1981 Inventions announces second overdrive pedal, the LVL

The LVL is described as a non-transparent overdrive.

The LVL pedal amongst Autumn leaves

Image: 1981 Inventions

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1981 Inventions, the effects company founded by musician Matt Hoopes, has released its second ever pedal, the LVL.

Hoopes teased back in March that he was working on “Something big. Something loud,” and now we know exactly what it is. Described as a “non-transparent overdrive”, the LVL shouldn’t fade into the background of your tone. Hoopes says it is the pedal he has “always wanted to make”, and states that it will add harmonics and dynamics into the mix.

It’s a low-gain device, which achieves overdrive gain ranges with a unique, newly crafted circuit. A combination of light clipping and op-amp push gives the pedal a one of a kind sound and gain structure, and it should work great with bass guitars too.

1981 Inventions’ first release, the DRV, earned a rare and impressive 10/10 from us at Guitar.com when we reviewed it in 2019. We described the pedal as one of “the best overdrive units we’ve ever heard” – so the stakes are pretty high.

Brought to life as a collaborative effort with Hoopes’ friend John Snyder of Electrical Audio Experiments, LVL was culminated over the last four years following the release of the DRV, which took the pedal market by storm.

In a statement released to mailing list subscribers, Hoopes said: “Many of you have been with me since the beginning, even before DRV was launched. I really wanted to do something special just for you. You’ve patiently waited through barrages of new colourways, and I hope that this will be a sort of payoff.”

A limited run of units will be available, with an official launch on 6 June. This launch will also be limited to one unit per customer to ensure a fair chance of everybody getting one.

The price for LVL stands at $229. You can find out more about 1981 Inventions at 1981Inventions.com.

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