Visually, the Deep Crunch may look very sober. I almost want to say that it doesn’t do justice to the quality of the pedal.
The fabrication is very robust. The metal chassis, the switches and knobs are solid. The EQ, Gain and Level knobs are well spaced. They also slightly resist when you turn them which is good to precisely dial your tone.
The Deep Crunch is based on the crunch channel of the Soldano SLO-100 amp so you can expect it to deliver a boosted crunch kind of tone. This is indeed the case! The Gain control is very efficient… Actually, the deep crunch can reach a reasonnably high level of gain. It allows to have a wide range of crunch tones.
Gain set to the minimum and Level set to the maximum, the Deep Crunch behaves like a sort of clean boost. It brings a nice dynamics to the clean tone of the amplifier. The Gain control is very progressive. It goes from light crunch tones to a slight distortion. The Level control is highly efficient to control the output level. It allows to really boost the crunch tone.
CabSim switch is an interesting feature of the Deep Crunch. It enables a cabinet simulation. So you can plug the Deep Crunch straight in a console or in a sound card. You can even use the CabSim when plugged in the amplifier. The tone of the cab simulation is darker than the natural tone of the pedal. This didn’t bother me because I liked this tone with less high frequencies and sligthly boosted low frequencies.
The Heptode Deep Crunch overdrive will perfectly suit various music genres from Blues to Hard Rock… As long as you need a good and musical crunchy distorted tone on your guitar ! It is versatile, well built and made in France… I really recommend to try it !! Notice that you can try a VST plugin that emulates the Deep Crunch pedal (free download on Heptode website).
And if you want more gain, you can check Jean-Luc Chtioui’s second pedal : Heptode Heavy Tone. Basically the Heavy Tone gain level starts where the Deep Crunch gain level ends… I liked the Heptode Deep Crunch but I fell in love with the Heptode Heavy Tone!! (review of the Heptode Heavy Tone is coming soon)