is there a pedal that can control the volume of a effect into the mix by bringing the effect(distortion)?

Ok, Im in a group that plays alot of shows and im allways looking for a way to improve my live sound.What im needin to know is if there is a pedal(like a wah or volume) that can sepratly control my distortion with out affectting my original sound.Now i know that most any pedal does have a affect unless its true bypass but i'm wanting to be able to bring my distortion into my sound like a volume pedal but it only needs to control the distortion and not the volume of my amp.I can get a similar effect by rolling back my volme on my guitar and clicking the pedal on while roling my volume back up and it makes the effect of the distorton being 'breathed' into my sound.Anyway i duno if there is a pedal like this or if i would have to build one. i'v heard this idea somewhere before and never heard how or if it has been done so thank you and i hop someone can help me out! thanks!

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barrylegg7 years ago
I have an Akai Shred-o-Matic for sale if anyone wants it.

Email me at if you're interested.
I have wanted one of these myself for a very long time now. I have considered trying to build one myself by re-wiring a volume pedal's pot to a distortion pedal's gain/distortion knob.
There is also a pedal by Akai called the D1 Shred-o-matic that may do this:
I have seen these come up on ebay every once in a while, but have never tried one personally. Not sure how the quality of it's distortion is. -I'm the kind of guy that wants to try something out before making the investment.
Also, if there is a particular distortion pedal that you prefer and feel that it's gain sweep is what you want when you turn it's gain knob low to high, there is a pedal called the Third Hand that can turn the pedal's knob via an expression pedal:

Hope some of this info helps you on your quest!
-with any luck, some R&D people from effects manufacturers will stumble across this thread!
AFF8 years ago
Maybe I read wrong but ... it sounds like you are wanting something like a build up of the distortion instead of the all or nothing of stepping on a stompbox. I know a few people that could help make that happen for you actually three different forums that work with that exactly!!! Anyways you will possibly have to mod the pedal ... take a volume pedal and a distortion pedal. Just for an example lets say a dunlop volume and a boss ds-1. You will need to locate where in the circuit you can add the volume pedal ... it will basically "swell" the distorted signal for you. I am going to go out on a limb here and say that if you open a DS-1 and you solder a wire before the clipping diodes (d4 and d5) and one after (although I may be wrong you might need to attach one wire near and the other in another part of the circuit) but you will actually be adjusting what is being sent through the clipping diodes. I did a custom mod on my ds-1 and it sucked a good bit of volume and tone so I went back in a changed a resistor value and now it is a beast ... so I know you could do this with most Boss pedal. Since many volume, wah, and expression pedals are just a pedal that allows you to adjust the resistance then you can probably disconnect the entire circuit in a wah pedal and use the sweep of the resistor that the moving part of the pedal is attached to then run those wires to the input/output ... this should not affect your sound. If it does you can get around that. And I must mention that Boss pedals have buffers that affect HELP your signal and they do not suck tone. Here is a test for you ... find the longest instrument cables you can. Try to get at least 2 - 50 foot cables and run them into a true bypass pedal and play ... then run it into a boss pedal. The truebypass will allow your signal to degrade when it is both on and off but the boss buffers will condition the signal so that your loss of running 100 foot of cable is minimal. But if you truly want to make your Boss pedal bypass I can show you away that is very cheap and easy plus you do not have to tap into the board and drill around to make it true bypass. Off topic I know but send me a message here and I can point you to multiple places that can help you get that fade in distortion of that is what you are after, Good Luck AFF
DrBrown8 years ago
Its a long shot, but Ihad the same problem in the 80's. Both Boss and Arion had a cheap pedal that would function that way. The Boss was in a metal shell and took more of beating than the Arion in the plastic shell. Maybe some goon out there still has one. I gave mine away when I ripped my left index flexor tendon.
DrBrown8 years ago
Question: Do you want to fade from bypass to full distortion with all of the ranges in between, while maintaining the exact same volume level in the transition?
checkpointcharlie (author)  DrBrown8 years ago
Yes! thats what i'm wanting so insted of the 'click' sound i will have the distortion 'breathed' into my sound.
Chicken22098 years ago
wait you saying you want a pedal that when off, plays clean full volume and when on distortion and full volume? Don't normal pedals have a bypass when off? If not, you could make a simple toggle kick switch that could both lead to an amp except one side would have your pedal, so toggling the switch would switch from an distortion to clean