Enhance Pedal Power with the Best Pedals for Acoustic Guitar
You may play the acoustic guitar well enough for you to earn kudos all around, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need pedals. It’s exciting to shape the tone of your guitar in different ways and pedal power does that for you. A tuner is the first pedal you would need because you can quickly tune your guitar at any point in time. An equalizer and a reverb pedal would be handy when you want to dial in the sound you need for your performance. Throw in a chorus and a delay or loop pedal and you’re ready to go. Let’s look at the best pedals for acoustic guitars.
Rather than having a clip-on tuner hanging down the headstock, it’s nice to have a pedal tuner. This one scored high on quality, accuracy, and flexibility. Though the pedal is a little pricey, it produces premium acoustic guitar tones while suppressing the feedback. It’s also simple to operate and as it has a provision to switch phases, tuning is simplified to a great extent. Polytune 2 allows you to tune your guitar with just a single strum and in just a minute you know which strings are in tune and which are not. The bright LED readouts tell you the extent to which each string is tuned and if need be, you can adjust it in no time. This one is a must have, especially if you give many live performances. The first one on our list of best pedals for acoustic guitars.
If you can’t afford the pricey Polytune 2, settle for this more affordable chromatic tuner. This is robust and sturdy and it gives you three bass modes, 3 guitar modes, and a chromatic setting. No matter what kind of tuning you are looking for, TU300 will get you there in no time. Once you press the footswitch, tuning begins and the LED bright display indicates the note its reading. The tuner has an out jack that disconnects you from the amp while tuning. It also has a bypass function that enables silent tuning. A great feature that TU300 has is that it can tell you the note you are playing -this comes in handy while tuning.
Like most MXR products, M-109, encased in a metal casing is sturdy and well built. It is a 6 band graphic EQ pedal, and that is more than adequate for live performances. You get all the control you need with no redundancy. This EQ pedal can be powered either by 9V battery or an external AC adapter.
Though it doesn’t have an overall volume slider, it comes with 6 lighted sliders that can either boost or cut frequency by 18dB. Sometimes the LED sliders become dim but on a dark stage, they look great. It is lightweight, weighs just about a pound and has a mono input and a mono output. M-109 can be used either to remove quack from a heavy guitar, unmuffle distortion in an amp, to shape the overall tone or boost signals. There is no hiss or hum when this pedal is in operation. The pedal is reliable and durable and built to withstand rough journeys. It’s compact and can adjust EQ, match input signals from various guitars and also to achieve a Lo-Fi Tone.
The pedal may look small but it’s a powerful tool to have in your guitar set up. It’s capable of meeting all the frequency ranges and has a true bypass that ensures zero loss of tone.
Regarded as one of the most popular reverb pedals, the TC Electronic Hall of Fame 2 is a TonePrint enabled reverb pedal that delivers “new shimmer reverb algorithms”. These algorithms have the power to create ethereal effects and have been found to suit many ambient styles such as worship and shoegaze. A pressure-sensitive footswitch can double up as an expression pedal and control reverb. The most notable feature though is that the pedal has three slots for TonePrint presets- this means at any point of time you have three tailored reverb effects on hand. You can use the TonePrint app to download presets or the software that allows you to create your own presets. New TonePrints can be beamed to the pedal using the pickups of your guitar. A true bypass allows flexibility of pedalboard.
Made in the USA, this bypass pedal delivers a ‘chorus’ tone that’s rich, analog and organic. The chorus effect works well for lead and rhythm, provides the correct modulation and it doesn’t alter the volume of the signal. This effect is great for acoustic guitars. It’s flexible and has a unique tone that makes the pedal rather distinctive. Encased in a nickel steel case, this pedal is great for experimenting with effects. It is also reliable, durable and sturdy enough to take a beating. It uses a 9V battery or a DC-200 power supply. Besides a toggle footswitch, it is equipped with a single control knob, a single 2-way switch, an input, and output jack and an LED status indicator. It is aesthetically appealing and a pedal you can count on to do what you want it to do. If you need a chorus, then this is one great pedal you can add to your arsenal.
Going a step further, if you want to combine chorus with vibrato, then you can opt for famous BOSS CE-2 and CE-1 pedals.
Fishman Aura Spectrum DI is hailed by guitarists as a functional acoustic guitar pedal that combines basic tools with modern digital audio modeling. In fact, the highlight of this pedal is its Aura Acoustic Imaging technology, which shapes tone into almost any built-in modeled acoustic guitar. This pedal has its own effects loop and images can be downloaded via the built-in USB. The pedal is solidly constructed and comes with a chromatic tuner, a compressor, a balanced XLR DI out and a 3-band EQ. Feedback is automatically suppressed.
Although there are some pedals that players should own at some time or another, this one is a must. With 14 seconds of loop time, great delay settings, flexible onboard looping functions, repeat, and mix controls and a great loop station, you can experiment and layer as creatively as you like. This makes it ideal for live performances and also practice sessions at home. This versatile pedal can deliver 16 different styles of delay- more than the number of delay styles you are likely to explore, makes it popular and much sought after. One of the best pedals for acoustic guitars.
In addition to the standard delay controls, the DL4 is also equipped with a couple of parameter control knobs that allow players to control different modulations for different delay types. Coupled with an external compression pedal and stereo output options, the possibilities of exploring with delay effects seem to be immense. There is a provision to save 3 of your settings and control them with three switches. You have the option to choose from the 18 factory presets that the DL4 comes with.
This is one pedal that most acoustic guitar players will swear by as it performs as a great equalizer and booster pedal without drastically coloring tone. It’s ideal for solo performances and is flexible enough to work with electric and bass guitars too. The harmonics control matches the behavior of the pedal to the instrument that is being used. Its low frequency knob allows you to control the audio and makes the lows sound more defined and louder. The high frequency knob acts as a high pass filter. Acting in conjunction with the boost knob, both the filters enhance clarity, bring out the playing nuances and add a tightness to the guitar sound leaving the tone intact. Though the knobs appear to cause confusion, once you start using the pedal, it easy sailing.
A decent volume pedal available in a compact size, the VP Jr. is a mono device with one input and one output. This could be a slight disadvantage if you like to work with a dual amp set as two devices cannot be connected to the pedal. There is a separate tuner though that allows keeping your guitar properly tuned all the times. It is a simple device like all other volume pedals, looks elegant and is available at a reasonable price. Though this pedal lacks a minimum volume control, the lower price makes up for it. The Ernie Ball VP Jr. features in the best pedals for acoustic guitars and is a useful pedal for players to have.
Owning a multi-effects pedal could be a good option as it allows players to alter effects as if they were using separate pedals. Though they don’t offer the same flexibility and versatility of individual pedals, multi-effects pedals can be helpful when you play on a worship team or in a cover band as the whole pedalboard consists of just a single unit.
In conclusion, there are several pedals out there that fall into the best pedals for acoustic guitars and you’re spoilt for choice. Before buying pedals, learn about guitar effects and the impact they have on sound. Once you’re grounded there, choosing a pedal might be just that much easier. Use pedals wisely and also choose the right pedal- one that suits your instrument and your temperament.