Noise Boyz Review
A super simple, heavy distortion that gives you lots of gain and saturation without sounding too much like a fuzz pedal.
I love pedals that only have one knob because they make setting your tone about as easy as possible. The Acapulco Gold from Earthquaker Devices is no exception, giving you everything from a light crunch at the low settings to a super high gain distortion with its one knob turned all the way up. Let’s take a listen. The first sample below was recorded with the knob set to about 3. If I had to find one weakness with this pedal, it is at this low setting the tone sounds a little bit thin to me. It still gives you a nice light distortion verging on overdrive, but it lacks the saturation you’ll get at the higher settings (which to be fair is probably the manufacturer’s intention in terms of allowing you to get more of an overdrive than distortion sound at the low settings).
Now to crank things up a bit. Below is the same riff played with knob between the 6 and 7 position. You can hear that the sound is a much more saturated distortion that brings the riff to life a lot more. I absolutely love the distortion at this setting because it definitely rips but doesn’t turn your sound into a fuzz pedal. It is great for getting both big power chord sounds and tons of sustain on your solos but doesn’t get too muddy and retains the clarity of the notes.
And now of course for the great Noise Boyz tradition of turning everything up to 10. I got a little self-indulgent on this setting because as I was playing I just loved how much the pedal was rocking. At this setting you get pretty close to fuzz-like levels of gain but without that muddiness in the low end that is often a problem with fuzz pedals. I threw in an extra sample playing the main riff from Led Zeppelin’s excellent and underrated track ‘Nobody’s Fault but Mine’ because the pedal was just begging me to play it (I swear) and I absolutely love how the pedal sounds on isolated leads.
To sum things up, there’s not all that much to say about the Acapulco Gold given its inherent simplicity. The tone sounds a little thin to me at the lowest settings and I’d probably prefer an overdrive for that kind of sound (I recommend the
1 x 1/4"
1 x 1/4"
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