JFET booster and germanium limiter unite to create sparkling, airy, signal-bumping bliss.
I love clean boost pedals. They’re streamlined, simple, and good ones can add body and harmonic complexity to my inexpensive little solid-state Vox just as easily as they can nudge my Bassman into a heavy and sparkling tone paradise. Fulltone’s new 2B is a great clean boost—in fact it’s one of the finest I’ve ever used.
The compact, sturdy, and elegant 2B is essentially the clean boost section of the excellent Fulltone Full-Drive 3. It also works as a buffer whether it’s on or off—making it a superb post-fuzz/pre-delay buffer/boost on a busy board. The boost itself is beautiful—up to 20dB of JFET-driven, refined, high-headroom muscle that’s airy, detailed, and smooth. (The not-too-trebly tones also suggest that Mike Fuller’s expertise with Maestro EP-3 Echoplexes and their superb preamps paid off here.) But it’s the “dynamic” control that provides the extra spoonful of magic. This little knob controls a germanium diode limiter that softens transient spikes. At its lowest settings you hear the 2B in all its wide-spectrum harmonic splendor. Turn clockwise and you’ll hear a progressively more controlled and contained, but still exceptionally dynamic boost signal. What a killer little pedal!
Test gear: Rickenbacker 330, Fender Jaguar with Seymour Duncan “Jaguar Hot” pickups, silverface Fender Bassman with Warehouse G12C/S speakers, Vox Pathfinder, ’72 Fender Champ.