The one that started it all, the legendary MK1 Tonebender. Produced by Sola Sound in reasonably small amounts, you are more likely to pick-up rocking horse sh*t than one of these!
Used by Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page and famously also used by Mick Ronson, the MK1 really has it's own distinctive tone. Less dense than a MK11 but very defined and chords ring out beautifully whilst single notes also react superbly to touch. A very musical fuzz that can make you work sometimes but when it's good it is very, very good!
Please check out the 2 amazing demos further down this page by Paul Cuddeford with original David Bowie and the Spiders from Mars drummer Woody Woodmansey.
A very different circuit to all following Tonebender's, the MK1 used an OC75 and 2 Texas Instrument 2G381 transistors. Although OC75's are still reasonably easy to obtain, TI 2G381's are a different matter and usable ones are super scarce. Why did it have TI 2G381's in it? Likely for no other reason that they were cheap at the time. The circuit itself is often considered by far the trickiest of the Tonebender's to build well and this could be one reason why Sola Sound dropped the MK1 and replaced it with the far more stable MK11. The Attack pot generally has most of it's sweep up to around 12 on the dial, and then onwards it's on full fuzz, there are a couple ways this could be changed but personally I don't mess with circuit and love it as it should be. If it ain't broke........
Most originals I have played tend to 'gate ' the sound pretty early, resulting in shorter sustain than some other germanium's, although this isn't always the case and depends bias of the circuit. The MK1 should be able to clean-up nicely, again adding to the great range of tones available.
I tend to use AC125's or OC72's in the MK1 as both of these have proven to sound excellent and have generally low leakage but I may use other nos germaniums depending on the best sounding transistors I have in stock. Where possible I use Hunts and Mullard capacitors although sometimes I may also use vintage WIMA or another high quality brand.
A selection of the finest vintage capacitors from manufactures such as Hunts and Mullard
Highest quality electrolytic capacitors.
Carbon Comp resistors throughout.
Neutrik Sockets, Alpha pots, high quality Stomp Switch
Strip board soldered board, like the original
Tough Grey Hammerite painted Eddystone / Hammond box
Bulgin style chicken head knobs.
Individually numbered / signed Pedal
Life-time warranty on all Williams Audio parts and work
I'm proud to have 2 Demo's of the Williams Mk1 by the amazing Paul Cuddeford with Woody Woodmansey on drums. Paul is a seasoned pro player and has worked with many greats over the years, Google him for his credits. Woody Woddmansey is best known for his work with David Bowie and the Spiders from Mars. He played on Bowie's albums The Man Who Sold the World, Hunky Dory, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars and Aladdin Sane.All copyright of both tracks owned by Paul Cuddeford
Worldwide Shipping £10