Choosing the right overdrive for your amp can be tricky. The wrong pedal with the wrong amp can sound pretty shitty. However, if you do hit the spot, nothing sounds better. Bulgarian pedal makers, SviSound, recently released the OverZoid+, which promise to deliver anything from clean boost to fuzz. This review will also cover their Optical Phaser mini pedal.
I did a review of the OverZoid about a year ago. It was my first encounter with SviSound and I was very impressed. They’re pedals looks amazing! It’s a work of art – both the insides and the exterior design.
Both the OverZoid+ and the Optical Phaser are beautifully designed and, although design certainly isn’t crucial for the pedal’s tone, it sure is cool to have something like this on the board. It’s not all for show though. They’re extremely well built with high quality components.
The OverZoid + is the new beefed up version of the OverZoid. While the standard edition feature three controls for gain, tone and volume, the OZ+ has a second gain stage for boost, switchable mostfet or germanium modes and a bass boost.
As the OverZoid, and most of the SviSound pedals, the OZ+ has a lot of mid range and compression. There’s plenty of headroom here, allowing a nice clean, and fairly transparent, boost but the overall tone and character is close to the 808/Klon family of pedals.
On a Marshall or Hiwatt, this might be a bit overwhelming but as we discussed in the “Knowing which Pedals to Choose for your Amp” feature, amps that doesn’t have that mid range and compression, needs pedals that can compensate for the lack of it and make the amp sound bigger and fuller, especially on lower volume levels and in a typical bedroom setup.
As mentioned, the OZ+ is capable of providing a nice clean boost. Single coils and brighter amps, sound warmer and more chunky. There’s a lot of volume on tap here so you can easily boost the front end of your tube amp as well, for a natural tube break up.
Switching between the mostfet and germanium stages reveals the versatility of the OZ+. The Mosfet is obviously more modern sounding, smoother and warmer. I prefer this for that clean boost and the milder overdrive tones. Increase the gain and you’re very close to a Tube Driver and OCD.
The germanium stage takes the OZ+ closer to the classic DOD 250 and MXR Distortion+, with a more 70s sounding character, rich dynamics and a crisp attack. For high gain tones, and the boost engaged, you can easily reach some really awesome fuzz tones, with some amazing sustain.
Like the standard OZ, the OZ+ also feature a switchable bass boost, which is handy for smaller amps and low output pickups or, if you just want more of that low end growl.
The OverZoid+ is highly recommended if you’re in for a versatile overdrive work station for your Fender amps and bedroom setups.
The Optical Phaser, from SviSound’s Techno range, is based on both the classic 4-stage Phase 90 and the 2-stage Phase 45.
In addition to the familiar speed control, or frequency as its called here, the pedal feature controls for range (controlling the width of the sweep), depth (amount of effect) and brightness (boosting the high end frequencies for more presence and clarity). There’s also switches for choosing either 4-stage or 2-stage phasing.
The 4-stage is very close to the classic Phase 90. You got that warm, chunky analog phasing that’s spot on David Gilmour’s Wish You Were Here tones and of course all the other greats that have used it.
I have always been a fan of the 2-stage Phase 45. It’s really one of the underrated pedals that should have gotten more praise and attention. The subtle phasing, almost Uni-Vibe-ish, adds a warm and subtle modulation to your tones, making overdrives in particular, more alive and dynamic.
The Optical Phaser does a great job replicating both phasers and with the additional controls, this is probably the most versatile phaser on the market.
See SviSound.com for more.