WAMPLER PEDALS Are Here To Let You Know, “Transparent” Tones Don’t Exist

You would say that. Wouldn’t you “Mr. pedal company”? I’m on to you Wampler… trying to poison our minds with your convenient viewpoints.


Wampler Pedals are an effects company from the USA and are fairly popular among guitar pedal aficionados. They also have an awesome web presence with a podcast, a super helpful effects blog and a regularly updated YouTube channel.

On this vlog from that YouTube channel, old-mate from Wampler Pedals gives a, potentially controversial, hot take. He reckons that tones, by definition, will never be “transparent”.

Now whether you agree or not, he makes a pretty logical argument – the coloration is part of the tone. You can’t, nor do you really want to, have the tone unaffected by the pedals or other gear in your chain. You just want it to work together nicely.

However, for those of us with guitar tone OCD, this video may come as a horrifying/nightmarish realization. The perfect tone is an illusion. God is dead. The cake is a lie.

“still so unclean” – anonymous ‘guitar tone OCD’ sufferer

Maybe it’s just more a matter of semantics. Like, I know what someone means when they say they want a transparent pedal. It’s not necessarily literal.

At the same time, I wouldn’t be mad if companies stopped marketing things as “transparent” though. I feel like it lost any literal meaning long ago because every second piece of gear is advertised as transparent.

So, I dunno watchu think? I’d love to see someone rebut this video.

Keep up with more hot takes and cool pedal videos at the Wampler YouTube channel. Or if you want to get some of their tone twisting effects, the Wampler Pedals website can be found here.

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Demigod Zeke studies marketing & economics and produces his friends’ disgusting slam bands.

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