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Boss DF-2 SUPER Feedbacker & Distortion
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All user reviews for the Boss DF-2 SUPER Feedbacker & Distortion

Distortion from Boss

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Average Score:
( 4.1/5 based on 12 reviews )
4 reviews
33 %
6 reviews
50 %
1 review
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1 review
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Value For Money : Excellent
Users reviews
  • TheStratGuyTheStratGuy

    Boss DF-2 SUPER Feedbacker & DistortionPublished on 01/11/08 at 08:15
    ***WARNING: THE FOLLOWING REVIEW APPLIES FOR A JAPAN-MADE BOSS DF-2 - NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH LATER TAIWAN-BUILT MODELS WHICH MAY --well, most likely DO-- SOUND DIFFERENT***

    It is a DS1-type distortion combined with a unique feature: an artificial feedback generator -- play a single note, hold the pedal's switch and your note is now repeated endlessly, well as long as you don't release the switch at least.

    It has 4 knobs -- the classical level-tone-dist, plus an "overtone" feature that allows if need be to make the artificial feedback more bright-sounding, although the more you push it and the more synthetic it sounds. Of course you can keep on playing while the overtone is hear…
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    ***WARNING: THE FOLLOWING REVIEW APPLIES FOR A JAPAN-MADE BOSS DF-2 - NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH LATER TAIWAN-BUILT MODELS WHICH MAY --well, most likely DO-- SOUND DIFFERENT***

    It is a DS1-type distortion combined with a unique feature: an artificial feedback generator -- play a single note, hold the pedal's switch and your note is now repeated endlessly, well as long as you don't release the switch at least.

    It has 4 knobs -- the classical level-tone-dist, plus an "overtone" feature that allows if need be to make the artificial feedback more bright-sounding, although the more you push it and the more synthetic it sounds. Of course you can keep on playing while the overtone is heard, which gives the impression of two layers of guitar sound stacking up -- hence the name "overtone" for the control knob I suppose.
    A few facts about this pedal: The Boss DF-2 was produced between 1984 and 1994, first in Japan and then in Taiwan when Boss relocated its factory there. The first models bore the inscription "Super Distortion and Feedbacker" before Boss changed it to "Super Feedbacker and Distortion" due to a threat by Di Marzio (which owned the rights to the name "Super Distortion" ) to sue Boss for copyright infringement. This explains why the price of "Super Distortion" models is usually much higher than that of "Super Feedbacker" ones, although there's no difference in the way they were built.

    UTILIZATION

    Well, a 4-knobs stompbox can't be that much complicated, can it!? Regarding the manual I doubt anyone has kept it due to the long time this pedal has been discontinued, but you still can get a .pdf copy of it at Roland's website (yes, for those of you who don't know Boss belongs to Roland).

    For once the manual is actually useful as it explains some subtleties which may elude you --especially regarding the way to get the feedbacker sound well-- , but once again with only four knobs you'd just have to tweak for a little while before finding your sound anyway.

    SOUND QUALITY

    The distortion in itself is, well, DS1/DS2-esque, that is just average in itself in my humble opinion. Don't expect anything good out of it with the tone knob over 12:00 to 13:00 (I usually keep it between 10 and 11). Where this pedal really shines is, of course, in providing this artificial feedback which is particularly suitable for noise/punk/grunge twisted sounds ala Sonic Youth.

    I use it with a Mexican Fender Fat Strat through a SansAmp, but generally I have it followed by another distortion (TS9 clone, Big Muff or anything else) so that the other pedal should shape the distinctive distortion tone of my overall sound.

    Also, the feedback sound is affected by a sort of tremolo-sounding vibration, which you may or may not like... but which should easily be cut off provided you know how to mod effect pedals (the schematics are available on the web).

    OVERALL OPINION

    I found this box for 45€ used (a bargain!) in a pawnshop some 2 years ago. I had been looking for it for a while then but the price was usually way higher (100€ and more), plus the one I had tested before sounded too "cold" to me (maybe it was a Taiwan-made model? I hadn't checked that at the time).

    This model has never been reissued by Boss nor copied by anyone, and in a way it can easily be understood why: it only seems to provide limited perspectives as far as the sound is concerned. Unless you're playing grunge/noise/experimental/punk rock (or eventually electro-rock if you push the "overtone" setting high enough) there's hardly a real interest in preferring this one over a "normal" DS-1. I haven't had the opportunity to try it with a keyboard yet, but I heard it provides good results...
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  • Audiofanzine FRAudiofanzine FR

    Boss DF-2 SUPER Feedbacker & DistortionPublished on 03/15/02 at 02:28
    (Originally written by nihilsbajo/translated from Audiofanzine FR)

    I have a "Super Distortion / Feedbacker" (analog effect) made in Japan. Volume, tone and gain controls plus a feedback control. Typical heavy-duty Boss manufacturing. When you open the housing you get the impression that Boss had to go to great lengths to fit all those components inside.
    I'll take 1 point off because there is no way to control the feedback volume (see below).

    UTILIZATION

    Someone who doesn't know how to use this pedal should buy a brain rather than a distortion pedal.
    The tone knob has a very wide control range, too wide would say some. For normal applications, set this control in the center positio…
    Read more
    (Originally written by nihilsbajo/translated from Audiofanzine FR)

    I have a "Super Distortion / Feedbacker" (analog effect) made in Japan. Volume, tone and gain controls plus a feedback control. Typical heavy-duty Boss manufacturing. When you open the housing you get the impression that Boss had to go to great lengths to fit all those components inside.
    I'll take 1 point off because there is no way to control the feedback volume (see below).

    UTILIZATION

    Someone who doesn't know how to use this pedal should buy a brain rather than a distortion pedal.
    The tone knob has a very wide control range, too wide would say some. For normal applications, set this control in the center position. If you want a very dull sound it can be interesting to turn it down to the minimum, for a shrill sound turn it up to the maximum. And you can also play around with the pickup settings of your guitar and the amp's EQ.
    The feedback knob controls the emphasized frequency while you step on the footswitch to generate the artificial feedback. It's some sort of tone knob for the feedback.
    To activate the feedback effect the distortion must be on and you must hold down the footswitch as long as you want the feedback to last. It's a bit cumbersome if you want to control other effects at the same time or if you need a very long feedback.

    SOUND QUALITY

    At the beginning I found the distortion sound really bad. I used it very rarely, only with a minimum gain so that I could use the feedback function, but now I've gotten used to it and it can provide a very interesting sound depending on the amp. I discovered that with my small Marshall amp the sound comes close to a Mesa. This impression is even stronger with my Randall tube amp but you'll get a more "British" sound with other amps. Anyway you'll get very good results with a tube amp. I heard comments about this distortion pedal not being that good. But that's maybe if you use a very bad made-in-Taiwan amp and the wrong settings, but with my gear I find the sound is very good!
    The feedback function is excellent but I miss a dedicated volume control for it because it often sounds softer than the notes I play and I have to adjust my pick attack for it to be audible while I'm playing. But it simulates all sorts of feedback quite realistically, from the feedback of a guitar placed close to the amp to microphone feedback. Excellent.
    EDIT: I first tested it with a power supply but the sound changes in battery operation! When battery operated the pedal has another sound character. The tone is more "aggressive" and fits harder music styles better. But it's a matter of taste, I personally don't like it that much.

    OVERALL OPINION

    After several months I'm very satisfied with the performance, especially considering the price! I saw the pedal is sold at very high prices on Ebay USA and it was the same in Europe several months or years ago. With its unique features, this effect pedal is really underestimated.
    Up to now it has been a unique, indestructible and great sounding pedal!
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