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Boss SUPER OverDrive SD-1 Pedal

 
The Boss SUPER OverDrive SD-1 gives you the warm, smooth distortion of an overdriven tube amp without blurring the nuances of your picking technique. The unique symmetric drive circuit delivers a more rich, authentic-sounding overdrive effect. Here's an overdrive pedal that has Level, Drive, and Tone controls that make it easy to go from mild to hard, or even use the...


Price: $20 to $82 at 17 stores
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Great in front of a tube amp featured

Ease Of Use Very simple,,,,I use very little drive, set the tone at zero, and the level quite high.......just like Zakk Wylde and many others did/do with this pedal. I only kick it on when I want a violin like, nice sustaining lead sound with a little more hair than just what the amp is giving. I use this pedal in front of a Soldano SLO100, which I keep the gain on the OD channel to around 6 or 7 for my dirty sound, and then kick on this pedal for most solos and leads. This pedal is very transparent, and gives the extra boost and sustain I like for leads, but not needed for rhythm/riffs. Sure, the SLO has enough gain on tap for this on its own, but I really don't like all of that amp gain for playing the rhythms and riffs and the rest of the song.....just for some solos....for that violin like , bleeding lead sound.


Sound Takes my amp into a blissfull, violin like, organic lead tone,,,,,,just perfect to me. Retains the touch response and perfect sensitivity that the Soldano already has, and just adds to it. Like they were made to work together. I had this same experience with several Marshall tube amps using this pedal,,,worked great with them too.


Reliability It's a Boss.


Customer Support No experience dealing with them.


Liked about it Everything above. I've tried other pedals, but keep coming back to this one as keeping my SLO tone as unaltered as possible. Just the tried and true method of using an overdrive pedal to push a tube amp into lead guitar bliss,,,,as has been done by so many throughout history. I like the sound better than just maxing the gain on the Soldano for leads.


Didn't like Over the last decade, pedals have come and gone, but this one always prevails for what I use it for. No dislikes.


Overall satisfaction:
 
5.0

By lynchfan6
Jul 28, 2011
 
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Great overdrive pedal. featured

Ease Of Use It doesn't get much easier than the three knobs on the SD-1. Level, tone and drive. Dial in your output level and gain, then adjust the tone to taste. Easy as 1-2-3.



Sound I've always considered the SD-1 to be Boss' take on the Ibanez TS9, and it is definitely comparable. As a standalone distortion pedal, this probably isn't going to fit the bill, at least not for me. It is great as boost pedal, something to juice your amp into higher saturation.

Really, there are few more awesome sounds than a Marshall tube amp dialed in to a medium overdrive, then boosted with an SD-1 or TS9.

If I were to compare the TS9 to the SD-1, I'd say they're very close in tone and function but the SD-1 has a slightly "fuzzier" sound to it, where the TS9 is slightly smoother. This may be due to the differences in the overdrive circuit. The SD-1 uses asymmetric clipping and the TS9 uses symmetric clipping to generate overdrive. Other than sounding complicated it's basically the difference in the sound between the two.

One thing to be aware of is, like some of the Ibanez TS9's, the Boss SD-1 has been made with different chips and components over the years. A lot of people swear by the older Japanese versions of it and dislike the newer Taiwan made units. Really though, the differences are very subtle.

These units are very easily modded as well, and there are numerous places that can tweak an SD-1 to sound just the way you want it. A lot of the mods are fully documented online, and are relatively easy and cheap.


Reliability It is a Boss pedal, I have Boss pedals that shouldn't even work they're that beat up, yet they never fail.


Customer Support I have never needed them.


Liked about it It's an alternative to the TS-9 with a slightly different sound. They can sound quite good in numerous applications. Can be had quite cheaply on the used market and are easy to mod.


Didn't like I found the SD-1 to have a slightly fuzzier sound to it, and preferred the TS9. Not really a dislike I know, but it's the only thing I can think of to say that is negative. It's a great pedal nonetheless, just not perfect for me.


Overall satisfaction:
 
3.0

By blackspy
May 21, 2010
 
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Great boost/od pedal

Ease Of Use This pedal only has 3 knobs, similar to the tube screamer. It is very easy to find workable tone.


Sound I use Ibanez rg1570 with Duncan blackouts and Ibanez J-Custom with Duncan SH12 (soon be switching to DiMarzio evo2). The amp is Blackstar ht5.
The Blackstar ht5, by itself does not produce enough gain for modern metal sound. It is great for anything else though. A few months ago I bought a Tube Screamer DX as booster and very happy with the resulting sound. However, I read in some forums that SD-1 is more open sounding with less mid-hump, plus they are very cheap.. I immediately found a used SD-1, for a third the price of my Tube Screamer. I always turn my Tube Screamer tone knob to 10, Because this will give me more crunch, tight bottom, and cut the mix better.

OK, so how do they compare?

TS9 attack is more woody and syrupy.. And when you sustain a note, the mid range is very prominent in a pleasant way.. The chords have more weight to them, as a result the sound is more upfront.. Unfortunately the TS9 has potential to become a little undefined for fast riffing, especially when you play with low tuning..
SD1 pick attack is more to the point, without chunky middy attack of the TS9. This pedal is best described as a TS9 with more effective tone control. The sound is brighter, and there is less bass cut. To match my TS9 with tone control full open, I have to put the sd1 tone on 3 o clock (and this pedal goes to 6 instead of 5 o clock like the ts).. For fast metal riffing this pedal is more precise, with brighter attack on the palm mute. However, playing solo on the SD1 is not as inspiring as the TS9, because there is less mid, there also less harmonics, and less bloom to the note.. Its good, but not as good as the TS9.

I bought the SD1 thinking if it is good enough i would sell the TS9 and buy some pickups, but in the end I keep both, because they both sound great for their own use.

If you are a player emphasizing on high gain metal rhythm, I'd recommend the SD-1, especially if you have a middy or very loose/dark amp.. Like the mesa recto, for example..

If you play a lot of leads I'd recommend the TS9..

As a stand alone overdrive, the SD-1 has a bit more gain, and sound more realistic/smoother.. With the TS9, you can hear the mid bump really well and the transistor harshness is more noticeable..


Reliability I have/had several boss pedals, and while not all of them sound great, they are very sturdy and built like a mini tank.. The same can be said about the Tube Screamer though..


Customer Support Never deal with them..


Liked about it 1. More tightness/definition for fast metal rhythm
2. Has a little more gain over the Tube Screamer
3. Overdrive sound much better than TS9


Didn't like 1. Lead tone is less juicy than the TS9
2. It's yellow


Overall satisfaction:
 
4.0

By bowie8889
Feb 04, 2012
 
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Decent Overdrive--better with modifications

Ease Of Use Well, as most pedals go--Boss keeps it simple with 3 knobs and an on-off footswitch.


Sound Decent overdrive. I ran this from an Ibanez RG-570 with Evolution pickups into a Carvin Legacy. It's a little on the fizzle side like most other Boss distortion and overdrive pedals. I bought this with the intention of modifying with a new opamp IC and a few other changes in capacitors and resistors to bring it closer to a Tube Screamer and the creamier overdrive.


Reliability I firmly believe that all BOSS pedals could survive a nuclear holocaust! They are built out of metal and are tough. The knobs are plastic, but always last--unless you throw it to the ground.


Customer Support Never had to use them.


Liked about it The price on these has always been decent. The SD-1 is still wallet-friendly even with the recent price hike.
The sound is exceptional for a $40.00 overdrive pedal. Easy to modify.


Didn't like It's a little on the fizzle side of overdrive. I like my overdrives to be creamy and smooth, not slightly harsh and fizzy.


Overall satisfaction:
 
4.0

By AlaskaBat
Feb 15, 2011
 
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Low cost unbeatable overdrive

Ease Of Use One of my favorite pedals, in fact I own two, an early '80s MIJ unit and a MIT that I bought used and then sent out to OnFloor Audio for mods. Boss SD-1 pedals are THE OD to use for pushing a Marshall. There is something about that combination that just works. Tube screamers are great with Fenders and the SD-1 is great with a Marshall. My MIJ is pure magic in front of a Plexi and my OFA modded version is more aggressive but at the same time more open sounding and has more bottom thump. Most of the time I run mine with it's volume up 75-100%, tone set at noon the the drive at zero or just a hair above. That's the perfect setting for pushing a just breaking up amp into full out scream. It helps you maintain the character of the amp without coloring the tone too much.


Sound I've used my SD-1s with a '93 1959SLP re-issue (which was as good as it gets), my 2266VM half stack, a '70s SF VibroChamp, a Sound City L120 half stack and in front of my Digitech ValveFX for more grind. It works best with the Marshalls. The Fender seemed to prefer my Route 66 which is a Tube Screamer clone. Aside for the symmetric/assymeteric differences between the two I think it's because the Marshalls already have a lot of mids and the Fender is more mid scooped. Tube Screamers have more mid hump than the SD-1.


Reliability Built like a tank, never a problem.


Customer Support Never needed it.


Liked about it Everything. It's a low cost pedal that sounds great right out of the box and is a perfect platform for mods that can give you a boutique OD for a fraction of the price of others.


Didn't like No complaints.


Overall satisfaction:
 
4.5

By Riffraff
Jan 01, 2011
 
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Good enough for Jason Becker...well worth the money!

Ease Of Use Three knobs to dial in your tone, level and drive.
Remember this is meant to be used as a boost and not a distortion pedal.


Sound This is a "play what ya got" kinda pedal. Doesn't matter what you play, this pedal can only help you.

You can use any guitar and amp combo you want. Add this pedal and it can only help.
Having said that, I prefer this pedal with an all tube amp. but that is just me.

Looking for a pedal to take your solo to the next level? Look no further.
When it is time to shine you are just a foot tap away from "Showtime"

If you are not sure what "your" tone is, buy this pedal and find it!
Like I said, Jason Becker used this pedal (check my pic close, yeah those are his pedals!)on most of his recordings....how good is this pedal? Good enough!

I can't say enough good things about this pedal, when you use it in the manner it was intended...it is perfect.
We should all be using this little yellow fellow.

Punkin 010.JPG



Reliability I have never had an issue.
I would take my Ibanez, JCM800 or JCM900 head and this pedal in to combat and walk out as the champion!


Customer Support I have never had to use Customer Support with any Boss product...that should tell you just how good they are.


Liked about it The color! It is yellow, HELLO!
The tone. Classic boost with amazing tone.
All I need to do is tap my foot and this pedal lets me go above and beyond when it is solo time.
It is so easy to use....we should all have one of these in our arsenal for sure.


Didn't like I don't have anything bad to say...I love this pedal!


Overall satisfaction:
 
5.0

By milkywayslipnsli
Aug 23, 2010
 
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Boss SD-1

Ease Of Use It's very easy to get a usable tone out of it, i mainly use it as a boost pedal and leave it on all the time.


Sound I use the boss SD-1 coupled with my Ibanez TS-9 to overdrive my amps to get a metal tone. The pedal itself i would say is almost more towards a distortion, really adds a lot of gain to an amp. It isn't something you would want to run by itself, unless of course you wanted a blues tone or just something extra on a clean channel.


Reliability Very sturdy as are all boss products.


Customer Support No i have not


Liked about it The ability for it to take my amps and turn them into high gain amps.


Didn't like nothing to dislike, it does what i need it to do perfectly fine.


Overall satisfaction:
 
5.0

By lateralus819
Nov 16, 2009
 
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Better things out there for the money

Ease Of Use Easy to use? Its a BOSS, so of course its easy to use. The device is simple and effective, with tone, volume, and gain knobs to adjust the sound you want.


Sound Honestly, was a bit weak. Sounded kind of brittle where other distortion pedals had a nice full chunky sound. I honestly couldn't think of a single use where this pedal would excel over another, but it was a "decent" sound.


Reliability Its a BOSS. I could drive over it with a mac truck and it would still work.


Customer Support Never needed ;)


Liked about it Easy to use, decent sound, not over the top expensive. Good for beginners


Didn't like Price doesn't match the sound... The DS-1 is a similar style pedal with a much better sound, but that is purely subjective. On a quality point, its tough to do any better without charging 3 times the cost ;)


Overall satisfaction:
 
3.5

By linuxpenguin
Jan 17, 2011
 
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