Carr Super Bee Demo - First Look

Crave big black-panel Fender feel in an amp that doesn’t bust eardrums? Carr's little brute delivers the substance and the sting.

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Tube power and impressive cab sims make up a versatile do-it-all drive that’s a sweet value, too.

A variety of great drive tones packed into a versatile and well-designed pedal.

No option to stack channels in series. No independent headphone level control.

$299

Blackstar Dept. 10 Dual Drive
blackstaramps.com

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Though they can still seem like a novelty, tube-loaded drive pedals have been with us for decades. The B.K. Butler Tube Driver arrived in the late ’70s. The Mesa/Boogie V-Twin, the Electro-Harmonix English Muff’n, and others popped up in the decades that followed. Now, a new push toward tube-driven pedals is afoot—fueled largely by the modeling boom, pedal preamps with impulse response and speaker-simulation capabilities, and the urge to lend tube color to both modes of amplification.

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The foremost pedal for Nordic metal nastiness returns, more potent than ever.

A clever re-working of a classic metal-toned distortion, with enhanced versatility.

Arguably less versatile than Boss would like us to think.

$179

Boss HM-2W Waza Craft Heavy Metal
boss.info

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It's comforting that Boss pedals haven't changed their basic look and format since the late '70s. For all the boutique marvels that have come and gone, opening a Boss box still instills a sense of reliability. Boss pedals aren't just comfortingly familiar and bulletproof, though. Many Boss circuits are groundbreaking, timeless classics that deliver distinctive sonic results. And there's a strong sense of classicism about the HM-2w Waza Craft Heavy Metal pedal, a revamped reissue of the popular distortion originally manufactured from 1983 to 1991.

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