From looking at some YouTube videos and looking over some circuits - it seems like there is a basic type of Layout to follow in the same way Fuzz Pedals have that "Fuzz Face/Tone Bender" type Layout... so the Overdrive will take on the Blues Breaker type basic Layout...
Is this just because of the Laws of electronics dictate that things are done this way OR is it because you can't get the desired "effect" by doing it another way?
I have seen the different types of guitar Tube/Solid State Amplifiers and how they can vary but when it comes to Effect Pedals, there doesn't seem to be the variation in design/circuit?
Please tell me i'm wrong and don't know what i'm talking about...
There are lots of fuzz pedals based on the FF/TB layouts, and maybe there are lots of overdrive pedals based on the BB layout (although I'm not familiar with it).
But what's the desired effect of which you speak? If it's overdrive itself, then there are also layouts like the Electra (relatively clean single transistor boost plus clipping diodes) and variants of whatever the Emerson Em-Drive Overdrive is based on (single transistor overdrive).
Similarly, just off the top of my head, there are lots of Big Muff variants and a few Fuzzrite ones.
So it's not so much the law of electronics, more that people like the sound of a circuit but want to tweak it to improve it, or they start with one of these basic layouts and want to expand it to create something new, or they simply want to pass off an existing circuit as their own creation.
But yeah, there are a limited number of ways you can overdrive a signal.
Plus if something else already gets the job done, you'd be inventing a new (and possibly more complex) way of getting the same (or very similar) sound just to invent something new.
Sorry for being a bit vague... but when you look more specifically at the schematic's of the different effects you start to see a bit of a pattern as to 'how' the designer has arranged things from the output of the transistors/OpAmps to then get the signal to change into the desired result, being:Fuzz, O/Driven, etc.
Trying to see if that, you want to design an overdrive pedal - you're not going to try to do that with a MN3008 IC for a start and the Circuit you use is more than likely going to be on a tried and proven layout to give the signal enough frequency bandwidth and of certain impedance to act upon your guitar amp that it amplifies an already strong input.
So if you look at any of the overdrive pedal schematics - you would only see the values of the resistors, the microfarads of the caps, etc., change and not so much the actual "layout".
Y'know what I mean now...?
Since doing some more searching I stumbled onto the Honey-Hole of what I am trying to get across that no-one wants to go near...
I found a different Kit producer doing PCB's that will come in handy for a number of Pedals...! Looking at different popular Pedals I actually found a Schematic of a PCB for a Tube Screamer that will also make -with different components - the Robin Trower Overdrive PLUS about Five Other Pedals!
Maybe I should have said: Using different components, How many Different pedals can you make using the same PCB (and therefore, schematic layout)???
Apparently, quite a few... Pick a design... Alter as many components as is needed and...Voila! A New Pedal! No wonder some Brands have a Heap of different pedals... they're all just basically the same thing!
Can't someone come up with an Original "Sound, Design, Circuit, that no-one else has put together yet..?
People invent original topologies all the time. Most of them sell worse than the tried and true and don't justify their RnD costs.
If an original topology actually sounds different, chances are guitarists won't like it. If it doesn't sound different, why bother? Originality is not an improvement, and the audience will never know the difference unless you tell them.
I'm not saying that's how it should be, but that appears to be how it is.
To be fair, good tone at a reasonable price is pretty much a solved problem.