DS-1

Distortion

DS-1
Where to Buy

The Benchmark in Guitar Distortion

The DS-1 Distortion is a true icon in the world of guitar effects. Introduced in 1978, BOSS’s first distortion pedal defined a bold new sound, delivering hard-edged attack and smooth sustain that’s been a staple of players for generations. The DS-1 is the top-selling BOSS compact pedal ever, and its original, unchanged design continues to inspire the creation of great music everywhere. The classic DS-1 tone is behind the signature sounds of numerous rock legends, and is ready to fuel your own signature sound today.

Genre-Defining Distortion

Before the DS-1, most distortion pedals produced harsh, buzzy tones and muddy sound at high gain settings. In 1978, BOSS engineers changed all that by developing a unique distortion circuit for the DS-1 that produces tight, hard-edged gain with rich harmonics while retaining the unique characteristics of different guitars and playing techniques. Hard rock, metal, and punk styles began to flourish in the ‘70s and ‘80s, and the DS-1’s tone had a defining influence on these genres. That trend has endured through multiple generations, and players around the world continue to seek out the classic DS-1 sound.

Gain from Mild to Heavy

From its modest three-knob interface, many different sound colors can be coaxed from the DS-1. Its pioneering two-stage circuit incorporates both transistor and op-amp gain stages. This approach is critical to the DS-1’s characteristic low-frequency fullness, which is loved by guitarists that play heavy music genres. The distortion knob offers an extremely wide range, from a mild boost for driving amps and pedals to full-throttle gain for monster rock riffs.

Powerful Tone Shaping

Unlike typical tone controls that only cut highs, the DS-1’s tone circuit features an innovative design that offers far more range. Turning the knob clockwise increases highs and decreases lows, while going counter-clockwise has the opposite effect. This lets you dial in everything from tight, cutting rhythm sounds to smooth, fat lead voices. The tone control is particularly effective for maintaining low-end definition when using the DS-1 as a booster with vintage-style amps, which often sound muddy when driven with other distortion pedals.

Nominal Input Level
-20 dBu
Input Impedance
1 M ohm
Nominal Output Level
-20 dBu
Output Impedance
1 k ohm
Recommended Load Impedance
10 k ohms or greater
Controls
Pedal switch
GAIN knob
TONE knob
LEVEL knob
Indicator
CHECK indicator (Used for indication of check battery)
Connectors
INPUT jack: 1/4-inch phone type
OUTPUT jack: 1/4-inch phone type
DC IN jack
Power Supply
Carbon-zinc battery (9 V, 6F22) or Alkaline battery (9 V, 6LR61)
AC adaptor (PSA series: sold separately)
Current Draw
20 mA
Expected battery life under continuous use
Carbon: Approx. 24.5 hours
Alkaline: Approx. 44 hours
*These figures will vary depending on the actual conditions of use.
Accessories
Owner's manual
Leaflet ("USING THE UNIT SAFELY," "IMPORTANT NOTES," and "Information")
Carbon-zinc battery (9 V, 6F22)
Option (sold separately)
AC adaptor (PSA series)
Size and Weight ( incl. battery )
Width
73 mm
2-7/8 inches
Depth
129 mm
5-1/8 inches
Height
59 mm
2-3/8 inches
Weight
360 g
13 oz
* 0 dBu = 0.775 Vrms
*The specifications are subject to change without notice.
Eric Chaz

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Support

If you have questions about operating your BOSS product, please check our Knowledge Base for answers to the most common questions.
You can also contact our Product Support department by phone or email.
In addition, we have a library of Owner’s Manuals and Support Documents that you can download and reference.

Support Documents