Don’t let its small size fool you—the Cry Baby® Mini Wah’s tones are just as powerful and expressive as those of its larger compadres. It’s built like a tank, and at half the size of a standard Cry Baby pedal, the CBM95 is perfect wherever space comes at a premium. Whether you’re trying to make room on a full-sized pedalboard or add authentic Cry Baby tone to your micro travel board, this pedal is a must-have.

Senior Engineer and Cry Baby design veteran Sam McRae sat down to give us a run down of the Cry Baby Mini Wah’s sound, feel, and construction. Read on.

How does the sound and frequency range of the CBM95 compare to the GCB95? Does it use a Fasel® Inductor?

Sam McRae: The Cry Baby Mini Wah is indeed equipped with a classic red Fasel inductor, but it has three different frequency ranges, which you can select by removing the bottom plate and using the internal 3-position switch.

The High setting (H) gives you the same sound as the GCB95. The Mid setting (M) gives you more of a classic or vintage sounding range, and the Low setting (L) gives you a darker sound. Basically, we took our three most popular Cry Baby voicings and put them into a housing that’s half the size. That way, you can get pretty close to the voice of your favorite standard-sized Cry Baby Wah and save pedalboard space at the same time.

Does the CBM95 have the same physical sweep range as a standard-sized Cry Baby Wah?

Sam: Yes, the physical sweep range of this pedal is the same as our standard-sized Cry Baby Wahs. What that means is the rocker can travel just as far in either direction, so you have just as much control over the behavior of the effect.

Is there anything mechanically different about the CBM95?

Sam: The potentiometer is a totally custom design that preserves the historical taper of the original pedal but while being scaled down to fit the smaller space. We employed the latest technology to give it exceptionally long life (greater than 3 million cycles), minimize noise, and retain the iconic Cry Baby sound. We also sealed it to keep out dust and any other particulates that might interfere with the wiper and the resistive element. We further reinforced the longevity of this pedal by designing the rack and pinion gears so as to provide a constant relationship between the rocker rotation and the rotation of the potentiometers shaft without any variation in the interface pressure.

We designed the CBM95 for serious, rigorous performance—it’s not just a cute little afterthought.

Who is the Cry Baby Mini Wah designed for?

Sam: If you already use a Cry Baby Wah as part of your sound but you want to free some space on your board, or you’ve wanted to try a Cry Baby Wah but you were reluctant to do so because of the footprint, then this pedal is definitely for you.

And even if space isn’t an issue on your board, this pedal sounds great in its own right. The three voicings make it very versatile.

When guitar-driven rock ’n’ roll took over the music scene in the mid–1960s, the era’s trailblazers were equipped with Herco’s original nylon pick. By the end of the decade, nearly every guitar player was using them. Their smooth feel and warm sound appealed to the pros who were recording hit records and playing on the world’s biggest stages, while their widespread availability made it an easy choice for anyone wanting to learn to play rock guitar.

The list of greats who have used Herco picks over the years is extensive, and it includes Jimmy Page, Joe Walsh, Scott Gorham and Brian Robertson of Thin Lizzy, Pete Townsend, David Gilmour, Don Felder, Tommy Bolin, Rory Gallagher, and Gary Moore. The popularity of those picks endures today, with some artists—such as Keith Urban, Steve Jones, Gene Simmons, Billy Duffy, Troy Van Leeuwen, Don Felder, Eddie Van Halen, Wilco, Queens of the Stone Age, Nikki Sixx, and Madonna–having their own custom molds.

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Dunlop has provided musicians with so many amazing tools for so long that it’s hard to remember a time when that wasn’t the case. It’s also easy to forget that this company doesn’t just have a man’s name—it was actually named after a man. And 50 years ago, that man was perceptive enough to see a need in the marketplace, smart enough to be able to design and build a product to fill that need, and fearless enough to think that he could sell that product to millions of musicians. It was indeed that fearless and adventurous spirit that brought Jim Dunlop to the US from Canada in the 1960s. As part of our 50th anniversary celebration, Jim and his son Jimmy sat down with us to talk about our company’s beginnings and most important milestones.

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The MXR® Custom Shop is all about sonic discovery. In their effort to explore the furthest reaches of tone, the Custom Shop team invites accomplished independent pedal designers from around the world to contribute their unique perspectives and design styles to the cause. The first such collaboration is the Il Torino Overdrive, a highly tweakable overdrive pedal designed with Carlo Sorasio, Italy’s top tone maestro. He works with Italy’s top musical acts, designing amps and pedals to suit their needs on the road and in the studio.

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The John Petrucci Primetone® Jazz III Pick is a whole new take on one of our most popular pick designs: the Jazz III. As the man himself describes it, “this pick’s custom bevel is based on the edge of one of my own well-worn picks. It’ll glide off your strings like glass with a loud, bold sound thanks to its super durable Ultex® material. The Jazz III tip provides precision and clarity, while the custom grip ensures ultimate control.” John’s new pick comes in two colors: tried-and-true Black and the new and appropriately badass Oxblood.

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