We’re going to try and offer a quick glance at the major varieties of guitar pedal reviews. Here in part 1 we’ll cover the fundamentals.

We understand there are one million web sites offering insight for this topic, nonetheless its been our experience that they’re written by engineers, not musicians… they read like microwave manuals rather than a helpful resource… Anyway… off we go.

Boost

I can’t really milk over a few lines using this topic. It’s pretty cut and dry- a lift pedal will give your signal a volume boost – or cut, for the way you’ve got it set. Most boost pedals work as a master volume control allowing you quite a great deal of use.

So why do I want a boost pedal? To bring your guitar volume up over all of those other band throughout a solo, to operate a vehicle your amp harder by feeding it a hotter signal, to possess a set volume change at the press of a button.

Overdrive

When most guitarists talk about overdrive, these are talking about the smooth ‘distortion’ made by their tube amps when driven to the point of breaking apart. Overdrive pedals are created to either replicate this tone (with limited success) or drive a tube amp into overdrive, creating those screaming tubes beyond the things they normally could do without wall shaking volume.

So why do I want an overdrive pedal? Overdrive pedals can be used a boost pedal- so you get those inherent benefits, you’ll get some added girth to your tone in the distortion produced by the pedal. Most overdrive pedals have tone control offering you wider tone shaping possibilities.

Distortion

Depending on our above definition of overdrive, distortion is how overdrive leaves off. Within the rock guitar world think Van Halen and beyond for a clear example of distorted guitar tone. Distortion pedals often emulate high gain amps that produce thick walls of sound small tube amps are certainly not effective at creating. If you’re fortunate enough to use a large Marshall, Mesa Boogie, Diezel or other monster amplifier to generate your distortion you may not need to have a distortion pedal. But for the rest of us mere mortals, effects for guitar players are very important to modern guitar tone.

How come I needed a distortion pedal? You wish to be relevant don’t you? Even with large amps, like those mentioned above, distortion pedals play a vital role in modern music. They have flexibility that boosts and overdrives can not rival.

Fuzz

God bless Ike Turner as well as the Kinks. Both acts achieved their landmark tones through the use of abused speaker cabinets. Ike dropped his around the street walking in to Sun Records to record Rocket 88, the Kinks cut their speakers with knives approximately the legends already have it. No matter how they got it, their tone changed the planet. Some think of it distortion, some refer to it as fuzz, however, seeing the progression from the damaged speakers on the fuzz boxes built to emulate those tones, I believe its safest to call what Turner and Davies created/discovered was fuzz.

How come I needed a fuzz pedal? Ya like Hendrix, don’t ya? In all of the honesty, the fuzz pedal is seeing resurgence in popular music these days. Bands like Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson, Muse as well as the White Stripes rely heavily on classic designs on recent releases.

Compressor

The work of the compressor is always to deliver an even volume output. It makes the soft parts louder, as well as the loud parts softer. Current country music guitar tone is driven using compression.

Why do you really need a compressor? Improved sustain, increased clarity during low volume playing.

Modulation

Flanger

The earliest “flanger” effects were created in the studio by playing 2 tape decks, both playing the same sounds, while an engineer would decelerate or speed up the playback of one of several dupe signals. This is the way you can produce wooshing jet streams. The edge in the traditional tape reels is referred to as the flange.

So why do I needed a flanger? A flanger will offer you a new color to your tonal palette. It is possible to tolerate out one, but you’ll never get a number of the nuance coloring in the Van Halen’s, Pink Floyd’s, or Rush’s around the world.

Phase shifter

The phase shifter bridges the space between Flanger and Chorus. Early phasers were supposed to recreate the spinning speaker of the Leslie. Phase shifting’s over use could be heard all around the first couple of Van Halen albums.

So why do I needed a phase shifter? See Flangers answer.

Chorus

Chorus pedals split your signal into two, modulates one of those by slowing it down and detuning it, then mixes it in together with the original signal. The effect should certainly sound dexspky30 several guitarists playing the exact same thing as well, resulting in a wide swelling sound, but I don’t hear it. One does get yourself a thicker more lush tone, but it really doesn’t seem like a chorus of players if you ask me.

Why do I would like a chorus? Because Andy Summers uses one, and Paul Raven says so… that ought to be suitable.

Tremolo

Being a kid, did you ever enjoy the volume knob about the TV or maybe the radio manically turning it down and up? Yeah? Well you had been a tremolo effect.

So why do I needed a tremolo pedal? 6 words for ya: The Smiths ‘How Soon Is Now’

Delay

A delay pedal produces a copy of an incoming signal and slightly time-delays its replay. It can be used to generate a “slap back” (single repetition) or an echo (multiple repetitions) effect. Who amongst us can’t appreciate The Sides consumption of guitar pedal reviews delay throughout U2s career?

Why do I want a delay pedal? See Flangers answer.

Wah

A variable band-pass frequency filter… Screw everything- you know what a wah wah is… its po-rn music! It’s Hendrix! It’s Hammett. It’s Wylde. It’s Slash.