DS-1 Distortion review by Boss

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  • Sound: 7
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Ease of Use: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 8.5 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.9 (442 votes)
Boss: DS-1 Distortion

Price paid: £ 40

Purchased from: RN'B Music

Sound — 7
I have the pedal plugged into an Marshall MG30FX, Dunlop Standard Crybaby, and a Fender American Telecaster. When on it intensifies the hum the is produced by the single coils, but this is unnoticable while playing. The sound it produces is moderately deep and pretty crunchy, it adds A LOT of sustain to your highs which is always great. It's great for beefing up a solo or lead break however the sound gets pretty screechy on high setting so I wouldn't recommend pushing the tone past halfway. I use it on the clean channel for an Oasis-esque sound, on the crunch channel for AC/DC or Airbourne riffing, on the 1st Overdrive setting for something that vaguely resembles Scorpions/Iron Maiden, and using it on Overdrive 2 results in screaming feedback and full on bR00talZ. Overall it produces exactly what I need, but I sometimes find myself that the sound could be deeper.

Overall Impression — 8
I play all styles of music ranging from soft blues to full on metal pounding, and it always gives me a welcome boost when doing leads, I've been playing for a year now and although pedals help your tone, most of it comes from your fingers. Slash or EVH playing my set-up would still sound like themselves. Overall I'm happy with it and I've got my first gig coming soon so I'll find out if it stands up to the challenge, but I reckon it will.

Reliability & Durability — 9
It's a Boss compact, it could survive a North Korean nuclear winter.Great build quality and a Solid Metal housing protect it from anything that you could care the throw at it. Battery life can be very suspect though, so I recommend buying an AC supply. Having owned it for 6 months it has been a rock in my rig and has always functioned perfectly.

Ease of Use — 10
3 knobs, input/output and a single linear stomp pedal. I'm pretty sure I could train a monkey to use this pedal. Manual describes everything clearly and even gives you a few sample settings, most of which are prety decent. Plug it in and your off. Tone control boosts high frequencies when its past the halfway mark and cuts them when below it, distortion knob explains itself, and level controls the volume of the output signal.

2 comments sorted by best / new / date

    metalhead_316 wrote: metallica used ds1 on kill em all.
    They mostly used JCM heads modified to have an incrdible amount of gain for their sound. They also used a boss distortion on it too, but i couldn't specifically find out which one. The DS-1 is currently used by both Kirk Hammet and Joe Satriani amoung others. It's a pretty good pedal.