When searching the market for a distortion pedal, you encounter all sorts of models, brands and models. All of them promise to deliver spectacular quality and performance, but sometimes we still end up with something that does not work for us. Such failure to pick up the right stompbox is followed by frustration and disappointment, however, we cannot always blame the brand for it. All the musicians tend to have different needs and requirements and the pedal that works wonders for me might be a total nonsense to you. This is why you should take these reviews with grain of salt. After all, the process of finding the best distortion pedal is nothing but a trial and error. That does not mean that we should not discuss the units that we think are out of this world. Today I am going to dive into the features, controls and sound of Pro Co RAT2 and give you all the useful information. If you want to read some more about this pedal, just keep on reading!
RAT2 is yet another powerful product from Pro Co. It packs quite an impressive feature set and delivers top-notch performance at an affordable price. This bad boy has an all-analog circuit, which is responsible for the organic tone emitted from the unit. The classic greyish design is topped with indestructible steel chassis, increasing the lifespan and the durability. Plus, the knobs and footswitches are heavy-duty and sturdy. This way you can be sure that nothing will fall off or break mid-performance. This might not seem like a big deal, but it is an important factor to consider, especially if you gig frequently. What is more, RAT2 has glow-in-the-dark writings that are visible even on poorly lit stages. So if anything gets messed up accidentally, you will be able to notice it right away and act accordingly. This pedal can be powered with batteries or power supply. Just keep in mind that your typical adapter will not fit in, so you will have to purchase a RPS-1 power supply (or something similar). But the good thing is that battery compartment can be opened without any tools, making the access rather easy and fast. RAT2 is a bit big in size and it might be hard to place on your pedalboard, but trust me, if you make some space for this fella, you will not regret it. After all, it combines versatility and simple operation and makes the whole experience enjoyable.
The control panel has a simple design that is quite typical for distortion pedals. The three knobs that are mounted on the top of the unit modify various parameters of your sound without making artificial adjustments. Everything blends with your signal perfectly and the end result is scrupulous, well-defined sound. The knobs themselves have quite a good quality and rotate smoothly. Even though tweaking this bad boy will take you just couple of minutes, you can achieve diverse results with every twist. Let’s continue and explore the functionalities of each knob.
The panel starts with the Distortion encoder, which modifies the intensity and amount of the effect and allows you to add as much distortion as your heart desires. It takes just a slight twist to hear the differences taking place in your signal. If you push it past 3 o’clock you will see what the whole deal was about (more details later). Next we have Filter control, which is one of the distinctive features of RAT pedals. It filters out high-end brittle as you turn it clockwise, but if you rotate it to the left, you will roll off some low-end and intensify the brightness. Last but not least, we have Volume knob, which modifies the level of the output and interacts with Distortion, allowing you to create tailored and well-defined distortion.
First things first, this pedal can be utilized as a single distortion tool with the clean channel of your amp. It will steep your sound with fuzzy character and really let the effect overarch your signal. But you could also pair it with the dirty channel of your amplifier and employ it as a boost to the rest of the chain. Regardless of the operation you choose, Pro Co RAT2 will work wonders. The Filter control balances out your sound very nicely and allows you to eliminate unnecessary trebles if your instrument has high output. It is quite easy to create mellow tones with this knob and enhance the character of your low frequencies. The Distortion maintains well-defined bite and attack with the majority of settings, be it from 9 to noon or from noon to 3 o’clock. The overall nature of Pro Co RAT2 can be described as fuzzy and chaotic (in a good way). Once you learn how to unleash the full potential of this pedal, you will be able to produce a wide variety of distorted sounds. And you could do that without having to worry about undesirable noise and feedback. What’s not to love!
To sum up everything said above, I will just say that Pro Co RAT2 is easily one of the best distortion pedals out there. All the flavors it can emit are fantastic, providing you with numerous choices to work with. As you experiment more and more, you start discovering various sounds that give you spectacular end result. The user-friendly layout of the pedal eliminates the need to scrutinize manuals and saves you a lot of time. Pro Co RAT2 is an amazing choice for almost every genre and will satisfy even the pickiest guitarists. Give it a fair try and see everything yourself. Good luck!
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