Pedal Profile: Xotic EP-Booster

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0a790d6d81768da44c59605250bb1022_image_285x367BACKGROUND: The EP-Booster is yet another offering from the Xotic, a company that seems to have a knack for coming out with the right pedal at the right time and making it a top quality product. The EP-Booster is based on the “legendary echo machine EP-3” (I’m told this is the Maestro Echoplex) which the likes of Van Halen, Jimmy Page, and Eric Johnson (I’m assuming Eric Johnson, perhaps it is another Johnson) have all used as preamps -ecause, of course, who wouldn’t think to use an echo machine as a preamp. The EP-Booster is the reincarnation of EP-3 as a peamp (no echo here). This pedal is not only a boost but seems to have an aura of being that almost mythical tone-enhancer-in-a-box we all look for, a pedal that doesn’t change your tone but somehow makes it better.

GUITAR: 1986 Fender MIJ ’62 Tele Reissue

AMP: 65 London Combo, 1985 Mesa Mark III

FIRST IMPRESSION:
For such a small pedal it is heavy and feels very sturdy. If you were to throw it at someone’s head you would knock him out cold. I’m not sure if there is a single Boss pedal that can boast that. It has a silver black tint, which is always good.

PROS:It is probably one of the most sturdy pedals I have ever played which gives me quite a bit of confidence as a guitar player when I step on it. I have replaced one too many (truth be known, three too many) switches in my Line 6 DL-4 so that is a big issue for me.

It does everything a boost should do. That is, it boosts the signal. It does a very good job of this, but I wouldn’t expect anything less. After all it’ as boost. If you screw that up, maybe you shouldn’t be making pedals. Fortunately, Xotic should be making pedals.

It does kind of feel like a “tone enhancer.” I say “kind of” because it is so abstract that it is hard to put concrete words to. Nevertheless, I played my church’s worship set with it turned on (set as low as possible) the entire time.

This pedal is also an impecable paper weight.

…and it has a nice hint of silver…I’m a fan.

CONS: This pedal is so simple I would be worried if there were cons to it. It doesn’t suck tone, feels sturdy, doesn’t take up a lot of space, and does everything it promises. Even the LED is blue. Nothing to complain about here.

FINAL THOUGHTS:
The Xotic EP-Booster is everything a boost should be and then some. Sturdy and durable, this pedal is like a little tank on the board that doesn’t mind sharing space with other pedals. This pedal is not only an exceptional boost, it is also that highly sought after yet very allusive tone enhancer.

Keep sharp,

-Jed

6 Responses to "Pedal Profile: Xotic EP-Booster"
  1. rhoy says:

    mine will definitely stay in use for quite a while. in fact, i saw someone selling it in craigslist and i am ashame to say that i thought about getting it so i can have one always on and then another one just specifically for boosting! 😆

  2. Jed says:

    I had a friend just tell me about a guy who does just that. It’s almost worth doing. Maybe if you got another boost for boost and the EP leave on, it might be easier to swallow.

  3. Josh says:

    Thanks for the great reviews!! Keep on with the blog! I’m a happy reader!

  4. Joshua says:

    I use th exotic sl drive for my initial tone , and just picked up a ep booster . From my experience the ep pedal has a passive sound to it that I really love especially using passive pickups . You can use 18 volts to get an even more passive sound which makes playing leads with ease . I haven’t tried it on anything clean , but I will be experimenting with it some more being I just got it yesterday .

  5. Joshua says:

    Day two using exotic ep booster , today I tried it with my jet city tube amp and orange dual terror tube amp , I also tried it on a old vox Cambridge and it sounds great through every amp , I was amazed . I even tried it as the first pedal n my effects loop before my reverb and delay and was blow away at how the sound was so much clearer and , as I said in my previous post the ep booster is like having passive pickups . I tried it with emg active 81r 89 tw and also tried it using passive Demario petrucci set and it sounds amazing , through both giving the same effect. Another great thing about this pedal is you can use it after your decimAtor or comp to beef up the signal of your amp then hit the dirt and you will hear how the low end stays intact , with tight mids and crisp / silk like highs . I’ve been using my ep boost with the unity gain settings , this is the best response I found for tracking professional sounding guitar tone .

  6. Jed says:

    Thanks for the input man. The EP-Booster is a pretty sweet pedal.

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