Chellee Guitars & Effects is back in the saddle with the introduction of Ponyboy Overdrive Version 2. The next-generation Ponyboy V2 pedal sounds identical to the Original Ponyboy (V1), with one key difference under the hood—relay soft switch bypass switching. The traditional mechanical bypass switch has been replaced by a more reliable microcontroller-operated relay bypass switching system that uses in-house-designed software to operate the relay and LED, along with a subtle mute circuit that reduces the “pop” induced by mechanical switching. It’s a softer transition in a sturdy pedal with excellent value.
Like V1, the Ponyboy V2 is inspired by the now legendary Klon Centaur overdrive design. However, there are key differences between a Ponyboy and a Klon Centaur pedal. The Ponyboy is built without the hard-to-obtain NOS components, achieving what others have not – a great blend between sparkly boost and transparent drive without the harsh, ultra-high frequencies often found in Klon Centaur clone pedals. Chellee adds its own flavor in the form of voice switching. This extra functionality shifts the frequency of the active Tone control down into the mid frequency range, which fattens up the tone when boosting the EQ. It also excels in scooping out mids when the tone is cut.
The Ponyboy V2 is available in a tiny package without any surface mount components. Chellee also made the decision to leave the battery connection out of V2 designs in order to provide more room to lay out components and further increase the reliability of effects. V2 pedals still use Switchcraft stereo input and output jacks, Teflon-insulated Mil spec hookup wires and Chellee’s unique PCB built-in wire strain relief.
While Ponyboy V2 is tonally identical to V1, there are important labeling differences. V1 initially had the same control labels as a Klon Centaur since it has a similar circuit, but in V2, the switch and Treble control have been renamed to better indicate what they actually do. The word “Overdrive” has also been added so that it’s abundantly clear what this pedal does. Another surface difference is that the LED brightness in V2 pedals has been reduced and the bulb diffused, which eliminates the need for tape or marker to avoid blindness on stage or shadows on the ceiling.
Handmade in the U.S. and backed by a two-year warranty, Ponyboy V2 is available for $159, well below even the most affordable boutique designs. Learn more about the features and watch a demo at www.chellee.com.