NDR-1 Nova Drive Review

manufacturer: TC Electronic date: 08/07/2012 category: Guitar Effects
TC Electronic: NDR-1 Nova Drive
I use the NDR-1 for rock and metal and I have been playing pretty much every day for over 22 years.
 Sound: 8
 Overall Impression: 9
 Reliability & Durability: 8
 Ease of Use: 9
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
review (1) pictures (3) user comments vote for this gear:
overall: 8.5
NDR-1 Nova Drive Reviewed by: shreddinater, on august 07, 2012
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Price paid: A$ 420

Purchased from: Ellaways

Ease of Use: I actually bought this pedal for my TC Electronic G System Ltd because it only takes up 1 pedal loop and therefore I could take my Boss OD-1 and Boss MT-2 out of the setup freeing up another loop. The Nova Drive also comes with a midi "Y" cable therefore linking to and communicating with my G System so any setting I have on my Nova Drive is saved at the same time as saving the G System preset. This is absolutely awesome. The NDR-1 has 18 preset slots. When linked to my G System I can also use the Vyzor G System computer editor to edit the Nova Drive parameters as well. Good manual but I live for manuals so I might not be the best person to ask. Besides TC Electronic has a user forum that is second to none. The users are very passionate about their gear and happy to help. // 9

Sound: Does this pedal replace these Boss pedals you well may ask? I would say the Nova Drive does a great job of the Overdrive side (OD-1) of things but as far as the Boss Metal Zone MT-2 I think it falls a bit short. Great for hard rock but in my opinion the distortion gets a bit grainy and hyped when pushed. I use this set-up with a Peavey JSX120 and various Ibanez "S" series guitars and in theory it is best used when mixed with a mix of amp distortion and Nova Drive. I achieve this by using a modified relay cable from my G System to my Peavey JSX120 to change between the amps 3 channels and then apply the correct amount of Nova Drive distortion and Overdrive to each of the G System presets then save the preset on the G System. I also set the presets volume using the Nova Drive because I find it is much quicker to get an even volume level across all presets on the fly. By getting a happy medium between amp distortion and Nova Drive I can get a more natural sounding tube distortion. I also use a Ibanez TS9DX to smooth things out if needed. // 8

Reliability & Durability: Built well even if the Overdrive and distortion toggle buttons are a bit on the small side. These buttons are also pretty close to alot of parameter buttons and knobs but that's an acceptable downside to a pedal that only takes up two thirds of the real estate that 2 Boss pedals would take up. I like how all the leads come in from the back and not the sides. The fact that I use this pedal linked to a G System means that alot of the NDR-1's wear and tear is taken out of the equation because once it is set the G System tells it what to do. // 8

Overall Impression: I use the NDR-1 for rock and metal and I have been playing pretty much every day for over 22 years. Before I bought the NDR-1 I always used Boss overdrives and distortion pedals and while they are great pedals they are always prone to being a bit noisy. By incorporating 2 pedals into one you are now in theory halving the noise. I really like this pedal and when it is linked with the TC Electronics G System it is a no-brainer. That has always been the limitations of the standard overdrive/distortion pedal - set it and leave it and only one setting. Now with the Nova Drive I can have a different instantly recallable overdrive/distortion setting on ever preset. In rock when quite often the sounds you use are very similar with the only real difference being how much dirt you use this is invaluable. There is a sense of comfort you get when you buy the best solution to a problem because it means you can move on and focus on other things and I will be using this for along time to come. // 9

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