Price paid: $ 70
Purchased from: Russo's Guitar Center
Sound — 7
I'm playing the pedal at home with my Squire Affinity Strat and Peavey Bandit 112 amp. I know some of you will stop reading at that, but at the store I played it with an American Standard HSS Strat and some mid-range Marshall product, I don't recall the model. On both setups I was struck by the quality of the pedal. In store I was playing it next to an Ibanez AD9, DigiTech DL-8, and MXR M169. Against all those pedals the GarageTone held up well. It was most similar in sound to the Ibanez AD9, which costs about twice as much. I did notice that with too much gain and too many repeats the pedal just makes this banshee-like scream, but you can do some pretty cool things with that by messing with the knobs on it, without even touching the guitar. I have yet to dial it in perfectly to match any particular artist, but I think it should be quite possible. Sound gets an 7/10, but compared to the pedal's price, it's an amazing value.
Overall Impression — 9
I play many different styles, but I focus on hard rock like Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple, older metal like Black Sabbath, and I also dabble in classical music for fun. The pedal suits those genres quite well, and I think it should work well for others as well. It sounds good clean and dirty. I've been playing for three years and this is my first delay pedal, and I am very glad that I bought it. I'd buy another in a heartbeat if something happened to it. I think my favourite thing about it is its ease of use and affordability. There are not many things I can think of to improve the pedal. It does its job well.
Reliability & Durability — 9
The pedal itself is made of .16 gauge steel, and the power button feels nice and solid. I doubt it would have any durability problems unless you were trying to break it. It runs on one 9V battery, which isn't that much of a problem. I would feel confident gigging with it without a backup.
Ease of Use — 9
The GarageTone series of effects pedals is Visual Sound's attempt at making solid tone affordable for everyone. This is the first pedal of their's I decided to buy, and so far I am quite pleased with it. It is very easy to use, just three knobs and the button to turn it on and off. The time knob controls the time between repeats, the repeat knob controls how many repeats there are, and the level knob controls the volume of the repeats. It doesn't take much time and effort to find a good setting for any kind of music if you just play with it. The "manual" was just one sheet of paper with a few recommended settings, but the controls are so simple, it's easy to figure out how to get the sound you want.