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Top Five Overdrive Pedals

December 19, 2014 by · 7 Comments 

Top Five Overdrive Guitar Pedals

When considering which overdrive pedals belong on the Mount Rushmore of guitar gear, we here at Gear-Vault took one major consideration into account, which is tone. Let’s face it – overdrive is overdrive, and has been since studio musician Grady Martin continued playing despite a faulty pre-amp circuit in the console of a Nashville recording studio in 1961. The nuances of distortion, and opinions about its place in music, have been fine-tuned ever since. This list leans toward pedals that the average musician can afford – the exotic special effects pedals that so few serious artists ever really use anyway are excluded. This list is intended to let you know which pedals might be best for your sound, with the number of pedals sold not having too much influence on their ranking. One caveat for all: None of the following pedals come with earplugs, the use of which is strongly encouraged for the proper use of these smoking guns. In reverse order: Read more

Mesa Boogie Tone-Burst, Grid Slammer, Flux-Drive, and Throttle Box Tone Samples

January 2, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Mesa Boogie Pedals 2013

Mesa Boogie recently announced four new bad ass overdrive pedals – these pedals are: Tone-Burst, Grid Slammer, Flux-Drive, and Throttle Box. Below are the details along with some sweet ass tone samples from Mesa/Boogie:

MESA Pedals are built by the very same artisans that create the Award Winning Mark Five, the legendary Dual Rectifier and the new TransAtlantic TA-30. These pedals feature the same quality components, craftsmanship and inspiring performance as all of our custom amplifiers.

They’re all hand-built in our one and only shop in Petaluma California…. the Home of Tone! And every MESA pedal is backed by our legendary Customer Service and our long-standing commitment to musicians worldwide since 1969!

Tone-Burst

The TONE-BURST Boost/Overdrive offers a virtually transparent gain range usually associated with “clean” boost pedals. However, the TONE-BURST has enough gain to boost your guitar to the threshold of clip and slightly beyond, making it far more useful for a variety of applications. It’s incredibly powerful for adding boost, drive and/or EQ to any guitar and amp combination. Whether using it as a utility to boost the output of single coils to match a humbucker or as a subtle overdrive when a standard overdrive may be too much, the TONE-BURST is an incredibly useful and expressive pedal that makes the best things sound even better!

Mesa Boogie Tone Burst Boost/Overdrive Audio Samples

Features:

  • Designed and Hand-Built in Petaluma, California, USA
  • True Bypass On/Off Switching – Bypasses all circuitry when off to ensure no tonal loss
  • Gain Control allows you to dial in the perfect amount of boost or mild overdrive
  • Master Level Control provides a variable range of signal boost up to +20db
  • Bass & Treble Controls provide +/- 12db of EQ boost or cut for exceptional tone shaping
  • On/Off Status LED
  • 9V Battery Powered or optional AC Powered via External Power Jack Input
  • Input & Output Jacks (Nominal Input -20 db)

Grid Slammer

The GRID SLAMMER Overdrive is an overdrive pedal that produces a variable boost in gain over a wide range with a classic, guitar-centric midrange bump that enhances many different playing styles. It’s a true overdrive “specialist” that covers an amazing array of what many top players consider the most expressive and musical ranges of overdrive. From sweet, subtle breakup to a harmonically smoldering overdrive that can both sting and sing, the GRID SLAMMER sets a new bar in legendary overdrive!

Mesa Boogie Grid Slammer Overdrive Tone Samples

Features:

  • Designed and Hand-Built in Petaluma, California, USA
  • True Bypass On/Off Switching – Bypasses all circuitry when off to ensure no tonal loss
  • Gain Control allows you to dial in the perfect amount of vintage breakup or classic overdrive
  • Master Level Control provides a variable range of signal boost up to +20db
  • Tone Control balances the amount of high frequencies
  • On/Off Status LED
  • 9V Battery Powered or optional AC Powered via External Power Jack Input
  • Input & Output Jacks (Nominal Input -20 db)

Flux-Drive

The FLUX-DRIVE Overdrive+ is an overdrive for those who want more of all the best things from an overdrive! It has more liquid gain and enhanced sustain that easily feeds into rich harmonic overtones making it incredibly addictive and inspiring to play, especially to enhance a crunch or higher gain amp channel! It also offers a more complete tone-shaping network with individual Treble and Bass controls. This architecture makes the FLUX-DRIVE a more complete preamp with added versatility beyond that of most overdrive pedals.

Mesa Boogie Flux-Drive Overdrive Tone Samples

Features:

  • Designed and Hand-Built in Petaluma, California, USA
  • True Bypass On/Off Switching – Bypasses all circuitry when off to ensure no tonal loss
  • Gain Control allows you to dial in the perfect amount of vocal-overdrive, dynamic to sustaining
  • Master Level Control provides a variable range of signal boost up to +20db
  • Bass & Treble Controls provide +/- 12db of EQ boost or cut for exceptional tone shaping
  • On/Off Status LED
  • 9V Battery Powered or optional AC Powered via External Power Jack Input
  • Input & Output Jacks (Nominal Input -20 db)

Throttle Box

The THROTTLE BOX Distortion serves up all genres of ROCK with cut and aggression, but retains the signature warmth and organic sonic quality found in all our instruments. While its main strengths lie in higher-gain sounds, it’s also versatile and the lower gain options shouldn’t be overlooked for classic rock or howling blues. It also features a unique Mid Cut that scoops out midrange to produce the signature Boogie “V” EQ-curve that so many artists have employed in our amps to create the world’s heaviest guitar tones!

Mesa Boogie Throttle Box Distortion Tone Samples

Features

  • Designed and Hand-Built in Petaluma, California, USA
  • True Bypass On/Off Switching – Bypasses all circuitry when off to ensure no tonal loss
  • Gain Control allows you to dial in the perfect amount of classic to modern high-gain
  • Lo/High Gain Switch provides classic crunch to modern meltdown
  • Master Level Control provides a variable range of signal boost up to +20db
  • Tone Control balances the amount of high frequencies
  • Mid-Cut Control provides powerful mid-scoop for modern high-gain styles
  • Internal EQ-Boost Switch provides added style/voicing option
  • On/Off Status LED
  • 9V Battery Powered or optional AC Powered via External Power Jack Input
  • Input & Output Jacks (Nominal Input -20 db)

For more information:
Mesa/Boogie

Build Your Own Distortion Pedal Kit by ModKits Review

June 17, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Thunderdrive Pedal modkitsdiyEver wanted to build a piece of equipment yourself? Instead of buying that $300 pedal, you could spend a little bit of time and some elbow grease and build it yourself. Well, with the Thunderdrive Pedal from modkitsdiy.com, you can get your foot in the door, and learn a few things about electronics along the way.

Upon receiving the pedal from Modkits, I opened up the box and checked it out. Inside the metal box that will soon become your self-built distortion pedal lies a bag full of all the resistors, pots, wires and input/output jacks needed to build the pedal. I was a bit overwhelmed at first, viewing the instructions and realizing I was going to need to solder. Soldering is the process of melting metal, or solder, and using it to connect a lead to a point to make a solid connection. It’s something I had watched someone do once, but had never actually done it. Read more

MAXIMUM OVERDRIVE: Badass ’78 & Green Rhino

May 20, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Way Huge Green Rhino MXR Custom Badass ’78 DistortionGuitar players love distortion. No big secret, really. From the time we start playing we are pretty much issued a distortion pedal of some kind right out of the gate and we proceed from there. By the time I was 13, I had my brown Ross distortion plugged into my solid state Gretsch amp and pretty much blistered my Mom’s paint for a few hours every day. These days, distortion and overdrive pedals have become much more of Read more

NAMM 2011: Way Huge Green Rhino Overdrive MkII

January 12, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

way-huge-green-rhino-overdrive-pedalNAMM 2011 — The legendary Way Huge Green Rhino has returned! The Mk II has all the gorgeous classic overdrive that you crave but it has evolved to include cool new features that make it even more rhinoceriffic.

In addition to the Volume, Tone, and Drive controls, you get a 100Hz EQ knob to cut or boost your low end by 12dB. Your low notes can either shake the ground like a stampede across the savannah or cut through the mix like a charging rhino’s horn. This pachyderm of a pedal also sports a Curve control to fine-tune the corner frequencies of your tone. Read more

Boss ST2 Power Stack Guitar Pedal

September 3, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

Boss ST2 Power StackBOSS U.S. is proud to announce the addition of the ST-2 Power Stack to its industry-leading compact pedal lineup. Boss ST2 emulates the sound and feel of a cranked stack tube amp. The Boss ST-2 is a unique type of BOSS distortion pedal, one that gives guitarists both the sound and feel of playing through a large, cranked-up, stack-style tube amplifier. This is accomplished through BOSS’ years of meticulous research in amp modeling, and represents a bold step forward in stompbox design. Read more

Rothwell Tornado Class A Overdrive Guitar Pedal

September 3, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

rothwell-tornado-guitar-overdrive-pedal

Rothwell Audio Products has released their latest pedal, the Tornado. The Tornado is a class A, single-ended overdrive that uses JFETs throughout to effectively act as a pre-amp in the classic guitar amp format, but running from 9 volts rather than 200-300 volts as a standard amp does. The result is an overdriven sound that is much closer to that of an amp but with pedal convenience.

The pedal features Volume, Gain, and Tone controls, and adds a Shift button that alters the response of the tone control, shifting the midrange content and altering the turnover frequency for vintage and modern tone flexibility. Read more

Handwired-Effects VOD-1 Vintage Overdrive

February 17, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Handwired-Effects VOD-1 Vintage Overdrive

Handwired-Effects has announced the VOD-1 Vintage OverDrive. This strictly limited, up-to-date version of a classic overdrive was designed with a new generation of discerning players in mind who covetes the warm and singing tube-tone of the original “Holy Grail,” yet desires an added modern-day kick. Read more

Rocktron Third Angel Distortion Guitar Pedal

January 4, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Rocktron Third Angel Distortion Guitar PedalHere is a video demonstration of the Rocktron Third Angel Guitar Pedal. It sounds quite rock ‘n roll with a heavy metal edge. The pedal has great bass reflex and mids that cut through the mix really well. read the presser and watch the video below. Read more

Hughes & Kettner Tube Factor Pedal

March 10, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

Hughes & Kettner Tube Factor Pedal

The Hughes & Kettner Tube Factor is a high-voltage booster/overdrive pedal. By feeding ample juice (upwards of 300-volts) to its tube-based preamp tone circuitry; this unit supplies you with the real deal: a warm tube clean sound and a blazing, saturated-tube lead sound. Both are selected from the press of a switch. The Tube Factor is the key ingredient to producing the most desired lead sounds from vintage amps and genuine tube tone from solid state combos. In effect, it expands any amplifier with an additional channel.

Due to the pedals high-voltage capability, a broader range of responsiveness occurs between the guitar and the amplifier. *Read More

Average price: $300 – $350

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