If there’s any pedal that can benefit from Gibson’s avowed two-pedals-in-one approach for the new Maestro series, it’s the humble overdrive pedal.
Do we want a transparent low to mid gain overdrive or do we want something a bit gainier and amp-like? The Ranger sorts this by giving you both, although it’s not just that one option has higher gain than the other.
The Lo position of the toggle switch is where you’ll find the lower gain overdrive, but there’s more to it than just that, as this setting also has a bit of your clean sound mixed in.
There’s not much action until the Gain knob’s at 9 o’clock, (unity gain is achieved with the Output level at max), so it’s beyond that where you’ll start to hear any effect on your sound and can explore all the beyond-clean and just breaking up sounds through to a decent amount of raunch, all retaining a touch of clarity with that clean element mixed in.
The tone knob operating as a low pass filter will adjust the top end, maybe building in some brightness or rolling it back a touch to best match your guitar amp sound.
Get the dirt you want on the Gain knob and set the output level where you need it; once your Gain knob is beyond 9 o’clock you can use the Level knob to build in a boost for when the pedal is kicked in or to drive your amp’s front end.
The Hi setting gets gainier, although not vastly so, but it does lose the clean element so the whole sound is driven.
- PRICE: $/£149
- FEATURES: True bypass, two gain modes
- CONTROLS: Gain, Level, Tone, Hi/Lo switch, Bypass footswitch
- CONNECTIONS: Standard input, standard output
- POWER: 9V battery or 9-12V DC adaptor
- DIMENSIONS: 84mm (w) x 126mm (d) x 60 mm (h)
- CONTACT: Gibson