and Buzzaround schematics for reference.

And if you're interested in building the original Buzzaround populate the board like this:

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Baja AC30TB Emulator

Another one of Bajaman's many amp emulator circuits. It emulates the frequency response of the classic Vox AC30 top boost channel, including power amplifier emulation. It's designed to fit in a 125B with top mounted jacks. Schematic and discussion on FSB here.

The input buffer stage uses a 2SK117 JFET with DGS pinout, but I've throw in an extra pad to use JFETs with GSD pinout (J201, 2N5457, etc). If you're using the 2SK117 you won't need to populate the jumper by Q1, but if you're using a GSD pinout transistor, you will need that jumper.

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Budda Om Overdrive

Stumbled across this one and it seems pretty cool. It's like an Escobedo Punch-in-the-Face sandwiched between two opamp gain stages, and is very similar to the Carl Martin Crush Zone. Wide range of gain and tones on tap as well. Pots are board mounted and it'll fit in a 1590B.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Catalinbread WIIO

The Catalinbread WIIO is a Hiwatt amp emulator specifically going for the sound of Pete Townsend's Hiwatts on the Live at Leeds album. (Throwing this and a Univox SuperFuzz in the same box would be a must if you're a big fan of the Who...) The topology of the circuit (cascaded MOSFETs) is similar to the zVex Box of Rock and Catalinbread's other Hiwatt emulator, the Rah. Here's the schematic for reference. Should fit in a 1590B just fine.

Friday, September 28, 2018

Basic Audio Spooky Tooth

Found a trace of this over on the Tagboard Forum. It appears to be a highly modified Fuzzrite with an added gain recovery stage and a lot of value changes. The Saturation pot increases the output cap of the first stage, and the Fuzz pot is a pregain control. Originals use PN2222 transistors for Q1-2, which is a TO-92 packaged 2N2222A, so either will work just fine. Here's the schematic for reference and I will have fabricated boards for this in the store soon.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Eazius Tremor

Stumbled across this schematic and it's like CJ's Shoot the Moon and the EA Tremolo had a baby (Though I think this predates the Shoot the Moon...)–the audio path is like the Shoot the Moon and the LFO from the EA Tremolo has been adapted to pulse an LED. Use a 5mm diffused yellow LED and a 2k light/2M dark LDR (or socket and experiment). The trimmer is a gain/volume control. Set to unity and forget about it.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

MXR Micro Chorus

The originals used a now nearly unobtainable SAD512D chip, but the wizards on FSB converted it to work with an MN3007. Now that those are also hard to get a hold of, I've laid this out for an MN 3207–which is almost the same as the 3007, just with a slightly different pinout for power and ground. But if you want to use a 3007, I've included a daughter board that will let you use it (it will also work to use a 3207 in place of a 3007). This will best fit in a 125B and the schematic can be found here.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

AMZ Overdrive Pro

An oldie, but a goodie (I assume–Jack designs good stuff). It's a unique high gain design with a 3-band EQ. In Jack's own words:

It was made by combining the following circuit fragments: input gain stage is the Muffer, followed by the IC gain stage of the Fat Gnat, a tone control from the Fender Pro Roc amp and the output buffer of a TS-808! High gain boutique sound at its best, though not a clone of any existing pedal.
Here are some ideas for mods that can allow you to customize the sound for the best response with your gear:
  • Use a bipolar opamp for IC1, even the LM741 will sound good!
  • If it is too fizzy sounding, increase C5 to 270pF or 560pF
  • For more bass response, increase C4 to 2.2uF or 4.7uF
  • Use red LEDs for D1 and D2 for more output
  • The tone control shown on the schematic has a big mid-range scoop. If you would like a more traditional response, increase C8 to 470pF or even 1000pF
Several people have complained about the low output of this pedal. The easiest fix is to change the clipping diodes to LEDs as suggested above. Not only does this increase the output but it also allows better control over the range of clipping. If you want slightly more output and some added even harmonics, just replace one of the clipping diodes with an LED - doesn't matter which one.

Here's the schematic for reference. I laid it out for board mounted pots in a 125B with top mounted jacks.

Friday, September 14, 2018

Devi Ever Ruby

Here's another Devi circuit for Fuzz Friday–the Ruby. It's essentially 2 Electras (sans clipping diodes) stacked. In Devi's own words, "The Ruby is like a Tone Bender, but way classier and secretly more misogynistic."

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Sunn 200S Preamp

Here's a simple bass preamp circuit derived from the Sunn 200S using JFETs. It's pretty similar to the Bassman Preamp, but with the EQ section at the end of the circuit instead of the middle. Original S200S amps didn't have the Mid control, but it's kind of necessary IMHO. Bias the JFETs to 4.5v and adjust to taste. Not sure if the BAT85 diodes are necessary as they're not in the Bassman Pre, but I left them in just in case. Also not 100% sure if the below demo follows this schematic exactly, but it should be in the ballpark. Should fit nicely in a 1590B.

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Devi Ever Dark Boost

Haven't done a Devi circuit in a while, and I keep stumbling across them, so here's the Dark Boost. It's essentially an Electra circuit without the clipping diodes and a Pre-Gain control. Apparently works pretty well on bass too.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Ramble FX Marvel Drive 2/3

Here's a newer version of the Marvel Drive from Ramble FX. Did the first version of this circuit a couple years ago, and decided to update the layout with board mounted pots and the Presence pot.  I believe the only difference between V2 and V3 is a switchable internal LT1054-based voltage doubler in the V3. Given that those can be somewhat expensive and I know you all have different preferences when it comes to voltage doublers, I've left the charge pump out. If you want to make a V2, just ignore all this chatter about voltage doublers and just build the layout below. If you want to make a V3, wire lug 2 of a SPDT toggle switch to the +9/18v pad of the layout below, then wire lug 1 to +9v and lug 3 to the output of your voltage doubler. Here's the schematic this is based on.

Friday, August 31, 2018

Roger Mayer Spitfire

For Fuzz Friday here's Roger Mayer's Spitfire. It's pretty similar to the Mongoose, but with a different transistor/IC pair and a few value changes. Apparently it sounds really good on chords and doesn't get too thick. Here's the schematic for reference.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Mr. Black BB-74x

This is Jack Deville's Marshall-in-a-box emulating a 1974X 18-watt combo amp. Tracing credit goes to Ralf Gottschalk, who has a nice little dual-layer board of this up on OshPark if you don't feel like etching or grabbing the perf for this one (build doc with schematic in the description).

Thursday, August 23, 2018

DMB Stellar Drive

Here's the 3-knob version of the DMB Pedals Stellar Drive. It's RAT based, but with soft clipping instead of hard, and has pretty wide range of tones on tap. Here's the schematic for reference.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Maxon CP101 Compressor

Stumbled across the schematic for this compressor and couldn't find a layout for it. So I drew it up. This follows the original red box version, not the black box reissue. It's an optical compressor and apparently fairly subtle. I couldn't find any info on the vactrol used in the original–sockets are your friend. Should be an easy fit in a 1590B.

Friday, August 17, 2018

The Gruntbox

Got a request for this one and I'm always up for a bass effect. So this week's Fuzz Friday is Mark Hammer's Gruntbox. It's a pretty unique design and a lot of flexibility. More info here. Schematic and demo files can be downloaded here.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Valve Wizard Jenny Greenteeth

Here's a weird chorus from Valve Wizard based around a PT2399. In Merlin's own words...

Chorus is created by passing the signal through a very short delay line, somewhere between about 8ms and 25ms. The delay time is modulated and the delayed signal is mixed back with the original un-delayed signal. Some feedback ('repeats') is often applied too, to thicken the effect. The PT2399 has a minimum delay time of about 25ms, which is just short enough to do a thick chorus effect. The more subtle chorus effects that a 'proper' chorus pedal would do are not available as they require shorter delay times ( but I'm one of those people who only ever wants his chorus thick!). However, as well as getting chorus I soon found that various other unexpected effects could also be had for free, including pitch bend and a kind of ring modulation. That's why I've called it 'weird chorus'.

It will fit in a 125B with top mounted jacks easily, but it's narrow enough that it will fit in a 1590B, but probably without the pots board mounted. Here's the original build doc with the schematic and Merlin's original layout.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

JHS Angry Charlie V3

Here's the newer version of the Angry Charlie with the 3-band EQ. Pretty much the Crunch Box with a 3-band Baxandall tone stack (similar to this) tacked onto the end. Pots are board mounted and it should squeeze nicely into a 1590B.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Nine Volt Nirvana Tape Measure

Found a bunch of Nine Volt Nirvana/Joe Gagan schematics on Fredd Brigg's blog. I'll probably do a few more of them, but first is the Tape Measure boost. Super simple and should easily fit in a 1590A. Original unit used a trimmer instead of an external volume control, but I figure most people will want the external control.

Friday, August 3, 2018

Feisty Little One Thermal Detonator

It's Fuzz Friday! This one got traced on FSB a while ago and I finally got around to drawing it up. It's a silicon Fuzz Face with bias control, sag control, and switchable feedback loop (oscillation). I laid it out like a zVex pedal (at least in control layout) and it should fit in a 1590B, either with the circuit board flat or standing vertically in the enclosure.

And here's a wiring diagram to make the offboard wiring a little clearer.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

MI Audio Blues Pro

Here's a nice little overdrive circuit from MI Audio. This reflects the 2nd version of the Blues Pro, but if you want to make version 1, just jump pads 1 and 2 of each switch respectively. Should fit nicely in a 1590B.

Friday, July 27, 2018

Soil Slinger and NEWS!

It's a special Fuzz Friday! My fabricated boards came in for the Dirt Transmitter, and I finally got the chance to verify them. So I made a video of the whole build process!

Also, what's more exciting than the build video is the launch of the new Effects Layouts store! It's kind of a soft launch for now, as there aren't a whole ton of boards up yet. But more are coming! Also, aside from a few boards, stock is rather low on the boards as they're left over prototypes. But I will be ordering more soon. Don't worry, perf and etch layouts aren't stopping anytime soon. Thanks to everyone for their support over the years and for helping to create a really great international community around this great hobby.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Way Huge Drive/Geisha Drive

The Geisha Drive (or just called Drive sometimes) was a limited run overdrive from Way Huge and is a great sounding circuit. It uses a quad opamp to form an input buffer stage, gain stage, followed by some hard clipping and a modified BMP tone stack, into the volume pot, followed by a gain recovery stage. Should fit nicely in a 1590B with the pots board mounted.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

BearFoot FX Emerald Green Distortion Machine

Unique little distortion box from Bjorn. The original uses 1A1200 diodes (which are pretty big), but other (and smaller) silicon diodes can be used. Should fit nicely in a 1590B.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Run Off Groove Whisker Biscuit

For Fuzz Friday here's the Run Off Groove Whisker Biscuit–Big Muff meets Bazz Fuss. From the ROG site:

The Whisker Biscuit is a hybrid of the Bazz Fuss and the Big Muff Pi. A single Bazz Fuss stage replaces the two clipping stages of the BMP. Smooth, super-long sustain, and good clean-up with the guitar volume knob make this circuit an interesting alternative to the standard BMP.

I've included the optional 47pF caps as well as the tone control mod. Omit the 47pF caps if you want more treble, and if you prefer a more standard tone stack, replace the 22k resistors with jumpers and use a B100k pot.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018


The Sentinel is a PT2399-based pitch modulator, delay, reverb and drone verb designed by Arnoud Philip (~arph) as part of the DIYSB 10th Anniversary design contest. It's based on the Sewer Pipes ring-verb and the Noise Ensemble. Original thread here, schematic here. Should be able to squeeze it into a 1590B. 

Note: LED2 in the layout is a bi-color LED that could be used externally as a rate indicator or even the on/off indicator. For the later, use the footswitch to break/connect the connection between the common cathode (middle lead) and the 1k resistor going to ground at the top of the board. Also, the 25k trimmer is a fine tune control for the Drone pot.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Ashbory Bass Preamp

The Ashbory bass was first introduced in 1986 and is/was a half scale (18") fretless travel bass with a piezo pickup and built in preamp. That preamp is essentially a Baxendall tone stack feeding into the volume control, into an op amp based gain stage. I stumbled across the schematic and thought it would be a good addition to the library. Should fit nicely in a 1590B, or you could wire it into a bass.

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

DeadAstronaut Black Triangle

Got another take on the bufferless Tube Screamer. DeadAstronaut has added some extra tone shaping options for tone, gain, and clipping. Pretty versatile tones on tap from light drive into heavier territory. He's also got a PCB with board mounted pots and switches for sale on his site here if you don't feel like wiring all those toggle switches.

Friday, July 6, 2018

Parasit Studio 8-Bitar

For Fuzz Friday, here's a really cool design from Parasit Studio:

The 8-Bitar is a minimalistic octave down pedal with a 8-bit sound (glitchy and gated square wave fuzz). It's small enough to fit inside a 1590A without any special parts.

The design goal with this pedal was to achieve the core octave tone from the Arcadiator, but with as few components as possible. I'm happy with the result since it only uses one chip (a CD4069).

Usual caveats apply for getting the best tracking - humbuckers, neck pickup and tone rolled off.

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Pigtronix Fat Drive

Here's an interesting one from Pigtronix. It uses a TL072 to push a CD4049, which is followed by another TL072 pushing a Rat-esque tone control. All the gain stages make for natural compression and tube-like tone without using clipping diodes. Schematic for reference on FSB here (note, I've linked the inputs of the unused stages of the CD4049 to +9v to avoid any unwanted noise). Runs great on 9 or 18 volts and will fit in a 1590B with board mounted pots.

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Diamanté Compressor

Stumbled across this one over on the old La Revolution Deux blog. It's a simplified version of the Diamond Compressor, removing the EQ and the blinking LED circuitry. Makes for a much smaller footprint and will fit nicely in either a 1590B or 125B. Here's the schematic for reference.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Demeter Fat Control

Looking for a mid-range frequency booster? This one's apparently really good at it. Schematic and discussion on FSB here.

Friday, June 22, 2018

Ibanez OD-850/Maxon D&S OD-801

There are a host of Big Muff clones and variation, but one of the most sought after clones is the Ibanez OD-850. Like all vintage Ibanez pedals, the OD-850 is just a rehoused and rebadged Maxon design–in this case, the D&S OD-801. While this shares a lot in common with a Ram's Head BMP, it differs greatly in the tone section. Here's Kit Rae's description:

Maxon opted to alter the tone stack for this clone, fixing the bass value across the tone pot sweep... The whole high pass and low pass tone section is incorporated into the recovery stage. What this did was to make the bass and treble sides have a more useful range of sounds. The treble side retains some bass across the sweep, so it is not as ear piercing and trebly as a standard BMP when dialed completely to the treble side, nor do the highs seem to be completely removed when dialed fully to the bass side. It kind of makes finding the 'sweet spot' a bit different sounding than the traditional BMP tone stack, but that is what makes this version unique.

I've laid this out for more common CBE pinout transistors, where as the C828s of the originals are BCE. This follows the first version released in 1974, and will fit in a 1590B with board mounted pots. Here's the schematic for reference.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Toadworks Mr. Squishy

Here's an interesting take on the Orange Squeezer compressor from Toadworks. Extra controls and clean boost capabilities when the Squish control is at zero and the Level control is maxed. Schematic here for reference.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Jon Patton Cardinal Tremolo V2

The Cardinal Trem is a harmonic tremolo designed by Jon Patton and meant to emulate the tremolo effect built into several Fender amps from the early 60s (Twin, Super, Pro, Showman, etc). What makes it harmonic? The audio signal is amplified by the first JFET stage, then split into a high-pass path and a low-pass path. Each path is modulated optically with the vactrols, then amplified and mixed into the output. The LFO is designed around a quad opamp (in the original it's a quad, I had to divide it into 2, dual opamps to make it fit) and pulses the LEDs in the vactrols. Schematic and full circuit explanation can be found here.

The L pad will need to be grounded in some fashion for the LEDs to pulse. LED1 can be used as an external rate indicator, either on all the time or as the on/off indicator as well. Jon recommends using optical bypass for this effect (hence doing the Optical Bypass layout on Tuesday 😁), so to use LED1 as the indicator LED, connect it to both pads for the LED on the Optical Bypass board and ground the L pad. If using a 3PDT, just connect the L pad to lug 4 and lug 5 to ground as outlined in the General Layout Notes page.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Optical Bypass

Here's another alternative to the 3PDT for bypass wiring. It's based on the method VooDoo Lab uses for bypass and uses a optocoupler to achieve true bypass using a DPDT. I've drawn up 2 different layouts for this: a standard perf/PCB layout, as well as another PCB I did in Eagle with the footswitch board mounted. There are extra pads so the compact or the larger DPDT footswitch can be used, as well as an extra pad for the resistor so 1/8th or 1/4th watt can be used.

Note, in the board mounted footswitch version In/Out pads refer to the jacks, and Send/Return refer to the effect in/out.

Friday, June 8, 2018

EarthQuaker Devices Dirt Transmitter

To close out EarthQuaker week, here's the Dirt Transmitter. I traced this one myself and below is a video showing the process. It's similar to a Fuzz Face, but a little different. I found this description from (I'm assuming) Jamie over on TGP:

I guess it's kinda like a fuzz face but it started as two gain stages running into each other with an input gain control and a sag on the second stage (bias). Voltage feedback was added and it became similar to a fuzz face in topology but it sounds nothing like one IMO. In this case the sound is totally dependent on the transistors, replace them and it's a whole different beast.

Here's my video on tracing the circuit as well as a demo:


Here's the schematic:

And the layout:

You can also order a few boards from OshPark here.


Added a perf layout for this based off the Eagle board above.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

EarthQuaker Devices Dunes

If the Palisades is too much for you, the Dunes has a much smaller footprint and less controls to get distracted with. Pretty standard Tube Screamer clone with clipping options and a couple tone shaping switches. Might be a bit of a squeeze but it will fit in a 1590B with board mounted pots.

Monday, June 4, 2018

EarthQuaker Devices Crimson Drive (3-knob)

What? A Monday post? Yep. This week is EarthQuaker week. EQD is easily my favorite pedal company, and I own more of their pedals than any other builder. Not to mention I've learned a lot about pedal design from Jamie's work. So this week I'll be posting 3 EQD circuits and hopefully a video to go along with this week's Fuzz Friday.

To kick EarthQuaker week off, here's the now discontinued Crimson Drive. Did the 2-knob version ages ago, but the 3-knob version was recently posted on FSB so I gave it an update. Beyond the addition of the tone control, there's a few capacitors removed compared to the 2-knob version. The germanium transistor is also different–an NPN instead of the PNP–and the germanium transistors were swapped from 1N60Ps to 1N34As. Easy fit in a 1590B with board mounted pots.

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Run Off Groove Mockman 2.0

Continuing to knock out the last few ROG designs I haven't laid out. This one's a pretty easy little circuit, emulating the distortion in Rockman amps designed an used by Boston guitarist Tom Scholz. The toggle allows you to go between 80s (classic) and 90s (modern) tones, and it should all fit in a 1590a. Schematic, sound clips and more info on the ROG site.