The Halcyon Gold Overdrive just became the most exciting Klon-inspired pedal on the market – because it’s so much more than just a clone

UK effects builder Origin Effects has unveiled the Halcyon Gold Overdrive, an overdrive pedal based on the legendary Klon Centaur, but with the company’s Adaptive Circuitry built in.

As prices for the real deal soar to upwards of $5,000, Klon clones have become somewhat ubiquitous in the modern-day pedal market, with countless designs claiming to accurately replicate its sought-after natural yet mid-pushed tone. Yet Origin reckons it can take the circuit to new heights by implementing some fresh twists on the formula.

Chief among these is the Halcyon’s Adapt switch, which allows the pedal’s mid-forward voiding to fade as the pedal cleans up with the guitar volume knob and picking dynamics. This effectively gives you both of the Klon’s most revered settings at the same time: transparent boost tones at lower guitar volume settings, and mid-heavy drive at higher levels.

Other controls include a Voice switch, which adjusts between classic Klon sounds with mid hump and vintage diode clipping characteristics (albeit recreated using modern parts), and a Mod setting with a softer drive and broader mid push designed for single-coil pickups and clean amp sounds.

Origin Effects Halcyon Gold Overdrive

(Image credit: Origin Effects)

There’s also a Dry control to blend in your clean tone, which can add clarity or body when boosting an already driven amp. Origin adds that it’s adjusted the overload characteristics of the dry path to make stacking pedals a more pleasurable experience.

It certainly sounds remarkably dynamic in the demos – although Chris Buck’s divine playing probably helps – and we applaud the firm for offering a fresh take on the oft-copied circuit.

Origin has form in this arena, too, having previously evolved the Tube Screamer with its Adaptive Circuitry for the Halcyon Green overdrive, which we hailed for its nuanced dynamic response.

The Halcyon Gold Overdrive is available now for $299/£249 – head over to Origin Effects for more info.

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Michael Astley-Brown

Mike is Editor-in-Chief of GuitarWorld.com, in addition to being an offset fiend and recovering pedal addict. He has a master's degree in journalism from Cardiff University, and over a decade's experience writing and editing for guitar publications including MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitarist, as well as 20 years of recording and live experience in original and function bands. During his career, he has interviewed the likes of John Frusciante, Chris Cornell, Tom Morello, Matt Bellamy, Kirk Hammett, Jerry Cantrell, Joe Satriani, Tom DeLonge, Ed O'Brien, Polyphia, Tosin Abasi, Yvette Young and many more. In his free time, you'll find him making progressive instrumental rock under the nom de plume Maebe.