21 Great Effects Pedals for Electric Guitar

21 Great Effects Pedals for Electric Guitar

Check out this video of 21 great effects pedals you need to check out.  There are so many great pedals on the market and finding the hidden gems can be hard. With this in mind I’ve put together a list of pedals I really liked testing in this video below.

Pedals in order of appearance:

Maxon Overdrive Pro OD-820
Greenchild Tribus Drive (Distortion Mode)
Anarchy Audio BaaBzz Fuzz
Tone City Wild Fire Distortion
Maxon Overdrive Extreme OD808X
VFE The Ice Scream Overdrive (Mint Edition)
Toy Room Guitar FX handwired Big Muff Clone
Toy Room Guitar FX Cherub Fuzz/Distortion
Chellee Odie Overdrive
Dr. J Shadow Echo & Dr. J Arsenal Distortion
Joyo Digital Delay & Dr. J Green Crystal Overdrive
Tone City Bad Horse Overdrive (Klon-Style)
VFE The Scream Overdrive
Tone City Tape Machine Analog Delay & Tone City Sweet Cream Overdrive.
Joyo Husky Drive
VFE Merman Transparent Overdrive Pedal
Joyo Blue Rain Overdrive
Joyo Vintage Phaser
VFE Mini Mu
Tone City Mandragora Overdrive
Yamaha OD-10MII Overdrive

These are all great sounding effects pedals for their particular tone.  Please let me know what you think by leaving comments below.

Effects Pedals

Guitar Effects I Use Live by INTHEBLUES

Guitar Effects I Use Live by INTHEBLUES

Here’s a rundown video on all the pedals I am currently using live.  I have been using these now for several gigs and I feel really settled on my tone and sound especially with the Les Paul and 335 electric guitars.  This video features some live playing tones as well as a tone test of each pedal and how I use them together.

My pedalboard consists of the following pedals

PoB Zentastik Overdrive
Maxon OD808 Overdrive Pedal
Tone City Tape Machine Analog Delay
MOEN Shaky Jimi Vibe
ENO Micro PT-21 Guitar Tuner Pedal Tuner
Dunlop GCB95F Crybaby Classic Wah

Tone City Mandragora Overdrive Pedal Review

Tone City Mandragora Overdrive Pedal Review

The Tone City Mandragora is based off the killer tones of the Lovepedal Kalamazoo overdrive pedal.  What I love about the Mandragora is it’s extremely usable and sits somewhere between the Tone City Bad Horse and the Tone City Wild Fire in terms of gain.  This is an overdrive pedal to be sure, but the great thing about it is you can really dial in some thick tones with loads of sustain and vibe.  If you’re a fan of amp-like overdrive this will hit the right spots tonally.  I’ve tried this with a number of guitars now both at home and live and it’s one of my favorites from the Tone City Range.

The video below shows how the Tone City Mandragora will sound stacked with the Sweet Cream Overdrive by the same company.

The Mandragoa features 4 simple controls:

  • Gain – Controls the amount of drive in the signal
  • Tone – Controls the overall EQ of high end on the tone
  • Pre – (Presence) Controls the clarity control (Glass control) of the tone.
  • Volume – Controls how loud you want to be

Much like the bad horse pedal, this can be used to push an amp over the edge of breakup or also on a clean tone.  Another advantage to it is the Mandragora works great on an already off-clean amp, which is perfect for blues and classic rock.

Being that the Tone City pedals are so small there’s no internal battery compartment so you’ll need to run them on a Visual Sound/Boss style 9V power supply.

(5 / 5)

The Tone City Mandragora is another home run for the price.  I used it live recently and it was sustain heaven.  The pedals are built extremely well and sound as good as the pedals they are based on.   Check out Tone City Pedals online.  I always base my reviews on build quality, price, and tone in perspective to where it sits in the market against other brands and pedals I’ve played.  For the money these are the best inexpensive pedal on the market I’ve ever tried.

Tone City Mandragora Pedal


Tone City Bad Horse Overdrive Pedal Review

Tone City Bad Horse Overdrive Pedal Review

The Tone City Bad Horse Overdrive pedal is a Klon clone that captures the authentic tones the Klon KTR is known for.  I am lucky enough to own a Klon KTR (the Red Klon) and today I did a test between the Klon and the Tone City Bad Horse and there was so little difference between them that if you had your eyes shut, you couldn’t tell the difference between them.  The only difference would be how it feels on your wallet.

The Tone City Bad Horse works best on a slightly dirty tone or for pushing a clean tube amp over the edge of breakup.  The Bad horse won’t sound as smooth as a regular Tubescreamer when it’s isolated but that’s not the point.  This is one of those pedals that boosts some hairy frequencies to make it stick out in the mix.  Much like the Klon the Bad Horse has a nice air about the top end which makes it perfect for boosting your amp tone (or stacked pedal tone) without losing a lot of clarity like a saturated Tubescreamer can.

This pedal is priced at $69.00 USD and will compete (or slaughter) other pedals around the price on the market.  Not only is this built extremely tough and could withstand a fall or being stepped on it’s a nicer looking and nice sounding pedal than the EHX Soul Food which has to have some of the worst reliability issues I’ve seen in years.

If you’re interested in getting a Klon voiced pedal this would be my choice for the price, there’s nothing that comes close to it.  Being that it only has 3 controls it’s also easier to use than the VFE Merman which sounds great but has more options – even more than the original Klon.

The pots feel extremely sturdy, it runs on 9v DC only, it’s small, compact, and extremely usable.

(5 / 5)

5/5.  Great price, great tone, great look and extremely well made for the price.  Check out another Tone City Bad Horse Review here.

Tone City Bad Horse Overdrive Pedal

Toyroom Guitar Effects – Norfleet Fuzz/Distortion Pedal Review

Toyroom Guitar Effects – Norfleet Fuzz/Distortion Pedal Review

The Toyroom Guitar Effects company is based in Sydney, Australia.  They make exceptional quality, hand-wired, custom painted pedals without the unusually high price tag that would go along with them (think Landgraff for example).  I was lucky enough to try four of the new Toyroom Guitar Effects pedals and I can vouch for their quality, as well as their simplicity – Tim at Toyroom has done a great job.

This particular Norfleet pedal is a Fuzz/Distortion pedal which means it’s not as prominent in either a fuzz or distortion making it a bled of both.  It has some seriously raunchy tones and when you really crank it hard you can hear the fuzz overtones on the notes.

If you like fuzz with a modern twist and high gain, this would be a great choice.  If you’re looking for more of a Big Muff style fuzz, check out his Siamese Dream pedal.  That will definitely float your boat big time.

In this video demo below of the Toyroom Guitar Effects Norfleet Fuzz pedal I have it plugged into my Fender 68 Custom Deluxe Reverb amplifier and we’re letting the pedal do the work.  Check out the tone of this beast in the video below.

(4.3 / 5)

I am giving this pedal a solid 4.25/5.  Why an 8 you ask? Quality design, quality build, hand painted box, made with love.  It might not be the type of pedal I would usually go for in my live rig, but for those who are fans of fuzz pedals in general or more modern rocking tones of distortion/fuzz – I’m sure you’re going to love it.  It also has a price that can’t be beaten for what you’re paying for.   All in all this is a great effects pedal by Tim at Toyroom.  If this was an overdrive with the same

Toyroom Guitar Effects - Norfleet Fuzz/Distortion Pedal Review


Top 10 Overdrive Pedals of 2014

Top 10 Overdrive Pedals of 2014

Here’s my first half of 2014 top 10 overdrive pedals list.  I have based this purely on tone and not on build/construction quality otherwise the EHX Soul Food pedal probably wouldn’t have made the list (see this video).  This is not a top 10 of all time, it’s a top 10 of the pedals reviewed in the first half of 2014.

Thanks for checking out my video list.  All these overdrive pedals are awesome tonally and it’s up to you which one you like the best.  This is a guide to what I have tried and liked over the last 6 months or so.

Joyo Vintage Overdrive Pedal Review

Joyo Vintage Overdrive Pedal Review

The Joyo Vintage overdrive pedal has some serious online vibe going on.  Much like the Digitech Bad Monkey or the Behringer TO-800 these Joyo pedals live up to the hype and surpass the previous mentioned pedals in terms of build quality, tone and looks.

There’s a few things to love about the Vintage Overdrive.

  • The Price – It’s cheap RRP is around $40-50 depending on where you live in the World.
  • The Tone – This is the most important part and it delivers the goods.  This has to be a marriage made in heaven for anyone wanting a great lead or rhythm tone with enough drive to really kick your solos into the next gear.
  • Build Quality – True Bypass, High quality Construction, Pots and connectors feel great and it looks super-cool!

One of the great things about this pedal is it can cover a wide range of music styles.  If you’re into Blues, Country, Classic rock or original music definitely give this one a look as it sounds great on chord and lead solo parts.

(4.7 / 5) This pedal totally rocks.  What can I say about it other than it’s quite possibly the best, cheapest pedal on the market if you’re looking for the “green sound”. Check it out on Amazon!


Joyo Vintage Overdrive Pedal

SGT-SpurGuitarTech Boost Pedal

SGT-SpurGuitarTech Boost Pedal

The SGT-SpurGuitarTech Boost pedal is a killer volume boost pedal made in England, UK.  I was lucky enough to try and demo the first one of these online and I have nothing but great things to say about it.  If you love your amp tone and don’t want to mess with it and want either more volume or require a preamp boost pedal before another overdrive, this is a perfect solution.  You can also run it after another pedal for a volume and treble boost.

This pedal is really well made and features one “crackle okay” negative feedback volume/boost pot (based on 60’s style pots) on the front as well as an on off switch.  Crackle okay refers to the noise the pot makes when you turn it.  This is normal and is highly sought after by some players.

This particular pedal is handmade and I had a chance to open it as well and it’s extremely well made internally using great components.  The price is also great, so please check them out online if you’re digging it on the SpurGuitarTech Website.

I have this pedal on my pedal board after my Klon KTR which not only increases the sustain on the pedal but it also kicks up the volume as well.  Running this before the Klon would give me similar results only it wouldn’t be increasing the treble.  Running it after another pedal is where the treble boost kicks in.  Really, you can run it however you like and it’s all up to what works best for you, so experiment around and see how it goes.

SGT-SpurGuitarTech intheblues boost pedal

(4.8 / 5) – There’s no surprise to you that I really like this pedal.  The guys at SpurGuitarTech were nice enough to put my logo on it and it looks and sounds great.  This pedal is like the best parts of the BBE Boosta Grande mixed with the Gamut Boost Pedal.  If you want a volume boost you can also use as a treble boost, check into this one, as it delivers the goods.