Behold the Power of Three
Small pedalboards are the new big pedalboards, and many guitarists are finding it useful to downsize as much as possible. With that philosophy in mind, we at Vein-Tap.com HQ decided to set ourselves a challenge: to create a pedal which could offer all kinds of overdrive and distortion tones, from a pure clean boost to full on metal roar – with sweet blues and massive rock tones in between. The results sit before you now as the Dark Triad Overdrive Distortion Pedal. Inspired by a classic overdrive circuit (the original Marshall Guv’nor), with a couple of modern additions (after all, what’s the point in yet another clone?), the Dark Triad is a fantastic way to dirty up your tone.
Listen to the Dark Triad Overdrive Distortion Pedal in Action
Please wear good headphones or use good speakers to hear the full tonal spectrum of the Dark Triad!
So, why do we call this pedal the Dark Triad? Two reasons. The first is the pedal’s three-band EQ. Independent Bass, Mid and Treble controls allow you to dial in the perfect EQ balance for your tone. The second reason is the Dark Triad’s three-position clipping switch. This switch allows you to choose between traditional silicon clipping diodes found on the original Guv’nor, Rat style clipping LEDs, and a wholly new Clean setting in the centre which removes the clipping section entirely. Read further to understand what this means…
Three Band EQ
The ability to boost or attenuate the Bass, Mid, and Treble individually is a tone chaser’s dream. It makes for an incredibly versatile pedal, and brilliantly unique tones. It allows you to scoop out the mids and turn your amp into an 80s thrash metal beast – or, crank the mids, and push through a band mix in a really commanding way. If your treble is just a little too harsh, wind it back for a smooth, pleasing, warm tone. If you want a rattling, wasp-in-a-bottle, broken amp special effect, crank the treble and take the bass and mids out completely. Or, if the lower end of your tone is causing your speakers to sound loose and flabby, tighten it up by knocking back the bass. Strat or Tele player? Crank the bass to select between your trademark bright, snappy clean and a smooth, bold, commanding overdrive with the click of a footswitch. The Dark Triad Overdrive Distortion pedal can do it all.
3 Way Clipping Diode Switch
Diode clipping sections are a large part of what adds the dirt to a distortion pedal’s circuit. Many different pedals sound the way they do because of their clipping sections. The original Guv’nor pedal, the circuit of which the Dark Triad has evolved from, had symmetrical silicone diodes, and that was the only option. The Dark Triad adds one more diode to this circuit, allowing for a more open, tube-like asymmetrical clipping section on the left side of the switch.
Push this switch to the right, and you’ll hear the slightly louder, slightly less hairy sound of symmetrical LEDs in the clipping section. Proco’s Rat distortion pedal uses LEDs in a similar way to this setting on the Dark Triad. Still dirty, still beautiful, but tastefully different to the traditional silicone of the original circuit.
More than this, you can put the clipping switch in the centre position to occlude the clipping diode section entirely. While still dirty, the Dark Triad becomes louder and the overdrive character becomes a little tamer in this position. This allows you to have a much wider sweep of the Drive control in the lower gain stages, and is ideal if you need your overdrive pedal to also function as a clean boost from time to time.
A Massive Range of Beautiful Overdrive and Distortion Tones
Let’s check out some of the tones the Dark Triad is capable of:
1. Clean EQ Boost
Any overdrive pedal worth its salt can also function as a clean boost pedal. Crank the Dark Triad’s volume control, wind the Drive control all the way back, and set the clipping switch into the centre (Clean) position to enjoy a sweet, warm clean boost. You can now use the Dark Triad’s 3 way EQ to boost or attenuate the Bass, Middle, and Treble individually – perfect for fattening up single coil pickups for a solo, or winding off any extreme treble on a bridge position humbucker.
Use this clean boost on a clean amp for a louder signal, or, push a high gain amp into an even better, more muscular distortion than the amp alone is capable of. Seriously. Put this in front of a Mesa Boogie and it’ll make those tubes scream.
2: Blues Overdrive
Push the Drive control a little further and we’re into overdrive territory. Use the clipping switch to choose how much extra hair to add to your tone, and adjust the Drive control according to how much gain you require. Finally, push the mids nice and high. You’ll cut through even the showiest backing band with a creamy, lush lead blues tone.
3: Rock Distortion
Crank the Drive control to around 1 o’clock for sinful rock distortion on a clean or already crunched amp. The clipping switch will sound great in all three positions, so choose whichever sounds best for you – though the right-position, asymmetrical silicone setting sounds best to our ears for rock distortion. Put all 3 EQ controls at 12 o’clock to begin with, and then attenuate or boost each one according to what your tone needs. You’ll be able to strum huge chords across all 6 strings, and each note will be clear and well defined. Power chords and lead work will both sound thick, focussed, powerful and strong.
4: Metal Distortion
Crank the Drive control, keep the clipping switch to the left or the right, and work the Mid control for all kinds of crushing, authoritative metal tones. Scoop the mids to take you straight to the 80s, for an early Slayer / Metallica tone, or push them back for modern metal beauty. We didn’t call this pedal the Dark Triad for nothing. It’s a Machiavellian, narcissistic psychopath of a pedal that will turn your sweet, clean amp into a snarling beast.
The Overdrive Distortion Pedal Your Pedalboard Needs
Get the Dark Triad Overdrive Distortion Pedal now! It makes more sense than sending Michonne to deal with walkers.
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