Ibanez Tube Screamer
- Laurence Libin
Electronic device for altering the sound of electric guitars, produced by the Japanese firm Ibanez. Although popularly called a ‘pedal’, it is controlled by means of knobs, typically an overdrive knob that adjusts distortion, a tone knob that affects treble balance, and a level knob for loudness control. On some models a fourth knob provides a harder attack. The Ibanez Tube Screamer’s characteristic tone, boosted in the middle frequencies (‘mid-hump’), mimics the sound of vintage vacuum tube (valve) amplifiers; the device’s circuitry, using operational amplifier (‘opamp’) chips in some versions, also provides advanced effects. Since its introduction in the 1970s the Tube Screamer has been produced in many versions and widely copied. Early examples are sought by collectors. The Nisshin Onpa company, which manufactured the original Ibanez Tube Screamers under their Maxon brand to the designs of S. Tamura in the 1970s and 1980s, nowadays make their own models. The Ibanez brand is owned by the Hoshino Gakki corporation, based in Nagoya. Hoshino Gakki, originated in ...