Origin Effects: Ask Us Anything

June 28th, 2023 |  John Dines, Jacob Holdsworth, Simon Keats, Joe Biggs,

Origin Effects Ask us Anything Questions / Answers:

  1. Do you have plans to bring back the large-format Cali76 pedals, either as a limited edition or as a standard production pedal?
  2. Will you make a fuzz pedal?
  3. What are your favourite fuzz pedals?
  4. Do the amp recreation pedals have power amp emulation as well?
  5. Any chance you’ll venture into delay/reverb pedals?
  6. I have a few of your amp recreation pedals – BASSRIG Super Vintage, RevivalTREM, MAGMA57 & RevivalDRIVE Hot Rod, and I would love to use headphones for silent practice, what’s the simplest way to achieve this with minimal additional gear?
  7. How should I set my Cali76 for more sustain?
  8. Where do you place a Fuzz Face with a Stacked Edition?
  9. Can you use the Mid Boost on the RevivalDRIVE on both channels?
  10. Would you ever make a Fender Black Panel or Marshall clean preamp?
  11. You guys use studio gear as the inspiration how about an LA2A style compressor….or even the ultimate LA2A and 1176 in the same unit, now that would be the dream comp pedal for me?
  12. Is digital taboo for you?
  13. How’d y’all get there?
  14. How do you decide what pedals to make?
  15. Have you considered doing any other pedal designs based on outboard studio effects?


1. Do you have plans to bring back the large-format Cali76 pedals, either as a limited edition or as a standard production pedal?

We don’t currently have any plans to re-issue the large-format pedals in their original form. The ultimately boring reason for them not being in production is simply that they require a lot of resources to manufacture, using techniques that are very different and more time-consuming than our current pedals. This is why we only reissued a limited run in the past. Now that a few years have passed, and we have more products in production and development, it is harder to spare the resources to make them.

We see the interest in transformer-equipped compressors and, obviously, we think they sound great. However, if we were to approach the project again, we’d prefer to do it in a way that gives us a sustainable product. We don’t want to do limited runs or force customers onto waiting lists. In short, we don’t want to reissue pedals when we know we could make them better.


2. Will you make a fuzz pedal?

The short answer is yes… eventually. We have plenty of ideas floating around that we think are cool. The difficult part is picking the best one, making sure it works, then doing all the testing and refinement that an Origin product needs.


3. What are your favourite fuzz pedals?

Collectively, we have quite the collection of fuzzes (Pictured below). Here are some answers from around the office:

Simon (Owner, Designer): “I’d go with a FuzzFace. Truth be told, for a number of years I struggled to get it to sound like it does on my favourite records. It’s a very finicky pedal with quite a learning curve. That said, I’d happily gig one now.”

Jacob (Digital Content Creator & Product Specialist): “It’s incredibly unfair to expect me to have one favourite fuzz; it basically changes as the moon does. I’m really enjoying the Thorpy Field Marshall, EHX Triangle Big Muff, EQD HOOF and Great Eastern FX Focus Fuzz. All incredibly different, all fighting for a place on my board. The Utility Percolator by Fredric Effects is also a fantastic, fuzz-like device.”

John (Product Manager): “ZVEX Fuzz Factory. I’m not a fuzz player so I don’t go in for all the subtleties of fuzz pedals. I imagine myself in a session, having exhausted all my sensible sounds and the producer says “these are boring, do you have a fuzz?”. Plug in a Fuzz Factory and people have no choice but to acknowledge “yep, that is definitely a fuzz”. It’s just a big, stupid noise. Brilliant.”

Joe (Production Supervisor): “Thorpy Fallout Cloud has been a mainstay on my board for a few years now. I have always been drawn to the Muff style fuzz circuits and the Fallout cloud is the best I have heard to date. It’s built like a tank and gives me that wall-of-sound, kick-in-the-teeth tone that suits my shoegazey style of playing.”

(Top left to bottom right) Thorpy Fallout Cloud, Fredric Effects Utility Percolator, Dunlop Fuzz Face, Electro-Harmonix Russian Big Muff, Earthquaker Devices Hoof, Great Eastern FX Focus Fuzz, Zvex Fuzz Factory, Electro-Harmonix Triangle Big Muff, Thorpy Field Marshall, Electro-Harmonix Big Muff Pi, JHS Supreme


4. Do the amp recreation circuits have power amp emulation built in as well?

Yes! Well, better than that, they have power amp recreation. Like the amps that inspired them, they include a push-pull output stage, where a lot of the overdrive is created. This is then connected to a tiny reactive load that recreates the connection between amp and speaker, giving them the “feel” of a great valve amp. It is only by recreating the whole signal path of a vintage valve amp that we are able to make these pedals as convincing as they are. That’s why they work so well at replacing a traditional amp, running into a flat power amp or into a cabinet simulator in a direct rig.


5. Any chance you’ll venture into delay/reverb pedals?

Delay and time-based effects are something we’re keen to explore. Making a reverb certainly throws a few issues up as we have only made analogue pedals so far. Time-based effects are something we haven’t made before – and are keen to get right. There is a lot of additional R&D work to do before we get something to market, on top of our usual, lengthy testing process, and the important job of not only making sure they’re good pedals but also that they make sense as Origin Effects products.

A few of the delays we hold in our collection.


6. I have a few of your Amp Recreation pedals – BASSRIG Super Vintage, DELUXE61, MAGMA57 & RevivalDRIVE Hot Rod – and I would love to use headphones for silent practice. What’s the simplest way to achieve this with minimal additional gear?

Any IR loader with a headphone output should suffice. At the office, we use the Two Notes Torpedo C.A.B M units for our demo and test rigs. We’re really happy with them and, although there are slightly cheaper options, we think the small jump in price is worth it for the features. A few of the lads in production use the Mooer Radar which also a good pedal. IR loaders usually come with a usable selection of preloaded cabs, so you should be able to get started without going too far down the rabbit hole. The C.A.B M comes with some bass and guitar cabs ready to use; you’ll most likely just want to make sure they have the power amp and preamp simulation turned off, as this is already happening in analogue in your Origin pedals.

Should you decide to jump down the rabbit hole a little, we tend to use the RedWirez IR collections for a lot of our product videos here at Origin. They have a good selection of guitar cabs and their prices are incredibly reasonable. They also have bass cab IRs which will be useful for your BASSRIG using the AMP OUT into whichever IR loader you choose.

Bonus: For guitar, try connecting the BASSRIG to a guitar cab IR. With the Super Vintage, you’ll get some fun Rolling Stones/QOTSA-esque tones.  Similar fun can be had with the ’64 Black Panel but for Fender tones instead of Ampeg. We’ve had a great time doing this.


’64 Black Panel into a Two Notes Cab M as a headphones rig. Great for guitar or bass!


7. How should I set my Cali76 for the most sustain?

Fast attack, slow release, ratio to taste. You’ll get the best results with the Cali76 first in your chain.


8. Where do you place a fuzz face with a stacked comp?

The Fuzz Face will not work correctly unless it is connected directly to the output of your guitar, i.e. no buffers in between. The Cali76 Stacked Edition uses buffered bypass, so it will need to be placed after the Fuzz Face. To be honest, even without considering buffers, it makes a lot of sense to run a Fuzz Face first as it reacts so well to playing dynamics.

Another thing to consider when pairing these two pedals is that the Stacked Edition can add monumental amounts of gain to your signal in pursuit of bonkers compression. It’s most likely that you’ll want to turn the compressor off when the fuzz is on, otherwise you may well run into feedback problems.


9. Can you use the mid boost on the RevivalDRIVE on both channels?

Yes! If you want to be able to turn the mid-boost on and off, this can be done with the external RevivalFOOTSWITCH. This will allow you to activate the mid-boost at any time, on either channel. If you don’t want to use the footswitch and want the mid-boost ON constantly, there’s a trick that can be done using a TRS jack. See the drawing and instructions below:

  1. Permanent

    Permanent Mid-Boost connector.

    Get a TRS jack plug

  2. Connect a 4k7 resistor between the tip and sleeve (1/4W is fine)
  3. Make sure the ring is not connected
  4. Plug this into the F/SWITCH jack


This will permanently enable the mid boost, while still allowing you to select the channel and bypass state from the two footswitches on the pedal.

WARNING: Do not attempt if you are not confident with soldering. This will be a five-minute job for a good amp/pedal repair technician.


10. Would you ever make a Fender Black Panel or clean Marshall style preamp?

To some extent, the RevivalDRIVE range already covers this. Although they have “drive” in the name, their Amp Recreation circuitry allows some great clean tones to be dialled in – just like the amps that inspired them – and the controls can be tweaked to access more Fender or Marshall-like characteristics.

We’re always looking to expand and improve our product range, and our Amp Recreation circuitry has plenty of potential, but we don’t have any definite plans that we can tease you with at present.


11. You guys use studio gear as the inspiration. How about an LA2A style compressor… or even the ultimate LA2A and 1176 in the same unit? Now that would be the dream comp pedal for me.

Doing both in the same pedal is probably a cost-prohibitive endeavour and our pedals already cost a lot to manufacture! They’re vastly different designs and working in analogue means, every time you add a feature, you have to add more physical circuitry. You’d end up with double circuitry that’s in a Cali76, which is already crammed in there – it’d be too expensive and wouldn’t fit in the box!

That said, if we were to make a non-1176-style compressor, the LA2A would be obvious candidate. Some might argue that a pedal company only needs to make one compressor, but our feelings on the matter ought to be fairly self-evident.


12. Is Digital taboo for you?

Absolutely not! We use and enjoy plenty of digital things on and around our pedalboards here. Many of us are using pedals from Strymon, Source Audio, BOSS and Two Notes, amongst others. All of these make excellent products and, if you want a plate or room reverb, good luck fitting an analogue version on your pedalboard! We make analogue pedals for these reasons: Firstly, it is simply what we most enjoy designing. Secondly, it’s where our expertise as a company lies. Naturally, the more analogue gear we make, the more we gain a reputation for that kind of pedal. This then influences where we draw inspiration from and how we go about creating new products and sounds.

Product Manager, John Dines’s, pedalboard. It features our RevivalDRIVE Compact alongside a mix of digital pedals.


13. How’d y’all get there?

We’re a team of about 12 and we all got here through similar but different means. Some of us have pro audio backgrounds, coming from Focusrite and Solid State Logic. Over the years, a few have come from Orange Amps, and most of us have worked in recording studios in some capacity (and still do for small projects!). For all our similarities, there is still plenty of diversity in terms of tastes and experience, which comes in handy when arguing about what a pedal should do.

Digital Content Creator & Product Specialist, Jacob, working on a recording session at Woodworm Studios, Oxfordshire. This is the studio where we record our product demos too!


14. How do you decide what pedals to make?

We have a master spreadsheet for our product ideas (and it is quite long). Almost everyone at the company uses pedals, and a good number of us have pro-audio backgrounds. This means there are plenty of well-informed opinions about which gear we should try, which rig problems need to be solved and which crazy ideas might just work.

As far as deciding which concepts actually make it into production, this varies depending on the type of product. For example, an Amp Recreation pedal needs to sound convincing, be easy to operate and be manufacturable at the quality level we’re happy with at a price someone might be prepared to pay. If it can’t do all these things, we’ll make something else. Usually, this kind of pedal starts with “here’s an amp sound we need to recreate” – e.g. a Magnatone 200 Series. We’ll get the real amp, do an awful lot of testing, then determine what’s required to recreate it in pedal form, and check it meets the criteria above.

For something like a new flavour of overdrive, there is more scope for serendipity. Plenty of the greatest guitar sounds were created through experimentation and finding creative uses for existing equipment, so we also make time for this kind of design process. When an interesting idea appears – for example, driving loads of signal in the output stage of a Pultec EQ – we’ll sit down and figure out what parts of that sound are most usable for guitar or bass, then choose a product specification that helps you get to the good noises.

Sometimes, like in the case of our Adaptive Circuitry, we’ll come up with a piece of technology that exists almost in the abstract. It’s then a matter of finding places to use it – identifying or inventing circuits that would benefit from it.

One common theme that runs through the development of all our products is that we have company full of pedal, amp and pro audio nerds that spend a lot of time saying to each other “have you tried this bit of gear?” “if only my pedal did that” and “wait ‘til you hear this amp”.


15. Have you considered doing any other pedal designs based on outboard studio effects?

The answer to this should be somewhat unsurprising… Yes! The company started from a desire to make studio-quality sounds available to ordinary guitarists and bassists and we’re always looking at studio gear to inspire new products. Because so many of us come from a pro audio background, even our more typical guitar products employ pro audio standard for noise, build and calibration.

You could even say the Adaptive Circuitry in the Halcyon Green is like having a little sound engineer in your pedal, automating your pedals frequency content in response to playing dynamics!