Price paid: $ 43.45
Purchased from: Musiciansfriend.com
Sound — 8
I decided to buy this after hearing my friends, so it wasn't purchased on price alone. It sounds just like my bands other guitarists Russian Big Muff with everything except volume set to twelve o' clock, with the volume knob actually being there. For the price it's a great pedal. I'm currently running this through a Fender Frontman 25R which I plan to upgrade to an Orange Crush 30 soon, along with a Boss CE-5 Chorus Ensemble, and I'm currently using a Dillion DR522 PRS copy with an ebony fingerboard. Not sure if it's just the setup, but I can nail all sorts of distortions with just the changes on the knobs on my guitar. From Hendrix fuzz to Clapton Cream-era distortion, Jimmy page's sounds, even Black Sabbath fuzz a la Iron Man. I can get all sorts of different tones from this simple box. I suppose it makes sense, as, after looking through PDF's of manuals, this is apparently a reissue of the 1969 EH effect. So far I haven't had a single bit of buzz from it. I may just have bought a good unit, but unless you walk right up to the amp, there's little chance of hum, buzz or any noise that you don't want. In addition to the overdrive/fuzz effect, it also makes a very good signal booster and gives a guitar that already has huge sustain enough to make me confident it can hold a note for literally a minute without the sound fading. A quick note for those wanting to get multiple types of gain from it; it's all in your guitars controls. If you want Overdrive, set volume to about eight. For fuzz, ten. For sustain and signal boost, roll off the tone knob. Really playing around with it is the way to figure it out. All that being said, I wish it had a few more knobs just so I could change the type of sound I get or use it without the signal booster.
Overall Impression — 9
My band plays all sorts of rock from the 60's to the late 90's and write alternative rock based on Cream-style Blues rock and late 70's-80's hard rock, and with a few chances to my guitars settings, this thing suits any kind of distortion I need perfectly, except basic, tube-like Overdrive, but both the Orange Crush 30 and my current amp can get that with the gain channel. I've been playing for four years and so far have five guitars, and, except for my acoustic, I only use the PRS copy out of those. Otherwise I'm using every bit of gear I have in my current setup. This thing fits in perfectly and it's incredibly small for what it does. If this were stolen, I would buy another since the price doesn't dig too deep into your wallet, especially for something made in the united states. That made in USA factor sorta gives you a "feel good" moment where you say to yourself it wasn't made with sweatshop labour. While at the store, I compared this thing to a Boss DS-1, Boss SD-1, EH Double Muff, EH Little Big Muff and an EH Russia muff. This thing won out for price, performance and the fact it suits my style perfectly. If you need a blues-rock/hard rock fuzz, Overdrive or distortion, this is your pedal.
Reliability & Durability — 9
It's light, but it isn't without heft. It's about as heavy as a Boss pedal and also has a metal chassis. So far it hasn't let me down at all and has shown impressive battery life, and, while the four-screw battery compartment has me worried about replacing the battery at gigs, I figure if I put a fresh battery in each show, no worries. It definitely seems durable and I would be willing to gig without a backup.
Ease of Use — 10
One volume knob and an on/off button/switch. Dead simple. It came with a manual, but really that just explains the basics of a pedal(not disconnecting it drains the battery, etc). Electro-Hamonix is used or has been used by all sorts of guitarists I like, so I figured it'd fit into my system. There is a problem if you don't understand what everything on this does.