M116 Fullbore Metal review by MXR

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Ease of Use: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.8 (82 votes)
MXR: M116 Fullbore Metal

Price paid: A$ 230

Purchased from: Actually 230 NZD from local store

Sound — 10
Keep in mind that this is named a "fullbore METAL" pedal, and if you're using it for anything else, you're probably going to hate it. What it DOES do, it nail it's niche completely. This pedal will easily give you the best and most dynamic crushing distortion tone on the market, and cheaper than alternatives too. You're not going to get away with trying to play soft rock with it, but you'd have to be crazy to buy this for anything else! NOW, THIS MIGHT BE THE DECIDING FACTOR FOR YOU RIGHT HERE. People play this all the time in the shop and fall in love with the tone, take it home and it sounds like shit. Why? You are probably using a tube amp. This pedal doesn't like them and will sound tinny and terrible - To get the great tones outta this, you need to run it through bypass on a solid-state, or run it direct into your PA (I just run mine through a couple of 250watt Proels). Running it through a tube amp will almost always eat the tone, so beware! Noise gate is another orgasmic feature that allows razor sharp riffage to punch through your mix, and again, it's fully adjustable. I'm not going to downrate this for tone because of the tube thing, because it's due to user error. When used properly, this thing is just a perfect 10.

Overall Impression — 10
I play technical death metal, progressive, "djent", and thrash mainly. This absolutely takes the cake and I sold the amp I had when I bought it, as it became redundant as I only play through PA now. I've been playing about 7 years now, and I'm a tone freak on a budget (otherwise fractal axe-fx all the way; D ) and I'm happy to take this to gigs and the studio. If I lost this, or it was stolen, I'd replace it without a second thought, unless I saw the guy nick it from under my foot at a gig, in which case, he's getting a headstock to the noggin! Seriously, for a bone-crushing metal distortion, just stick this right into your PA and crank it. If you're using tube, use a splitter and have a footswitch available to cut out the middleman and put this straight into your cab when switching to your filthy distortion channel!

Reliability & Durability — 9
Do I really need to say anything about this? It's friggin' nuke proof. You could run it over with a tank! It's covered in a practically bulletproof metal case, feel free to use this as a bludgeoning weapon during a Zombie apocalypse because it'll crack skulls and never crack itself. There are only two problems really, the glow-in-the-dark plastic buttons controlling the gate and the scoop - But I've had this pedal for years with no issue so far, been pretty rough with it too. The other thing is you'll never want to play with batteries because it eats them. Buy the adapter.

Ease of Use — 10
Takes a bit of work figuring out the scoop and mid frequency knobs, but it's a fairly intuitive pedal and once you get the hang of it (takes about 5 minutes) you're set for life! Comes with a nice booklet with preset tones so even with single-coils, you can give your gat some hair on it's balls. Gate can be adjusted if you screw open the back, and if you're so inclined, so can fiddle with the rest of it too, it's all open and easy to get into.

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