Fuzz – one of the ‘Grandfather’ effects of the guitar pedal scene. Fuzz pedals have been around in one form or another since the early 1960s, inspiring countless musicians over the years, from the 1960s up to the present day. Early fuzz pedals paved the way for more distorted guitar riffs in music, changing the landscape of rock and roll at the time, and leading to the creation of other ‘dirty’ pedals such as overdrive and distortion.
Popular users of muff pedals include Muse’s Chris Wolstenholme, Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour (that Comfortably Numb solo anyone?), The White Stripes’ Jack White, U2’s The Edge, and The Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach (an interesting side note, most if not all of those mentioned use an Electro-Harmonix Big Muff Pi or Big Muff variant to provide fuzz tone – cool huh?!).
“There’s something about a Gucci loafer kicking on a fuzz pedal” – Alex Turner.
Released relatively recently compared to other mainstay big-brand name pedals like the Electro-Harmonix Big Muff Pi or the Dunlop Fuzz Face, the Triangle Buff fuzz is Chinese-based musical equipment company Mooer’s shot at recreating those warm fuzzy tones from the early rock and roll period of the 1960s.
Design & Appearance
The Mooer uses a compact ‘mini’ footprint casing (dimensions of 93.5mm x 42mm x 52mm), which is particularly useful for those who happen to find themselves running out of space often on their pedal board (we’re all guilty of it from time to time!) or those who find themselves on the move a lot so need to travel light. The casing is fully metal, meaning it can take a fall or two and survive to play another day.
The silver metallic casing of the Mooer contrasts well with the black control knob markings that are printed in an easy-to-read font onto the pedal, meaning you’ll be able to quickly adjust tone, volume, or sustain levels on a whim without misreading the knob labelling.
A handy status LED in the centre of the pedal lets you know at a glance if the pedal is on or off, which can be useful for those who find themselves too carried away with solos to remember to turn their pedals on or off!
Both the input and output jacks are handily labelled for a quick plug-in setup, and having a jack on either side of the pedal means it can comfortably into both large and smaller pedal boards through the use of daisy chains.
The light weight of the pedal (160g), along with the ‘mini’ style casing size, also adds to its attraction for on-the-move players; simply unplug the pedal and slip it into your pocket, and away you go!
Features & Controls
The Mooer follows similar design principles to most ‘mini’ and standard-sized pedals alike; a three knob control system with individual knobs to control volume, tone, and sustain. The volume knob controls the volume of the effect produced, with greater volume suiting rocky performances and quieter volume suiting a more mellow setting.
The tone knob allows for adjusting of the tone colour, with a higher level of tone adding presence to the sound. Experimenting with the tone knob can create some amazing muddy or crisper sounding riffs. The sustain knob increases or decreases the amount of sustain on the fuzz effect – a higher sustain on the Mooer gives a wonderfully bright sound, whereas dialling back provides a muddier bassy feel.
As previously mentioned, the Mooer uses a small red status LED to let you know if the pedal is active or not. This can prove useful for dimly lit gig locations, as you can tell with a glance if the pedal is active by checking the LED light. A small metal stomp switch is used on the Mooer as a switch for turning the pedal on or off – the solid metal used for the stomp switch means it can take countless presses without giving in to wear and tear.
The pedal is true bypass, and its small form factor means there is no available room to fit a 9V battery, so a DC 9V adapter is required – power supply to the pedal can be easily incorporated into a pedal board through use of power chains however. It has a current draw of 3mA.
In terms of sound, the Mooer provides a beautiful range of bright and dark fuzzy tones, all achieved through mastery of the tone and sustain knobs. The rich and creamy, almost violin-like sound, created by the pedal fits in nicely with rock and roll genres as well as heavier rock a la Led Zeppelin or Pink Floyd.
Ramping up the sustain achieves a lovely bright sound, and adding plenty of high tone makes for a sound full of presence, creating a wall of crisp fuzz. Lowering tone and keeping sustain high removes some of that high-end and maintains fuzz, creating a muddier sound perfect for heavier chord progressions.
Dial back sustain and keeping a high tone provides a less fuzzy but full sound providing a David Gilmour-esque lead sound perfect for soloing. A whole manner of sounds can be gained from the Mooer with a little mastery over the controls and some time to experiment.
Check out the video below for an in-depth test of the Mooer Triangle Buff tone.
In conclusion, the Mooer is a fabulous little pedal for its price, proving to be quite a handful for its compact size! The range of sounds provided by the Mooer almost rivals the bigger-named fuzz brands such as the Big Muff Pi or the Boss FZ-5.
Although the pedal’s design could be a little more colourful (although that’s a purely aesthetic opinion), with a little mastery of the controls the Mooer Triangle Buff provides maximum bang for minimum bucks.
The Mooer Triangle Buff gets a well earned 4 stars from us.
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