Boss SD-1 or Bad Monkey........Do you have a preference?

jimmyohio75

Member
Messages
5,538
I am looking for a cheap overdrive to add to my pedalboard. I would like to tighten up my already overdriven Dual Terror. I also want to be able to add some volume and girth for solos. Which of these two will do this the best?
 

mcnabbanov

Member
Messages
1,821
i like the bad monkey over the SD-1.

but as far as cheap ODs go the Boss OD-3 is my favorite. should look into that
 
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3,823
if you're looking for decent overdrives on the cheap, you could also look into Joyo pedals. they have a couple of decent overdrives:

Vintage Overdrive (tube screamer clone), and Ultimate Drive (OCD clone)

you can get these for under 40 bucks for each.
 

snow and steel

Silver Supporting Member
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7,002
The Bad Monkey is a no brainer on any SD as far as I'm concerned.

I am digging my soul food though for what its worth.
 

thecornman

Member
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2,353
I am a big Boss fan, but do like the Bad Monkey better then the SD-1 myself. The OD-3 is my favorite od pedal though, but it is a totally different thing then those two. Another great cheap tubescreamer type pedal out there is the Biyang Baby Boom Mad Driver.
 

Holzar1988

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,796
It's surprising how useful separate bass and treble controls are on the Bad Monkey. I've had both an unmodded one and a JHS-modded one. The later is nice in that it's very quiet, though I'm not sure the tone is as radically different as JHS's marketing makes it out to be. Great pedal, though. Also, it stacks, really, really well with other drives. I keep trying to replace it, and keep missing the way it stacks better than almost anything else I've tried.

Haven't played an SD-1, so forgive the lack of comparison.
 
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1,454
Stock vs. stock, the Bad Monkey wins, hands down. However, there's no reason I would ever own another stock SD-1, as they are one of the easiest pedals to mod, have so many mods to choose from readily available, and sound 1000% better when modded. A well-modded SD-1 beats a stock Bad Monkey like a drum. A Bad Monkey can be modded as well, but it's trickier to do on your own unless you've got a good steady soldering hand.
 
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yeah, the Bad Monkey is definitely a low gain OD for sure, but its very, very smooth. I use it for stacking purposes, right before my Tight Metal, and it works like a charm.
 

Belmont

Member
Messages
3,465
I didn't like the Bad Monkey, it smothered my tone, too murky and round. some people like that, not me.
I like the bass cut in the SD-1, I use it to push a driven Marshall and it never sounds bloated, it's merely a boost.
if you want to actually hear the pedal and not boost an amp, at low volumes the Bad Monkey might be preferable.
 

dancehall

Member
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1,929
I preferred the SD-1. Found the Bad Monkey very disappointing. But they're different pedals. The SD-1 has a much sharper edge, a bite. If you want smooth, go Bad Monkey.
 

Holzar1988

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,796
I agree with some of the adjectives that have been used here to describe the Bad Monkey: "murky," "round" and "smooth." I'd agree that it's all those things, and that, somewhat alchemically, they're strangely helpful as a gain stage into a gainier pedal. Alone into a clean or only slightly overdriven amp, the BM almost has an Eric Johnsony kind of feel to it, in a very rough sense. I realize that using the phrases "Eric Johnson" and "Bad Monkey" in the same sentence may elicit howls of derision, but I'd stand by that statement. It's not agressive at all, but smooth and round (and a bit muddy) almost to a fault.

And yet ...

I recently got a Keeley Ibanez TS9DX, assuming it would stomp the Monkey into smithereens. It didn't, really. Even with all the TSD9DX's myriad settings, I think I still prefer what the Monkey does as a booster gain stage. I keep swapping them back and forth, and every time I come back to the Bad Monkey, I just like it better.
 

Jimtherocker

Member
Messages
60
I have both on my board- and yes I have a preference. I like the SD-1 a lot more and lean on it much more for what/how I play. However, from your description of what you want, the bad monkey is probably the better fit.

As dancehall said, the SD-1 has a “much sharper edge, a bite” - that’s what I love about it- to me it imparts a sort of pleasing graininess as a main drive sound. I use the bad monkey as more of a slightly dirty boost, but that’s what your comment about “volume and girth” makes me think of. Mucking around at home, I will stomp the SD-1 on and off, switch between that, the bad monkey or fuzz, or stack various combinations and enjoy them all. When I play with others, I have the SD-1 on about 80% of the time - it just seems to sit right in the mix with my church band context- and don’t really end up using or needing the bad monkey.
 

Jonny D

Member
Messages
1,283
Stock vs. stock, the Bad Monkey wins, hands down. However, there's no reason I would ever own another stock SD-1, as they are one of the easiest pedals to mod, have so many mods to choose from readily available, and sound 1000% better when modded. A well-modded SD-1 beats a stock Bad Monkey like a drum. A Bad Monkey can be modded as well, but it's trickier to do on your own unless you've got a good steady soldering hand.
There is the truth.
Stock the Bad Monkey wins easily simply because of increased flexibility.
I have a Allums Modded SD-1 that does it one better and sounds really nice and clear and has a better bass response.

In the end, I really use these two for different things. I use the Bad Monkey as a great boost and EQ built together which makes any other pedal better and more flexible. I use the SD-1 to add its edge and flavor to other things in a good way.

I would agree that the OD-3 beats them both for me.
 

Purplexi

Member
Messages
2,150
You guys are making me miss my MIJ OD3, darn it. I grew quickly tired of what the SD-1 did to my tone. I replaced it with MXR's ZW44 OD, or "Wylde Overdrive", the Dunlop modded SD-1. It has it's drawbacks, such as noise at full vol, but it still has better sound than the Boss IMO. It also stacks really well with my Bad Monkey. After hanging out here too much, I'm thinking of getting serious, and buying me a Timmy. I'm also on the new Klon waiting list, so don't try and get me started over the Vemuram Jan Ray!
 




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