Price paid: $ 200
Purchased from: online
Ease of Use — 10
Its slightly more complicated than the run of the mill pedal but set up great to be able to grasp the functions and understanding it within minutes was my experience. Great boutique drive pedal! There are 4 screws to take off the bottom panel exposing the internal switches to manipulate your choice of combinations for the drives in parallel. Flick a switch or two of how you want it configured and its back together within seconds. Everything on the pedal itself is well labeled and the functions will be familiar to anyone who has used a simpler effects pedal for sure.
Sound — 10
This is a great pedal for adding fuzz/overdrive/distortion to your guitar tone. It also employs hp/lp filters on separate drives for a versatility unlike any pedal I've seen. True bypass and the ability to toggle switches inside to customise any of the possible combinations is amazing. The pedal is very quiet and doesn't snap, crack or pop when activated or deactivated. I like to run the overdrive as a constant background effect and the secondary effect i use the crunch distortion to make nice heavier rhythm parts possible. This pedal is so versatile it can work for blues to metal. Theres an EQ as well so you can tame or enhance frequencies at the turn of a nob. The mid frequency knob is governed by a frequency switch for tuning in the option of 3 specific mid areas 500/250/2k.
Reliability & Durability — 10
The pedal has a super durable metal casing, great switches, led's are bright to be able to tell when it's enabled. It's well built all around like all empress stuff! I have brought it to 100 rehearsals and at least 50 shows! This is a strong build and empress effects prides themselves on reliability and professional gear! Even the knobs are metal and the switches for high pass/low pass filters are as well. These are handmade units so rest assured the internal components are crafted by people who care about quality. This unit has never failed me!
Overall Impression — 10
This is great for subtle overdrive to intense fuzz to mild distortion or crunch and even "lead" distortion types. Crunchy rhythm distortions work really well for thick rhythm guitar parts the type you'd hear from a jcm or something of that nature. The Overdrive is fantastic to compliment a clean guitar through a clean amp providing just a bit of that grit to give your tone that meat your looking for! The fuzz is gorgeous... Hit it hard and you'll find that racket fuzz of the '70s or subtly blend it in with the over drive or distortion... These drives work in parallel! Thats right multiple tones output from this pedal in a fantastically design parallel chain! Marvelous piece of ingenuity.