[interview] VintageFX: Dave Archer

Here's FXDB's interview with Dave Archer of VintageFX:

How did VintageFX start?

I really started getting into the sounds of the old "Fuzz" pedals, but I was unable to get a good fuzz with anything that was out there on the market. I started with my version of the Mosrite Fuzzrite, and was so pleased, I decided to continue from there.

I was really inspired by Mike Fuller, I loved his FD2 Pedal. I spoke to him a couple times when ordering switches from him. He's a great guy. A lot of other places were helpful as well: FuzzCentral, Runoffgroove, etc.

Where do the name and logo come from?

The name is a shorter version of "Vintage Effects". VFX Pedals are largely based on designs of vintage effects pedals.

VFX has a new logo that was designed for me by an old friend, he sent me some ideas and I thought it was awesome: guitar headstock and lightning bolt... Very cool!

What sets VintageFX apart from other builders?

I pretty much do everything in-house and most pedals are made as they are ordered. I think it's kind of a unique experience to have something specifically built for someone.

VFX Pedals are LOUD! Not really designed for the bedroom.

How do you start on a new pedal?

Usually, new pedal designs come from customers, or something that I myself would like to have on my pedalboard.

Originally it would only take me a few weeks to get a pedal from inception to production. Now, because of customer orders etc. I have very limited time for R&D. I am still working on ideas that I had months or even years ago!

How do you name your pedals?

If I am designing a pedal that is close to a popular vintage pedal, I keep the name close so you know what inspired the pedal ex. FuzzRiot - Fuzzrite.

HDSF (Heavy Deavy Skull Fuzz) was inspired by the Warlocks album name Heavy Deavy Skull Lover.

Can you tell us something about the production process?

Everything is pretty much done in-house. I have one person that assists mostly with the drilling, powdercoating and final assembly.

Circuits are drawn out in ExpressPCB and then scanned to PCB's / printed & etched in-house. I then drill out and solder all components.

We do our own powder-coating, then label with slide off decals and finish with a clear protective spray.

How important is the look of your pedals?

To me it's the sound that is important, the look really means more for the end customer. To some it's important, others couldn't care less how it looks.

Is parts selection important?

There are 2 Pedals that I make that use Germanium Transistors, everything else is pretty standard stuff.

Which of your pedals makes you most proud?

I am most proud of the VFX-OD and the HDSF, mostly because they were pretty much original designs that I came up with.

Which of your pedals was your toughest build?

The VFX-OD and HDSF are probably the toughest builds. I am cramming a lot of stuff into a very limited space.

Which of your pedals is the most popular?

The ColorDrive is very popular and the HDSF is right there with it. Not sure exactly what it is that makes a pedal more popular than others.

Who uses your pedals and for which genres?

I think my gear is really popular throughout the Indie bands. Bands that like to stick to the Basic rock & roll principals. Not a lot of metal bands using VFX that I know of.

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, The Warlocks, Dandy Warhols, John Wesley of Porcupine Tree. They all love my gear.

What does the future of VintageFX look like?

VFX is really a part time thing for me. I wish I had the time needed to really focus on growing, but I have a tough time keeping up with what I have going currently.

Are you working on any new products?

I am always trying to think of things & develop new pedals... A lot of things are in the works.

Subscribe to our newsletter

Also check out Effects Database's social media accounts: