11 Best Multi Effects Pedals Of All Time

2 Comments

If you’re wondering “What’s the best multi effects pedal” you’ve come to the right place as we show you 11 of the best multi effects pedals you must try before you die.

best multi effects pedals of all time

There’s so many multi effects pedals out there to choose from, that finding the right one that suits your musical style and your budget can be a little difficult. depending on what your style or genre is, you’re could be wondering which multi effects pedal is best for metal, or curious if your multi-effects pedal will work with your tube amp or even which option is right for your acoustic guitar, but fear not as we aim to answer all those questions and more.

As there are only a selection of companies that make multi-effects pedals, deciding on one can be a little bit of a minefield, so we’re going to break them down in cost ascending order, highlight key features and, where applicable, show you which ones are best for certain styles of music.

These are the best multi effects pedals on the market today which are ideal for beginners all the way through to professionals.

The 11 Best Multi Effects Pedals Of All Time

1. Zoom G1ON Guitar Effects Pedal - £49

Zoom G1ON Guitar Effects Pedal

First up we have the Zoom G1ON Guitar Effects Pedal. At under £50, this is an extremely affordable option and the simple, multi-stomp box design makes it one of the best multi-effects pedals for those with limited space on their board and beginners who don’t want to invest too much straight away.

So why is it one of the best multi effects pedals?

Well, I’m glad you asked. Don’t be fooled by the price and the size of this thing, as it’s a veritable Pandora’s box of effects waiting to be unleashed upon the world. You have over 75 onboard effects to choose from including distortion, compression, modulation, delay and reverb modelled on some of the biggest hitters in the industry, like the Boss DS-1, Metal Zone, Fuzz Face, Big Muff, Pro Co rat and many, many more. The team at Zoom have also thrown in a simulator to allow your guitar to sound like an acoustic.

You have 16 different modulation effects including chorus and flange, 12 overdrive/distortion effects including high gain monsters and smooth creamy overdrives, 14 mono and stereo delays and reverbs and 22 amp models including tube and solid state amps from Fender, Marshall, Orange, Diezel, and mesa Boogie. It’s safe to say, you’ll find it hard to get bored of this thing!

There’s also a tuner, Rhythm function with 68 different rhythms to jam along with and a looper for getting your ideas down. In addition, you can also chain up to 5 effects together too, so you can create complete sets with all the effects you need.

2. Zoom G3n Multi-Effects Processor - £129

Zoom G3n Multi-Effects Processor

If you’re a guitarist, chances are you’ve either owned or at least played on a Zoom multi-effects pedal. It’s basically an unwritten law! They have always and continue to make some of the best multi effects pedals known to the musical world, so naturally we had to include the Zoom G3n Multi-Effects Processor (as well as a handful of other Zoom models) in this list.

So why is it one of the best multi effects pedals?

Straight out of the box you have over 68 on-board digital effects, 75 custom designed factory patches for iconic sounds, 5 amp emulations and 5 cabinet emulators, so you’re not going to run out of choices on stage or in the studio. In addition, you have access to the Guitar Lab software app that allows you to download new stomp boxes and patches regularly.

You have tonnes of distortion models based on the likes of the classic DS-1 (Dist-1) and Pro Co Rat (Squeak) pedals and more as well as boost, delay and modulation effects. An onboard tuner, stereo/mono looper with up to 80- seconds of phrase recording, tap tempo, stereo headphone output for silent practice and the ability to use up to 7 effects simultaneously.

In depth patch editing is possible, but don’t let that scare you as the unit is extremely easy to operate and you can save your own settings directly via the on-board memory or use the Auto Save feature.

3. Valeton Dapper Dark Effect Strip for Electric Guitar - £149

Valeton Dapper Dark Effect Strip for Electric Guitar

If you’re a heavy metal guitarist, your prayers have been answered. The Valeton Dapper Dark Effect Strip for Electric Guitar has been designed specifically for the metal fans out there and those who enjoy their higher gain sounds and melting peoples faces with their riffs!

So why is it one of the best multi effects pedals?

This is easily the best multi effects pedal for metal, especially if you need an easy to use option with just the essentials packed in. Within the Valeton Dapper Dark Effect Strip, you have a built-in tuner, Higain effect designed for brutal distortion sounds, a lush Chorus to bring out those riffs and add more weight to your sound as well as a Delay effect with tap tempo to allow you to add everything from slap-back delay to long, drawn out echoes. Best of all you have a Boost pedal which throws in +12 dB of gain so you can stand out from the mix when you kick in to a solo or need a certain riff to really jump out.

The modest price tag makes it a great option for beginners or those who already have a range of effects on their board that they want to add to.

4. Boss ME-80 Multi Effects Processor Pedal for Guitar - £229

Boss ME-80 Multi Effects Processor Pedal for Guitar

Boss make some of the best guitar and bass pedals ever. In fact, 9 times out of 10 you’ll be able to find a Boss pedal on a guitarists pedal board, whether they’re a complete beginner or seasoned pro.

Among other things, they’re extremely reliable, sound great and built like tanks, so you can stomp on them for years and they’ll never let you down. However, collecting them all will cost an absolute fortune. Fortunately, the team at Boss have put together a couple of options for those who want a world of Boss effects pedals at their feet. One option is the Boss ME-80 Multi Effects Processor Pedal.

So why is it one of the best multi effects pedals?

We think this is one of the best multi-effects pedals as it’s packed to the brim with a range of classic and modern Boss effects. In fact, there’s eight simultaneous effects categories that can work in unison, and each of those categories has multiple effects types within. This means you have access to a vast array of Boss effects as well as COSM amps derived from the Boss GT-100.

There’s 8 multi-function footswitches which you can use for single effects, or assign them to the built in patches. Or you can even create your own patches and assign them to any pedal for easier recall on stage. A 38 second looper allows you to jam on your own too!

The BOSS TONE STUDIO software which is included with the multi-effects unit allows you to edit and assign your tones and patches on your computer whilst allowing you to preview and download free patches directly from the BOSS TONE CENTRAL website from some of the worlds most famous musicians.

The fact it can run on 6 x AA batteries or a PSA-series AC adapter makes it ideal for busking musicians and those with limited space. A great option for tone snobs on a budget.

5. Boss AD-10 Acoustic Guitar Effects Processor - £258

Boss AD-10 Acoustic Guitar Effects Processor

Acoustic guitarists can sometimes get left out in the cold when it comes to multi-effects pedals. Fortunately, the team at Boss have been listening to your requests for an innovative multi-effects pedal for acoustic guitar, and ended up creating a complete live performance option for players of all levels. In fact, they’ve crafted the best multi effects pedal for acoustic guitar that you could find in the Boss AD-10 Acoustic Guitar Effects Processor.

So why is it one of the best multi effects pedals?

As we’ve mentioned, this is arguably the best multi-effects pedal for acoustic guitar as it has been designed from the ground up to suit and complement all aspects of acoustic guitar playing.

You have a huge range of effects at your disposal, which can be applied to both vocals (thanks to the XLR inputs) and line level instruments such as your acoustic guitar. You have 2 compressors, a boost, 3 Chorus types, as well as 3 types of delay and reverb effects to suit a wide range of sonic palettes, all of which have been optimised specifically for acoustic guitar. However, it’s the Acoustic Resonance selectors, 80 second phrase looper and anti-feedback feature that the acoustic guitarists will really take advantage of.

The Acoustic Resonance control gives you the option of adding life back in to your sound. Where some pickups, Piezos in particular can sometimes sound “quacky” and hard, due to the fact they only pick up the sound of the bridge area, the AD-10 analyses your pickup signal and recreates the missing body and string resonances accurately to ensure the subtle tonalities of your playing qualities of your guitar are intact.

The Feedback Protection seeks out any unwanted frequencies that might creep in and gently suppresses them to ensure your guitar isn’t squealing when it shouldn’t be, all without colouring your tone!

6. Line 6 Pod HD500X Amp Modelling and Multi-Effects Pedal

Line 6 Pod HD500X Amp Modelling and Multi-Effects Pedal

The Line 6 Pod HD500X Amp Modelling and Multi-Effects Pedal is easily one of the best multi effects pedals for professionals thanks to the sheer amount of amp modeling and guitar effects within. It’s easy to use and easy to set up, and the fact you have access to all the necessary parameters without it being too complicated makes it a great option for multi-effects newcomers who don’t ever want to upgrade again!

So why is it one of the best multi effects pedals?

We think this multi effects pedal is a perfect fit for guitarists who demand more from their sound due to the simple layout and the fact you have 100+ studio and stomp effects your disposal – 8 of which you can use at the same time! You have individual overdrive, distortion and delay effects as well as a myriad of award-winning HD amps, speaker cabinets and mics that you have total control over.

Stereo FX loop connectivity and functionality allows you to hook up any other effects pedals you might have, which ensures the tonal qualities of those pedals are intact. You can also dictate whereabouts on the signal chain your built-in effects are – ideal for tone snobs.

If you’re recording or practicing at home, or you think your own amplifier sounds like garbage you’ll enjoy the selection of cabinets and amps built in. USB connectivity allows you to record directly to your DAW and enjoy a far greater sound rather than your direct amp signal, which is extremely useful when you want high quality recordings at home direct to your recording software, or you just can’t seem to make your amplifier sound good!

For a limited time you can now get the POD HD Model Pack worth $99 for free with each purchase! Head over to the Line 6 Website to register and download your pack.

7. Boss MS-3 Multi Effects Switcher - £387

Boss MS-3 Multi Effects Switcher

Yes, we know there’s a lot of Boss pedals on this list, but they’re just so darn good! This is a little bit of a curveball here, as the Boss MS-3 Multi Effects Switcher is more than just a multi-effects unit, but a complete controller port for your exiting effects AS WELL as a multi effects unit.

So why is it one of the best multi effects pedals?

If you already have your own pedals and you’re happy with that sound, but you’re A) tired of doing that stupid pedal dance where you have to knock three on at once and B) you also want to add a massive selection of new effects to your sound without taking up too much room on your board, then this is perfect!

You can run up to six of the 112 built-in internal effects within the Boss MS-3 Multi Effects Switcher at the same time and integrate three of your existing stompboxes into that sound too. So, to say there’s a world of options at your feet is an understatement. You can use it with your hybrid MIDI gear and utilise it to channel switch between amps too.

There’s 200 unique patch locations for you to assign your own sounds with and make use of the effects for guitar and bass, including world class BOSS delays, reverbs, mod/pitch effects, overdrives, distortions such as the DS-1 and Metal Zone and more. A built-in tuner is extremely handy as is the onboard USB interface which allows you to load presets onto the unit. This multi-effects unit allows you to access the free MS-3 Editor/Librarian software on a Mac or PC where you can make changes to your effects, assign parameters and sculpt your sound in complete detail for later recall when you’re playing live. You can mix whatever pedals and sounds you want and have that preset ready to go in seconds.

Probably the best multi effects pedal for those who already have a sound in mind, but want the option to expand without buying a load more pedals!

8. Line 6 Helix HX Effects - £481

Line 6 Helix HX Effects

From now on, we’re into the world of industry standard multi-effects units and we’re bringing out the heavy hitters! You might be wondering why we’re starting with the Line 6 Helix HX Effects rather than the regular Helix, but don’t worry we’ll get to that!

The Line 6 Helix HX Effects multi-effects unit is a no nonsense, stripped back version of the larger model, and the third option in the Helix series which provides a more affordable option for guitarists.

So why is it one of the best multi effects pedals?

You have over 100 effects taken straight from the award-winning Helix hardware and software processors to use, all packed within a more compact format than its bigger brother. You can even run up to 9 effects simultaneously.

You have so many effects on this that you’ll find it difficult to get bored, all of which have been modelled on some of the most iconic sounds in effects pedal history including Boss, Line 6, Electro Harmonix, Z Vex and more. You have a huge amount of distortions, delays, reverbs, modulations, pitch/synth/filters, compressors/limiters, EQs, wahs, and even a looper to sculpt your sound with, all of which have been meticulously modelled to include the subtlest qualities and sound abnormalities that made these effects and their respective pedals so revered.

MIDI integration and I/O and Routing options as well as a huge amount of connectivity options even allow you to hook this up to your studio workflow, keyboards, synths and more.

Want to go smaller? Check out the Line 6 Helix HX Stomp Multi-Effects Pedal.

9. Boss GT-1000 Guitar Effects Processor - £849

boss gt-1000

Since the Boss GT-1000 Guitar Effects Processor was announced at NAMM 2018, guitarists and bass players alike have been enjoying the functionality and unrivalled sound quality of the unit. We actually created a blog called 3 Reasons Why The BOSS GT-1000 Is Really Special, discussing 3 of the key features that make this stand out so much, but trust me when I say that there’s so many more reasons that this is easily one of the best multi-effects pedals ever made.

So why is it one of the best multi effects pedals?

The Boss GT-1000 Guitar Effects Processor is by far the best multi-effects pedal that the team at Boss have ever come up with. This is jam-packed with the entire back catalogue of Boss stomp box effects as well as tones from the coveted "500" series Delay, Modulation and Reverb multi FX pedals. So, you have over 116 types of effects to create music with – making it a no-brainer for Boss fans in general and those who need a huge array of expertly crafted FX.

There’s 10 switches for you to activate your effects and trigger patches as well as a smooth expression pedal for wah, volume and swell sounds too.

There’s also a huge amount of amp models packed in, included classic British and American amps, with a host of iconic patches too!

The key feature that makes the GT-1000 stand out from the crowd is the inclusion of the ingenious AIRD (Augmented Impulse Response Dynamics) technology which ensures your effects respond correctly with the likes of tube amps and don’t muddy your sound. You can read more about the AIRD technology here, but in a nutshell, it ensures the dynamics of your unique amp are preserved. With other multi effects, you might find have to turn your amp emulations off if you want your effects to respond correctly to YOUR amp, but with the GT-1000 you won’t have to do that as you can select which type of amp you’re playing with and the pedal will respond correctly.

Want to go smaller and more compact? Check out the Headrush Gigboard Guitar Effects Processor - a smaller version for those on the move.

10. HeadRush Pedalboard Guitar Amp And FX Modelling Processor - £899

HeadRush Pedalboard Guitar Amp And FX Modelling Processor

Winner of the prestigious Music Inc. Product Excellence Award, 2017, the HeadRush Pedalboard Guitar Amp And FX Modelling Processor wholeheartedly deserves a spot on our best multi FX pedals list, thanks to the huge amount of effects within as well as its vast array of amplifier, cabinet and mic models. This is one of the best options for working musicians, yet still remains affordable.

So why is it one of the best multi effects pedals?

The headrush pedalboard features 33 amplifier models as well as 15 cabinet, 10 microphone, 6 distortion, 5 dynamic/EQ, 11 modulation, 7 reverb/delay, 8 rotary and 5 expression models inside, all of which have been meticulously crafted to provide professional guitarists with world class sound.
There’s 12 footswitches for you to control all your sounds and effects as well as a smooth expression pedal that can control swells, wah and even make parameter changes. A looper with 20 mins of record time is ideal for songwriters, buskers and those who need to be able to write music anywhere. It especially shines when coupled with the HeadRush FRFR-112 2000 Watt Powered Speaker.

One of the key features that makes this stand out is the 7-inch high-resolution touch display which allows you to move amps, effects and set up your pedal board to exactly how you want it, sculpting the chain to your exact specifications. Want to run a reverb pedal before a distortion? Well, just move it around using the touch screen! The OLED scribble-strip and assignable colour LEDs appear above the switches and allow you to keep track of where your effects are – a great idea!

An industry standard, professional-level multi effects pedals that touring musicians will love.

11. Line 6 Helix Guitar Effects Processor Floorboard - £1199

Line 6 Helix Guitar Effects Processor Floorboard

Last but by no means least, we have one of the most powerful effects and guitar processors ever created – the Line 6 Helix Guitar Effects Processor Floorboard. When this was released, the guitar world really had to take notice as this was more than just a multi-effects unit, but a complete collection of effects, amps, speaker cabs and microphones to provide users with every sound they’re ever likely to need.

So why is it one of the best multi effects pedals?

This is basically the same as having an entire studio’s worth of gear under your feet. You have 72 amp models to play with, painstakingly recreated from reference amps such as Vox Ac30 amps, Hiwatt Custom 100, Fender amps and more. There’s 194 effects to choose from ranging from distortion to modulation to delay, compression, wah – basically any effect you can think of! There’s also 37 cabinets that you can choose from which gives each amp model and effect a unique sound as well as 16 microphones which provide unique tonal qualities to your overall sound– we challenge you to get bored of this!

MIDI connectivity has also been included, allowing you to take control of your existing synth or sampler with ease. In addition, the Helix features a 6.2 inch 800x480-pixel LCD display for easy editing, customisable scribble strips above the 12 capacitive-sensing footswitches and an expression pedal that can actually be used to edit parameters of a pedal so you don’t have to bend down and start twiddling knobs. Best of all, you can even integrate existing hardware and effects pedals in to your Helix and control them through the unit. We could talk about how this is one of the kings of the multi-effects world all day, but just watch the video below and see for yourself!

Shop a full range of effects pedals over at PMT Online today or call in to your local PMT Store to speak to one of our experts about your needs.

guitar effects pedals

*Prices are correct as of May 2018

BOSS BCK-6 Solderless Pedalboard Cable Kit

£43.00 Add To Cart

Fender 6" / 15cm Custom Shop Patch Cable, Tweed Black

£5.95 Add To Cart

BOSS BIC-PC 15cm Patch Lead with Angled 1/4" Jack

£11.00 Add To Cart

Stagg SG-A108BK Universal Guitar Stand

£15.90 Add To Cart

Klotz KIK 3M Jack Guitar Cable Black

£15.00 Add To Cart

Boss KTN-100 Katana 100w Combo Amplifier

£255.00 Add To Cart

2 Comments on “11 Best Multi Effects Pedals Of All Time”

  • todd miller)
    16th February 2019

    All I saw was Boss and Line 6. I've owned a VOX Tonelab LE for several years now and I'm totally pleased with it. There's so many amp, cab, modulation, reverb, overdrive, distortion, flanger, chorus, etc. effects with 120 banks that...well, you get the idea. Never had a problem with. It Actually uses a real Valve (12AX7). In my mind, it ranks right up there with the Boss GT1000. Check it out!

    • Lee Glynn
      20th February 2019

      A classic pedal Todd! -Lee

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *