Maestro’s new all-analog overdrive and distortion pedals are like evil twins – two black-sheep siblings that differ in concept but work great together.
Part of Maestro’s new Original Collection – retro-chic effects, but with a pronounced and welcome modern twist and cool ’60s styling – the Ranger Overdrive is designed to emulate some of guitar world’s fave vintage tube amps, ranging from warm and expressive to attack-dog snarl. The Invader Distortion is a high-gain, all-modern effect that’s pure aggression while still being rich in harmonics. Pair ’em up, and you can stir up a crazy sonic brew.
The Ranger requires no learning curve beyond dialing in the sounds you like. It features a classic and intuitive three-knob layout with Gain (amount of overdrive), Tone, and output Level, which boasts scads of volume to go far beyond unity gain. The Hi/Lo mode toggle offers two tonalities – natural overdrive and a cleaner, more touch-sensitive sound.
The Ranger adds muscle to your signal, punching an amp with a boost that drives it into grit-like terrain. Think Blues Breakers-era Clapton and you get the possibilities.
The Invader goes beyond all, driving right past overdrive into the domain of pure distortion. Control knobs are similar in purpose to the Ranger, but the sound is all its own – 100 percent heavy-duty oomph. It also has a toggle for switching a built-in noise gate that can be fine-tuned with an internal trim pot to adjust Threshold.
This article originally appeared in VG’s December 2022 issue. All copyrights are by the author and Vintage Guitar magazine. Unauthorized replication or use is strictly prohibited.