Guitar Effects Pedals – The Practical Handbook

Guitar Effects Pedals : The Practical Handbook is the latest release from Backbeat Books, an updated and expanded version of the guide created by Dave Hunter.

Guitar Effects Pedals

This guide is meant to help guitar players better understand the various types and brands of stompboxes in the market.

Effects pedals are now considered as essential tools by guitar players of every playing level and style. These stompboxes are relied upon to provide subtle enhancements or totally change the sound into something new, expanding the tonal palette that guitarists can make music with.

Because of high demand, guitarists now face a dilemma of having to pick the effects they need from the multitude of effect types and brands available. This book aims to address this issue, helping guitarists make better informed choices when buying and setting up their pedals.

The author starts the guide by revisiting the earliest guitar effects, including spring reverb, tube amp overdrive, manual vibrato and tremolo. The book then works its way up to the latest effects that include Mastortions, Giggities, Tremvelopes and Euphorias. According to the press release: “The Practical Handbook gives them everything to understand and enjoy their pedals – old and new, simple and sophisticated. The book explores the history of different effects pedals, what each type of effect does and how it does it, and the best ways in which to use and combine effects.”

Aside from providing information on the actual pedals, the book also provides the back story of the pedals by interviewing the leading pedal makers and designers. The author also tried to find the answers to curious guitar pedal related-questions that include: “What were Jimi Hendrix’s pedal secrets? Is ‘true bypass’ a good thing or not? Can your choice of battery make a difference to your sound? Are vintage components really better? Why does veteran pedal guru Roger Mayer not think much of the modern ‘boutique’ pedal designs? How did the Big Muff Pi and the Voodoo Lab Proctavia get their intriguing names?”

As a plus, Backbeat Books adds a cover-mounted CD to the book, which holds nearly 100 recorded sound samples of effect pedals that range from familiar to obscure.

This new expanded version adds more than 20 modern effects manufacturer sound samples, 50% more interviews and some revisions to the original text. The publisher summarized the release by saying: “This is the only book on the market that includes all of these important elements in the examination of effects pedals – a comprehensive history of the art; profiles on both vintage and contemporary (including “boutique”) units; and expert advice on all aspects of using these tools. For any serious player interested in honing the perfect tone the right way, this is the go-to reference.”

Guitar Effects Pedals – The Practical Handbook is available online for $26.99. Get the latest price & reviews at

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