Who is the User?

A project log for Open Source Analog Effects Pedal

A modular platform for developing and trading guitar (and other) audio effects. Focus on, but not limited to, pure analog signal path.

JoshJosh 08/19/2014 at 18:100 Comments


I have been a Front of House sound engineer for several bands over the past 5 years. I dabble in playing guitar, but I'm by no means an expert. With all of the great digital pedal boards out there, most of the players still prefer stand-alone pedals. My interest in electronics got me to studying the internal circuits, and I realized that these "magic" boxes are really quite simple. So I built a few prototype pedals and they sounded great! Other people thought they sounded good too. The general comment from guitar players was: I wish I knew how to do that. 

Here's to you, Mr Guitar Player

Who is the user? Every guitar player. In the simplest form, modifying this pedal should not pose any more complication than changing out a tube in a tube amplifier. Step one: open box. Step two: plug modules together. Step three: Plug in controls. Step four: close box. Step five: shred guitar. As easy as stacking Legos. Does your buddy's pedal sound better? Try out his magic module on your pedal! Just plug it in and play!

Here's to you, Mr DIY Guy

There's a second user out there... the true experimenter. The guy who tried his friend's tone control module and has to have it tonight. Well here's to you: go to radio shack right now and get everything you need for that tone control. Boom. The 'Shack may be dying, but it's still the only place you can go get parts this second to build something (in the USA, anyway). That may sound limiting considering the wide array of available online sources, but how "open" is a pedal that can't be built from parts you can buy down the street? 

The User is YOU.

If your comfort level is "I can plug some stuff in" then you will enjoy the benefit of obtaining modules and assembling them to recreate that pedal you always wanted! Or you can throw caution to the wind and stick some fuzz in front of your tube overdrive module! Just being able to experiment with modules in different orders will provide an easy custom pedal that you can actually gig with. 

But if your comfort level is "I'll make it myself!" then you can have all the confidence in the world that following the spec will ensure your scratch-built module will work in any other pedal. 

Whatever your comfort level, a custom pedal is now within reach.