Maxon DS-830 Distortion Master


  • Gain
    controls the amount of distortion
  • Bass
    controls the amount of low frequencies
  • Treble
    controls the amount of high frequencies
  • Level
    controls the output volume



After decades of research, Maxon has created the ultimate distortion pedal. The DS-830 Distortion Master was designed to act as a versatile distortion unit with high sound pressure and powerful low range at any volume level. With the DS-830, even the smallest transistor amplifier can have the presence and authority of a full stack, and it will turn a full stack into a wrecking ball.

There really aren't any secrets to the DS-830's massive tone ­ just gain, and lot's of it. The DS-830 can provide up to 59 dB of crushing boost that will work equally well to overdrive amps or deafen audience members in the first five rows. But don't mistake the DS-830 for a one-trick pony - Low gain settings yield fat, buttery overdrive tones that are pleasantly reminiscent of a 6L6 amp being pushed hard. Even with all this power the DS-830 maintains a keen dynamic responsiveness, cleaning up beautifully at the roll of your instrument's volume knob.

With such large amounts of gain on hand, it's easy for your guitar's tone to get buried underneath the sound of the effect. The DS-830 prevents this with a specially tuned, dual control tone circuit. While most other distortion pedals adopt an ordinary inductor coil and capacitor for their tone circuit, the DS-830 uses a transistor (Toshiba #2SC1815) as a simulated inductor in place of the standard coil. This ingenious component substitution helps make the DS-830's tone circuit smaller and quieter than other pedals. It also allows for precision tuning of the DS-830's bottom to be punchy and tight without ever getting muddy or non-descript. The resulting tone is perfect for adding extra low-end beef to the sound of an EL34 powered amplifier.

If you require the most powerful distortion without compromising your guitar's tone, the DS-830 Distortion Master is the only alternative.

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  • Input Impedance
    500K Ohms
  • Output Impedance
    10K Ohms or less
  • Equivalent Input Noise
    -114 dB (VR Max)
  • Residual Noise
    -110 dB (Level, VR Min)
  • Maximum Gain
    +59 dB (VR Max) (At 1 KHz)
  • Power Supply
    9V Manganese dry cell battery (S-006P) or special AC adaptor
  • Power Voltage
    DC9 V (Battery) / DC10 V (AC-adaptor)
  • Current Consumption
    8 mA (9 V)
  • Dimensions (whole)
    117 mm (W) x 150 mm (D) x 60 mm (H)
  • Weight 500 g

Where to find one?

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