Here’s your typical PR hype: “because guitarists deserve, and WANT, some anus-stretching.” (We know computer musicians, remix artists, drummers, keyboardists, etc. do, too.) The Metasonix Butt Probe — sorry, the “TX-2” — is a $549, hand-made, hand-painted tube-based distortion effect, complete with fist, ream, and scre parameters.

Tube-based so that it has a lovely, warm, rich, high-quality sound, right? Wrong. Tube based so it can suck as hard as tech can. According to Eric from Metasonix, the unit uses “three type 4BN6 beam modulator devices. They were intended for
use in crummy TV sets as FM detectors, and were NOT meant
for audio processing applications. They SUCK. Really, really, badly.” (See photos, and yes, normally tubes rock.)

There’s so much more to say about the Butt Probe. I could point out that, due to limited quantities of those s****y tubes, there will only be 100 of these audio-f***ing units. I could muse about why artist Sarah Combs, the creator of the lewd but somehow alien butt probe exterior, is otherwise fixated on adorable (if well-endowed) cat people. But I certainly can’t make this the butt of any jokes. Eric beat me to all the lewd humor. Thus, I’ll break normal CDM policy and run the press release. Press people, take note: your PR could read like this, instead of the breathless drivel you normally send us. (Or, you could experiment more with Butt Probes — I mean, TX-2s.) Read more for the release and closeup of the tubes on the Butt Probe . . .

Eric writes us:

June 30, 2005


It is UP YOUR BUTT. Yee-haw.

Metasonix introduces an all-new effect pedal which is aimed at the
“Butt Guitarist” crowd.

Because guitarists deserve, and WANT, some anus-stretching.

The Metasonix TX-2 is entirely made of vacuum tubes. To be specific,
three type 4BN6 beam modulator devices. They were intended for
use in crummy TV sets as FM detectors, and were NOT meant
for audio processing applications. They SUCK. Really, really, badly.

Only METASONIX knows how to apply these strange devices to audio
processing. We know how to ream those guitar-sucking buttboys out,
real good.

The TX-2 can accept guitar, mic or line-level signals, though
it works best with line level. By utilizing the inherent
non-linearity of the 4BN6 tubes, the TX-2 offers a broad
range of distortion effects. Carefully adjusting the FIST
and REAM controls allows the user to vary the screen-grid
voltages of the first two tubes–FIST controls the first
(input) tube, REAM the second tube in the string.

This changes each tube’s gain and distortion behaviour in
a very drastic fashion. It can be adjusted from a mild
tube-ish warmth, to horrid screaming broken-amp ultra-distortion
from HELL.

Instability is inherent in a circuit having this much gain,
and the third tube provides an extra way of modulating the
distortion. Basically, it is wired as a very bad bandpass
filter. Filter center frequency is controlled with a “Vactrol”
type optical resistor, and swept continuously with a low-frequency
oscillator built into the TX-2. The sweep may be disabled by
turning down the SCREW knob or by plugging an unassigned 1/4″
plug into the CV IN jack. If the latter is done, the SCREW
knob will tune the filter manually, giving a vast range of
NAUSEATING tonal effects not obtainable with any of the existing
effect pedals on the market.

Wait, we take back the butt-guitarist comment. The TX-2
works best on complete music tracks or drum machines as a
remix tool. Screw those damn guitarists.

in Northern California. Because they’re HAND-PAINTED, THEY ARE
ALL DIFFERENT FROM EACH OTHER. (Each one, a different variety of
disgusting.) We have taken to smearing asscreme brown paint and
scribbling epithets on them.

As an extra special “feature”, the Butt Probe’s front panel has
offensive cartoons by comic artist Sarah Combs, and its owner
manual contains EXTREMELY offensive cartoons by “Retarded Animal
Babies” creator Dave Lovelace. Dave’s cartoons are so disgusting,
we will NOT make them available anywhere else. (He outdid himself.)

SPECIFICATIONS: Power consumption: 12 volts AC ONLY at 1.0 amps.
Frequency response: plenty. Distortion: damn skippy.
Size: 8×4.5×2.5 inches, weight approx 4 pounds.
Inputs: one mono audio, one control voltage (sweeps filter),
both 1/4″ TS. Output: STEREO audio, 1/4″ TRS.
Output is usually >20 dB hotter than input. Not recommended
for use with guitar amp input, suggest line level input.

Anal lubricant is not included.

We feel that the TX-2 BUTTPROBE is far more extreme than the
famed Sherman Filterbank, and far more tube-freaky than your
mother’s enema kit. Face it, butt-probing is a worldwide
everyday amusement. It works for you, we can tell. And clearly,
Americans LOVE to have their butts probed. Look at the freaks
they vote into political power. Proper use of the TX-2 BUTTPROBE
can be infinitely more satisfying than watching Tucker Carlson
mopping his ass-crack with your girlfriend’s hair.
Your girlfriend might like it too.

Only 100 pieces of the TX-2 will be made. It’s a limited issue.
Retail price in USA is $549.