Ram's Head, Head To Head: A Classic Fuzz Shoot Out

Last month, we did a shoot out with an original Klon and a few Klones. For our next shootout, Johnny from Alchemy Audio was gracious enough to lend us an original Big Muff Ram's Head. We paired it alongside two of our favorite clones as well as a BYOC kit that Johnny assembled for us to see how they stacked up. Dig in to one of the greatest fuzz pedals of all time.

The Big Muff Pi Ram's Head is one of, if not the quintessential fuzz box. The brainchild of Mike Matthews of Electro-Harmonix, the Ram's Head was the second version of the Big Muff built from 1973-1977 in the New York factory. To learn more about where the Ram's Head fits into the history of the Big Muff, check out our Big Muff Timeline.

A laundry list of players have had a Ram's Head on their board, and collectors pay top dollar for originals in good shape. It's unmistakable mid-scooped fuzz was famously used by David Gilmour on Pink Floyd's "Comfortably Numb," helping place that performance into the canon of the greatest solos of all time. J Mascis of Dinosaur Jr. falls into both categories, defining his signature sound since the beginning with a Ram's Head and continuing to fill his collection (one of his recent purchases was here on Reverb).

With about 20 different circuit revisions—mostly based on availability of parts—it may be hard to imagine cloning the circuit, but builders like Wren and Cuff, JHS, Vick Audio are up to the task. There's even a Build Your Own Clone version for the DIYers that sounds great. After the shoot out, we all had our opinions about which was our favorite, but the real takeaway was that you can find this fuzzy tone at any price point. So get out there, and find your fuzz.

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