What are the Best Guitar Distortion Pedals?

best guitar distortionDistortion is such a personal choice. If you are in search of the best guitar distortion pedals, this list offers some solid options.

Distortion is a type of overdrive, or more accurately, overdrive is a type of distortion. Usually, when we talk about distortion, we’re talking about overdrive with a very high gain that’s very fuzzy and compressed. It’s a different, more controlled sound than FUZZ though, and it’s created in a different way as well. Continue reading “What are the Best Guitar Distortion Pedals?”

Ibanez Tube Screamer TS808DX

ts808dxIbanez Tube Screamer TS808DX

The latest iteration of the line of Ibanez Tube Screamer pedals is the TS808DX. This modern version has some cool features not seen before. The TS808DX is actually two pedals in one, the Tube Screamer and a clean signal boost. It features the same three control knobs you probably know from earlier versions: Overdrive adjusts the amount of overdrive added to the signal; Tone adjusts the level of high end frequencies present in the signal; and Level adjusts the volume of the pedal to match it with the signal when the effect is disengaged. Continue reading “Ibanez Tube Screamer TS808DX”

What are the Best Budget Guitar Fuzz Pedals?

budget guitar fuzzGuitar fuzz pedals with great tone, but without putting too much of a dent in our wallets.

Fuzz pedals are a great addition to any guitar player’s pedal board. They have a distinctive sound that’s different from overdrive and distortion. Everyone from Black Sabbath to The White Stripes use them, and after more than 50 years, even non-guitar players are pretty familiar with their sound, and have come to expect it. Today, we go over a list of fuzz pedals that just might give you that perfect fuzz tone that you’ve been looking for, without forcing you to set aside too much of your paycheck.

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Dunlop Silicon Fuzz Face Mini Blue

Dunlop Silicon Fuzz Face Mini BlueDunlop Silicon Fuzz Face Mini Blue

The Dunlop Silicon Fuzz Face Mini Blue is a modern design of the legendary Fuzz Face. As the name suggests, this pedal is housed in a much smaller package than its vintage bigger brother. This is a bright and aggressive pedal built with vintage spec matched BC108 silicon transistors. There are two knobs: Volume and Fuzz, which is where you’ll dial in your sound. Continue reading “Dunlop Silicon Fuzz Face Mini Blue”

What are the Best Guitar Digital Reverb Pedals?

best guitar digital reverbLet’s take a look at a popular effect — reverb — and see if we can find a pedal that is a perfect fit for your style.

Reverb is one of the most important tools available to a musician. It allows you to actually change the landscape and the size of the environment that you are in. You can set it to sound as if you are close to a wall, far away from it, or without any walls at all. Reverb got its start with the plate reverb, which is a large metal plate with microphones attached to it, to create and pick up reverberations. The next type was the spring reverb that was built into many amplifiers, making it very popular and well known to guitar players. Today, digital reverb is growing in use, as technology expands in the areas of analog-to-digital converters, resolution, sample rate, bit rate, etc.

Modern digital reverbs can be significantly hi-tech and meticulously crafted, to sound like any type of reverb, natural or unnatural. They can make use of convolution reverb, which is impulse response models of actual rooms. Throughout countless hours of practice I was always grateful for spring reverb. Now we’ll look at a few of these digital reverb pedals and see if any stand out.
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Budget Guitar Chorus Pedals – What are the Best?

budget guitar chorusBudget guitar chorus pedals — let’s talk about them, take a look at the classics, and see which one might provide you with the tone that you’re looking for.

So, what we’re covering today are some selected budget guitar chorus pedals, any one of which could be an asset to your collection. We’ll list some of the classic pedals that have proven themselves over time, as well as some modern products. Chorus is one of the oldest guitar effects that’s used to create a richer, thicker sound and add subtle movement to guitars, keyboards and bass. Continue reading “Budget Guitar Chorus Pedals – What are the Best?”

MXR M234 Analog Chorus Guitar Effects Pedal

MXR M234 Analog Chorus Guitar Effects PedalMXR M234 Analog Chorus Guitar Effects Pedal

The M234 Analog Chorus is another very popular stomp-box created by MXR, a company that’s been making effects pedals since 1972. It’s a 100% pure analogue, and it uses a Bucket Brigade chip to delay the signal and create the warm, classic, chorus effect. The MXR M234 is a straightforward product that gives you five control knobs to generate your own personal sound. Level sets the volume of the pedal and acts as the wet/dry mix. Continue reading “MXR M234 Analog Chorus Guitar Effects Pedal”

Germanium and Silicon in Fuzz – What’s the Difference?

germanium and siliconGermanium vs Silicon? This is often an intensely debated topic. Learn the difference between these two types of diodes and how they affect your fuzz pedal’s tone.

Let’s talk about the difference between germanium and silicon transistors and what it means to guitar players and audio in general, especially fuzz.

The Fuzz Effect

Fuzz is a type of distortion that guitar players use. It is most often found in an effect pedal and it creates a buzzy tone that is associated with an overdriven amplifier or a torn speaker. Transistors play a vital part in the design of this effect and their germanium and silicon diodes can sound quite different in the final result.

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Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer

Ibanez TS9 Tube ScreamerThis legendary pedal is used by hundreds of the greatest guitar players out there, including Metallica, Stevie Ray Vaughan, John Mayer, Trey Anastasio, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, and The Edge

The original Ibanez Tube Screamer is one of the most popular and imitated overdrive pedals of all time, and the Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer reissue is made in the same factory, with the same parts, to get the same tone. This pedal has three controls to help get the tone you need. Continue reading “Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer”