The Best Overdrive Pedals On The Market - 2021
The overdrive pedal is one of the most popular effects in the guitaring world. The purpose of the design is to give you the sound of a tube amp being overdriven. You can use the overdrive for a warm clean sound, or to give you extra gain for your distortion. There are many types available so the first thing you'll want to do is figure out what kind of sound you want. Overdrive pedals are commonly used to produce a warm, tube-like distortion. Traditionally, tube amps were used to get this sound. However, because overdrive pedals use transistors rather than tubes, they are less susceptible to the same inconsistencies.
What Purpose Do They Serve?
Overdrive pedals were created for the sole purpose of bringing tubes to the brink of breakup. They can add a gritty edge to your clean tone, and they're also great for making over-the-top, harmonically rich distortion tones. The overdrive effect is a very capable one. From grunge to crunch, overdrive is used across many genres.
Overdrive occupies a special place in the world of guitarists. Not an effect you'd buy for it's massive tone changing properties or drastic sound alterations. Instead the traditional overdrive pedal adds color to your existing sound. Like a driven tube amp, the overdrive pedals purpose is to add character to your sound.
Some overdrive pedals can function as a "clean boost" for added volume or gain during solos. They have generally high headroom, low to mid gain and a frequency response that helps tighten up the sound of higher gain amplifiers. Many modern high gain sounds are achieved by using an overdrive pedal in front of a high gain amp.
When looking for a new overdrive pedal, you will probably have noticed that there are hundreds of different models to choose from. What makes one overdrive different from another? This is where the details come in. From the circuits used within, to the pedal’s main objective, there are tons of small variables that have an effect on the tone the player hears.
Why Add An Overdrive Pedal To Your Setup?
Many seasoned veteran guitarists would agree that an overdrive pedal is essential on any pedalboard. Whether you're a blues player, jazz guitarist or a metalhead. An overdrive is capable of pushing front end, adding sustain to a killer solo or just give you that edge when you need it.
It's common for overdrive pedals to have 3 control knobs, gain, volume and equalization, also known as level.
Overdrives generally increase the input signal volume. It can push a tube amp into a state of saturation. Therefore pushing the volume high and gain low will give you the best possible level of saturation from your amp.
Finding the right overdrive pedal for you is a difficult task. Thankfully you're not alone, our review and recommendations should help. So we've found a selection of the best overdrive pedals on the market. Hopefully you'll be able to use this list to narrow down and decide which one is right for you.