Ibanez TS808 Tube Screamer

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Ibanez TS808 Tube Screamer

Who knew in 1979 that a little green pedal called the Tube Screamer was going to change the guitar playing world forever? These units have become as essential as the electric guitar, or an instrument cable, or even the amplifier. The very word overdrive is synonymous for Tube Screamers as this point. I recommend getting one and sitting and listening to match the overdrive setting of the Tube Screamer with the sound of your tube amplifier breaking up. They are legendary for a reason!

Benefits TS808 Tube Screamer

Ibanez TS808 Tube Screamer is more than an overdrive. It shapes the tone of your guitar. I have not found similar pedal that sounds better than a TS. The pedal can make a decent, not expensive guitar sounds amazing, and it improves the sound of a so-so amp tremendously. I recommend this pedal for all guitarists who likes a cleaner sound

  • If set properly its almost transparent.
  • It does take a thin sounding tone and make it thicker.
  • It does take a shrill tone and makes it warmer.
  • Real easy to use.
  • It mixes a creamy flavor to my overdriven tones and tightens the bass just fine.
  • Much better than the TS9 – smoother clipping and less harsh.
  • Very nice middle of the road again tone.
  • This pedal is silky smooth and gives just the right amount of grit to give you the best tonality in existance.
  • Adds a nice boost/tightness to your tone.
  • Great pedal – provides a very smooth overdrive that works well with other pedals.

Excellent guitar pedal, works wonderful as either a boost or overdrive. Slightly warmer than a TS9 tube screamer with a very versatile tonal range.

Nothing like a Tube Screamer to give you that colorful distortion. Gives you the right amount of dirt in your sound without going over the top. Put it through the distortion channel on a Fender amp and it gives you a decent longer sustain. This is not a pedal for metal shredding. On its own think blues ala Stevie Ray Vaughn. Team it up with a distortion channel on an amp and you can get a nice sustain suitable for a vintage rock sound.

The quintessential sound for any serious guitar player. It’s the pedal every overdrive pedal tries to emulate. Most OD/Distortion pedals retain your original signal by pushing your amp. The Ibanez TS amplifies the mids giving a more edgy touch responsive sound to your signal. Any serious guitar player goes back to the Ibanez TS to describe the pedal that started it all. It’s the standard by which all OD pedals want to copy and most guitar masters want to have in their arsenal.

One of the best overdrives out there. The circuit is the same as the original one. There will always be a very small difference in tone between older and newer, one old one to another and one new one to another because of component tolerances and various manufacturers.

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Ibanez TS-808 VS TS-9 

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Conclusion

Perfect pedal for those looking for a distortion pedal that retains the sound of the amp (transparent overdrive type stuff). If you’re looking for some thick Cream fuzz you’d have to use both your amp distortion and the Ts808 or just buy another pedal for heavier stuff. All in all, great pedal. Don’t look for option cheaper than this one, this is best quality at its price. I’m content with just pairing it with my amp even though it’s an extra button to press-not that big of a deal. Sounds excellent either way.

I bought Ibanez TS808 Tube Screamer because it is a classic. I have a number of other overdrive pedals, but none of them have the smooth sound of the TS. The TS has a characteristic midrange boost, and also cuts the bass and some treble. The distortion is basic and warm, and it sounds perfect for lead/solo parts. Like someone else said, it boosts just the right frequencies. It brings out a vocal quality to the notes which really makes the guitar sing. I have other distortion pedals which are more transparent, and boost the sound across the whole frequency range. But this one is unique because it intentionally colors the sound. It makes solo parts sound vocal and round. The TS808 is known for having medium gain with a warm quality, compared to the slightly more aggressive TS9. I like it. Very nice tone.

I have the mini Tube Screamer also and they are awfully close in sound, the full size one seems to have a little more low end but in a blind test, I don’t think I could tell them apart. I do like the larger knobs on the full size pedal. It’s easier to see and feel the adjustments. The mini TS has a better foot switch, I can feel it click. The full size TS switch has no feel and the LED is not very bright.

Perfect pedal for those looking for a distortion pedal that retains the sound of the amp (transparent overdrive type stuff). If you’re looking for some thick Cream fuzz you’d have to use both your amp distortion and the Ts808 or just buy another pedal for heavier stuff. All in all, great pedal. Don’t look for option cheaper than this one, this is best quality at its price. I’m content with just pairing it with my amp even though it’s an extra button to press-not that big of a deal. Sounds excellent either way.

My conclusion? It rocks! What you get is a classic, no frills 808 sound. It’s got the mid range, the versatility, the overdrive and quality any good pedal should have.
It can go from a great clean boost, to a little grit or even a screaming lead tone. I have gone as far as to give it a permanent place on my board along with two other overdrive pedals. Will I replace it in the future? I don’t know, maybe with the handwired version. However, if you love the ts sound or need a good solid dependable pedal with plenty of versatility, scoop one up!

Need Not I mention it is affordable, especially used. You really can’t go wrong! If you are searching for advice, I hope this helps. As for my last thought, keep in mind… Taste and opinion plays the biggest roles in gear shoot outs. What I love may not be what you love, so do your research and choose wisely, for we have a vast multitude of options these days. Enjoy the journey to great tone!

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