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Guitar Pedals & Effects

PRS Sonzera Amplifier Demo
Don Carr visits PRS headquarters to try out their line of Sonzera amplifiers. Don is... Read more »
Wampler Mini Ego Compressor Pedal
Mitch Gallagher presents the Wampler Mini Ego Compressor pedal. It boasts the same... Read more »
PRS Wood Library 408 Semi-hollow Guitar Review
Don Carr presents the PRS Wood Library 408 semi-hollowbody guitar. Sweetwater has... Read more »
Disc Makers Releases Free Home Studio Handbook
Our friends at Disc Makers have published their latest free guide: The Home Studio... Read more »
Editors' Picks: Coolest New Gear of 2017... So Far
Here at Sweetwater we constantly scan the horizon looking for new and innovative... Read more »

Need Help Choosing?

Sweetwater's friendly and knowledgeable Sales Engineers have extensive backgrounds in music, recording, and live sound. They're ready to help you find the right solution, so give one of them a call today! (800) 222-4700

Best customer service I've ever encountered. My guitar arrived ahead of the date it was supposed to, in flawless condition. Played well right out of the box. I will be buying all of my gear from you, from here on out. You made me feel like I was ordering a custom guitar, just for me. I was treated like a valuable customer.
Christopher, Savannah, GA

About Guitar Effects
Very few subjects dealing with electric guitar are as deep and unending as effects. The guitar effect is an industry unto itself, with players still using everything from old amps with built-in reverb and tremolo to brand-new technology like Line 6's Helix multi-effects. Effects are so pervasive that most guitarists keep multiple stompboxes in their rigs at all times. From single pedals designed to enhance the guitar's tone to designs that create otherworldly sounds, there are enough types, brands, and formats to keep every guitarist's gear addiction satiated for a very long time to come.

Where the journey started
Sun Records introduced the world to slapback tape echo in the 1950s with the sounds of Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, and Carl Perkins. Soon guitarists were wanting ways to replicate those tones live. The very first effects designed specifically for electric guitar were spring reverb and tremolo, often built in to tube amplifiers in the early '60s. Tape delay units like the EchoSonic, Echoplex, and Roland Space Echo brought a new world of repeating possibilities to players. And Jimi Hendrix, with his Fuzz Face, Octavia, and Wah Wah pedals, kicked the doors of guitar effects innovation wide open. Players such as U2's The Edge, Rage Against the Machine's Tom Morello, and King Crimson's Robert Fripp have defined brand-new styles of playing based around guitar effects.

Types of guitar effects
While there is an ever-growing list of effects for guitar out there, most fall into four main groups: distortion, time based, modulation, and filters. Distortion pedals include overdrives like the Ibanez Tube Screamer, distortions like the BOSS DS-1, and the classic fuzz such as Electro-Harmonix's Big Muff Pi. MXR, JHS, Line 6, and TC Electronic all make stellar time-based delays and reverbs. Examples of these include the BOSS DD-7 delay, Line 6 DL4, TC Electronic Hall of Fame reverb, and Eventide's Space reverb pedal. Chorus, flanging, phasers, vibrato, and rotary effects fall into the modulation category. Iconic examples of these effects are the vintage Songbird Tri-Stereo Chorus rack unit and the popular G-Force multi-effects units. And of course no pedalboard would be complete without filter effects like the Dunlop Cry Baby wah pedals, MXR M108 EQ, and Electro-Harmonix Q-Tron envelope filters.
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