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Danelectro Transparent Overdrive vs. Bad Monkey


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fairly new? I've not even seen them for sale yet.


 

 

Those new dano pedals were listed in the MF catalog that showed up yesterday.

 

I know Phil and Bieke had a couple of pedals they tried out and wrote reviews on, but I can't remember if that pedal was one of them.

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The staff was gracious enough to send me the Transparent OD along with the Dist and Vibe. All top-notch for the cash, and would honestly buy the Trans and Vibe new after trying them if I didn't have them already. The Trans OD and Bad Monkey both have Treble and Bass controls, along with gain and volume, but those are the only similarities, really.

 

Bad Monkey is essentially a TS9 sort with extra goodies, which basically means voicing with a very well pronounced midrange hump when engaged, along with the ability to tweak things a bit with the added bass and treble controls, instead of a simple tone knob. Kick in for solos, we know what it does and how it basically compresses through the gain stages. Turn down gain and you still have a hump of sorts with less gain. Cool although I never kept mine.

 

The Trans OD has a much flatter EQ curve that conversely stays flat regardless of gain position (does a good clean boost), and more importantly has more "potential" gain than the Monkey due to the interactive function of the Treble/Bass controls, which are fed straight into the gain stage(!). Pile them into the gain past 2:00 and it really drives hard, yet as the title goes it has the potential to just the same maintain a decent amount of clarity. Great for Strat/Tele bridge pu'ps in my book, and has a number of usable settings based on where you EQ it in relation to how much you have the gain up...And how hot the volume is to push the amp. For the most part, on subtler settings it sounds like the breakup of the amp plus a very musical crunch addition, yet clear enough to work for mild alt-rock/country/60s jangle rock etc without sounding nasal. That said, if you max the treble and bass controls into the gain set fairly high, you get a curious imitation of a "dimed amp with fuzzy overtones", what the manual dares to describe as "Woman Tone" on neck pickup... Mr. Clapton may shake his head, but you get the idea of what it's made to hint at... In other words, way more gain(though entirely not all what many would prefer) on tap than a Bad Monkey. True bypass is a nice addition as well.

 

Two very different pedals. For a basic rhythm OD with a good amount of flexibility, its definitely the Trans OD hands down. For feeding into a nice dirtbox for solos and throwing nasal chunks, teh Monkeyz.

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