Posted by
Nov 21, 2019

Seymour Duncan may be famous for its guitar pickups, but it has always been manufacturing also guitar pedals, and in the last few years the builder has put a lot of resources in this niche, coming up with interesting devices that push the stompbox format’s standard features in ways that maximize creativity and flexibility.

The brand new Diamondhead Distortion/Boost is no exception: described as a “Multi-Stage” distortion with separate boost, this is a pedal dedicated to recreating the classic guitar tones that defined ’70s and ’80s Metal and Hard Rock:

Think Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Ozzy – their combination of tube heads and drive pedals resulted in some of the most iconic guitar tones of all time.

The Drive knob will deliver anything from raw medium gain sounds to screaming high-gain distortion, while the three band active EQ section (operating in the 80Hz, 800Hz and 6kHz frequency bands) will give the player plenty of tonal flexibility.

A toggle switch called SAT, placed under the Gain knob on the bottom right, is based on the company’s 805 Overdrive and…

…adds a 24dB pre-gain boost that tightens up the low end for more aggressive and defined attack. Subtly rolling off lows and highs, it allows the mid-range to cut through, creating chewy, harmonic saturation.

The Boost is an independent circuit with its own footswitch and level and adds up to 15db of gain, always useful to take things to the next level during solos or busy sections.

Oh, and… there’s also this!

Diamondhead?also shines as a pre-amp. By running it into the effects return of your tube amp, or in front of our?PowerStage?power amps you’ll be rewarded with a hot-rodded high gain amp tone with body, bite, and character.

Also, although it’s not stressed in the release notes, it looks like the pedal can work at 18V, which always add extra headroom.

Check out the videos below.

 

Diamondhead is a Multistage Distortion + Boost pedal that captures the tone and feel of a hot-rodded tube amp being pushed by a drive or boost pedal – the guitar sound that defined classic 70s and 80s Metal and Hard Rock.

Description

Across genres and generations, the sound of a half stack pushed hard with drive and boost has become a standard for rock tones. No genre or era of players has been more heavily defined by these iconic sounds than the classic metal and hard rock pioneers of the late seventies and eighties. Think Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Ozzy – their combination of tube heads and drive pedals resulted in some of the most iconic guitar tones of all time.

Diamondhead captures the power and versatility of that era-defining rig in a package that will find a space on any pedalboard. Whether you’re running it into a clean pedal platform amp or into the frontend of an overdriven tube amp, the Diamondhead provides the flexibility and tonal clarity to authentically capture tbet you would like he sound that defined an era.

It all starts with the drive – from breathy and raw medium gain sounds to screaming high-gain harmonics,?Diamondhead?is deep and three-dimensional, with clarity and touch response.

Three powerful active EQ controls maximize the potential of the gain section. A tightly defined bass control boosts and cuts at?80 Hz, with surgical precision – making the low end huge, but never muddy. A broader mid-range control set right at?800?Hz allows for massive scooped chunk, hyper aggressive modern attack, and everything in between. And the Treble control, set at 6 kHz, adds sizzle, cut, and attack.

The?SAT?Switch?(based on our 805 Overdrive) adds a 24dB pre-gain boost that tightens up the low end for more aggressive and defined attack. Subtly rolling off lows and highs, it allows the mid-range to cut through, creating chewy, harmonic saturation.

Independent from the Drive section, the Boost (activated with the left footswitch) offers 0 to 15 dB of available gain and can be used as a lead boost or to push an amp on the edge into overdrive. Try using it with a slightly dirty amp as the first gain stage and adding the Drive section for your highest gain sounds.

Diamondhead?also shines as a pre-amp. By running it into the effects return of your tube amp, or in front of our?PowerStage?power amps you’ll be rewarded with a hot-rodded high gain amp tone with body, bite, and character.

If you’ve gone through a pile of overdrives, distortions, and boost pedals searching for that quintessential 80s metal or hard rock tone and haven’t been satisfied, make?Diamondhead?the heart of your rig – versatile enough to handle any covers set, precise enough to surgically dial in your own tone – it captures the rock n roll spirit of a high gain head pushed to the edge