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Boost and Overdrive

The Ever-Compelling Mu-Tron Vintage Silver Range of Analog Effects is Now Available at Joe's Pedals

BoostBoost and OverdriveEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFuzzJoesPedals.comKlone and Transparent OverdriveModulationMu-TronOctave FuzzOctaverOverdrivePhaserPitchTubescreamer Style Overdrive+-
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I am already quite the fan of Mu-Tron and in fact acquired both their original compact revivals - the Micro-Tron III Envelope Filter, and Octavider Dual Analog Up/Down Octaver (as pictured immediately below) - back when they were first released around 2018/19. So I’m delighted to see that my good friend Joe Light of Joe’s Pedals fame now stocks this brand.


Since that original pair, Mu-Tron have been busy putting out further great compact editions - which now number 7 in total - the Boostron II Boost + Compressor, Micro-Tron IV Envelope Filter, Octavider Up/Down Octaver, Octavider+ Octave Fuzz, Phasor III Phaser, Ripper Envelope Filter (Micro-Tron Jr) and TubeTron OpAmp Overdrive.


Mu-Tron is particularly well known for its all-analog circuits - particularly those 70's Peak Time / Heyday Micro-Tron Filter and Bi-Phase Phaser pedals. Since the compact revivals first hit in 2018 (announced in 2017), there have been a number of different styles of graphics and colourways employed - before settling down on the current peak-time homage - Vintage Silver Editions - as seen at Joe'S Pedals and obviously per the above top visual.


Joe stocks all the compact editions bar the straight-up Octavider - which I though still believe is a compelling Octaver option, while the Octavider+ is certainly even more compelling!


I'm definitely looking to add a Phasor III and Octavider+ to my collection at some stage - and possibly the Boostron II too!


Here below follow the individual details in alphabetical order by pedal name :

Boostron II Boost + Compressor - £249


Controls - Ranger : H (Treble Boost) / M (Mid Range Boost) / L (Low End Boost) / Preamp : MU (High-Voltage OpAmp) / SB (JFET Stratoblaster) / RR (Red Ranger Transistor), Level, Squeeze (Compression), Boost.


A handy 3-Mode Boost with Compression, albeit its Ranger EQ Settings H-M-L only apply to the Red Ranger Transistor Mode, the other operational modes are MU High-Voltage OpAmp, and SB JFET Stratoblaster. You can also dial in a degree of Compression - via Level and Squeeze knobs. The Boost and Compressor are independently activated via the two footswitches. So a really cool Utility pedal really, albeit something of a mystery why EQ would only be applied to 1 of the 3 playback Modes. Still up for consideration though!

Micro-Tron IV Envelope Filter - £249


Controls - Mode : LP (Low Pass) / HP (High Pass) / BP (Band Pass), Range : Lo / Hi, Level, Peak, Gain.


The earlier Micto-Tron III version of this was for a long time my principal Envelope Filter Pedal / Auto-Wah - more recently displaced on the rotation most typically by the Flower Pedals Hosta Wah-Filter and Dr Scientist Dusk - although the Mictro-Tron does still put in regular appearances on the rotation. Still one of the very best out there - and sounds fantastic.

Octavider+ Up/Down Octave Fuzz - £249


Controls - Stablize (Pitch-Stabilization), Ringer (Upper Octave), Fuzz, Mix (Sub-Octave Degree), Tone.


This essentially takes the Octavider and adds a single knob Fuzz and Tone Control. Stabilize is essentially a pitch-correction function to smoothe out the tracking. While degree of Upper Octave is controlled by the Ringer Control, and the degree of Sub-Octave is controlled by the Mix control! I would really like to add one of these at some stage - as this is a really cool both-directions Octave Fuzz - which is a rather rare category!

Phasor III Phaser - £249


Controls - CV : Depth / Rate, Shape : Square / Sine, Depth, Rate, Feedback, Stage 4 / 6 on high hand footswitch.


In the Year of the Phaser - the Phasor III is another compelling proposition and one of the effects types that Mu-Tron is particularly well known for. You can select the CV / Expression function, Square or Sine Waveform, Depth only for 4-Stages, Depth and Rate for 6-Stages, and a separate Feedback Control. The number of Stages 4 / 6 is selected by the right-hand footswitch. I definitely need one of these - particularly as this is the Year of the Phaser - these sold out very quickly at Joe's - so I will need to wait for the re-stock!

Ripper Micro Filter - £169

Controls - Mode : LP (Low Pass) / BP (Band Pass), Range : Hi / Lo, Peak, Gain.


Alas no demo for this pedal yet - which is a pared down version of the Micro-Tron essentially - with just single footswitch, slightly fewer controls and fewer options. So Low Pass and Band Pass only and missing the Up/Down footswitch of the Micro-Tron - will make sense for many players who just need / want a stripped down version of the classic - obviously somewhat more keenly priced too!

TubeTron OpAmp Overdrive - £169


Controls - Treble, Middle, Level, Drive.


An elegantly textured 2-Band EQ'd OpAmp Overdrive with mid range hump accent - so somewhat adjacent to a Tube Screamer or a Klon - while somewhat distinct too. Different from most 2-Band EQ overdrives - this one targets Treble and Mids vs Highs and Lows. I feel this is a pretty compelling offering - while it's not like I really need yet another mid-humped overdrive - I'm still deciding on what priority to assign to this!

Final Thoughts

Very cool and distinctive pedals for sure - and some really impressive category leading types here. As mentioned - I have the very original versions of Micto-Tron III and Octavider, as pictured above, and would look to add a few more of these to my collection - with the Octavider+ and Phasor III likely at the top of that list.


It's handy to have Joe Light as your middle-man here - as he checks each of these pedals before they're sent out. Ensuring that you get a pedal in full and perfect working condition. At the time of writing, only the Phasor III has currently sold out, while the Octavider+ is likely to sell out very soon too - still plenty of options remaining, and no doubt Joe will be ordering another batch as soon as this one is mostly gone.


Apparently there is a Flanger variety forthcoming very soon and no doubt a couple more editions in development. As noted - these come in a variety of graphic and colourway styles - with the Vintage Silver Editions pictured the current mainstays. Some of these are also available in all-black limited editions, while the earliest editions were bright single colour types - like my original two pictured above.


These all-analog circuits are really clean and elegant - with relatively few but impactful controls. Very easy to dial in and deploy for sure - and have that lovely analog warmth and texture that so many love.


I would assume that the Micro-Tron IV, Octavider+ and the Phasor III are the standout varieties here! And all are worthy of acquisition - while if you have the Micro-Tron, you don't really need the Ripper!


As well as being stocked by Joe Light's Joe's Pedals, you should note that if you're based on the continent, then good friend Sebastian Nylund's These Go To 11 also stocks Mu-Tron.


Are you a fan of Mu-Tron - and do you employ any of these on your pedalboard?

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Stefan Karlsson
Stefan Karlsson
Guitar Pedal X
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