Price paid: £ 20
Purchased from: Internet
Ease of Use — 10
The pedal is easy to use. Manual schmanual... there's three self-explanatory knobs. Although I think I may have had some difficulty finding where the battery goes in. Not that I run it off a battery. As stated before I don't know if this pedal could turn a bad sound into a good sound (although for £20, it's worth a try). But if you've already got a decent sound and you just need a little more gain then the PB100 can definitely deliver. To get the best out of it you just have to sit down and have a fiddle. It doesn't take long to find sweet spots that sound best to your ears.
Sound — 8
For the price, I wasn't expecting much. I bought the pedal on the off chance I could use it as a simple volume boost for the FX loop of my amp (Mesa Dual Rectifier). Used in this manner, the pedal destroyed the tone and quickly ended up being shelved. BUT months later I thought I'd plug it in again for fun This time I used it for it's intended purpose in the preamp (duh, right?). It works rather well. It does what you'd expect... you can knock it on for some extra juice. Pedals like this shouldn't be used as the core of anyone's sound - that's the amplifier's job! But this pedal serves to augment whatever sound you have. I don't know what else to say other than it's a boost... it gives you a boost, it doesn't murder your sound and there's a nice bit of EQ flexibility via the bass and treble knobs. If you get any noise when you're not playing, that's gonna get boosted too, of course but the pedal itself isn't particularly noisy. Exceedingly good for the money, in my opinion!
Reliability & Durability — 5
I would gig this pedal. It's a typical design, seems pretty robust but the chassis is plastic rather than metal and the knobs can be wobbled, which you can't do with the knobs on my more expensive pedals. It won't survive armageddon like most FX pedals surely will but then again, neither will I. The on/off switching is excellent and the LED is waaaay brighter than my other pedals. Oh, and the power supply input is on the side, next to the guitar input socket. Personally, I find that annoying because I daisy chain and most power inputs are at the top (where they should be) but that might just be knit-picking.
Overall Impression — 8
I play extreme metal so we're talking high output guitars into a high gain amp. I also use an Ibanez TS-9 and Boss GE-7 EQ pedal in my preamp (and a Boss Noise Suppressor). The gain setting on my amp is quite modest while the TS-9 and GE-7 both give a fairly clean signal boost and a mid-frequency boost. They're usually left on, while the Behringer is kept as a last resort. I never normally need any extra juice it's nice to know it's there if I need it. If I didn't have the other pedals I would certainly be glad of the PB100 and use it all the time to get that extra bite out of my amp. The only reason I favour my other preamp pedals is because I like the mid boost. Besides that, the PB100 can hold it's own with other more expensive boost pedals.