Lyon Distortion review by Washburn

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  • Sound: 2
  • Overall Impression: 3
  • Reliability & Durability: 1
  • Ease of Use: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 3.3 Poor
  • Users' score: 5.9 (11 votes)
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Purchased from: Target

Sound — 2
I'm currently using an Ibanez S470 with Infinity pickups, running it through a simple 26W Peavey Backstage amp. In defense of the stompbox, my amp sucks. As far as distortion goes, I thought it was pretty weak. The only way I could ever get decent distortion out of it was if I cranked everything up to max. If you have too much low and not enough high, it's too soft and the opposite really thins out the sound of your guitar. It's pretty raunchy, but there's no backbone to it. It doesn't help that Gain almost always has to be on max if you want any more distortion than what your amp can give you (including my crappy little Peavey). I mean, if you just want a solid, heavy metal type sound (I was always reminded of the music from the Dynasty Warriors series) and nothing more, this isn't too bad. Unfortunately, that's all it has to offer with very little variation.

Overall Impression — 3
I play metal (thrash/death mainly), and it's not bad. But again, you're limited to about one mediocre tone which you can get with just about any distortion pedal sold by someone like Boss or DigiTech. I wouldn't be suprised if an Overdrive pedal could get there as a matter o' fact. I've been playing for about a year and a half now and I am a thousand times happier with my DigiTech Death Metal distortion pedal than I am this (and I'm even looking to replace that). If someone stole it, I would probably find them and pay them for taking it off my hands so I didn't feel so guilty about not ever playing this thing (it was a Christmas gift).

Reliability & Durability — 1
This is a pretty poor piece of hardware when it comes down to durability. The stompbox itself is metal so I would assume it can hold up to wear and tear somewhat well, but the grip on the pedal comes off easily, the knobs are incredibly flimsy, and it's damn near impossible to change the battery without breaking something or losing the spring. What makes that such a big deal is that it actually sucks up the battery life when it's not plugged in, or even hooked up to a guitar and amp. You have to remove the battery whenever you're not using it if you have any hopes of using this pedal for more than an hour at a time. Oh yeah, the screws around the input/output jacks come undone quite easily, too. I would never use this at a gig, even if I had a million spares.

Ease of Use — 7
This is a nice little beginners distortion pedal. Wait. No it's not. Sure, you get some decent distortion for a cheap price, but it's not worth it. It has a simple four knobs, all of which are labelled accordingly (level, low, high, gain). It's setup like just about every other pedal ou might get from DigiTech, Boss, or DOD. Just know that battery changes are frustrating to say the least.

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