NAMM 2019 has come and gone, and it’s time to take stock of what stompable devices left a mark on our collective mind!
To do that, we gathered all the “Best Of” articles and videos focused on the guitar pedals released at NAMM and we created an aggregate chart of them! We only found five list this year, but nonetheless we think the results reflect quite accurately the general consensus.
Here’s the list of the Best of NAMM list we took into consideration, in rigorous alphabetical order:
- BestGuitarEffects.com: Top 22 Best Pedals of The NAMM Show 2019
- Guitar.com: The Best New Pedals at NAMM 2019
- GuitarPedalX: The Best New Pedals In and Around Winter NAMM 2019 Show
- Music Radar: The 14 best new guitar effects pedals of 2018
- Reverb.com: Andy’s 7 Pedal Picks on the NAMM 2019 Floor | Reverb
The method we used to aggregate these lists and create this “final” Best Of NAMM chart was very simple: we gave 1 point to each pedal when it was mentioned in one of these lists. We didn’t include pedals by companies that didn’t exhibit at NAMM 2019 (GuitarPedalX’s list had a few).
Here we go then!
BEST TWO PEDALS AT NAMM 2019 (5 points)
These two pedals got 5 mentions out of five! Strymon’s return to the stompbox world with the new delay Volante (after two years spent focusing on their first Eurorack product) was welcomed by pedal lovers with with infinite hype and praise, but the real surprise of NAMM 2019 was Beetronics’ Swarm, a very original take on the “pitch-shifted” fuzz, presented at the Anaheim convention with through an (unbelievably under-reported) uber-cool video station.
BRONZE MEDAL (4 points)
Considering its uniqueness, forward-thinking design, and build quality (also thanks to the Benson Amps connection), the Chase Bliss Audio Preamp Mk II probably deserved to be up there with the other top contenders. The Wisconsin based company announced that this pedal is the first device of a series named Automatone, which has sparked excitement about what’s in store for the upcoming months and years.
TOP PERFORMERS (3 points)
Gathering three points out of five lists, these are pedals that should be on everybody’s radar, from a nice blend of heavyweight manufacturers and top notch boutique shops. It’s interesting to notice how a rather traditional but high quality chorus (the ThorpyFX one) can still receive high marks from the community of stompbox reviewers.
OUTSTANDING DEVICES (2 points)
8. Alexander Pedals Radical Delay DX
Chase Bliss Blooper Looper
Ernie Ball VPJR Tuner
Ibanez Vemuram Overdrive Pro TSV808
Rainger FX The Drone Rainger
Red Panda Particle V2
Seymour Duncan Dark Sun
SolidGoldFX Lysis (prototype)
Spaceman Mission Control
Tsakalis Audio Works Six B.O.D.
These are pedals that were mentioned in two out of the five lists we considered. This list is a nice blend of traditional and edgy designs by both established and emerging manufacturers.
This is the list of pedals that were mentioned only once in the five Best of NAMM lists:
Anasounds Elements Spring Reverb
Caroline Guitar Company Megabyte
Catalinbread Coriolis Effect
Danelectro The Breakdown
Dunlop Billy Gibbons Siete Santos Octavio Fuzz
EarthQuaker Devices Swiss Things
EHX Mono Synth
Empress Effects Zoia
Foxpedal Quiver Harmonic Tremolo
Free The Tone Future Factory
Fuzzrocious Knob Jawn
GFI System Synesthesia
JHS Clover ’Edge’-style PreAmp / EQ
Keeley Eccos Stereo Vintage Tape Flanger Delay
Keeley Electronics Fuzz Bender
Laney Secret Path
MXR Dookie Drive
Old Blood Noise Endeavors Rêver
Origin Effects RevivalDRIVE Compact
Poly Effects Digit
Rainger FX Dr Freakenstein Chop Fuzz
Source Audio Spectrum Intelligent Filter
TWA Mini Morph Modulated Fuzz/Distortion
Two Notes Torpedo C.A.B. M
Walrus Audio Lillian