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TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal

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The TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal aims to give you that powerful, super-musical roar of an early Plexi - a sound that wil...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

Instant distortion gratification with an all-analog circuit, dual-band tone control, and a shredding sound.

The TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal aims to give you that powerful, super-musical roar of an early Plexi - a sound that will satisfy even the pickiest players out there.

From cleans with an attitude and warm bluesy tones to a crunch with grit for days and fully saturated lead sounds full of harmonics and overtones, it's all here and instantly available by riding your guitar's volume knob. Dark Matter distortion is built from the highest-grade components, features an easy-access battery hatch and has a conveniently small footprint.

Dark Matter Distortion defines instant gratification and will become the go-to pedal on your board for distortion. Initially, you simply plug it in and start rocking, but its many great sounds will have you playing with it for years to come. From bluesy crunch to full-on vintage cranked, but always very musical distortion sounds, this pedal was designed for the guitarists that like things a bit (or very) dirty. Featuring an all-analog circuit, dual-band tone controls, level and drive knobs and a voicing switch to tweak the bass response, you are set from creamy leads over riff-heavy stadium rock to modern, angst-ridden grunge.

By ramping up the voltage to more than 3-4 times the amount of your typical drive pedals, a dramatic increase is achieved in terms of headroom and dynamics. There is plenty of gain to suit any kind of musical style, but the sound always stays very open and clear and it will never get muddy or cover up your playing.

Instead, Dark Matter Distortion has a very open character, no matter if you use it as a slight 'AC/DC-ish' crunch or as a full-blown, fire-breathing dragon, this pedal will always let your playing shine through. All Dark Matter Distortion will do to your sound is add degrees of distortion and leave your precious tone alone.

FEATURES
True Bypass - zero loss of tone
Gain, Level, Bass and Treble controls - total control of your distortion sounds
Voicing switch - for an awesome shift in bass response
Easy battery access - makes changing batteries fun! (well, almost)
Small footprint - save precious pedal board space
High-quality components - only the best will do when it comes to tone
Road-ready design - ready to follow you wherever your playing takes you
DC adapter sold separately

Be proud to be loud. Order today.

Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
TC ElectronicDark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal
 
4.5

(based on 34 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (25)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

86%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Excellent sound quality (24)
  • Responsive (21)
  • Compact (20)
  • Versatile (19)
  • Good selection of effects (10)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Performances (22)
  • Home studio (17)
  • Amateur recording (13)
  • Professional recording (13)
  • Outdoor events / games (11)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (21), Professional musician (6), Novice (4)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

My pedal board is now complete!

I'm a songwriter and only do studio work, and in the early 2000's there was a lot of new modeling amps, multi-effects units, and plug-ins coming on to the scene. I somehow...Read complete review

I'm a songwriter and only do studio work, and in the early 2000's there was a lot of new modeling amps, multi-effects units, and plug-ins coming on to the scene. I somehow rationalized I didn't need my JCM2000 DSL-50/1960A half-stack anymore - I've been searching for that tone since.

I've researched, auditioned, and purchased numerous pedals in my quest to get that sound back, so when I heard a couple of TC's sample sounds (specifically Crunch - "Goin' Crazy") - my quest was over. To be honest, I would have been happy with just that one tone, but this is more than a one trick pony.

First, it responds very well to the volume control and picking dynamics - that is extremely important to me. My main pedal board is full of TC pedals, so I was pleased to discover yet another excellent TC product. It has the same active tone controls and layout as my Spark Booster (also highly recommended), and it plays well with other overdrive pedals - like my TC Nova Drive. In the up position the voice switch provides a bit of extra cut, while the down position yields a warmer sound for rhythm playing, or to take a bit of the edge off of a single-coil.

By itself, it won't really get you to modern metal tones, but used in conjunction with the right overdrive - it wails! I've used the pedal with passive and active pickups, humbuckers and single-coils - I have yet to find a combination that doesn't yield good results if you work at it. I can't say that it will make a solid state amp sound like a Marshall stack, but in front of a tube amp - it will provide a rich tonal palette to play with.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Very good

This is a very nice sounding plexi sound pedal. I do think that TC would sell more if it was named appropriately as the name sounds more like a metal pedal which it clearly...Read complete review

This is a very nice sounding plexi sound pedal. I do think that TC would sell more if it was named appropriately as the name sounds more like a metal pedal which it clearly is not. I traded mine away because while I liked the sound it became lost in the mix in a band situation.
The other issue is that TC uses a unique switch which is not easily replaceable. Check with them...they will tell you this.

Reviewed by 34 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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(7 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Awesome little pedal

By Colin Tume

from Australia

See all my reviews

Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

Its a greta little pedal. No instructions no board tape like the Polytunes came with was a bit of a let down. but meh its a pedal lets you play really loud and make your neighbours hate you. I love it.
Ive always used the amp heads gain as my sound. But I really wanted something with a little more control. plus I had trouble with TA-15 MESA not having a loop effects link and getting muddy sounds from other pedals. So I thought I'd giving it a try. Its robust in its design as all TC products are.
The sound is clean audible and almost makes the same sound as the amp youre playing on. Particually with Valve amps.
good solid product
In australia its at the high end of the market it really doesnt do anything any other pedal cant do. its bass and treble controls are a nice feature to get a unique sound.

(6 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Does What It Should

By Kevn0

from Moberly Mo

About Me Experienced

See all my reviews

Ask me a question

Pros

  • Compact Design
  • Excellent Sound Quality
  • Responsive
  • Versatile

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Amateur Recording
    • Home Studio
    • Performances
    • Professional Recording

    Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

    It took some dialing in to really comprehend the charm of this pedal, but once I did, I really liked it. Really nails that high gain Marshall sound, as it intends to. Very similar to the Zvex Distortron, although personally, and just by a nose, I prefer the Dark Matter, simply because I like the design better. Sonically, you would be hard pressed to tell them apart. Cleans up into a nice overdrive very well, and when you push the amp on the leads you really get those wonderful harmonics and that sustain...that magic sustain...you know it from God-knows-how-many records, and when you hear it emanating from your axe? Ahhh.....

    (5 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

     
    3.0

    Very good

    By backinit

    from ME

    About Me Experienced

    Pros

    • Compact Design
    • Excellent Sound Quality
    • Responsive

    Cons

    • Difficult To Repair

    Best Uses

      Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

      This is a very nice sounding plexi sound pedal. I do think that TC would sell more if it was named appropriately as the name sounds more like a metal pedal which it clearly is not. I traded mine away because while I liked the sound it became lost in the mix in a band situation.
      The other issue is that TC uses a unique switch which is not easily replaceable. Check with them...they will tell you this.

      (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      My pedal board is now complete!

      By troubadour

      from Kansas City

      About Me Experienced

      See all my reviews

      Ask me a question

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Compact Design
      • Excellent Sound Quality
      • Responsive
      • Versatile

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Home Studio
        • Performances
        • Professional Recording

        Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

        I'm a songwriter and only do studio work, and in the early 2000's there was a lot of new modeling amps, multi-effects units, and plug-ins coming on to the scene. I somehow rationalized I didn't need my JCM2000 DSL-50/1960A half-stack anymore - I've been searching for that tone since.

        I've researched, auditioned, and purchased numerous pedals in my quest to get that sound back, so when I heard a couple of TC's sample sounds (specifically Crunch - "Goin' Crazy") - my quest was over. To be honest, I would have been happy with just that one tone, but this is more than a one trick pony.

        First, it responds very well to the volume control and picking dynamics - that is extremely important to me. My main pedal board is full of TC pedals, so I was pleased to discover yet another excellent TC product. It has the same active tone controls and layout as my Spark Booster (also highly recommended), and it plays well with other overdrive pedals - like my TC Nova Drive. In the up position the voice switch provides a bit of extra cut, while the down position yields a warmer sound for rhythm playing, or to take a bit of the edge off of a single-coil.

        By itself, it won't really get you to modern metal tones, but used in conjunction with the right overdrive - it wails! I've used the pedal with passive and active pickups, humbuckers and single-coils - I have yet to find a combination that doesn't yield good results if you work at it. I can't say that it will make a solid state amp sound like a Marshall stack, but in front of a tube amp - it will provide a rich tonal palette to play with.

        (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Excellent Rock N' Roll Tone

        By Aaron

        from Tulsa, OK

        About Me Professional Musician

        Pros

        • Compact Design
        • Excellent Sound Quality
        • Responsive
        • Versatile

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Performances
          • Professional Recording

          Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

          I finally retired my Marshall in favor of something smaller and easier to move from gig to gig. I snagged a Peavey Classic 30, but didn't want to lose that Marshall sound. Enter the Dark Matter. I run the pedal a bit more like an OD than a distortion, as I dime the volume and keep the gain held back. In doing this I can get a great variety of tones by manipulating my guitars volume control. It's my "Always On" pedal and I never play a show without it.

          (3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          exellent

          By metalman531

          from Spokane,W.A

          About Me Experienced

          See all my reviews

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Compact Design
          • Excellent Sound Quality
          • Hear all the colors of your chords
          • Responsive
          • Versatile

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Amateur Recording
            • Events
            • Home Studio
            • Performances
            • Professional Recording

            Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

            This is a pedal for guitarists with real skills.This is not a hide behind a bunch of effects kind of sound.You get crystal clear tones.It sits extremely well in the mix and is very well built.I expect it will last for years.The price is great too.

            (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            What a deal!

            By Rockerduck

            from Marietta, Ga

            About Me Experienced

            See all my reviews

            Ask me a question

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Compact Design
            • Excellent Sound Quality
            • Good Selection Of Effects
            • Responsive
            • Versatile

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Amateur Recording
              • Events
              • Home Studio
              • Performances
              • Professional Recording

              Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

              You can't beat the price of this distortion stomp for great sounds. I stopped buying Booteek boxes and use my ears now to find great sounds.

              (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Best Distortion in it's price range

              By JSullivan89

              from Grand Rapids, MI

              About Me Experienced

              Pros

              • Compact Design
              • Excellent Sound Quality
              • Responsive
              • Versatile

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Amateur Recording
                • Home Studio
                • Performances
                • Professional Recording

                Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                I was looking for something to give me some middle ground between the clean channel and a heavier distortion channel on my Marshall head. Something with just a little grit and crunch. This pedal worked perfectly. I was using a Boss DS-1 and I can't believe they are priced the same. After playing through the Dark Matter pedal I wouldn't pay ten for the Boss. If you're looking for a cheap awesome sounding distortion pedal this one is perfect.

                (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                really useable range from drive to distort

                By KC

                from Cowtown, Tx

                About Me Experienced

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Excellent Sound Quality
                • Responsive
                • Versatile

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Performances

                  Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                  Very musical range from OD to near metal. Good eq section. Using it to drive a Fender Pro Junior amp. Fits the bill for multiple styles, don't feel the need to change distortion boxes, just adjust drive and eq. Good price for a solid stompbox.

                  (3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  3.0

                  Nothing special

                  By LK

                  from NJ

                  About Me Experienced

                  See all my reviews

                  Ask me a question

                  Verified Reviewer

                  Pros

                  • Well Built

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                      Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                      This pedal is ok. Nothing really to complain about. The sound is ok. There are certainly much more accurate Marshall-type pedals out there. I don't get the name "Dark Matter." This is not a heavy distortion. Also, be sure to try it with a setup similar to your own. It does not play nice with my Joe Barden Tele pickups. Does better with my other guitars.

                      Like all TC stuff I've owned, it is very well constructed.

                      Try it for yourself. It could be the sound you're looking for. It mostly isn't the sound I'm looking for. However, when on sale, it's cheap enough and well-built enough that I'm keeping it as backup for my other pedals.

                      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      5.0

                      I love it.

                      By CoachC

                      from Mount Pleasant, South Carolina

                      About Me Experienced

                      Pros

                      • Compact Design
                      • Excellent Sound Quality
                      • Versatile

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Events
                        • Performances

                        Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                        This is a great pedal especially for the price. I play through a modeling amp with built in effects and I'm not real crazy about the distortion choices. This solved my problem. It can do everything from crunchy blues to all out high gain distortion. I would characterize it as very Marshall sounding. I've gigged with it and it's done a great job. It is my first and only distortion pedal and for it's modest price you can't go wrong.

                        (2 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        4.0

                        First Pedal

                        By Ben

                        from Rome

                        About Me Novice

                        See all my reviews

                        Pros

                        • Excellent Sound Quality

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                            Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                            Inexpensive pedal, but it sounds great.

                            (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                             
                            5.0

                            This was a go even before the insane price drop.

                            By union square

                            from new york

                            About Me Experienced

                            See all my reviews

                            Pros

                            • Compact Design
                            • Excellent Sound Quality
                            • Good Selection Of Effects
                            • Responsive
                            • Versatile

                            Cons

                              Best Uses

                              • Amateur Recording
                              • Events
                              • Home Studio
                              • Performances
                              • Professional Recording

                              Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                              I've heard it said that every guitarist should have one of these, I agree. Not as transparent as the Soul Food, but higher gain and more nuanced (separate bass & treble dials) at those higher gain settings. pairing it with the Soul Food or a clean overdrive opens new dimensions to your sound. although this is more of an overdrive than a distortion, it enhances distortion pedals well (although i admit some hum/noise at higher gain settings when done this way). you will not want to return this pedal once you see how unique your grit becomes and how well it enhances modulation pedals (yes, even on single coils).

                              (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                               
                              5.0

                              Classic metal distortion !

                              By Fu Mann Shu

                              from Charlotte, NC

                              About Me Experienced

                              See all my reviews

                              Ask me a question

                              Verified Buyer

                              Pros

                              • Compact Design
                              • Excellent Sound Quality
                              • Responsive
                              • Versatile

                              Cons

                                Best Uses

                                • Amateur Recording
                                • Events
                                • Home Studio
                                • Performances
                                • Professional Recording

                                Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                                The Dark Matter distortion is an excellent sounding distortion pedal by TC Electronic.

                                This is a more classic sounding distortion.

                                At lower gain levels, you can get some softer genres than metal such as hard rock. You can get into metal territory pretty quick with this pedal,though. However, you're not going to get into the most brutal types of metal with just this pedal. It is more suited for more classic types of metal such as 80's hair/glam metal. Put it in front of an already slightly overdriven amp and you get some pretty good fuzz and lead tones....doesn't get annoying and splatty like some fuzz pedals or even distortion pedals put in front of a dirty amp. Experiment with a tube screamer type pedal, and see if you can get that tight, focused distortion you want for more brutal genres of metal !

                                (2 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

                                 
                                2.0

                                Dark Matter Distortion

                                By Blong3

                                from Myrtle Beach, SC

                                About Me Experienced

                                Pros

                                • Compact Design
                                • Looks cool

                                Cons

                                • Digital
                                • Small
                                • Thin

                                Best Uses

                                  Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                                  I understand that for some, this might be the pedal you are looking for and I think it's worth giving a shot. If you are into newer music, I think this might give you some sounds you are looking for. I personally have a vintage set up. I play an Anderson through a Fender Twin. When the dark matter stood next to and Ibanez TS-808HW, the dark matter sounded so incredibly thin and digital so I couldn't use it. I personally like my distortion to be full, and fat, and rich, and warm, and clear. With the dark matter, I didn't feel as though there was much of any of that.

                                  (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                                   
                                  5.0

                                  Exactly what I was looking for

                                  By Chasta

                                  from Bozeman, MT

                                  About Me Experienced

                                  See all my reviews

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Pros

                                  • Excellent Sound Quality
                                  • Good Selection Of Effects
                                  • Versatile

                                  Cons

                                    Best Uses

                                    • Amateur Recording
                                    • Events
                                    • Home Studio

                                    Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                                    I've been using this pedal as a quick effects pedal for some home recording, and it is super easy to hit the exact level of grittiness I need for each part. From decently heavy to a clean-slight boost, this pedal tears through it no problem.

                                    The one "problem" which isn't really, is that the input and output ports on this pedal are at the same position along the side, while all my other pedals are staggered. Yeah, I'm whining about nothing.

                                    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                                     
                                    3.0

                                    Okay but not the best

                                    By Barneston Distortion

                                    from Middlesboro

                                    About Me Professional Musician

                                    Pros

                                    • Compact Design
                                    • Good Selection Of Effects

                                    Cons

                                      Best Uses

                                      • Performances

                                      Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                                      For the price they are about the best if you are on a budget. Its way better than DS-1 for example. Put it next to a wampler sovereign and you wil see that you get what you pay for.

                                      (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                                       
                                      5.0

                                      I would buy again this paddle.

                                      By bawi

                                      from undisclosed

                                      See all my reviews

                                      Ask me a question

                                      Verified Buyer

                                      Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                                      this is exactly what I want, the sound is great. very easy to used, I would recommend this paddle to friend, also the price is good too

                                      (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                                       
                                      5.0

                                      Good Pedal

                                      By nj

                                      from Omaha NE

                                      About Me Novice

                                      See all my reviews

                                      Pros

                                      • Excellent Sound Quality
                                      • Great Sound
                                      • Versatile

                                      Cons

                                        Best Uses

                                        • Amateur Recording
                                        • Events
                                        • Home Studio
                                        • Performances

                                        Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                                        I play metal and the tones i can get out of this pedal are exactly what I was looking for! I've had it for a couple months and it's still going strong and sounding amazing! Worth the money.

                                         
                                        5.0

                                        Distinct and Smooth?

                                        By Broadway Turk Superstar

                                        from KC MO

                                        About Me Experienced

                                        See all my reviews

                                        Verified Buyer

                                        Pros

                                        • Compact Design
                                        • Good Selection Of Effects

                                        Cons

                                          Best Uses

                                          • Home Studio
                                          • Performances

                                          Comments about TC Electronic Dark Matter Distortion Guitar Effects Pedal:

                                          I've got a select few pedals over the last twelve years. I am very selective about wasting my money in buying ones that won't complement the collection. I was glad to find that Dark Matter was a good fit. It doesn't have the messy feedback of Death Metal, and its sound is much smoother than Screaming Blues and Grunge. I was somewhat disappointed that it wasn't anything really new, but there's only so much a guitar can do. Comparing it to most, it's like a aged vintage whiskey compared to generic rotgut...distinct flavor and smooth as they come.

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