Price paid: € 100
Purchased from: Olimpus Music
Ease of Use — 8
This pedal is a great pedal with a lot of sounds in a small box. It is easy to get a good tone out of it. It does not sound like a tube saturation but has it still sounds great. The pedal has 3 knobs, distortion, filter and volume. The distortion allows you to control the gain. Volume allows you to set unity gain of if desired boost or cut when engaging the pedal. The Filter knob allows you to adjust the tone of the pedal. This version has a status LED. Some older variant models did not have this.
Sound — 9
This pedal has a lot of different sounds. The distortion knob allows you to go from overdrive tones, to distortion to fuzz. Then the filter knob allows you to go from fizzy, solid state saturation to a filtered and scooped, aggressive tight sound. The use of germanium diodes in this product instead of silicone diodes found in the other RATs allows this pedal to have a smoother distortion compared to the others. It also sounds full and tight as the germanium starts distorting earlier. The downside of germanium diodes is that they are not as efficient as the silicone counterparts, thus, this pedal requires the volume knob to be set at a higher position to achieve the same level. I prefer this over the Silicone version. I find this pedal perfect to compliment a clean amp, in my case a Fender Hot Rod Deluxe II. It is great for lead playing allowing to get compression and sustain. I like to boost it with a Dyna Comp for even more sustain and screaming leads. works well with modulation and delays too.
Reliability & Durability — 8
The pedal has a solid steel case. The knobs feel really heavy duty and everything feels rock solid. The main feature that I do not like is that where the top part and bottom part of the case meet, there is a gap, through which dust can get to the electronics. I've got quite a number of compliments on this pedal's sound by fellow musicians at gigs. This pedal allows me to get a consistent sound every location I play. I can rely on this pedal for the distortion sound as it never broke down and sounds good in every situation.
Overall Impression — 9
I like this pedal for a lead playing over a clean amp. This pedal allows me to get a great tone. It does work well with a lot of pedals. I use it with Electro-Harmonix Small Stone and Small Clone. It also works with the Boss DD-3 and DM-2W. The downside of this pedal is that due to the germanium diodes being less efficient than the silicone diodes it has a lower output than other RATs. The circuit could have been optimised for those diodes as unity gain is about 2 o'clock on my unit. I have compared it to the other RATs and to a couple of Big Muffs. I prefer the germanium sound of this pedal. This pedal is my main lead tone. In conjunction with the DM-2W through a Fender Hot Rod Deluxe.