This Week on the Breadboard: Animals Diamond Peak Overdrive (with some mods, of course)

Chuck D. Bones

Circuit Wizard
HamishR brought the Animals Diamond Peak Overdrive to my attention. Animals is a Japan-based boutique pedal builder. They collaborated with Marc (Skreddy) Ahlfs on the design. It's based on the Skreddy Major, which spawned the Lunar Module, Screw Driver, Hybrid Fuzz Driver, and so on. Marc is moving away from Germanium :eek: because it's a problem part in a production environment. HamishR bought a Diamond Peak and traced it. The only problem he encountered was the unmarked SMD capacitors. So we had to do some guesswork, based on the related Skreddy pedals. We ended up with this familiar circuit:
Diamond Peak schem.png
Mr. Ahlfs uses low-gain silicon transistors in place of germanium. Capacitors with red ref des are our best guesses. That's all well and good, but we wanted the BASS control back. Easy enough to do. I was dissatisfied with the limited range on the TONE control. While I was stirring things up, I redid Q1's bias network. This was my result:

White: VOLUME - Red: TREBLE - Blue: BASS - Green: GAIN
Animals Diamond Peak OD - cb mod breadboard 04.jpg

I used some Martian transistors that John at K Pedals gave me. Their HFE is in the mid 70s. Any high-gain, low-noise trans will work for Q1. This thing has plenty of gain and sounds good across the range of all four controls. It sounds particularly good when GAIN is below 10:00. Different transistors will bias differently, so you might want to fiddle R11 to dial-in the bias. On mine, with a 9.2V supply and no signal, Q1-C is at +4.98V and Q3-C is at +4.35V. YMMV. Plays nicely with single-coils or humbuckers.

Animals Diamond Peak Overdrive - cb mod v1.2.png
 

music6000

Well-known member
HamishR brought the Animals Diamond Peak Overdrive to my attention. Animals is a Japan-based boutique pedal builder. They collaborated with Marc (Skreddy) Ahlfs on the design. It's based on the Skreddy Major, which spawned the Lunar Module, Screw Driver, Hybrid Fuzz Driver, and so on. Marc is moving away from Germanium :eek: because it's a problem part in a production environment. HamishR bought a Diamond Peak and traced it. The only problem he encountered was the unmarked SMD capacitors. So we had to do some guesswork, based on the related Skreddy pedals. We ended up with this familiar circuit:
View attachment 32573
Mr. Ahlfs uses low-gain silicon transistors in place of germanium. Capacitors with red ref des are our best guesses. That's all well and good, but we wanted the BASS control back. Easy enough to do. I was dissatisfied with the limited range on the TONE control. While I was stirring things up, I redid Q1's bias network. This was my result:

White: VOLUME - Red: TREBLE - Blue: BASS - Green: GAIN
View attachment 32574

I used some Martian transistors that John at K Pedals gave me. Their HFE is in the mid 70s. Any high-gain, low-noise trans will work for Q1. This thing has plenty of gain and sounds good across the range of all four controls. It sounds particularly good when GAIN is below 10:00. Different transistors will bias differently, so you might want to fiddle R11 to dial-in the bias. On mine, with a 9.2V supply and no signal, Q1-C is at +4.98V and Q3-C is at +4.35V. YMMV. Plays nicely with single-coils or humbuckers.

View attachment 32575
Something like this:

Hybone Drive Mockup Pedal.jpg
 

Chuck D. Bones

Circuit Wizard
Latest (and maybe final) update.
Took some more fiddlin' to get it the way I wanted. Didn't help that I had to struggle with Bill's Law once or twice along the way. It's possible to build this on an Aldrin board, but will require a bit of creativity to hook-up the TREBLE control. Yes, those are 2N2221 trannies. They are low-gain 2N2222's. The 2N4393 came from my vintage stash. Three metal can transistors for maximum mojo. All controls sound good across their entire range. Still a bit dirty with GAIN at zero, however dialing back the guitar's volume cleans it up. If you want to be able to fine-tune the bias, then replace R11 with a 10K trimpot* in series with a 5.1K resistor. Q3 could be Germanium if you like, but silicon sounds just fine. You can tune the midrange to suit your taste by tweaking C3 & C12. C3 larger fattens up the low midrange; C12 larger fattens up the high midrange. The values I have give a good midrange balance and a decent BASS control sweep. If you want more gain, reduce R2. C7 sets the brightness when TREBLE is dimed. C9 controls how dark it gets when TREBLE is at zero. It's all interactive, so if you change one part, plan on changing other parts.

Animals Diamond Peak Overdrive - cb mod v1.4.1.png

One of my neater breadboards. Lotta spare parts in the lower left and upper left corners.
White: VOLUME
Red: TREBLE
Blue: BASS
Green: GAIN

Animals Diamond Peak OD - cb mod breadboard 08.jpg

* Electronic Goldmine has 10K trimpots on sale.
 
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