This Boss DF-2 was sent in by a client who loved the quirky feedback this pedal is capable of but wanted to make it more versatile and musical. For those of you who haven’t used one of these pedals, well…. it’s unique. You turn on the pedal and you get a Boss DS-1 style distortion and if you hold down the footswitch the pedal will sample your guitar at the input and generate a “feedback” pitch based on that note. It’s cheesy but can be fun when used properly.
The first part of this mod was to remove the distortion from the guitar signal. The idea is that most people have their own overdrive/distortion and wouldn’t want to sound like a Boss DS-1. Another added benefit is that all of the controls (Level, Tone, Distortion) that were once shared between the guitar signal and the feedback signal are now dedicated to just the feedback. You can sample a clean guitar and generate a feedback signal with complete control over volume, brightness, and gain. That’s part of the standard Overhaul and more info and a video can be found on the FXdoctor DF-2 page.
After that the pedal had an additional output jack installed to send just the dedicated Feedback tone without any guitar signal. This is a great option for running the feedback through separate effects, loopers, delays, and into another amp. If that setup is too complicated another option is to use the left toggle switch to kill the dry guitar signal when the pedal is activated. This allows you to just have the feedback pitch when the pedal is on; great for layering tones in noise bands and creating huge loops. The other toggle switch switches off the seasick-vibrato effect in the feedback.
Overall this was a challenging project just due to space constraints. If you’ve never popped the back off of a DF-2 it has a large circuit board filled with through hole components which takes up more room than something like the surface mount components in newer pedals. Fitting in two toggles, an extra 1/4″ jack, and additional switching/output circuitry required some careful planning and the sacrifice of the battery compartment.