Best Overdrive Guitar Pedals Under $100 (Ultimate Guide 2023)

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Looking for the best overdrive guitar pedals under $100? This ultimate guide will help you find the perfect pedal for your tone, style, and budget. Learn about the different types of overdrive pedals, how to use them, and what to look for when buying one. Plus, get reviews and recommendations of the top 10 overdrive pedals under $100 in 2023.

 

1. Earthquaker Devices Plumes

VERSATILE OVERDRIVE

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2. Boss Super Overdrive

WARM AND MUSICAL

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3. Ibanez TubeScreamer Mini

MIDRANGE BOOSTER

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4. Joyo Vintage Drive                       

SMOOTH CLONE

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5. TC Electronic MojoMojo

NATURAL AMP SIM

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6. Outlaw Effects Dumbleweed

VERSATILE FUZZ

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1. Earthquaker Devices Plumes

MODERATELY VERSATILE OVERDRIVE

Three clipping modes for gain.low-noise JFET op-amp
Flexible tone control for customization.True bypass preserves signal integrity.
Picture by Earthquaker

Picture by Alesis

PROS

  • If you’re on the hunt for a cost-effective yet exceptional overdrive pedal, the Earthquaker Devices Plumes is worth considering. This pedal takes the classic Tube Screamer circuit, amplifying it with various enhancements and features, making it stand out. Here are four reasons why adding the Plumes to your pedalboard is a great idea.

    Firstly, it offers three clipping modes, allowing you to select between different levels of gain, compression, and harmonic content. With a simple switch, you can transition from a smooth, transparent boost to a crunchier, more saturated distortion.

    Secondly, it features a low-noise JFET op-amp, which delivers extra headroom and clarity compared to the original IC chip. As a result, you can increase the volume without any unwanted noise or loss of definition.

    Next, it boasts a versatile tone control that enables both bass and treble frequency cuts or boosts. Regardless of your preferred genre or style, you can shape your sound precisely to achieve a warm, fat tone, or a bright, cutting one.

    Lastly, it offers a true bypass switch that maintains the integrity of your signal when the pedal is turned off. This ensures that you won’t sacrifice any of your original tone or dynamics.

    The Earthquaker Devices Plumes is an affordable, multifaceted overdrive pedal that can enhance any guitar rig. In 2023, it stands out as one of the finest overdrive pedals available for under $100. Don’t miss the opportunity to acquire this incredible pedal!

CONS

  • The EarthQuaker Devices Plumes is a highly versatile overdrive pedal that offers various options for tone shaping. However, it’s important to be aware of a couple of potential drawbacks before purchasing.
  • Firstly, the pedal’s three different clipping modes drastically change the level of distortion and can cause variations in output volume. This can be inconvenient if you want to switch modes quickly, as you’ll need to adjust the level knob or use an external volume pedal.
  • Additionally, while inspired by the classic Tube Screamer, the Plumes is not an exact replica. It has its own unique circuit design, components, and sound, which may not meet your expectations if you’re seeking a faithful Tube Screamer clone. Despite these drawbacks, the Plumes is still an outstanding pedal that warrants consideration for your pedalboard. Before making a purchase, it’s always helpful to know what to expect. For more in-depth information and reviews on the best overdrive pedals under $100, refer to our comprehensive guide for 2023.

2. Boss Super Overdrive

WARM AND MUSICAL

Asymmetrical clipping, tone control, boost, durability.Effective bass and treble control.
Boost function enhances signal and volume.Durable and reliable with indicator.
Picture by Boss

PROS

    • The Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive is a sought-after overdrive pedal known for its popularity and affordability. It has been embraced by a plethora of guitarists across various genres, from blues legends to metal icons, as a means to achieve a diverse range of tones and effects. Here, we explore four significant pros of the Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive, making it an ideal choice for any guitarist in search of a versatile and dependable overdrive pedal within a $100 budget.

      Firstly, the pedal employs asymmetrical clipping, which uniquely distorts the signal’s positive and negative peaks. This results in a more organic and dynamic overdrive sound akin to a tube amp, while also generating both even and odd harmonics that contribute depth and complexity to the distortion.

      Secondly, the Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive includes a simple yet effective tone control feature, enabling you to finely adjust the balance between bass and treble frequencies. This grants greater flexibility in tailoring your sound to match your personal preference, guitar, and amplifier, whether you desire a warm and smooth overdrive tone or a cutting and bright sound.

      Thirdly, the pedal can function as a boost pedal, allowing you to heighten your signal level and drive your amplifier harder. By reducing the drive knob and increasing the level knob, a clean boost can be achieved, adding volume and clarity to your overall tone. Alternatively, utilizing the drive knob along with the boost imparts grit and sustain, creating a more aggressive sound.

      Lastly, the Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive boasts impressive durability and reliability. Constructed with a robust metal casing and a heavy-duty footswitch, it withstands years of extensive use without compromising performance or quality. Furthermore, it incorporates a low battery indicator, alerting you in advance when the battery is running low, thus alleviating concerns of power loss during performances or recording sessions.

      These are just a few reasons why the Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive ranks among the finest overdrive pedals under $100. Being a timeless classic, it has established its worth and secured a place on numerous guitarists’ pedalboards. Therefore, if you seek an overdrive pedal delivering exceptional tone, versatility, and value, the Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive unquestionably emerges as a top choice.

CONS

  • The Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive is an affordable and timeless overdrive pedal that offers a wide tonal range, from warm and smooth to tight and aggressive. However, there are a couple of drawbacks worth considering before purchasing.

    Firstly, the tone control on the SD-1 is not very versatile. It solely affects high frequencies, which can result in a sound that is either overly bright or excessively dull. This lack of control over the midrange and low end limits your ability to shape your overdrive sound. For a more comprehensive EQ section, consider alternatives like the MXR GT-OD Overdrive or the Electro-Harmonix Soul Food.

    Secondly, the SD-1 can produce noticeable noise at high gain settings due to its asymmetrical clipping. While this characteristic generates rich and dynamic overdrive with even and odd harmonics, it can also result in excess hiss and noise. To mitigate this issue, using a noise gate pedal like the Boss NS-2 Noise Suppressor or the TC Electronic Sentry Noise Gate might be necessary, especially when playing in quiet environments or recording.

    Despite these drawbacks, the Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive remains an affordable and classic option that can provide a variety of tones.

3. Ibanez TubeScreamer Mini

MIDRANGE BOOSTER

Same circuit as original, classic sound.Small, lightweight and portable.
Very affordable, costs under $100.Versatile across genres and instruments.
Picture by Ibanez

PROS

  • If you’re searching for an affordable overdrive pedal that provides exceptional tone without breaking the bank, look no further than the Ibanez TubeScreamer Mini. This compact version of the renowned TubeScreamer offers the same warm and smooth overdrive tone, which has made it a favorite amongst countless guitarists. The Ibanez TubeScreamer Mini boasts four significant advantages:

    Firstly, featuring the identical circuit as the original TubeScreamer, this pedal delivers the classic sound that can amplify your amp or add grit to your clean tone. With three knobs- Drive, Tone, and Level- you can easily adjust the distortion amount, sound brightness, and output volume.

    Secondly, its small and lightweight design makes it effortlessly fit onto any pedalboard or be carried in your gig bag, measuring only 3.6 x 2 x 2 inches and weighing 8 ounces. Despite its size, the pedal is durably constructed with a sturdy metal chassis and a true bypass switch.

    Moreover, the Ibanez TubeScreamer Mini comes at an excellent price point, retailing for under $100, making it a fantastic choice for beginners or those seeking a high-quality overdrive pedal without breaking the bank. Additionally, it comes with a 1-year warranty from Ibanez.

    Lastly, it exhibits remarkable versatility, seamlessly complementing various genres and musical styles. Whether you play blues, rock, metal, or anything in between, the Ibanez TubeScreamer Mini offers a suitable tone. It also works well with different types of guitars and amps, preserving the instrument’s natural character.

    These are just a few reasons why the Ibanez TubeScreamer Mini ranks among the best overdrive pedals under $100. To hear its incredible sound, check out this demo video.

CONS

  • The Ibanez TubeScreamer Mini is a highly popular overdrive pedal with good reason. Its classic, warm, and smooth tone can enhance any guitar sound. However, this pedal is not without its drawbacks.
  • Firstly, it has a limited range of controls, with only three knobs for drive, tone, and level. This lack of adjustability may not suit those seeking more versatility and customization.
  • Secondly, at high settings, the TubeScreamer Mini can be noisy, introducing unwanted noise and hiss. While not deal-breakers, these aspects should be considered before making a purchase. For more information on the Ibanez TubeScreamer Mini and other affordable overdrive pedals, check out our comprehensive 2023 guide.

4. Joyo Vintage Drive

SMOOTH CLONE

Warm and smooth tone.True bypass switch preserves signal.
sturdy metal casingVery affordable with great sound.
Picture by Joyo

PROS

  • If you’re in search of an affordable overdrive pedal that delivers outstanding performance, look no further than the Joyo Vintage Drive. Serving as a clone of the legendary Boss SD-1 Super Overdrive, this pedal comes with enhancements and a lower price tag. Here are four major advantages of the Joyo Vintage Drive:

    First and foremost, it provides a warm and smooth tone that ranges from subtle boosts to crunchy distortion. Equipped with a straightforward three-knob layout comprising level, tone, and drive controls, achieving your desired sound is a breeze.

    Secondly, it includes a true bypass switch that safeguards your signal integrity whenever the pedal is disengaged. Unlike its cheaper counterparts, the Joyo Vintage Drive doesn’t compromise your tone or introduce unwanted noise to your signal chain.

    Moreover, its sturdy metal casing can withstand the rigors of frequent gigging and touring, ensuring longevity. The knobs and switch are equally solid and highly responsive.

    Lastly, affordability is a standout feature of the Joyo Vintage Drive. Priced at less than $50, this pedal offers the same superior sound as the Boss SD-1, making it a steal for any musician.

    With its versatility, reliability, and user-friendly nature, the Joyo Vintage Drive rightfully claims its position as one of the best overdrive pedals under $100 in 2023. If you desire a classic overdrive sound combined with modern features, it’s worth giving this pedal a shot.

CONS

  • The Joyo Vintage Drive is a popular overdrive pedal that aims to replicate the classic Tube Screamer sound. It features a simple design with three knobs – drive, tone, and volume – as well as a true bypass switch and a JRC4588 chip. However, there are a couple of drawbacks to consider before purchasing this pedal.

    Firstly, the lack of originality is a notable con. The Joyo Vintage Drive is essentially a clone of the Ibanez Tube Screamer, one of the most widely copied pedals in history. While it does a decent job of replicating the Tube Screamer tone, it doesn’t offer anything new or innovative to the overdrive market. If you’re seeking a unique or distinctive overdrive sound, it may be best to explore other options.

    Secondly, there are quality issues associated with the Joyo Vintage Drive. Being an affordable pedal, it isn’t known for exceptional craftsmanship. Some users have reported problems with its durability, reliability, and consistency. For instance, faulty switches, noisy pots, and loose jacks have been reported. Additionally, the plastic battery cover is prone to breakage or falling off.

    In conclusion, while the Joyo Vintage Drive is an affordable and decent option for a Tube Screamer clone, it may not be the optimal overdrive pedal for under $100. It is advisable to consider exploring alternative options, which can be found next in our comprehensive guide to the best overdrive guitar pedals under $100.

5. TC Electronic MojoMojo

NATURAL AMP SIM

Transparent, organic tone; versatile EQ.Versatile EQ section with toggle.
Compact and sturdy design.Great value for money.
Picture by TC

PROS

  • If you are searching for an affordable overdrive pedal that delivers exceptional performance, look no further than the TC Electronic MojoMojo. Designed to replicate the iconic sound of a vintage tweed amp, this pedal offers an abundance of headroom, dynamics, and clarity. Here are four compelling reasons why the MojoMojo stands out as one of the best overdrive pedals on the market for under $100.

    Firstly, the MojoMojo boasts a transparent and organic tone. It subtly enhances your sound with warm and natural overdrive without overpowering it. Whether you prefer a clean boost, mild crunch, or rich distortion, this pedal responds impeccably to your playing dynamics, allowing your guitar’s unique character to shine through.

    Secondly, the MojoMojo features a versatile EQ section. With dedicated bass and treble knobs, you have complete control over shaping your tone. Boost or cut low and high frequencies to your preference or keep them neutral for a well-balanced sound. Additionally, the toggle switch offers two modes: normal and 11. The former grants a full and fat sound, while the latter adds extra gain and bite.

    Thirdly, this pedal boasts a compact and durable design. Its small footprint ensures it won’t occupy much space on your pedalboard, and the robust metal chassis guarantees reliability during gigs and tours. Changing the battery is a breeze thanks to the easy-access door, which requires no tools. The pedal can either run on a standard 9V battery or an adapter.

    Lastly, the MojoMojo offers great value for money. Despite its affordability, it refuses to compromise on quality or performance. Its remarkable tone rivals that of more expensive pedals, and its unique features set it apart from the rest. At a mere $50 online, it presents an incredible deal you won’t want to miss out on.

    The TC Electronic MojoMojo truly deserves the attention and recognition it has yet to receive. As a hidden gem, it grants you the sound of a vintage amp in a convenient box, complete with endless tone tweaking possibilities. If you seek an all-encompassing overdrive pedal, don’t hesitate to give the MojoMojo a try.

CONS

  • The TC Electronic MojoMojo is an affordable and versatile overdrive pedal that can produce a wide range of tones, from bluesy crunch to hard rock distortion. With its voice switch and tone-shaping knobs, you can customize the pedal’s sound to your liking. However, there are a few drawbacks to consider before purchasing the MojoMojo.
  • Firstly, some users have reported that the pedal can be noisy when used with high gain settings or in front of a dirty amp, producing annoying hissing or humming sounds.
  • Secondly, certain combinations of guitars or amps may result in a pedal that sounds too bright or harsh. To mitigate these issues, additional components such as a noise gate or EQ pedal may be required, which would add to the cost and complexity of your setup. Overall, while the TC Electronic MojoMojo offers great versatility and affordability, it is important to be aware of these potential drawbacks.

6. Outlaw Effects Dumbleweed

VERSATILE FUZZ

Adjustable EQ Response: Versatile tone control.True bypass for clear tone.
Very affordable at $49.99.very compact and pedalboard-friendly
Picture by Outlaw

PROS

  • If you’re in search of an affordable overdrive pedal that can deliver the iconic Dumble tone without draining your wallet, the Outlaw Effects Dumbleweed is worth considering. This pedal draws inspiration from the highly sought-after (and expensive) rock & roll sound, offering a wide range of drive tones, from subtle breakup to full-bodied, fuzzy dirt. Here are four key benefits of this pedal:

    1. The Voice control allows for adjustable EQ response, giving you the flexibility to achieve a bright and cutting sound or a warm and smooth one. It enhances your ability to match the pedal to your guitar and amp settings.

    2. With its true bypass feature, the pedal won’t interfere with your signal when it’s turned off. This ensures the integrity and clarity of your tone, especially if you have a lengthy signal chain with other pedals.

    3. Priced at just $49.99 at The Pedal Guy store, it’s a cost-effective option that emulates the sound of amps that can set you back tens of thousands of dollars.

    4. The pedal’s compact and pedalboard-friendly design, measuring only 1.75″ x 3.75″ x 1.5″, occupies minimal space on your board, leaving plenty of room for other effects.

    These factors establish the Outlaw Effects Dumbleweed as one of the top overdrive pedals under $100 in 2023. If you’re interested in adding this pedal to your arsenal of tone tools, you can conveniently order it from The Pedal Guy store online or find it at your local music store. You won’t regret incorporating this pedal into your setup.

CONS

  • The budget-friendly Outlaw Effects Dumbleweed overdrive pedal is designed to replicate the iconic Dumble amplifiers, offering an array of gain and tone options along with a voice switch to modify the overall sound. Nonetheless, a couple of drawbacks are worth noting.
  • Firstly, the Dumbleweed lacks versatility as it seeks to mimic a specific amp tone that might not be compatible with diverse styles or preferences, sometimes resulting in excessive brightness or harshness when the voice switch is set to high. Additionally, it lacks a mid control, making it arduous to stand out in the mix or adapt to various guitars and amps.
  • Secondly, the pedal’s durability is questionable due to its plastic construction and fragile battery compartment, which is prone to damage or detachment. Furthermore, noise or hum can be an issue, mainly at higher gain levels. Users have reported problems with the input jack and footswitch, essentially affecting the reliability and performance. Overall, the Outlaw Effects Dumbleweed may serve as an economical and uncomplicated option to achieve a Dumble-esque sound, but those seeking greater versatility, durability, and quality might want to explore alternative options.

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