The Silicon Orchid is a one-knob germanium fuzz with a circuit rooted in the MK 1.5 Tonebender. It’s a great fuzz for those who like to work their guitar’s volume knob & explore the various shades of dirt which a classic 2 transistor germanium fuzz circuit can offer. I’ve dialed in the EQ and breakup of the circuit for far less low end “wool” and much more midrange focus than you’ll find in vintage MK 1.5s or Fuzz Faces.
A pair of NOS Fairchild BC549B and BC550C silicon transistors, selective high end filtering, and the addition of subtle germanium diode clipping give the Orchid a dense, focused fuzztone at 100% guitar volume with a very gradual transition to bright and jangly clean tones when rolling back the guitar’s volume knob. Compared to a traditional Fuzz Face or TB MK1.5 circuit, the Orchid’s NOS germanium clipping diodes add slightly more compression and grit as the guitar volume is backed off and the sound is way less “scooped” in the midrange. The transition from Fuzz to thick dirt to sparkly grit to crystalline jangle is gradual & spread more evenly across the taper of the guitar volume pot.
The Orchid can also be used as a mild fuzz-boost after another scooped or dark dirt box. The Orchid’s focused midrange helps other thicker fuzzes to step forward in the mix. In fact, the Orchid loves being pushed by a compressor or a boost, too. The Orchid works well anywhere in your “dirt chain”, but I especially enjoy it when run after other boost, distortion, or fuzz.
The Orchid is a negative ground circuit and can be powered by standard Boss-style 9V adapters or incorporated into your pedalboard power supply without issue.