Below is a YouTube demonstration video using various guitars and the Red Scorpion 2 (Mega Distortion) by Aleks K Production, a Canadian pedal (and now guitar) manufacturer that goes over and above in quality and sound production in its second version of the pedal.
The above is to demo the use of different guitars and Gain levels. The next video demos the various EQ (Low, Mid, High) settings, as well as the difference in the Tone switch:
This distortion is both impressive and unique in its sound, offering up some thick, grainy drive that actually remains smooth the more you turn it up until you get a saturated milkshake of tones. The three EQ knobs (Low, Mid, High) produce a wide array of tonal possibilities, although I share only a few on the demo video. The tone knobs are highly responsive so that you can achieve very different results with varying amounts of Gain. There’s also a TONE switch that produces a sharper effect when up or more middle and smoothness when flipped down (great for melodic solos).
First, you get a heaping load of distortion to varying degrees, yet every note is clean and clear. Even with the Gain turned all the way down (off) you get a good amount of edgy distortion. One can say that the Red Scorpion 2 produces its own unique Brown Sound as it definitely does not sound like a hive full of bees… nor do you get that shrill or piercing sound from this pedal. As well, the tone rolls off exceptionally well when using the guitar volume knob, and without losing too much volume in the process – this allows you to still have some nice crunch for rhythm followed by a thicker saturation for lead. What is most noticeable is how the notes sing out when playing lead, along with a good dose of sustain. All this is what a person wants from a quality high-gain amp, yet it’s achievable with a clean amp and the Red Scorpion 2. As impressive, this is a very quiet pedal, although no noise gate is part of the circuit – simply amazing how you can crank up the Gain and barely hear any artifacts or hum.
EASE OF USE
This pedal is easy to use, although tweaking of the knobs and Tone switch produces a wide range of possibilities ideal for classic rock and certainly when delving into various Metal genres. For example, too much Low with too much Gain can sound very bottom heavy and in your face, which is what a person may want, whereas easing off on the Low produces a very different effect akin to a sweet sounding chainsaw cutting through butter (I demonstrate this in the video). Both the Mid and High knobs are as responsive, although the tone remains very creamy even when the Highs are turned up a lot. The Tone switch can vary the effect, from improving crispness (when up) versus adding in some mids and smoothness (when flipped down); the former tends to work best with heavy rhythms, whereas the latter tends to work best with lead – although this all depends on the EQ of where you set the Low, Mid and High knob settings.
RELIABILITY & DURABILITY
Aleks K Production takes great pride in its production quality. This goes beyond the all steel housing, as well as one of the toughest and most professional paint jobs around, or the black aluminum knobs with TWO set screws. Every part of the Red Scorpion 2 is manufactured with the highest standards, including a Japanese made switch, power jacks from Kobiconn (USA), in/out jacks from Switchcraft (USA) and an Alpha footswitch.
As impressive is the Red Scorpion 2’s guts. The Alpha potentiometers have dust covers, the IC Chip is from Texas Instruments (and you get an extra one in case you mess up the power supply and fry the chip), the transistors and diodes are from Fairchild Semiconductors (USA), the capacitors from Kemet (USA) and Wima (Germany), and the military-use resistors from Vishay/Dale. As well, all components are RoHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances) certified. Some of this likely doesn’t mean much to most readers, but when a company details every part used, including the tinned oxygen free copper wires and the lead free silver solder (for better conductivity), you know you are buying a quality pedal with no detail withheld. This not only makes the pedal reliable in regard to its outer construction, but the electronics are designed and built to last a lifetime.