The sleek VP Junior offers the same features as EB’s classic Volume Pedal in a slimmed-down housing, including a tuner output and a small 2-way swell switch located just inside the front plate. The VP Junior’s 2.28-lb aluminum extrusion chassis makes for decades of durability, though it leaves the potentiometer and some wiring exposed to the elements (or spilled beer). A pulley mechanism using a Kevlar cable and a steel spring rotates the potentiometer, making a slightly audible sound when it moves.
The VP Junior’s highly efficient design makes it a pleasure to use. There’s little or no play in the action, with volume changes occurring across the entire treadle range, and the swell switch lets you choose between two fairly gradual tapers, with the greatest volume increase occurring either at the beginning or end. No appreciable tone sucking occurred while playing through the amps, though a slight amount of noise was detectable during the white glove test. (Players using active electronics can choose the VP Junior 25K, which uses a 25k potentiometer.) The VP Junior wins an Editors’ Pick Award, and it’s nice to know that no matter how long you own the pedal, the company will refurbish it for a mere $45.
KUDOS Indestructible casing. Tuner output. Adjustable swell rate. No tone sucking.
CONCERNS Potentiometer exposed. Slight mechanical noise.
Price $99 retail/$69 street
CONTACT Ernie Ball, (805) 544-7726