Keeley Electronics Noble Screamer Overdrive Pedal Review
Keeley Electronics Noble Screamer: Your Versatile Overdrive Companion
If you're on the hunt for a pedal that offers flexibility, precision, and great tone, Keeley Electronics’ Noble Screamer is here. Before we get into the nitty-gritty, let's talk about some of the features that we believe set the Noble Screamer apart. 
Dual Circuit Controls:
The Tone Switch provides two unique choices. In the 'OD Position,' it delivers a 'Spectrum' style tone control, granting you the ability to mold your tone from a flat EQ to one enriched with heightened treble and bass characteristics. In contrast, switching to the 'TS Position' introduces a Low Pass Filter that attenuates the high frequencies.
Killer Versatility:
Modeled after the legendary Nobels ODR-1 and the Ibanez Tube Screamer, this pedal is all about versatility. It has four distinct Overdrive and Boost sounds, allowing you to combine the best parts of these pedals in a new, unique way.
Switching between the bypass modes is also a breeze. You can choose between Silent Buffered Bypass or True Bypass by simply holding down the footswitch. No more annoying pops – your tone stays pristine whether the pedal is on or off, thanks to the “Vitamin K Infused” Buffer. With the Noble Screamer, it’s all about keeping things intact and letting your playing shine, distraction free.
When it comes to achieving the tone you want, let’s face it- the choice of gear plays a pivotal role. If you're fortunate enough to play a guitar with naturally bright tonal characteristics, such as a Stratocaster or a Telecaster, you'll find that this particular pedal works wonders in preserving and accentuating the qualities you already love while gently smoothing out any aspects that may not quite hit the mark for your preferred sound.
On the flip side, if you've got a guitar with a thicker, more substantial sound profile, perhaps one equipped with humbuckers or P90’s like a Les Paul or an SG, this pedal steps up to the plate in an entirely different way. These guitars are known for their inherent grit and "oomph," but sometimes you might want to fine-tune that raw power.
In this scenario, the pedal becomes your versatile overdrive companion. It can enhance those gritty, thicker qualities you love, pushing your guitar's sound even further. On the other hand, if you're in the mood for a smoother and more refined take on your instrument's naturally robust character, this pedal can help to tame the beast. It allows you to chisel away the excess while preserving the core of what makes your guitar so loveable. Since versatility is why we think this pedal is a standout, let’s jump into how versatile it can be with some of our favorite setting choices:
Don’t Scream Too Loud-
  • TONE: 1 o’clock
  • DRIVE: 10 o’clock
  • LEVEL: noon
If you're seeking a rich and lush Tube Screamer-style setting, something in this vicinity is your best bet. What sets it apart from merely sounding like a Tube Screamer is your ability to toggle either the Level or Drive settings to the OD stack, allowing you to mix and match sounds and truly delve into tailoring the Noble Screamer for any environment where you might want to either blend in or stand out.
Did Someone Order an ODR-1?
  • TONE: 1 o’clock
  • DRIVE: noon
  • LEVEL: noon
As someone familiar with the ODR-1 might guess, this setting is a tad thicker than the previous one. It can work wonders in smoothing out twangy-sounding instruments, enhancing the already beefy ones, or allowing your tone to shine through by adding some drive. It also lends itself nicely to playing a couple of AC/DC riffs, but I won't twist your arm. This particular setting is beautifully modified when you crank up the drive knob, showcasing the grit it can achieve when necessary.
Let That Amp Stretch Its Legs, Baby
  • TONE: 3 o’clock
  • DRIVE: 6 o’clock
  • LEVEL: 4 o’clock
On top of its ability to enhance the experience of combining two already amazing pedals, when used correctly, the Noble Screamer can also serve as a fantastic transparent boost. This is achieved by keeping the Tone and Drive knobs set to lower levels, and increasing the Level knob to push your amp's natural sound. This approach drives the speakers you're playing through while adding a subtle coloration that might not have been present without the assistance of our friends at Keeley.
Final Thoughts:
When it comes to usability, Keeley Electronics has kept things simple. The controls – Level, Drive, Tone, Clipping, and the Tone Switch – are straightforward and intuitive, making it easier for you to spend more time playing and less time tweaking. It also looks very cool, quite simply put. Keeley’s Noble Screamer is a versatile and feature-rich tool that delivers a wide range of overdrive tones with precision. In essence, this pedal is a versatile sonic magician, capable of tailoring your guitar's tone to your exact specifications, whether you're playing a bright and lively Stratocaster or a powerhouse Les Paul. It can help you find the full potential of driving your instrument, making sure that your sound always hits the mark, no matter your musical journey. Whether you're looking for a subtle boost or a ripping overdrive, this pedal has you covered, and it’s a valuable addition to any pedalboard.