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Electro-Harmonix East River Drive Classic Overdrive Pedal Reviews

4.5 stars based on 21 customer reviews
Questions about the Electro-Harmonix East River Drive Classic Overdrive Pedal?

Questions about the Electro-Harmonix East River Drive Classic Overdrive Pedal?

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  • from Mtn. Home, AR April 25, 2017

    Hands down best TS for me

    This is an absolutely incredible transparent to mid gain overdrive. Its easily the best TS based pedal I've ever used, including many well beyond its price. The ERD just has the mojo. It sounds almost exactly like an 808, but with a hair more low end to my ears. The little bit of added bass/low mids really thickens things up, when being used as both a boost and stand alone drive pedal. I use it mostly as a boost (gain 0, volume max) into an already saturated Orange Tube Amp. Modern Orange amps have an incredible distorted tone, but its a tad fuzzy and loose and spongy in the lower end. The ERD tightens it right up with a dash of compression while still retaining more of the bass than a standard ts. It instantly turned my amp into a tight metal machine. It makes all my palm mutes very percussive and cutting (with a chuggy bass underneath), while your leads have endless sustain, and sound sweet and singing due to the upper mid boost. I use it in front of my clean channel on the edge of breakup already, and usually dial the gain in around 9-11 o clock, with the volume wide open, and it gives you that sweet clean yet crunchy blues sound in spades. You get an incredibly dynamic drive at these lower settings too, lighten up on the pick attack and get cleaner, and the heavier your hand the crunchier things get. Gives you that sweet singing, compressed yet dynamic blues sound, and at next to nothing.

  • from Louisiana September 9, 2016Music Background:
    6 years musical experience, singer/songwriter/musician, Music major @Louisiana College.

    Absolute Steal

    I had to replace my TS9 (Tube Screamer) recently. I got this based on some recommendations. For the price, it has blown me away. I personally think it's even better than the TS9. Very user friendly and good overall. I'd definitely pick this this one up.

  • from Honolulu, Hawaii August 13, 2016

    Steal of a Deal

    The best overdrive I have ever tried at any price. Extremely dynamic and touch responsive. Crisp and bright and clear without ever being edgy or shrill. EH strikes again!

  • from June 2, 2016

    Great overdrive

    I really like this overdrive. I have a TS9 and I think the tone I get from this one is better. I put a J Rocket Audio silver archer in front of it as a clean boost and use it with a Princeton reverb reissue. It sounds great. Very useful for classic rock overdrive. The price is too good to be true. This is not a cheap, low quality product. I can't wait to get more EHX effects.

  • from May 18, 2016Music Background:
    50 years of playin guitar!!!all kinds most genres

    east river drive

    i have two other overdrives, a zen and a mojo, and for the money this is the one i leave on almost all the time, i play strats primarily occasionally a semi hollow and the tone of this thing at band volume is amazingly sweet, has a beautiful singing quality that is not easy to put in words but evokes the quality of the lead lines emotions, for 80 bux, unbelievable. EHX knocks it outa the park with this one. i do run it through an old bandmaster reverb head or a bassman sometimes

  • from North of Chapman Ranch, Texas May 4, 2016Music Background:
    Too complicated

    nice polite boost

    This is the gain pedal for clean freaks like me. The East River Drive puts a nice edge on everything without going all splatter gainey. This is truly a positive addition to my gear.

  • from December 19, 2015


    buy one now. for the first time ever i am seriously considering running two of the same pedals on one board. It stacks incredibly,tonal variations are glorious... ive tried hundreds of ODs and this is my number one by far now. over pedals that cost 4 times as much

  • from April 9, 2015

    East River Drive - Classic Overdrive

    LOVE IT!!!!!!!!

  • from Angola Indiana August 11, 2014Music Background:
    Guitar teacher, studio guitarist


    I was looking for a very specific type of overdrive . I wasn't looking for one to use as a standalone overdrive. I was looking for one that mainly I could use as a lead boost, over an already overdriven channel. But I wanted one that didn't drastically change the sound of my amp, just one that thickened up the sound, boosted the volume, and allowed it to cut through the mix better. While I was at Sweetwater I tried out all of the new drive pedals from Electro Harmonix. I tried the Soul Fool, Hot Tubes Nano, The OD Glove, and the East River Drive. For me the East River Drive just fit the bill perfectly. Once engaged it boosted my volume, fattened the sound, added some upper mids that will make my sound really cut thru, but didn't darken the highs, or make the low end disappear. By itself it gives a very warm musical drive for blues or light rock. But primarily its best use is as. A boost for an already driven lead tone. A close second was the OD Glove. It sounded awesome! By itself it had much more gain and a more powerful distortion sound. But for a boost it compressed everything a bit too much. It just didn't sound as natural as the East River. If I needed a stand alone drive unit I would have gotten the Glove. So for me the East River Drive was just what I was looking for. And at this price its a no brainer!

  • from Canal Fulton, OH May 1, 2014Music Background:
    Music Maniac

    Awesome OD

    This pedal stacks well with my Earthquaker Devices Hoof Fuzz or with my amps dirty channel. It also sounds great on its own and the tone knob really allows you a nice range of sounds. Keep in mind though that this pedal is a lighter OD, which is exactly what I was looking for. It has become a key part of my pedal board!

  • from Gloucester, VA April 5, 2014Music Background:
    10+ years as a musician, live sound, and 5 years as a recording engineer.

    Can't go wrong

    For the price, I was a little skeptical, but the sound clips I listened to online sounded too good not to give it a try. Wow. I can't emphasize enough how great this pedal is! I have owned a TS-808 and sold it because I didn't like it. This pedal blows the TS808 away at 1/3 of the cost! Works excellent as a clean boost (lots of headroom) or a light-medium gain overdrive. You really can't go wrong with this pedal. If you want to get into heavy overdrive/saturated tones, I recommend the Glove from the same series of pedals, but I imagine that the two would work well together too. For the price, it's a no brainer. Buy it.

  • from North Dakota November 28, 2013Music Background:
    40+ years steady gigs! all styles

    What a nice surprise!

    I saw this overdrive go on sale...and since I have an insatiable need to collect drive pedals I thought what the heck...at this price...practically no risk. Then when I got it and test drove it...I was blown away!! This pedal agrees with almost all my amps...and plays well with most pedals! It has great definition and focus and a very savory character! I LOVE THIS PEDAL! It's built like a brick and has instantly become a key pedal on my board.

  • from va July 1, 2016Music Background:
    31 years radio producer/songwriter/band leader

    as true as nyc

    not long ago a neophyte in a posting was asking about a "pedal". i responded there is no such thing in guitar effects. each company has its own distinctive vox with colour and nuance....and such is the case with East River Drive. i own a number of ehx effx--their distortion / overdrive boxes are like sonic wines for the ear. this box sounds great on its own but recently i started putting the ehx crayon before it and i love the sum total of the parts.

    it imparts a fine line of grit to my strats. on my epi les paul an even more gorgeous tone--think james gang a la joe walsh 1969.

    great sound from ehx and great service from sweetwater via Dan Overstreet

  • from Atlanta, GA USA April 10, 2015Music Background:
    Semi-professional player with 30+ years playing experience.

    Better than expected

    I had been reading a lot about the East River Drive (ERD) pedal and it sounded like it might be a good solution to my issues with the TS-9 I had been using for years. The TS-9 is great, but IMO I found its tone to be somewhat muddy. The clips I had seen on the ERD seemed to indicate a broader, clearer tonal palette than what was possible to get from the TS-9. Considering the great price on the ERD, I figured I'd give it a shot. Bottom line: the TS-9 is off the pedal board. With the ERD you get all the great OD you'd expect from the TS-9, but with much better tonal qualities. Plus, I did not realize, until using the ERD, how much the TS-9 colored the sound of my guitars. With the ERD, your guitar sounds like your guitar on a clean setting—just overdriven. With the TS-9, the natural tone of the guitar is changed somewhat, IMO. So, if you're looking for this kind of classic OD sound, this is the pedal to have.

  • from Spfld, MO March 8, 2015Music Background:
    Guitarist in a working band


    Ya gotta like this one! With all the TS variants out there, ya cant beat this one for the price/fun factor. I paired mine up with the Soul Food and it's opened up some sonic doors that I hadn't been thru before. Forced me to redo my board and now I'm a happy guy!

  • from Minneapolis MN May 7, 2014Music Background:
    Church Musician,Hobbyist,Student

    Great Sounding Overdrive Pedal

    I bought this pedal a month ago and I love it,at first I was going to get OD GLOVE but than I tried out this one and immediately got it,it has a wide range of tone,anything from sharp''fuzzy''drive,-too-,nice crunchy clean,it also works great as a booster,my advice for you pedal-searchers out there, get something that suets You,this one does for me!

  • from Mission Viejo, California April 4, 2014Music Background:
    Guitar enthusiast

    Great OD

    I've use this on several of my amps, i find it works excellent on two of my amps in particular. These are a 78 Fender Vibro Champ and, a new DSL15C. For good tone at low volume plug a ERD into a Blackstar HT-1 with a Highway One Telecaster and, have it on the overdrive channel. This might have a taste more low end than the TS808. The TS808 slightly edges it out but, only very slightly. Anyone looking for a killer tube screamer pedal on a budge should check this out!

  • from Rochester, NY November 10, 2013Music Background:
    Hobbyist/Aspiring Musician, Church Musician

    Great lower output OD at a great price

    Just received this pedal a couple days ago, it's a great compliment to my Boss Super Overdrive as this is a little less hot then the Boss. Hopefully will sound even better after I upgrade the pickups in my guitar.

  • from December 10, 2016

    Great buy

    Great pedal for the price, i use it to boost the signal on a tube amp and it gives it that extra bite.

  • from May 16, 2014Music Background:
    Pushing 60 have been playing since 12

    EHX East River Drive

    Love the tone, a little brighter than a TS9 and more volume on tap. Allows you to dial back the drive then boost your preamp. Nice and quiet when engaged, very little hiss. Great pedal.

  • from Boca Raton, FL June 20, 2014Music Background:
    Ametuar Guitarist

    Decent Screamer

    Compared with a tube screamer, i found it not as musical. for the price phenomenal pedal. After reading all the reviews i was expecting a little better. Im glad i purchased it and i would not return it. i have it on a small pedal board that goes with me to jams.

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