NAMM 2024: Why put one dirt pedal on your ‘board when you can put 200 on it, right? That’s the logic behind the Zoom’s latest release, the MS-200D+ MultiStomp, a digital pedal packing some 200 overdrive, distortion and fuzz sounds in one compact unit.
It seems improbable. Maybe even illegal. And the LCD screen, bright yellow enclosure and array of buttons makes it look adjacent to the retro-gaming industry. But this is Zoom’s cutting-edge approach to multi-functionality.
It has programmed 164 original drive/distortion/fuzz sounds and 36 emulated from classic units (the TS suggesting that the obligatory Tube Screamer overdrive pedal emulation is present and correct) to put this together. As they say in rehearsal rooms across Middle-earth, this might be the one drive pedal to rule them all.
It's certainly a space-saver, and customisable too. Players can create their own distortion sounds, making their own custom patches, with deeper edits and the search for fresh electric guitar tones made more easy by the Handy Guitar Lab App.
Those who have seen, heard or played any of Zoom’s MultiStomp units or its G2 Four multi-effects pedals for guitar will recognise the Cross Key switches on the MS-200D+. The user experience is very similar, with four encoder knobs (Add, Delete, Library, Menu) to help you dial in a sound. The rubber footswitches let you cycle through presets and scroll parameters.
In an era of OLED TV screens and 4K Blu-ray transfers, the LCD screen might seem like a throwback but it makes the most of its small footprint by changing colour according to drive sound, so you when you are on the dark and dimly lit stage whether the MS-200D+ is in edge-of-breakup mode or set to breathing fire out of your speaker cone.
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Zoom lets players mix, match and blend sounds to create new flavours of overdrive, distortion and fuzz. You can run drives in parallel, digitally daisy-chain them together, and toggle between them on the fly.
Boost is also an option, too, should you only want to give the front-end of your guitar amp a little punch on the kisser. With the MS-200D+ you can have any guitar tone you like, just so long as it is not clean. There’s even an onboard chromatic guitar tuner.
The MultiStomp MS-200D+ is priced £166 / €189, and will be shipping sometimes between April and June 2024. The MS-200D+ follows on from the MS-50G+, which was unveiled a couple of months back, and boasts a similar design, presenting something of a greatest hits of Zoom, with 100 effects including various drives, modulation effects, delays, reverbs, compression, filters and more, with players able to run six of them simultaneously.
For more information, head over to Zoom.