Saturday, April 3, 2010

Boss GT-8 Guitar Effects Processor Review

When it comes to guitar effects, Boss pretty much has it covered in the quality/affordable area.  When it comes to guitar multi-effects pedals, Boss definitely can create some awesome processors.  Here I wanted to do a quick overview of the Boss GT-8 Multi-Effects Pedal.

The unit has several different settings that can be changed for each effect and amp simulation.  If you have the time to sit down and tweak the settings you can get great sounds coming from your amp.  The manual is a great help in changing settings and is very detailed - if you have time to actually sit down and read it.  The GT-8 is a great pedal and does take a little time to get use to all the different settings, but once you do you will be very pleased!


This pedal sounds really, really good - especially for the money.  No, you won't instantly sound like your favorite guitarist who have $10,000 racks full of gear, but you can get close!  This multi-effects pedal includes all of your favorite Boss guitar pedals and more!  Some of the settings are weak and don't sound to great, like the acoustic simulator for example.  The amp simulations are great, but they don't sound like full blown tube stacks.


Like all other boss pedals - this thing is built to last.  You could drop it or stomp on it or drop a bomb on it and it would probably still work.  That is one of the best things about Boss pedals and they definitely didn't miss a note with the GT-8.  


Overall this multi-effects pedal is amazing!  I would definitely recommend this one over all other competition.  If you are in the market for a multi-effects pedal, be sure to check out the GT-8 - it will blow you away!  And hey, even if you are not in the market you should still check it out.  I would give the Boss GT-8 a 9.5 out of 10 - it is great!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Boss CE-2 Chorus Pedal Review

The vintage Boss CE-2 Chorus pedal with the Made In Japan label on the bottom plate seems to be the most desirable and this sought out Boss Chorus pedals. Let’s go over the specs this beautiful chorus pedal!  For starters this is a very simple to use two knob analog chorus with controls for Rate and Depth. One down side is that this chorus pedal is not stereo, but we can look passed that because of how good it sounds.  This pedal has a plug to use with a power supply which, like I always recommend, you should use instead of batteries. This chorus pedal, like most other Boss pedals, has LED when the pedal is engaged. This pedal is built like a tank - which is another redeeming quality about all Boss stompboxes.

So, how does the Boss CE-2 sound?  Well, it has a very warm analog sounding chorus much better than the Boss digital choruses. There is a lot of variation from very subtle soft chorus to a Leslie cabinet type sounds at the most extreme settings.  I think that’s great, many effects go down in volume, but this goes up slightly to help the effect stand out. The best way to describe the tone of this chorus pedal is  to say it has a warm and natural sound.  If you want, you can plug in an acoustic through this pedal and it sound beautiful as well.  I think these are definitely better than any of the new digital units being made today, they tend to sound very cold and well, digital.  

If you are lucky enough to come across one of these pedals, you better pick it up.  You definitely won't regret purchasing the Boss CE-2 Chorus Pedal.  I have read that you can pick up the bass guitar version of this pedal, which is easier to find, and it gives the same sound. Has anyone every heard it?  What are your thoughts on the Boss CE-2 Chorus Pedal?

Monday, March 29, 2010

Fulltone Full-Drive 2 Review

Let's review one of the greatest sounding overdrive pedals around, the Fulltone Full-Drive 2.  You can pick up the standard version of the Full-Drive 2 which is great for that chunky overdriven sound or for adding a beautiful, warm color to your amps distortion.  If I had to rate this on a scale of 1 - 10, it would get a 9 easily.  It is hard to review pedals, especially overdrive pedals, because sound is subjective and everyone has their own opinion of what "good" sounds like.  I will give you my take on this  overdrive pedal and hopefully you will agree with my opinion.  If you do, feel free to chime in and add information to the comments section - and if you disagree, please feel free to let me know why.  

The Fulltone Full-Drive 2 pedal is easy to use, consisting of volume, tone, overdrive, and boost knobs - all right on the front of the pedal. The volume knob is a “set and forget” knob that simply matches the effect volume to your guitar’s pickup volume. The tone knob, like the tone knob on most effects pedals, cuts or boosts the treble in your signal, and the overdrive knob dials in the amount of overdrive that will be applied to the guitar sound.  Like most overdrive and distortion pedals, this one is very easy to use and simple to dial in great tone.  Be sure to play around with the tone and the overdrive knobs - you can greatly change the sound by a simple twist of a knob.  The feature I really love is the boost knob which has a separate foot switch to activate it.  This boost really helps make sure your solos are heard loud and clear.

The FullDrive 2 is one of the best overdrives out there today for the price. If you are looking for a ballsy, tube-like sound then this is the pedal for you. This pedal can give you a crunchy, chunk overdrive that is great for rhythms or you can dial in a smooth, creamy tone for a nice bluesy solo. This pedal is especially good if you combine it with your amps distortion.  I personally like to use this pedal as something a little extra when I play my solos.  It gives me a little extra gain and sustain.  Remember, it has a built in boost switch that helps put your solos out front.

This Fulltone pedal is built like a tank. I would have no problem with dropping mind from a high place on a concrete floor. You can either power it by a 9-volt adapter or your classic 9-volt battery. I would recommend using always the power adapter for any pedal!

I think that this is a great pedal for anyone on its own or if you are looking for more out of your amps distortion. You can get a great warm tone out of this pedal - if you dial it in correctly.  You can get a very nice crunch sound of this pedal.  Also, you can get a nice sustain if you add this pedal on top of your amps distortion.  The boost feature is really the perfect touch for this pedal and I would recommend this pedal to any guitarist. For the money, and even just in general, the Full Drive 2 is an excellent pedal.   I hope that you found this Fulltone Full-Drive 2 review helpful - Rock on!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Ibanez TS808 Tube Screamer Review

I wanted to talk about and review one of my favorite overdrive pedals, the Ibanez TS808 Tube Screamer. This pedal has been widely used by a variety of big named artist - Stevie Ray Vaughn was one of the notable users in his time. Of course, they have modded versions of this pedal that give them different little characteristic such as more gain. It is hard to review pedals, especially overdrive pedals, because sound is subjective and everyone has their own opinion of what "good" sounds like. I will give you my take on this classic overdrive pedal and hopefully you will agree with my opinion. If you do, feel free to chime in and add information to the comments section - and if you disagree, please feel free to let me know why.  (Note that in this review I will be discussing the reissue of this pedal - NOT the original Tube Screamer.)

The Ibanez TS808 Tube Screamer pedal is easy to use, consisting of tone, level, and distortion knobs - all right on the front of the pedal. The level knob is a “set and forget” knob that simply matches the effect volume to your guitar’s pickup volume. The tone knob, like the tone knob on most effects pedals, cuts or boosts the treble in your signal, and the overdrive knob dials in the amount of distortion that will be applied to the guitar sound.  Like most overdrive and distortion pedals, this one is very easy to use and simple to dial in great tone.  Be sure to play around with the tone and the overdrive knobs - you can greatly change the sound by a simple twist of a knob.

The TS808 is one of the best overdrives out there today for the price. If you are looking for a ballsy, tube-like sound then this is the pedal for you. This pedal can give you a crunchy, chunk overdrive that is great for rhythms or you can dial in a smooth, creamy tone for a nice bluesy solo. This pedal is especially good if you combine it with your amps distortion.  I personally like to use this pedal as something a little extra when I play my solos.  It gives me a little extra gain and sustain.  It does color your tone a little bit - but its not a boost pedal, so you should expect it too.

The Tube Screamer is built like a tank. I would have no problem with dropping mind from a high place on a concrete floor. You can either power it by a 9-volt adapter or your classic 9-volt battery. I would recommend using always the power adapter for any pedal!

I think that this is a great pedal for anyone on its own or if you are looking for more out of your amps distortion. You can get a great warm tone out of this pedal - if you dial it in correctly.  You can get a very nice crunch sound of this pedal.  Also, you can get a nice sustain if you add this pedal on top of your amps distortion.  There are, of course, higher end - better sounding - overdrive pedals.  (Or, if you can find one of the vintage TS808 Tube Screamers, even better!)  For the money, and even just in general, the Tube Screamer is an excellent pedal.  A lot of people will recommend the cheaper version of this pedal, the TS9.  I, however, do not.  It doesn't even compare to the TS808, and I think that you would be much happier going with the TS808.  I hope that you found this Ibanez TS808 Tube Screamer review helpful - Rock on!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Line 6 DL4 Delay Pedal Reviews

So, I have heard a lot of people asking questions about the LINE 6 DL4 Delay and decide to pick one up a try it out myself. This pedal has been out for a while and has gotten some great reviews. It is hard to review pedals because sound is subjective and everyone has their own opinion of what "good" sounds like. I will give you my take on this delay pedal and hopefully, you will agree with my opinion. Let me know what you think of this pedal!

The Line 6 DL4 Digital pedal is easy to use, in my opinion, though it does have a lot of parameters that can be tweaked.  Each of the knobs on the pedal can greatly change the sound of the delay that you are getting from the pedal.  It definitely isn't just a plug in and it sounds great pedal - it will require a day or two of tweaking before you really get a feel for how good this pedal sounds.

This delay pedal is a great sounding pedal.  It has a wide variety of delays from digital, analog, a reverse delay, and everything in between.  The digital delays are exceptional, and I especially enjoy the stereo delay.  The analog sounds are fair, but like most other Line 6 units, they aren't quite dead on with the sound.  Overall, I would say this is one of the better sounding delay pedals for the money/amount of different delays.

I have heard a few complaints about the DL4 Delay not being to reliable; However, from my personal experience, it has been nothing but reliable.  I even dropped it once and it worked like a champ and didn't even scuff up.  The one thing that I would complain about is the battery use.  You really need to find an adapter to plug it in because this thing sucks up batteries.  

I would be willing to recommend this pedal to anyone.  As long as you are not looking for the best analog pedal in existence, then this pedal is perfect for you.  Of course, even if you are looking for the best analog pedal ever, I would still recommend picking one of these up.  Why?  Because you get a plethora a delays to chose from and it comes with 3 presets!  It also comes with a looper, while not the best, it is definitely a great thing to have. I know that this is kind of a general post about the pedal, but with so many parameters and things, it is hard to know what to talk about.  So, if you you have any other questions, feel free to ask!  And for just $250, you can pick up the LINE 6 DL4 Delay Pedal.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Digitech Whammy Pedal Review

In this post, I will go over the Digitech Whammy Pedal.  This pedal is widely used by a variety of big named artist - Tom Morrello, Herman Li, Steve Vai, etc.  This Whammy Pedal is a pitch-shifting pedal designed by Digitech.  Not only is it a pitch shifter, but it also can do harmonies (though most are cheesey and artificial sounding) Like most pedals, the original Whammy (DigiTech WH-1) is the most sought after.  In this post, I will give you my take on this classic pedal and hopefully you will agree with my opinion.  If you do, feel free to chime in and add information to the comments section and if you disagree, please feel free to let me know why.

The Digitech Whammy pedal is easy to use, it has a knob that will let you select whether or not you want harmonies or to shift pitch.  This happens by selecting what harmonies you want (3rds, 4ths, 5ths, etc.) or you can select the Detune or Dive Bomb options which really can be used for some cool effects.  One you have picked out whether or not you want to shift the pitch up or down an octave - or you just wanna do some cool harmonies - you simply rock the pedal back and forth to change the sounds... much like a Wah Wah pedal.  Very simple to use and creates a great effect!

Some of the harmonies sound completely fake (digital) and boring. After all, you can buy expensive harmonizers that sound amazing, so I tend to think that pitch shifting is the only real value of the Whammy pedal. Like I said earlier, it does have some cool features like detune and dive bomb which can give you some nice Van Halen sounds. I have played every type and style guitar through this pedal and it sounds just as good with all of them. Again, be aware that some pedals aren’t correctly positioned out of the box and might need to be adjusted to sound in key!

This pedal is a real beast!  I have had my pedal for several years and it works still works wonderfully! It took some beatings and has lots of scratches, but the pedal still works perfectly fine.

Overall, I would say the pedal is great for pitch shifting. If you don’t mind the digital sound, then this pedal is absolutely perfect.  If you prefer more realistic sounds, I would go with more of its more expensive competitors.  Good pedal, but not great. I would give the Digitech Whammy Pedal 4 out of 5 stars, if I were to rate it.  If you are on a budget for a harmonizer, or you just want one of the best pitch shifters around, check out the Digitech Whammy Pedal.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Boss DS-1 Distortion Pedal Review

In this post, I will go over the Boss DS-1 Distortion Pedal. This pedal has been widely used by a variety of big named artist - Steve Vai for example. Of course, they are modded version of this Boss pedal, but the basic tonality is still there. It is hard to review pedals, especially distortion pedals, because sound is subjective and everyone has their own opinion of what "good" sounds like. I will give you my take on this classic distortion pedal and hopefully you will agree with my opinion. If you do, feel free to chime in and add information to the comments section - and if you disagree, please feel free to let me know why.

The Boss DS-1 Distortion pedal is easy to use, consisting of tone, level, and distortion knobs - all right on the front of the pedal. The level knob is a “set and forget” knob that simply matches the effect volume to your guitar’s pickup volume. The tone knob, like the tone knob on most effects pedals, cuts or boosts the treble in your signal, and the dist knob dials in the amount of distortion that will be applied to the guitar sound.

The DS-1 distortion is a transistor-type distortion. If you are looking for a ballsy, tube sound then this is not the pedal for you. This pedal can give you a crunchy, chunk distortion or the classic fuzz sound if you set it just right. This pedal is especially good if you combine it with another good distortion pedal or your amps distortion. You will probably not like the all of tones you get, but you will find a few that are useful. Remember, by itself it sounds thin, but coupled with another distortion you can get some nice sounds.

Like most Boss guitar pedals, this one is built like a tank. I would have no problem with dropping mind from a high place on a concrete floor. You can either power it by a 9-volt adapter or your classic 9-volt battery. I would recommend using always the power adapter for any pedal!

I think that this is a great pedal for a beginner or if you are looking for more out of your amps distortion. You won't get a great warm tone out of this pedal. If that is what you need, look elsewhere. You can get a very nice crunch sound of this pedal. Also, you can get a nice sustain if you add this pedal on top of another distortions. But for $40, what more could you expect from the Boss DS-1 Distortion Pedal.