just a quick note. I'm really stoked about this thing. I have not played through another pedal that gets cranked amp tones like this. I'm getting some great SRV El Macambo type tones out of the clean channel (really gorgeous with a tube screamer) and dumble/bonamassa tones out of the lead channel.
I did not like the GSB. I'm going to be reviewing a lovepedal 200lbs of tone which seems to be in a similar territory. I have not tried a GSR but at this point with the Ethos, the BB Preamp and my vaughnc modded ts9 I think i'm done with overdrive pedals. The BB preamp gets 90% of the zendrive tone. It does not have the mid-hump that the dumble amps get and that the zendrive has but it is also less colored and more versatile. I can get just a slightly overdriven tone that sounds like you are driving a marshall amp hard or I can turn up the gain and get a more robben-like sound (minus the hump).
The Ethos combines those tones into one pedal. Instead of choosing whether I want a slightly overdrive amp sound or a higher gain violin tone, I can get both out of the same pedal and depending on whether I turn up the midrange or engage the modern/classic switch I can get a more clear or more colored dirty sound. The clean tone is cool because it gets that wonderful mayeresque semi-distorted strat tone and does an amazing SRV Lenny thing. Better than *ANY* pedal I have tried. Even better than the BB which surprised me. And my tube screamer in front of that gets the texas flood tone. Very cool. I think you could use this pedal rig in front of a transistor amp and be very happy with it.
The whole rig sounds great in front of my Axefx or my Allen old Flame.
Hey Jack! REALLY glad your review is backing up what I think! HANDS DOWN the best pedal I have ever used, and I would think many would be hard pressed to tell it from the real thing. I have the standard model, and love it so much, I ordered the TLE so I would have a matching "set".
Agree with you alo about the clean channel. It totally changes the tone of fender amp to a Dumble clean, without losing any magic!