This is a full-on fuzz distortion pedal, housed in our own original design steel desk-type enclosure.
Along with a volume control there’s an overtone knob which controls the pitch of the harmonic overtone in the sound. This sounds great at any setting, but also is really exciting as you adjust it – like a cross between a wah wah and a phaser. So an LFO option is incorporated to modulate this control (giving a triangle wave-shape, speed adjustable from a slow sweep to a fast wobble). There’s a switch (‘MOD.’) on the front panel to turn this on or off, the status and speed of the oscillator shown by the red and white throbbing meter backlight.
The DrFF-3 has a hi/lo intensity pushbutton on the back panel, switching the overtone from a lower ‘inside the sound’ to a higher-pitched in-your-face zip. On the low setting it’s possible to get a strong – perfectly tracking – low octave introduced, especially when the guitar’s neck pickup is selected. Add an LFO fast wobble, and great thick organ-y tones are possible.
As part of how the distortion circuit works, the Dr Freakenstein has an impressive fixed-setting noise gate built in, creating dead silence between notes (which is very strange for a distortion).
IGOR Also, being the Dr Freakenstein Fuzz, of course it has an assistant called Igor – which is a small dual-sensitivity pressure pad that you tread on or work by hand. This plugs in via mini-jack to either tweak the overtone according to how hard you press, or to adjust the bias of the modulation range; on a fast modulation setting, this can give an effect reminiscent of a bubbling synth, sweeping down from high cutoff to low. Igor is like ‘aftertouch’ on a synth – but for guitarists. It’s a new thing – tiny and light, and with practically no moving parts. One Igor comes with each Dr Freakenstein.
There’s also a meter for monitoring your input signal, plus a knifeswitch that you throw to power it up.
Can I turn down the amount of fuzz? No. Why would you?
Does turning down the volume decrease the amount of fuzz? No – the volume is a passive control that comes after the whole distortion circuit.
Can I use the LFO without the fuzz? No – the LFO in effect turns the overtone knob up and down.
How heavy is it? 1lb 9oz (0.7kg)
Can I adjust – or switch off – the noise gate? No – the noise gate is part of the whole way it works, and can’t be adjusted or seperated like that.
When do I throw the knifeswitch on or off? Throw it on when you set up, and off when you go and have a break. Treat it like plugging into the input socket of a usual format pedal – except with the Dr Freakenstein it’s very obvious if you’ve powered down or not.
Can I turn on the whole effect by throwing the knifeswitch? Yes – leave the footswitch engaged and the whole thing lurches into action in a spectacular way.
Is the knifeswitch dangerous at all? Not in the least – whether you’re using battery or PSU.
Is the input meter a VU meter? It monitors the input signal but is not a VU meter, strictly speaking. (VU meters are quite specific types of meters).
Why is the Dr Freakenstein Fuzz so Freakin’ expensive? It has a custom-made enclosure, and making the pedal is very labour-intensive – there’s lots of wiring inside, lots of one-off little jobs to make the whole package work smoothly. It has a whole load of unique features – knifeswitch, meter, not to mention a cutting-edge foot controller…
Can I use a regular expression pedal with it? Most probably yes, but you’ll need a ¼” to minijack adaptor.
Can I use two Igors at once with it? No, it’s either ‘Overtone’ adjustment or ‘Mod. Range’ adjustment.
Can the same Igor work different Rainger FX pedals? Yes.
Can I use more than one at once? Not with the DrFF-3 – it either works with ‘overtone’ or with ‘mod. Range’, and can’t do both at once (even if you plug in two).
Can I use it with my hand? Yes – it has dual sensitivity.
What are the dimensions? 55mm in diameter, 9mm thick.
Does Igor use a battery? No – it’s entirely passive.
I’ve lost my Igor – what can I do? Get in touch…
Can Igor be used in place of an expression pedal for different makes of effects pedal? Quite possibly – though all regular expression pedals vary in resistance, and often with wiring. Of course you’d need a minijack to ¼” adaptor. Igor works pretty good with Electro Harmonix stuff BTW.
What is the resistance of Igor? He goes from about 1M Ohm down to tens of Ohms.
Does it have a mono or stereo minijack plug? It has a stereo one, though the ‘sleeve’ tab is not connected
Do you ship internationally? Yes we do. Standard or trackable.
What are the PSU requirements? 9v DC, 200mA (centre earth, sleeve +9v)
What warranty do you give? 3 years. There shouldn’t be, but if there is a problem do get in touch.
How can I pay? Paypal or electronic transfer are the usual methods.
Do you do any stickers or T-shirts etc? Got stickers – just ask. T-shirts – coming soon.
Are Rainger FX pedals true bypass? Yes they all are.
How are your audioclips recorded? Usually with my Gibson SG, and – unless otherwise stated – always plugged straight into the one effect only and then into a mixing desk and onto a computer using Logic, no EQ or other tweaking.
Where are your pedals made? All are made in the UK.
Are you going to be re-making the old pedals like the Compactotron or the Minor Concussion any time soon? In one form of another…