Carl Martin AC-Tone

Vox AC30 tone in a stompbox? You guessed it, and the AC-Tone ($300 retail/$209 street) offers two footswitchable channels along with a variable boost function that provides up to 20dB of gain. In a slightly odd sequence, you have to first click on the Drive button to activate Gain 1 (ostensibly for your rhythm tone), and then you hit the Select switch to activate Gain 2 for lead.

The Cut knob adjusts the overall brightness, and if you need more volume to make a solo punch through, just hit the Boost switch. The Boost function also works independently of the Gain controls, which is cool if you just want to bump up your guitar signal without adding grind. But distortion is this pedal’s forte, and the AC-Tone does a great job of emulating the torrent of harmonics you get from an overdriven AC30. And with so much more gain on tap, it’s a great option if you’re looking to elicit the intense, shimmering rage you get by putting an overdrive pedal in front of a real AC30. —Art Thompson

Easy way to add Vox-style overdrive to your amp. Responds dynamically to changes in guitar volume. Built-in power supply.


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