This thing is noisier than a Slayer gig! All right, that's slight exaggeration, but it does give off a LOT of noise, my Metal Zone has about double the gain and half the noise. That gripe apart, it does sound good. I use this for a thick, heavy grunge sound, which I need for certain songs. I can get a good Soundgarden sound with this and other people have used this for a Korn type sound, which I really don't want! I wouldn't recommend this for someone who wants to play 'proper' metal, like Machine Head or Pantera, go for a Boss Metal Zone or Rocktron Rampage. My style is Goth/Doom metal blended with thrash and heavier grunge music. I use an Ibanez RG with DiMarzio Evolutions and this thing sounds very thick with it, which is what I wanted. It was my first distortion pedal, a couple of years back, when I used a terrible Strat copy and a cacky amp, now it is still in my setup but is used less as my style (and technique) has evolved greatly. It sounds really good with a Les Paul as well, but single coils don't sound a great as I thought when this was all I had! The speaker simulation jack is crap, by the way.
It's a big hunk of metal, and the knobs seem solid enough. It's lasted me for about 2 years with no problems, but I don't really stomp on this the way I would a Boss or Rocktron, due to the plastic switch. I would gig without a backup, but change the battery beforehand.
It's got a good sound, but is very noisy. Fortunately I have a Rocktron HUSH rack, which deals with this. I hear it has been deleted, but if you can get hold of one, I would recommend it. These days it is not a vital part of my setup, but is still used and when it comes out, it fits the song perfectly. Something which I think sounds really cool, if you're interested, is a slow sliding power chord, like low F to G and back, with the gain on full. I really like that sound. Happy hunting.