Budget pedals

Tracking down affordable good sounding pedals used to be a real challenge but that’s certainly not the case anymore. Most of what you find these days within the budget range offer great sounds and high quality. In this feature we’ll look at some of my favourite budget pedals, with David Gilmour’s tones in mind.

It’s not that long ago that you had to pay serious money for good tone. Now you often see high profiled guitarists favouring cheap gear over having to take all of their priced items on the road.

They also know that even a $80 pedal will provide the tones they need. Let’s just put the whole debate to rest. Price or origin doesn’t say anything about quality or tone. It’s a new era and even though there are many good reasons for supporting local jobs and small entrepeneurs (yes, low scale production gear made in high cost countries, will cost more), from a guitarist’s standpoint, the options are limitless.

What pedals should you choose?

Having David Gilmour’s tones in mind (or any other for that matter), I would start with a small handful of the very basics: distortion/fuzz for the solos, overdrive for rhythms and the more mellow stuff and a delay. Don’t worry about compressors, EQs or modulation at this point. They’re a big part of David’s tone but not crucial.

What’s important is that you get pedals that goes well with your amp. A Big Muff won’t sound like it’s cranked on a huge stadium if your amp is a small Vox or Fender. For those amps, a pedal with more mid range and compression, like a Rat or OCD (or a cheaper clone as listed below) will be a much better match. Read more about how to choose the right pedals for your amp here.

Equally important is that you get to know the gear you have. A tight budget shouldn’t limit your quest for great tones. There is no reason why you can’t have killer tones on even the cheapest gear if you know what to combine and how to use it. Read more about how to get great tones on your bedroom setup here.

Pedals or multi effects?

Obviously, rather than building a pedalboard with single pedals, you could go for a single multi processor. There are lots of different models on the market in all shapes and sizes. Most of them, regardless size and price, sound really good. With a bit of tweaking you can set up some really nice tones and maybe that’s all you need. Some amps also come with built in effects.

Keep in mind though that these processors are not designed with your amp, guitar or specific preferences in mind. Although most of them include a vast collection of sounds, they will never cover all of your needs. At least not as well as handpicking single pedals.

All pedals listed below were tested on typical Gilmour inspired setups, including Stratocasters and Hiwatt and Fender amps. Please note that the pedals may sound and behave differently on your setup. I’ve set $100 as the maximum price.


Mooer Yellow Comp
Mooer Yellow CompBased on the Diamond Compressor, the Mooer Yellow has the qualities of those classic optical units for a fraction of the price. Transparent tone, super smooth attack and, like the original, an onboard EQ allowing you to fine tune the tone after the compression. Works equally well with single coils and humbuckers, clean tones and gain.

Gilmour tones: Animals to present

MXR Dyna Comp Mini
Buyer's Gear Guide - MXR Dynacomp MiniThe new mini-sized Dyna Comp offer the same classic transparent tones as the original, with a switch for fast or slow attack. Compared to an optical model, the Dyna Comp has a more noticeable compression, which is particularly suitable for single coils and clean tones, although it works nicely in combination with dirtier pedals as well.

Gilmour tones: Animals/DG78/Wall/Final Cut

Fuzz and Big Muff

Electro Harmonix Green Russian
Buyer's Gear Guide - EHX Green RussianThe Green Russian is a faithful reissue of the early 90s Sovtek Big Muffs and the Civil War and green models in particular. Like the originals, the Green Russian has a fat low end, a hint of mid range and fairly moderate gain. Of all the Big Muffs, this is probably the most versatile for most amps and Electro Harmonix has done an impressive job recreating the tone in a smaller footprint. Regardless of the budget or price, this is easily one of the best Muffs on the market today.

Gilmour tones: Division Bell/Pulse/Rattle That Lock

Mooer Triangle Buff
The Triangle Buff is based on the early version of the Big Muff, with a distinctly mids scooped tone, massive low end and moderate gain. It needs a booster or EQ to really open up but it’s a versatile Muff and Mooer has done a great job with replicating the classic model. Although David rarely used the triangle, it can easily double for his Ram’s Head and Sovtek Muff tones.

Gilmour tones: Animals/DG78/Wall/Final Cut/Gdansk/Rattle That Lock

Custom Pedal Boards Muff War
Buyer's Gear Guide - CPB Muff WarThe Muff War is based on the first generation Sovtek Big Muffs, the so-called Civil War model, from the early 90s. This was David Gilmour’s main Big Muff unit during the 1994 Division Bell/Pulse era and again during the recent Rattle That Lock tour. Like the EHX Green Russian, the Muff War goes a long way in replicating those huge tones, with a fat low end and a hint of mid range. Looking for mini pedals? This is possibly the best mini Muff out there!

Gilmour tones: Delicate/PULSE/Rattle That Lock

Dunlop FFM1 Silicon Fuzz Face Mini
Buyer's Gear Guide - Dunlop Fuzz Face Mini blueThe blue mini version of the Fuzz Face feature the same BC108 transistors David favoured during the Live at Pompeii/Dark Side of the Moon era. It’s got all the gain, harmonics and sustain as heard on songs like Time and Money. Silicon transistor fuzz can easily double for a Big Muff, especially with a booster behind it. Do check out the grey mini FFM3 as well!

Gilmour tones: Pompeii/Obscured/DSotM

Mooer Grey Face Fuzz
Buyer's Gear Guide - Mooer Grey FaceLike Hendrix, David used the red Fuzz Face with germanium transistors in the early days of Pink Floyd. This model is known for its warm overdrive-like fuzz that cleans up nicely when you roll back the guitar volume and the Mooer does an impressive job replicating the qualities of the original late 60s model. Good sounding germanium fuzz is hard to come by in the budget range so this one is well worth checking out.

Gilmour tones: SoS/Ummagumma/More/Atom/Meddle

Distortion, overdrive and boost

Custom Pedal Boards Mini Driver
Buyer's Gear Guide - CPB Mini DriverThe Mini Driver is a versatile booster featuring controls for volume and gain. Use it as a transparent volume booster or, add a bit of dirt for tube-like compression and grit much like the EP preamp. The Mini Driver can either be used to boost other pedals, drive your tube amp or as a stand alone mild overdrive. Excellent alternative to the Colorsound Powerboost or for simply adding a bit of life and sparkle to your tones.

Gilmour tones: all eras

Boss BD-2 Blues Driver

Capable of producing anything from clean boost to near fuzz, the BD2 is an incredibly versatile pedal that works equally well on larger amps and typical bedroom setups. Its transparent tone makes it a great alternative for David Gilmour’s 70s Colorsound Powerboost and the more recent Tube Driver. Use it as a stand alone overdrive or as a booster in combo with an overdrive, fuzz or distortion. Regardless of your budget, the BD2 is hard to beat.

Gilmour tones: all eras

Electro Harmonix Crayon
Buyer's Gear Guide - EHX CrayonThe Crayon is a versatile full range overdrive very similar to the Tube Driver. Like the Tube Driver, the Crayon can deliver anything from clean boost to tube-like overdrive and distortion and its two EQ controls allow you to shape the tone to any amp. The Crayon can also be tweaked for more vintage tones similar to the Colorsound Powerboost that David Gilmour used during the mid 70s. Dont’ get fooled by the two designs. The circuits are identical!

Gilmour tones: all eras (Tube Driver especially)

Electro Harmonix Glove
Buyer's Gear Guide - EHX GloveAn excellent version of the popular and versatile Fulltone OCD. The Glove offer the same huge tones, with a distinct tube-like character, fat lows and a smooth mid range that will match any amp. The Glove has enough gain on tap to serve either as an overdrive or distortion and it’s an excellent alternative to David’s more recent Tube Driver tones.

Gilmour tones: Division Bell to present

Mooer Black Secret

Buyer's Gear Guide - Mooer Black SecretThe Black Secret is an excellent version of the classic Rat distortion. It even feature the legedary LM308 chip for those super smooth tones! Its compressed and midrangy character makes a perfect match for any amp and smaller bedroom setups in particular, where the more demanding fuzz and Muffs can be a challenge.

Gilmour tones: Delicate/PULSE

Boss DS-1 Distortion
Buyer's Gear Guide - Boss DS-1The Boss DS-1 might not seem like an obvious choice for your Gilmour tones but add a bit of chorus and delay and you’re pretty close to David’s 80s and 90s tones. There’s plenty of gain on tap but rolling it off a bit turns the DS-1 into a convincing overdrive too, with a smooth amp-like character.

Gilmour tones: Delicate/PULSE


Mooer Ensemble King
Based on the legendary Boss CE-2 that David used throughout the 80s and 90s, the Ensemble King deliver warm analog chorus based around the same MN3007 chip as featured in the original. The pedal is perhaps a tad darker than the CE-2 but an onboard effect volume/mix control allows you to dial in just the amount of chorus you need. An excellent alternative to the much sought after CE-2.

Gilmour tones: About Face/Momentary/Delicate/Divison Bell/PULSE

Mooer E-Lady
The E-Lady sounds like a cross between the late 70s 9-18V and the later big box Deluxe Mistress. Not as liquidy as the original but a bit more open sounding and a tad brighter than the Deluxe. The control knobs can be challenging to dial in properly but once you find the sweetspot, this thing will be hard to tell apart from the real deal. Spot on David’s late 70s tones and I even retired my beloved 1999 Deluxe in favour for this one!

Gilmour tones: Animals/DG78/Animals/Wall/Final Cut/Rattle

Mooer Ninety Orange
The Ninety Orange is a great sounding clone of the MXR Phase 90, with that classic creamy swirl. A small switch allow you to select either the original “script” model or the slightly more aggressive sounding 80s “block” version. David featured the Phase 90 on the WYWH album and the pedal can also be used as a convincing rotary effect on songs like Any Colour You Like.

Gilmour tones: DSotM/WYWH


TC Electronic Flashback Mini
Buyer's Gear Guide - TC Flashback MiniThis is easily one of the best delays you can buy regardless of what budget you have. The Mini offer a basic exterior but the Tone Print feature allows you to beam in pretty much any type of digital delay, echo or tape simulation you could think of. Like its bigger counterparts, the Mini offer studio quality tones in an impressive footprint.

Gilmour tones: all eras

Electro Harmonix Memory Toy
Buyer's Gear Guide - EHX Memory BoyLike the legendary Memory Man, the Memory Toy deliver warm analog delay tones in a much smaller footprint. The delay ranges from 30-550ms and with the feedback all the way up it will self-oscillate like those old analog units. There’s also a toggle switch for adding a bit of tape warble, with an internal trim pot for adjusting the depth of the modulation.

Gilmour tones: SoS/Ummagumma/More/Atom/Meddle/Obscured/Pompeii/DSotM/WYWH

131 Responsesso far.

  1. Bob Ferdman says:

    Hi Bjorn,

    Thanks for your expertise. I typically play more straight blues and classic rock (Beatles, Grateful Dead) but am looking to add to my board to get more of a Gilmour sound out of my rig. I currently have the following pedals on my board: an EXH Soul Food (overdrive), Mini Tube Screamer (overdrive), JHS Bender Fuzz (London 1973 Fuzz) and an EHX Q-Tron. What would you suggest I add next? Phaser or Delay? Would a Univibe accomplish both in one pedal?

    Thank you.

    • Bjorn says:

      Deley and echo is essential for David’s tones. He’s using that all the time to add texture and specific effects. You can pretty much use any delay but you might want to have an analog style for the 60s and 70s stuff and a digital for The Wall to present. Either two single units or a multi unit. As for modulation, you might want to look into an Electric Mistress Flanger, like the Flanger from Retro Sonic or the E-Lady from Mooer. Both nails David’s Animals, Wall and Final Cut sounds. The UniVibe was used for Breathe and Time but little else so if you want something more versatile, then check out a 4-stage phaser, like the MXR Phase 90 script model. It can also nail the UniVibe tones.

  2. Derek says:


    I’m using a 5W single-ended amp of my own design similar to Tweed Champ but with modifications through a Celestion G10N-40. It has a drive control which limits the signal hitting the EL84 so I have a good range of cleaner tones for such a small amp and when pushed slightly, it has a definite midrange growl.

    I’m trying to decide on either the Vick Audio Overdriver or EHX Crayon for Power Boost tones. I plan on using it in conjunction with my DIY Violet Ram’s Head Muff.

  3. Rob says:

    Hey, I’m pretty new to guitar and all these pedal names make me nervous. I was wondering which pedal is best for the first solo on shine on you crazy diamond, not really the infamous 4 notes part:) I know I should probably be able too tell from all the information on your site but unfortunately I do not yet.

  4. Paul Adelerhof says:

    Hello there Bjorn, from the lovely country side in the Netherlands i would like tho compliment you on your great archives of tonal gilmour bliss. I have a question. I have a fearly nice pedal board running an american and a japanese strat (the last one with the same pickups ass the signature model, ssl and stuff)with the gilmour mod. My pedals are: Blues driver, turbo distortion Boss super chorus, eno tremolo, vortex flanger (with the electrric mistress toneprint) and a flashback mini delay. I am trying to replicate the wall sounds and Money. I know i need a fuzz, but which one…. or is this something i could replicate by using my excisting pedals? I have tried the rams head fuzz, but through the fender… it doesnt sound very good. Can you help me on my quest?

    thanks very much and keep up giving us advice on your site and youtube. I can learn a lot from you!!!

    Cheers, Paul

  5. Robin says:

    Hi Björn!

    I’ve been following Gilmourish for many years and I’m always impressed by your knowledge of pedals and the sound of David Gilmour! Thank you very much for sharing your knowledge with us!

    I am looking for the sound of the Fender Strat Pack and Gdansk concert. I was so inspired by the Marooned version that I wanted to have exactly that sound. Unfortunately I can’t get it right.

    I’m trying to ask you for a small suggestion for improvement.

    I am currently playing with a Bassbreaker 15 with a Mexico Fender Standard Strat, Demeter Compulator, BD-2, Big Muff and a Flashback Delay. I also have a Fender Fiesta Red with Hank Marvin’s Kingman’s PU.

    What would be the first thing you would want to change in the equipment if you were me? Or is there something to change?

    Thanks a lot for your advice!!!

    Many greetings from Germany,


    • Bjorn says:

      I think you should be able to get close with the gear you have. David used a Hiwatt, with some compression, a Tube Driver, digital delay and the Whammy for that performance. Set the amp clean but with a bit of the preamp pushing the tubes. Increase the mid range and keep the treble fairly low. I’d use your Compulator, BD2 and delay for the effects.

  6. Shane Miller says:

    Hello from Utah, USA! My wife and I appreciate your ear. And we dig Airbag!
    Wanted to know if you see any issues with our setup, chain, or if you recommend adding anything…
    MIM Strat with Tex-Mex pickups
    Boss Tuner
    Mooer Yellow Comp
    Vick Audio 73 Ram’s Head
    Boss Blues Driver BD-2
    Mooer Black Secret
    MXR Custom Shop Phase 45
    Boss Super Chorus CH-1
    Boss DD3
    Fender Blues Jr
    We bought all this on your reviews mostly.
    Thank you!

    • Bjorn says:

      Thanks for the kind words Shane! Your setup looks great! Depends on what tones you’re looking for I guess. My experience is that the Blues Jr and Fender amps in general doesn’t go that well with Big Muff, although the Vick has a mid range booster. I’d set that to either flat or boost. You can also use the BD2 in combo with the Vick to compensate for some of the mid range and compression. Good luck!

      • Shane Miller says:

        Thank you for taking the time and effort to reply to me. That means a lot! Thank you! I would be lost without you.
        I have added a Dunlop Mini Volume Petel,
        tc electronic flashback, and a Mooer e-lady, and a tc spark booster. I am finally getting the tones I want!
        I think I am done with petels.
        All thanks to you and your wealth of advice.

  7. Giulio says:

    Hello Bjorn! Can you tell me the difference between the two Mooer ElecLady (E-Lady) and the (newer?) Jet Engine? Those guys have the worst costumer service, they never reply. Thanks and keep up the good work!

  8. grendel20002001 says:


    What an AMAZING resource your sight is – THANK YOU!

    I’ve recently jumped into playing electric guitar and am chasing the “Gilmour Tones” of the Pulse era on a tight budget. I currently own no pedals at all and have purchased a Fender Strat (upgraded to CS ’69 pickups based on your recommendation) running through a Vox VT40X modeling amp (12AX7 preamp tube – NO effects loop). I’m strictly a bedroom player / jam with friends guy for the foreseeable future. I also purchased the ToneStack app for my iPad to play with various effects (run using and iRig HD2 interface).

    My question is this: given a budget of $200, what pedals would you purchase to get close to David’s “Pulse” tones?

    My amp has some built in effects that seem decent, but I’d prefer better quality hardware versions where possible (but I’m not opposed to using the built in effects where needed – particularly reverb and maybe delay – or not if you have strong thoughts in that regard).

    I was leaning toward the following (based on your budget recommendations):

    – Mooer yellow comp ($60)
    – Crayon 69 ($72)
    – Mooer Grey Faze (68)

    Finally, are any of the cheaper Donner pedals worth considering (“Stylish Fuzz” in particular at $30 is intriguing)?

    Thanks for your time and expertise!!!

    • Bjorn says:

      Hi! Thanks for your kind words! Sorry for my late reply.
      Why a compressor? There are lots of pedals that you might want to consider first IMO. Do you intend to get modulation pedals and/or a delay too?

      • grendel20002001 says:

        Bjorn, thanks for the reply!

        Why a compressor? Well I had assumed from my reading here that a compressor was needed to “sound like Gilmour” (to achieve the necessary sustain in this case?)… Again – I’m pretty new to this and since I own no pedals (and have zero experience with them directly) I was sort of hoping you could prioritize their usefulness / their degree of “gotta have it” to achieve the Gilmour sound.

        I had assumed there was a possibility of using the delay and/or reverb effects that are built into the amp if needed (at least temporarily) to prioritize “more important” pedals that aren’t built in?

        And as far as purchasing other modulation pedals (chorus, etc. I assume?) well, yes, I will in time assuming they are part of his “Pulse” sounds. I’m just not sure which are most useful / critical.

        That was my intended question: since I cannot currently afford to simply buy them all right now, what approach makes sense to you? Since I have a “clean slate” should I buy several cheap pedals to cover all of the bases or is there a pedal (or pedals) that justify buying fewer / more expensive one(s) right now and saving to buy the others that are needed later on.

        I really have no way to just the relative quality of the budget pedals vs their more expensive boutique alternatives, and I have NO ability at this point to know which pedal types (compressor, OD, etc.) would be “more useful” on its own in a bedroom environment until I could save up for the rest of them.

        Hope that makes sense – thanks again!

        • Bjorn says:

          I don’t consider a compressor a must have for Gilmour’s tones or any tone. A compressor, like an EQ, is a tool rather than an effect, to enhance a tone that’s already there but perhaps need a few tweaks. You should get enough sustain from your amp and guitar alone, based on the amp settings and your playing technique.

          I recommend running the amp clean and use pedals to achieve at least overdrive and distortion. Based on this, I consider three pedals to be basics for David’s tones: distortion for leads and heavier stuff, overdrives for rhythms and the more bluesy solos and a delay. Everything else is pretty much frosting on the cake.

          • Bjorn – here’s a belated update and a question: I finally got around to buying a few pedals during the Black Friday sales over the last few days. I got a Fulltone 69 for Fuzz and a EHC Crayon for boost (and potentially OD).

            Since the literature for both of these pedals say they clean up well when the guitar volume is rolled off, I wanted to hear your thoughts on the correct sequencing of the pedals. I assume it will be better to put the 69 first as you’ve indicated that Fuzz can have issues if other pedals come before it. Is that a proper assumption?

            I think I’ll be using the Crayon as a neutral boost rather than as an OD. I’ll likely use the bass and treble controls to tweak my tone as well, but I wonder if you think I should keep the gain on it low / off and get something else down the line for distortion?

            I plan to buy a TC Electronic Flashback mini or Flashback 2 somewhere down the line and perhaps a Mooer Grey Lady as well..

            Thanks for all your sage advice!

            • Bjorn says:

              Yes, I’d keep the fuzz first. For it to clean up properly, it needs to be next in line from the pickups.
              I usually have boost pedals set clean or almost clean depening on how hot the fuzz or distortion pedal is. The Crayon is an excellent booster, with a hint of mids.

  9. Evan Steidtman says:

    Hey Bjorn!

    What would be the best fuzz and phaser that would compliment each other well for a ‘Have a Cigar’ or ‘Money’ tone.



    • Bjorn says:

      Depends on your guitar, pickups and amp. Impossible to say without knowing that. If you have the exact same setup as David, I would say a Colorsound Power Boost and a script MXR Phase 90 for Cigar and a BC108 fuzz for Money, which is what he used.

  10. Elias Samson says:

    Hello Bjorn.

    I am an avid viewer of your channel on YouTube and your guide to getting the Gilmour tone has helped me a lot. I am currently using an Ibanez GRX 70 with a Roland Micro Cube GX. I know that’s no way gonna get a Gilmour tone, but I’m kind of into both Gilmour and something like a Doom or Thrash Metal tone. The Roland Amp gives me a great versatile tone for this. I’m looking forward to get the Boss DS-1 pedal and I even watched your video on YouTube based on this pedal, and in that video you mentioned that it sounds great with a Marshall amp which is kind of a bummer for me right now as I am not sure whether this pedal will go well with the Roland Micro Cube. I also got my eyes on the Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive Pedal but again I am baffled when it comes to compatibility with my Roland. If you think both these pedals would not go well with the Roland then pls pls suggest a pedal for me that would give me a decent Gilmour tone with fairly low gain but also give a decent, somewhat metal tone or any one of them. I am looking forward to boss pedals only. I am also completely fine with just having a tasty metal tone with metalzone or a DS-1 and I’m also fine with a smooth Gilmour Tone on an SD-1 or an OD-3. I just want to know one thing from you and that is which boss pedal will go well with my Roland.
    Thank you.

    • Bjorn says:

      Thanks for the kind words, Elias! I haven’t tried the Cube with Boss pedals in particular but with some tweaking on both the amp and pedals, the amp works pretty well with most pedals. As with all Boss overdrives and distortions, you really need to be careful with the treble and tone control. In most cases you just need to roll it back all the way. The DS1 is a very versatile pedal for anything between creamy overdrive to pretty heavy stuff. The SD1 is more a Tube Screamer style pedal and the two compliments each other very well. You might also want to check out the BD2 for some warmer overdrive tones.

      • Elias Samson says:

        Thank you so much for the reply Bjorn, and for suggesting the BD-2. the main problem with my amp (Roland Micro Cube GX) is that it has no treble, bass or a middle knob but just gain, master, vol, and tone. So should I roll the tone knob all the way down in both the DS-1 and the Roland?

        • Bjorn says:

          I think you should start by setting up the amp. Find a tone that sound great with just the guitar and add the pedal ontop of that. I’m sure you need to roll back on the pedal but hear how that sound on the amp.

        • Shebil says:

          Try the JC Clean channel. It should work the best. Also the Blackface amp setting should be good.

  11. Alex says:

    Hi Bjorn,

    I’m looking to get a delay pedal, and I’m a total novice when it comes to delay. I think the Boss DD-3 should work well for my application, but I keep seeing the TC Flashback 2 or Mini Flashback recommended, and I don’t know how they compare. I know the Flashback offers more features, but I’m not sure that I need anything beyond what the DD-3 offers – usually just a long 500ms delay, and sometimes a shorter 100ms delay. All the features of the Flashback 2, like the 8 different delay settings, seems a bit overwhelming.

    Given that, should I just get the DD-3 since I think it should work, or could I accomplish that easily enough with the Flashback 2 or Mini and have extra features should I want them in the future?


    • Bjorn says:

      The DD3 is a classic and it will cover most of your needs. The Flashback has more features and you’ll be able to more accurately cover the classic Binson sounds and the more modern digital stuff. Depends on what features you need.

  12. Samuel says:

    Hello Bjorn, first of all I want to thank you these posts. I have several questions related to budget pedals. I´ve heard that the Black Secret (Moer) is an amazing rat clone (and very cheap). My question is if it is worth paying 184 € for the Rattler (Jam) or the Black Secret has a realistic classic rat sound. And little bear R. attack? People say that it is even better.
    I have a similar question with the reissue Green Russian (ehx) and the hoof (Earthquaker). It is supposed that boutique pedals have better sound and use high quality components (sometimes even improving the original pedal).


    • Bjorn says:

      Thanks for the kind words! The Black Secret is great and I’d have no problem using it for stage or recording. Still, the Rattler is hard to beat. They did an amazing job on that one. A bit more open sounding and the low end is nicely balanced, whereas the typical rat and clones can often sound a bit flat. Teh EHX Green Russian is probably as close as you’ll get to the original early 90s Sovtek pedals. No reason to buy a clone if you’re looking for THAT tone.

  13. Silvio says:

    Hi Bjorn. I wanted to ask you what you think of the boss bd-2 waza craft. Many argue that waza kraft is better than Keeley, warmer and more transparent and with more manageable bass. I am attaching a video where you can listen to both. Greetings.


  14. Mark says:

    Hi Bjorn, Thanks for such an informative website. A quick question, I have a solid state small amp (yamaha thr10c) as a fender champion 600. I want to get reasonably close to the comfortably numb solo tone. I have a boss blues driver bd2, a mooer eleclady and an El Capistan delay. Reading your advice I have ordered Rat clone rather than a Muff (as you stated it was better for home volumes).

    I’m sure I remember a video (or an article) with advice on using the Rat and the BD2 stacked together but I cannot find it anywhere. 

    Do I run the Rat into the BD2 or the BD2 into the Rat? What settings approximately should I use on them as a starting point? I know I’m not going to recreate it closely with this set up but I’d like to get in the right area. Any advice at all would be really appreciated. 



    • Bjorn says:

      Sorry for my very late reply. The Rat is often best used alone I think but you can stack it with other gain pedals. I’d place the BD2 after the Rat. Set it fairly clean and allow it to add more character and tone rather than more gain.

  15. Tom says:

    Hi Bjorn, is there any kind of rotary sim pedal that would emulate the RA200? (the RT20 is very rare and expensive in my country) I was taking a look at the Danelectro Big Spender which is a Leslie emulator, do you think it could get close? Cheers

    • Bjorn says:

      The Big Spender sounds surprisingly good considering its price point and the complexity of the circuit. It’s definitely worth checking out although it does not have an effects volume control. Only a master. That means that you won’t be able to mix the rotary in with your dry signal like David does.

  16. KnotsKnox says:

    Hey Bjorn,
    Just found your website and I’m loving the articles. Very informative and straight forward. I’m very new to pedals and have been obsessed with the David Gilmour tone. I wanted a little input on what pedal you think I should purchase next to get closest to the Wish you Were Here tone– particularly the Shine on you Crazy Diamond sound. But I think I may delve into the other Gilmour eras. So I’m looking for versatility on a budget as well.

    Here’s my set up:

    Amp: Fender Blues Jr III

    Overdrive: Boss BD2, I also have a tube screamer like pedal

    Phaser: MXR 90

    I’m thinking about getting a cheap delay pedal like the ones you suggested (Mini Flashback), but totally unsure. Not sure if I’m dialing in my tone incorrectly but I can’t get that screaming overdriven tone Gilmour has at the end of the second solo and beginning of the third solo where he switches to the bridge pickup. Any input would be great. Thanks so much Bjorn. Also, do you have a donation page? I’d love to donate to show appreciation for the work you’ve put into this site.

  17. Mike Alex says:

    Bjorn, what do you think about the MXR M104 Distortion + budget pedal for Gilmour tone? In the middle ranges of the Output and Distortion controls, you’ll find soft-clipped distortion tones that sound truly retro-authentic, especially when they’re mixed with a splash of reverb. Pushing Distortion up higher produces classic fuzz tones.
    MXR M104 pedal for Mids Boosted or Mids Scooped amps?

    • Bjorn says:

      I love the D+ but it’s designed for mid rangy amps and to be added on top of a bit of amp dirt. You can definitely get som really great fuzz tones with it. Doesn’t do much on a clean Fender.

  18. Hello everyone! I want to share my experience with you.

    I wanted a rig to play Gilmour tones but would be flexible to play other styles to. This can be a challenge! Follow the Bjorn tips, I blend expensive and cheap pedals. I play in my bedroom and I’m very satisfied with the results. Thanks Bjorn for your tips! This is my current rig:

    – Guitars: Fender MIM Standard Stratocaster and Epiphone G-400 Pro (both with original pickups);

    – Amp: Laney TI-15 112 (I use only it to play some vintage sounds);

    – Cables: Tecniforte;

    – Pedals – INPUT: MXR Dyna Comp Mini > EHX Green Russian Big Muff > EHX Crayon > Mooer Black Secret > Mooer Solo > Mooer Ensemble King > Mooer Ninety Orange > Mooer Elec Lady – LOOP: TC Eletronics Flashback > TC Eletronics Hall of Fame > Boss RC-3.

    I believe it is a excelente alternative between quality and cost. Also, I can get Gilmour tones and sounds from Blues to Heavy. Hope this helps!

  19. Rotem Shoshani says:

    Hi Bjorn! I aant to buy a delay pedal, but im not sure wether i should get the mini TC Flashback, or the EHX Memory Toy .I know both are good, and Im under the impression that the mini FB is better for gilmour tones(mainly because of your articles),and that the MT doesn’t sound like Gilmour because of “reduced headroom”. However, I prefer to have an analog delay like the MT, because Ive heard that digital delay dont sound as good, and that they are “cold” compared to analog delays. Im currently lost between the two and I was joping you could help me out. Which one should iI get? Or are there any other ones I could get? Im looking for more budget delays, in the 150$ range.
    Thank you for the time you put into this site and I wish you the best of luck.

  20. please do a review of the biyang fz-10, its meant to be a up there with boutique muff but only cost £25

  21. Paulo Madeira says:

    Hello Bjorn.
    do you feel a drop volume when you use the e-lady?
    I have this problem …
    What do you recommend to solve this problem? I thought of a clean boost after the e-lady to compensate for the loss of volume … but as I only play at home and at low volumes I’m not sure which boost to choose … considering that I only want to compensate for the lost volume. in your opinion, which boost serves this purpose?
    thank you.

    • Bjorn says:

      I haven’t noticed a drop to be honest. Mine sounds fairly neutral volumewise but then again I usually play very loud. It might be perceived as lower in volume because of the high end roll off… ? There are a number of way to boost, like a clean booster or to have the pedal in a loop with a volume booster or mixer like David did with the Lehle mixer on the latest tour.

    • Hello Paulo. I play at home and this happens to me to. I think it’s normal in low volume, just a E-lady feature! By the way, a excelent pedal!

  22. Kenneth Macdonald says:

    Very informative blog. I have bought a couple of budget pedals following your recommendations. Specifically Mooer E-Lady and Ninety Orange. In your opinion what is the main sonic differences between A Boss Blues Driver and a Boss SD-1 which I currently own.

    In addition I hope to record direct into Garage band on ipad do you have any recommendations regarding choice of amp sims? Not sure whetether to use Garageband amp sims or an old Line 6 POD.

    Thanks for any advice you can give, keep up the great work!

    • Bjorn says:

      Thanks! The BD-2 is a more open sounding, less compressed overdrive, with little mid range, lots of low end and gain. The SD-1 is more of a Tube Screamer, with much more compression, mid range and less low end. The BD2 works perfectly with a clean amp, while the SD1 needs a bit of gain from the amp.
      I did record with Garageband in the past but I haven’t used it for a while and I’m not sure what you recommend. I would assume that your POD will provide better sounding amp sims though.

      • Ken Macdonald says:

        Thanks Bjorn for replying I have a further question. I tried to replicate your univibish tone using the Mooer Ninety Orange. However I have a very muddy sound compared to your example. Any recommendations such as amp settings to achieve a clearer tone .



        • Bjorn says:

          What sort of amps are you using? Sims? Which one?

          • Ken says:

            Hi Bjorn, I was using an old Line 6/Pod 2.0 and did not like the tone. I brought out my old Fender J.A.M amp. What a difference . Now I can get close to the Breathe tone in your video using a Mooer Ninety Orange pedal.

  23. Benjamín Vollaire says:

    Hello, I’m starting out on guitar and one of the reasons I got into playing is David Gilmour, and I want to know if this combo serves for playing The Wall, which is my favourite album of all time along with The Dark Side Of The Moon, Animals, and Wish You Were Here, actually I’d really like to know if I can play all of those albums with this combo, thank you for your time

  24. Keith Richards (seriously) says:

    The Moen Shaki Jimi is a more than usable good inexpensive Univibe – type.

  25. Daryl Apostol says:

    I have a Vox ac10 and I’m thinking cpb muff war on the cheap end, Vick audio overdriver in the midrange price range or a jhs muffuletta or skreddy p19 in the higher range. Carvin ash body strat with Dimarzio virtual vintage (neck/mid) and sd ssl5. Trutone h2o and xotic ep booster. Love to hear your advice.

  26. Gabriel Tate says:

    Did David ever use a volume pedal?

    • Bjorn says:

      Yes. Back in the early 70s he used a DeArmond. During the Animals and Wall era he had a customized Cry Baby for volume and since the early 90s, he’s been using Ernie Ball pedals. The volume pedal is placed in front of the delays allowing them to sustain when he mutes the volume.

  27. Alejosue says:

    Hello bjorn how does the katana handle fuzz and big muff
    Cheers from panama

    • Bjorn says:

      I had some great results with Muffs and you can get some nice fuzz tones with it too depending on what fuzz you’re using. Personally I think fuzz pedals in particular sounds best with tube amps.

  28. VINCENT says:


    but people must use the alh effects clones by exemple, it must be more precise than all of these stompbox, by same or lower price, some of u’re suggestions are far of the david’s tones (boss ds1 lol) but it’s an good base! i prefer say to people, it’s better waiting more of time and buy real and good pedal more of buy immediately and by default some pedals who don’t have the exactly tone,no one times … this is not a race, we have time to buy and save again rams and civil war are very expensive in original so buy a real clone just for that. I prefer to pull people up by being demanding rather than letting go to the facility, to the more or less to ultimately a sum all the same consequent, and everybody i able to do it!

    Thanks Bjorn

  29. alejosue says:

    Hi bjorn great list I was wondering if you have ever considered making a budget board demo for your youtube videos, i think i will be a good idea and whats your opinion on the mooer reecho for the gilmour tones. greetings from panama, love this website. :)

  30. David G. says:

    Love PF and DG… After playing for over 40 years.. yeah… I’m old… but, still feel like a nube.

    I want to get that sound we all love. I got a Line 6 POD many years ago… Not sure if I should go with a line 60 HDsomething or other, but really think of getting some pedals…

    but my real question is… I have a MIM Fat Strat… With this, will I still be able to get that sound? I somewhat assume I can, but figure I would get your opinion.

    Thinking about getting a big muff…. which is weird as f–k, since I had one over 30 years ago..
    Then some compressor.. CS-2…. heard a modded CS3 is still good….
    and who knows what else..

    or.. need to check out Line 6 to see what they have now…

    Thanks.. Super Dave

    • Bjorn says:

      Hi Dave, it all depends on what you mean by THAT tone and how picky you are :) What sort of amp do you have? Line 6 and other similar processors has come a long way and you can pretty much dial in anything you need. Obviously, these units was not designed specifically for replicating Gilmour’s tones so it wouldn’t be 100% accurate and you may struggle with some of the signature tones but you’ll definitely be able to get well within the ball park. You can also add stand alone pedals to these units and stuff like a Muff is well worth adding as they rarely sound good digitally. Do check out the Robert Keeley Dark Side pedals that I recentyly reviewed as well.

      • David G says:

        Hi Bjorn,

        Not picky. no amp now.. I use a Yamaha PA. I also have an acoustic, so play that through the PA and use the Line 6 POD for my strat.. Since it is so old. 2.0 ver, I am really thinking of going with an Line 6 HD500X. I liked the pod, and it worked for me, but it was limited…

        either that or a bunch of pedals… I think the HD500 suits me more, if I can get the Gilmourish tone…and based on what I have heard online, it seems I can. I read somewhere that the HD500 is about 85% of the real thing. Just one persons opinion, but I agree it is probably not going to by in the upper 90s… but as many have said, it is not just the pedals, but the fingers…

        back to my question… Lets say I had all your recommended pedals…. and a Hiwatt. How close can a fat strat get to the DG strat?

        Regardless, I may get a Muff since i had one when I was 16 or so… ;-)

        • Bjorn says:

          As I sad, these digital processors are very good and you’ll probably notice a huge upgrade from your older model. I would say that both the HD500X and GT100 will get you very close. They have the delays, phaser, chorus and great sounding overdirves. They often lack good vintage tones as those pedals are hard to replicate digitally.
          Your Strat will get you close but, as you know, it depends on what pedals or effects you use with it.

      • David G says:

        Dang.. Just listened to a comparison between the BossGT100 and the L6 HD500X.. The boss blew the L6 away….

  31. Ross bee says:

    Hey Bjorn,

    Love the site!

    I’m building a gilmourish rig at the moment I currently have,

    Tc Mini Spark
    Dyna Comp
    Green Russian
    Phase 90 script

    Running into a Katana 50 (only playing at home so a tube amp would be too much just for home playing)

    I’m going to get rid of the DS-1 and put an E-lady in its place.

    I’m thinking of getting rid of the SD-1 but I’m torn between the full tone OCD and the EHX Crayon as a replacement, which would you suggest?

    I could also fit another mini pedal onto the board as well but don’t know pedal to go for, any suggestions welcome!

    Btw I’m playing a standard Strat and my favourite Gilmour tones are from the Wall and WYWH.

    TIA, Ross.

    • Bjorn says:

      Hi Ross! I kind of like the DS1 for Gilmour tones. It can be bright but with the right settings and combination of pedals, like an E-Lady, it can easily nail David’s Wall Muff tones. Still, the OCD is perhaps a more versatile pedal. It can do both low gain bluesy stuff and the heavier tones. The Crayon is great too but I would say that the OCD is more versatile.

      • Ross Bee says:

        Hi Bjorn! Thanks for the reply, I actually went for the Crayon in the end and ‘upgraded’ to a micro dark terror head (which I will say all the pedals sound stunning with!)

        I can nail pretty much all the wall and WYWH tones with the board I have now. (Dynacomp-spark mini-green russian-crayon-e lady-phase90-DD7)

        I’m just considering getting a small footprint pedal for more DSOTM tones like the time and money solo’s, looking at the black secret, do you recon this would be suitable or is the green russian enough? An outright Distortion seems to be the only thing my board is lacking!

        Thanks again for all your time and input!


        • Bjorn says:

          The Green Russian is probably enough for Dark Side, although he did use a fuzz at the time. The Black Secret is worth checking out though. Great sounding distortion and a bit more versatile than a Big Muff.

  32. Mike Alex says:

    Hi Bjorn! Finally you did it!

    I would also add a delay to MOOER Reecho, he is very good. For the Gilmour tone I use the “Tape echo” mode.

    3 Delay Modes: Analog/Real Echo/Tape Echo
    Analog: Simulates a warm and smooth echo sound created by classic analog delay equipment.
    Real Echo: Simulates a natural echo sound in real environment.
    Tape Echo: Simulates the sweet and spacy echo sound from a

    Delay Time: 5ms~780ms

    vintage tape echo machine.
    Full metal shell
    Very small and exquisite
    True bypass

    P.S. My MOOER micro pedals: Yellow Comp > Blues Mood > Reecho.

    • Bjorn says:

      Hi Mike! Thanks for the tip! I’ve had one of those for some time but kind of forgot about it. Very similar to the old DD2.

  33. Matt says:

    Hi Bjorn,
    I’m currently running a strat guitar into a deluxe reverb or vox ac15. I’m curious about how you recommend setting the EHX crayon to sound similar to the Colorsound Powerboost for those mid-70s tones.

    • Bjorn says:

      The Crayon is a full range overdrive, meaning that it has a nice balance of everything but the more you increase the bass and treble the less mid range you get and that will be closer to the Powerbooster.

  34. Diogo says:

    Hi Bjorn
    Can you please tell how would you set the OD Glove for those “Tube Driver” tones?

    • Bjorn says:

      Depends on your amp and pickups.

      • Diogo says:

        I have a 50’s style Stratocaster and a Koch Jupiter 45

        • Bjorn says:

          Not that familiar with the Kock but the secret to David’s Tube Driver tones is the combination of his Hiwatts, which has quite a lot of mid range to them, and the fairly transparent Tube Driver. On a Hiwatt style amp I would set the volume to slightly above unity for a bit of boost and the tone around 10-11 o’clock depending on how bright your amp sound. Set the gain as desired.

  35. Ratan says:

    if i am looking for my first overdrive/booster which one will you recommend: Mooer Blues Mood and the EHX Crayon or Boss BD2?

  36. moogbadger says:

    It’s easy to scoff at the BOSS DS-1, but when I attended Pink Floyd’s ‘Mortal Remains’ exhibition at the V&A last year, I saw Phil Taylor / Pete Cornish’s board for David during the ‘Animals’ era of 1978 or so. There were custom controls for a DS-1 on the board, next to the Big Muff and Electric Mistress! The DS-2 might get you even closer in ‘Turbo’ mode.

  37. Frank says:

    Hi Bjorn,
    What do you think about Roto Hotone pedal? I need a Leslie simulator without to spend a lot of money, do you know anything that can suit for a Gilmour tone? Thanks

    • Bjorn says:

      Well worth checking out!

      • Frank says:

        Hi, thanks for your reply!
        Unfortunately I did not find it but a Mooer Soul Shiver which has got an amazing sound considering the price. I have compared it with strymon lex which seem to be great with a lot control buttons but it did not impressed me so much . the soul shiver can do his job very well into a pedal board and is a great enjoyment to use it playing “any color you like”.

  38. Loved this page :) Hope I can be first one to put a comment here :)
    Best part is that all the pedals you mentioned do maintain basic quality till end

  39. BeatleJWOL says:

    Nice update! I have the Mooer Ensemble and the Elec Lady. Awesome little pedals and there’s just about half of your modulation section right there :D

    Now this is inspiring me to dig more into the Mooer library and maybe make a tiny bass pedalboard of some kind.

  40. don says:

    What about the Joyo pedals like their overdrive and the compressor?

  41. Brad Roller says:

    I like how you included the fuzz face mini! Love that little pedal. Would like to add, compared to the analogman bc-108 this mini fuzz has more low end, to my ears! But other than that, there’s really no difference. I also like how you mentioned the fuzz can pass as a big muff, because I’ve used mine on Animals songs, especially live versions, and IMO, does a very good job. Didnt you mention one time a silicon fuzz maxed out could pass for animals tones?

    • Bjorn says:

      Yep. There really isn’t much difference between a ram’s head Muff and a 108/109 silicon fuzz. The fuzz has a bit more harmonics and perhaps slightly less saturation but they’re very similar.

      • Brad Roller says:

        I kinda came to the same conclusion a while back but it’s always good to hear the master’s approval! Lol ;) after all these years, you and David are still my biggest influences. Always inspiring! And guess who is going to pick up a Yamaha Ra-200 tomorrow?? This guy!

        • Bjorn says:

          Oh, wow! Let us know how that turns out!

          • Brad Roller says:

            Got the amp! Holy hell its heavy…if im going to go places with it, im going to have to have it modified, removing the two power amps for the stationary speakers, and the speakers too, for weight. Such a beast. BUT the sound of the rotating horns is magical….such a unique tone. A very clear sound and to my ears handles distortion fairly well IMO. When blended with my reeves it sounds amazing. I see now why David toured with them!! I just feel terrible…..TERRIBLE for his rodies and their backs…I will try and get YouTube clips tonight playing some classic Gilmour. Feel free to add them to your Yamaha Ra-200 page!

  42. Hi Bjørn, i’m feeling a bit split between the EHX Crayon and Buffalo FX TD-X. Both very similar to the Tube Driver of course, but how would you compare them?

    • Bjorn says:

      The Crayon is well worth checkig out. What I like about the TDX is that it sounds smoother and has a more rounded top end, compared to both the Crayon and Tube Driver.

  43. Seth Heaster says:

    Hello once again Bjorn! I run a big muff through a Fender amp. If I put an equalizer that hosts the mids after the muff, would that do the same thing as running a muff into an amp with good mid range?

    • Bjorn says:

      An EQ will compensate to some extent but there’s much more to an amp than just the EQ. You can’t turn a Fender into a Hiwatt or Marshall just by adding a bit of mids but it can make the Muff sound a bit smoother.

  44. Adam Campbell says:

    Nice list! I would add only that I have picked up several Donner pedals and have been impressed with the quality and sound and the price is affordable to any one. Usually $40 and under. I have the Jet Conv Flanger, Ultimate Compressor and Echo Square Delay in the loop currently and so far they perform great.

    On a side note, my wife has started learning piano/keyboard, we are in pur 40’s and I’ve been playing guitar since I was 14. She wants to learn a song to play with me, so I found one over the weekend. Airbag’s Sounds that I Hear is what I suggested and she is all in. So thanks for the great music and inspiration to others.

  45. Frollo says:

    Hi Bjorn! Great list, great job! Thanks a lot!

    Between the Mooer Blues Mood and the EHX Crayon, which one will you go with? (I already have a BD2 on my pedalboard).

    Thanks in advance!


  46. Gordon says:

    Love it. My favourite past time. Never get bored reading about all those wonderful effects. Although the best effect I got recently was the gilmour mod on the strat for the neck and bridge combination….comfortably numb never sounded better. In fact its very inspiring. I’m really enjoying playing again. Thanks for the feature.
    Oh yeah, tc…are bringing out the tube pilot very soon. Will you be doing a demo on it? Ta!

  47. Silvio says:

    beautiful article! if you allow me I would suggest, among the new mini pedals, the phase 95 mxr and the angel wing (chorus) of the Tone City. Greetings

  48. james says:

    When you going to do a budget board demo?

  49. Israel says:

    The Best post!

  50. Joel says:

    I knew I should have got the Crayon instead of the OCD. D’oh!

  51. Victor says:

    Great info! Thanks!!

    • Julia says:

      Hi Bjorn – thank you for a terrific website!

      Does anybody know if Gilmour is playing a lap steel or a regular 6 string electric on “Pigs (Three Different Ones)” — you can definitely hear a slide throughout the song way in the background — it makes it even more ominous — can’t believe Gilmour played the bass on this tune as well — what a talent — go Gilly!!!

      • Bjorn says:

        Thank you! As far as I can tell, that’s not a slide but him playing a guitar and using the guitar volume to create these swell sounds. Pick the note with thevolume off and roll it up. Use some delay to create ambience.

        • Julia says:

          Ah ha! So, bend the strings, release or raise, while simultaneously swelling the volume up or down while using plenty of reverb, brilliant! “Comfortably Numb” had me confused, I believe that he is definitely using a lap steel with plenty of reverb there at the very beginning there, correct?

          • Bjorn says:

            Jepp, that’s the technique. Alhough I believe he’s using echo rather than reverb. Or possibly both. The intro on Numb is a slide. Either a steel of some sort or a guitar.

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