A Classic Twosome
These days, there are a plethora of overdrive choices to choose from and the Bondi Effects Del Mar overdrive stands high with the best of them. This golden beauty will bring you to your knees with a rich, dynamic and versatile overdrive you won’t be able to switch off.
Tried and True
Jon Ashley at Bondi Effects is already well known for the polished and popular Sick As overdrive. The Sick As is a transparent overdrive that boasts lush and versatile tones while the Del Mar features the same qualities but in the form of a ‘classic’ overdrive. The Del Mar was built with the tube-screamer and blues-breaker circuits in mind and that’s exactly what you get – an overdrive that is sensitive enough to pull off those tasty blues licks but has enough kick to hurl your gat into rock mode.
Another great thing about the Del Mar is the quality of parts. It has great jacks, the pots and switches look and feel incredible and the paint job is durable and elegant.
Not Just A Pretty Face
For me, the best feature about the Del Mar is its versatility. Its versatility comes from two things. First, inside the pedal is a voltage doubler which turns this 9V pedal into an 18V one, providing more dynamics, headroom and clarity. Secondly, the bass and treble tone controls are active and both give +/-15db of boost or cut, giving you incredible control over the tone of the overdrive or even your guitar.
When you wind the gain all the way back, you get a spotless clean boost and implementing the tone controls can even allow the Del Mar to act as a clean boost/EQ pedal. When I cranked the gain up to 12 o’clock at unity playing my Telecaster Thinline, out the other end came a smooth and sensitive overdrive that responded beautifully to every quirk and nuance in my playing. It was very reminiscent of the John Mayer tone many guitarists have come to know and love. Turn the gain up some more and you start to head into AC/DC territory. A powerful tone rich with harmonic content that sounds like it’s coming straight from your tubes.
The Del Mar also features a two-voice clipping switch. Flicking the switch down will give you a flatter EQ with an emphasis on highs, while flicking the switch up will produce a more compressed sound with emphasis on mids.
Take My Money!
The Del Mar by Bondi Effects is a truly amazing overdrive pedal that stands out from the endless sea of overdrives out there, and with its versatility you get a whole lot of value for a very reasonable price. So stop reading and go buy one already!
- Clean boost and overdrive (classic overdrive)
- 18V voltage doubler and active tone pots, giving you great versatility, headroom and clarity
- Two unique voices of overdrive
- Very responsive to your playing and great dynamics that feel natural
- Great visuals, high quality parts and soft touch bypassing
Written by Aaron Clarke for Signal Chain
Avid effects aficionado
I have an overdrive addiction. It's a well known fact that this condition affects just about every electric guitarist.
Another well known fact is that the overdrive market within the guitar community is over-saturated, and there is no denying that. But the countless amount of overdrive pedals available leave us with a fantastic opportunity to craft the most precise tone we could ever imagine. Why have one overdrive, when you can have two or three engaged at the same time, sparking an inconceivable version of illustrious tone? Not too long ago I was chasing a third overdrive to help thicken my wall of sound. Now I know that some of you will be reading this thinking “how the hell does he need three overdrive pedals engaged at once!?”. Well, let me give you a quick run down why…
I’m currently splitting my guitar signal three ways. Stereo amps and octave to DI. I’ve got 2 overdrives on my Fender Hot Rod Deville 212 for ‘dirty’ sounds, and a clean Vox AC30. Here’s where I needed to get my fix; I needed to attach a third overdrive to the AC30. You know, just to really stick it to the proverbial guitar tone therapists. So I went out and purchased the Del Mar overdrive from Bondi Effects.
Modelled after the legendary Tubescreamer circuit I was expecting nothing less than extraordinary, and that’s exactly what I got, an extraordinary pedal. Encased in a fabulous golden shell the Del Mar exudes class and precision with an awesome range of features to boot. The internal voltage booster is one of the features that really sets this pedal apart from it’s other counterparts. Kicking the voltage from 9V to 18V means that you have a phenomenal amount of head room to play with. Enough head room for even the most boisterous of overdrive addicts to discover their perfect fix. You’ve also got this remarkable little toggle switch in the middle of the pedal. Keep that in the ‘up’ position and you’ve got a mid-based scream, capable of cutting through the filthiest of mixes. Put that toggle switch in the ‘down’ position and you’ve got a really clear, bass-driven, open sound. Perfect for delivering soaring rises of angelic tone. Combine this with the 4 band EQ at your disposal (Level, Gain, Bass & Treble) and you’re looking at, arguably, one of the best overdrive pedals on the market.
With something as incredibly versatile as this, you could almost do away with all your other overdrive pedals.
Don’t listen to me though, I’m still an overdrive addict and I’m still running three overdrive pedals. Tone lovers rejoice!
Written by Joshua Brown for Signal Chain
Self confessed pedal addict