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Like the Bee Buzz, the Black Cat D&S began as a request from our Japanese distributor, who asked us to make a custom replica of the Ibanez/Maxon OD-801. The design first appeared in 1974 as the Maxon D&S, and the circuit was similar to the Version 2 (Rams Head) Big Muff. But the tone stack was quite a bit different than what has been used in any version of the Big Muff. In our opinion it’s much more versatile, and usable throughout the entire range of the control. On a traditional Big Muff type pedal, the tone rolloff gets very muddy, resulting in a loss of definition and mushy sound. Maxon redesigned the tone circuitry to dump some resistance to ground, allowing much better definition in the low end. This gave the D&S a much more versatile tone control with a wider variety of sounds. When we examined the circuit, we found that there really wasn’t very much that we could improve upon for our version of the D&S. So we decided to leave it as it was and go for a faithful recreation. Even our choice of components was essentially the same as the early Maxon version – metal film resistors, stacked metal film caps, Nichicon electrolytic capacitors; we even sourced the original Toshiba 2SC1815-BL transistors that Maxon used. Just like the original on which it was based, the Black Cat D&S is a great sounding Muff-style fuzz pedal with a highly versatile wide range of tones.