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4 Key Guitar Pedal Trends for 2019 - Smarter Pedals, More Voicings, Multi-Colour LEDs, and More Utility

Acoustic SimulatorBoostBoost and OverdriveCompressorDelayDigital DelayEQGranular DelayJackson AudioJHS PedalsKeyztoneModulationOverdriveRed Panda EffectsTubescreamer Style OverdriveUtility+-
2019GPX3KeyPedalTrends700-min.jpg

Carrying on from last year - where I somewhat correctly predicted pedals would continue to get more compact, larger numbers would adapt dual-footswitch functionality and pedalboards and pedal-chains would get increasingly larger - I have now identified 4 more prevailing trends for this year.

 

I have selected 4 pedals which underscore these trends - three of my favourites from last year, and the forthcoming significantly enhanced and improved Red Panda Particle V2. These pedals ...

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Best of Italian Guitar Pedals and Pedal Builders

AC NoisesAcoustic SimulatorBig Muff Style FuzzBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveCornerstone Music GearDelayDigital DelayEffects Pedal MakersFoxgearF-PedalsFTelettronicaFuzzGurus AmpsKlone and Transparent OverdriveMastro ValvolaModulated FuzzModulationNexihum Sound CultOddball FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdrivePhaserSilicon FuzzSIM1Tape DelayTremolo+-
2018GPXItalianPedalMakers700-min.jpg

With its still world-leading designer manufacturing industries I expect Italian pedal-makers to exhibit a certain degree of flair and pizzazz. So I was a touch disappointed when I came across so many poorly designed websites and often rather mediocre designs of pedals. That’s not to say there aren’t some leading lights here which raise the tone - but overall with the glut of pedal-makers I reviewed, I felt that as a nation they did not quite live up to their billing or imaginary ...

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35 of the Best Boss Compact Guitar Pedals - 2018 Update

Acoustic SimulatorAlchemy AudioAmbient EffectsAnalog DelayBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBossBrown Sound DistortionChorus and VibratoCompressorDelayDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDriveDual-DriveEffects Pedal MakersEnvelope Filter and Auto WahEQFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionHarmonizerKeeley EngineeringLooperMaestro Style FuzzMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionModified PedalsModulationMulti-DriveNoise GateOctave FuzzOctaverOverdrivePitchPitch-ShiftingReverbSilicon FuzzSpring ReverbSuper-Fuzz StyleTalk Box and VocoderTremoloTunersUtilityWaza Craft+-
2018AfBlg35BossCompacts700V3-min

So last year was the 40th anniversary of the Boss Compact Pedal (1977 - 2017) and I did a feature to commemorate that notable milestone. On that occasion I picked out 20 of my favourite Boss Compacts - past and present.

 

In the intervening time I’ve got more and more into Boss pedals - particularly modified versions, and have decided to extend the list to cover the additional pedals I am interested in. There is still a part of me that prefers the MXR-style enclosure, especially ...

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20 Key Guitar Effects Pedal Types - Preferred Large Pedal per Type

Acoustic SimulatorAmptweakerBig Muff Style FuzzBoostBoost and OverdriveBossCarl MartinChorus and VibratoCompressorDelayDelay WorkstationDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDouble TrackingDriveEarthQuaker DevicesElectro-HarmonixElektronEmpress EffectsEQFlangerFree The ToneFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionLooperMarshall Style DistortionModulationMulti-DriveNoise GateOctaverOpAmp FuzzOverdrivePhaserPigtronixPitchRat Style FuzzReverbReverb WorkstationSonuusSubdecay EffectsTech 21 NYCTremoloTubescreamer Style OverdriveTunersUtilityVolumeWah and Fixed WahWhirlwind EffectsXotic EffectsZvex+-
2017AfBlg20LargePedalType700

This article completes the fourth part of the quadrilogy which started with the compact pedal overview and was triggered by the 40th anniversary Boss article. If you’re going to go with a large enclosure pedal, you really need it to be of the all-singing and dancing variety, otherwise why would you be sacrificing so much pedal real estate. Traditionally large pedals have meant the big all-in-one workstations - i.e. your classic big box Eventide and Strymon, and now Boss solutions. ...

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20 Key Guitar Effects Pedal Types - Preferred Medium Pedal per Type

Acoustic SimulatorBig Muff Style FuzzBoostBoost and OverdriveBossCarl MartinChorus and VibratoCompressorDelayDelay WorkstationDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDouble TrackingDual-DriveEmpress EffectsEQFlangerFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionLooperMarshall Style DistortionModulationMorley PedalsMulti-DriveNoise GateOctaverOverdrivePhaserPitchReverbReverb WorkstationSource AudioStone Deaf EffectsStrymonTC ElectronicTremoloTunersTWA EffectsUtilityVolumeWah and Fixed Wah+-
2017AfBlg20MediumtPedalType700

We’ve covered off Key Effects Pedals per Compact and Mini size, and here we go up a category to Medium. When I think of medium-sized pedals, the makers that immediately spring to mind are Strymon, Empress , Carl Martin and Way Huge (Dunlop) - for whom the medium-size enclosure forms the mainstay of their product offerings. All the newer Orange Amps pedals have been of medium size and same goes for Stone Deaf FX, and I guess in the early 70’s - before Boss came along with its ’...

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20 Key Guitar Effects Pedal Types - Preferred Mini Pedal per Type

Acoustic SimulatorBig Muff Style FuzzBoostBoost and OverdriveChorus and VibratoCompressorDelayDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDouble TrackingDriveEQEWS EffectsFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionKlone and Transparent OverdriveLooperModulationMooerMulti-DriveMXRNoise GateOctaverOverdrivePhaserPigtronixPitchReverbTC ElectronicTremoloTunersUtilityVolumeWah and Fixed WahWamplerXotic Effects+-
2017AfBlg20MiniPedalType700

It’s no secret that I’m a fan of mini pedals and feature right now 6 of that type in my active studio pedal chain (of 35). All of these are exceptional at what they provide, and they all sound great, and are amongst my favourites. Somewhat ironically, of those 6 - one has already been marked for replacement. My much-loved Mooer Blues Mood which is a clone of the celebrated Keeley-modded Boss Blues Driver BD-2 - has somewhat added competition in the guise of the new Boss Angry Driver...

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20 Key Guitar Effects Pedal Types - Preferred Compact Pedal per Type

Acoustic SimulatorBig Muff Style FuzzBoostBoost and OverdriveBossChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCompressorCryBabyDelayDelay WorkstationDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDouble TrackingDr ScientistDriveDunlop EffectsEQFlangerFoxpedalFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionJackson AudioLooperModulationMulti-DriveNoise GateOctaverOrigin EffectsOverdrivePedalboard and Pedal-ChainPhaserPitchReverbReverb WorkstationTC ElectronicToneQuestTremoloTubescreamer Style OverdriveTunersUtilityVolumeWah and Fixed Wah+-
2017AfBlg20CompactPedalType700V2

Following my piece on 20 of the Best Boss Compact Pedals, I decided to do an overview of 20 of the key different pedal types by approximate pedalboard sort order - to see which brands in my opinion fared the best across all 20 categories - in terms of preferred compact pedal per type. This is of course all hugely subjective, but there are several practicality concerns here too, and some pedals perhaps that would be selected almost regardless of any size restrictions. In every slot you have ...

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