Providence Sonic Drive SDR-4R is an overdrive pedal aimed at rhythm players. The effect is a reissue of the Sonic Drive which had five different iterations over the years, with the fourth version being the most popular.
The company states that the Sonic Drive SDR-4R is well suited to rhythm guitar duties, which I find a bold statement, as many players associate overdrive with lead playing. But I like that they believe their reissue has a special tone associated with that part of guitar playing in particular, although they say it can do lead sounds as well. I’ve never played an original one, so I cannot comment on how close it is or if it is indeed best suited to rhythm guitar playing.
The pedal has three control knobs labelled Level, Drive and Tone as well as a Fat switch. It’s a nice, simple layout, which is something I always appreciate in a drive pedal. The Sonic Drive is true bypass and also has the company’s SCT technology for maintaining your guitar signal when the effect is being bypassed. Providence say:
in bypass mode the audio passes through a single contact, thanks to a single contact true-bypass circuit.
This sounds suspiciously like marketing-talk, but you never know. Maybe it does actually help?
The blue LED on the front of the pedal also acts as a battery indicator, flashing and turning off when your battery is on its way out while the battery will carry on powering the pedal. At least this gives you a warning that you need to change it before the pedal dies on you.
The pedal will be a limited run, as Providence can apparently only source a limited amount of the original components.
RRP USD $199.00 plus shipping and taxes
Full specifications for the Providence Sonic Drive SDR-4R can be found here