• Buffalo FX Supa Driver review

    The classic sounds of the Power Boost has gotten a huge revival over the past decade and clones comes in many shapes and sizes. One of the newer to arrive is the Supa Driver from Buffalo FX. Here’s my review.

    The Power Boost was long a mystery among us Gilmour fans. At least in terms of what overdrive pedal he actually used on those classic 70s albums. The mystery is solved – read more about the Colorsound Power Boost here – and personally, the Power Boost has been one of my all time favourite guitar effects ever since I discovered it.

    David Gilmour used the Colorsound Power Boost for both boost and overdrive between 1972-79. It can be heard on all of the albums and tours from that era and the pedal, or its grey Overdriver counterpart, has even popped up from time to time in the studio in recent decades.

    The Supa Driver is basically a beefed up Power Boost, with the familiar tone and character of the original but with a lot more gain and just a hint of compression.

    In addition to controls for gain, volume, treble and bass, there’s also a pre-gain control, controlling the pre-amp with an additional silicon transistor. It adds to the gain and compression and allow you to finely tune the amount of gain and take the pedal into fuzz territory.

    I’ve always been a huge fan of Buffalo FX and the way that Steve manage to make well-known and sometimes over-cloned circuits and make them his own.

    Like his stock Power Booster, the Supa Driver deliver all the mojo and character of the original Power Boost, with some much welcomed improvements. The bass is focused and tight and the high end is slightly rolled off, allowing you to really crank the pedal, without getting that nasty ice-picky treble bleed.

    The addition of the pre-gain control makes this pedal perhaps more versatile than the stock model and I also like the fact that when you roll the pre-gain past noon, you can hear a bit of compression kicking in, allowing more sustain and an overall smoother tone.

    In the clip I’ve tried to cover as many different tones as possible with just this single pedal. From crunchy clean to fuzz. The Supa Driver also makes an excellent booster for your clean tones or, in combination with other dirt pedals.

    Read more about the Supa Driver at buffalofx.com

21 Responsesso far.

  1. karan singh says:

    Hey bjorn,
    Nice post i really like your review and the indeed information about Buffalo FX Supa Driver, and I have tried this pedal its performance is very High quality and the Sustain, Level, Bass & Treble controls all are outstanding.


    Hello Bjorn, would this pedal work well with a Big Muff, Gibson ES335 and Fender Princeton Reverb?

    • Bjorn says:

      Depends on what tones you want. For David’s tones, like Cigar or Pigs, I’d use a pedal with more compression and mid range to compensate for these lacking features in the Princeton.

  3. Branko says:

    Hi Bjorn,

    What would you choose for DG tones, HSS strat or a normal tele?

  4. KEITH says:

    Hey Bjorn, I actually really liked this pedal, but have a feeling because of the use of the name Supa, that this circuit is partly based on the old Shin-ei, vox, univox, etc Supa-Fuzz, and Rangemaster pedals, many of which had 3 transistors. I’m sure you know if I’m right or wrong, but unless he just liked the name, I can’t see why he’d use Supa in the name of a pedal that is pretty high gain! So, maybe it’s a cross between a power boost, and a Supa Fuzz? Either way, great clip, lovely playing, and I left a question for you in pt 2 of DG’s Delay, Run like Hell about Binson head selection, but it’s sat for a bit. Could you take a look at it for me?
    Thanks for another great clip in the vault, KEITH

    • Bjorn says:

      Just replied to your Binson question. Sorry for the delay… pun intended :)
      I have no idea why Steve decided to call it Supa. Yes, it has some similarities with the Supa Fuzz but my guessing is that he used Supa as it’s a beefed up Power Booster and although a bit misleading perhaps, using Supa was a way of describing that. I might be wrong. Anyway, I love the pedal!

  5. Bish says:

    Great Review as always! Have you had a chance to try any of the Tru-fi Colordrivers, either the 9V or 18V versions?

  6. be cool if he started cloning some other stuff, sounds just like vicks which is less, but thats just my two pennies

  7. Branko says:

    Hey Bjorn! Cool review. Ypur opinion on tele vs strat? Which one do you prefer? And how good is telecaster for DG strat tones?

    • Bjorn says:

      Doesn’t matter if you’re a Strat guy if a Tele or Les Paul is what you need for a specific song or part. As your main guitar I would say that it’s down to preference. A Tele would do nicely for David’s tones. Both for the songs recorded and performed on a Tele but also for the typical Strat songs. I recommend that you try both, and different models of each, and decide.

  8. fab says:

    Hi Bjorn,

    Thanks for the review! As much as I love Buffalo pedals, I’m not convinced by this one. It sounds good but a bit dull, not enough “Gilmourish” to my ears, I wonder what other fans think about it.

    • Bjorn says:

      Well, I definitely don’t think it sounds dull but the fact that it has more compression might make it sound less vintage and raw. It could be my inability to record it properly too.

    • Brian Deren says:

      You know, I think I know what you’re saying, it doesn’t have that “bite” that I love so much from the original, Im sure thats what Bjorn means by raw,I thought the pedal pairings were more “exciting” or interesting with the original as well but then I thought it sounds sooo freaking smooth and beautiful and yes slightly, yet perfectly compressed as if this was the “Festival” sound you’d want versus the tear your head off with the razor sharp leads I love a rock show lol…problem is now I want this one as well as the Electric Banana (first)…love this site

  9. Al says:

    Hi Bjorn, great ad-lib of ‘Time’. How would the Supa Driver pair up to running through a clean Fender amp?

    • Bjorn says:

      Depends on the Fender model but in general I would say that I’d rather choose something with a bit more mid range. Fender amps has a typical scooped mid range and the Supa Driver lack the mids too so you’ll end up with a very thin and sometimes too bright tone. You can definitely tweak your way around that and compensate to some extent but it wouldn’t be the same as using these scooped overdrives with a Marshall or Hiwatt.

  10. Samuel says:

    Hello Bjorn, did you try the new big muff rams head reissue? Do you recommend it? Regards.

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