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Electro-Harmonix Soul Food Distortion/Overdrive Pedal Reviews

4.5 stars based on 69 customer reviews
Questions about the Electro-Harmonix Soul Food Distortion/Overdrive Pedal?

Questions about the Electro-Harmonix Soul Food Distortion/Overdrive Pedal?

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  • from February 17, 2017

    Are you freaking kidding me....

    This was the best decision i ever made. Ok, I play into a Vox AC15, even at full gain there is no noise in the amp. Unfreakenbeleivable if thats a word. Anything from clean boost to soaring leads this thing delivers. I sent back a Keeley mod work station because the overdrive was noisy. Now i have a Kèeley super mod work station with this bad boy. Buy it now. Buy it now.

  • from January 23, 2017

    Soul Food

    Great touch sensitive pedal ,especially for the money.

  • from Cape cod, MA December 28, 2016

    Sweet soul food

    I've had issues in the past with electro harmonix pedals but after success with the big muff nano I thought I'd give this one a whirl. Great pedal I use it in a clean boost capacity and put it right after my distortion pedals in my chain and typically run it through my fender super champ and American standard strat it adds depth and warmth and clarity to highs. I've only got the distortion at about 12:00 and again it's a clean boost for me but this pedal has some great crunch as well. Great for blues and rock all in all love the pedal!

  • from Detroit Metro November 25, 2016

    Must Have!

    I use the Soul Food to drive the preamp tubes and to gain and edge in standing out in the mix. I put the volume at around 10 o'clock, the drive around 8 o'clock, and the treble around 11-1130. My favorite things about this pedal are that the range of the drive is really wide: you can have this as just a clean boost, or crank it into maximum overdrive with authority. Also, this really works great with single coils -- humbuckers too, but it really adds thickness and presence to single coil guitars.

    I'm in a 'bar blues' band, primarily playing rhythm guitar and some lead on an Epiphone SG Pro with Seymour Duncan '59 and '59 Custom Hybrid pickups through a Peavey Classic 30. With the Soul Food settings above, my clean tone has a little edge to it, but still warm and full. My dirty tone is a little past the point of break up (just the way I like it) so I have my pre settings on the channel a little lower than most. Soul Food gives my dirty tone a little more presence and the notes have more clarity.

    Love it!

  • from October 22, 2016

    best OD pedal on market

    absolutely great, transparent clean boost, warm overdrive, and vintage distortion all with excellence

  • from August 20, 2016Music Background:
    Professional performing and recording guitarist

    Just What The Doctor Ordered

    I have had this pedal on my board for nearly a year now, and I truly don't know what I would do without it. I want to be very clear about just how useful this pedal can be as a transparent clean boost (with the drive knob turned all the way down), and for various tone shaping applications. Beyond many tone shaping capabilities, I find the amount of gain onboard to be extremely cool and useful, and I never have any problems being heard in a thick mix due to the gradual attenuation of the bass (and some treble) as the gain is increased; your guitar sits happily in the mids. I was able to AB this pedal with other pedals of a similar intent, and I walked away very happy and confident with my purchase. A lot of people will say that this pedal is really good "for the price," but I think this pedal is great regardless of the price; it just so happens to have a very friendly price tag. I can't swear that you will have the same experience with this wonderful tool as I have, but I think that you would be doing yourself a great disservice to not give this pedal an honest shot. Check it out!

  • from Minnesota April 25, 2016Music Background:
    48 yrs ,..the road goes on forever

    perfection in simplicity

    Great chunky southern redneck overdriven tones,..very pleasantly surprised... I've had a lot of upper end pedals, blue,red,.etc. You get the hint. This pedal is the third ehx pedal I have purchased and it's really made me take another long look at ehx. Bravo Mike Matthews at ehx,...and to John short at sweetwater... Fast and efficient as usual

  • from Downingtown, PA March 29, 2016

    This is a Great Pedal!

    I was somewhat skeptical about this pedal, but after being underwhelmed by a boutique pedal claiming to do the same thing for three times the price, I figured, "why not?".

    The first Soul Food pedal arrived, and (my luck) was defective. I decided to try again. The replacement came in, and I can't stop playing through this pedal! For a "working guy", this pedal will give you 90% of what the expensive ones will do. And in a gigging situation, that's all you could ask for!

  • from Golden Valley, AZ February 23, 2016Music Background:
    Lots

    Great pedal!

    It bumps a Strat, for instance, to the foreground, and the amount of tasty gain and brightness are simply dialed in or out, still sounding like a natural Strat with some push from the amp, but at whatever volume. It's way more than a clean boost, though it can do that too, but its not a high gain pedal either. Very musical. Also cool is the true-bypass/buffer switch inside. I'm running it on TB, between a Riot and Carbon Copy. Haven’t yet tried reversing them, which I'd do if I were stacking it with the Riot, cuz I wasn't sure if I was going to use the buffer or not, and wouldn't want a buffer before the Riot.

    Naturally, the humbucker in my ES-339 drives it harder than Strats or Teles, and adjustments to the pedal or the resulting sound are inevitable.

    In short, it's very effective, versatile and amp-like, and a steal at the price. My Maxon OD9 has been kicked off the board and now sits in its box. Only thing I can't yet speak to is its longevity.

  • from New Albany, IN December 27, 2015Music Background:
    Hobby guitarist of 25+ years.

    Fantastic Overdrive

    Wanted to add a second Overdrive to my pedalboard to push my Fulltone OCD a bit more and decided on the EHX Soul Food and so far it's been exactly what I was looking for. I can't really add anything to the reviews that others haven't already pointed out but I will say you likely will not be disappointed with the EHX Soul Food. Not only does it sound great paired with the OCD but on its own as well.

    Sweetwater rocks!

  • from kingsport, TN December 14, 2015Music Background:
    Lead Guitar: "Waiting for Pavement"

    Very Nice!

    This pedal is a solid choice when looking for a classic overdrive. A good price point from a trusted company. Not really any bells or whistles going on here but similarly to song writing, simple is a good thing.The drive dialed in at noon is great but this pedal also handles the subtle side drive or the crunchy well. A great balanced pedal, would recommend to anyone playing standard or drop D. You metal heads may want something bigger but for most of us, this pedal is value!

  • from Florida August 26, 2015Music Background:
    Intermediate guitar player

    Soul Food Delight

    I bought this pedal from Sweetwater a couple of months ago and I never turn it off. This thing is amazing from a clean boost to very nice saturated grit. The reviews are right about the Soul Food. Awesome blues with some reverb to thrashing metal mated with my Earthquacker Devices Talons and everything in between has me wondering if I'll ever purchase another overdrive. I'm playing a 2011 PRS SE Santana through a Marshall Slash SL5 and it's easier to find sweet tones than bad tones now. It was worth the added cost since it was introduced and I would definitely replace it if it failed. At around 70 bucks it's not even a question... love it. Also, thanks Steve Chamoun at Sweetwater for the great support. I'm never disappointed in Sweetwater's products and service.

  • from Buchanan, GA August 24, 2015Music Background:
    contemporary christian artist/ regular on stage musician

    great overdrive for church

    Great pedal for church. Super transparent and has enough crunch to sound warm and luscious and then dial it up to hard and crunchy. Great for church bc it fits in well with the mix. Great as a multiple stage overdrive setup. You wont regret it. Also Dave Snow is the man and took care of me the whole time. Sweetwater where have you been my whole life?

  • from Connecticut July 21, 2015Music Background:
    rock, jazz, blues, funk, disco (yes-a gig is a gig)

    Everything it's cracked up to be

    I am totally impressed by the EHX Soul Food .. i set all the controls at "noon" plugged it in .. holy crap 100% improvement on my tone. I was skeptical when I 1st read all the "5 star" reviews .. but they totally hit the mark ! .. Without a doubt.. worth the $78.20. And PS ... Sweetwater .. AWESOME customer service !

  • from Murphy, TX June 19, 2015

    Excellent drive, at an excellent price

    When I first heard this pedal, I fell in love with it. I heard so many great reviews about, and the price was just unbeatable. Only real complaint is the amount of hum I get when I turn the treble to max. I definitely recommend this pedal to anyone who wants a great over-driven tone.

  • from May 8, 2015

    Soul Food

    Yep! I tried many od/dist. pedals the last 35 years, an this is it !!
    Great AC/DC tone, very realistic, wow..

  • from Duvall, WA May 6, 2015

    Great Overdrive!!!

    I bought this a few months ago and never really played with it, until i threw it with a blues driver in front. And man it has become part of guitar tone now! I use it as a more light overdrive, my blues driver just as a boost. It works really well and cuts through the mix! If your'e unsure to buy it...just click the add to cart button and go!

  • from NM April 11, 2015Music Background:
    professional

    Excellent pedal - many uses and sounds great

    I just got this pedal and it lives up to all the hype. the voicing on this pedal is very musical and flexible - the price is right and it comes with a power source - if this pedal can do it for $66 why can't every pedal do it? Electro-Harmonix really spent some time designing this pedal - in comparisons with the Klon pedal on Youtube, I had a really hard time discerning any differences - its that good. My Hellhound amp has low headroom for its clean tone but this pedal really adds a good deal of volume (clean boost) without changing the characteristics of the amp. Application tip - buy 2!!- one for the clean boost which would always be on and one setup for your overdrive tones. highly recommended!

  • from Chicago March 30, 2015

    The sweet spot

    Best money I've spent in a while. Responds to pick attack, cleans up with the volume knob. It does tasteful to raunchy. Very versatile, very amp-like. I cant make it sound bad. I Almost never turn it off.

  • from March 25, 2015

    Soul Power!!!

    I can't say enough good things about this pedal. It's become one of my main go to pedals on my board. Great transparent overdrive that is warm and easy to operate. I have this right after my boost pedal on my board which allows me to go from a very mild gain to high gain instantly. If you did the Klon but don't want to spend the green on one I highly recommend this pedal.

  • from Spokane, WA March 19, 2015Music Background:
    50 years playing

    Mellow Crunch

    I asked Charlie at Sweetwater what pedal would give me a mellow crunch at low and medium volumes. I told him what I played (a hybrid Strat: modded strat electrics in a chambered Tele body), that I liked EH pedals, and that I was looking in the $60 price range. He recommended the Soul Food and he was right. Smooth, creamy, full bite even at very low levels and very, very sweet. Thanks, Charlie.

  • from S. Arkansas, U.S.A. March 9, 2015Music Background:
    long-time amateur/hobbyist

    great pedal for a great price

    Considering I'm a newb as far as pedals go, the Soul Food does everything I need it to, and it comes with its own power supply. I wish all the pedals I wanted were this inexpensive.

  • from Dowelltown TN February 16, 2015Music Background:
    hobbyist

    Fantastic

    I absolutely adore this pedal. It's just a very good pedal and it's cheap in comparison to others. I hope it last for a long time. If it was to break I'd have to buy another one. I own and have owned a few pedal but I don't think I can do without this one ever. It's just to handy in so many ways. I started to buy a used one but it would have not came with that sweet water warranty and service. I'm glad I spent a little more for that.

  • from Sumerduck, VA January 23, 2015Music Background:
    Playing since 66... Weekend warrior since 72

    Klon alternative!

    If a Klon is anything like this, I understand the hype. Smooth buttery tones come out of you amp, by stepping on the footswitch.

  • from alabama November 4, 2014Music Background:
    Play eg at highlands college

    Best bang for your buck

    Played this live vs some of my other klon types, sounds better than them and the price is so good!

  • from Madison,WI September 24, 2014Music Background:
    Hobbyist

    Exactly what I wanted

    The Soul Food pedal does everything I wanted. Clean boost that makes all my other pedals seem more present and bypassed signals just pop at lower volumes. I could not be happier with this pedal.

  • from NY September 11, 2014Music Background:
    Hobbiest, rhythm guitar player in a local band.

    Boost to just plain mean!

    I was looking for something to help get my vox ac15 some more bite. Well I sure did pick the right pedal! Simple controls, plenty of gain. Gets classic rock tones down, can even get into hard rock, and metal when I roll the gain up and play with the top boost on my amp up. The overdrive doesn't color the natural sound of your guitar and even at high gain notes are crystal clear and articulate. I love it, it's exactly what I was looking for. This was my first purchase with sweetwater and I was blown away by the customer service! I can't recommend this site highly enough. If you have doubts about ordering online, sweetwater will put your troubles at ease. I love the customer service almost as much as I love the pedal!

  • from Southwest Georgia August 10, 2014Music Background:
    Educator, Musician, Pedal Addict

    At-ti-tude

    Bought this with the purpose of being a clean boost, possibly adding a little grit to some other pedals. Unfortunately, I LOVE the gain dimed! The best way to describe it is that it's like a ticked-off Marshall Bluesbreaker pedal! Consequently, I never bother with the clean boost function (it does that fine, though), as I usually have the gain maxed, and have found GREAT uses paired with the TS side of a JHS Sweat Tea, and what it does when paired with an EHX Deluxe Big Muff Pi should be downright illegal!!!

  • from Bethune, South Carolina July 25, 2014Music Background:
    40 + years learning to play guitar

    just get this thing

    I needed a little something to boost the vibes out of my Vibrolux. My friend has two (real) Klons, and said he was willing to sell me one. As I am just a poor, struggling, guitar mangler, the bank was "politely regretful" that it couldn't provide me with the funding required to purchase even half of one of those magnificent pedals. Enter Sweetwater and their nifty pay as you play options. I love those guys. I LOVE THIS PEDAL. Just get this thing and watch your rich friends cry into their pedalboards when they hear how great it sounds for how little it costs. Trust the hype. The Soul Food pedal rocks. (like everything else Electro Harmonic makes). It has plenty of boost to make your little amp sound huge. It adds warmth and/or crunch to my Tele and makes my American Standard Strat absolutely SING. I use it in line with my Holy Grail, a BBE Sonic Stomp, and a Fulltone Clyde wah when I pretend I'm on stage at the Royal Albert Hall. Both of my fans think I sound like Joe Bonamassa. It's THAT good.

  • from United States July 10, 2014Music Background:
    Serious hobbyist for 35 years. I've done everything in music except make a living if you know what I mean.

    OMG

    Are you freaking kidding me. This thing is INCREDIBLE. I have been buying OD pedals for years just looking for the right one. That includes the boutique models that are raved about. This very affordable pedal blows them away. I use it with a Fender '68 Custom Deluxe Reverb and it's like butter (which is a main ingredient in Soul Food by the way). I would have saved a TON of money if I had just bought this first. It is a very versatile pedal and you can dial it in to make either a single coil or a humbucker sound rich, full and crisp with clarity to spare. The treble control is better than any tone knob on all of the other pedals I have tried. The volume has a major boost that sounds natural and is very usable. I like the classic sound and this nails it. It also comes with the power supply. This is not the pedal for the Metal Heads out there. This is for the player that wants to feel like the tone is wrapping you up like a comfortable blanket you don't want to take off. Don't be afraid to spend your money on this gem.

  • from Boone, NC June 19, 2014Music Background:
    Performing Guitarist, Live Sound Engineer

    Amazing!

    What an incredible overdrive pedal! Props to Electro-Harmonix for making an affordable Klone. The primary difference between this and the original is the original has Germanium clipping, which you can get modded on by the wonderful people over at JHS Pedals if you so desire.

    On to the actual review: this pedal is, literally, the ultimate overdrive pedal, as it was created to be. The full parameters of the knobs are fully usable and offer a sound that ranges from transparent, sparkly boost to thick, sustained, saturated overdrive. This pedal is extremely touch responsive and is unlike any overdrive pedal you've ever played before. I find it hard to use any low/medium gain overdrive without wanting to switch back to Soul Food. Get one today!

  • from June 18, 2014Music Background:
    Pro Musician

    Great Little Overdrive

    I bought this as a quick fix when my custom made Klon Clone went down. Just amazed at the clarity of this little pedal. Hard to beat for the price. I will move this to my second board when my clone is repaired.

  • from chiefland, FL June 8, 2014Music Background:
    Low paid gigging Musician

    Second to None

    I wont get into sound details because the language of guitarists varies so much. This is the best Overdrive pedal I have ever used. Perfect sound of the 60's-70's and comes with the power supply, can't beat that, oh yeah you can, Sweetwater adds candy.

  • from Pa May 24, 2014Music Background:
    Hobbyist

    Soul Food

    I have been collecting distortion and fuzz pedals from various makers. This one is by far my new favorite. It does three things well 1 maintains your basic tone 2 boosts the clean signal nicely given it a bit mire girth 3 the overdriven tones added to an overdriven amp adds some fuzz but has the city and definition of the signal without making it sound like some broken speaker mess. I wasn't! sure I was even going to get this pedal because I wasn't sure what it would add to my rig and tone. Now it's not only my favorite but I loved it so much I played an extra 2 hours this weekend.

  • from Baltimore, MD. May 19, 2014Music Background:
    45 YEARS...FROM ? MARK AND THE MYSTERIANS

    "NUFF SAID"

    SOUL FOOD SHOULD BE SERVED WITH EVERY TUBE AMP
    OUT THERE....EVERYONE COULD USE A SOUL FOOD, AND AT THE
    PRICE, WHY NOT.....GREAT TONE, BREAKUP, AND DISTORTION
    WITHOUT THE DRAG...

  • from Ennis Texas April 22, 2014Music Background:
    Guitar, Electronic Repair

    soul food just what I was looking for

    Got this pedal and immediately stuck it on my pedal board behind my TubeScreamer ( 808 modded ) and driving an Excelsior amp.
    On the lower drive setting it gave my Excelsior more clean headroom
    without changing the tone one bit.
    Raised Drive to noon and it started to nicely break with touch of overdrive.
    With Drive at 3 oclock, it sounded old school overdrive/distortion but still very articulate and not muddy.
    With Drive on MAX, the mid's seem to fill in some and I had the Hendrix type sound I've wanted...
    Then tap the Tubescreamer to get controlled feedback and also the Excelsior started to growl nicely too.
    I would DEFINATELY recommend this pedal to anyone as it is really 3 pedals in one... especially at this price. well worth waiting for delivery.

  • from Savannah, Georgia March 29, 2014Music Background:
    Guitarist for 40 years

    Soul Food Distortion/Fuzz/Overdrive Pedal

    I use this to push the front end (not FX loop) of my slightly cranked amp, gain around 3 and it really sings! Great sustain and response . The tone control will add or roll off the highs. Really does make the amp sound better. Like most of you, I've tried a million pedals over the years. This one works for me.

  • from Baltimore February 6, 2014Music Background:
    Experienced

    Magnificent

    Best sounding OD pedal Ive ever owned. I love the sound of this pedal and it makes my amps sound great -all of them. EHX maybe opened a can of worms by comparing it to the Centaur because people who paid 2000 for a fuzz box will feel compelled to justify that by dumping on the Soul Food - don't believe it. This is an awesome pedal. Id love to have a JMI reissue of a Range master or a Tone - Bender but the truth is, this and a USA Big Muff are the only distortion effects I would ever need.

  • from New York January 7, 2017Music Background:
    Guitarist

    Rock N Roll

    Recently bought this pedal and it's fantastic. Its no Klon but you still get this remarkable tone and Classic Rock kick. I really enjoy playing with it. And I have to say that I have ordered many guitar related gear from various sites and Sweetwater not only has given me the best customer service I have received anywhere, but has also given me great advice regarding a lot of my purchases and I haven't been disappointed. So 4.5 stars for the pedal and 5 stars to the Sweetwater team!

  • from va September 7, 2016Music Background:
    31 years radio producer/composer/band leader

    sonic gourmet time !

    mag reviews and conventional wisdom state Soul Food goes after the Klon Centaru market. at up to $3000 on used sights i'm not about to trod down that path. i enjoy the fact that mike matthews & company produce great electronics at reasonable prices. having said that Soul Food is good eatin' for the ears. i love boutique stuff as much as the next guy....but i won't support exploiters. that's why i love EHX.

    my go-to amps for trying out new pedals are my '72 bassman silverface reconfigured to blackfack specs...and my marshall vintage modern. starting with my '77 fender strat i also plugged in a beloved ultra non-expensive 3/4 size chinese strat and my epi proplus paul. great tones on the single coils....less happy with the hummers. now....while the printed word runs its own way, EHX states very clearly in their manual turning the drive to the right increases the midrange. that's not a bad thing but it does shed verity on the tone you can expect. it also reminds me of a world famous player stating if you want to be heard in your band....concentrate on the mids. Soul Food allows that in addition to choosing a line boost. i like both. and a definite SRV vibe on the bassman amp w/this.

    with my marshall...an immediate Jimi vibe w/the strats. and superb tone on the paul. perhaps SF likes KT66s better for hummers than 5881s in the fender. its all subjective. the marshall also has adjustable gains whereas my classic fender does not.

    its the strange brilliance of this pedal that permits the perception of Jimi and SRV like nuances with a range of instruments from cheap to vintage. and at a ridiculous price, too. my hearing is pretty sensitive so i wondered....the manual states the internal switch is usually set to 'bipass' at the factory...i opened the unit and it was set to 'buffer'. once again subjective. i prefer bipass.

    Soul Food for me is champagne on a beer budget and my latest in the line of great pedals and great service from my sales engineer Dan Overstreet.

  • from shrewsbury, MA March 24, 2016Music Background:
    Songwriter/Singer/Tone Junkie

    Utterly musical drive

    This baby snuggles your tone like a warm blanket while feeding it red meat to make it strong like bull. You can lightly coat or slather; up to you. It pairs delightfully with single coils and P90s to enhance the tubular quality of single note work, yet broadens rather than squishes chords so even my bridges be fat fat fat.

  • from Boston February 15, 2016Music Background:
    Blue Light Bandits Founder

    So Solid

    Look... it's not a Klon, but it's amazing. For this price, nothing will juice up your tone so smoothly.

  • from June 22, 2015

    Great little pedal

    Got this a month or two ago. I use it all the time, mostly for lead boost, though it gets good rhythm tones too. It gets that gnarly tone without having to crank the amp up to 11, which is often a consideration. And if you DO get to run the amp at 11, well, you'll like that too! ( I could have given it 5 stars, but really, nothing blows me away that much! :) )

  • from Metro Detroit April 21, 2015Music Background:
    Long time guitar and keyboard player

    Nice sound

    Great pedal for the money- gritty to soft, with a great crunch.

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

    Delicious!

    I've tried quite a few dirt pedals, but for the cost/fun factor, ya really can't beat this one. Pair it up, it plays well with others! I got an East River Drive at the same time and these 2 get along great!

  • from Cincinnati, OH March 1, 2015Music Background:
    Musician

    Pleasant Surprise

    At first, I wasn't sure I liked the tone of the Soul Food. I let it sit for a day and gave it another shot. Boy was I surprised at the sounds I got! Never had the opportunity to use an original Klon, so I can't speak to the similarities, but I love what this meagerly priced pedal does. Great pedal at an even better price. Electro Harmonix keeps setting the bar. Let's see if the other pedal makers can keep up!

  • from Oregon, USA February 25, 2015Music Background:
    Pro Musician

    Soul Food Tastes Good!

    Very interesting overdrive/distortion pedal. Great value for the price, and it has surprised me at the easy way it gets into controllable feedback, even at low volume levels. It has a different flavor that all my other OD pedals which was a surprise, and puts out a tone that makes ya stand up and take notice! This one is definitely not a clean boost stomper as it implants its personality into what you're doing, but in a good way.

  • from Houston, Tx USA January 28, 2015Music Background:
    Amateur Musician

    Good Transparent Booster Option

    I was looking for a clean booster, something that did not add coloration to my tone. This little guy does it really good IMHO. One thing, it is interesting how this pedal reacts depending on where it is placed in the daisy chain. I tried to place it after my overdrives but it did not work for me. It was not a bad sound, just a little treble and it did not blend well with one of my overdrives. On the other hand (before overdrives), it gave me a sweet transparent booster (no gain), no coloration and blended well with the others guys.
    It has headroom galore, good tight overdrive and the option of buffer or true bypass.
    Also, you might have a little pop when you turn it on but this just happen the first time (that's why the 4.5 score), after that you can turn it on and off with no pop. This is my second Electro-Harmonix pedal and they are built like a tank, very reliable.
    All in All, good transparent booster at good price.

  • from Memphis, TN USA January 6, 2015Music Background:
    Hobbyist

    Excellent overall boost pedal

    I use this in front of my EHX Big Muff Pi & EHX Metal Muff for a tad more gain & sizzle. Perfect boost pedal when playing anything from doom boogie to scathing black metal! Just get one. EHX pedals are the best!

  • from nc December 24, 2014Music Background:
    do it all

    food for the soul

    many uses for this pedal,I use it for a slight ly dirt boost as it stacks so well.It could be used as a medium crunch ,50 watt marshall crunch and does clean boost ae well and for the price you can`t go wrong.

  • from United States November 13, 2014Music Background:
    Hobbyist musician, songwriter and composer

    Very Nice Pedal

    It says Overdrive/Distortion, but that's not really accurate; it's a nice overdrive, but even with the Drive knob DIMED, it doesn't really cross over into distortion like a DS-1 or a Rat. Okay, so that's out of the way. What this thing does do and do very well is fatten up clean tones and give you everything from clean to overdrive with your guitar's volume knob.

    I'm playing through a Peavey Classic 50, which is a pretty bright and "jangly" amp. I set the Volume at about 1 o'clock, about the same or a little less for Drive, depending on how loud I need to be, and turn the Treble back to about 11 o'clock. With a bright amp, this thing can get kind of ice-picky at the top-end.

    So, plugged in, powered up, struuuum...THE nicest cleans I've ever heard. Rich and full of harmonic content that's absent plugged straight into the amp.

    I docked it a half-point because it seems to favor my Les Paul over my Strat, and because it IS possible to get some unpleasant sounds out of this thing.

    Switching to the Lead channel on the Peavey can get you all the way into 80s metal, but you'd probably be looking at a different pedal if you wanted more gain than that.

    Played side-by-side with my TS9,, this is pedal is similar in application to the Tubescreamer: find the right settings on the pedal and leave it on for great cleans and fat overdrive, and use either another pedal or the gain channel of a multichannel amp for distortion and fuzz.

    And they're so cheap you won't possibly regret it!

  • from SoCal August 12, 2014Music Background:
    Student

    Perfect for blues

    I use this with a 5 watt Fender Vibro Champ XD and a 15 watt tweed tube amp. It gives the perfect amount of dirt for a great sounding blues. You can't beat the price especially since it includes an AC adapter.

  • from west baden springs, IN July 28, 2014Music Background:
    31 year player

    Excellent pedal

    Wonderful into a 68 custom deluxe reverb. Run the drive low for an articulate clean boost or turn it up for a smooth mid boosted overdrive that really cuts. The majority of a Klon Centaur without the 2nd mortgage. Comes with its own wall wart. Great deal.

  • from Denver, CO July 3, 2014Music Background:
    Semi Pro Musician

    It Delivers What's Promised

    I have to say that it's exactly what it's described to be and for the price it should be a nice addition to any setup. A high gain distortion pedal it's not but as a clean boost or a lower gain OD to add some "crunch" to rhythm and riff playing or some grit to solos it's a genuinely useful pedal. It's just as transparent as advertised so it does make an exceptionally good booster for single coils, to drive a tube amp onto break up, or even to chain with another OD pedal. I like it.

  • from June 10, 2014

    Love it

    The tone and functionality of this pedal is perfect if you are looking for a boost that won't destroy your tone, or an overdrive that sounds natural. Lately I've been playing with an Earthquaker Talons, and a Tube Screamer 808, and I like the sound of the Soul Food WAY better. The only complaint is that there is a popping sound sometimes when I first engage the pedal (then it disappears). Could be a dirty switch or something - don't know... But as for tone and useability... I really couldn't be happier with it.

  • from Manhattan April 11, 2014Music Background:
    studio pianist/guitarist/hippie rocker

    Versatility par excellence

    This is an amazing pedal. I was at first reluctant to put it on par with a Centaur, but I will. The thing that was perhaps most surprising was the great sustain of the effects. Really thought they'd drop off, but they don't. Volume will easily max out any tube amp you've got. The overdrive is just fun. Not sure why the named it's "soul food,' but who cares. Just a very versatile pedal and one of 2 or 3 in my vast collection that I really LOVE!

  • from Las Vegas January 5, 2017

    Great simple pedal!

    Ez to use, wonderful great old fashioned OD!

  • from February 14, 2016

    Great booster

    I use this pedal to boost other dirt pedals - Fulltone OCD and Deluxe Big Muff Pi - for a lead boost and it is really great for that. Leads just jump out with it on. Plays very well with other pedals.

    Its sound on its own is pretty treble- and high mid-heavy. I'm still experimenting with it, so maybe I can find a way to use it on its own. We'll see.

  • from blue ridge ga March 3, 2015Music Background:
    pro musician

    soul food

    a great pedal for the money. works well bt itself or as a boast with other pedals. good job

  • from The Burgh February 10, 2015Music Background:
    user/buyer/player of fine musical gear

    Functional

    Small Footprint - reasonable price - needed an additional, small overdrive to fill a space on the board - Been buying EH for over 45 years

  • from CT (USA) December 31, 2014Music Background:
    Serious hobbyist

    Soul Food Distortion

    I've tried a number of overdrive and distortion pedals over the years and dismissed them all for for various reasons. Based on the reviews and the price I figured I'd give this pedal a try. I'm glad I did. This little guy can go from a mild overdrive to all out raunch. The clean boost is powerful as heck. You just need to work the Vol and Drive pots together. Crank up the Vol and back off the Drive a bit and vice versa. It was easy to get the right amount of overdrive. I'm a set it and forget it guy so this pedal is great for that. If I want clean boost only I go to a different pedal. I recommend this pedal.

    And a plug for Sweetwater while I'm at it. Their customer service and attention make me want to thank them for selling to me. Sweetwater is my go to place for gear from now on.

  • from Belpre, Oh December 20, 2014Music Background:
    Hobbyist

    Soul Food Pedal by EHX

    I love this pedal. It goes from subtle to awesome. It's not over the top in any way but gives my guitar the sound and flavor I've been looking for.
    Great Pedal!

  • from Michigan December 7, 2014

    effective

    Soul Food is effective effect. Sweetwater has solid service. Thanks!

  • from United States October 3, 2014

    EH Soul Food Pedal

    I purchased this pedal for my 23 year old son for his birthday. Both of my sons are in successful bands and are very knowledgeable when it comes to their equipment. He specifically asked for this pedal and is so happy with its performance. Thank you and just thought I would share!

  • from San Francisco August 26, 2014Music Background:
    Beginning guitar student at 65 years of age

    Great boost pedal but beware design quirk

    Since Im new to guitar I cant comment reliably on anything having to do with the tone of the Soul Food. What I will say is that this pedal adds oodles of good clean boost to my little practice amp, allowing it to perform at volumes much greater than its meager size would suggest. The Soul Food exhibits an odd design quirk in that the back lid of the case can not be resealed with the battery in its compartment. Theres just not enough room for the flange around the lid to seat. I contacted EHX and they said, yeah, although theres an internal connector for a 9v battery the unit is not meant to be run on battery power. Make of this what you will, I think the engineers cramped the designers when they crammed too much into the space, and they came out on top. EHX actually invited me to "move things around." Ha!

  • from Lyme, NH August 29, 2014Music Background:
    semi-pro musician

    soul food tone

    I love the tone of this pedal and I'm still getting used to dialing in the different sounds. I'm using it to replace my vintage tube screamer which is great but I felt it colors the sound more than this pedal. My only concern is the foot switch which has been inconsistent. Most of my pedals are vintage and the switches are sturdy and consistent in how you hit them. Either I'm not quite used to this one or it's faulty. I seem to have to really stomp it to get it to turn off.

  • from PA April 6, 2015Music Background:
    studio owner, guitarist

    Decent, but not great.

    I sat down and compared this alongside five other OD pedals (including one other Klon-inspired) with my Tele and 65 Princeton Reverb Reissue. This was the least inspiring of the bunch and had harsher high-mids than I can take with my setup. I could get away with using it as a clean boost, but didn't like what I heard adding any additional gain. The volume knob was also very sensitive around 9-10 o'clock... would go from very loud to completely silent with the softest touch.

  • from Wake Forest, NC March 9, 2015Music Background:
    Almost 15 years studying, performing, composing

    Soul Food

    The Soul Food has a nice range in overdrive, from subtle and warm to very thick. The volume knob gives a decent clean boost, and the treble knob varies the high end harmonics really well. You can really get a lot of good sounds out of this pedal, and it's very dynamic, responding well to picking strength. Overall the character was a little less "sincere" or "convincing" than I wanted it to be, but I haven't been experimenting with it for very long. The sound can get a little thin at times in trying to be "transparent" if you're not careful.

  • from Medford, MA October 23, 2014Music Background:
    Amateur Musician

    Disappointed

    The minute I plugged this pedal in and tried it out it cut all of the bottom end out of my signal. I tried all the settings and it was just like I'd turned the bass dial down to zero on my amp. Sorry, EH, but I dont' think this qualifies as "transparent". Maybe the pedal was a lemon, but I returned it to Sweetwater and they took it back, no probs.

Questions about the Electro-Harmonix Soul Food Distortion/Overdrive Pedal?

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