EarthQuaker Devices Plumes Guitar Effects Pedal Review (May 2024)


Last updated on May 28, 2024 5:01 pm Details


In this review post, we’re going to be discussing the EarthQuaker Devices Plumes Small Signal Shredder Overdrive Guitar Effects Pedal, including an overview of its unique features.

Product Description

Plumes is an overdrive based around that classically overdone tube-like circuit you all know, and amps crave. While this particular circuit has been done to death, we here at EarthQuaker Devices brand of special effects pedals think the Plumes offers an original take on the old, tired dead horse everyone loves to beat on. You can’t get enough of it, so we are giving you some more. Doctor’s orders and whatnot….

For starters, we’ve done away with the sacred 4558 IC and the classic BJT transistor buffers and replaced them with JFET operational amplifiers, and raised the input impedance to nearly 10 megaohms! This offers lower noise, better signal integrity, and more chime in the high end. We power this OpAmp by taking the 9v input and internally converting it to +/- 9v to give it more headroom. The end result is a more three-dimensional tone with added clarity that really pushes a nice tube amp over the edge. You might notice how those badass leads you’re always ripping will blast over those awful, no-good cymbals your drummer is constantly bashing around on. It sounds like diamonds…a million f**king diamonds!

We’ve also added three different clipping options for your consideration. Mode 1 is symmetrical clipping utilizing a pair of light-emitting diodes. This is the crunchiest setting the Plumes has to offer. When played through a clean amp, it’ll deliver a reasonable facsimile of that classic black and gold British valve amp tone. If you already set your amp dirty, using this mode will make it filthy. Mode 2 is clean boost mode. This eliminates the soft clipping diodes altogether and leaves you with a straight OpAmp drive. This is perfect for pushing your clean tone out in front or driving the preamp of an already overdriven amp into tasteful breakup territory. Mode 3 is an asymmetrical silicon diode arrangement similar to the stock screamer but with more output and clean clarity; the tone some people describe as “transparent”. It’s almost as if your clean tone is blended in with a slightly less clean tone, ya know? Using this model gives a warmer low-end response and lower output. It’s less hard on your amp and your ears. It’s a classic pleasant tone the whole band can enjoy.

Not enough for you? We’ve also improved the way the classic tone control operates while still leaving it familiar enough to keep you warm and comfortable. It’s still a safe space, no worries in here. It’s now useful throughout the whole range. The low end is big and clear, and the high end is bright and cutting without killing the mids. Just the right amount of tonal tickling to excite those eardrums yet still give that familiar mid-heavy drive.

Product Features

  • Weight: 396 g
  • Status LED
  • True bypass
  • Metal housing
  • Bypass footswitch
  • 6.3 mm Mono jack input/output
  • Current consumption: 25 mA
  • Level, tone, and gain controls
  • Low to Medium Gain Overdrive
  • Noiseless relay-based soft-touch circuit
  • Works as a latching and momentary switch
  • Dimensions (L x W x H): 117 x 64 x 57 mm
  • Power supply via optional 9 V DC power supply
  • Improved working range of the tone controller
  • Harmonises with electric guitars, basses, and synthesizers
  • Innovative development of the legendary green overdrive pedal with more headroom, less background noise, and significantly better signal integrity
  • 3-Way toggle switch for the three clipping modes (Symmetrical LED / asymmetrical silicon / No Diode OpAmp Drive)

Pros & Cons


  • Strong build
  • Priced affordably
  • Very reputable
  • Positive consumer ratings
  • Worth the investment
  • Wonderful audio output
  • Ideal for recording and live performances


  • When you switch between clipping modes, the level varies dramatically

EarthQuaker Devices Plumes Guitar Effects Pedal Demo

Our Verdict

The Plumes is a really convincing drive that delivers three great-sounding flavors at an affordable price. In the crowded TS-style overdrive market, the Plumes stand apart. And, while it accomplishes many of the things you’d expect from a Tube Screamer quite well, it also generates numerous unusual tones—all at a very reasonable price.

Where to Buy

The best place to buy this product has to be Amazon, due to their competitive pricing and fantastic customer service.

EarthQuaker Devices Plumes Small Signal Shredder Overdrive Guitar Effects Pedal (ERQ

as of May 24, 2024 1:04 pm

Pricing History

Price History for EarthQuaker Devices Plumes Small Signal Shredder Overdrive Guitar Effects Pedal (ERQ


Current Price $99.00 May 24, 2024
Highest Price $99.00 December 31, 2023
Lowest Price $79.20 November 17, 2023
Since November 17, 2023

Last price changes

$99.00 December 31, 2023
$79.20 November 17, 2023

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Best Overdrive Pedals Under $100 (2022)

Additional information

Item Weight

13.6 ounces

Product Dimensions

6 x 3 x 3 inches

Item model number


Date First Available

August 3, 2019

Color Name



9 Volts


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