« Boss DS-1 Tried and True for basic Distortion tone »Published on 08/08/12 at 11:36
The tone control takes the DS-1 into bright to bassy territory depending on the setting. Level sets your level of the pedal tone in comparision to your amp tone. FInally the Distortion dial gives you more or less distortion depending on your preference. As I said, very straight forward and easy to use configuration with few bells and whistles. Typical Boss battery configuration for easy changing of the 9 volt. Can take a power adapter as well.
This is a tough one for me because before I recently became a tone snob, I used the DS-1 through a Fender Twin Reverb for many years and loved it. It served its purpose which was to make a clean toned amp sound dirty and hairy. I have to say back then I loved it and it was all I needed to gig with. To my more picky ears these days, it can be a little harsh and fizzy but that is what it's supposed to do so I don't mean that in a negative way. We all have preferences for what we'd like to hear and to my ears these days, I prefer a warmer distortion less abrasive and more compressed. This is not it if that is the goal. It creates an open, fizzy gain that works for most hard rock songs and in a mix who can really tell anyway.
I like the simplicity of this unit and when I gigged with it years ago I really like it a lot. While I have one now as a back up, I don't actively use it anymore but I think it is perfect for what it is and it is truly an old standby. Hard to find anyone in my group that hasn't used this at one point or another. Yes there are better units out there but for simplicity and price this one is tried and true and works well.