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Customer Kudos "zZounds is great! They offer monthly installment payments for their customers and I always get good customer service via email from them when I have questions. When you call, the people on the other end of the line are actual musicians themselves and if they specialize in something else than what you are interested in, they'll get someone that does to answer any questions. Great experiences with zZounds are what I've come to expect! " - customer on October 24, 2014
Dirty. Overdriven. Fuzzed Out.

Buying Guide: Distortion, Overdrive, Fuzz, and Boost Effects

Musicians and audiences can't get enough of the raging, thick, crushing, saturated, overtone-filled thump of a clipping audio signal. Turn on any popular song, and there is bound to be some distortion, overdrive, fuzz or boost added to an instrument.

Today's distortion effects are a far cry from the days when most distortion was accidental. The low wattage of early amplifiers made it easy to distort a signal -- your tone became an out-of-control harmonic monster by just cranking up the amp's volume. Musicians immediately liked what they heard. This high-gain sound eventually became so popular that early electric guitarists would even slash their amps' speaker cones to make their sound as roaring as possible.

Luckily for your speakers, the brightest minds in music were able to create portable and sonically versatile effects pedals. zZounds' exclusive Distortion Effects Buying Guide will help you choose the perfect distortion, overdrive, fuzz, or boost pedal to give you the exact kind of distorted tones you're looking for.

Get in the loop: see all of our effects buying guides »

Distortion and Overdrive Pedals
Distortion and overdrive pedals compress your signal's peaks, loading it up with harmonics by sending it through one or multiple stages of clipping. There are a number of components that can crush and thicken your signal, each with their own unique tones and abilities.

Distortion pedals affect your signal at any volume level. This makes them perfect for switching between clean and high-gain sounds, or playing at a low volume. Their versatility in creating everything from smooth textures to highly saturated metal tones make them a essential part of your effects chain.

Overdrive pedals add distortion to your audio signal by mimicking the effect cranking up the volume of tube amps. This soft clipping produces warm, harmonically-dense tone that is affected by the signal's gain level -- the higher the level, the nastier the overdrive.

Classic Distortion and Overdrive Pedals:
Boss DS-1 Distortion Pedal
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$44.95
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Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive Overdrive Pedal
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DOD 250 Analog Overdrive Pedal
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$89.95
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Modern distortion and overdrive effects pedals have varied designs that offer even more crunchy, harmonically-dense tones. Features like multiple bands of EQ, adjustable tone filters and layering of distortion let players dial in the most customizable distorted, overdriven tones yet.

Modern Distortion and Overdrive Pedals:
EarthQuaker Devices Palisades Overdrive Pedal
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$199.95
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or 4 payments of $62.49
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Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer Overdrive Pedal
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Wampler Euphoria Natural Transparent Overdrive
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Blackstar HT DUAL High-Voltage Tube Distortion Pedal
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$179.95
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or 4 payments of $62.50
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With distortion and overdrive pedals so popular -- even essential to your signal chain -- manufacturers have committed themselves to building affordable distortion and overdrive effects. These red-hot distortion and overdrive pedals will open up your tone -- and at under $100, save you money on your journey to saturation salvation.

Distortion and Overdrive Pedals Under $100:
MXR M104 Distortion+ Distortion Pedal
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Pro Co Rat2 Distortion Pedal
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Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff Distortion Pedal
Play as You Pay on orders $249+
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Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive Pedal
Play as You Pay on orders $249+
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Fuzz and Boost
The fuzzed-out tones of guitarists in the '60s were some of the most memorable and influential in popular music -- and they were often created with fuzz pedals. These first fuzz pedals created a buzzing, rumbling effect that was quickly embraced by some of the most legendary players, letting them push their sound into uncharted tonal territory.

Boost pedals became popular in the quest to make a more transparent, but still powerful-sounding tone, after the first fuzz pedals had been dirtying up guitars for a few years. Boost effects overdrive your signal by boosting the gain of the signal enough to overload your amp's tubes. This takes your tone from 10 to 11, making boost pedals perfect for accentuating lead lines or thickening up your rhythm sound with their complex yet natural tone.

Players consistently demand the dense, harmonically rich tones of the classic fuzz and boost pedals heard in the most popular and influential recordings and performances. Their tones and sonic ferocity are unmistakable, and continue to influence today's modern sounds.

Fuzz and Boost: Classic Sounds:
MXR M133 Micro Amp Boost Pedal
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Dunlop Fuzz Face Fuzz Pedal
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$114.95
Save 38%
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There is hardly enough fuzz or boost to keep musicians happy, and these pedals continue to advance and update the classic fuzz and boost sounds. With advanced circuitry, improved reliability, and humongous tone, modern fuzz and boost pedals offer the perfect blend of insanity and discipline to impress the biggest fuzz and boost tweakers.

Fuzz and Boost: Modern Sounds:
EarthQuaker Devices Hoof Fuzz Pedal
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Red Witch Seven Sisters Ruby Fuzz Pedal
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Pigtronix Class A Boost Preamp Pedal
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Seymour Duncan Pickup Booster Pedal
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Shop all distortion effects pedals »

Boost pedals and fuzz pedals are essential to crafting the thick and textured tones of classic songs. With tons of features and rich tone, these pedals will add plenty of texture to your sound for under $100.

Fuzz and Boost Pedals Under $100:
Mooer Pure Boost Clean Boost Pedal
Play as You Pay on orders $249+
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MXR M103 Blue Box Fuzz/Octave Pedal
Play as You Pay on orders $249+
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Boss FZ-5 Fuzz Pedal
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800-zZounds (800-996-8637)
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A temporary customer reference number is assigned to each customer only while they are shopping on zZounds.com. If you call our customer service department for assistance, this number makes it easier for us to answer any questions you have about products, services or purchases.
 
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Available on
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Need it now but short of cash? All we need is the first payment up front and the rest in easy monthly payments!

Fast approval.
We approve everyone, with very few exceptions, as long as we can verify your identity.
No interest. Ever.
It's just as if you paid the whole amount up front!
No paperwork. Nothing to track.
No application to mail or fax, no bills to pay. We automatically charge the payments to your credit card.

We'll wait on your money so you don't have to wait for your gear!

When you checkout, just click the Play as you Pay checkbox to indicate which installment plan you wish to use.

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on most orders $29+

Just $1.99 on
smaller orders

Really heavy stuff might cost you a
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Why fight traffic and pushy salesmen when we'll bring your gear straight to your home, free of charge?

zZounds free shipping is really free!
No hidden charges or hassles on returns.
Fast, reliable delivery
We have warehouses on both coasts, so most shipments arrive in 3 days or less.
We don't collect sales tax. Bonus!
Only NJ residents pay tax during checkout.
close [x]What is this?
A temporary customer reference number is assigned to each customer only while they are shopping on zZounds.com. If you call our customer service department for assistance, this number makes it easier for us to answer any questions you have about products, services or purchases.
close [x]

1. zZounds offers the industry‘s most musician-friendly payment plans

zZounds offers a variety of Play as You Pay installment plans that allow you to get the gear you want today. While our competitors might offer house credit cards that require you to fill out an application and pass a credit check, our payment plans are easy to get, simple to use, and, best of all, accrue zero interest. Unlike those house credit cards that can leave you vulnerable to exorbitant interest charges once the promotional period ends, we never have and never will charge interest when you take advantage of one of the zZounds Play as You Pay plans.

zZounds payment plans details »

2. zZounds guarantees the lowest price

Seen it for less somewhere else? Get it for less at zZounds. Simply click the “Seen it for less?” link on any product page and as long as we‘re not losing money, we‘ll beat any legitimate competitor‘s lowest price, usually within two hours. Want our best price even faster? Call us at 800-zZounds (800-996-8637), and we‘ll provide you with a lower price on the phone. Also, if you purchase from us and later find the product for less elsewhere, call or email us within 45 days, and we‘ll refund you the difference.

zZounds.com price match details »

3. zZounds gets you your gear fast

At zZounds, you‘ll get your gear fast and, usually, with free delivery. Because we have warehouses in New Jersey, Nevada and Mississippi, nearly 95 percent of Americans reside within our two-day shipping zones. Combine this with the fact that many of our best-selling products qualify for free two-day delivery and you get expedited shipping without the additional cost.

zZounds.com shipping details »

4. zZounds makes returns super easy

Buy it, try it, like it, or return it to us for a full refund. It‘s just that simple. If you‘re not in love with what you bought, return it to zZounds within 45 days, and we‘ll promptly arrange for an exchange or a refund. No hassles. No hidden charges. And if a product‘s defective or damaged, call us at 800-zZounds (800-996-8637), and we‘ll email you a prepaid shipping label so you can easily return it to us at zero cost to you.

zZounds.com return details »

5. zZounds delivers top-rated customer service

zZounds has received multiple Bizrate® Circle of Excellence Platinum awards, placing us in the top 0.7 percent of Bizrate‘s network of 5,200 retailers. Our success in meeting the needs of our customers -- since 1996, we‘ve satisfied over 1,000,000 people -- is due in large part to the fact that zZounds only hires experienced musicians to answer your calls and emails, and they are never paid a commission.

zZounds.com customer service »
close [x]
Available on
orders $249+
learn more

Need it now but short of cash? All we need is the first payment up front and the rest in easy monthly payments!

Fast approval.
We approve everyone, with very few exceptions, as long as we can verify your identity.
No interest. Ever.
It's just as if you paid the whole amount up front!
No paperwork. Nothing to track.
No application to mail or fax, no bills to pay. We automatically charge the payments to your credit card.

We'll wait on your money so you don't have to wait for your gear!

When you checkout, just click the Play as you Pay checkbox to indicate which installment plan you wish to use.

close [x]
on most orders $29+

Just $1.99 on
smaller orders

Really heavy stuff might cost you a
little more

learn more

Why fight traffic and pushy salesmen when we'll bring your gear straight to your home, free of charge?

zZounds free shipping is really free!
No hidden charges or hassles on returns.
Fast, reliable delivery
We have warehouses on both coasts, so most shipments arrive in 3 days or less.
We don't collect sales tax. Bonus!
Only NJ residents pay tax during checkout.
close [x]

A guarantee so solid, you never have to worry about price when shopping at zZounds

We'll beat any price
Simply click the Seen it for less? link next to the gear you want or call us at 800-zZounds (800-996-8637)
Got a coupon from another site?
Use it with us - we'll beat those prices, too!
Find a better price after buying from us?
No problem. We'll refund you the difference for 45 days, so you'll never regret buying from zZounds.

You'll still get the trustworthy service you've come to expect from zZounds, without paying more for your gear!