Price paid: $ 63.2
Purchased from: Italmelody
Sound — 9
Like most distorion units, this one is compatible with any piece of equipment. Boosting the level in conjunction with the high end will obviously give you a lot of unwanted noise, but the settings are all very tweakable. In short, the Death Metal is very clean considering the blistering amount of gain that it pumps out. If you're looking for probably the heaviest-sounding distortion pedal there is out there, you're most likely going to be satisfied with this one. Although it was obviously meant for rhythym-oriented playing, many users will be surprised to find out that it can be used for some very interesting-sounding lead and soloing tones (especially when used with a delay unit).
Overall Impression — 10
This is a full-on metal-head's dream, so anyone looking for a simple distortion or Overdrive pedal might be knocked out by the punch that the Death Metal delivers. Even classic metal players (such as Iron Maiden or Judas Priest etc) might frown upon the powerhouse that this pedal is. So just know that this is not a distortion for the faint of heart. One thing that surprised me was the impact that it has. When I was out looking for a new distortion pedal to add to my rig, I was contemplating all the big hitters in the stomp box world (such as Boss, Line 6 etc). But upon hearing this one (and asking for it by name) I was stunned and immediately purchased it. I've had it for a while and some of the sounds I can get out of it are still blowing me away! One thing's for sure, if it were lost or stolen, I'd replace it in a heartbeat. If Death Metal (or anything with extreme distortion) is your kind of playing, than this is for you. Don't even bother with the "Metal Zone!" Trust me, the only thing I wish about this pedal is that there aren't many more like it out there on the market!
Reliability & Durability — 9
This unit is very dependable. It was built with a solid metal casing so that it can take a heck of a beating. Consequently, I'd feel very comfortable playing with one of these things on stage. Considering the durability of this unit, you probably won't ever need a backup. But considering the price, and the possibility of someone stealing it off of you, you can bet that a second (or third) unit would be well worth your while.
Ease of Use — 10
This is a very simple-to-use 3-knob distortion pedal and even easier to get great tones out of. If you're a (death) metal fan, you can even leave all the knobs on 0 (except the level of course) and see that it's still an awesome tone. Extremely simple to use, just turn the knobs and listen to the tones morph and never have to worry about the gain level (since it's always maxed out). And of course, the manual is practically worthless simply because you can work the pedal very easily (although the suggestions in the manual are quite powerful tones as they are).