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28 of the Best Compact Overdrive Pedals - 2020 Ultimate Selection

Analog.ManAnasoundsBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBossCrowther AudioCustom TonesDemon PedalsDumble Style OverdriveFoxpedalFulltone EffectsGreer AmpsHamstead SoundworksJ RockettJackson AudioJHS PedalsJRADKlone and Transparent OverdriveMatthews EffectsMenatoneMythos PedalsOCD Style OverdriveOverdrivePaul CochraneSnouse Electric CompanyThorpyFXTimmyTrue North PedalsTsakalis Audio WorksTubescreamer Style OverdriveWampler+-
2020GPX28CompactOverdrives700.jpg

I periodically do these category round-ups, typically triggered by a pedal launch or two, as is the case in this instance. This is my own preferred Overdrive selection - intentionally as broad as possible - with actually 12 categories of overdrives, but could still be an even longer listing, and I’ve had to make some very difficult choices for the final selection even though it is relatively numerous at 28 strong. I would have liked to have included one from my so called ’Harmonic ...

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28 of the Best Compact Enclosure Compressor Pedals - 2020 Ultimate Selection

Analog.ManBarber ElectronicsBecos FXBondi EffectsBossCompressorDarkglass ElectronicsDiamond PedalsDryBell EffectsEarthQuaker DevicesEmerson EffectsEmpress EffectsFoxpedalFriedman EffectsGreer AmpsJ RockettJackson AudioJHS PedalsKeeley EngineeringMad Professor EffectsMXROhmless PedalsOrigin EffectsOvni FXPettyjohn ElectronicsTC ElectronicThorpyFXUtilityWalrus AudioWampler+-
2020GPX28BestCompactCompressors700V2.jpg

I’ve encountered a number of ’Best Compressor’ articles this year which I really felt were not fully representative of the very best of what is out there. That was the catalyst for this feature, along with a couple of new compressors I had not properly featured yet, and the fact that I’ve not done a Compressor round-up for a good couple of years now.

 

Pretty much all the compressors listed here are / were already known to me, while I picked up a few new ones ...

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22 of the Best Klon / Klone Style Pedals - Mini, Compact, Medium and Large - 2019 Edition

AnasoundsBondi EffectsBoost and OverdriveChellee EffectsDecibelicsEarthQuaker DevicesElectro-HarmonixFoxpedalGreer AmpsJ RockettJHS PedalsJRADKlone and Transparent OverdriveKTRMatthews EffectsMojo Hand FXMXRNordvang CustomProAnalog DevicesRYRAThorpyFXVFE PedalsWamplerWay Huge Effects+-
2019GPX18BestKlones700-min.jpg

This particular post was triggered by a recent video I came across which compared the various Mini Klon/Klone style pedals (Not Nano!!!) doing the rounds at the moment. I see lots of posts about the Mini Mosky Golden Horse on Pedalboards of Doom these days - but there is only one proper Golden Horse - and that’s the Decibelics one - more of that later.

 

After viewing the Mini head-to-head comparisons I then flipped across to the Australian Super Fun guy’s Klon review from ...

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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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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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24 of the Best Compact Overdrive Pedals - 2019 Edition

Analog.ManAnasoundsBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBossCrowther AudioCustom TonesDemon PedalsDumble Style OverdriveFoxpedalFulltone EffectsGreer AmpsHamstead SoundworksJ RockettJHS PedalsJRADKlone and Transparent OverdriveMenatoneOCD Style OverdriveOverdrivePaul CochraneSide EffectsSnouse Electric CompanyThorpyFXTimmyTrue North PedalsTsakalis Audio WorksTubescreamer Style OverdriveWampler+-
2019GPX24CompactOverdrives700-min.jpg

For this particular selection I tried to get in as diverse number of types, along with all the usual favourites - every year I have readers asking me why I left this one or that one out - so this year is the time for including Menatone in the selection. Obviously between years some pedals rise in prominence while others fall - my intentions are always to provide as broad a selection as possible while still covering all my own personal favourites.

 

There are a few new entrants since 2018...

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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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Comparative Guitar Pedal Acquisition Strategy - 210 Compact Pedal Edition

Analog.ManBearfoot FXBogner AmplificationBoost and OverdriveBossChase Bliss AudioCustom TonesDelayDistortionElectro-HarmonixFoxpedalFulltone EffectsFuzzGreer AmpsGuitar Gear RetailHamstead SoundworksJ RockettJackson AudioJHS PedalsJRADKeeley EngineeringKHDKMad Professor EffectsMI EffectsModulationMojo Hand FXMythos PedalsNobelsPaul CochranePitchReverbRockBoxSide EffectsTC ElectronicTimmyUtilityWamplerWren and CuffXotic Effects+-
2018AfBlg35BoostOverdrives700-min

I am known for writing lists and cross-tabulating and cross-referencing the contents thereof while I consider which is the best / preferred choice for me. Note that there is never really a ’best’ overall pedal, simply the one that best fits your circumstances and needs. I have lots of characteristics and attributes I look for - including a compact pedal enclosure size, with versatility and added smarts - great tone is sort of a given here. I an one of those tone-tweakers who quite ...

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24 of the Best Overdrive Pedals - 2018 Compact Edition

Analog.ManBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBossCrowther AudioCustom TonesDistortionDriveDumble Style OverdriveFoxpedalFulltone EffectsGreer AmpsHamstead SoundworksJ RockettJHS PedalsJRADKeeley EngineeringKlone and Transparent OverdriveMad Professor EffectsMI EffectsMojo Hand FXMythos PedalsNobelsOCD Style OverdriveOverdrivePaul CochraneRockBoxSide EffectsTimmyTubescreamer Style OverdriveWampler+-
2018AfBlg24CompactOverdrives700-min

As an update to last year’s piece, and in line with my slightly tighter real estate now (39 pedals), I have decided to go all out on compact format pedals on this occasion. As a subset of my ’12 Degrees of Saturation’ we are dealing with stages 2 to 6 in essence, which largely covers 6 families of overdrives in order of how I set their gain level (increasing amounts) - ’Klon’ type, ’Tubescreamer’, ’Dumble’, ’Blues Driver’, &rsquo...

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12 of the Best Klon Style Pedals

Bondi EffectsBoostBoost and OverdriveCentaurElectro-HarmonixFoxpedalGreer AmpsJ RockettJHS PedalsJRADKeeley EngineeringKlonKloneKlone and Transparent OverdriveKTROverdriveProAnalog DevicesRock Your Repaired AmpRYRAWampler+-
2018AfBlg12KlonStylePedals700

I will preface this article by bringing to your notice that if you want to read the very best overview of Klon pedals currently available, then take a look at Paolo De Gregorio’s piece on ’pedals.thedelimagazine.com’ a really impressive and comprehensive feature. For my purposes, I’m not really interested in covering absolutely everything, just those parts that appeal to me as a musician and pedal aficionado.

 

I first got on the Klon trail as such when I acquired...

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