Walrus Audio Eons Five-State Fuzz: What is it?
Walrus Audio’s Five-State series should be familiar by now. Thus far it has delivered two superlative overdrive and distortion pedals, each offering five different modes for each. The further addition of a Blend control allied to a powerful EQ made for two very versatile guitar effects pedals.
And so we’ve had the overdrive pedal, the distortion, now it is time for the fuzz. The Eons has a sandy-coloured enclosure with a big ol’ horned Markhor goat illustrated by Adam Forster on the front, subscribing to the unwritten rule of guitar effects that says dirt pedals are most successful when marketed as beasts somehow adjacent to the animal kingdom – Walrus and Forster used a bull for the distortion, a mammoth for the overdrive.
The setup largely conforms to that of the others in the series. There are controls for Bass and Treble on either side of a five-way Mode dial. Circle through the latter from positions 1 to 5 and you’ll have a traditional silicon clipping fuzz, silicon clipping fuzz with extra oomph in the lower registers, germanium fuzz-cum-distortion, the “dynamically dark” LED clipping diodes, and a final mode that pairs hard-clipping silicon with softer LED and soft-clipping diodes.
That final mode is described by Walrus as “the rowdiest of the modes with tons of gain: compressed, loud, and angry”.
The Eons similarly has Volume and Gain dials but it departs from the formula in one respect by having a variable Voltage control as opposed to the Blend. This makes sense for a fuzz pedal when you have the option of running it big and open at 18V internally or choking it at 3V for a gated fuzz sputter. And, of course, there is the promise of lots of middle ground to be had along the Voltage knob’s direction of travel.
Walrus Audio Eons Five-State Fuzz: Performance and verdict
Of all of the dirt pedal variants, fuzz is the one that tends to split opinion. There will be some who want it raw, throaty and spiky, and others fizzy and warm. Open, sputtery, there are so many options. Many players just simply can’t decide on one, and that’s why they end up with a drawer full of fuzzes, and why out of all the Five-State pedals so far, a fuzz seems to make the most sense.
This is both for those who can’t make their mind up about fuzz or at least hear the value in all kinds of fuzzes. Eons is a compact size, and when you factor this in with its five modes and the top-mounted jacks then it makes for a pedalboard space saver.
Given that we loved the Blend control on the previous Five-State pedals, it was a bit of a shame not to see it here. How might it have worked with fuzz, dialling in some texture and hair, would have been interesting, so much so that we might have sacrificed one of the Bass or Treble dials for single-tone control.
The operative word is ‘might’ because the way the Eons is configured you could scarcely want for anything. The first port of call is selecting your Mode, and here is plenty of variety from the clipping options. Those who like their fuzz to behave a little like a distortion, for it to clean up on command from your electric guitar’s volume control, will love Mode 3.
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The EQ controls are not for decoration but the difference between the trad silicon fuzz of Mode 1 and its bass-boosted counterpart in Mode 2 could be very handy when swapping between humbuckers and single-coils.
Similarly, the darker voicing of Mode 4 could take some of the vinegar sharpness of a Telecaster’s bridge humbucker, or fill out some chords. And Mode 5 is as they say it is – great fun if you’re of a mind to dime things and make some noise.
Once you’ve dialled in a mode, adjusted the Bass, Treble and Gain to taste, head for the Voltage control and set how open you want it. Subtle adjustments are rewarded with lots of usable fuzz sounds, and it’s remarkable how easy it is to dial this in.
Whether you like it rough and wild or a little more tucked in and sophisticated, the Eons can make that fuzz happen. Five fuzzes in one makes good economic sense, too. Can’t make your mind up about fuzz? This can help. Mind made up already? This might open it to all new possibilities.
MusicRadar verdict: The Eons Five-State Fuzz does not disappoint, rounding out the series with a super-versatile complement of fuzz sounds and all the controls you could want for tailoring them to your needs.
Walrus Audio Eons Five-State Fuzz: The web says
“We also get a lovely dynamic germanium fuzz in Mode III, and a slightly darker LED clipping from Mode IV, both of which add drive/distortion utility to the sound palette. But it’s the last mode, V, that’s the most raucous of all on offer here. Its combination of hard clipping (silicon transistors) and soft clipping (LED and silicon diodes) is mightily impressive.
“This is a fuzz for all seasons, with great texture to it, that can be nicely tailored with the active boost/cut tone controls to deliver ripping fuzz with a raspy edge, further enhanced by just rolling the voltage back a touch.”
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Walrus Audio Eons Five-State Fuzz: Hands-on demos
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Walrus Audio Eons Five-State Fuzz: Specifications
- ORIGIN: USA
- TYPE: Fuzz pedal
- FEATURES: True bypass, 5 modes, adjustable voltage, active EQ
- CONTROLS: Volume, Gain, Bass, Treble, Voltage, Mode switch, Bypass footswitch
- CONNECTIONS: Standard input, standard output
- POWER: 9V DC adaptor (not supplied) 100 mA
- DIMENSIONS: 67 (w) x 125 (d) x 58mm (h)
- CONTACT: Walrus Audio (opens in new tab)