The Binary Dual Fuzz is based on the Darkglass® Duality Dual Fuzz Engine, a bass pedal first released in 2013 that features two parallel fuzz paths that can be blended together in any ratio for a variety of textures. It was traced by Aion FX in 2021.
The first path is similar to the Microtubes B3K, a series of CMOS hex inverters that provides a warm, vintage-flavored drive. The second one is extremely simple, yet unlike anything else we’ve seen in a pedal: an open-loop op amp (in other words, no feedback resistor to limit the gain) followed by a pair of series diodes to act as a rudimentary noise gate and to give it a sputtery “velcro” decay. The open-loop op amp trick is something that a lot of tweakers have no doubt done by accident in some way or another, but Darkglass has managed to harness it for musical and it actually sounds really good.
In addition to the blended fuzz paths, there is also a tone control and volume control that are applied to the fuzz after the two paths have been blended. This is followed by a clean blend that balances the fuzz (after the tone and volume) with the unadulterated clean signal. It’s more complicated than the average drive pedal, but it doesn’t take long to get the hang of it.
The Binary is a direct clone of the Duality based on our own trace, which is covered in our tracing journal. Some extra power filtering has been added, but otherwise everything is true to the original.