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GPX Blog

Pedal Design 101 - Pedal Primary Colour Wheel and which Pedals 'Own' a particular Colour

Analog DelayBlues Driver Style OverdriveBondi EffectsBoost and OverdriveBossCompressorDelayDiamond PedalsDistortionDriveFlangerGuitar Gear Improvements and PrototypesIbanezLovepedalMarshall Style DistortionModulationMXROverdrivePhaserTremoloT-Rex EffectsTubescreamer Style OverdriveUtility+-
2019GPXPedalColourWheel700V2.jpg

Update! This feature inspired 5 further articles - Red, Orange, Yellow, Green and Blue!

 

This feature was inspired by a couple of different events - firstly ongoing conversations I have been having with Fjord Fuzz’s Daniel Thornhill about the colour of LEDs for different pedal types, and secondly an odd Q&A episode of That Pedal Show where Dan was trying to match a pedal to the colour of his yellow trousers or pants as some of you like to call them.

 

I turned my mind ...

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16 of the Best Compact Tweed Style Drive Pedals

Bearfoot FXBoostBoost and OverdriveBossCatalinbreadCrazy Tube CircuitsDistortionDriveGreer AmpsJ RockettJRADLovepedalMad Professor EffectsMenatoneOverdriveTrue North PedalsTwangtone by BSMUmbrella CompanyWamplerZvex+-
2019GPX16BestTweedDrives700-min.jpg

I should probably have covered this off sooner but I’m so satisfied with my True North Tweed Drive that I’ve not felt it necessary to look at alternatives. That said, there have been a few fairly recent additions to this group - so I thought I might as well do an overview of what’s around - usual suspects, new and old.

 

I’ve been aware of Tweed style overdrives for a while, in fact I had the Bearfoot FX Sparkling Yellow OD3 for more than a year before trying it ...

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Pedal Design 101 - All about Pedal Knobs, and why more brands should have their own signature versions

Blackout EffectorsBogner AmplificationBossBuild Your Own CloneBYOCChase Bliss AudioCusack MusicDanelectroElectro-HarmonixFairfield CircuitryFTelettronicaGuitar Gear Improvements and PrototypesHudson ElectronicsJHSJPTR FXKlonLone Wolf AudioLovepedalMad Professor EffectsMXROrigin EffectsSkreddy PedalsSpaceman EffectsSuproThorpyFXVemuramWalrus AudioWamplerZvex+-
2019GPXPedalKnobs700V2.jpg

They are a key functional element to all pedals - in terms of working practicalities, look and tactile feel - and there are hundreds, if not thousands of possible varieties and variants, yet certain types of Knobs tend to dominate. Ever since we’ve had electrical devices - well over 100 years now, we have had a variety of control knobs and dials - initially metal, then bakelite, and now mostly modern plastics, hardened rubber and aluminium.

 

In doing this feature/guide I ...

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One Knob Wonders! - 17 of the Best One Knob Pedals

Black Arts ToneworksBoost and OverdriveCompressorDistortionDriveEarthQuaker DevicesFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzJ RockettJPTR FXJRADLone Wolf AudioLooperLovepedalMetal DistortionModulationMojo Hand FXMXRMythos PedalsOctave FuzzOverdrivePhaserReverbSilicon FuzzSkreddy PedalsSpring ReverbStomp Under FootTate FXTC ElectronicUtility+-
2019GPXOneKnob700-min.jpg

This feature was inspired by a couple of recent events, and partly as a counter to my highlighting of the really rather complex Empress Zoia Modular Synthesizer / Multi-Effects unit in my last feature. For the last week or so I’ve been working on updating my rather extensive Guitar Pedal Directory page which features all of the above, and around 2,000 more from across 160 or so pedal builders around the world.

 

I periodically review each of the sites referenced - to keep tabs on ...

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20 of the Best Compact Marshall Style Pedals

Alexander PedalsAmptweakerBossBrown Sound DistortionCatalinbreadDawner Prince EffectsDistortionDriveFriedman EffectsJHS PedalsLawrence Petross DesignLovepedalMarshall Style DistortionMenatoneMI EffectsMulti-DrivePettyjohn ElectronicsRamble FXSuhrThorpyFXWamplerZvex+-
2019GPX20BestCompactMarshallPedals700-min.jpg

After doing lots of more individual flavours of drive pedal overviews recently - it’s time to do another roundup of that most eternally favoured of amp distortion tones - the many flavours of Marshall. There are a few here that are based on JTM45 sounds - but generally I’ve separated the Bluesbreaker style pedals into their own category. Most of these are within that classic rock heyday range or sort of Plexi through JCM800.

 

I’ve tried to indicate most relevant Amp ...

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9 of the Best Compact Dumble Style Pedals

Boost and OverdriveDemon PedalsDumble Style OverdriveHermidaJ RockettJRADLovepedalMad Professor EffectsMenatoneMojo Hand FXMXRTanabeWampler+-
2019GPX9BestCompactDumblePedals700-min.jpg

This article is prompted chiefly by my fairly recent acquisition of the Demon Pedals Kondo Shifuku D-Style Overdrive - which brings my tally of Dumble style drives to three - or 7 kind of, depending on how you characterise these things. The very first Dumble Style pedal I acquired was the Mad Professor Simble - which I still love, but substituted eventually with the more versatile Wampler Euphoria. While both those are excellent conveyors of the kind of Dumble tones I was looking for - the ...

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20 of the Best Mini Fuzz Pedals - 2018 Update II

Amsterdam CreamBig Muff Style FuzzEl Músico Loco FXEWS EffectsFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzIbanezJHS PedalsKO AmpsLovepedalMaestro Style FuzzMalekko Heavy IndustryModulated FuzzMooerMXRMythos PedalsOctave FuzzOddball FuzzOneControlOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzPigtronixRainger FXRat Style FuzzSilicon FuzzSuper-Fuzz StyleSviSoundTone Bender Style FuzzZvex+-
2018GPX20MiniFuzz700-min.jpg

In going through all my various favourite mini Drive and Distortion Pedals, I thought I should round out the exercise by updating my preferred Mini Fuzz list which has grown and evolved over the years. The current number is 20 - with some additions, but also a number swapped out for better alternatives.

 

I haven’t really concentrated on Mini Fuzzes of late for whatever reason, but did put in a recent order with KO Amps for a sort of Skreddy Mayo Big Muff style mini. I’m ...

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Best of Mini, Compact, Medium and Large Tweed Drive Style Pedals

Boost and OverdriveDistortionDriveLovepedalMooerOverdriveTech 21 NYCTrue North Pedals+-
2018GPX4SizeTweedDrives700-min.jpg

Tweed Style Drives seem to fluctuate in and out of fashion quite frequently - there are a lot of discontinued Tweed pedals out there - like the Wampler Tweed 57 Drive and Way Huge Red Llama for example, while there seems to be a certain resurgence happening at the moment with a number of new pedals being introduced - particularly from smaller builders.

 

Both Greer Amps and Mad Professor launched new Tweed style pedals at the start of the year - namely the Tomahawk and Little Tweedy ...

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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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Comparative Guitar Pedal Acquisition Strategy - 120 Mini Pedal Edition

Boost and OverdriveBuild Your Own CloneBYOCDelayDistortionEl Músico Loco FXEWS EffectsFairfield CircuitryF-PedalsFuzzIbanezJHS PedalsKeeley EngineeringKHDKKO AmpsLovepedalMalekko Heavy IndustryModulationMooerMXRMythos PedalsOneControlPigtronixPitchRainger FXReverbSuhrTC ElectronicUtilityXotic EffectsXvive AudioZvex+-
2018AfBlg35CompMiniDirt700-min

Apart from one off larger pedals - like the new Origin Effects RevivalDrive, I feel that most of the pedal innovation is occurring at the Mini and Compact pedal sizes. The current ’shrinking’ trend is seeing several classic pedals being brought down to smaller enclosures. In the Mini pedal genre, I feel Xotic and Wampler have a lot to do with the increase in premium quality Mini pedals. Xotic via its trifecta of EP Booster, SL Drive and SP Compressor - of which I have all three in ...

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