Best Distortion Pedals: Five of our favourites

22nd Sep 2010 | 14:40

Best Distortion Pedals: Five of our favourites
Radial Bones London Distortion

Distortion is usually one of the first effects guitarists add to their arsenal, as a good distortion pedal can open up tones that are time-consuming to set up or impossible to achieve on your amp. Although the terms distortion and overdrive can and are often used synonymously, it's best to think of distortion as a more extreme effect. Distortion pedals usually offer more gain than overdrive pedals, so they're perfect for metal and hard rock.

Radial Bones London Distortion

We said: “The Bones series is Radial’s solid-state version of the Tonebone valve-driven pedals. The London Distortion’s ‘British Plexi’ drive sound is totally flexible for different styles. It has a dual band EQ section and two level controls to provide a footswitchable volume boost.”

Check out our Guitar Buying Guide for more gear advice.

Best Distortion Pedals: Five of our favourites
Seymour Duncan Twin Tube Mayhem

Distortion is usually one of the first effects guitarists add to their arsenal, as a good distortion pedal can open up tones that are time-consuming to set up or impossible to achieve on your amp. Although the terms distortion and overdrive can and are often used synonymously, it's best to think of distortion as a more extreme effect. Distortion pedals usually offer more gain than overdrive pedals, so they're perfect for metal and hard rock.

Seymour Duncan Twin Tube Mayhem

We said: “This valve-driven beast has tons of options and they’re all useful for getting a variety of metal tones. As well as having gain by the bucket load, there’s a switchable 4/8dB boost and a mid shift control. As the name suggests it’s brilliant if you want a bit of high-gain, er, mayhem.”

Check out our Guitar Buying Guide section for more gear advice.

Best Distortion Pedals: Five of our favourites
ProTone Skumstortion

Distortion is usually one of the first effects guitarists add to their arsenal, as a good distortion pedal can open up tones that are time-consuming to set up or impossible to achieve on your amp. Although the terms distortion and overdrive can and are often used synonymously, it's best to think of distortion as a more extreme effect. Distortion pedals usually offer more gain than overdrive pedals, so they're perfect for metal and hard rock.

ProTone Skumstortion

We said: “Set the drive at two thirds and you get a britlle, biting attack that’s totally satisfying for old-school metal, giving good note articulation and enough low end to shake the ceiling. But if you crank the Drive to its max the Skumstortion doesn’t get quite as crazy as its livery suggests.”

Check out our Guitar Buying Guide section for more gear advice.

Best Distortion Pedals: Five of our favourites
Roger Mayer Metalloid

Distortion is usually one of the first effects guitarists add to their arsenal, as a good distortion pedal can open up tones that are time-consuming to set up or impossible to achieve on your amp. Although the terms distortion and overdrive can and are often used synonymously, it's best to think of distortion as a more extreme effect. Distortion pedals usually offer more gain than overdrive pedals, so they're perfect for metal and hard rock.

Roger Mayer Metalloid

We said: “This innovative pedal’s dual-band parallel distortion gives you individual control over high and low frequencies. It’s dead simple in use, with dedicated Gain and EQ for each band allowing unprecedented fine-tuning. There are more aggressive pedals, but the Metalloid is pure old-school quality.”

Check out our Guitar Buying Guide section for more gear advice.

Best Distortion Pedals: Five of our favourites
MXR Fullbore Metal

Distortion is usually one of the first effects guitarists add to their arsenal, as a good distortion pedal can open up tones that are time-consuming to set up or impossible to achieve on your amp. Although the terms distortion and overdrive can and are often used synonymously, it's best to think of distortion as a more extreme effect. Distortion pedals usually offer more gain than overdrive pedals, so they're perfect for metal and hard rock.

MXR Fullbore Metal

We said: “The Fullbore’s fat and full at low gain, while pushing the dial makes it turn seriously nasty and makes its rivals seem a little polite by comparison. Tonally, it’s your dream ticket for modern metal, consolidated by its brilliant trimmings, including a scoop and an optional noise gate.”

Check out our Guitar Buying Guide section for more gear advice.

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