Dating pots mxr distortion
When I asked Howard about how the op-amp version originated and how he got involved in the redesign, he had this to say - "As chief engineer for Electro-Harmonix, basically my direction ( from E-H owner Mike Matthews) was to design a Big Muff using op-amps.He often would just tell me to "think about" something, and I took it from there.
However, due to the differing distortion characteristics of the op-amps it turned out to have a somewhat "grungier" sound than the transistor design, an effect preferred by some musicians.NOTE: This website is constantly updated as new information becomes available.Version, Edition, and Revision numbers listed here are not actual Electro-Harmonix identifiers.They were changed so that each wrapped around the top edge of the circuit board, allowing each knob to start at zero in the same position (finally! All big Muffs prior to the V4 had each pot mounted in a different position from the others.This also changed the TONE knob orientation so that bass was on the left and treble was on the right, as it has remained on all subsequent Big Muffs.I am including this as a legitimate Big Muff, even though it was not built on the classic Muff four-stage circuit. Though not quite the same as the organic transistor tone, is was very unique.It was intended to sound like a Big Muff and was released in the same box as Version 3, so I feel it must be included as a true Muff version. Supposedly only a few thousand of this version were made.The 50,000 square foot Manhattan factory was generating five million in annual sales.The traditional four transistor Big Muff circuit was radically changed at this time to a new circuit that used op-amp chips and one less gain stage, in an effort to reduce manufacturing costs.Howard Davis, Manager of Analog Circuit Design for E-H from 1976-1981, claims credit as the circuit designer for this version, as does former EHX designer Michael Abrams.Howard was responsible for over a dozen E-H pedal circuit designs, as well as most the the ”deluxe“ Electro-Harmonix models that appeared in the late 1970s to early 1980s, including the superb op-amp Deluxe Big Muff, Deluxe Memory Man, and Deluxe Electric Mistress.