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  /    /  Guitar Effects Pedals  /  BOSS DS1 Distortion Pedal

BOSS DS1 Distortion Pedal

(1 customer review)


This Epic BOSS DS1 Distortion pedal has the following features;

  • Classic BOSS Distortion pedal tones for
  • Use with guitar or keyboard
  • Reprises dynamics of playing
  • Level and Tone control

In stock

SKU: DS1 Category:


Used by Professionals Universally

The BOSS DS1 Distortion pedal provides gives you the iconic rock and punk sound that you have grown to love! with a harder distortion effect for guitar and keyboard sounds. Instead of toneless, fuzzy distortion, the DS-1 faithfully reproduces all the subtle nuances of playing dynamics–at any volume.

Boss ds-1 Key Features:

  • Classic BOSS Distortion tones for guitar and keyboard
  • Reproduces dynamics of playing, from soft to hard
  • Distortion, Level and Tone control to tailor overall sound as desired
  • BOSS five-year warranty

All the great musicians love this effects pedal

While they may not be household names in the rock scene, Gary Moore, Kurt Cobain and many more created some of their greatest music using a BOSS DS-1 distortion pedal. This iconic orange stompbox has been around for over 40 years with its distinct tone being featured on numerous albums from 1978 to this day.

What’s the Difference Between a DS-1, SD-1, and BD-2?

Boss ds1 vs ds2

Discover the distinctions between these three pedals. Investigate how they sound, how they’re used, including which one might operate best for you.

If you want to start playing with overdrive pedals, these three are solid choices. The Blues Driver has the most subtle tone of all three; it’s great for blues and classic rock tones without too much distortion or fuzziness. Distortion is more intense than Overdrive but not as heavy-sounding as Metal Zone (from another BOSS drive).

The DS-1 Distortion, SD-1 Super Overdrive, and BD2 Blues Driver are some of the longest-running nonmetal drives from Boss that have been successful throughout their run in popularity since its creation back in 1977 by one Mr Ibanez who wanted a bigger sound out his amp so he asked Roland Corporation if they could make him something which would be able to give him this.

DS-1: The Original Distortion

You can’t talk about distortion pedals without beginning with the BOSS DS1 Distortion pedal, the OG BOSS distortion. To start with, it’s the pedal with the longest production run in history. The DS-1 has remained in constant production from 1978 until today. In addition, it’s pretty simple, the best-selling distortion pedal in history.

The DS-1 Distortion is not about subtlety. It’s raw, punk, rock ‘n’ roll energy distilled into a seemingly innocuous orange pedal. With its razor-sharp, hard-edged distortion sound, the DS-1 has been key to defining the sound of musical movements. These range from grunge artists like Kurt Cobain to virtuosic instrumental rocker Joe Satriani.

SD-1: Asymmetric and Amp-Like

In 1977, BOSS released the OD-1 Overdrive. It made history the first pedal to depart from the ragged, hard-edged fuzz-style effects of the psychedelic ’60s. Instead, it utilized “asymmetric clipping” to replicate an overdriven tube amp’s organic tone and dynamics.

The SD-1 Super Overdrive debuted in 1981. It took the tube-like overdriven OD-1 sound and added the wide-ranging versatility of a Tone control. With the incorporation of this new feature, it became an instant classic.

So, what does it sound like? Well, for starters, the tone profile of an SD-1 features a mid “hump.” This means there is a midrange boost while the bass and treble get pulled back slightly. Played into a clean guitar amp, the SD-1 yields a warm, creamy, soft-clipping tone. It has a natural, amp-like compression and dynamics in the vein of classic British sounds. SINCE ITS RELEASE, the SD-1 has been a mainstay on the Edge’s pedalboard, along with the OD-2 Turbo Overdrive.

However, using an SD-1 to push the front of a crunchy Marshall amp is where many ’80s pros found their tonal nirvana. The mid-hump EQ profile and level boost work together to slam the amp into screaming high-gain Overdrive. All the while, it while tightens up the overall response. This makes the SD-1 the weapon of choice for hair metal heroes like Zakk Wylde (Ozzy Osbourne), Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi), and Warren DeMartini (Ratt).

BD-2: The Blue Blues Box

As the name implies, the Blues Driver is the perfect companion for dynamic blues guitar. Its expressive gain structure reacts organically to every nuance, from picking attack to dynamics.

Tonally, it sits somewhere between the SD-1 and DS-1. The BD-2 has a stiffer attack than an SD-1 and a brighter, more scooped sound. Some might say it’s more transparent than the big mid-hump of the SD-1. This strident drive sound, reminiscent of classic combos, slices through mixes with ease. The BD-2 also has a surprising amount of gain on tap. From barely-there clean boost to near-fuzz territory and a whole lot in between, it’s all in there. Bring on those stinging, searing blues licks.

It’s hard to beat the heritage of the two other luminaries of the drive/distortion world. Still, since its debut in 1995, the Blues Driver has become as much of a staple as the DS-1 and SD-1. Notable users like John Mayer (during the John Mayer Trio era) and Prince turn to the BD-2. These icons use it for everything from light, touch-sensitive Overdrive to cranked Distortion.  

I hope this helps!!! Feel free to contact us for all your effects pedals questions.

1 review for BOSS DS1 Distortion Pedal

  1. Ryan Griffiths

    I love this Pedal! Ever since I started listening to Nirvana in the ’90s and all other rock bands I had to figure out how they got this distorted sound. So glad I found this boss distortion pedal ds 1 here at Music Specialists. Highly recommend.

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