Price paid: $ 112.56
Purchased from: George's Music
Sound — 10
I use this as so: ESP LTD F-50 with DiMarzio Evolution bridge and Air Norton neck pickups - good quality cable - Metal Muff - good quality cable - Carvin SX-300 solid state head - Ibanez ISC412 cab. It really makes a difference when you use good, sturdy cables, otherwise you end up with scratchy noises and fuzz when you motion around. It keeps its clean as long as you are conservative with the EQ and Top Boost (a great feature). You can blast the distortion all the way with close to 0 feedback. The distortion is just as intense at 5 or 6 as it is 10 though. Great professional quality distortion. I am able to mimic my favorite metal bands (Dio, Iron Maiden, PanterA, Metallica, Ozzy) it's the real deal! Sounds great with/without Top Boost, and the boost comes in handy when you need it (solos, leads, whole songs). A raging pedal.
Overall Impression — 10
I play metal, rock, and ska. This thing is deffinitly the best pedal I have ever purchased, I would suggest you getting one! I have been playing for about 3 years, and I'm in a band. I own a POD Xt Live, and the sounds don't compare to this, it's it's own pedal (Metal Muff) it's not replicating anything but it's own sound! No regrets. If this were stolen, I would kill the person and buy a new one. I love the pedal, favorite out of various pedals and even amp distortions. I compared this to a DS-1, PODs, ProCo RAT's, DigiTech Pedals, nothing comes close! A cool feature would be a noise filter (built-in) that automatically adjusts to your settigs. Also an adapter would be nice.
Reliability & Durability — 9
Yes this thing is built like a tank, heavy metal sound encased in heavy metal! I would deffinitly use this at a gig (and just did over the weekend) without a backup. Very strong, stomp your heart out of it, it will look the same as it did the day you bought it. Very durable, knobs too! The only flaw with it, is that it does not come with an adapter, so I would give your budget a little bit of leeway so you can run to radio shack and buy one. It does seem to have an integrated short-life battery, I always keep it plugged in (it cannot run off of batteries such as 9 volts, or any kind in that matter) my adapter shorted in the middle of a show and it kept it's life for a good solid 2 hours. If you don't have it charged it sounds like a Behringer pedal.
Ease of Use — 8
I got one of these babies for Christmas, and boy I'll tell you, it gets the job done. There's no software or firmware (unlike my PODXT Live, which can be a total pain to use sometimes). So it takes minimal knowledge to control and find tones with this pedal. Great pedal but I wasn't impressed with the manual. It comes with a yellow sheet of paper with very basic, basic, notes on how to use the product.