Inexpensive overdrive pedals for tube amps

marksound

Strat-O-Master
Mar 8, 2010
865
OK
Tone City has several flavors of overdrive at affordable prices. Andertons has a few exclusive signature versions to boot. Danish Pete's Durple and Greg Koch's Lil Heat come to mind.
 

Butcher of Strats

Senior Stratmaster
Feb 28, 2022
1,528
Maine
To make an OD purchase inexpensive it might help to first determine what EQ you want.

"Transparent" is not a useful word on the internet!

So the TS family cuts bass a lot and adds a lot of mids, not transparent but some will still suggest them and some players asking for transparent OD actually like TS/ SD1 etc.

The DOD 250 family is pretty flat EQ and with gain down can deliver transparent clean boost.
OCD is in the family.

Marshall BB1 family is what it became when Analogman changed it and Josh at JHS copied Analogman.
Some like it, kinda transparent.

Klon family has way less mids and less bass cut than TS but is not quite flat.

MIAB with TMB can often be set clean and set for EQ, thus being transparent.
No TMB equals not transparent there.

Any clean boost pedals that get race reviews are probably not transparent.
Why rave if the pedal does basically nothing?

Thats what I like about the Klon circuit, it does just the right amount and is almost transparent, plus and a big plus: it splits highs and lows so it adds dirt to the highs while leaving the lows cleaner, at least in the middle sweep.
If you like a crunchy bottom and clear highs its the reverse of what you want.
 

NewStratLover

Strat-Talker
Dec 22, 2013
122
Indiana
I was hoping to keep it at 100 bucks or no more than 125.
Thanks man..

Do you have a budget in mind? I confess I’ve not tried Many of the cheaper ODs, but the one that I DID have luck with is the Joyo BluesMood. Very much based on a Keeley Modified Blues Driver, and sounded epic pretty much where-ever I set it. Word of caution though, its not quite transparent.

I’ve also played around with the Joyo Ultimate Drive. Couldn’t really get much out that one. YMMV of course, but it’s one I’d stay away from. Other than those aforementioned though…..


I guess it depends what you define as inexpensive.

I’m currently rocking the MXR Raw dog and Wampler Tumnus mini on my board, both as different low gain/high gain pedals, and an MXR Mini Booster pedal at the end for a solo lift. The Raw Dawg can push the amp almost into fuzz at times, and I’ve found the Tumnus brilliant if I keep the gain low but the level at around 2pm (ie as a clean-ish boost)

The pedal that’s REALLY surprised me though is the MXR Mini Booster pedal!!! Nice volume lift if you want it, and the internal trim pit allows you to add more gain if required. If I had to keep only one of those pedals, it would probably be the Booster
 

NewStratLover

Strat-Talker
Dec 22, 2013
122
Indiana
I was hoping to keep it at 100 bucks or no more than 125.
Thanks

Do you have a budget in mind? I confess I’ve not tried Many of the cheaper ODs, but the one that I DID have luck with is the Joyo BluesMood. Very much based on a Keeley Modified Blues Driver, and sounded epic pretty much where-ever I set it. Word of caution though, its not quite transparent.

I’ve also played around with the Joyo Ultimate Drive. Couldn’t really get much out that one. YMMV of course, but it’s one I’d stay away from. Other than those aforementioned though…..


I guess it depends what you define as inexpensive.

I’m currently rocking the MXR Raw dog and Wampler Tumnus mini on my board, both as different low gain/high gain pedals, and an MXR Mini Booster pedal at the end for a solo lift. The Raw Dawg can push the amp almost into fuzz at times, and I’ve found the Tumnus brilliant if I keep the gain low but the level at around 2pm (ie as a clean-ish boost)

The pedal that’s REALLY surprised me though is the MXR Mini Booster pedal!!! Nice volume lift if you want it, and the internal trim pit allows you to add more gain if required. If I had to keep only one of those pedals, it would probably be the Booster

@NewStratLover
The DuelGun I posted is $73
Oh wow. Cool. Thanks man. I will check it out.
 

Oldiemurphy

Strat-O-Master
Jan 23, 2022
613
Austin, TX
If you want to go super budget, the Dolamo built in China is about $26 on Amazon. The sound is somewhere between a Klone and an RC Booster. I added the cupcake knobs lol. 20220701_193200.jpg
 

J-Mart

Senior Stratmaster
Jul 17, 2020
1,192
Tx
You could score a Boss Sd1 for like 40 bucks on reverb. Also, I saw your recent post about a distortion and owning a Ds1. Look up the Wampler JCM Mod for the DS1. Like 6 parts to change and that pedal will sound dramatically better. You wont even need to boost it with anything, it will rip.
 

Wound_Up

You can call me Duane 😁
Jan 23, 2020
4,660
NW LA
I was hoping to keep it at 100 bucks or no more than 125.
Thanks




Oh wow. Cool. Thanks man. I will check it out.

Check out all of the Demon FX pedals. They, have quite a few OD's that are awesome. You can find their most recent offerings at www.AliExpress.com where they cost about 60% of Amazon's price but you have to wait 2 or 3 weeks for it. I initially ordered my last pedal through AliExpress because it was only $43(+ tax & shipping made it $56) vs $68 on Amazon. Then I cancelled it on AE and bought it on Amazon. For $15 more. and no wait time. It literally came overnight from the music store in Texas that I ordered it from.

I just got their Dual Boost pedal, also(this is the pedal I was referring to above). I have that along with:

Dual Gun
Dual Boost
Tube Screamer
At-DS
King of Drive
Steel String Supreme
Mosky Golden Horse
Maybe 1 more



You can see their entire selection at


They have an inexpensive Klon Centaur clone, Precision Drive, King Spark, Jan Ray, 2 Tube Screamers, a new Bluesbreaker clone that's not on the website yet, and a bunch of others.

Here's the Bluesbreaker clone at AliExpress

Screenshot_20220702-013112_AliExpress.jpg


I just got the Dual Boost, which has their version of the EP Booster(pre amp side of the EP3 echoplex) and Fortin 33 booster pedal in a single enclosure. It's an incredible pedal.

That Fortin 33 is something else. And the EP Booster sounds just like my amp, only louder. I didn't expect to like it this much. In fact, I was worried I wouldn't use it but it's already become my favorite pedal as of late.

When I ordered it, the choice was between this Dual Boost and the Mosky Audio "TW", which is their version of the Wampler 'Triple Wreck'. I was needing a distortion pedal so the TW would've done fine. But the Fortin is said to be able to send any decent amo to that high gain territory so I figured id give it a shot. Boy does it work! Lol

Screenshot_20220626-013630_Amazon Shopping.jpg
 
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Wound_Up

You can call me Duane 😁
Jan 23, 2020
4,660
NW LA
Ah well …. this works pretty good…. may not be what your looking for…



Lol I like that pedal style so much I bought another one almost just like it 🤣

I really like the larger knobs. Better control and higher resolution for that control. You can really dial it in exactly where you want it with large knobs. The larger they are, the more resolution you have in your adjustment.

That Dual Boost pedal does clean boost extremely well. Both sides do, in fact.
 

touch of gray

Strat-Talker
Jul 10, 2022
302
Bismarck, ND
Hi folks.

I have a reverend amp that is 60 watts which you can turn down to 20 watts.
I need an overdrive to push the amp into higher gain. One that doesn't involve changing the tone of that's possible?
I'm thinking maybe a klon clone or? Any recommendations?
thanks.
I recently bought the Zeus Overdrive klon clone by TC Electronic.I have never played a real Klon, but I am very happy with it. It’s pretty faithful to the original circuit; germanium diodes, built-in buffer, and dual concentric tone control. Thankfully they have not remained faithful to the ridiculous prices, only 70 USD.
 

touch of gray

Strat-Talker
Jul 10, 2022
302
Bismarck, ND
Agree! Also, I don’t consider them to be transparent at all. OP asked for a transparent OD.
You have to play one to get a feel for the overall tone possibilités and playing dynamics. I use it like a boost or eq control, and it is excellent stacking with other pedals. For me it was was worth taking a risk on $70 to find out. The Nobels OD-1 would be a great alternative as well.
 

touch of gray

Strat-Talker
Jul 10, 2022
302
Bismarck, ND
If enough people say something…

This is not to say that the pedal and its clones aren’t amazing; I’ve never played one. But somewhere along the way, the word of mouth push did better than what any marketing campaign could dream to do.

If I had a friend named Stevie Ray Vaughan who invited me to hear him play, and afterward told me “yea man…that tone? That’s the TS9. You need one!”, trust me, I’d be running to the store for the pedal.
How do you know he wouldn’t be rocking a Klon if he had lived longer? The TS-9 was pretty much it for low gain overdrives in the eighties, with the RAT being the high gain pedal of choice. Now there are a thousand pedals to choose from. But those are still great options today.
 


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