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Black Ice


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Yeah, as far as I know, this thing just contains two germanium diodes (it may contain a capacitor or two as well, but I don't know that for sure, since it's encapsulated in epoxy); I guess you could do just the same for a few cents, and see if you like it. You may - or may not; it's a pretty crude distortion device and having one on-board may not make a lot of sense either - but why not try.

I suggest trying the DIY way as I said: connect two germanium diodes in parallel with the guitar output, each in opposite direction from each other. You should probably be able to switch this off, because otherwise it will distort all the time once the volume is high enough.

Edited by MerlinTheWizard
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It's a piece of crap, never read a positive review of that thing ever.

That's more or less what the consensus seems to be. I do know of one instance where the guy loved it. I personally think it's a waste of time - I mean you're clipping the relatively weak output from a guitar pickup. Ge clipping diodes really belong in a distortion pedal, IMO. Even then, I like the sound of Si diodes better... :D

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I got it to work ok, but it takes a lot of "oomph" to activate. I used overwound HB's (12K ohm) and 250k pot (required). Best heard at low to mid frequencies. It does make your normal distortion effects sound a bit "dirtier" but its no great shakes by itself.

Edited by Southpa
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Someone came up with something that they called "Strawberry Ice" that looked a little better than the disdained "Black Ice". It uses Schottky diodes instead of Ge diodes. Listen to the soundclip and decide for yourself.


EDIT: here is the schematic that isn't showing up on the HTML file: http://members.aol.com/ku07090/strawberry_1.jpg

Edited by Paul Marossy
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