It is completely overwhelming trying to choose the best guitar pedals for your electric guitar, especially if you are new to the art. In many ways, it is like taking a toddler to the candy store and asking that they pick only one!
There are way too many effect boxes out there with extraordinary features. We are here to help you make that choice, ensuring that you pick exactly what you’ve always wanted.
Best Guitar Pedals: Reviews
In this guide we take a closer look at six of the best guitar pedals on the market in the US, each offering a unique tone and features that can be categorized into different effects types.
With the right guitar pedal, you will have absolute control over the tones, effects, consistency, and sharpness of your electronic guitar.
Here are the best guitar pedals from our most exclusive list:
1. MXR M101 Phase 90 Guitar Effects Pedal
This is one effect pedal that has stood the test of time and has put many musicians in the spotlight. Whatever genre you decide to dabble in, whether it’s jazz, metal, classical or rock, the MXR has you covered.
One thing of note is the versatility of the device and how it syncs with instruments such as keys, guitar, bass, strings, and others. Its distinctive tone palette is a musician’s delight.
What differentiates the revolutionary MXR from other stompboxes? The pedal box delivers a shimmery velocity, along with a theatrical swoosh. Its analog tone is captivating and timeless.
It uses a 9-volt battery with the option of an ECB003 AC Adapter. Orange is its signatory color, which is easy to identify.
- Weight – 1 pound
- Dimensions – 5.5×2.5×4.5 inches
- Model number – M101
- Batteries – 9V battery required
- Voltage – 9
- Supports various instruments
- Unique analog tone
- Battery powered for convenience
- No warranty
2. Rowin Tiny Looper Electric Guitar Effect Pedal 10 Minutes of Looping Unlimited Overdubs
The famed looper provides you with high-quality audio with easy USB import and export functions to PC. The special features include 10 minutes of looping with excess overdubbing, the ability to redo and undo functions, and uses 48khz 24 bit.
The material is exceptionally sturdy and made from the highest quality zinc alloy. It is one of the easiest effects pedals to use and is well suited for beginners.
This is because there is only one key available to conduct all your adjustments.
For updates or upgrades of the system software, you have to go directly through the website for an official download.
The looper comes in various colors and designs and is quite efficient in creating uncompressed and great quality audio.
(Only Windows operating systems are supported by the device.)
- Weight – 4.7 ounces
- Dimensions – 2.95×1.42×1.02 inches
- Model number – LN-332
- Material – zinc alloy
- Number of strings – 7
- Guitar bridge system – Loop
- High-quality audio
- Easy music import and export functions
- Durable and sturdy
- Easy to use
- Comes in a variety of colors
- Only supports windows
3. Rowin Guitar Noise Killer Noise Gate Suppressor Effect Pedal LEF-319
The Noise Killer really lives up to its name, with the ability to suppress the input signals without harming the excellent quality of your signal. Noise reduction is adjustable from -70 to +10 db
The hard and soft modes provide solid and subtle effects based on noise reduction. The material of the device is quite sturdy and durable as it is made from the finest quality zinc alloy.
The true bypass creates an excellent transparent tone, while the LED indicator displays the working state. Its small size makes it easy to fit on any pedalboard. The Rowan guitar pedal is powered only by a DC 9V power supply.
- Weight – 8.1 ounces
- Dimensions – 3.74×1.77×1.89 inches
- Model number – LEF-319
- Size – mini
- Improves audio quality
- Sturdy and durable
- Saves space
- Comes in a variety of colors
- Not powered by batteries, which means there’s one more cable to deal with
4. Dunlop GCB95 Cry Baby Wah Guitar Effects Pedal
If you are a music lover and have listened to various rock, funk, and other music genres through the ages, you would understand why the Cry Baby is one of the most important guitar pedals ever made.
Since its creation, its effects could not be duplicated and it has maintained its original form to date. The legendary device, with only one control, has served for generations and is usually the first guitar pedal many professional guitarists go for.
Its unique “wah” sound is unmistakable and always stands out, giving your music a cool layer of complexity.
One thing you can certainly appreciate about the crybaby is that its timeless sounds in literally any music genre is traceable and melodic. The 1960s was the period where the crybaby made its debut and can be attributed to the musical assets of some of the greats, such as Jimi Hendrix, David Gilmour, Eric Clapton, and many others.
So how does the crybaby work? Tapping your foot on the pedal in a back and forth movement creates the Cry Baby tone.
You can make different tones with the crybaby by adjusting your foot movement. When you “toe-down” on the device, you get the treble, and when you “heel-down” you get the bass. As for the speed and frequency of effects, these largely depend on how you play.
When you place the pedal in a position, you will get a boost in a suitable frequency. The Cry Baby is manufactured with a heavy, die-cast material, which gives it sturdiness and years of reliability.
You can power the Cry Baby with a 9 volt battery or a Dunlop ECB-003 AC Adapter through any outlet. When you purchase the Dunlop, you get a one-year warranty, which puts your mind at ease even though the effect box is one of the most durable ever made.
- Weight – 3.7 pounds
- Dimensions – 10×2.5×4 inches
- Model number – GCB95
- Batteries – 1.9V batteries
- Color – black
- Voltage – 9
- Versatile tones
- Highly durable
- Dual powering options
- One year warranty
- A bit pricey
5. Zoom G1X FOUR Guitar Multiple-Effects Processor with Expression Pedal, With 70+ built-in effects, Amp Modeling, Looper, Rhythm Section, Tuner, Battery Powered
The G1X is quite a piece of work and clearly stands out in form when compared to the other guitar pedals. This multi-effect pedal is well endowed with function settings with a large library of downloadable effects.
It is safe to say that the G1X requires quite a bit of technical abilities to really get what you want. There is an overwhelming number of features to choose from.
What can you expect from the Zoom G1X?
- You have 71 built-in guitar effects with 13 amp models
- You can freely download the Zoom guitar lab on Mac and Windows
- A 30-second looper for recording
- 68 variations of rhythm pattern
- Aux input and standard guitar input for other external audio players (like headphones)
- It comes with expression pedals have featured controls for effects like pitch, volume, delays, and wah
- You have a battery power option and a Zoom AD-16 AC adapter as well as a USB bus power
- The autosave functions ensure that your settings are backed up, that way you can always retrieve your latest creative settings
- Weight – 2 pounds
- Dimensions – 6.2×8.5×2 inches
- Model number – G1X FOUR
- Batteries – 4 AA batteries required
- Battery type – Alkaline
- Multiple power options
- High versatility
- Very dynamic
6. Donner Yellow Fall Vintage Pure Analog Delay Guitar Effect Pedal True Bypass
If you like the feel and functionality of an analog delay guitar effect, then you may have found a perfect match. This bright yellow, vintage analog guitar pedal is one of the most unforgettable devices that have made waves in the music industry.
Many guitarists use this model for various applications and prefer to have it handy at every performance.
What special features can you look forward to?
The analog device delivers a well-constructed delay tone, with the smoothness that is catchy and competitive.
The high-quality circuit with electronic components ensures that your tone is clear and rich with organic analog delays.
The Donner is exceptional and sturdy, with a quality aluminum alloy material and true bypass circuitry that assures a transparent tone when used.
- Weight – 8 ounces
- Dimensions – 4.7x3x2.5 inches
- Model number – yellow Fall
- Number of strings – 6
- Sturdy alloy
- Versatile settings
- Easy to use
- No power options
When most people think of guitar pedals they go, “oh, that’s a bit much, is it necessary?”
This is completely understandable because your electric guitar does function perfectly without the complexities and “wah-wah” of a guitar pedal. However, a good guitarist always seeks that extra step, that additional sound effect that tickles the eardrums and amplifies your musical whims.
The long and short of it all is the quality of music made with the guitar pedal is absolutely impeccable and cannot be so demeaned as to be compared with the sound of the same guitar without a guitar pedal.
As you already know, or may have noticed, guitar pedals are just small metal boxes with varied dimensions, some within 10×10 inches while some are close to 20×20 inches. The device is very sturdy due to the fact that they are mostly controlled with the foot. You can switch through different categories of sounds, effects, and extensions by stepping on the device with your music foot.
What Do Guitar Pedals Do?
Every guitar pedal is categorized by the sorts of effects that it can create. In general, guitar pedals, when plugged into your electric guitar, alter the sound effects by modifying the sound output so that it is amplified in various tones, consistency, and other augmented properties.
The most essential guitar pedals that every guitarist should own is the boost, overdrive, reverb, fuzz, distortion, wah, and equalizer pedals
When Do You Need a Guitar Pedal?
This is the most controversial topic and has always been argued by professionals. Some say that you only need guitar pedals when you become an expert, while some are of the opinion that beginners can start off strong with a guitar pedal.
One thing to keep in mind is that most great guitarists that made unique and legendary music always used different types of guitar pedals that they considered sacred and the secret to their success.
There are opinions that using a guitar pedal as a beginner will certainly jumpstart your music skill, helping you to develop your own unique sound and find your genre early enough. There are a couple of things many beginners do not know about guitar pedals, some of these things are:
Things Beginners Should Know About Guitar Pedals
Think you know a few things about guitar pedals? Here are a couple of things you may not know:
Power supply – Not all guitar pedals come with a power supply. Only very few may surprise you with a power supply. So if you are looking to purchase a guitar stomp-box, be sure to add a 9 volt power supply to the budget (battery or adapter). This is essential in order to avoid running out of power in the middle of a major performance.
Order of Pedals – every professional guitarist that uses a mix of guitar pedals understands how important it is to arrange your pedals in the right order. This is because the signal is usually processed many times if one owns multiple pedals.
The arrangement may come in this order: distortion/ drive pedal, modulation pedal for echo, chorus, tremolo, flanger, and others. There is no compulsory arrangement so you are allowed to experiment with whatever order you want.
Extra Cables – it is also not possible to find pedals that come with cables so it is a good idea to get an extra cable or two to connect pedals together. Patch cables are also quite useful to connect between effects.
Pedal Boards – one of the most essential tools that enable you to arrange all your effects in one place is the pedalboard. Pedalboards come with Velcro tape and cables to secure your pedals in place.
These are our best choices and most revered guitar pedals in the market. There are many just like them possibly, however, these are vetted based on quality, versatility, durability, and popular opinion.
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