Handcrafted effect pedals are increasing in popularity. Boutique pedal brands are creating more effects pedals that feature great quality, durability, and affordable price points.
Musicians are starting to appreciate boutique pedal brands in the past few years as they prove to be more innovative in terms of engineering and design while being able to retain some of the trademark features of pedal effects. Boutique pedal brands welcome users to more options in stompbox effects.
In this article, we look at the boutique overdrive pedal offerings from some of the best and most reliable boutique pedal companies today!
Click here to read our Stone Groove 12AX7 review.
This is one of the bestsellers of boutique pedal brand, Masterbuilt. It creates the perfect tone for distortion. This overdrive boasts killer tone, massive boost, and amazing tube distortion.
Users can easily adjust from loud rock roaring thunder that fills the room to a mild bluesy gain. Top-quality oversized components promises creamy, warm overdriven tube tone that will make microphonics and a hum totally nonexistent.
The Stone Groove 12AX7 Boutique Overdrive features gain and volume knobs as well as switch that facilitates a warm and balanced 12AX7 operation.
Other features include:
- Brith blue and red LED indicators for engage and tube heater
- Masterbuilt has been a consistently premium brand in the boutique pedal manufacturing
- Copper tube shiled and jumbo stove top knobs
- Cleat high gain with its Groove Tube Gold Series GT-ECC83S
Check out our Biyang OD-8 review.
It features three modes namely Normal, Bright, and Warm. Biyang also provides 2 additional overdrive chips that users can easily change in the pedal this ensuring a myriad of tonal possibilities.
- True bypass feature
- Knobs including volume, tone, and drive controls
- Made up of super solid metal casing
- Makes use of 9V battery or standard Boss-style adapter
Check out our MAD-HW-SBOD review.
This unique boutique pedal boasts a four-knob pedal engineered to overdrive already distorted amplifiers. In addition, the MAD-HW-SBOD delivers light overdrive or soft distortions on clean sounds.
One of the special features unique to this pedal is its adjustable feel and amazing dynamics with its very own Texture and Z knobs.
The Z is essentially a control feature that generates an adjustable load to the guitar connected to the SBOID input. A standard electric guitar with pickups utilizing this control can easily adjust to the upper resonant peaks of the pickups. The Z knob also influences the tapering of volume control on the guitar. It is also left with the task of cleaning up the tone while using the guitar knobs. The Texture control allows the changing and timing of circuits that distort and adjust overall EQ.
- Volume control: setting the output volume of the effect
- Distort control: controls distortion or overdrive effect
- Z control: it helps in creating adjustable load to the connected instrument from the SBOD input.
- Texture control: aside from changing timing of circuits that distort overall EQ, this knob is also responsible for adjusting midrange in combination with adjustment of compression too. Italso gives a more saturated effect on the CCW whilst giving slight treble boost with less compression
Take a look at our XTS Imperial Overdrive review.
The Lower Gas Gain Nashville Overdrive pedal promises to breathe in life yet again to your sound. Users will definitely stand out when they make the right decision of including this in their pedal board.
This effects pedal is more expensive than the other overdrive pedals in this list. But with all its features and functions, it is certainly worth every penny. XTS engineered the Imperial to optimize the low gain to higher-mid gain tones.
This overdrive pedal was very much inspired by the great number of clients from Nashville. The Nashville Overdrive pedal boasts the same sound they loved through the years from XTS, but with extended flexibility and usefulness.
- Optimized controls deliver wide sweet spots for easy manipulation and dial in
- Color knob enables users to adjust the EQ thus expect bigger variation in response without having to get painfully bright or overly dark
- Gain knob taper makes it easy to adjust with simple touches of grit to tine
- Full and high bass response ensures clean character without being harsh
- Dyn switch up position will deliver that classic Nashville overdrive whilst down position creates sounds that are clear and transparent at the same time.
Take a look at our Effectrode Tube-Drive review.
The Effectrode Tube-Drive Overdrive pedal ensures prime-quality tone packaged in a compact and sturd, no-fuss effects operation. It is a beauty to behold, as this overdrive palette has the power to create a wide range of tones from classic rock distortion to rich and bodied blues.
- Three dual triode tubes fully functional at 300VDC and is claimed to produce symmetrical signal slipping across 6 cascaded gain stages.
- All Tube gain circuitry makes the Tube Drive the only pedal that has a complete tube guitar amp within. It is a 100% analogue, class-A overdrive pedal
- Tube swapping enables to improve the tone and gain characteristics. It is a high-gain distortion beats, boost pedal, or mellow boost driver too!
- The Bax-Stack active tube control is an active drive that facilitates excellent tone control. This feature is a treble boost carrying zero insertion loss. Tone range is guaranteed to be optimized working over important frequencies that are needed for essential to mellow jazz tones to some serious jazz crunches.
Click here to read our Jubilee Silver Overdrive review.
The Jubilee Silver Overdrive pedal is definitely a standout boutique effects pedal worth buying. This pedal was originally inspired by Marshall’s Silver Jubilee Amp.
It does a great good job of capturing a wide range of gain whilst offering a vast array of Marshall-esque tones.
- Three-band EQ and Drive control
- Sensitive EQ features meaning more dialing in by feel than by ear
- Offers wide range of Marshall tones that you can find in a single stompbox
If you are looking for something for the low end, take a look at our bass overdrive pedal recommendations.