Vox V850

March 14, 2005

This no-frills pedal sports a traditional look and a classy two-tone color scheme. Weighing a hefty 3.4 lbs, the American-made V850’s cast-iron housing renders it virtually indestructible, and the minimal circuitry inside is cleanly wired and firmly attached. The pedal’s feel will be familiar to anyone who has ever used a vintage wah, and like a wah, which is usually designed to cover its full range quickly, the V850 goes from silent to full volume with just a slight shift of the pedal. Despite the limited range, the volume actually increases in a very smooth and linear way.

As with the other passive pedals, I noticed nearly undetectable tone sucking while playing through the amps, and a slight amount of noise during the white glove test (the noise actually increased with the pedal up, so go figure)—but in terms of having a practical impact on performance, particularly live rather than in the studio, both of these factors were negligible. This is a solid, quiet, utilitarian pedal that does the job well and will probably last into the next century.

KUDOS Indestructible casing. Classic feel.

CONCERNS Limited range. Barely detectable tone sucking. Slight mechanical noise.

Price $99 retail/$69 street

CONTACT Vox, (631) 390-6500

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