You may remember that we've previously had a look at a couple of Mad Professor effects pedals: the Mellow Yellow Tremelo and the Fire Red Fuzz.
Suitably impressed, we raved about the features and, but choked a little at price tags that started from. They were hand-wired, but still…
Well aware that the only grumbles is has received regarding its pedals were sparked by the prices, the Finnish company is now offering a number of its stompboxes in a PCB (printed circuit board) format, with the pots, switch and jack sockets mounted on the board.
The use of PCBs has brought the price of the pedals down by a fair margin. That's great, but has tweaking the spec impacted on the brand's hard-earned reputation for great tone?
Whenever you see an overdrive pedal in a green box, or referencing the word 'green' in its model name, it invites comparisons with an old bogie-coloured classic from Ibanez.
The Little Green Wonder features three controls: volume, drive and body. The first two do exactly what you'd expect, while the body control is the LGW's standout feature.
Crank the control up and it acts as a treble booster; turn the control anti-clockwise and it boosts the bass and low mids. No bass sucking antics here, unlike another pedal we can think of.
Moving swiftly on, Mad Professor suggests that the Little Green Wonder is something of a multi-tasker. Of course its day job is as an overdrive pedal, but the company also suggests employing it as a booster pedal or to calm down an overly bright amplifier or raspy sounding fuzz.
The Little Green Wonder produces a warm, valve amp-gain monster that covers a multitude of sins; it's more about allowing the tone of your guitar, and the dynamics of your playing, to shine through.
It seems to us that how you use the body control depends on what guitar you're playing. With a Tele and the control fully anti-clockwise to fatten up the tone with some added bass, we get a great tough Tele rhythm vibe a la Keef and The Boss.
Switching to our humbucker-loaded Strat, the extra sizzle activated when cranking the body control all the way up is much appreciated. It's a great way of tuning this pedal to suit your personal guitar and playing style. Few overdrive pedals are this versatile or addictive.
Mad Professor will still make you a hand-wired version of all these pedals if you wish. The thing is, based on the quality of the sounds on offer from these lower-cost factory models, we don't think you need to splash out all that extra lolly.
We'd be surprised if many people could really hear the difference between the hand-wired and circuit board jobs anyway. Utilising a PCB construction hasn't diluted any of the wow factor that you equate with Mad Professor pedals.