Sound — 10
I'm using this pedal with a Diezel VH4S halfstack and two Gibson Les Paul Customs (I have some other guitars that I'll pull out once in a while too). This pedal is really loud, just like all other Zvex pedals. The tone is very crisp and full, and really really nasty. The tone knob doesn't react like most tone knobs out there do, such as going from really trebely to really bassy (like on a Big Muff). Zach knows that the guitar's frequencies are basically in the midrange (a guitar is a midrange instrument. Ever wonder why nobody can hear you in the band with your mids turned to 0?) so he modeled the tone knob to change the mid-frequencies, from scooped to pushed. This allows you to create some very cool vintage-sounding octave effects, to some really, really, really gnarly metal grind octaves from Hell-Melvins type doom. Out of all of the Zvex pedals, this one is probably the most conventional one, and it kicks the shit out of every other Octave distortion that I've heard being made today (well, it sounds really good for what I want to hear). And, if you roll your volume knob down to about 2 or 3, the pedal will generate ring modulation sounds that are in fact very warm and organic sounding.
Overall Impression — 10
I love this pedal. I often run it in front of my amp slightly dirty to get this huge solo sound my God, does it sound awesome. If you're in the market for an octave distortion or just want to add some mayhem to your sound, take a look at this pedal.
Reliability & Durability — 10
Zachary Vex has lifetime warranties on all of his products, even if they're used. If something goes wrong, he's there to fix it and have it back to you ASAP. He has great customer support and really will go the extra mile for you.
Ease of Use — 10
The Octane III is set up like pretty much every other octave distortion pedal ever made. It has three knobs: in (drive), tone and out (volume). It's very easy to get great upper octave singing tones, and some pretty cool ring modulation sounds too.