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based on 72 Customer Reviews
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By Jack Ryan
December 30, 2017
This is great sounding at a great price! Is it perfect? No, but it is no less perfect than something costing a lot more and not sounding as good as this pedal. I read one review in which the guy was not satisfied because he said it sounded like "80's glam rock." I totally disagree. If you can play and have a decent amp - you can get a variety of great sounds out of this little box. It seems like so many players like a fuzzy, buzzy type overdrive sound. I prefer a thicker creamy sound and you can dial that up with this pedal. For a mere $35, I was willing to roll the dice - I found a diamond in the rough.
January 1, 2018
This pedal just blows me away. This is my first Joyo pedal... if the others are anything like this I see a Joyo collection coming on. Playing side by side with the BOSS BD-2 makes me regret the BOSS purchase. This Joyo has got the crunch but its also got a MUCH wider range. Any gear snobs who scoff at this pedal today will be trying to hunt them down on auction 20 years from now. If my current setup went up in a fire, the first thing I would replace would be my Stratocaster and the 2nd thing I'd replace is this Joyo pedal. I can't speak to the stage worthiness of this pedal... I'm no audiophile, I'm no wannabe rock star... I'm just a guy who plays guitar for himself and the range and quality of sound I get from this pedal is just unbelievable. This pedal is classic rock but covers the blues, hard rock, and some 90's alternative/metal sound.
December 15, 2017
If you hate fuzzy distortion then you will love this pedal I had a boss ds 1 and metal zone mt 2 and did not like them much because they're so fizzy they are ok but this pedal sonically sounds so much better to me. it does plexi tones very well on lower gain settings and full on Marshall crunch on higher settings if that is what you're looking for then this is for you. it offers rugged construction and true bypass. the only problem I have had is that unity gain is at around 9 o clock this pedal is hot and has lots of head room props to joyo for this mi crunch box clone.
By I'm Wearing My D-Pants Right Now
December 11, 2017
If it wasn't for all the good reviews, I never would have thought to order this thing. Like most guitarists I take a "get what you pay for" attitude towards gear, and was skeptical that this pedal would be anything too special. This thing absolutely rocks. It's very high gain, I have the gain dialed in at about noon and it is pretty brutal. The pots are quite sensitive, a tiny adjustment to any of the 3 goes a long way. I play it with Strat and Les Paul into a 6 watt VHT combo (10" speaker). I'm astonished at the "big amp" sounds I can achieve.
November 6, 2017
Great clone of a much more expensive Crunch Box pedal. True bypass. Knobs and switch are sturdy. Great for amps that have only a master volume and no gain knob because you can dial in the dirt at bedroom levels. This is a Marshall type distortion (more mids, less scooped). No Brutalzzz - there are better pedals to cop the scooped 5150 or triple rectofier kachunky palm muting downtuned type thing, but you can get close with the right amp EQ and this thing dimed. I agree with another reviewer- this thing has a very high output- so be forewarned the first time you plug in. Unity is around 8 o'clock on the level knob. It gets thumbs up for the sound/price ratio. If you don't mind a longer shipping time, these pedals can be found more cheaply by searching the web. This was my fourth Joyo pedal and I believe Joyo and the Dano Cool Cat line are some of the better deals going these days in terms of price/quality.
By Otto Correct
October 31, 2017
According to the ad copy, this pedal "replicates Full-Stack Marshall crunch." As the other reviewers will testify, it does indeed do just that. What I'm loving about this pedal is that it really is very amp like. Dial back the volume on your guitar and it cleans up. Its responsive to your picking attack, its distortion is very very harmonically rich, and it does give you a Marshall type sound, good boost in the mids and bass, giving your tone the sonic density that those amps are famous for. Sad to say, it actually does the full-stack thing better than my ProCo Rat, which has for years been my favorite distortion pedal. The Rat is fantastic and I have no plans to sell mine, don't get me wrong, but the Crunch Distortion can get the raging full-stack tones the Rat can, but has a tighter bottom end, less noise, and a more open sound than the Rat. Individual notes ring out great on the Crunch Distortion. Its a great pedal period. Its a darn guitar miracle at $40. As a side point, I play lots of Ramones stuff and this pedal, more than any other, gives me that awesome Johnny Ramone tone. I was running my gold-top with P-90's into this pedal, then into the sparkling clean '65 twin reverb setting on my Fender Mustang II (this pedal plays well with modeling amps, which is a rarity, let me tell you) and with some tweaking I was getting a FANTASTIC Ramones tone, better than I've ever got with my Rat, my Boss DS-1, DS-2, HM-2, ANYTHING else I've owned (and I've owned over 2 dozen other dirt boxes over the years). This is the pedal that finally did it, it just nails that cranked 70's Marshall stack sound. My hat's off to Joyo. They made a fantastic distortion, one of the very best I've ever played, and they're practically giving it away. Buy one, you'll use it, you'll love it, you'll be happy you bought it.
October 18, 2017
I have an assorted array of overdrive pedals that I've built from kits or purchased outright. Since I know how pedals are built I'm not a boutique snob because I know the guts of these things are all the same. The magic is in the layout, and when the layout is exactly the same as a $200 pedal, it makes absolutely no sense to buy that one when you can get the same pedal for $50 or less. Sure, components are of different quality, but we are talking minimal sonic differences. I've always really wanted an OCD pedal and I have a Joyo Ultimate drive, and the Danelectro Cool Cat Distortion that are same circuit clones of the OCD, but they just don't sound good in front of my Blackstar HT Studio 20. The Crunch Distortion gave me the AC/DC sound I needed. It's loud, gritty, and cuts through a band mix well. Something the OCD pedals just don't do. I also HIGHLY recommend the Joyo Sweet Baby. As I'm getting older, I'm discovering more and more often that the Tube Screamer just isn't the OD pedal for me. I want my pedals to be more transparent, and the Sweet Baby is perfect for that. Same goes for the Crunch too. Very transparent pedal for the amount of crunch you can get.
By C J.
June 3, 2017
This is supposedly a clone of the MI Audio Crunch Box. I can not comment on this as I have never played this pedal. What I can say however with 30 years playing experience is that this is a very good pedal. When one takes into account the price it is a great pedal. I own this the classic overdrive and the ultimate overdrive by joyo. This has the most distortion. It has a nice ragged edge to it and is great for classic to hard rock. It does have a bit of noise at high gain but much less than the boss stuff I have had experience with. It is solidly built and apprears road worthy. great pedal and great value. I would have no hesitation buying this or any other joyo product
May 31, 2017
I ordered the Joyo Crunch Distortion after hearing many good reviews on this pedal on various guitar forums. I have to agree - I am very impressed with it so far. It really performs way above its price point. I have been disappointed by most of the distortion pedals I've tried in the past, so I decided to try this one out since the price was right. And as I said, I am really pleased with it. Has a great Marshall-esque tone. Quality knobs that work well, taper correctly, and do what they're supposed to. The footswitch action is nice and smooth. Comes with a new battery. I also might as well throw in that I love the "tomato soup" Fiesta Red-style color, too. My unit came without the shark graphics that I have noticed are on some of these models - and I was happy about that!
April 19, 2017
This pedal does a great job of say generic AC/DCish sound through a simple amp simulator, which makes it my go to pedal for when I want light crunch at low volume without wearing out any tube amps. my setup is pedal ---> digitech RP unit with a fender clean amp sim, EQ, headphone output ---> 4x12 cab. To me, its good for getting that kind of over the top, wild 80s midrangey Marshall sound. It does sound like a pedal, but one isn't as likely to notice the difference at lower volumes, which is where this pedal shines. To me, the Hot Plexi sounds more "real", closer than this. That being said, this pedal can be cleaner than the hot plexi, which is why I tend to use this one, JF-03, for when I want a classic rock type sound, and save the Hot Plexi for hair metal, EVH, and more gainey stuff stuff. Through an actual tube amp, the Hot Plexi will sound better, maybe because the Crunch distortion comes off as shrill through a typical tube amp.
April 17, 2017
I wanted to upgrade my distortion from a boss DS-1 (because it blows) to a sound like a fat Marshall stack. My friend recommended joyo's pedals and I was a little unsure at first because of how cheap they were and are. These pedals are amazing. I'm never paying full price for a pedal again. When the gain is turned all the way down there is no distortion at all so you could use this as a boost pedal by only using the volume knob. You can get overdrive sounds out of this pedal but the gain goes up fast!!! That is excactly what I wanted. A hard rock, Brian May tone. This pedal rocks! Build quality seems very good as well. Fingers crossed! The only small gripe I have is that the tone knob doesn't really work well so you will need to have an EQ or it will sound really dark Also, this is a clone of MI AUDIO'S CRUNCH BOX. So the ultimate question is, why pay $140 when you can go joyo for $30 and get the same sound, and sometimes better! CHEERS AND KEEP ON ROCKIN'! :D
March 22, 2017
Plenty of gain on hand. Lots of sustain! This thing can get really loud. It gives your inexpensive tube amp that Marshall crunch. Built well, it's casing is made out of metal, not plastic. Inexpensive but performs and sounds just as well as boutique boxes costing 3 times as much. If you're looking for your first cheap distortion pedal, forget the Boss DS-1 and get this one! Well worth the money. Bad: Adds a little noise & hiss specially to single coils (strats & teles). You might need to use a noise gate to tame the noise. Quieter with humbuckers but hums when I use it with my Xotic EP Booster which I always keep on. It doesn't happen when I boost my overdrives (OCD & Hardwire CM-2). If you move farther away from your amp, the hum disappears but you can still hear some noise. I guess this is typical for distortion boxes.
By Chris R
March 16, 2017
It really cuts through the mix for me. It can go from mild to bombastic, and that was nice for my new board build that is only sporting two od/dist pedals.Those two pedals works nicely together. Simple, tough design, good tone, great price! Time will tell how it lasts? Buy it through the Amazon vendor cheaperpedals.com. They test before shipping which is nice! Most the time their price is cheaper at Amazon than their own site. I've called them for questions, got a human and some good advice as well. Don't get them shipped from China, too long and you don't really save more than 2-5 bucks. I love all my joyos, biyangs and donners.
By Winston Waldemayer
March 6, 2017
I wanted something to go in front of my Yamaha THR10 amp. Set the THR10 to FLAT setting, plugged in my ESP EC1000T/CTM with EMG 60 and 81 in the bridge and it was some great tone. Sounds as close to Marshall as I have ever heard. However, I wanted it to be a little more crisp (like a Marshall DSL) but still have some bottom end to it. Opened it up and turned the trimpot to about mid way and Holy smokes!! Exactly what I wanted. It's amazing with the setup that I have but doesn't sound so good through my Line6 Spider 3 120watt but that is ok because the Line6 has a great distortion all by itself with the ESP EC loaded with EMG's. Don't spend $100+ on any distortion pedal until you have tried the Joyo. Please make sure you adjust the trimpot inside the pedal to find your sweet tone spot. It will work as boost or distortion pedal but your results will vary depending on your amp. Adjust the trimpot (presence adjustment) for the best results with your setup.
March 3, 2017
this sounds nice. It's similar sound to my amp's distortion but with a bit different EQ, which is a good thing as I like tube distortion not gainy grit. I try to run my power tubes hot (generally the EL84s on the Rebel) and just put a bit more breakup on top (if I want something different I throw on the fuzz). I never push the gain past noon as it gets plenty distorted by that point, and I prefer a little less gain nowadays (my death-metaller former self would never believe I'm saying this). When you do go higher than noon, it does get hissy. Below that it's adding noise of a different character than my amps gain channel, but no more or worse noise. Seems well made.
February 28, 2017
Most distortion pedals I own sound best with their volume knobs past 2 'clock, tone around noon and distortion 3' oclock. Not this one folks. At least not for me. The magic really happened for me when I dialed the presence pot back a little bit, turned the tone knob all the way up, volume around 9'oclock and gain way down around 7'oclock and MAGIC!! Excellent AC/DC type rhythm sounds (but it does have it's own thing too kind of) and outstanding lead tones when engaging the gain channel on my amp. Bump the volume on the pedal up a little if you want a volume boost for leads but make sure to compensate with the clean channel amp volume. I paid under 30 dollars for this pedal brand new and it's better than some of my pedals costing double or more. My only gripe with it is the audible "pop" it makes when engaging it but I am keeping my rating at 4 stars because it's going to be an "always on" pedal for me. So if you buy this pedal be sure to take the back cover off and adjust the presence pot to your liking. Me I liked it dialed back some, you may like it turned up some. As I said at first I thought this pedal sucked until I started to dial it in with some unusual settings. now it's going to be a mainstay on my board and will be my main rhythm crunch. I'm even going to buy another one as a backup. Great job on this one Joyo!!
By Tony Hills
February 26, 2017
Great distortion pedal. Really nails the Marshall sound. I initially thought it was a bit bright/harsh sounding, however for me the key to dialing in a great sound was adjusting the internal trimpot (presence). One review I read stated the trimpot was on the top side of the circuit board, however upon removing the bottom cover plate I was pleasantly surprised to find the trimpot on the bottom of the board, easily accessible and adjustable using a Phillips head screwdriver. The factory setting on mine was with presence all the way up. Rolling this back about halfway made a huge difference. For about $30 this is an awesome value...great addition to my stomp box collection!
February 10, 2017
I've loved almost all of them...not just because of the price ($40 to $50), but also because of their (apparent) durability and tone quality that would be appreciated at any price.* Extremely high output and high sustain * When I first plugged this thing in, I had it set up similar to any other distortion pedal I would try out with my Les Paul and VOX combo amp - with the dials all at 12 o'clock (50%). Big mistake. This pedal has an EXTREMELY high output. Depending on the Gain setting, I was achieving output parity with the clean signal with the Volume set at around 25%. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, and it's certainly better than having no headroom to set the pedal louder (a frequent criticism of the BOSS DS-1), but it's something to be aware of. Also, I read several comments here that this "isn't a high gain distortion". I couldn't disagree more. This thing has TONS of gain. I think people are thrown off by two things: (1) The name, which pays tribute to the MI Audio Crunchbox it clones; and (2) The clarity/transparency of the tone, particularly the higher-end range, that shines through at all Gain levels. "Crunch", in my mind, refers to a punchy, cleanish tone that has just a little bit of breakup in its character. The Crunch Distortion has a tone that doesn't really breakup or get "fizzy" as you turn up the Gain, but that's not what "Gain" really is. The Gain knob increases the saturation and sustain of the note(s), but I think people are fooled by the fact that the sound doesn't crack up. Hit a barre chord and see how long the note holds with the gain turned up. This actually makes the pedal very useful for lead work, also, which is one of the JF-03's strengths. * The setup is weird, but workable * Because of everything I described above, you may use some weird dial configurations to get the tone you want. My level is usually around 25% to 40%, and is still very loud. The "crunchy" classic rock tone that other reviewers talked about does exist, but only at around 5% to 15% of the gain setting. And I had the tone knob generally working from 9 o' clock to 12 o'clock, as it got a little too bright to go any higher. (Again, this is with Les Paul humbuckers.) Ultimately, what I decided was that this pedal has enough bass, not too much in the midrange, and very distinct high end frequencies that come through very clearly. If you play gigs and are having trouble cutting through the other instruments, I'd imagine this pedal would do the trick! * It's costs less than half of many of it's true "competitors" * While the affordability aspect is distinct from "quality", it cannot be ignored. Part of my initial disappointment was based on a side-by-side comparison with my MXR '78 Custom Badass Distortion. The latter did have a fuller sound to it, and was arguably better for rhythm work. But that's an $80 custom shop pedal from MXR. Try comparing this pedal to a $40 Boss DS-1 or MXR Distortion + and it blows them out of the water (in my opinion). I'm not sure want to roll with the Crunch Distortion being the only dirt box on my board, but if you used it with a specific purpose in mind (like a lead/gain boost), you could afford this and Joyo's excellent "Ultimate Drive" overdrive pedal for still less than most boutique or even BOSS distortion pedals go for. UPDATE - About a week into owning this pedal, I did revise this score from a 5* to a 4* rating. If you graded the pedal in a "vacuum", I could absolutely see a 5* rating for the $40 price tag. But ultimately, there are just a few more problems and quirks about this pedal that I haven't had with other Joyo products, so the score should reflect that. Please note also (which I didn't realize before) that the internal trim pot for "presence" is NOT easily accessible unless you are prepared to remove the circuit board and the three jacks that are connected to it. A distributor confirmed for me that this is necessary if you want to make the adjustment, and I have no interest in trying to take apart fragile components for a small change that might not even do anything.
January 27, 2017
The Dirty Little Secret is definitely an awesome pedal that absolutely sounded like adding a dirty Marshall preamp in front of the clean preamp and power amp in my Haze. However, the Joyo JF-03 won the battle for my pedal board. It is 92% as good as the Catalinbread for me in terms of tone, but at a fraction of the cost. I don't really gig anymore, so I can't speak to construction other than to say that it doesn't feel cheap. But if you're looking for Marshall crunch in a stomp box, save yourself a hundred bucks or more over some of the competition out there and try this.
January 23, 2017
I can't believe how cheap I got this great pedal for. Only a rich, pretentious player would find anything negative about this pedal. It's a pre - 80's Marshall in a box. No tone sucking, plays well with others, True Bypass and cleans up amazingly with your guitars volume knob. I can't speak for humbuckers because I play a Fender Strat. Built like a tank too. I highly recommend it if you want a fat, crisp and crunchy distortion that you can roll back for cleaner rhythm tube sounds. There's a boutique company charging way more for the same tones.You won't regret it!
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