10 Best Distortion Pedals 2020

"This site contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links."

Choosing a distortion pedal is a fun and exciting moment for any rock or metal guitar player. Adding distortion to your sound may not turn you into a rock star overnight, but it will definitely help you sound more like your favourite metal gods. However, as exciting as it may seem, it may turn into an overwhelming decision real fast.

Distortion pedals come in various models and brands, so finding the perfection one isn’t always easy. With many different aspects such as different types of knobs, inputs, constructions and even bypass features, you may find yourself in over your head. No need to worry though because we have done all of the research for you and present you with the best distortion pedal list on the internet.

Top 10 Distortion Pedal Overview Chart

PictureNamePriceRating (1-5)
Rating (1-5)
1. MXR M75 Super Badass® Distortion$$$$4.9
2. Boss DS-2 Turbo Distortion Pedal$$$4.7
3. DigiTech TL-2 HardWire Metal Distortion Extreme-Performance Pedal$$$$4.7
4. Pro Co RAT2 Distortion Pedal$$$4.5
5. Boss MT-2 Metal Zone Distortion Guitar Pedal$$$4.4
6. Boss DS1 Distortion Guitar Pedal$$4.4
7. Donner Morpher High Degree Distortion Guitar Effects$$4.3
8. Donner Giant Metal Boost Distortion of Adjustable Meatl Sound with 3 Modes$$4.3
9. Joyo JF-03 Crunch Distortion Guitar Pedal$$4.3

How to Shop for a Distortion Pedal

Finding the perfect distortion pedal for your specific needs isn’t always an easy task to complete. With many different factors to consider, the purchasing process can sometimes feel overwhelming. Whether this is your first guitar pedal or even if you already have tons of other pedals in your setup, you’ll want to consider a few things before making a commitment.

Knowing what to look for and what makes a good distortion pedal great is crucial to finding the best distortion pedal for your needs. We have made a list of some important things to consider when shopping for distortion pedals.

  • Knobs. The knobs found on a distortion pedal will vary from one pedal to another, but it’s important to at least have the basics. Knobs give you control over the resulting sound. You will at the very least want to have low, mid and high (sometimes called treble, mid, bass) knobs. Some pedals offer a distortion knob, allowing you to control the intensity of the distortion.
  • True Bypass. True bypass pedals allow you to benefit from pure signal output at all times. Some pedals don’t have this feature and it causes the pedal to continuously suck out some of your guitar’s tone even when in the off position. When true bypass pedals are in the off position, they take zero signal.
  • Robust Design. While most pedals are created with robust designs, some are not. It’s important to purchase a distortion pedal that is made from a solid construction, due to the heavy wear most pedals have to deal with. A robust design also makes it easy for you to carry the pedal around with you everywhere you play without having to worry about damaging it.
  • Battery & Plug. When purchasing a pedal, you’ll want to ensure that it comes with both options; the ability to plug it in and the ability to power it with a battery. Having both options provides you with the freedom to use your pedal everywhere and at all times. If your pedal runs low on batteries, just plug it in. On the flip side, if not electrical outlets are nearby, just use battery power.

While knowing how to find the best pedals for distortion purposes isn’t always simple, it should always remain a fun and exciting task. We want to make the process a lot easier on your by providing you with 5 reviews of the top distortion pedals currently available on the market.

Top 5 Best Distortion Pedal Reviews

1. MXR M75 Super Badass®

At the top of our list of distortion pedals is the MXR M75 Super Badass Distortion Effects Pedal. With a great amount of distortion that rips through your ears as you strum every note, this pedal is well deserving of the first spot. Independent equalizer knobs allow you to fully control the lows, mids and highs with ease. Plus, with a distortion knob, you’ll easily be able to control the overall intensity of the distortion.

The MXR M75 Super Badass pedal also comes with an output knob, allowing you to control the volume of the pedal’s output. With true bypass technology, you won’t have to worry about losing any signal when the pedal is not in use. A sturdy housing and durable components make this pedal strong and capable of handling many intense nights of rock.

If you’re looking for an outstanding distortion pedal for your guitar, you won’t want to miss out on the MXR M75 Super Badass Distortion Effects Pedal. This pedal creates amazing tones and provides you with all the control you could possibly need.

2. Boss DS-2 Turbo

As one of the better known brands when it comes to guitar pedals, Boss delivers again with their DS-2 Turbo Distortion Pedal. This pedal rocks the house with strong distortions that make your guitar scream. Knobs include an equalizer so you can control highs and lows, a volume level knob, a distortion intensity knob and a unique turbo knob.

This pedal is versatile and can provide guitarists with the ability to play numerous different music genres. Whether you want to achieve a blues tone or even if you want a heavy rock and roll lead guitar sound, this pedal makes it happen. With a robust construction and durable components, this pedal will easily last you several years.

If you’re looking for a high quality guitar pedal that packs a ton of versatility into a durable construction, you’ll certainly want to consider the Boss DS-2 Turbo Distortion Pedal.

3. DigiTech TL-2 HardWire Metal

When it comes to finding the perfect heavy metal sound, not just any pedal will offer what you’re looking for. Fortunately, the DigiTech TL-2 HardWire Metal Distortion Extreme-Performance Pedal provides you with a great heavy metal tone that created by raw gain. With two unique high-gain amp circuits, you’ll be able to find the best settings regardless of your guitar’s tuning or your metal genre.

As an extremely durable pedal that was built with metalheads in mind, this pedal is not for the weak at heart. Offering massive amounts of distortion and sustain, you’ll love the DigiTech TL-2 HardWire Metal Distortion Extreme-Performance pedal if you love heavily distorted tones.

4. Pro Co RAT2

If you’re looking for a high quality distortion pedal that provides you with arena rhythms and soaring rock lead tones, you’ll absolutely love the Pro Co RAT2 Distortion Pedal. With a distinct distortion knob, you will easily be able to control the intensity of the distortion. Plus, with a dedicated volume and filter knob, controlling the output of this pedal is easier than ever.

Made from a solid construction, this distortion pedal is incredible durable and can withstand a ton of wear. Get the extra kick you need while soloing by adding the Pro Co RAT2 Distortion Pedal to your setup.

5. Boss MT-2 Metal Zone

With a heavy focus on metal tones, the MT-2 Metal Zone Distortion Guitar Pedal by Boss is one of the best metal pedals you’ll find on the market. With an incredibly solid construction and durable components, you won’t easily damage this pedal. This pedal provides amazing sustain along with impressive distortion that allows you to recreate the tone found in stacks of overdriven amps.

This pedal provides you with tons of control due to the 3-band equalizer. If you’re looking for an amazing metal distortion pedal, you’ll strongly want to consider the versatile Boss MT-2 Metal Zone Distortion Guitar Pedal.