Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Schematic Zoom PD-01, maxon od-820 or Klon Centaur

Discussion in 'The Stomp Box' started by andyeffect, Feb 6, 2006.

  1. andyeffect

    andyeffect TDPRI Member

    Feb 6, 2006
    I wanted schematic or internal pictures (inside) of the pedals:

    Zoom power drive pd-01
    Maxon od-820
    Klon centaur overdrive.



  2. strat_and_tele_guitarist

    strat_and_tele_guitarist Banned

    Nov 10, 2003
    There is no schematic online of the pd-01 that I know of, and those that have the KLON will NOT post it, since it is a boutique outfit, and rightly so.

    The maxon schematic is floating around somewhere, search at for it.


  3. jony

    jony TDPRI Member

    May 12, 2005
    ahh its good to be back.

    I can try and post pics of my PD-01 for you.
    When i get back home

  4. andyeffect

    andyeffect TDPRI Member

    Feb 6, 2006
    does my ok friend thank you, do you think he would be a clone of the klon?

  5. TheGoodTexan

    TheGoodTexan Doctor of Teleocity

    Apr 28, 2003
    Nashville, TN
    If he's a clone of the klon, I gotta meet this guy. I bet you can see right through him.

  6. strat_and_tele_guitarist

    strat_and_tele_guitarist Banned

    Nov 10, 2003
    I think he meant 'is the pd-01 a clone of the klon' which is the rumor on the 'net. ;)

    I can say absolutely positively, no -- it is NOT anywhere near being a clone. The Klon circuit isn't way out there or anything, it can be reproduced, but the pd-01 "aint't it" ;)

    Take care,

  7. Tim Bowen

    Tim Bowen Poster Extraordinaire

    Mar 17, 2003
    Atlanta/Rome, Georgia, US
    Bill Finnegan sounds off.

    For those who might not have read it elsewhere, what follows are the recent words of the Klon's designer. Submitted purely as a source of information, I'll keep my personal politics and feelings on the matter to myself.


    Here are the things I'd like to say for your consideration:
    1. At the risk of stating the obvious, I have absolutely nothing to do with the prices of my units sold used on Ebay or anywhere else. For the record, I'm in complete agreement with those people who feel that the prices that some of the units have brought, and apparently continue to bring, are simply absurd, and I hope that any of you reading this will weigh in with a correction if someone ever claims in another thread that Finnegan is ego-tripping on what his units go for used, as I've read a few times here and there and simply decided to let go. Yes, it's gratifying that a lot of players really like the thing, a thing I killed myself for almost five years to design and bring out, but no, I don't feel that spending $6- or $7- or $800 on a used unit when I'm selling them new (yes, with a turnaround) for $329 is all that rational. As I was just typing "$6- or $7- or $800" I found myself revising those figures downward in my mind just to where I, personally, felt rationality kicking in, and you know what? I couldn't peg it to a particular figure. Around ten years ago, when the business was just starting to become the freight train it's been ever since, I happily plunked down $2000 for a near-mint late-plexi 50-watt head . . . in red, with the gold logo; a '69. Does it sound better than the 1970 small-box 50-watter, black with aluminum panel, that I'd previously bought from the same guy for $475? They sound a little different, but I wouldn't say the red one just plain sounds better. Did I behave rationally spending $2000 on it, top dollar at the time? As a few of you have said, essentially, who the hell knows? What I can tell you is that it pleases me a lot to have it, and I think it would do so as much or almost as much if it were now worth $1000, say, instead of whatever ridiculous sum it actually is worth. Quick note for anyone of the B-and-E persuasion: the few nice/valuable guitars and amps I have are elsewhere in secure storage, not where I live.
    2. Some of the components in the circuit could be characterized as off-the-shelf, and some couldn't, but even if they all were, I don't agree with the guy who claimed - repeatedly - that a high-school kid could build something that sounds the same. No-one, whether high-school kid or wourld-class engineer, has to my knowledge been able to really replicate the sound of the circuit in the eleven-plus years the unit has been out, and believe me, it's not for lack of trying; I'll have a little more to say about this below.
    3. Here's an essential point - or at least I consider it an essential point - that some people who have posted on this thread seem to be either missing or pointedly ignoring: when you buy something along the lines of a pedal or amp or guitar or what-have-you that's at all original in design, YOU ARE NOT SIMPLY BUYING THE COMPONENTS THAT WENT INTO IT. You are buying, essentially, the result of someone's vision, expertise, and hard work in putting those components together in a particular way to achieve particular objectives. You are buying something built by someone who understands it from the inside out because he or she or they DESIGNED it, and to expect, on the other hand, to get the same results from the same circuit with the same components, unless it's built exactly the same way in every important regard by someone who thoroughly understands what is and is not important and why certain things have to be done in particular ways - that is, by the designer, and not by someone who has invested a few hours trying to knock a circuit off - well, both my intuition in general and my experience with this circuit in particular tell me that's not realistic. A quick example: a few months ago, just to satisfy my curiosity, on a statistically-significant number of non-production boards (I build, listen to, and keep boards all the time) I made the tiniest change imaginable - you'd snort derisively if I told you what it was, and certainly my expectation was that I wouldn't be able to hear any difference from the sound of the production boards. But guess what? There was and is a perceptible difference, and I proved that to myself with blind testing - having someone else mix in the experimental boards with a large number of production boards and then put all these boards, one by one, on my testing jig for me to listen to while I was ten feet away in front of the amp facing the other way; I identified every one of the experimental boards but one. I'm not trying to impress anyone with how good my ear is - after all these years with just the one product, I think it would be pretty sad if I couldn't hear the subtlest nuances - but rather trying to drive home a very straightforward point: even the smallest changes are at least potentially audible, and if someone - the would-be knocker-off - does even just a few of those small things in ways the designer learned the hard way not to, then the same results won't be obtainable. All of the really good amp and pedal designer/builders get this, the really good pickup designer/winders get it, the high-end audio designer/builders get it, and I would suggest that it's in the interest of the consumers of these and any other such products that you/we get it as well.
    4. The point made about how putting the guts of one of the units in a plastic Radio Shack case would affect unknowing listeners' perceptions of the sonic attibutes of the circuit brings me right back to blind testing: the ONLY way, as far as I'm aware, to factor out auto-suggestion and really determine whether or not you're hearing what you've thought you've been hearing, is to do extensive blind testing - hours- or days- or weeks-long, with someone else doing the switching, preferably in real time, between however many alternatives in such a way that you yourself can pick up no cues/clues of any kind as to which is which aside from the sound coming out of the amp; either you guess right much more often than not, in which case you can feel confident that there is a discernable difference, or you don't, in which case you can't.
    5. Although they certainly have to save up for a little while to do so, full-time pro players who don't make much money buy units from me all the time, and believe it or not, I have always tried to keep the thing as affordably priced as possible given that I have to make some kind of a living at something that I now have over fifteen years of my life in (design work began mid-1990, and production began the end of 1994). Here are a few relevant facts: with the custom-cast enclosure, custom-made pots (not off-the-shelf, and I have to order them in thousands quantities to get the per-piece cost down to only fairly outrageous), custom knobs,
    custom sheet-metal bottom, and super-high-quality everything, whether custom or not, the material cost of the unit - the aggregate cost of everything that physically comprises the unit - is, by my best estimate, SEVEN-TO-EIGHT TIMES that of virtually every pedal I've seen that's built with all off-the-shelf stuff and housed in a standard diecast or clamshell enclosure. Until my price increase in June of last year, unless I'm really mistaken many of my competitors were making more profit per pedal selling what they make at wholesale prices in the $129-149 range than I was making selling mine direct at the full retail price of $279. With regard to that price increase, please consider the following: date of previous price increase to $279: February or March 1998. Date of price increase to $329:
    again, June 2005. Interval: call it 7.3 years. Amount of increase in June of last year: $50. Fifty bucks as a percentage of the previous price of $279: 17.92%. Annualized price increase from February or March 1998 to June 2005: 2.45% (17.92 divided by 7.3). And . . . with very few exceptions, everything I have to buy to build units with just keeps creeping up in cost, year after year after year. Please understand that I have no problem with anyone feeling that the unit is simply too expensive for them, that either they can't afford it or simply don't feel it's worth what it costs. I do have a problem, however, whenever someone claims - either disingenously or because they're unaware of the foregoing - that I'm simply reaming my customers and laughing all the way to the bank; hopefully you can see that this is not the case.
    6. With regard to the so-called "Klones", I've never heard either the Austin Gold or the Power Driver; I've been told by several guys that they didn't feel that the former sounded very much like the Centaur (please note that I'm not dissing that pedal or offering any opinion of my own at all, simply noting that I've been told a few times that the two sound different), and I know nothing about the latter, not even who makes it. I have heard the Maxon OD-820, and because it's made by a huge Japanese company, and one that seems to be trying on some level to rip me off (cf. the marketing of the pedal as a clone of mine, somewhat effective marketing it seems), I don't see any reason to shy away from telling you all that I truly hate the sound of it. Somewhere around here I have three or four pages of detailed notes on the listening I did (yes, including some blind testing) when someone loaned me theirs, but suffice it to say that I don't feel that it sounds anything like the Centaur and I don't feel it's a good-sounding pedal, period. For me, the worst part of this situation with the OD-820 being perceived as sonically either the same as my unit, or at least very close, is thinking about the God-knows-how-many-times a player has heard another player playing through one and thought "So THAT'S what the Klon sounds like." Oh, almost forgot - like to know the circumstances under which that one was loaned to me? A guy, a full-time pro player, called me a couple of years ago, told me that he'd bought it because he'd been told that sonically it was the same as mine, and that he hadn't wanted to wait for mine, and that he'd had it for a few months, played a bunch of shows with it, and liked it but didn't love it. Then, apparently the night before he called me, his band was on a bill with another band they'd never played with, and the guitar player in that band had a Centaur, and in hearing that guy's sound he concluded that they weren't at all the same. He ordered a unit, and while we were talking he said that until he received it he was going to park the Maxon and go back to something else he had (can't remember what), so I told him that, for obvious reasons, I was interested in hearing what it sounded like and asked him if he'd be willing to send it to me to check out for a few days. He said sure, and that's how I got to put the OD-820 through its paces.
    7. The Centaur's circuit, as has been noted online by several people who have reverse-engineered it, has absolutely nothing in common with that of any Tube Screamer. I'm on record, and have been since way before the Centaur came out, as not being a fan of Tube Screamers or, subsequently, those of the many Tube Screamer-derived pedals I've had occasion to hear; I think they all have a number of specific shortcomings sonically that pertain mostly to the basic topology of the circuit. In a very real sense, in setting out to design what eventually became the Centaur, I was trying to design the UN-Tube Screamer, a pedal the circuit of which addressed and corrected every sonic problem I felt was present in them. As time went on during the design process other goals and criteria evolved, but "UN-Tube Screamer" was my original overarching objective with regard to the circuit. Let me emphasize that I'm fine with anyone liking the Tube Screamer or any other pedal better than the Centaur; it's difficult for me, however, after four-and-a-half years of really grueling circuit design to come up with something completely original, to be fine with someone just casually assuming that I and my design partners copied any part of the Tube Screamer's circuit, or any part of any other circuit, for that matter.
    8. To those of you who have posted on this thread expressing an interest in reverse-engineering the Centaur's circuit, and for those who in your posts have basically challenged someone else to do it, I have several things I would like to remind you of: I have fifteen years of my life in this, including almost five during which I not only didn't make a penny at it but whittled my life savings down to nothing at the very end in a do-or-die effort to get the thing out before I went broke. This is how I make my living, and I have no other way at present of making a living. From the beginning, I've tried to design and build something really special, and I work very, very hard in trying to make every unit as good as I can make it. I have never gotten rich off of the Centaur, nor will I, no matter how hard I work. I'm not going to plead with you to refrain from destroying my livelihood, but I am going to appeal to whatever sense of decency you may have.
    I appreciate the time taken by anyone and everyone who reads this long post, and I hope that some of you will bookmark or save it so that you can paste any part of it you feel to be relevant in another thread.
    I will try to look at this thread sometime in the next couple of days if I can to see what people's reactions are to what I've written.
    Bill Finnegan

  8. frankus

    frankus TDPRI Member

    Nov 20, 2008
    Chelmsford - England
    Thanks for that post. I've not seen Bill Finnegan's comments before and I feel a little wiser for reading them.

  9. ruger9

    ruger9 Poster Extraordinaire

    Dec 31, 2004
    Hackettstown, NJ does have the schem for the Klon, if you dig around. Alot of those guys over there have cloned it.

    If the Klon sounds anything like the OD-820, I don't want one. Didn't love the OD-820.

    I do find it pretty amazing that no one has cloned/tried to improve the Klon for selling, hundreds of TS clones/improvements out there, but no one has ever tried to do anything with the Klon circuit, which is apparently unique.

    I've got my Timmy. I don't need no stinkin' Klon (or anything else.)

    I won't even get into the whole "clone wars" issue.

  10. SackvilleDan

    SackvilleDan Tele-Holic

    Feb 8, 2009

    Thanks for posting Bill's comments on the Klon. It puts my perspective of him and his product in a new light.

    I can understand the price increase used... I own a Tim and Timmy, which I thankfully bought from Paul Cochrane himself. Had I known how much I would have liked them, I probably would have paid the outrageous price they go for used. If you like something, and you want it bad enough, buy it. I am glad that I bought the pedals through Paul, so that I could in some way support him through this whole Danelectro fiasco.

    If I were Bill, I too would keep the Klon circuit very close to my chest to protect my livelihood (he supposedly coats the circuit in epoxy to prevent reverse engineering).

    That being said, I still can't afford a Klon right now; I'd like to try one out, and when funds permit, I'll get on his list.

  11. giantslayer

    giantslayer Tele-Holic

    Nov 27, 2006
    Colorado Springs, CO
    I think the Klon Centaur has enough of a reputation behind it, that people would still buy it and take pride in owning a real Klon, even if someone else makes something just as good. That said, it would still hurt him if word got around that someone had an exact clone.

  12. gitarzan

    gitarzan Tele-Meister

    Mar 21, 2003
    Columbus Ohio
    I play thru a Zoom power drive pd-01. it's an incredible pedal.

    I have no idea if it's anywhere near like a Klon, but I bought it as itself. An awesome Boost/OD.

  13. ruger9

    ruger9 Poster Extraordinaire

    Dec 31, 2004
    Hackettstown, NJ
    Have all of the "Tube Screamer clones" over the years stopped Tube Screamers from selling? Doesn't look like it to me.

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