– Guitar distortion pedal Soul Breaker –
“Soul Breaker has a brilliant, natural sounding distortion that lends itself perfectly to thick, heavy riffing and percussive speed picking runs. If you didn’t know it was a pedal you’d swear it was a tube amp. This pedal rocks.. and it rocks hard !
– Ben Higgins –
Soul Breaker guitar distortion pedal – Ben Higgins signature mode
A high gain guitar distortion pedal. 2 selectable gain stages and 3 band EQ
Soul Breaker is a high gain, guitar distortion pedal. It’s custom build for Ben Higgins and comes to the public with limited lifetime warranty. It’s a heavy metal, dual channel distortion pedal. There are lots of guitar distortion pedals in the market. Soul Breaker is unique. It’s got lots of mids and is considered to be very “clean sounding” distortion. It’s got 2 channels of distortion.
Its 3 band EQ is greatly responsive. Tone controls shape the tone very well. Massive low end with a corner frequency of 100Hz, screaming highs and woody mids. The mids response is the guitars distortion pedal’s main character. It gives a lot of “body”to the guitar sound, or it can be scooped for thrash metal tones. The Soul Breaker distortion pedal is equipped with Warlord’s light emitting borders on it’s base. It changes color depending on the mode selected. That’s a cool effect for on stage performances.
Soul Breaker guitar distortion pedal has 5 pots. Gain – Bass – Treble – Contour – Output, tagged after Ben’s ideas, so you will not see any “Gain” tag under the Gain pot!
The Gain, controls the amount of distortion you dial in.
The Bass controls the amount of the low frequencies. With the Bass out, only the high frequencies pass to the distortion stage of the unit. The treble works the same way but on the high frequencies. It allows you to add high end to your sound.
The contour knob is a little bit tricky. It’s set in reverse on this guitar distortion pedal. So, when the knob is at 7 o’clock position, all the mids are in play. As you move the knob higher, it subtracts mids from your sound. So when the Contour is maxed out, you got a thrash metal tone with the mids scooped.
The tone controls of the Soul Breaker guitar distortion pedal are very interactive. They create an extremely wide sonic palette. So, you can craft the tone you want easily. Experiment with the interaction of the controls, and you will see what this unit can give you. It’s very versatile.
You may notice that with the EQ out (Bass -0 Treble -0) there is almost no input. But since one of the control goes up, there is “life” in the unit.
The Output knob controls the output volume of the unit.
- Gain Stages
This unit has two gain stages controlled by a foot switch. One mode is set for rhythm playing and the other for lead playing.
If you are looking for something more extreme, check the Crusher metal distortion pedal.
Havoc mode it the rhythm mode. When engaged, the green led indicator goes on and green light emits through the unit’s borders. You will love the way it sounds. Pretty “clean” and compressed for distortion! Tight and clean. Picking responsive, cleans well with guitar’s volume pot. Natural, woody sounding. Dynamics in your playing do show off. It’s not a noisy distortion. On the contrary, is very “precise” in a way. Paul Guilbert kind of distortion. Paired with a tube amp, this pedal shows its potential to the maximum.
Armageddon mode is the lead mode. Armageddon is is louder than Havoc. It’s output level is well balanced for lead phrasing. So if you want that extra boost for your solos, Armageddon is perfect. You don’t need any extra booster pedal. Just step on the selector switch. Led indicator goes red, and red light emits through Soul Breakers borders.
Here is Ben Higgins reviewing his signature model
In this video, Ben Higgins demonstrates the prototype pedal I build for him
Check this videos to get an idea of it’s sound. This is Part one, demonstrating low to high gain distortion on Green mode on the prototype model.
And here is Part two, demonstrating Red mode (high gain) and the differences between the 2 modes on the prototype model.
The design of it (just like the prototype) is totally inspired by Ben’s song Soul Breaker, of it’s “Defining Armageddon” album. Check this link to see what I mean http://www.thereckoning.net/merch.php. The signature model is not black and red like the prototype design. It’s a dark gray color with anodized aluminum plating on top and black pots covers. The engraved aluminum plate on top of the unit is the main aesthetic difference. The unit has light emitting borders that turn from Green to Red, depending on which gain mode is engaged, just like the prototype Soul Breaker.
The signature model
The whole unit is 100% handmade. Aluminum drilling, circuit board, light emitting borders etc, are all done by hand. Hand wired, tested and loved.
- Power consumption
Soul Breaker guitar distortion pedal needs 7mA plus 30mA for it’s light emitting circuit equals 37mA, so it’s wise to plug it to a Boss type power supply. That’s why there is no battery compartment in it.
- Compared to the prototype pedal
If you know the prototype you’ve may notice the differences! Soul Breaker is a guitar pedal based on the very first prototype distortion circuit I’ve designed for Ben Higgins. Ben Higgins is a guitar instructor at http://guitarmasterclass.net/, and founder of the metal band THE RECKONING.
There is NO sonic difference between the prototype and the signature Soul Breaker model. Both models sound exactly the same.
Differences between Soul Breaker prototype and the Soul Breaker signature model
Soul Breaker signature model has some differences compared to the prototype. Differences in circuit design, as well as aesthetic differences. The circuit design has been modified. The toggle switch for the gain stages has been replaced by a foot switch. An extra DC filtering circuit is employed inside the aluminum enclosure. So if your power supply is noisy, the filter will cut of the rectification leak. That way, no buzzing sound due to AC/DC (not the band!) rectification will get into the pedal or guitar amp. The two Led gain status indicators of the prototype have been replaced by a single bi color led indicator going from Red to Green, depending on the gain stage engaged.
By George Liagas – Google