10 Bizarre-Sounding Guitar Pedals


Ultimate Guitar
10 Bizarre-Sounding Guitar Pedals

EMS Synthi Hi-Fli

Originally called the Sound Freak, the Hi-Fli was essentially an early multi-effect unit that combined fuzz, octave shift, ring modulation, phasing and resonant filters to generate synth-like tones. 
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Maestro Filter Sample and Hold

This pedal can generate a surprisingly vast palette of strange but wonderful tones, ranging from juicy, drippy envelope-follower funk to guttural auto-arpeggiator stutters.
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TOURETTES Boutique Guitar FX

If you think every 6 notes you play there would be someone shouting 'Ai!' or 'fuck off' you'll be disappointed. So was I. 
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MWFX Judder

Now, this is an example of a weird, but still charming sound.
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Gnomeratron VTF

 Name Gnomeratron WTF would probably suit this pedal better. 
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WMD Geiger Counter

Yes, it does sound like your guitar is radioactive.
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Maestro Ring Modulator

You know those bizarre, dissonant metallic boinks on ZZ Top’s “Cheap Sunglasses” and the closing theme of South Park? That’s the sound of a ring modulator.
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Maestro Rover

The Maestro Rover is a rotating speaker unit that not only looks like a UFO but sounds like one, too, as the speaker can rotate at exceptionally high speeds to create watery, warbling Doppler effects.
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Ludwig Phase II synthesizer

With a little patient tweaking, the Phase II can produce the sound of anything from alien conversations to spaceship landings.
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KORG Miku Stomp

Japanese anime-sounding pedal. Well, that's pretty much all you need to know.
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Know any weirder guitar pedals? Share them in the comment section below!

39 comments sorted by best / new / date

    No Earthquaker Rainbow Machine?
    If I ever need to record a dream sequence sound track for a 1970's sitcom, I'm getting this!
    This seems a lot more useful than most of the shit on the list.
    if the miku pedal would cost around 20$ i'd buy it just to satisfy my nerd needs, but for 100 bucks i would rather want something less useless
    A lot of one-trick ponies that you can barely find a use for.  You might be able to fit each into a song in some manner, then it collects dust.
    Geiger Counter is hugely flexible and should not be considered a OTP.  I know you didn't say all were one trick, but don't disregard the GC.  I have had one for years and I use it for tons of things like subtle overdrive, gritty distortion, fuzz, lofi glitchy fuzz, etc.  It certainly does "crazy" well but it also does many other more versatile things.  Plus, WMD is a kickass company with solid support.
    I'd have to hear some of your compositions to know how you make use of it.
    There are hundreds of wave forms and settings to mess with to bit-crush as much or as little as you'd like.  Between this PG article and Andy's PGS video, you should have plenty to know it's quite versatile.  https://www.premierguitar.com/articles/WMD_Geig...
    Not questioning the versatility, but the sound quality and making it fit into a good guitar tone.  But I get your point.
    I picked up the Miku pedal in Kobe. It does what it does fairly well, but the tracking isn't too quick. Novelty for the most part.
    Fuck me tha MIKU pedals sounds exactly like that creepy "i feel fantastic video".
    Mick Gordon actually used a Geiger Counter as part of his effects setup for the DOOM 2016 OST.
    can we get another article like this for budget pedals? I like the sound of a lot of these but they are seriously out of my price range
    I had an Electro-Harmonix Bassballs pedal for a few years. Those things made some weird predator sounding noises sometimes. I thought it was useful for a time, and some cunt stole it. Kind of miss that pedal.
    For what it's worth, Professor Frink is one of the most under-rated Simpsons characters out there. Right next to Hans Moleman. 
    John McLaughlin also used the EHX Frequency Analyzer. One of the channels on the Sabbath Paranoid solo has a ring modulator as well. Such a cool effect but difficult to use in a musical context.
    Korg Miku, just KNEW that one had to be on this list.  The one and only pedal to make your guitar sound like a demented Furby.
    Man, pedals are stupid expensive for what they do.
    Not really for how much design and work goes into them. Z Vex are overpriced but that's pretty much all due to the hand painted nature of them.
    At least zvex makes original and novel designs. I'm sick of the ~$200+ 'boutique' tubescreamer clones...
    It's funny you say that about the boutique clones since the pedal that put Zvex on the map is essentially a fuzz face clone with extra knobs to mess with the bias of the transistors and turn it into a screeching monster.  I agree though, overdrive is overrated especially tubescreamer clones. If you feel like spending a ridiculous amount of money on a TS get the $300 handwired one Ibanez makes that comes in the sick metal tin. I do like the plethora of $60-160 Klon Centaur clones so I don't have to pay $3000 for a real one. After playing with an entire board of Earthquaker pedals in a music store I think they have ZVex beat. Simple but nice enclosures without the $200 for a paint job that you feel guilty for stepping on and destroying over time.
    You could probably buy a snare drum from Lars' custom shop for that much. Would be just as useless.