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Maxon TBO-9 True Tube Booster/Overdrive Guitar Effects Pedal

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Product 580212
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The Maxon's TBO-9True Tube Booster/Overdrive is a guitar effects pedal that features a US Military spec subminiature tube at its core. Subminiature t...Click To Read More About This Product

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Subminiature tubes meet solid-state distortion for a warm, powerful sound.

The Maxon's TBO-9True Tube Booster/Overdrive is a guitar effects pedal that features a US Military spec subminiature tube at its core. Subminiature tubes are the final frontier of vacuum tubes, as the supply of quality vintage tubes is rapidly dwindling. Used extensively during World War II, subminiatures were largely abandoned by 1955 in favor of transistor technology, leaving a healthy stock of quality NOS tubes behind.

To create its lush overdrive tone, the TBO-9 guitar pedal blends this subminiature tube stage with a solid-state distortion circuit. Unlike other tube overdrives, the TBO-9 overdrive pedal employs a unique "pre-tube" circuit configuration, where the tube comes before the solid-state distortion circuit in the signal chain. By cascading the tube stage into the distortion stage, a more realistic tube-amp tone is achieved. The result is a warm yet powerful guitar tone that is extremely interactive with the player's performance and responds exactly like a hard-working tube amp.

The Maxon TBO-9 pedal's circuit features a clean Blend function built into the Drive control. At zero Drive, the TBO-9 passes clean signal only along to the Tone and Amplifier stages of the pedal. However, this clean signal is fed from the tube section of the pedal, whose gain can be adjusted via the Boost control. As the Drive control is increased, the solid-state distortion circuit is blended with the tube-driven clean signal. In this manner a wide variety of clean boost, semi-clean, overdriven and fully distorted tones can be achieved simply by manipulating the pedal's Drive and Boost controls.

Both the tube and solid-state sections of the circuit are fed with 30 volts DC thanks to the TBO-9 pedal's internal voltage regulators. Running the circuit at higher voltage provides a more consistent tone with increased headroom and dynamic response.

The performance of the tube is kept stable and reliable thanks to Maxon's unique heater inrush current control, which feeds the tube with a lower startup voltage to extend tube life. The complex multi-voltage operation of the Maxon TBO-9 prompted Maxon to develop a unique power supply for this delay pedal: the AC2009. The AC2009 provides very consistent high current that is regulated and filtered to provide stable, noise-free power to the TBO-9's circuit. The AC2009 is auto-sensing, so it can be used anywhere in the world by simply changing out the detachable plug cord on the output side of the power supply.

Like all Maxon Nine Series models, the TBO-9 features mechanical true bypass switching for direct, unaltered signal in bypass model.

If you crave the warmth and natural dynamic response of tubes, the Maxon TBO-9 delivers a variety of true tube tones at the touch of your foot.

  • Input Impedance: 500 kOhms
  • Output Impedance: 10 kOhms or less
  • Maximum Gain: 52 dB (1.6 kHz)
  • Equivalent Noise: -110 dB or less (IHF-A)
  • Controls: Boost, Drive, Tone, Level
  • Switch: Bypass/Effect (mechanical TBS)
  • In/Out: Input, Output, Inverse Output
  • Indicator: Bypass/Effect LED
  • Internal Circuit Voltage: 30 VDC (DC-DC Converter)
  • Current Consumption: 270 mA / 9 VDC
  • Dimensions: 2.9" W x 2.13" H x 4.9" D
  • Weight: 1.23 lb. (excluding AC adaptor)
  • Power Supply: Maxon AC2009 (no battery operation)

Add the TBO-9's warm tone to your arsenal—call or click today.

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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
MaxonTBO-9 True Tube Booster/Overdrive Guitar Effects Pedal

(based on 2 reviews)

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Reviewed by 2 customers

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(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)


TBO-9.....VERY Nice!

By TBlewz

from Earth

See all my reviews

Comments about Maxon TBO-9 True Tube Booster/Overdrive Guitar Effects Pedal:

There is nothing about this pedal that I don't like. It sounds great....matter of fact there are a multitude of great sounds in this pedal. You can just plug it in and rock or you can tweak to your hearts content. I haven't found a bad sound yet. You REALLY need to get one of these'll rock your world!
The Maxon TBO-9 True Tube Booster/overdrive pedal has the following controls - Drive, Boost level and Tone. All controls very interactive and predictable. You can use the boost, or the overdrive, or both. Adjust to taste and wail away. True bypass switch is(as usual for Maxon) very solid. Extremely well made. If I'm not mistaken the sub-miniature tube used in this pedal was originally used in the onboard guidance system for ICBM's (Intercontinental Ballistic Missle) so the tube is VERY tough. It was designed to withstand the forces generated during launch. I don't think one will have to be concerned with the toughness of this pedal. No complaints at all with this pedal.
Built like a truck! Sounds fantastic! Looks KILLER!
Fair price for what you get.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


One of the best overdrives

By Strat Lover-3mUEM

from Mount Vernon

See all my reviews

Comments about Maxon TBO-9 True Tube Booster/Overdrive Guitar Effects Pedal:

This thing KILLS. Any overdrive use you could think of, whether as a stand alone drive unit, a booster, whatever, this is it. With the drive all the way down, the level and boost up a fair amount, and the tone set to your ears liking, you get the most transparent, beautiful boost available. While some people say Tube Screamers are like "turning it up to 11," this thing truly is. By utilizing the tube, you get the most natural volume increase found in a stomp box. And as a drive unit, this thing is almost incomparable. Literally the best of both worlds. Another awesome thing about this pedal is its size. Most tube OD's (Big Ben, Chandler Tube Driver, etc) are absolutely HUGE. This thing delivers very comparable tone, and is the sive of a TS-9. Pretty cool.Now, this thing is EXPENSIVE. Hugely expensive. I personally believe that if you're looking for a booster, don't even consider buying anything else. Save up for this. However, for an overdrive, there are very comparable units that are much cheaper. For OD, I would go with the Big Ben from Vox (if it's unorthodox size isn't a problem). And for boosters, of course, go with the Katana from Keeley for a cheaper and very similar pedal.

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