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MF MD HG July Financing 7-22-14

MXR M-181 Bass Blowtorch Overdrive Distortion Pedal  

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#151124000000000
Best Seller

Overview

  • From traditional tube-like growl to full-blown high-gain distortion
  • 18V performance for increased dynamic headroom and clarity
  • Low-noise performance at loud volumes
Description & Specs
  • MSRP:
    $214.28
  • Your Savings:
    - $64.29
  • Your Price:
    $14999

In Stock & Ready To Ship

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MXR

A revolutionary concept in bass overdrive.

The M-181 MXR Bass Blowtorch bass overdrive pedal is made to deliver the hottest sounds this side of Hades--from a tube-like growl to full-blown distorted madness. Because the Bass Blowtorch's overdrive is focused in the midrange frequencies, you'll retain your low-end thunder and high-end sizzle while the overdriven mids cut through any mix. An active 3-band EQ with a mid shift switch provides precise signal balancing, while the Blend knob lets you balance the distortion with the direct signal for the exact tone you're after. 18-volt performance equals increased dynamic headroom, clarity, and low noise no matter the volume level, and true bypass circuitry means it's really off when you want it off, leaving your signal completely unaffected.

Features

  • From traditional tube-like growl to full-blown high-gain distortion
  • 18V performance for increased dynamic headroom and clarity
  • Low-noise performance at loud volumes
  • Active 3-band EQ with 3-position mid shift for precise tone sculpting
  • Distortion and direct signal blending
  • Real-world tested by world-class touring bassists
  • Tough die-cast housing

Your guitarist will burn with envy. Order now!

 
Customer Reviews
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Review Snapshot®

by PowerReviews
MXRM-181 Bass Blowtorch Overdrive Distortion Pedal
 
3.8

(based on 17 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (9)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (2)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Amazingly versatile

Despite what some people have written with regard to the Bass Blowtorch, I will speak from my own personal perspective...

I have now owned 2 MXR Bass Blowtorches. The...Read complete review

Despite what some people have written with regard to the Bass Blowtorch, I will speak from my own personal perspective...

I have now owned 2 MXR Bass Blowtorches. The only reason I purchased a second is that I relocated a great distance and found the need to reduce what I was moving to only the bare essentials. After I settled down, I recognized that this pedal WAS a bare essential, and purchased another.

While this product is appropriately described as a "bass fuzz" [and it does the job with aplomb] it can also be used in more "restrained" and musically usable ways. I have only one bass...a Zon Sonus Special fretless IV...and I play it through the SWR Baby Blue II...and while this core rig is both tone-ful and warm, there are times when I want another color on my palette; one that is a warmer hue of brown, with tubey complexity and nice little overtones. This pedal can absolutely do that, and it does that well. It is extremely musical with subtle settings, and has a very powerful EQ for further tailoring your tone. If you need extra juice, the blowtorch switch is to the right of the pedal and only a tap of the toe away.

With regard to some people's concern with the longevity of the pedal, in my experience, this thing is built like a tank. The switch has a positive tactile click, and has never failed me. The aluminum chassis is as aesthetically pleasing as it robust.

As for some of the other features, I have not used the "thru" jack for amplifying respective effected and clean signals...that being said, I appreciate the design being in place should I ever choose to do that. I use the mid shift feature set to 250Hz most of the time [for a bit more presence in an ensemble setting] but I will use the shift to 750Hz for increased harmonic presence in solo situations. I do not use the 2kHz feature as I feel those frequencies are largely unpleasant, in particular on fretless bass - those frequencies introduce too much string noise and give the notes more of a "pointy-ness" that sacrifices the "bloom" and "mwah" that I seek in my tone.

To give my review proper perspective, I've played bass for 25 years....the last 15 of which have been exclusively fretless. Not only do I play on a semi-professional basis, but I am also a music educator specializing in theory, relative pitch ear training, and improvisational skills. I am a self confessed music nerd, and I am a tone junky. I do not have a big pedalboard [although at one time I had 14 pedals at my feet]. I currently run an NS2 Noise Gate, the MXR Blowtorch, an MXR Bass Envelope Filter, an MXR Bass Octave Deluxe, and a Boss CE3 Compressor. I also run reverb, subtle delays and chorus as necessary through a TC Electronic G Major rack unit.

In my estimation, this is an amazingly versatile unit. It gives me warmth when I want it, and has more gas in the tank if it becomes necessary. It isn't as crunchy as a Big M#ff or an El Grande Bass Fuzz [which I also own, respectfully], but if you want a diverse pedal that can cover lots of ground, or you just like having a few varieties of bass fuzz pedals on your pedal board, this is really the value leader.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

NOT AN OVERDRIVE PEDAL!!!

before you buy this, be aware that it is a fuzz pedal, not an overdrive pedal. i bought it and was extremely disappointed when it arrived, because i could achieve nothing but fuzz...Read complete review

before you buy this, be aware that it is a fuzz pedal, not an overdrive pedal. i bought it and was extremely disappointed when it arrived, because i could achieve nothing but fuzz sounds with it.the idea and construction of the pedal is excellent, but all it gives you is various degrees of buzzy noises. even with the blend knob, you can never get rid of the fuzz. it sounds similar to a Big Muff Pi with the tone knob cranked all the way up, only you can color the sound with more low end, etc. i'm sure some people will like this pedal, and even possibly find a practical use for it, but the 18-volt power requirement and pure lack of sound options to me make this not worth the time or money.if you are into fuzz/distortion sounds, check out the big muffs. if you are looking for an overdrive pedal, stay away from this one.

Reviewed by 17 customers

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(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Amazingly versatile

By IHateUniqueMusicNames

from Columbus, OH

About Me Experienced

Ask me a question

Pros

  • Excellent Sound Quality
  • Good Selection Of Effects
  • Responsive
  • Robust Build
  • Versatile

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Performances
    • Professional Recording
    • Warming Up Tone

    Comments about MXR M-181 Bass Blowtorch Overdrive Distortion Pedal:

    Despite what some people have written with regard to the Bass Blowtorch, I will speak from my own personal perspective...

    I have now owned 2 MXR Bass Blowtorches. The only reason I purchased a second is that I relocated a great distance and found the need to reduce what I was moving to only the bare essentials. After I settled down, I recognized that this pedal WAS a bare essential, and purchased another.

    While this product is appropriately described as a "bass fuzz" [and it does the job with aplomb] it can also be used in more "restrained" and musically usable ways. I have only one bass...a Zon Sonus Special fretless IV...and I play it through the SWR Baby Blue II...and while this core rig is both tone-ful and warm, there are times when I want another color on my palette; one that is a warmer hue of brown, with tubey complexity and nice little overtones. This pedal can absolutely do that, and it does that well. It is extremely musical with subtle settings, and has a very powerful EQ for further tailoring your tone. If you need extra juice, the blowtorch switch is to the right of the pedal and only a tap of the toe away.

    With regard to some people's concern with the longevity of the pedal, in my experience, this thing is built like a tank. The switch has a positive tactile click, and has never failed me. The aluminum chassis is as aesthetically pleasing as it robust.

    As for some of the other features, I have not used the "thru" jack for amplifying respective effected and clean signals...that being said, I appreciate the design being in place should I ever choose to do that. I use the mid shift feature set to 250Hz most of the time [for a bit more presence in an ensemble setting] but I will use the shift to 750Hz for increased harmonic presence in solo situations. I do not use the 2kHz feature as I feel those frequencies are largely unpleasant, in particular on fretless bass - those frequencies introduce too much string noise and give the notes more of a "pointy-ness" that sacrifices the "bloom" and "mwah" that I seek in my tone.

    To give my review proper perspective, I've played bass for 25 years....the last 15 of which have been exclusively fretless. Not only do I play on a semi-professional basis, but I am also a music educator specializing in theory, relative pitch ear training, and improvisational skills. I am a self confessed music nerd, and I am a tone junky. I do not have a big pedalboard [although at one time I had 14 pedals at my feet]. I currently run an NS2 Noise Gate, the MXR Blowtorch, an MXR Bass Envelope Filter, an MXR Bass Octave Deluxe, and a Boss CE3 Compressor. I also run reverb, subtle delays and chorus as necessary through a TC Electronic G Major rack unit.

    In my estimation, this is an amazingly versatile unit. It gives me warmth when I want it, and has more gas in the tank if it becomes necessary. It isn't as crunchy as a Big M#ff or an El Grande Bass Fuzz [which I also own, respectfully], but if you want a diverse pedal that can cover lots of ground, or you just like having a few varieties of bass fuzz pedals on your pedal board, this is really the value leader.

    Comment on this review

    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Useful Addition to Fuzz Arsenal

    By Sparella

    from Tennessee

    Comments about MXR M-181 Bass Blowtorch Overdrive Distortion Pedal:

    The MXR Blowtorch is a BASS FUZZ PEDAL. Whoever decided to include "overdrive" or even "distortion" in the description should be fired. It has been a fixture on my pedal board ever since I purchased it several years ago. My findings: Even at minimum gain, the fuzz is present and goes on up to massive from there. The frequency switch affects the tone so subtly, its not really worth having, but it doesn't hurt either. The 3-band EQ is quite capable of sculpting one's sound to taste. I've never found the "torch" mode useful nor is it accessible. I'd think twice before kicking that plastic switch mid-gig. I particularly like the blend knob. I use this pedal after another fuzz pedal and then blend the two sounds together, creating a wall of fuzz so thick... well, you can imagine. Build quality is good other than the battery compartment and torch toggle. Unless you're sponsored by a battery manufacturer, this pedal basically requires an 18 VDC adapter. Many bass pedals run on higher voltages to allow for increased headroom, and this is just another one of them. No big deal.

    Comment on this review

    (1 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

     
    2.0

    WHY?

    By MagdaMax

    from Sawtooths

    Comments about MXR M-181 Bass Blowtorch Overdrive Distortion Pedal:

    Why did I waste hard earned money on this thing? I am an obsessive tone tweaker and have never been more disappointed(with acception of BassBalls..blech)in a pedal in my 15+ years of playing. At best it gives you watery hollow sound when engaged. Buy the MXR Bass DI (rocks!) for distortion and coloration and skip the blow torch...it blows all right.

    Comment on this review

    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    very versatile fuzz from MXR...

    By Edgars

    from Texas

    Comments about MXR M-181 Bass Blowtorch Overdrive Distortion Pedal:

    The distortion produced by the MXR Bass Blowtorch has a very distinctive character. With high gain and blend settings, the sound is a very compressed synthy fuzz. Sounds almost like a chainsaw. Backing off the blend and gain, it is easy to find a gritty or tubey overdrive.The availability of controls like the 3 band EQ, mid freq switch, blend knob, and Torch intensity switch allow the user to craft an immense variety of tones and textures.I am impressed with everything about the construction except plastic Torch switch which seems kind of delicate. Still, I have had the pedal for six months, and it has performed perfectly during practice and gigs.I would highly recommend getting the Dunlop 18v power adapter with this pedal. It helps ensure the proper electrical performance of the unit. Don't mess with the double battery thing.

    Comment on this review

     
    3.0

    Just don't last that long....

    By Bass Masher

    from Grand Rapids, MI

    Comments about MXR M-181 Bass Blowtorch Overdrive Distortion Pedal:

    ok, I've owned this pedal for about a year and a half. I really like the sound that it puts out. But in that year and a half, it just broke on me for the second time. As much as i love the tone, I'm a professional musician. I can't have it breaking down on my all the time.

    Comment on this review

     
    1.0

    not good for long use

    By anonymous-EGNSZ

    from maryland

    Comments about MXR M-181 Bass Blowtorch Overdrive Distortion Pedal:

    right after i bought this pedal, the blowtorch knob fell off. during band practice the pedal worked fine, but after an extended time the pedal would be hot and cut in and out. finally, the pedal broke, after about 4 months. the light is always on, and the pedal will not kick in, i don recommend this to any traveling musician

    Comment on this review

     
    2.0

    MXR Blowtorch

    By Ollie Zamm

    from New Zealand

    Comments about MXR M-181 Bass Blowtorch Overdrive Distortion Pedal:

    I feel obligated to disagree with the other reviewers on this product.I cannot easily put into words how much it bites, horrible tone and a weird limiting compression thing happens if you crank the gain and blend to high, it loses any attack that was previously there.

    Comment on this review

     
    5.0

    Hard Rockin' Smile Maker!

    By Pappy-DOVVU

    from Towson, MD

    Comments about MXR M-181 Bass Blowtorch Overdrive Distortion Pedal:

    I recently bought the MXR Blowtorch at my local retailer and immediately fell in love with it. The EQ, mid adjust, and "blowtorch" switch all work great. The best is the blend knob, where you can add as much or as little fuzz as you want. On low blend settings, it's almost as if you have 2 channels running at once because the lows are still very audible and strong while the mids and highs are fuzzed out. my favorite tone for the blowtorch is adding just enough drive and mild fuzz for that "Mississippi Queen" sound. The pedal is very heavy and requires 2 9v batteries that die quick. Also, when you bring up the heavy distortion and boost the treble for a lead, the solid notes come through, but the hammer-ons and pull-offs are somewhat muted and can make you sound sloppy. All in all a great pedal though.

    Comment on this review

     
    5.0

    Look No Further!!!!

    By bassdaddy-AaE5f

    from tennessee

    Comments about MXR M-181 Bass Blowtorch Overdrive Distortion Pedal:

    Got this thing on a Wed. took it out of the box on Fri. at a gig, plugged in and made a few eq adjustments the next thing I know the hair on the back of my neck was standing on it's end. This thing is awesome. Super fuzzy and I hit the torch on switch just to see what happens and this thing was screamin!!! Just go get one right now, it's built like a tank , sounds like a lightsaber, and is very easy to operate. Another great MXR pedal.

    Comment on this review

     
    5.0

    Hands down, best out there...

    By SVTKING

    from San Francisco, CA

    Comments about MXR M-181 Bass Blowtorch Overdrive Distortion Pedal:

    Big, fuzzed out bass sound, without losing low end or definition. Sure, lots of fuzz or distortion units for bass sound great in the store or in your bedroom, but this is the first one where you can actually hear the fuzz above the "bass" sound. Think Big Muff pi without the excess noise and more punch, clarity, and low end.

    Comment on this review

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