Which Overdrive Pedal Should You Use?

How to make the right choice...

SonicState
Created By SonicState
On Mar 29, 2017

What level of gain are you looking for from the overdrive pedal?

How much control do you want over the tone?

How much do you want to spend?

Analog or digital?

Are you concerned about how much space it will take up on your board?

Ibanez TS808

Ibanez TS808

The Ibanez TS808 is THE classic overdrive pedal. Gain, volume and tone control is all you need with this pedal, which has been used in countless classic tracks.

Klon Centaur

Klon Centaur

The Klon Centaur is a fabled overdrive pedal which can now fetch four figure prices. But the man who made the original pedal has made a reissue run for much more affordable prices, and numerous companies have cloned the circuit for as little as $150.

Full-Drive 2 Mosfet

Full-Drive 2 Mosfet

An incredibly flexible Mosfet-based overdrive which sounds sublime. Good tonal range, from low gain right up to the higher end of the spectrum. Takes up a bit of space on the board, but there's always a trade-off to be made.

ZVEZ Box of Rock

ZVEZ Box of Rock

Small but powerful, the ZVEX Box of Rock is a modern classic. It works beautifully from low gain to medium, and adds character by bringing out all those harmonics and overtones you want when you ring out an open chord.

Wampler Ecstacy

Wampler Ecstacy

Part of a new generation of overdrives, offering classic tone to the modern player.

MXR Custom Badass Modified OD

MXR Custom Badass Modified OD

JHS Double Barrel

JHS Double Barrel

The JHS Double Barrel combines two circuits, one of which is their take on the classic TS808 circuit. Combining the two channels offers you a number of tonal possibilities, but this works best from low to medium gain.

EHX Soul Food

EHX Soul Food

Small, affordable, warm and transparent overdrive. It's the EHX take on the Klon Centaur, and it's a fraction of the price. It's also worth looking into the JHS mod of the EHX Soul Food.