Chunk Systems Octavius Squeezer Sound Samples and Patches



Quick points:

* Pedal appears to have been discontinued and out of production.
* There exists a mysterious .11 firmware for download but I do not know what was changed in the .11 firmware or how it's different than the .10 firmware most everyone already has.
* CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD FIRMWARE VERSION 1.0.09, 1.0.10, and 1.0.11 (all in one ZIP)
* What I do have is a TON of helpful information, a lot of my own custom patches, as well as the Paul Turner / Jamiroquai patches. Scroll down to the bottom for those. Enjoy!

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Here are some sound samples recorded with my Chunk Systems Octavius Squeezer bass synth processor. Click the cgraham.com logo above for links to my other pages. You can also link to a somewhat detailed thread at TalkBass.com about the Squeezer.

Note that this fully analog, digitally controlled effects processor is not just a "synth" pedal. It is actually a multieffects processor that includes a VCO sound generator with VCA and portamento options, LPF/BPF filter with static/envelope/ADSR/LFO options, awesome Brown Dog squared fuzz with gate, and the option to basically route your clean input, filtered sound, VCO, and fuzz in a variety of methods, sometimes to more than one place simultaneously, and often accidentally back into itself causing feedback loops. For example, run regular fuzz into filter. Or fuzz and clean blend into filter. Or clean into filter with a blended fuzz. Or VCO and fuzz into filter. Or the VCO and filter into the fuzz. And on and on. I haven't even thought of all of the possible routing options. And then save them all into 50 available on-board memory presets.

The downside is that the unit is probably THE most difficult effects box I've ever had the opportunity to use. And I've used a lot of programmable effects, including the MAM Warp9 rack filter which previously held the award for most difficult to use due to it's odd re-use of control knobs and quirckly LED indicators. The issue is that there's so many routing and blend options and so many paramters that are either hidden from view or are in view but have nothing to do with the options you've enabled that its difficult to comprehend what they all do. Add to the mix some poor programming (no error trapping for effects save failures or file write failures) and it makes for a difficult-to-impossible device to use.

Additionally, many of the features aren't laid out in an intuitive manner. There's "source input" to choose your VCO waveform, then VCO pitch, but the rest of the VCO and VCA options are way down the paramter list after all of the VCF options. And by default empty patches have all of the VCO/VCA/VCF settings at 0 so they're all off by default. Combine all of this with poor naming of some of the features, such as VCO->VCF= On/Off which needs to be ON to hear a "dry" VCO signal (counterintuitive as I want a dry VCO, not VCO into the filter) but you send it through a wide open low pass filter. Otherwise your only other option is to send it through the fuzz. But no option to send it direct to output that I could figure out. And then there's a separate VCO level, plus all the other VCO/VCA stuff all that control just the VCO signal. Plus a zillion filter paramters. And all the confusing routing options. It's a mircale anyone can figure how to program usable sounds out of this unit. I'm sure my comments sound harsh, but this is SERIOUSLY difficult to program! I've seen comments from users that have had this pedal for years and still only use it as a basic programmable fuzz and filter because they cannot figure out how to get VCO synth sounds out of it, so it's not just me.

For whatever reason my unit has stability issues, random lockups, and displayed "FATAL ERROR 08" once. I've tried multiple power sources as power sources are often blamed for the unit's stability issues which I've seen some other users report. It's out of warranty but Richard at Chunk offered to look at it for me an graciously replaced the main board and even paid return shipping. I was only out the $40 USD insured one way, and turaround was only a few weeks total and the service was super stellar. If you encounter this same error, try a higher mA power source, and remove the SD card if you have it installed. I think some of the issues are related to SD card use.

My quick review of the unit:

  • Pros: Supposedly fully analog signal path but digitally controlled (same thing the MAM Warp9 and Electrix Fitler Factory claimed) and it really does get that thick analog feel to the sounds it produces, particularly the fuzz and filter, 50 presets plus the ability to save/load more from SD media to the internal memory, actual VCO oscillator that tracks seemingly well but not perfectly, VCO includes PORTAMENTO features which is an awesome and pretty unique feature in bass synth pedals, super DUPER awesome gated fuzz circuit from the Brown Dog, excellent filter from the Agent Funk with full envelope, ADSR, and LFO options, including tap-tempo support for beat synced LFO fun, tracks a BOSS OC-2 OCT1 in front of it well (though the VCO sounds identical regardless of the sound of the signal triggering it).
  • Cons: The most impossibly difficult to use interface I've ever seen; only two hardware buttons makes switching through patches quickly pretty challenging (one cycles up through the preset, the other bypasses); At $599 retail it is overly expensive compared to similar bass synth products currently on the market in 2011 such as the $299 MarkBass Super Synth or the $799 Roland GR-55. No USB or MIDI IN to support an editor application (or MIDI control, or MIDI Clock sync) so you're forced to use the challenging hardware GUI. Generally poor programming of the firmware (poor logic, no error notifications such as failed file writes), ADSR has an extremely slow retrigger which only works well with really long gaps between notes making the ADSR mostly unusable; ENV downsweep mode lacks enough control to get really good sounding downsweep synth sounds; while the manual is huge it lacks any seriously clear newbie step-by-step here's-how-to-create-patches-from-scratch and instead you're left to decipher signal flow charts and comprehend the relationship of the paramters on your own. Seriously, this thing is hard-to-impossible to use. There's no ability to jump instantly around presets, you're forced into a linear low-to-high cycling which could be an issue if you need more than one sound per song. While I think the VCO tracks notes pretty well the tracking isn't lighting fast  and the VCO tends to glitch and drag on the decay so don't expect to be able to play 16th notes at 160bpm, and playing octave jumps can confuse it so it needs fairly clean breaks between the octave jumps particularly in the higher registers; since virtually nobody seems to use one of these there's no significant online group/forum where users are discussing this in detail or sharing patches at all (with the exception of mine below) so you're on your own; if you need repair you have to ship it back to Austrailia ($16 USD uninsured, $40 USD insured US Postal). 
Conclusion: A pedal that holds so much promise and so many interesting tones, but is so horribly difficult to use.  With that said, I've bought and sold a lot of other synth effects including the AKAI Deep Impact, Korg G5, and Super Synth but have kept this one around. Though it's usually sitting unused on my shelf. The envelope filter sounds really fat and thick. The fuzz is good. Pair the two and you can get some fairly synthy sounds, blend an octave down VCO for some added thickness and beef. However, programming this device is truly and seriously difficult, more than I can imagine most people can stand. Sometimes more than I can at times.

A couple of usability tips:
  • "Protected" - for each of the original presets, this is set to "On", it's near the very end of the list of parameters - you can't save any changes to a preset until you switch it to "Off". This also prevents you from loading patches from the SD card as they will load to the first unprotected patch on the pedal. Assuming you have one. If you don't, no error message is displayed and you're left scratching your head as to why the @#$ isn't working.
  • "Show All Params" - This is set to "Off" by default. Switch it to "On" so you can see everything that goes into making each sound. When it's on, you'll only see a few of the parameters, the ones that Chunk Systems think you might want to change in a live situation.
  • You can more quickly scroll through the parameter list by pressing-and-holding the parameter knob, then twisting while holding to zip through the paramters in either direction. The manual probably covers that but I missed it and was banging my head cycling linearally through the list in one direction by repeatedly pressing the paramater knob - which would also occassionally change a paramter value as it's hard to press that knob without also turning it slightly.
  • Once you nail down a patch you can then turn off "show all params" and control which are hidden from view. Simply hide the one's you won't be using such as LFO and Beat, and whatever other parameters you don't use in the particular patch. Means less params to cycle through when you want to edit it.
  • Don't forget you need to manually save your changes made to patches. Otherwise you risk losing them.
Last tidbit. Richard at Chunk Systems once upon a time mentioned to me he was working on rewriting the firmware for this unit from scratch. But that it would need to be done in assembly due to the restrictive memory in the hardware. That was years ago and nobody ever heard anything new about this. In June 2014 I inquired with Godlyke, their US distributor, and they had the following information to share:

"Last year Richard from Chunk announced that they were sold inventory for all their existing production units.  Rather than do a new run, Richard decided to put production on hold with the idea in mind to possibly re-design the pedals or come up with a new design that incorporated them all as a kind of analog multi-effect. To-date I have not heard any updates regarding this project.  We still have an Octavius Squeezer in stock – if you are interested, please let me know…   Cheers,  Kevin Bolembach  Godlyke, Inc.  www.godlyke.com "

So it sounds like the Squeezer has been discontinued. Hopefully that drives up the resale value in the future like most of the other bass synth pedals have seen. :)




Octavius Squeezer



CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD FIRMWARE VERSION 1.0.09, 1.0.10, and 1.0.11 (all in one ZIP)


MP3 Patch Settings (right-click and save) Description Instrument Used Interface Used Notes
n/a Dry reference signal Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), then with my clean Ampeg sim enabled which is the BOSS Concert 810 sim with EQ after but no other effects. I'll use this same clean/dry signal and Ampeg amp sim during testing of the Squeezer in the sound files below.
n/a
Factory presest Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. I just noodle through the 30 factory presets to give you some ideas of what some of the possibilities are for the sounds this unit can produce. There's VCO>Filter sounds, straight fuzz, a bunch of straight envelope filter sounds, and way too many LFO based warbly mush though some of the more subtle LFO stuff is excellent where it only audibly appears on long decays like a vibrato.
n/a Raw waveforms Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects or amp sim), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. Sounds are the raw VCO waveforms set with portamento but no active filtering or fuzz or clean blend. Saw, then Square cycled through the various duty cycle options, then triangle, then trap. You'll note the raw waveforms tend to have some noise/artifacts in the high end. Normally these will be masked with filtering.
Building Block patches. These are constructed using the basic signal paths as described in "Description". But note there are no real paramters enabled. So anything that indicates "filter" has the signal routing to the filter but the filter itself is set with Cutoff=Max, Resonance=0, and no envelope or ADSR applied and thus no filter audilby active until you modify the filter parameters. Which is why you won't audibly hear filtering in the "building block" sound samples below.
n/a Various Building Block patchs (more below) n/a n/a This file includes 18 patches I created. They include the raw waveforms in the previous sound sample, plus what I believe to be all of the possible signal routing combinations that are 100% wet (no dry blend) such as VCO>Filter, Fuzz>Filter, Fuzz Only, but does include some VCO & Fuzz blends. You will have to adjust the various VCO, VCA, VCF, and Fuzz paramters to your liking but the basic signal routing is there and programmed with the appropriate premixer/postmixer/output routing and levels.
Saw only Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. SAW into wide open LPF filter, no fuzz or blend.
Square 50% only Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. Square with 50% duty into wide open LPF filter, no fuzz or blend.
Square 25% only Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. Square with 25% duty into wide open LPF filter, no fuzz or blend.
Square 12% only Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. Square with 12% duty into wide open LPF filter, no fuzz or blend.
Square 6% only Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. Square with 6% duty into wide open LPF filter, no fuzz or blend.
Triangle only Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. Triangle into wide open LPF filter, no fuzz or blend.
Trap only Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. Trap into wide open LPF filter, no fuzz or blend.
Fuzz only Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. Input signal straight to fuzz. 
Fuzz > Filter Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. Input signal into fuzz into the filter.
Fuzz > Filter & Fuzz Blend Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. Fuzz into the filter using premix set to fuzz, then the unfiltered fuzz blended into to mix using postmix. You can balance the fuzz>filter with the Output level and the pure fuzz with the postmix level.
VCO > Filter > Fuzz Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. VCO into the filter then into the fuzz.
VCO > Fuzz > Filter Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. VCO into the fuzz then into the filter.
VCO & Fuzz > Filter Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. Blended VCO and fuzzed input signal into the filter. Balance the VCO with the VCO level and the fuzz with the premix level.
VCO > Filter & Fuzz Blend Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. VCO into the filter, then the fuzzed input signal blended. Balance the VCO with VCO level and the fuzz signal with postmix level.
Filter > Fuzz Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. Input signal into the filter which then feeds the fuzz. Gives a wide range of interesting sounds depending on the filter parameters used and the amount of gain used to feed the the filter (premix level) which then pushes the front end of the fuzz circuit even harder. Note I run the effect only, then into the Ampeg sim, then with an OC-2 in front.
Completed / Custom Patches built leveraging the building block patches above
Filter > Fuzz CUSTOM Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. A custom patch using the filter into the fuzz scheme. With hard attack it will sound like pure fuzz, but on the decay you'll get an interesting filtered sound. Low attack and you'll get some amount of filtered sound on the attack before it drives into pure fuzz. Basically a touch-responsive resonant yet fizzy character added to the fuzz to give it some uniqueness. Note I run the effect only, then into the Ampeg sim, then with the OC-2 in front.
Quick downswept saw Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), Octavius Squeezer is in front receiving my bass signal. First attempt at some real bass synth sounds. Using a saw into a quick ADSR dowswept filter. I haven't figured out how to get the envelope on the ADSR filter to retrigger quickly or easily. So you'll have best results with slower, more deliberate plucking VS fast passages which will sound poor due to the filter attack frequency being so low in the sound spectrum (as heard in this clip). The ADSR is an exellent idea as you have much more control over the overall filter. But from my current testing the envelope filter perfoms much, MUCH better. It's much more natural performing to your performance. But it's also more rubbery sounding and less precise compared to what the ADSR filter should sound like. I need to crack the case on ADSR performance to really unleash the killer synth sounds this box should be able to make.
63" patch Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GT-10B USB BOSS GT-10B used as a clean interface for recording (no effects), BOSS OC-2 with OCT1 soloed into the Octavius Squeezer. This is a custom synthy fuzz>filter patch I was building for a song my band has written. Gives a thick, square wave sound with a little envelope to give it some flavor. You'll hear in the clip the envelope reacts mildly to attack strength due to the OC-2 eating up a lot of the attack/decay naunces of the original playing. That's the one downside of the OC-2 into the fuzz>filter, it gets a little flabby and compressed sounding, but that also lends to the synthiness of the overall sound I think.
Super Squared Fuzz Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GR-55 BOSS GR-55 with a basic bass amp sim.This is a custom filter>fuzz patch I created while experimenting with overloading the fuzz circuit with a static filter. Basically I push the premix in and set a seriously resonant static filter and push that into the fuzz. It causes the fuzz to drive into serious squarewave territory. As if you though the Brown Dog circuit would get any more synth squared than it already was. Note quite as synthy as a BOSS OC-2 into the fuzz, but I think it's approaching that quality.
Sputtery Fuzz Lakland Duck Dunn P bass picked GR-55 BOSS GR-55 with a basic bass amp sim.This is a custom filter>fuzz patch I created while experimenting with UNDER-loading the fuzz circuit with a static filter. I haven't quite perfected this patch yet as it behaves differently across the fretboard (some notes barely register, others are more thick and powerful), and it behaves differently depending on the strength of the signal sent into the Squeezer. If you want to adjust this try adjusting the frequency of the BPF filter I've set, or adjust the premix signal which feeds the filter. Interestingly, note the fuzz gate is OFF in this patch, yet it still gets a super short, sputtery decay.
N/A
NiN Closer Lakland Duck Dunn P bass fingered GR-55 Pretty basic stuff attempted here. Bass into Octavius Squeezer using the Gobstopper patch very slightly modified into a basic GR-55 amp sim and hexachorus. Then the same thing using the BOSS OC-2 and Korg G5 using Voice 1.  I didn't slave over the actual learning/playing of the NiN synth line but it's close enough to use as a comparison against the original I think. Does it sound exactly like the studio recording? Definitely no. Would it work for a live cover of the song? I'd say either one would work just fine.
Fuzz that morphs to VCO Lakland Duck Dunn P fingered GR-55 Basic fuzz that morphs into a fuzzed out square VCO.  Both the clean and VCO go into a static, slightly resonant filter. VCO is faded in via VCA controls. You have to play somewhat staccato or the VCO just continues and doesn't cut off. But lets you generate a variety of interesting weird-O fuzz type tones depending on how you play into the effect. Put an OC-2 in front and play high up on the neck for even more fun!   Bass into Squeezer into Roland GR-55 bass amp sim. For the second run I put the OC-2 in front which gives the raw fuzzed bass a different tone. Added some Addictive Drums loops for some added fun. Kind of tricky playing to a click with this particular patch since it takes some amount of time for the VCO to fade in.
N/A Sputtery Fuzz 2 N/A N/A Same patch as the original above, but with the input gain to the fuzz circuit much higher. Gives a super huge, super thick, super tight, SUPER gated monster synth fuzz. More gated than actually using the gate - figure that one out!
Unstable Oscillator N/A N/A Starting to explore the actual oscillator a bit more and came up with this "unstable" patch. The oscillator continues to trigger even when there's no input. Stick it through a distortion for best results. Then play a note, stop, play a note, stop, play a note, stop, and you get a weird-o synth tone. You still get the actual notes you're playing, but then a bunch you're not. I can't personally see this being useful as it's a bit too much like noise, but maybe you'll find a musical context for it.  Clip has my Zoom UF-01 Ultra Fuzz into my EHX English Muff'n for the distortion, then I turn on the Squeezer with this patch, then blend in some Addictive Drums so you aren't incited to commit crimes from listening to my noise making. :)
N/A Various Custom Patches
N/A N/A Some custom patches I've created over the past few months. Sorry, no detailed descriptions, and due to the 8.3 file naming format the names certainly won't be too helpful. Give them a try and let me know what you think!
N/A MOFAT Custom Patches
N/A N/A Some custom patches created by a Squeezer user named Tim. Here's his description: Mo Funk - A Square wave from the VCO through an envelope filter blended with dry.  Mo Pass Filter - Simple Lo Pass Filter. (I'd like to work on this one to get a nice soft OD sound if possible but haven't finished playing with it yet.) Fizz Fuzz - Fuzz through a BPF modulated by the LFO. Added Clean Blend. LFO has MOD=ON to drastically increase the depth of the modulation. Play with Left Switch on MOD.
N/APaul Turner custom patches
N/AN/AThese patches come pre-installed with the elusive BETA firmware version 001.011 that was installed on my Squeezer but is not publicly available. I'm fairly certain I've modified these patches, but cannot say for certain.
Freak Downstairs
N/AN/AUser Florrent from France sent me this patch, which was apparently provided from Chunk Systems, but which isn't available in the factory presets.
N/AThe Regular Show Intro
N/AN/AI took the Freak Downstairs patch, removed the LFO, then tweaked the tone, and happened upon something that resembled the awesome resonant filter sound in the intro to The Regular Show. Try playing a long, held single note, then after the filter peaks for a while, slowly roll down your instrument volume to let the filter close again. Let me know what you think!


 

Last updated 02-07-2016 

 

 
 

 
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