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All my life I’ve searched for the best possible distortion on the planet. When I play metal I’m always searching for more gain. When I’m soloing I need the sustain coming from the distortion channel. I love distortion. It’s something close to my heart. I’m not even sure why, I just know it’s a high priority in my sound.
So here comes the Digitech Death Metal pedal. It looks scary, black & red, and the lettering looks like it’s etched in the metal. It also happens that this model was originally designed as a DOD pedal before the parent company Harman International had popped out the new brand we all know as Digitech where they would make trace changes to the build of the pedal.
And this thing screams! It’s hard to get this thing to back off the distortion, largely because there is no gain control knob, but if you’re like me, you’re ok with that! When I want tons of gain I turn the level to down, crank the low and high pots and scoop those mids thus getting a relatively huge sound.
Now if you need to make it sound rock, I found a way. All you have to do is turn the mid up, cut the highs, and turn down the volume on your guitar and you have a pretty smooth, creamy, warm sound. You can get even more by turning back your tone knob and get a thick, warm sound.
The biggest drawback is that the pedal is exceptionally noisy and the lacking gain control knob makes it a bit less tweakable than it could be. The noise issues introduce a bit of a learning curve to getting a good sound. Keep the volume on the pedal low and use your amp’s volume to push it. It’ll still be noisy, but not as bad as if you crank the level knob on the pedal itself to the max.
Digitech’s asking price is about $50 and that’s not too bad considering what the pedal does. Though we’d recommend you consider your budget and do some homework before you make an impulse purchase.