Maxon’s Scott Henderson SD-9SH Sonic Distortion is being billed as “The best distortion in the world”. Now that’s a bold claim! This version of Maxon’s SD-9 comes with tweaks developed with Mr Henderson, as well as an additional output level.
“The best distortion in the world”
The SD-9 distortion pedal already has quite the cult following. The Scott Henderson SD-9SH Sonic Distortion adds some Mr Henderson’s preferred options as well. Scott has been quoted as saying that it’s “the best distortion pedal ever made”. Seeing as Scott Henderson is putting his own name on it, we can be sure it must, at least, be pretty decent.
New and Improved
This signature versions was created by the original Tube Screamer designer Susumu Tamura. This enhanced edition has the same three-knob layout of distortion, tone and level as the original model. But a few improvements have been made at Scott Henderson’s behest. These include reducing the treble response and shifting the centre frequency of the shelving filter in order to accentuate the lower mids. An additional output level has also been added to help balance the output signal with other effects pedals.
As to the sound, it’s hard to comment on at the moment. At the time of writing, we can’t find any audio demos of this new version online. We know that Maxon can make great pedals and that Susumu Tamura knows a thing or two about pedal designing. Throw in the Scott Henderson endorsement and in theory it should be pretty spectacular.
You can check out the recent Maxon Apex808 and the Robert Keeley co-designed OD808-40K to get an idea of the general level of quality we can expect. I reckon that this new SD-9SH is probably one to check out. I’m certainly looking forward to hearing one soon.
The standard classic ’80s Maxon SD-9* is a perennial favourite of many guitar players. This new version could be pretty interesting, if the price is right.
RRP – TBC