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SFT or Pork Loin, help me decide.

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by CliffD, Apr 17, 2010.

  1. CliffD


    Jan 27, 2008
    San Diego/Seattle
    Effects dudes,

    I'm wanting an overdive pedal that retains low end well, plays well with active basses (I have a Roscoe 6er with passive barts and an Aguilar pre), can do a cleanish boost if I want, and can give me a "old school" style thumpy overdrive. I've narrowed my search down to the Catalinbread SFT or a Way Huge Pork Loin. :confused: Lend me your opinions! Gracias.
  2. fitz420

    fitz420 Knows Lows

    Oct 6, 2008
    Pittsburgh, PA
    you can get so many great tones out of the pork loin. it does the clean boost/light OD thing really well, along with being able to cop the old cranked tube amp tones. i can't comment on its compatibility with active pu's. i also can't compare it to the SFT as i have no experience with it.
  3. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    Okay I guess this is where I become useful. I own both pedals and they are both secured on my pedalboard.

    In my experience, the Pork Loin does full-on overdrive better. It responds very well to different picking styles and when you use the clean blend function, you can dial in that exact tone you want.
    This is quite possibly the coolest overdrive pedal I've used.

    I use the PL for my full-on overdrive style. Although I have the clean blend about 50%, it's what I turn to when I want straight overdrive.

    The SFT, on the other hand, is what I use for old-school "pushing an Ampeg B15 to its limit" type tone. This thing shines, particularly when I solo my bridge pickup on my jazz.
    Although it has no clean blend, it does light-OD very well. If you pick soft enough, it's like you're not even using an overdrive pedal.
    But when I did in harder with my fingers or pick, it breaks up and the overdrive begins to shine.

    I love them both, to be honest. I use them for different things. The PL is for my straight overdrive, while my SFT is for lighter-overdrive / old school thump.
    The SFT, to me, is for the times when only a little bit of overdrive is necessary.
    Although the PL does light overdrive really well as well, I like having the PL on a higher gain setting, so I barely have to fiddle with knobs.

    Active basses: I used my old StingRay with both pedals, and they sounded just fine. No worries about clipping or boomy sounds.

    Any more questions for me?
  4. CliffD


    Jan 27, 2008
    San Diego/Seattle
    Nope, cool thanks dude!
  5. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    You're welcome sir. Honestly, you'll do no wrong with either.
  6. kenstee


    Oct 9, 2009
    Well-done and very valuable analysis Valerus...........

    To all: Any feel for how these two stack up head-to-head for passive basses?
  7. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    Well now that I only have passive basses...they both sound phenomenal. Solo a neck pickup on a jazz bass and play it through the Pork Loin and you'll see what I mean.
  8. kenstee


    Oct 9, 2009
    Thanks man. And I'll PM you my address so you can shoot me a Jazz so I can try it out......
  9. CliffD


    Jan 27, 2008
    San Diego/Seattle
    So I'm going with an SFT first, but I can't say I wont eventually try out the Pork Loin!
  10. alirazz


    Jun 30, 2009
    Chambana, IL
    Most guitar centers carry Pork Loins, so you could probably try it out first..
  11. Man, I'm probably getting both of these pedals at some point too, so I'm interested in the opinions of both, especially both together. I will probably start out with the PL, because I can find them on the bay a bit cheaper. My question is, does anyone have one or the other, along with a Music Electronix Submarine? I think those three pedals along with my trusty phaser and opto-comp will have me set!
  12. tonymcbony


    Mar 21, 2006
    I wasn't impressed with my SFT at all.

    Every reasonably gainy setting sounded like farts and the lower settings didn't really do much for me either.

    Others have had great fun with it but for me I felt it just sounded average on guitar and bass.

    I'm interested in the pork loin though, seems llke a very fun pedal but I'd rather build a rat with a clean blend before getting one.
  13. Laurent

    Laurent Supporting Member

    May 21, 2008
    Napa, California
    Nothing to add to Valerus comments which are right on.

    One insight however is the Homebrew Electronics Hematoma sounds very, very similar to the Pork Loin. I own both and I can make these pedals sound so similar that I don't think I would be able to distinguish them blind.

    The differences are: the Hematoma has a booster which compresses the signal just a tad and that's a nice extra feature to have. The Hematoma offers more bass, more tone flexibility and more gain.

    The Pork Loin offers more treble and offers more flexibility on the low gain register. It can introduce a hair of hiss as well if one is really nitpicking. The Pork Loin is really cool looking. How can one resist the purple color?

    Both pedals are really great and again can sound so similar it's almost freakish!
  14. I haven't tried the SFT but the pork loin is the best overdrive pedal I've ever tried. Sounds great with both my passive pbass and my active brice bass.
  15. G.Bisson


    Feb 26, 2009
    Going through this same dilemma myself. Looking for a soft overdrive that is responsive to my playing dynamics. It only has to do one thing, so long as it does it well and doesn't suck bass. Would really like to add another Maxon to my board, but I just know the OOD9 would kill my low frequencies. Pedalboard space is at a premium too so size matters.

    that being said, I've been considering:

    Way Huge Pork Loin
    Catalinbread SFT
    Keeley modded Boss BD2
    HBE Hematoma
    EBS MultiDrive
    Xotic BB

    the pork loin is, well, way huge and I dont need so much tweakability. Sounds really good though.

    would prefer not to have anything Boss on my board so I'll pass up the BD2 :spit:

    I have an older MultiDrive on my second board and it isn't very responsive to dynamics. maybe the new one is, but I already know what to expect and would rather try something else out.

    from clips I've heard of the BB, the tone doesn't impress me, didn't sound very responsive either. :meh: next...

    Valerus's comments made the SFT rise up my list. Guess I've been ignoring this one, have to look into it somemore.

    I keep coming back to the hematoma over and over again. Surprised I haven't given in and bought one yet. Laurent's comments reinforce that this might really be the one for me.

    Not ready to pull the trigger on any one of these yet so I'm keeping my options open and still searching.
  16. banditcosmo

    banditcosmo Supporting Member

    Jul 12, 2002
    Charlottesville, Va.
    does the Pork Lion suck any bass out ? I tried the OCD and I liked it but it did take away some low end.
  17. stflbn


    May 10, 2007
    There's multiple trim knobs inside of Pork Loins. One of them allows you to tweak low end response. When I had a pork loin I kept the trim almost all the way down. Increasing it to max was definitely Way Huge.

    There's a tone of tonal flexibility outside of the Pork Loin, but even more INSIDE via the dip switches if adventuresome.
  18. UnDoNe


    Dec 6, 2002
    Pork Loin has a clean blend too. It sounds grand as an OD.
  19. Valerus


    Aug 4, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    Ha. My experiences with this baby have everything BUT bass loss. It's the grandest OD I've played.

    FYI guys, if I had to choose between the SFT and the Pork Loin, I'd choose the Pork Loin.
  20. I bought a Pork Loin about a week ago and it's now my favorite pedal. It's just fantastic.

    edit: Blend pots are the greatest things ever and every pedal should have one.

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