DS-1 Distortion review by Boss

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  • Sound: 7
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Ease of Use: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.9 (442 votes)
Boss: DS-1 Distortion

Price paid: A$ 89

Sound — 7
I use this second in my fx chain right after a homemade tubescreamer. I use it with an Epiphone Les paul and a Fender FM 212R at the moment (if you want to know the rest of my gear check my profile). I usually use this to thicken up my Overdrive channel with a little crunch cos I use my tubescreamer for smoother sounds. This pedal has quite a few sounds from a smooth base-y dist. to a crunchy trebly dist., but not all of them are good. IMO you'd be better of going for the DS-2 and a big muff. But then most of the Boss Distortions and overdrives sound a little tinny to me

Overall Impression — 8
Trying not to be stereo typical, but I'm a big RHCP fan (they werent popular where I came from) and this does not help me get a Froosh tone at all. But then the rest of my gear doesn't really work towards an RHCP sound either, so I'm sure it would work ok with a Strat and a Marshall Plexi Head. I've been playing for about 8 years and there is one thing I wish I had asked before buying this: "Can I see the DS-2?" If it were stolen or lost I wouldn't buy it again because you can get the same sounds except better and more out of a DS-2 and the price isnt that different. Anything I wish it had? A DS-2 screen print.

Reliability & Durability — 9
It's a Boss. Batteries make it hard to gig without a backup, but I'm working on remedying the power situation. It wont let me complete the review without writing more here so I'll happily say that you could throw this at a concrete wall or drop it of the side of a small building and it would still work (believe me I know).

Ease of Use — 8
Its damn easy. There are 3 knobs: Tone, Level, and Distortion. Tone is how it filters the guitar sound; all the way to the left is A basier smoother distortion, all the way to the right a crunchier more trebly sound. Level=volume and distortion, well you can probably figure that out. The manual is pretty comprehensive, it explains everything and has plenty of suggested settings for you to try. I only gave a 8 here because its, "How easy is it to get a good sound?" It works but I wouldn't use it to record for most kinds of music. There are much better distortion pedals out there.

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