#1
I've decided to buy individual stompboxes instead of a multieffect. Personal preference I guess, and knowing that I won't use most of the effects present on a multi any way.

Recently I bought a Nano Big Muff Pi and I love it! Gives me that grungy/dirty 90s rock sound I wanted. This I added to a Line 6 M-3 stompbox emulator. Eventually I'd like to add a chorus, mod (flanger/phaser) and a distortion pedal to the rig.
Question is, which pedals would you recommend I get? My problem is that I cannot try any of them out because I live on a small island. Style of music: predominantly 90s rock, grunge and some metal (anything from doom metal to modern).

I looked at several pedals, most of which were quite common in the 90s. The list includes: Proco Rat, Tubescreamer, boss DS1/DS2, Sansamp, small clone, poly chorus, boss noisegate, mxr phase 9, mxr super badass...

As noted above, looking to buy a distortion, chorus, flanger/phaser pedal. My question is: have any of you had any experience (good or bad) with any of these pedals? If so, which would you recommend I get? Or perhaps I should get one not mentioned on the list?
#3
What island? (I ask because it may determine what sites we can refer you to for shopping.)
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#4
Quote by Will Lane
The Big Muff is a ~distortion pedal. What are you trying to achieve with the other distortion pedal you are looking to purchase?

What amp and guitar are you using?


I thought Fuzz and distortion were different? I might be mistaken.

Guitar: I have a Fender American Strat, and a MIJ Squier Venus (this one has a single pup and a humbucker). My amp is an old Brownsville Thug 65W that has a clean and a gain channel. Clean is really nice, gain is nothing to call home.
#5
Quote by dannyalcatraz
What island? (I ask because it may determine what sites we can refer you to for shopping.)


Aruba. I can order from Guitar Center, Ebay and Reverb. Haven't tried Musician's Friend or other sites yet.
#6
Quote by R3-AUA
I thought Fuzz and distortion were different? I might be mistaken.

Guitar: I have a Fender American Strat, and a MIJ Squier Venus (this one has a single pup and a humbucker). My amp is an old Brownsville Thug 65W that has a clean and a gain channel. Clean is really nice, gain is nothing to call home.
I found hardly anything on that amp! You may be better off looking into investing in a better amp. Fuzz and distortion are different, but people classify the Big Muff as a "fuzztortion." If you're looking for a "metal" voiced distortion pedal that works nicely with a clean amp, Amptweaker's line of effects are great from what I hear. Not sure how you would get them, though.
Last edited by Will Lane at May 10, 2016,
#7
Quote by Will Lane
I found hardly anything on that amp! You may be better off looking into investing in a better amp. Fuzz and distortion are different, but people classify the Big Muff as a "fuzztortion." If you're looking for a "metal" voiced distortion pedal that works nicely with a clean amp, Amptweaker's line of effects are great from what I hear. Not sure how you would get them, though.


Thanks! The amp was sold at Sam Ash back in the 90s I believe. They're decent but nothing over the top. I'm considering getting a Marshall. But thanks for the info, I will look into this brand.
#8
Quote by Will Lane
Fuzz and distortion are different, but people classify the Big Muff as a "fuzztortion."

Eh, I'd argue that fuzz is a type of distortion, but specialised enough that people generally categorise them differently.

As far as the pedals listed in the OP, I have a couple of thoughts. The Tubescreamer is a great sounding pedal - though it'll play nicer with some amps than others because of its big mid boost - but it's been prolifically cloned and you have options by the dozen. You can go a lot cheaper with something like an EHX East River Drive and get a pretty faithful reproduction (hell, my first pedal was an Arion Tubulator which I believe came in south of £20 and was only a couple of resistors and a sturdy chassis away from the real thing). Or, for not far off Ibanez' price eminently solid offerings from Seymour Duncan (the 805) or Way Huge (the Green Rhino) among, no doubt, numerous others, will give you more EQ options that will help you hit the right spot with your amp's voicing. So yeah, with Tubescreamers you can really shop around.

As far as the Phase 90 and Small Clone are concerned, they're both great sounding pedals with a well-deserved reputation, but also very basic levels of control. Personally with any sort of modulation I think it's worth having separate rate and depth controls. For a one knob phaser, EHX has the Small Stone which is cheaper than the Phase 90 and has a slightly different sound that you may or may not prefer (there's at least one direct comparison to be had on Youtube), as well as the Bad Stone which has a bit more control and can be set on one position rather like a cocked wah, while MXR obviously has the more costly Phase 100 which has an extra control (fuck knows what it does but it's there). Phasers are not really my area of expertise, though.

As far as chorus is concerned, the Small Clone has the advantage of being a great sounding pedal for next to nothing, but there are, as always, options with more control (albeit for significantly more, because I don't think there's really much on the Small Clone's level at the same price), such as the MXR Analog Chorus, which I can vouch for as sounding beautiful and having a great deal of control for such a little pedal. Of course, if you splash out and grab yourself the Polychorus you're golden for just about everything modulation-wise, but it's always nice to have options.
#9
A used Visual Sound Jekyll & Hyde V2 Dist/OD would be a good option, easily found on Reverb for @$95 or less. The new V3 version from TrueTone (same company, different name) would also be a good one, but might be a bit pricey when you're trying to buy a bunch of pedals. Either one will be built like a tank and will cover most of the styles you want. The OD is based on the Tubescreamer design, FWIW.

The H2O V2 or V3 by the same company is a pretty sweet Chorus/Echo, and a used V2 will again be @$100.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#11
That Thug amp seems to be a cheap Fender Princeton knockoff...I'm willing to be that you can do a lot better if you go for a new amp and then invest in pedals if needed.

Off the top of my head I'd suggest you look into Peavey Valveking or Marshall DSL40C.
#12
Here's a good flanger:
https://reverb.com/marketplace/effects-pedals?query=subdecay%20starlight%20flanger%20v2

Here's a good phaser:
https://reverb.com/marketplace/effects-pedals?query=keeley%20phase%2024

I have those.

I don't have the analogous pedals from Catalinbread or Earthquaker Devices, but their products are excellent, so I'd expect either company's flangers or phasers to be worthy of consideration.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at May 11, 2016,
#13
Quote by R3-AUA
Aruba. I can order from Guitar Center, Ebay and Reverb. Haven't tried Musician's Friend or other sites yet.

The MF family of stores should work, as should Sweetwater, Sam Ash and (I think) zZounds, along with some other smaller retailers.

In fact, some manufacturers do direct sales. So if you find something you want, but none of the big retailers sell it, there's no harm in trying to contact the makers directly.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at May 11, 2016,
#14
Quote by K33nbl4d3
Eh, I'd argue that fuzz is a type of distortion, but specialised enough that people generally categorise them differently.

As far as the pedals listed in the OP, I have a couple of thoughts. The Tubescreamer is a great sounding pedal - though it'll play nicer with some amps than others because of its big mid boost - but it's been prolifically cloned and you have options by the dozen. You can go a lot cheaper with something like an EHX East River Drive and get a pretty faithful reproduction (hell, my first pedal was an Arion Tubulator which I believe came in south of £20 and was only a couple of resistors and a sturdy chassis away from the real thing). Or, for not far off Ibanez' price eminently solid offerings from Seymour Duncan (the 805) or Way Huge (the Green Rhino) among, no doubt, numerous others, will give you more EQ options that will help you hit the right spot with your amp's voicing. So yeah, with Tubescreamers you can really shop around.

As far as the Phase 90 and Small Clone are concerned, they're both great sounding pedals with a well-deserved reputation, but also very basic levels of control. Personally with any sort of modulation I think it's worth having separate rate and depth controls. For a one knob phaser, EHX has the Small Stone which is cheaper than the Phase 90 and has a slightly different sound that you may or may not prefer (there's at least one direct comparison to be had on Youtube), as well as the Bad Stone which has a bit more control and can be set on one position rather like a cocked wah, while MXR obviously has the more costly Phase 100 which has an extra control (fuck knows what it does but it's there). Phasers are not really my area of expertise, though.

As far as chorus is concerned, the Small Clone has the advantage of being a great sounding pedal for next to nothing, but there are, as always, options with more control (albeit for significantly more, because I don't think there's really much on the Small Clone's level at the same price), such as the MXR Analog Chorus, which I can vouch for as sounding beautiful and having a great deal of control for such a little pedal. Of course, if you splash out and grab yourself the Polychorus you're golden for just about everything modulation-wise, but it's always nice to have options.



Thank you for the info, highly appreciate it! The EXH East River does indeed sound great (from Youtube vids). I'm going to look into it.

You can get the MXR Analog Chorus on Reverb for practically the same price as the Small Clone. But like you pointed out, I think the added control on the MXR will definitely make it a much better pick. The Polychorus is a bit out of the budget at the moment...maybe some day!

Have you ever had the chance to play Catalinbread's Dirty little secret? Or maybe a Metal Muff? I think that added mid boost sounds great!
#15
Quote by dannyalcatraz
Here's a good flanger:
https://reverb.com/marketplace/effects-pedals?query=subdecay%20starlight%20flanger%20v2

Here's a good phaser:
https://reverb.com/marketplace/effects-pedals?query=keeley%20phase%2024

I have those.

I don't have the analogous pedals from Catalinbread or Earthquaker Devices, but their products are excellent, so I'd expect either company's flangers or phasers to be worthy of consideration.


Loved that phaser! Plus the added controls are always welcome. Thanks!!
#16
Quote by dannyalcatraz
The MF family of stores should work, as should Sweetwater, Sam Ash and (I think) zZounds, along with some other smaller retailers.

In fact, some manufacturers do direct sales. So if you find something you want, but none of the big retailers sell it, there's no harm in trying to contact the makers directly.



Thanks! Then there's always Reverb or Ebay for second hand gear too
#17
I use both sites expensively...errrrr...extensively.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#18
Quote by R3-AUA
Or maybe a Metal Muff? I think that added mid boost sounds great!

Can't say I'm a fan...but I'm also a bit of a boutique junkie, so I probably have some bias against certain inexpensive pedals, if I'm honest. Still, price and availability ( case you need a replacement are important factors to consider, especially if you ever intend to gig. There's reasons you'll see Boss pedals on the boards of guys who can afford any pedals they want.

Besides the aforementioned Jekyll & Hyde for metal distortion, I'd look at the Red Witch Famulus, the Emma Pisdiyauwot, and the Empress Heavy.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#19
Quote by dannyalcatraz
Can't say I'm a fan...but I'm also a bit of a boutique junkie, so I probably have some bias against certain inexpensive pedals, if I'm honest. Still, price and availability ( case you need a replacement are important factors to consider, especially if you ever intend to gig. There's reasons you'll see Boss pedals on the boards of guys who can afford any pedals they want.

Besides the aforementioned Jekyll & Hyde for metal distortion, I'd look at the Red Witch Famulus, the Emma Pisdiyauwot, and the Empress Heavy.


That Empress blew me away!!!! too bad it's out of my price range even on Ebay! For now I guess I'll have to go for the Jekyll and Hyde. Thanks for all the help!
#20
I have both of them. I think you'll like the J&H. It is a pretty versatile and well-made pedal. Just make sure you get the V2- it has a raised back portion that helps protect the knob settings. And its enclosure is MUCH stronger than the V1's.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at May 11, 2016,
#21
the J&H is nice, you may also want to look into the fulltone GT500, similar thing.

if you want a good and reasonably priced phaser, i love my cmatmods phaser. <$100 used pretty easily, i think i got mine for ~$80

for chorus i would recommend a malekko, that is my favorite one in the price range, and i own several. the footprint is tiny too. i would love the red witch chorus, but its pricey. again under <$100.

i am not a fan of the metal muff either. sounds like a swarm of pissed off bees flying in a beer can.
WTLT 2014 GG&A

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alright "king of the guitar forum"


Quote by trashedlostfdup
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Quote by andersondb7
youre just being a jerk man.



****** NEW NEW NEW!
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Resentments and Rambling from a Guitar Junkie
---> http://trashedengineering.blogspot.com/
#22
I already suggested the VS H2O Chorus/Echo, and was going to suggest another chorus pedal from my collection...AND I DONT HAVE ANY!!!!


All the others I'm thinking of are on my G.A.S. List- clearly, I have some SERIOUS shopping to do!
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#23
Quote by dannyalcatraz
I already suggested the VS H2O Chorus/Echo, and was going to suggest another chorus pedal from my collection...AND I DONT HAVE ANY!!!!


All the others I'm thinking of are on my G.A.S. List- clearly, I have some SERIOUS shopping to do!


i like my H2O a lot. it would kill two birds with one stone. or four birds with two stones?
WTLT 2014 GG&A

Quote by andersondb7
alright "king of the guitar forum"


Quote by trashedlostfdup
nope i am "GOD of the guitar forum" i think that fits me better.


Quote by andersondb7
youre just being a jerk man.



****** NEW NEW NEW!
2017-07-07 2017-07-07 Update and a Chat On Noise Constraints *** NEW FRIDAY 7/7
2017-04-13 RUN AWAY from COMPUTERS!!! TCE? RANT ALERT!!!
2017-03-02 - Guitar Philosophy 1001- Be Prepared For the Situation (Thursday 2017-03-02)
2017-02-21 How to Hot-Rod the Hell of your Stratocaster for $50! (Tuesday 2017-2-21)
Resentments and Rambling from a Guitar Junkie
---> http://trashedengineering.blogspot.com/
#24
Four, I'm thinking...and their death cries will be sooooo melodic.


Just added the TrueTone V3 H20, J&H and VS-XO to my eBay watch list...
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at May 12, 2016,
#25
Quote by dannyalcatraz
Four, I'm thinking...and their death cries will be sooooo melodic.


Just added the TrueTone V3 H20, J&H and VS-XO to my eBay watch list...


you still need a double trouble .

what are you thoughts on the fulltone GT500 in comparison to the J&H?
WTLT 2014 GG&A

Quote by andersondb7
alright "king of the guitar forum"


Quote by trashedlostfdup
nope i am "GOD of the guitar forum" i think that fits me better.


Quote by andersondb7
youre just being a jerk man.



****** NEW NEW NEW!
2017-07-07 2017-07-07 Update and a Chat On Noise Constraints *** NEW FRIDAY 7/7
2017-04-13 RUN AWAY from COMPUTERS!!! TCE? RANT ALERT!!!
2017-03-02 - Guitar Philosophy 1001- Be Prepared For the Situation (Thursday 2017-03-02)
2017-02-21 How to Hot-Rod the Hell of your Stratocaster for $50! (Tuesday 2017-2-21)
Resentments and Rambling from a Guitar Junkie
---> http://trashedengineering.blogspot.com/
#26
Never been near a Fulltone in my life. Good rep, though.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#27
Quote by dannyalcatraz
I already suggested the VS H2O Chorus/Echo, and was going to suggest another chorus pedal from my collection...AND I DONT HAVE ANY!!!!



Forgot to mention: this is definitely going on my pedalboard! I'm sure I can get that same Nirvana/Small Clone Chorus sound using this pedal, but it's much more dynamic!

On a side note: which pedal would you recommend for a "heavier" distortion? One that's more appropriate for a more modern type of metal sound. Preferably something around the $100 price range (used). Not sure the J&H will do that (?)
#28
The search for "heavier" is why I bought a Red Witch Famulus, Empress Heavy, and may yet buy an Emma Pisdiyauwot and Okko Dominator.*

The Emma is available for @$150-175 if you're lucky.
https://reverb.com/item/2092005-emma-electronics-pisdiyauwot

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eq8E9gUP1PI&sns=em

I know- still more than you want to spend. Well, there are also the Rocktron Metal Embrace and Third Angel distortion pedals. Each is going to be cheaper, but I don't know if either is going to be more capable than the J&H.
https://reverb.com/marketplace?query=rocktron%20metal%20embrace%20distortion
https://reverb.com/marketplace/effects-pedals?query=rocktron%20third%20angel%20distortion

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-IePKwF70S4&sns=em


* Full disclosure note: I am a pedal junkie who will never be satisfied, and I'm also building multiple boards. The fact that I'm buying more distortion pedals has absolutely nothing to do with what I think of the pedals I have.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at May 12, 2016,
#29
Back to chorus pedals for a mo- consider the Earthquaker Devices' Sea Machine. It's a nifty, powerful and well-made chorus pedal. The V1 version of it can be had right at your target price. The V2 version (shown in the demo video) is more expensive, but is also much more compact.

https://reverb.com/item/2220714-earthquaker-devices-sea-machine-chorus-v1-used#description-tab
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#30
What amp do you have?
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
#31
Quote by dannyalcatraz
The search for "heavier" is why I bought a Red Witch Famulus, Empress Heavy, and may yet buy an Emma Pisdiyauwot and Okko Dominator.*


The Emma is as heavy as one can get and still sound great! I'm seriously digging it!! The Metal Embrace was also pretty decent, wasn't too convinced about the Third Angel. Way too much high gain, making it sound a bit too 80s metal. But now I'm having my doubts about the J&H. It too has started to sound similar to the Third Angel ....I think I should just splurdge a little and go for the Emma! They can be bought for $150 I see. But that extra $50 will be worth it

dannyalcatraz, many thanks for your help man! Sorry for asking so many questions. My concerns when it comes to buying pedals is due to my location. I'll have to order and ship them. Can you imagine ordering a pedal to find out you hate the sound. First of all, I won't be able to return it. Secondly, selling it would also be difficult (small island- tiny market!). That's why your tips and opinion is very important to me. Appreciate it!
#32
My motto ought to be "I spent money so you don't have to."

I'll say this: the J&H is among the first 10 or so pedals I ever bought, and even though I have other, pricier, "better" pedals, it is still one of my go-tos. Because of it, I DIDN'T buy the Rocktrons afterwards, much as I like them. Instead, I went looking for OD/Dist pedals that delivered other tones. So, if you find yourself wanting to play 80s metal, classic rock, dirty blues...well...anything nasty but short of modern metal, it's a pedal worthy of consideration.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#33
Just a heads-up: if you're lucky, one or more of the pedals you want may be a part of the 15% sale Reverb is having until midnight CST. Just a few more hours to go!

https://reverb.com/sales/1-day-pedal-sale
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at May 13, 2016,