Screamin' Blues Review

manufacturer: DigiTech date: 02/16/2009 category: Guitar Effects

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DigiTech: Screamin' Blues
The Screamin' Blues Overdrive/Distortion is designed for guitarists who need a pedal that responds to playing dynamics. Blues players in particular will love how the Screamin' Blues gives them total control of their tone. Playing lightly gives you a mild overdrive, but dialing up the gain and digging in hard will make the Screamin' Blues sing with ultra-rich harmonics and sustain.
 Sound: 9.7
 Overall Impression: 9.7
 Reliability & Durability: 9.5
 Ease of Use: 9.6
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (10) 29 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9.8
Screamin' Blues Reviewed by: darkarbiter7, on february 02, 2008
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 25

Purchased from: Ug Member

Ease of Use: This is a bit more difficult to use than other overdrives (the extra knob), but it's much easier to get a good sound out of it than a lot of other overdrives/distortions. But, all in all, it's quite easy. And I believe that it's moddable. not 100% sure though. // 9

Sound: This thing is very good. I am using it with my strat and Peavey classic 50. It's noisier than some overdrives, but it's not bad. This thing can get a huge range of sounds. You can go from a clean boost to a gritty crunchy overdrive, to a smooth overdrive, to a light distortion, to an old AC/DC crunch at it's highest gain settings. These usually all sound great. It slaughters my Boss SD1 in basically any way, and in some ways, it beats my modded tubescreamer. (the SD has a wider Overdrive range, and is more adjustable). Whatever you play, the screamin blues will fit it (maybe except for uber-scooped metal). Don't let the title fool you, it can get very dirty and nasty. // 10

Reliability & Durability: This thing is more of a tank than Boss pedals. The shell is incredibly tough metal, and it weighs about 2 pounds (an estimate). This thing can handle years of brutal stomping. I probably wouldn't ever gig without a backup, but I don't think this thing would even need one. // 10

Overall Impression: I play blues and rock. This is a very good match. I think this may be the best dirt box in it's price range. Maybe except for it's cousin, the Bad Monkey. It's just super versatile, and it has a huge array of good sounds. Whatever your heart desires, this pedal could probably handle it. I kind of wish it had a mid control, that'd make it perhaps the perfect pedal under 100 bucks. // 10

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overall: 9.8
Screamin' Blues Reviewed by: xcx0156, on january 25, 2007
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Ease of Use: This pedal is very easy to use. A little experimentation and common sense is all that's needed to find that great sound from this pedal. The manual was complete but then again, people Who have used stompboxes before would find little use for it (I had to check the manual on how to release the pedal to gain access to the battery compartment). Since this was my first DigiTech stompbox. Everything else was perfect. The catalogue that came with it though, was way cooler than the manual. // 10

Sound: My current setup is as follows: Highway 1 Strat, Dunlop GCB95, DigiTech WH4, DOD Tuna, Boss CS3, Electro-Harmonix Big Muff NYC Reissue, DigiTech Screamin' Blues, Electro-Harmonix Small Stone, Boss PH3, MXR Phase 90, DigiTech Digidelay, Electro-Harmonix Holy Grail, Electro-Harmonix Small Clone, Ebtech Humbox Eliminator, Boss NS-2, Marshall TSL122. It is a relatively quiet pedal when it is on my effect chain. On itself it does not hum at all even when I am in a quiet room. Hendrixian tones can easily be achieved on this pedal. As I mentioned earlier, all it takes is a little experimentation. The distortion is very transparent, keeps the tone of your guitar. Setting the gain to max reveals surprising sustain from a pedal I consider more of a booster. I use this pedal to create a little chunk and crunch from the fuzz of my Big Muff. // 9

Reliability & Durability: This is a very dependable pedal. I think it is bullet proof. If thrown at your head, you'd probably have a serious concussion. This pedal was surprisingly heavy the first time I held it. I use it on gigs without backups. DigiTech pedals are really reliable. // 10

Overall Impression: I play in 2 bands, an alternative/grunge band and a Rage Against The Machine Tribute band. On my own I also try to learn the fine ART of blues. this pedal is a perfect match for me because it plays a major role in my chain of effects and it gives me the tones I need when I use the pedal by itself. This pedal is a cross between the Boss Blues Driver and the Ibanez TS-9 and it took all the great aspects of these pedals and fused them together. If it were stolen, I would definitely buy another one (I hope not though. Because here in the Philippines, once someone steals from your pedalboard, everything else comes along with it). This pedal is perfect. // 10

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overall: 9.3
Screamin' Blues Reviewed by: jamesdjharrod, on october 01, 2007
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 38.43

Purchased from: eBay

Ease of Use: It's a really simple to use pedal, single effects, clearly labelled control knobs and a big enough stomp pad that you don't have to think about treading on it. The manual that it came with was quite handy, but I'd already used a few DigiTech pedals, so nothing new really. And I love the battery compartment, because you can change batteries really quickly, so if it died while playing Live it wouldn't be the end of the world. // 10

Sound: It sounds great, and as the name suggests, it can really scream. I use it with my Gibson Faded V, a Fender Vibroverb amp or sometimes a little Marshall, and it always sounds great. I play a lot of classic rock, and I've found that the pedal works great forgetting a Jimmy Page sound (everything turned up), a Richie Blackmore sound (high and low at 5, gain at 8) or a very authentic Michael Schenker sound (high up, low down, gain very high up). To really make it scream, I combine it with a Crybaby at about three quarter tilt. What the manual describes as a "Screamin' Lead" effect (low at 4, high at 10, gain at 10) is particularly good. Think "solo to Spanish Castle Magic". Yes, it's that good. // 10

Reliability & Durability: I've played with it Live loads of times, and I'll admit that it has screwed up once. I was there, halfway through Burn when suddenly my guitar sounded all clean. Changed the battery, still clean. Turned out that when I'd literally jumped on it during Kickstart My Heart I'd knocked the circuit board loose. But that was quite easy to fix. I always use a backup for everything, and I back this up with a very old MXR pedal which is what I used to use before I got this. // 8

Overall Impression: I play classic rock, punk (real Ramones-style punk), classic metal (Judas Priest stuff), blues and Grunge. The pedal works well for everything except particularly heavy Grunge, so yes it's a good match. I've been playing quite awhile now, and I've got a Gibson Faded V, a Fender Stratocaster and an Epiphone Hummingbird. My pedals are a very old (early '80s) MXR distortion pedal, a Dunlop Crybaby, and a DigiTech DigiDelay. I'm not really a big fan of pedals, and I normally use three at the most. It's unlikely that it would get stolen (it weighs a ton and is currently afixed to my pedal board) or lost (it's electric blue and attached to a board) but I would probably get another one if it was. However, I wish it had a mid control, so that I could cut all the mids out. // 9

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overall: 10
Screamin' Blues Reviewed by: GraceKim, on august 28, 2008
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 75

Ease of Use: This is an Overdrive/Distortion pedal. It has four controls: Level - controls the volume Low - adjusts bass frequencies High - control adjusts higher frequencies Gain - adjusts the amount of distortion. It comes with a small manual. The device is so easy to use that one really need not consult the manual. Just adjust the effects until you get the sound you want. If you want a boost of volume for a solo, you've got it. If you want to filter out lower frequencies to get more squeel, you've got it. If you want heavy distortion, you've got it. // 10

Sound: It produces a great sound. I use a 10W solid state amplifier in a bedroom which doesn't produce a very high quality sound at all. This pedal even through the cheap amp produces an excellent sound. With mild distortion one can get close to a BB King Lucille type of sound. With the distortion cranked up, one can get a Vintage metal sound along the lines of Def Leppard. // 10

Reliability & Durability: The device is made of metal. It's very sturdy. All the components are made of good quality materials. There's not much flexible plastic in this thing. The pedal has a rubber coating where it comes in contact with the foot thereby reducing any possibility of slippage. It uses a 9v battery that is simple to change. It would take a lot to damage this thing. I expect it to last years and years. // 10

Overall Impression: I bought this to get a blues tone similar to Albert King or Johnny Clyde Copeland. I have a Gibson Les Paul Studio and a 10w solid state amp [I know I have to get a better amp:( ]. I don't quite get that sound with my cheap amp, but the improvement in sound is astounding. I also wanted to be able to, with the distortion, get a Judas Priest metal type of sound, and even with my cheap amp I can get that sound. I also get a good Malcolm Young sound. // 10

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overall: 9.5
Screamin' Blues Reviewed by: ShameofaNation, on february 16, 2009
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Ease of Use: Easy pedal to use with the simple knowledge of what the four controls are. Level(Volume) Low(Bass) High(Treble) Gain(Distortion). But small ajustments make a very noticable difference in sound so don't turn turn too much if you want a very specific tone. It comes with a manual but that shouldn't be needed. // 9

Sound: My setup is an Epiphone SG Prophecy GX and a Crate V18. This pedal makes some awesome soundsa if you know what your doing. When the level is turned up more than about 7 it gets a bit buzzy but nothing much. This pedal is great for bands like Led Zepplin, AC/DC, Queen ect. Great pedal for hard/classic rock and blues. // 9

Reliability & Durability: The don't call it a stomp box for nothing, dis thing is very sturdy and well built. I once dropped it and there were no dents or anything. This pedal would make a deadly weapon. I would definitley gig with this thing. This pedal should last for years to come. I trust this pedal 110%. // 10

Overall Impression: I play lost of hard/classic rock. This pedal gives me that perfect sound I'm looking for. It gives of so many sounds from bassy blues to trebley rock. Another great thing is how cheap it is, you get more than you pay for. I recommend a power adapter because the battery is a pain in the butt to get out. If this pedal were stolen or broke I would get a new one in a heartbeat. I recommend this pedal to anyone that like blues or rock. // 10

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overall: 9.3
Screamin' Blues Reviewed by: leondb, on april 06, 2007
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 49

Purchased from: Easy Music Hawaii

Ease of Use: Pretty simple. If you know what you want, it shouldn't take very long to find the right sound. As with all DigiTech manuals, I wouldn't even bother reading them. I feel it's better to listen and adjust then, to look at presets. How hard can a stomp box be? It isn't a multi-effect pedal so ease of use is perfect. // 10

Sound: I play a PRS SE Singlecut, Line 6 Spider II HD150 half stack, Crate GLX, and I use it side by side with the DigiTech Grunge and Hyper Phaser. The Grunge Pedal is great for the heavier music my band plays, but is too much for the classic rock songs we play, so I needed a pedal that was a compromise between distortion and Overdrive. I tried the Bad Monkey, but didn't think it had enough gain when it was set high. The Hot Head was a little strong for what I wanted. The Screaming Blues hit the nail. Lower level overdrive is perfect, but it can also put out a nice distorted tone that isn't over-powering like the grunge pedal. // 10

Reliability & Durability: I can depend on it's rugged metal build, and will gig with it. The only thing I hate about DigiTech stomp boxes is the flimsy battery prongs! I won't even bother trying to use a battery since these things break so easily! I broken 2 of 3 within the past 6 months, and haven't changed either of my other 2 pedals more than 3 times each. // 8

Overall Impression: My band plays '60s-modern rock. This pedal combined with the Grunge Pedal is almost all I need for distortion. The Digiverb, Multichorus, and Turbo Flange are my next stomp boxes to get. Love the tone, hate the battery prong, you will see this in all of my DigiTech reviews. And I chose this pedal because it was somewhere in the middle of the Bad Monkey and Hot Head, with the perfect compromise of overdrive and distortion. // 9

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overall: 10
Screamin' Blues Reviewed by: mikehislop, on april 26, 2007
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 70

Purchased from: Music Go Round

Ease of Use: The factory sounds in the books are really screaming blues like it says on the pedal. it's one of the few pedals that actually does exactly what it is supose to do. The manual is fantastic, it tells exactly what and how to set it up. I don't currently know what firmeare is or what the revision # is. But my unit isnt upgraded, factory standard and rocking. // 10

Sound: I am using a little Crate 15GT with it but I plan to buy a Fender FM 65 so it should sound even better then. The distortion isnt loud even on max, a very nice feature. The effects can be toned down or way up depending on what you want, a very versitile pedal with bite too. The sound goes from Clapton to Hendrix to Skynard and even GN'R too. A distortion pedal is not considered this pedal in my opinion, it's really an Overdrive pedal that should be way more than it is. // 10

Reliability & Durability: This pedal has one draw back, it sucks up the batteries in one day of playin you can go through 1 or 2 batteries and you can accidently leave it on and then it's dead. At a gig ide say bring a battery and be prepared to Switch if you play heavy and have it on a lot. Or buy the power cord, that would be a very wise buy in my opinion. // 10

Overall Impression: This pedal suits me perfectly, for classic rock to metal and countrie it rocks.I've been playin for a while now and it suits my Austin and Fender well. I do not wish this pedal had any thing else except maby a 2nd effect like reverb since my amp only has distortion. If I lost it or it was stolen ide buy it again in a heartbeat. I like everything but the battery use. Otherwise it's the best pedal I've played for under 100 bucks. // 10

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overall: 9.3
Screamin' Blues Reviewed by: VLVTRVOLVR13, on august 11, 2007
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 50

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Ease of Use: This pedal was extremely easy to use, just like the other DigiTech ditortion pedals, it had four knobs to adjust the volume, gain, lows, and high, parameters. Plug in the DC adapter, or use a 9-volt battery, step on the Switch and play! There's nothing to it, a very easy pedal to find the tone your looking for in a matter of seconds with some easy tweaking. // 10

Sound: The Blues Screamer, or Screamin' Blues, is the next pedal up in terms of Hotness in the DigiTech Distortion Pedal Line of pedals. It shares very similar sonic properties to the Bad Monkey Overdrive pedal, although this pedal starts to branch out into the distortion side as well. This makes the Screamin Blues ten times more versatile because not only can it act as an excellent booster for a lead sound, it also comes with enough gain to get a good raunchy rhythm sound. It certainly wont satisfy the appetites of Distortion crazy metal heads, and it might not even be enough for most modern rock guitarists, but for anyone looking for a good blues overdirve pedal, but also wants to be able to kick up some extra dirt, should deffinately take a look at this pedal! My friend and I played this pedal through a Stratocaster and a Crate V8 tube amp. We were able to get some really good rhythm and lead sounds, bands that came to mind were SRV, Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, RHCP. // 9

Reliability & Durability: I really felt comfortable using this pedal, and I feel like it would not require you to have a back up pedal at a gig. Made with a very solid body, this pedal could deffinately handle some stomping, even night after night on the road or just for band practice. // 9

Overall Impression: For me, a fan of Smashing Pumpkins and Velvet Revolver, this pedal wouldn't suffice as a distortion pedal. However, I also listen to a lot of the bands I mentioned up above, so this pedal could either be a hit or miss depending on how much gain you really need. As a lead pedal, the Blues Screamer is awesome, I'd love to use one on my distortion when I take a solo. The pedal is very affordable, and I might replace it if I really felt like it was an imperative Tool to capturing my tone. Otherwise I would say you can't get to much better for the 50 dollar range of effects pedals, the Blues Screamer great (relative to it's price). // 9

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overall: 9.8
Screamin' Blues Reviewed by: Elusive, on april 30, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 30

Purchased from: UG Member

Ease of Use: I bought this pedal on a whim and it was just for the heck of it and I was surprised by the sounds it makes. I don't play with anything realy expensive so I don't get many choices for distortion or Overdrive but this little thing puts great sound into anything I have pluged it into. // 9

Sound: I currently play out of my Strat and Kustom 25w amp and it sounds great in between these two, it gives whatever you have a little boost without overdoing it and you can acheive sounds from blues to rock and even jazz or metal if you try hard enough (but I don't see any real hardcore metal coming from it) I managed a few clapton sounds from just this pedal alone so it has a lot of potential to it. The effects are clear and not overdone. // 10

Reliability & Durability: This thing is a tank, when the package came my mom through it across the house on one of her rants and I was a little worried, but it was fine. This thing is hard metal, and I would test to see if it was bullet proof but I like the sound to much to take the chance. If you get this pedal don't worry about over using it, with it's tough design and firm complexion you can stomp on it for hours without even chipping the paint. // 10

Overall Impression: I play many style of music from 50's through a little of today, from blues, jazz, rock, metal, and any variation of the previously stated and it fits in so well with my sound. I personaly didn't own a box before this one so I was always using friends when we jammed and this was a great first pedal, I would buy it again in a heart beat and in fact I am planning on getting a few more DigiTech pedals in the near future. The only thing I wish it had was the ac adapter but battery is so much nicer that it's not realy a loss. // 10

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overall: 9.8
Screamin' Blues Reviewed by: evhdawg999, on july 01, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 50

Purchased from: Daddy's Junky Music

Ease of Use: This pedal is very simple as most distortion or overdrive pedals are. There is a treble and bass knob, volume, and gain knob. The treble and bass in themselves will change the pedal's sound all together with just a few adjustments. There is no manual of course since it's just a simple distortion pedal. Changing batteries is unique though, like many DigiTech pedals, the pedal is opened by using the ends of your cords by pressing in on the two small buttons on the side of the pedal. // 9

Sound: I like to go Classic and use just a distortion/overdrive pedal with a wah pedal (although it sounds just as amazing with all of my other effects as well). I use a Epiphone Les Paul Plus Top most of the time and it just blends perfect with the sounds this pedal is capable of. The sound is very clean noise wise. It's mostly based on how hard you play. If you play really soft then the sound will automatically dim down on distortion but if you play harder, the sound well does what it says, screams. It is an incredible pedal for a company that I don't usually take that much interest in. Since it's such a versatile distortion pedal I get the sound of many of my favorite guitarists. Jimmy Page, Slash, Joe Perry, a little bit of Eddie Van Halen and even some Zakk Wylde if you get it right. // 10

Reliability & Durability: I've used this pedal at countless shows and gigs. I rely completely on this pedal for distortion. I really have to say that this pedal is my main squeeze. I choose this pedal over my other overdrive/distortion pedals always. Plus it weighs a ton and barely ever scratches. // 10

Overall Impression: My style has always been the blues but I have always played classic rock and I've found just the way to replicate those sounds with this pedal. If this pedal was lost or stolen, I'd probably beat the kid who stole the pedal first, then if I didn't get it back I would definitely go buy the same pedal. What I love most about this pedal is the fact that it is sensitive to the strength you play at. If I hadn't had nine volt adapters for my pedals I would probably hate how you have to remove the nine volt battery with the cords. // 10

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