The Baby Blues Distortion/Boost, is Rockbox founder Chris Campbell’s attempt at crafting a highly versatile distortion.
Rockbox’s head honcho Chris Campbell has certainly seen his fair share of industry success. As the former Marketing Director for Dean Markley, Campbell has been in the music industry since 1971. While working with artists throughout the years, he received a ton of input from guitarists about tone. Since starting Rockbox, Campbell has taken those decades of input and poured them into his own designs—most notably with his successful Boiling Point Overdrive—which have found their way onto the pedalboards of Elliot Easton, Richie Sambora, Jimmy Vivino, and other pros. Campbell’s newest creation, the Baby Blues Distortion/Boost, is his attempt at crafting a highly versatile distortion.Sonic Options
The Baby Blues is one of Rockbox’s more feature-laden pedals. There’s a ton of versatility on hand, with three knobs for Gain, Tone, and Volume, as well as switches for Overall Boost and Treble Boost, and two independent Drive settings, plus an internal variable resistor, which can further fine tune the tone.
The two Drive switches engage drastically different distortions. The first is more compressed with a noticeable scoop in the midrange. The second is less compressed and more mid-laden, giving it considerably more volume. The tone can be shaped further with the two Boost switches, making the Baby Blues one of the most versatile pedals in Rockbox’s lineup. The uses for the pedal are stretched even further with its clean boost possibilities, which can be dialed in when both of the Drive switches are off. Yet even in that mode, monstrous amounts of distortion are available, if the situation calls for it.Rock Me, Baby
With a name like Baby Blues, you’d think Rockbox’s newest distortion would be a prime tool for classic, low-gain playing. While that’s correct with some settings, the pedal is capable of so much more. There’s an unreal amount of distortion buried within its circuit, with some settings putting the box with its swirly blue paint job into heavy metal territory.
Inserted between a 2011 Fender Blacktop Stratocaster and a Mesa/Boogie Multi-Watt Dual Rectifier’s clean channel, the Baby Blues stung, sang, and soared with an incredible bite and powerful presence. I was able to coax some rather convincing Vox-ish tones out of it with the second Drive stage and Treble Boost switched on, plus a slight amount of gain thrown in for good measure.
Some of the pedal’s best tones came from driving my amp’s clean channel slightly with the pedal pushing at max volume, with only the Overall Boost and first Drive stage switched in. With the right rig and these simple settings, you can produce some very rich, heavenly single-note tones, à la Terry Kath.
After grabbing a 1978 Gibson Les Paul Custom, I dove into the highly compressed first Drive stage, cranked the Gain knob and flipped on both Boost switches. Some seriously heavy tones emerged from the depths of the Mesa’s clean channel, with a grind reminiscent of early Alice in Chains dirges. Having a switch to boost the mids in this mode would have been great, as higher drive settings caused the tone to muddy up a bit.The Verdict
There’s certainly nothing babyish about the Rockbox Baby Blues. It can go from clean, chimey boosting to howling distortions with ease—and then some. The first Drive stage’s compressed gain could use a little more midrange for harder riff rock, but that’s a small quibble in comparison to the rest of the tones the pedal has to offer.
you’re after a versatile, organic distortion pedal that’s not afraid to hang with soulful blues and hard rockers alike.
a simple, single-gain overdrive or boost is all you need.
Street $349 - Rockbox Electronics - rockbox.com
Kick off the holiday season by shopping for the guitar player in your life at Guitar Center! Now through December 24th 2022, save on exclusive instruments, accessories, apparel, and more with hundreds of items at their lowest prices of the year.
We’ve compiled this year’s best deals in the 2022 Holiday Gift Guide presented by Guitar Center.
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About Mystery Stocking
Each year, Premier Guitar likes to put out these mystery boxes as a part of bringing some fun to the holiday season. Remember, this is supposed to be a fun holiday treat! If the contents of this box will ruin your holiday, deplete the last of your bank account, or end your ability to see the good in humanity, it may not be for you.
- This year's Mystery Stocking will cost $44.95. ($39.95 + $5 Flat shipping)
- Each box will be guaranteed to contain $40 or more in value.
- US only. (Sorry World.)
- Make sure your shipping address is correct.
- Have your credit card ready to go before you refresh the page. Paypal is not available. Autofill may not fill in your information.
- There will be NO REFUNDS given.
- There has been a huge demand for these in the past. We really did sell out in less than 4 minutes last year. When they are gone, they are gone.
- One per household, one per person.
Q: What's in the Mystery Stocking?
A: It wouldn't be much of a surprise if we told you, now would it?
Q: Will I definitely get my money worth?
Q: Can I return it if I don't like it?
A: Nope. All sales final.
Q: What if I live outside the US?
A: Sorry, US only.
Q. How much is it?
A. $39.95 Plus $5 shipping
Q. When will it ship?
A. On or before December 10, 2022.
Q. What form of payment do you accept?
A. Credit cards only. Sorry, no Paypal for this.
Q. Can I ship to a different location than my billing address?
Q. I tried last year and didn't get one. Will I get one this year?
A. There is an overwhelming demand for Mystery Stocking. Be sure you have a fast internet connection and be ready when they go on sale. Last year we sold out in 3 min 33 seconds.
Q. I want to buy 5. How can I buy 5?
A. You can't. This year, we're limiting to one per household, so more people can get in on the fun!
Featuring the Adaptive Circuitry recently introduced on their Halcyon Green Overdrive, Origin Effects have brought us a pedal with a character all of its own and a new flavor of drive.
Origin Effects introduce the new M-EQ DRIVER mid booster & drive pedal. Based on a vintage Pultec studio EQ, this unique pedal offers a range of mid-focused tones, from a subtle mid boost to thick, resonant overdrive. Featuring the Adaptive Circuitry recently introduced on their Halcyon Green Overdrive, Origin Effects have brought us a pedal with a character all of its own and a new flavor of drive.
A choice of three mid-range frequencies ensures that you can boost just the right part of your guitar signal and, when pushed harder, can elicit a range of saturation from a classic “mid-hump” overdrive to fierce “cocked wah” distortion. Thanks to the Adaptive Circuitry, the high-end roll-off of the Cut control is reduced as the pedal cleans up. This allows for a smooth transition from warm overdrive to bright clean tones in response to playing dynamics or guitar volume knob changes.
Introducing... M-EQ DRIVER || Mid Booster & Drive
Built-in the UK to the highest standards, the M-EQ DRIVER continues the Origin Effects tradition of vintage, studio-inspired tones in modern guitar pedals. The Origin Effects M-EQ DRIVER is available now from Origin Effects dealers worldwide.
RRP: 259 GBP (Inc VAT) / 319 USD (Ex TAX)
For more information, please visit origineffects.com.
The new finish, according to Lava Music, is “inspired by the beauty of the golden hour,” a shining time just before sunset and after sunrise when photographers covet to capture stunning pictures.
With bright and warm golden hues, the new finish adds a brilliant metallic glow to the surface of Lava ME 3, complementing its AirSonic 2 carbon fiber unibody which features L3 Preamp with FreeBoost 2.0, delivers industry-leading sounds by breakthrough acoustic technologies, and houses a multi-touch display powered by Lava-developed HILAVA system.
Speaking of the HILAVA system, Lava Music also added four new effects: Nebula, Desert Rose, Cassette, and Edge of Breakup. As unique as their names sound, they are very much different from what we normally know about effects. Programmed into the HILAVA system, each of the four is powered by the company’s latest ArctanDrive algorithm and incorporates effects like Pitch Shift, Delay, and Reverb. And every one of those incorporated sub-effects comes with various parameters that players can adjust to design unique, overdriven sounds by just tapping on the multi-touch display. That said, those effects enable users to play with overdriven tone on an acoustic-electric guitar without even plugging in any external gear.
LAVA ME 3 | Now in Golden Hour | LAVA MUSIC
Lava Me 3 in Golden Hour is now available starting from $999 on LAVA MUSIC, Amazon, and local guitar dealerships near you.
For more information, please visit store.lavamusic.com.