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Unread 12-19-2010, 11:14 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Marshall guvnor MK1

I bought a Marshall guvnor pedal back in the 90s i thinkwhen they first came. At the time i was using a rack system so i just used to use it at home with my little practice amp . When i moved out of my parents home i left a lot of pedals and leads in the loft .
A few months ago Pops was clearing the loft out and dropped a box off with loads of goodies . Marshall guvnor , boss CE3 , MXR mocro amp , Dod 250 OD, etc etc
I used the marshall guvnor last night at a pub gig and was blown away with the sound .

Squier vinatge vibe 50s BOSS TU2 , GUVNOR , AC30 cc2x ..
Does anyone else here still use this pedal . To my ears it sounds better and is more versatile than a tube screamer .
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Unread 12-20-2010, 04:37 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

Yeah I do.

It's easily my favourite Distortion box. Sounds just like a cranked Marshall. It has that midrange thing going on that other distortion box's don't have. Gary Moore used it for the Still got the Blues album.

I also have the old BluesBreaker Pedal which is a seriously awesome pedal. I use that with an acoustic guitar and it sounds fantastic.

I just don't get the preoccupation with the Tube Screamer. It seems every internet geek and his dog has to have one, not only that,but get one that is modded. I have one and I don't think it sounds great unless you use it as boost, or to get that instant SRV sound at the 12th fret.
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Unread 12-20-2010, 08:39 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

I've had my eyes peeled for one of those for a while now. I have a Danelectro Daddy'o thats based on the same circuit and has been modded to the original spec.s, but it's not the same.
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Unread 12-20-2010, 12:09 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

I bought a carl martin plexitone a few months back and was very disapointed .It sounds like your amp with a distortion tone in the sound as oppsed to part of it ..Imagine playing with two identical amps , one is clean the other with the carl martin turned on ,,thats how it sounds ..
Cant wait to get rid of it
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Unread 12-21-2010, 08:10 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Harpum View Post
I bought a carl martin plexitone a few months back and was very disapointed .It sounds like your amp with a distortion tone in the sound as oppsed to part of it ..Imagine playing with two identical amps , one is clean the other with the carl martin turned on ,,thats how it sounds ..
Cant wait to get rid of it
What does that have to do with a Guv'nor?


That aside, I have one and it is possibly the best overdrive out there still to this day.
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Unread 12-21-2010, 11:43 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

The carlmartin was sold to me in the reviews as the best OD pedal on the market and would give you that plexi tone tone in a stomp box ..It lied on both counts ...Guvnor is 100% better
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Unread 12-22-2010, 01:46 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

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Originally Posted by Rob Harpum View Post
The carlmartin was sold to me in the reviews as the best OD pedal on the market and would give you that plexi tone tone in a stomp box ..It lied on both counts ...Guvnor is 100% better
Gotcha. Wasn't following at first
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Unread 02-15-2011, 05:35 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

These are a great sounding pedal. The circuit is actually quite basic, it shouldn't be too difficult to build.
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Unread 02-15-2011, 05:37 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

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Originally Posted by Marcos View Post
These are a great sounding pedal. The circuit is actually quite basic, it shouldn't be too difficult to build.
Anyone have a schematic?
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Unread 02-15-2011, 05:56 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

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Originally Posted by Gtarzan81 View Post
Anyone have a schematic?
Try the general guitar gadgets webpage
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Unread 02-15-2011, 05:56 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

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Originally Posted by Gtarzan81 View Post
Anyone have a schematic?
http://www.generalguitargadgets.com/...8044a841b3e85a

Found this. They also sell or did sell a kit.
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Unread 02-16-2011, 02:45 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

I hunted down and bought one. Just received it a couple of days back. Still to put it to the test. Will report back what I find
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Unread 04-10-2011, 08:13 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

I use a Guv'nor. This is by far the best overdrive pedal I have ever used. I wish I had one back in the day when I was using a JMP 2204.
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Unread 04-11-2011, 12:03 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

I hunted one down as well, along with a Marshall Shredmaster.
I feel it sounds good, but the Shredmaster is waaay better in every way.
To be fair, I haven't really spent a lot of time with it yet. But I got them both at the same time, and the difference is quite wide really, IMO.
Though, it is still a nice sounding pedal
Yes, the TS808 (True Vintage Mod from Analogman) that I have as well, is different, I wouldn't say better or worse than the Guv'Nor.
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Unread 04-11-2011, 12:19 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

I have one and use with both of my Marshall and Fender amps. I set it to kick in more gain with the Marshalls. I can almost match the foundational tone perfectly and then kick in more gain. With my Fender amps...well I use it to give me a Marshall type sound in general. It works great for both applications.
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Unread 11-24-2011, 04:43 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

Hi,

New to the Forum.

I have just had the opportuniy to compare a UK made Guvnor Mk1 with one of the later Far East versions, and the difference is really noticeable - I was shocked! The UK one sounds more natural, with more depth and clarity, like a Marshall stack basically. The Far East one sounds similar but much more closed in and fizzy, more like a distortion pedal than a stack.

I looked inside them and the latter basically has lower quality components.

What a shame as I had fallen in love with my mate's UK one and was chuffed when I found a mint Guvnor on Ebay, only to discover it simply doesn't sound the same. As they say, once you go there you can never go back!

Can I just confirm - as I am not a techie - that the circuit diagram linked above is for the Mk 1, not the Mark 2?

BTW, on the subject of overdrives and distortions, I have been really impressed by the Made by Mike pedals, and at the risk of being pelted with rotten tomatoes, I still love my humble Digitech Bad Monkey for straightforward overdrive duties.

Cheers!
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Unread 11-24-2011, 05:26 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

I used to use a Guv'nor (black case) in front of my 2203 (for sale on classifieds at the moment btw). I mostly used it as a clean(ish) boost with eq. Sounded awesome. Unfortunately I was talked into trading it for a Pod.

I took the precaution of cribbing the circuit in the Guv'nor before it left me, so that I could build a replica in the future. I never quite got around to the replica, but I might be able to compare my schematic with the one linked above, for what it's worth.
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Unread 11-24-2011, 05:30 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

Thanks Gareth, that would be really helpful!
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Unread 11-24-2011, 08:15 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

Right, I found the schematic I worked out from the innards of the old Guv'nor.

The good news is that the two schematics are almost identical. Main difference is that I laid mine out less logically . Topological variations aside I can only see three component values that are recorded differently:

Component _ My version _ JD Sleep version
C2 . . . . . . . . . 120pF . . . . . . 100pF
C5 . . . . . . . . . 9.6nF . . . . . . .0.01uF
C13 . . . . . . . . 4nF . . . . . . . . 0.0047uF

I think that the lower value of C2 in negative feedback on input amplifier in the JD Sleep version will make the overall tone slightly brighter: the top end roll-off starts a little higher.

I'm prepared to say that C5 is close enough to call the same thing (certainly within tolerance). Probably not a significant difference.

It is quite feasible that I misread or misrecorded the value of C13. To me 4.7nF seems a more plausible number than 4nF.

I also have the dual op-amp TL072 and wrote down that all the LEDs were red 3mm jobs.

Hope this helps.
Gareth.
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Unread 11-24-2011, 09:02 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

Thanks so much Gareth!!!

I am the world's worse with a soldering iron and definitely not a techie, but I might see if Made by Mike might look at producing this for me.

Gareth, can I ask your thoughts on why the Far East made Guvnor Mk1's don't sound as good? Could it simply be down to lower quality componants such as not using blue metal film resistors (so I have been told), using plug in connectors on parts of the PCB or maybe inferior op amps, etc? By and large I am guessing it is the same circuit design so I can only think it comes down to companent quality?

One curious thing I noticed in my side by side test was that setting the Far East one on exactly the same pot settings I got significantly different performance and had to greatly tweak the pots to get a similar sound to the UK one. This seems odd if the circuits and components are by and large similar, the same settings should yield the same or very close sounds in supposedly the same pedal?

Thanks again,

E
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Unread 11-24-2011, 09:53 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

I have one, never even tried it, but maybe I will now. It was given to me by a friend in 1990 when I lent him a Peavey 2x12 and it was stolen so he gave me the pedal as compensation.
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Unread 11-24-2011, 10:12 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

Well, now I'm in the realms of guesswork, having only ever seen the insides of one Guv'nor.

I don't believe that putting a socket on a pcb is going to make a huge difference. That sort of thing is going to be extremely subtle. If I had to put my money on the largest sources of difference it would be, in order:
  1. Quality of TL072,
  2. Quality of capacitors,
  3. Quality of other components,
  4. PCB layout/sockets/wiring.

I've put the IC up front because these things have hundreds of "components" inside, and the difference in sound between something costing pennies is a world apart from something costing ten or a hundred times as much. Of course, which sound you think is better is going to be subjective, but I'd be surprised if the cheapest option was favourite.

I think that the later Guv'nors came in a smaller package? I'm guessing that this involved a redesign of the PCB, although this is unlikely to be a big effect.

As for differences in response of controls, I imagine that component tolerances are going to make even two nominally identical boxes slightly different? I checked on General Guitar Gadgets and it claims that the schematic is for an original Guv'nor. So maybe the later ones were more significantly different?

Interested to know what other people think.

Cheers, Gareth.
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Unread 11-24-2011, 10:19 AM   #23 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

Thanks Gareth.

To be clear, I was comparing a Mk1 UK Guvnor with a Mk1 Korean Guvnor, not a Mk2.

On looking at the guts of the UK and Korean ones, even to my eyes, the components look cheaper in the latter and, as you say, there is every chance it is a cheap op amp. What I can say with absolute certainty is that the two sound noticeably different with the UK one so much more tranparent and realistic (i.e. the UK sounds like a Marshall stack and the Korean a more generic distortion pedal).

Cheers!
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Unread 11-24-2011, 10:20 AM   #24 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

IIRC, the Guvnor was basically the preamp of an old Marshall Lead 12 in a box. Those gained some fame as standalone preamps/boosts during the eighties.

I've played the originals on occasion, and owned a Mk2 for several years, but eventually sold the Mk2 as other pedals did the same job better (OCD for one). The tone controls on the Mk2 were very nice. Maybe if you took a Mk2 and disabled the extra circuitry (low end boost), made sure to have the same op amps and LED's as the original, then you'd get similar results.

It shouldn't be surprising that the same control settings on the Mk1 and 2 would sound different, Marshall probably used different pot values and tapers in each.

BTW, the Mk2 was built like a brick. Maybe the components aren't the same quality as the Mk1, but the build quality of the Mk2 is as good as anything else out there. Nice heavy duty case as well.
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Unread 11-24-2011, 10:37 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

I have one of these.....got one with the original box and all.....
Have to admit - too many pedals and too little time.....!
But as they say, every pedal has its day
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Unread 11-24-2011, 11:32 AM   #26 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

Quote:
Originally Posted by enfetish View Post
To be clear, I was comparing a Mk1 UK Guvnor with a Mk1 Korean Guvnor, not a Mk2.
To be honest, I wouldn't know which version I had back then. It was very second hand even back in the mid '90s when I got hold of it. Could be that I've documented the Korean version!

I suspect that its unlikely that the circuit was changed much during the manufacturing move, and as you say that probably puts all differences down to component quality.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MKB View Post
It shouldn't be surprising that the same control settings on the Mk1 and 2 would sound different, Marshall probably used different pot values and tapers in each.
That's also possible between the UK/Korea build. I imagine that parts would be sourced differently and things like tapers are likely to vary considerably?

Cheers, Gareth.
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Unread 03-03-2012, 09:54 AM   #27 (permalink)
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Marshall guvnor MK1

Does anyone know How to identify that a Guv'nor is a Mk1 , and that it is UK made ?
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Unread 03-03-2012, 10:02 AM   #28 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

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Originally Posted by Marshall50w View Post
Does anyone know How to identify that a Guv'nor is a Mk1 , and that it is UK made ?


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Unread 03-03-2012, 10:10 AM   #29 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

Yep, I have a Marshall Guv'nor Mk1. It's a permanent feature on my pedal board. You can set it for low level overdrive / crunch through to some great high grain smooth saturation, especially if you use it alongside a compressor. Mine works well with an MXR Dyna Comp.

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Unread 03-03-2012, 11:50 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Re: Marshall guvnor MK1

+1

these are killer boxes .....
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