Bulldog Distortion review by Vox

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  • Sound: 7
  • Overall Impression: 7
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Ease of Use: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 8.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.6 (45 votes)
Vox: Bulldog Distortion

Price paid: $ 150

Sound — 7
I plug it into my tube amp (clean channel) without any foreign boosters, so it comes first after my Gibson SG Standard and before every other pedal. The clean channel in my amp is slightly boosted. The sound is rather mediocre, kind of boring. It does have a tube color, whatever critics will say. Another advantage is that it is not noisy. I think a sort of denoiser was stipulated. The high gain channel (Gain 2) proved to be something I was indifferent to. I suppose it was merely a transistor booster. Anyhow, it does not improve the Gain 1 channel, but destroys all its tube character and overtakes it with some dark evil distortion. So when you first take this bulldog, you say "great, it's awesome" and you get bored with it very quickly after a while of playing. The crunch channel, however, is more or less, ok.

Overall Impression — 7
I bought it as I buy many other of pedals, just to listen to it and leave it if I find it's great. I play everything from blues to heavy metal for more than two decades. It's not a good match for my preferences, since I can buy something else for the same price. I have a whole bunch of pedals Vintage or ordinary and for me this one, bulldog, is yet another distortion, so if it were stolen, ok, I'm going to sell it, that's my answer. Once again, the crunch here is fine, the high gain was not very good for me, the "control panel" is complicated. I compared it to Maxon 880, Maxon 881, H&K TubeFactor, and the overdriven channel of my tube amp. All of them beat the bulldog.

Reliability & Durability — 10
I think it's ok with it, unless you will have to put down all the positions of your knobs when going on a gig. The batteries seem to run out even when it's resting in a drawer!

Ease of Use — 9
The design is pretty sophisticated. Without a manual I could only guess the purpose of those two channels. If it's a trick to demonstrate that the pedal takes after a genuine preamp, then I find it weird for a pedal of that class. At their website I could find only some marketing things, you know, like "adds extra bite to your fret burning maneuvers" or "you can independently tailor the second channel's hell-raising tone". Two channels with tone crunch and a high gain boost with two Vintage knobs for each one: gain and volume and the Gain 2 channel won't work when the Gain 1 isn't on. The bass and treble controls knobs are understandable, but the voice knob seems to add yet more treble or so. I just kept it at the zero position. Once again for this class of pedals it's a bit too complicated.

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