The Horizon Devices Precision Drive is a new overdrive pedal by a company started by Periphery guitarist Misha Mansoor. The pedal was created to combat the lack of drive pedals made for high gain and digital modelling rigs.
The Modern Metal & Rock Overdrive
It's got a built-in noise gate to control any crazy feedback or unwanted noise. It tightens up your tone and gives you more attack or even use it as a simple noise gate.
The Volume and Drive are straightforward to use and don't have any deadspots. You can keep the gain down for when you’re using gain on the amp or use it to drive an already clean amp for percussive mid-gain tones.
The bright control can add presence to darker sounding humbuckers and the Attack knob will do just that. Increase the punchiness of the pedal. It's made for metal and rock and so it'll work really well with lower tunings and even extended range guitars like 7 or 8 strings.
The noise gate is specialised and was not added as an afterthought. In fact, the guys re-designed it 7 times to get it right! It's made to control your gain without destroying the dynamic.
Here's a message from Horizon Devices
Hey guys. My name is Misha Mansoor. Thanks for stopping by.
There are certain things that can just be done better. Things that affect your music.
I founded Periphery because I wanted to make music I loved and have a team of people I trusted that are as dedicated as I am. I learned audio engineering because I wanted to sound as good as possible, and recently partnered with great people to make GetGood Drums. I played a lot of guitars, and figured out exactly what I liked, so I worked with Jackson guitars to release a better guitar for modern musicians.
Seeing a theme?
If there’s a problem, you fix it. Especially if that problem is getting between musicians and their music. You also need a great team.
That’s how Horizon Devices was born.
Our first pedal is called the Precision Drive, but it took a lot of hard work.
Too many overdrives are just copies of old circuits. They were never designed to boost high gain heads. Many of them are far too noisy, completely destroy your bass response, or are just plain cheap.
I wanted to create a fresh, new overdrive that’s envisioned from the ground up as modern design for modern musicians. I knew I would need help, so I enlisted some of my friends from Wired Guitarist, because I knew I couldn’t found a company on my own. However, none of us are electrical engineers.
I feel so lucky, because we got our first choice of pedal companies to work with us on the Precision Drive: MXR. To be honest, this was a huge relief. Making great analog pedals for over 40 years? Inventors of the Carbon Copy and Phase 90? I knew for sure that our production was solid. Then came the hard part.
Over 400 hours of R&D going into the initial circuit. More than 6 revisions just on the noise gate (yep it has a noise gate!). That wasn’t enough though. I wanted Horizon Devices from the very start to be community oriented. What if I loved the pedal and no one else did? Everyone has their blind spots.
I took everything friends, musicians, producers, and engineers have told me over the years, and combined it with specific input from over 4800 guitarists in the Horizon Devices community. That resulted in even more tweaks to the final pedal, but all of this work was worth it.
Months of setting up shipping, building websites, and getting production prepped later, we’re finally here.
Now I have a pedal in my hands that helps me focus on writing music, and avoid fighting my gear to get good tone. The best part is that everyone can have access to that now.
This story is what Horizon Devices is about. Helping the quality of life of modern musicians. Overcoming my own struggles (founding a company is hard!) and doing things right, for the right reasons.
How should I setup my pedal?
We suggest starting with the drive all the way down and the output at about ¾. Turn bright to the right until it cuts properly with your setup, and then adjust the variable attack knob to taste. Keep the gate towards the bottom of its range to just cut noise, and crank it to get a super tight sound. We did make sure the knobs don’t have any “dead spots” though, so experiment with everything (including the drive knob!) to find what works best for you.
Will my 7/8 string sound good with the Precision Drive?
The Precision Drive is voiced to work with lowering tunings better than any other pedal. Not only does it work great for standard 6 strings, but it’ll handle that multiscale 14 string you’ve been waiting to use for years just fine.
Can I use a battery?
Yes! A standard 9v works, in addition to a proper power supply (9v negative tip only).
How does it have a noise gate built in? Isn’t that really expensive?
Overdrives can be the noisiest part of your chain, and are essential for the tight sound on many modern metal recordings. We didn’t want to compromise on what the community wanted, so we made sure you could get that entire sound from one pedal. If you don’t want extra tightness, turn it to the left side of its range and it will only eliminate noise.
Will this work with my Axe FX II/Kemper/Line 6 device?
Yep! We made sure the pedal was voiced to cut through both high gain heads and integrate perfectly with digital modeling rigs.
Does it work like a normal OD?
Yes and no. It does boost your signal, but it is built from the ground up to tighten high gain tones. It won’t be confusing to dial in but will work easier than what you’re used to. It also does vintage crunch and lead tones great as well!
You say it’s a community-driven pedal. How does that work?
We spent hundreds of hours asking modern guitarists what they need out of pedals. For example, we’ve poured through the data of countless polls from our Facebook group of over 4800 members.