No electric guitar through my ms20clone

I had the opportunity to try an electric guitar on my ms20clone recently, and was disappointed with nothing. Nothing being the result, and I was therefore disappointed. :joy::neutral_face: Seriously tho, I am still a noob and I realize Iโ€™ve missed something. The guitar worked through my opamp vcf (Moritz Klein). Plug in and play no problem. I got nothing out of the ms20. Should I be buffering a guitar before it get to the ms20?

You need to play a key. I think the VCA stayed closed, which is why you heard nothing.

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Definitely buffer and probably boost too. The guitar signal is both too weak and of much higher impedance (at least 1Mohm) to be accepted as is in a line input. There are designs for a module that does just that, but you can also use pretty much any guitar effect pedal for buffering/boosting.

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So I could just patch it through a pedal first? Like a compression pedal? What sort of schematic would I need to make an input with enough impedance?

I used this from Sam.

But even without my guess is that you should still be able to hear a tiny something

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You have several options:

  • Use a guitar pedal (a compressor, or a boost, or any pedal that has a volume control that gives you a boost over unity should work, a multieffects device should also work).
  • Build something like a stompbox adapter module (see also this version, and a PCB version) that you can use it to boost the signal.
  • Build a simple booster for guitar. You can use an op amp, but even a simple transistor design should do as in the classic LBP-1 (stripboard layout here).


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A cheap preamp like the Behringer D120 is a simple and cheap fix, saving you from reinventing the wheel. The 120 is two channel and usually around ยฃ20-25 new.

But reinventing wheels is fun!


Well I do have a compression pedal. I use it for my rhythm wolf. The kick output is really weak so it evens everything out. I donโ€™t actually have a guitar so I canโ€™t test it out immediately, but the next time the guitar is around I will hook it up to the pedal and try out the ms20 again. I just added bandpass and high pass. The band pass sounds awesome. I never used one before.

And if you donโ€™t believe me, would you believe John Conway?

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