Who is Shin Suzuki, and where does he get off asking six hundred bucks for a stompbox? We know little of Suzuki. Word is he’s in Tokyo and does service and repairs on many of the Dumbles that Japanese tone freaks bought up in the 1990s and knows what he is doing. As a sideline, he builds pedals to his own Zen-inspired levels of detail.
And he charges six-hundred bucks for this pedal because it is the most incredible, perfect distillation of what experts agree is “the Dumble sound”. An elusive essence-rare type amp requiring an agonizing wait—and around fifty grand in today’s dollars to call your own.
Dumbloid Standard and Special
Plexi Marshalls, Vox AC’s and Tweed Fenders are all wonderful amps that helped define Rock ‘n Roll. And it’s a really great time for guitarists of all stripes because for mere money, one can buy a bunch of boutique amps and pedals that pretty much nail those sounds. One amp that has never quite been tamed into a clone is the mythical Dumble. Some have tried to decipher its circuit and tones but all have fallen short—until now.
Shin Suzuki has taken all his Dumble wisdom and experience and created the Dumbloid Series of pedals. This is no easy feat, since there are about eight different models of Dumbles and they are usually custom voiced for the specific player who ordered it. Suzuki has taken the essence of all these different Dumble models and Judo chopped them into two Dumbloid pedals—the Standard and the Special. Both models sport identical knobs; Drive, Accent, Tone and Volume.
The Dumbloid Standard has more gain in the midrange and sharper highs, while the Special has an additional toggle switch—the famed Jazz/Rock voicing switch from the legendary Overdrive Special. In the “Jazz” position the switch gives an overall “rounder” sound, while the “Rock” position provides a softer characteristic for the mids, especially in overdrive. All levels of gain sound fantastic in each model. Uncompressed clean for the ultimate in chickin’ pickin’, and so many shades of overdrive—from medium gain to psycho distortion. After 45 minutes with a Dumbloid and his favorite ’52 Blackguard, Brad Paisley proclaimed the Dumbloid “The most responsive and amp-like pedal I’ve ever played”, and as you probably know, he’s played ‘em all.
How does Shin Suzuki do it? Are his building sessions a Japanese tea ceremony level of formality and the highest quality parts, or are Dumbloid circuits constructed from recycled VCR components? We don’t know because his circuits are covered with a generous application of some sort of epoxy-goo—just like Mr. Dumble himself used to keep prying eyes away from his magical circuit designs. After getting a listen to either Dumbloid, pedal we didn’t care.
If this is a tone you crave, you need this pedal. Yes, it’s expensive but it’s worth every penny. They are in very limited supply, order one now. You will thank us later!
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