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Pedals used to be a way to boost or drive a guitar signal into an amp. Now it’s not uncommon to find pedals that emulate amps themselves. Mad Professor’s Big Tweedy covers that big American tweed tone, without a lot of fuss.
It’s quite simple control-wise; the Volume, Tone and Drive controls work in the usual fashion, while the Presence control responds like the presence control on an amp, adding a bit more subtle top end that can add some needed sparkle.
As it’s designed to capture the essence of a classic tweed amp, the drive isn’t over the top. At lower settings, it can change a simple amp like a Hot Rod Deluxe into a really responsive tone machine. To get some of those not quite crunch, not quite clean tones, where the guitar’s volume control and picking attack can really be the controlling factor, this pedal is worth it. It brings that top end chime in that sits in classic and contemporary blues, country, and rock settings.
With the drive maxed out, it can get crunchy, yet not over the top; it seems to tap into that essence of a tweed amp’s power amp section. It should be considered a low drive pedal, but the tone is a lot sweeter, one that brings a bigness, but not the buzziness of say, a fuzz unit. It feels like those lower wattage classics were just poured into the overall tone. For a power rhythm sound, it does so much, and responds equally well with single coils or humbuckers. Pair it with a boost pedal, and a guitarist who covers leads and rhythms will have all their bases covered.
A lot of players looking for this type of crunchy-ish tone, might mistakenly turn to a Tube Screamer style pedal, but this brings that actual, authentic tweed sound, and doesn’t over color things, while at the same time giving an amp-like feel and response. The street price is $195 and players who can’t swing bringing a vintage tweed amp on the road should seriously consider this for their pedalboard.
great tones, big sound.
a bit expensive.