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Best of French Guitar Pedals and Pedal Builders

770-CircuitsAnasoundsBoostBoost and OverdriveBuffalo FXCoda EffectsEffects Pedal MakersEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGlou GlouJacques StompboxesKlone and Transparent OverdriveModulated FuzzModulationModulation WorkstationOctave FuzzOddball FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdrivePhaserRat Style FuzzSilicon FuzzSuper-Fuzz StyleThrilltoneTremoloTube OverdriveTubescreamer Style OverdriveTwo Notes Audio EngineeringUtilityZorg Effects+-
2018GPXFrenchPedalMakers700V2-min.jpg

I’m really enjoying researching French Pedal-Makers and discovering so many new brands, while figuring out also that a lot of French Pedal Brand lists are horribly out-of-date as many of those companies previously listed have ceased trading over the last 10 years or so. This follows on from the Best of British and Best of Canadian Pedal Builders and as I am really enjoying doing this sort of thing I will probably stretch the series out to 10 or so articles - as long as I can find enough ...

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Best of Canadian Guitar Pedals and Pedal Builders

6 Degrees FXAleks K ProductionAnalog DelayBig Muff Style FuzzBoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionChorus and VibratoDelayDelay WorkstationDiamond PedalsDigital DelayDistortionDr ScientistDriveDual-DriveEffects Pedal MakersEmpress EffectsFairfield CircuitryFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzGlitchGranular DelayGround Control AudioIndustrialectricKingsley AmplifiersKlone and Transparent OverdriveLo-Fi DelayMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionModulated FuzzModulationMontreal AssemblyMulti-DriveOctave FuzzOddball DelayOddball FuzzOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdrivePhaserRadial EngineeringRat Style FuzzRetro-SonicREVV AmplificationSilicon FuzzSolidGoldFXSonic CrayonSouthampton PedalsSuper-Fuzz StyleTone Bender Style FuzzTone Hungry EffectsToneboneTube OverdriveTubescreamer Style OverdriveVox Style DistortionWounded Paw Audio+-
2018GPXCanadianPedals700V6-min.jpg

This follows on from my earlier article on British Pedal Builders - I had no immediate plans to do a series of these, but there are definitely certain nations that excel in pedal-making which I quite enjoy featuring. I need not really include the most prodigious - the USA as most pedals still come from there, but will focus on some of the smaller nations and do fairly compact roundups of each. As I said I had no plans originally beyond British, but will likely do French, German, Italian, ...

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Victory Amps lay down a marker with their new 4-tube-driven PreAmp Pedals

AmpsBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionDistortionDriveDual-DriveEffects Pedal MakersMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionMulti-DriveOverdriveTube AmpTube OverdriveVictory Amps+-
2018GPXVictoryV4PreAmpPedals700-min-min.jpg

I must admit that even though my stereo rig is half valve, half solid-state - I have tended to shy away from tube-driven devices a touch because of the additional burden of fragility and ongoing maintenance and servicing. I have considered tube PreAmp pedals by both Kingsley Amplifiers and Effectrode Thermionic at various times before - but have always worried about the servicing and maintenance aspects (and size!) - particularly of the latter ones which have their tubes poking out from the top...

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6 of the Best Butler Tube Driver Style Pedals

BK ButlerBoost and OverdriveBuffalo FXFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionFuzzrociousHermidaLovepedalMXROverdriveTC ElectronicTube Overdrive+-
2018AfBlg6TubeDrivers700-min

The 1983-designed B.K. Butler Tube Driver famously used by David Gilmour, Eric Johnson, Billy Gibbons and Joe Satriani to name a few. The core of the pedal is a hand-selected 12AX7 tube - which gives you a lovely sort of fuzz-drive sound than can sound amazingly smooth and textured in the hands of masters like David Gilmour - who still features 2 of these within his rig.

 

These were off the market for a while, then manufactured under licence as Chandler Tube Drivers - but they are now ...

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The Kind of Pedal we would love to see Strymon do next

12 Degrees of SaturationBig Muff Style FuzzBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionDistortionDriveDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzKlone and Transparent OverdriveMaestro Style FuzzMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionModulated FuzzMulti-DriveOCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOddball FuzzOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdriveRat Style FuzzSilicon FuzzStrymonSuper-Fuzz StyleTone Bender Style FuzzTube OverdriveTubescreamer Style OverdriveVox Style Distortion+-
2017AfBlgRodeoDrive700V4

So I’ve had the Strymon Riverside since early December last year, and although it is a fine 4-gain-stage distortion pedal which I love and use daily, it’s not without its flaws. I’ve relatively recently also acquired the Elektron Analog Drive, which targets some of the weaknesses of the Riverside, but still does not satisfactorily offer the complete overdrive and distortion solution which I am actively seeking.

 

In truth, what I’m really looking for is an all-in-...

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12 Degrees of Saturation - Key Guitar Overdrive, Fuzz and Distortion Sounds

12 Degrees of SaturationBig Muff Style FuzzBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionDiezelDistortionDriveDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveElektronFriedman EffectsFulltone EffectsFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzIbanezKlone and Transparent OverdriveMad Professor EffectsMaestro Style FuzzMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionModulated FuzzMooerMulti-DriveOCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOddball FuzzOneControlOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdriveRat Style FuzzSilicon FuzzStrymonSuper-Fuzz StyleTone Bender Style FuzzToneQuestTube OverdriveVox Style DistortionWamplerXotic Effects+-
2017AfBlgDegreesOfSaturation700V6

Note - New and Revised Article - [Here]

 

So another chapter of the Tone Quest is nearing its momentary end-point. In the ongoing efforts to arrive at the perfect Tone, I’ve been spending an inordinate amount of time experimenting with and researching overdrives, fuzzes and distortions. Being somewhat eclectic in my tastes, there are a number of the deemed key / core sounds I like. Some players sit squarely within ’Blues’, ’Rock’ or ’Metal’ or ...

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Assembling The Perfect Pedal Board

BoostBossCompressorCryBabyDelayDunlop EffectsElectro-HarmonixFuzzKingsley EffectsLoop-SwitcherModulationOverdrivePedal ManiaPedalboard and Pedal-ChainReverbStryfectaStrymonTheGigRigTheGigRig G2ToneQuestTube OverdriveVolumeWah and Fixed WahWampler+-
2016AfBlgPerfectPedalboard700


It’s somewhat ironic that I did my damndest to avoid going down the pedal route, but here I find myself enamoured with pedals, and particularly those which Strymon produces. The Mobius, TimeLine and BigSky have become a mainstay of many a professional’s pedal board, and the sheer virtuosity in versatility is staggering. You just need to have a look at the quality of the Strymon website and its product pages in particular to realise that they are currently wholly without peer in this...

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