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2021 May Pedal-Chain Update - Episode V - Future Phase

Beetronics FXBig Ear PedalsBig Muff Style FuzzBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBossChorus and VibratoCrazy Tube CircuitsD*A*MDemedash EffectsDistortionDrive WorkstationDrunk BeaverEmanating Fist ElectronicsEQFoxpedalFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzHarmonizerJoe GoreKlirrton ManufakturKuro Custom AudioMantic EffectsMarshall Style DistortionModulationMulti-DriveOctave FuzzOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdrivePettyjohn ElectronicsPhaserPitchRat Style FuzzSilicon FuzzThird Man RecordsThorpyFXTone Bender Style FuzzTubescreamer Style OverdriveUtility+-
2021GPXSKPedalChainUpdateMayRevised700V4.jpg

May turned out to be another pretty busy month as far as new releases and the overall collection is concerned. I personally acquired around 20 or so new pedals - with some further acquisitions not having landed yet.

 

Obviously a fair amount of new Overdrives and Phasers in particular - while May covered most of the key pedal categories in one way or another. And most of the pedal-chain additions for the month have been reviewed or touched on in some way previously - with the exception ...

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The 3 Pedal Challenge - Ultimate Range, Versatility and Variety at the key enclosure sizes

Big Ear PedalsBoost and OverdriveBossChase Bliss AudioDelayDistortionDriveEchoverbGFI SystemHorizon DevicesKeeley EngineeringModulationModulation WorkstationMooerMulti-DrivePigtronixReverbSource Audio+-
2021GPX3PedalChallenge700V3.jpg

The 3 Pedal Challenge was in constant circulation last year on a variety of discussion groups, and I’ve kind of been biding my time in the hope I would have more options to choose from by now, but there has been no significant addition this year to unseat any of my established selections.

 

There are various ways to go about the 3 Pedal Challenge - where some individuals simply just select their 3 favourite pedals - without any particular rhyme or reason. While for me it’s a ...

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2021GPXBigEarLoafWoodcutter700.jpg

I’m delighted to have got my hands on one of these limited edition Loaf Fuzzes. Funnily the one I’ve been after for the longest time has eluded me so far. The first Big Ear Pedal that was on my wishlist and that I still want is a Squatch Wood Facia edition of the Woodcutter Distortion. For me there’s nothing more fitting than to have a Woodcutter in a wood-facia enclosure.

 

I am actually quite the fan of wood-facia pedals in general, and have 4 of the Bogner Rupert ...

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2021 February Pedal-Chain Update - Episode II - A Typical Transitional Lull

Big Ear PedalsBoostBoost and OverdriveChorus and VibratoCryBabyCustom Audio ArtDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDunlop EffectsElectro-HarmonixFlangerFuzzGated and Velcro FuzzKlirrton ManufakturMetal DistortionModulationOverdrivePettyjohn ElectronicsPhaserPitchSilicon FuzzWah and Fixed Wah+-
2021GPXSKPedalChainUpdateFeb700V3.jpg

I would like to start by apologising to those builders who didn’t get a pedal featured in Wednesday’s final 32 Key Guitar Effects Pedal Types article. Know that I hold you all in the highest of esteem - and that said overview is/was simply a somewhat temporary and fleeting snapshot of my current preferences on that day - with a particular emphasis towards versatility and variety delivered by a single pedal. So some pedals are typically more narrowly focused and specialist, while ...

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JHS 20 Year Pedal Challenge

Becos FXBig Ear PedalsBig Muff Style FuzzBitcrushing and Lo-FiBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveChase Bliss AudioCompressorCooper FXDelayDelay WorkstationDr ScientistDrive WorkstationEmpress EffectsEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGFI SystemGlitchJackson AudioKlone and Transparent OverdriveModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-FXOCD Style OverdriveOddball ModulationOpAmp FuzzOverdriveRat Style FuzzTimmyTubescreamer Style OverdriveTweed Style OverdriveUtility+-
2021GPXJHS20YearPedalChallenge700.jpg

This is obviously a follow-up from the Josh Scott / JHS January 1st YouTube video as below. Where Josh carried out and exercise where he compiled the best pedals released over the last two decades - in 6 specific categories - Best Overdrive / Distortion, Best Fuzz, Best Time-Based Effect, Best Modulation, Best Compressor, and Best Weird / Other - all must have been release January 1st 2000 or later.

 

Along with his own take, he solicited opinions from Jamie Stillman of EQD, Matthew ...

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2020 Best of the Best New Guitar Pedals of the Year

Ambient EffectsBig Ear PedalsBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBossBrown Sound DistortionChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCooper FXCoppersoundDelayDemedash EffectsDigital ReverbDistortionDr ScientistDual-DriveEarthQuaker DevicesElectro-HarmonixEnvelope Filter and Auto WahExpresso FXFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzGermanium FuzzGlitchGranular DelayGuitar Synth and SequencerHologram ElectronicsHot Cake Style OverdriveJackson AudioJAM PedalsKlone and Transparent OverdriveMarshall Style DistortionMenatoneMetal DistortionModulated FuzzModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveNeural DSPNordland ElectronicsOCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOctaverOddball FuzzOddball ModulationODR Style OverdriveOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdrivePhaserPitchPlate ReverbRack Style ReverbRat Style FuzzRed Witch EffectsRedbeard EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationShimmer ReverbShnobel ToneSilicon FuzzSpaceman EffectsSpacey ReverbSpring ReverbStrymonTimmyTone Bender Style FuzzTremoloTubescreamer Style OverdriveTweed Style OverdriveUtilityVox Style DistortionVS Audio+-
2020GPXBestOveralOfTheYear700.jpg

So I’ve now completed 5 preliminary shortlists type articles featuring between 9 and 30 or so of the best pedals released in 2020 - in each of the following categories :

I sincerely apologise if I’ve overlooked any here, while I’m not sure they would have necessarily ...

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2020 Best of New Modulation, Pitch and Utility Pedals for the Year

Alexander PedalsAnasoundsBeat MachineBecos FXBig Ear PedalsBitcrushing and Lo-FiBossChorus and VibratoCompressorCooper FXCoppersoundDedalo FXDr ScientistDunlop EffectsElectro-HarmonixEmpress EffectsEnvelope Filter and Auto WahEQFlangerFlower PedalsGlitchGuitar Synth and SequencerHamstead SoundworksHarmonizerHologram ElectronicsJAM PedalsLooperModulationModulation WorkstationMXROctaverOddball ModulationOld Blood Noise EndeavorsPhaserPitchPitch-ShiftingRock Fabrik EffectsRotary SpeakerSlicer and StutterSpaceman EffectsTC ElectronicTremoloUni-Vibe and VibeUtilityVS AudioWah and Fixed WahWalrus Audio+-
2020GPXBestOfYearModulationEtc200.jpg

This is the fourth of the preliminary roundups - before I reveal the 25 or so ’Best of the Best of 2020’ - it covers most other pedal genres not yet feature - including in particularly modulation and utility types. Note though that there will be a couple more surprises in the final reckoning!

 

Unlike the Delay and Reverb category I actually own a few of these, while other outstanding ones are very high on the priority list for next year.

 

I own 7 of these all-told - ...

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End of November Pedal-Chain Update - Episode X - Penultimate Positioning

Big Ear PedalsBig Muff Style FuzzBossBrown Sound DistortionChase Bliss AudioCooper FXCoppersoundDemedash EffectsDistortionFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGermanium FuzzKMA AudioMetal DistortionMidValleyFXPushking PedalsSilicon FuzzSitek Guitar ElectronicsStrymonToneczarVick AudioZvex+-
2020GPXSKSignalChainPostNAMMNovember700V4.jpg

So we’re in the final throws of 2020, and most of what’s going to be in place for the year is near enough there already - I typically wind down in November to shift budgets for December towards Christmas expenses. There will be at least one change in December - as I will reveal later on in forthcoming arrivals below - and there may be a couple or so further adjustments depending on how well I’m feeling things!

 

For 2020, of the 40/41 numbered slots - 21 have actually ...

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12 Degrees of Saturation : 2020 Key Distortion Categories Edition

12 Degrees of SaturationAmptweakerAMT EffectsAnarchy AudioBearfoot FXBig Ear PedalsBig Tone Music BreweryBlackhawk AmplificationBossBrown Sound DistortionBYOCCarcharias EffectsCatalinbreadCoda EffectsDanelectroDecibelicsDigiTechDistortionDOD EffectsDr ScientistDriveDrunk BeaverDual-DriveDunwich AmplificationEarthbound AudioEarthQuaker DevicesFeaturedFree Fall DiverFriedman EffectsFunction F(X)Fuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionJackson AudioJAM PedalsJohn K Vintage GuitarsKeeley EngineeringLawrence Petross DesignLoop Hole PedalsMarshall Style DistortionMenatoneMetal DistortionMI EffectsMidValleyFXMooerMulti-DriveMXROneControlOpAmp FuzzPelican NoiseworksPepers' PedalsRat Style FuzzRedbeard EffectsReuss EffectsREVV AmplificationSinvertekSuhrThorpyFXVFE PedalsVox Style DistortionWamplerXIX Tech FXXotic Effects+-
2020GPX12DgreesSaturationDistortionEdition700V2.jpg

This edition comes rather hot on the heels of the recent 12 Degrees of Overdrive version as many readers’ inquiries questioned a couple of missing categories there - which I explained would rather figure within the Distortion contingent which is present here in all its glory!

 

As always, these is some considerable amount of grey science at play here - best typified by the Big Muff and Rat circuits - which are both very much distortions as well as fuzz varieties. I have 3 x 12 ...

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End of September Pedal-Chain Update - Episode VIII - Starry Eyed Surprise

Ambient EffectsBig Ear PedalsBig Muff Style FuzzBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBossBrown Sound DistortionChorus and VibratoCoppersoundDigital ReverbDistortionDr ScientistDriveDual-DriveElectro-HarmonixEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFjord FuzzFulltone EffectsFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzHarmonizerJackson AudioJoesPedals.comKlone and Transparent OverdriveKMA AudioMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionModulated FuzzModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveNFYFXOCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOctaverOpAmp FuzzOverdrivePitchPitch-ShiftingPlate ReverbRack Style ReverbRed Witch EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationShimmer ReverbShnobel ToneSilicon FuzzSpacey ReverbStrymonSuper-Fuzz StyleToneczarTubescreamer Style OverdriveVick AudioWah and Fixed WahWalrus AudioZander Circuitry+-
2020GPXSKSignalChainPostNAMMSeptember700V4.jpg

And so as my 7th month of isolation draws to a close - the frequency of new product releases has begun to accelerate again after the lull of summer. The month started on fine form with the slightly surprising snap arrival of he new Jackson Audio El Guapo, next we had the Walrus Audio Julia that always should have been - in the guise of the new and improved Julianna Chorus, then the Zander Circuitry Compact Siclone, Boss OC-5 Octave, somewhat delayed Big Ear Albie, the EHX Pitch Fork+, Red Witch...

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