One of the more interesting effects pedals you can find is the octave pedal. Whether for guitar or bass, an octave pedal adds depth, shine, and body to your tone and sound.
There are some octave pedals that are more like pitch shifting pedals. Yet, they are often so similar that you would have a hard time telling the difference.
For the purist, analog octave pedals provide more realistic voicing. But, that doesn’t mean digital octaves are useless, just that you will get slightly different results.
The real question is, which octave pedal is the best for you?
Let’s go the best octave pedals currently available to find out…
Top 10 Best Octave Pedals In 2021 On The Market Reviews
1 Electro-Harmonix Pitch Fork Guitar Pitch Effect Pedal
A very dynamic octave pedal with plenty of range.
Hit high and dig low…
This octave pedal features three shift modes. You can set it to up, down, or dual, and it can transpose three octaves higher or lower. This allows you to hit some very melodic combinations.
In addition, it comes with an 11-position Shift knob to dial in different chromatic intervals.
Make your own styles…
This octave pedal has some cool functions to shape unique sounds. The special LATCH and MOMENTARY modes control how the footswitch is used.
In Latch mode, the footswitch turns the effect on and off. In the MOMENTARY mode, the footswitch engages the effect only when held down. This means you can have brief moments of the effect.
Likewise, there is an expression pedal input as well. Therefore you can control the pitch shift manually while playing. It’s a really good option that allows you to shape your glissando styles in real-time.
- Three pitch shift modes.
- Plus or minus three octaves.
- 11-position shift knob.
- LATCH and MOMENTARY modes.
- Versatile and expressive.
- Expression pedal compatible.
- Tends to color the tone.
- A bit pricey.
- Some players have noted durability concerns.
2 Electro Harmonix Micro POG Polyphonic Octave Generator Guitar Effects Pedal
Add some dynamic flavoring to your instrument.
An octave pedal that lets you adjust the volume of the octave effect. The Octave Up knob increases the volume of one octave above the dry signal. The Sub Octave knob adjusts the volume for one octave below the dry signal.
As a result, you can play around with the levels to shape and hone a distinct sound. Along with the Dry knob, you can create subtle choirs or raucous symphonies. Therefore, you can easily make your 6-string sound like a 12-string with a few turns of the knobs. Plus, this pedal can work with other amplified instruments. However, it is not recommended for use with electric bass guitars.
Sturdy and in-sync…
The tracking on this octave pedal is really fast. The pedal responds to your adjustments with ease. Also, the effect does not lag behind the dry signal. The effects are sharp and in-time.
Furthermore, the pedal has a rough and ready die-cast chassis. This works to protect the components and ensure the effect sounds like it should.
Built from a legend…
The original POG octave pedal is still considered a perfect pedal. The Micro POG takes what made the original great and makes it smaller in size. This makes it friendlier for your pedalboard. Yet, it retains the qualities that made the first POG so awesome.
- Polyphonic octave generator.
- Separate volume control for high and low octave effects.
- Dynamic and detailed.
- Great 12-string guitar sounds.
- Pedalboard-friendly size.
- The effect tends to thin the tone.
- Has a distinct electronic sound.
3 DigiTech Whammydtv-01 DT Drop Tune Guitar Effects Pedal – Best Octave Pedal with Whammy
A whammy and an octave pedal all-in-one. Includes a drop-tuning feature and true bypass.
Stand out performance…
This octave pedal uses true polyphonic shifting. Drop or raise the tuning by seven half-steps. Likewise, you can drop or raise an entire octave.
This allows you to seriously modify your guitar sounds. You can switch between different sounds with just the tap of your toes.
Work it the way you want…
The Whammy feature on this pedal allows for versatility and dynamic responses. The whammy pedal can be used to shift the pitch. This is the same as a stand-alone Whammy pedal.
Additionally, the whammy pedal can be used to change the octave and overall tuning of your guitar. This means you can program your preferred tunings. Switch from dropped D to open G with a few taps on the pedal.
And there’s more…
Furthermore, the momentary footswitch allows for hammer-on and pull-off effects. What can’t this pedal do? Make the tea, that’s about it!
- Polyphonic shifting.
- Drop tuning footswitch.
- Whammy pitch-shift effects.
- Momentary hammer-on and pull-off effects.
- Versatile and dynamic.
- A bit bulky and takes up a lot of board space.
- Slightly expensive.
4 BOSS OC-3 Electronic Keyboard Pedal or Footswitch (OC3) – Best Octave Pedal for Acoustic Guitars
A compact pedal that offers true polyphonic octaves.
First of its kind…
The Boss OC-3 delivers superb octave effects all in a compact package. Based on the legendary Boss original octave pedal, this little guy takes your sound to new heights. Three different Mode settings provide a range of sound diversity. There is an octave 2, polyphonic, and drive mode to help shape your sound.
Furthermore, the new drive pumps in more distortion. The result is a more aggressive and thicker tone.
Big sound in a small size…
You can control the overall effect level. Add subtlety or an explosion of polyphonic effects to your sound.
When the Drive mode is selected, you can adjust the drive strength. This means you can dial in some heavy and thick over-driven gnarls.
This pedal can be used to add bass to solo acoustic guitars. The octave effects allow you to flesh-out the low-end while fingerpicking. The result is a more melodious acoustic set.
In fact, it is probably the best octave pedal for acoustic guitar, and this pedal is built for both guitar and bass.
- True polyphonic octave effects.
- The new drive adds crunchiness and thickness.
- Suitable for both guitar and bass.
- Compact size.
- Sounds can be a bit artificial.
- No true bypass.
- Tracking is not always true.
5 EarthQuaker Devices Tentacle V2 Analog Octave Up Guitar Effects Pedal – Best Basic Octave Pedal
An analog octave pedal based on the Hoof Reaper pedal.
Simple and sweet…
This pedal uses an analog octave up effect to give you a swelling tone and sound. When playing above the 12th fret, the effect becomes more pronounced. Likewise, using the neck pickup will enhance the overall effect.
There are no complex controls for this pedal. A single footswitch engages or disengages the effect. Coupled with True Bypass, your tone and signal will not be affected by the pedal. Compact in size as well. The Tentacle offers excellent reach without any extra bells and whistles.
A useful feature is the Flexi-Switching technology. This lets you choose between momentary and latching switching.
The momentary function allows you to engage the effect for as long as you want. Hold down the footswitch and release it when you want to switch off the effect. The latching function is a tap of the footswitch, which engages the octave effect. This is the normal operation of most effects pedals.
- Classic analog octave effect.
- Swelling octave up effect.
- Compact and easy to use.
- Flexi-Switching technology.
- True Bypass.
- No dropped octaves.
- Cannot adjust the strength of the effect.
6 MXR M288 Bass Octave Deluxe – Best Octave Pedal for Headroom
An analog octave bass pedal that offers excellent tracking.
This octave pedal features Constant Headroom Technology (CHT). It provides you with loads of headroom along with superior tracking.
Combined with the analog circuit, this pedal delivers an organic tone, and it is rich and clear.
Bring the boom…
The analog octave provides you with two independent voices. These two octaves create a huge swell of low-end thickness. Additionally, there is a Mid Plus switch on this pedal. This allows you to boost the midrange at your preferred frequency. This adds another layer of sound-shaping to your bass guitar.
Well-built and True Bypass makes this a high-quality pedal. A nice option for bass octave up pedal.
- Analog circuit.
- Constant Headroom Technology.
- Two independent octaves.
- Midrange frequency boost.
- True Bypass.
- Control knobs are a little confusing.
- Takes time to dial-in a preferred sound.
- Tends to muddy the low E string.
7 TC Electronic Sub’ N’ Up Octaver Pedal with TonePrint – Most Versatile Octave Pedal
One of the leading octave pedals. It is loaded with features that allow you to enjoy incredible polyphonic tracking.
The octave-engine featured in this pedal provides octave-up and two sub-octaves. Hence the name, Sub’ N’ Up. This lets you expand on harmonious highs and stupendous lows in your sound. Likewise, this pedal delivers on perfect polyphonic tracking.
Additionally, this pedal features a classic monophonic octave. As a result, you can add subtle layers to solos and leads with some old-school octave tones. This also makes it a good choice for the best pedal to simulate bass.
Another cool feature is TonePrint enabled technology. TonePrint allows you to beam preset octave settings directly to the pedal. You can also store your own custom settings in the TonePrint app. Furthermore, the TonePrint technology includes a modulation feature. This means you can pump out some seriously ambient and out-of-this-world tones and effects.
A well-built pedal with True Bypass and optional buffered bypass for effects loops. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a more versatile octave pedal.
- Polyphonic and classic monophonic settings.
- Two sub-octave control knobs.
- TonePrint technology-enabled.
- Perfect polyphonic tracking.
- Versatile customizations.
- True Bypass.
- Optional buffered bypass, and Kill-Dry switch.
- Polyphonic settings sound very artificial.
- TonePrint doesn’t work well with Apple products.
8 Donner Digital Octave Guitar Effect Pedal Harmonic Square 7 modes – Most Versatile Budget Octave Pedal
A digital circuit octave that includes True Bypass. Sturdy and stable, this pedal offers very transparent tones.
Seven effects and three modes…
The simple design of this pedal allows you to choose between seven different effects. Each mode acts like a pitch shift. Along with the seven modes, there is a 3-way toggle switch. The three modes are Sharp, Detune, and Flat. Each setting controls whether the shift is up, down, or both.
Therefore, you have a wide array of effects and tones to play around with. You can dial in a setting that sounds almost like a bass guitar. On the other hand, you can tweak out some funky brilliance and shimmering octave voices. Plus, certain settings will give you an almost synth keyboard type of sound.
All of which makes this pedal extremely versatile and dynamic. And it could be the best guitar pedal bass simulator around.
Compact and durable…
Along with amazing tone possibilities, this pedal is small and sturdy. The housing is 100% aluminum-alloy. This makes it very strong and ensures stable effects tracking.
Its compact size helps to free up space on your pedalboard.
- Seven different semitone effects and three different mode settings.
- Pitch shift emulation.
- Extremely versatile.
- Excellent tracking.
- Compact and durable.
- True Bypass.
- Very affordable.
- Not a true octave pedal.
- Can affect signal clarity when not engaged.
- Does not include an adapter.
9 JOYO JF-12 Voodoo Octava Guitar Pedal – Best Budget Octave Pedal with Fuzz
Tone shift effects alongside Fuzz tones. A unique pedal that offers a huge tonal range and distinct sound.
Fun and Fuzz…
The main distinction of this pedal is the fuzz knob. In fact, this is actually more of a fuzz pedal than an octave pedal. However, the combination of creamy, crazy fuzz tones and octave up makes for a wildly entertaining pedal.
The octave up is either engaged or not. It uses a simple footswitch to activate it. However, it does a good job of adding just the right amount of octave voicing to your sound. Of course, the downside is you can’t really play with the octave settings. It’s either on or off.
Adjust to taste…
The fuzz effect has an independent control knob. This means you can add oodles of fuzz or keep it fizzing in the background. Along with a toggle for either normal or mid-cut settings, you can enhance your tone even more.
Featuring True Bypass and rugged housing, this pedal delivers great value at a low price. It is easily the best affordable octave fuzz pedal on the market.
- Serious fuzz effects.
- Simple octave up footswitch.
- Normal and Mid-Cut modes.
- Sturdy and strong.
- True Bypass.
- Very affordable.
- The octave effect cannot be adjusted.
- More of a pitch shift than an octave effect.
10 Mooer Audio Micro Series Tender Octaver MK II Guitar Effects Pedal – Easiest to use Budget Octave Pedal
Simple operations coupled with three modes. This pedal delivers octave-voicing that adds dynamics and variety to your sound.
Three modes for three styles…
The toggle-switch features three modes: Fat, Tight, and Swell. Each mode accentuates different octave voices. The Fat mode gives you loads of booming low-end octaves. It also delivers gentle upper octave voicing. The result is a very natural shimmering, thick sound, and tone resembling a simulated bass guitar.
The Tight mode does just what it says. The lower and higher octaves are tightened up, giving your sound lots of bite and shine. And finally, the Swell mode which delivers automatic volume swelling of the octaves. This means you are getting a smooth, full attack, and creamy release.
Adjust the sub and up…
Another nice feature is the independent control knobs for the sub and upper octaves. This allows you to tweak how high or low you want the octave to go. Furthermore, this makes using the pedal very easy. Dialing-in your preferred tone and sound is quick and painless.
- Three different modes.
- Independent sub and upper octave control knobs.
- Simple operation.
- Great tracking and clarity.
- Compact and sturdy.
- Tends to be noisy.
- Dry through option is not uncolored
Best Octave Pedals Buyer’s Guide
Now that we have had a chance to look at the best octave pedals, there are some other things to consider.
First of all, octave pedals can easily be confused with pitch-shifting pedals. If you are looking for pure octave voicing, then going for an analog circuit is the best option. This is because the analog circuit is actually creating octaves.
Pedals that use digital circuits/engines tend to act more like pitch shift pedals. And there are no actual octave voices added to your sound. Instead, you are getting changes in the pitch.
This can be an important distinction. Knowing what kind of sound and tone you are looking for can help you decide which pedal is the best.
Looking for more superb pedals?
Once you’ve chosen your dream octave pedal, you’re going to need somewhere to put it, so take a look at our review of the Best Guitar Pedal Boards.
However, it might get very lonely on there all by itself, so check out our reviews of the Best Reverb Pedal, the Best Flanger Pedal, the Best EQ Pedals, the Best Phaser Pedals, or the Best Tremolo Pedals currently available, so that it has some company.
So, what are the Best Octave Pedals?
All of the pedals we reviewed here offer their own distinct tones and sounds. However, we know there is always one that stands out from the rest.
Therefore, the Best Octave Pedal is the…
This pedal is a pure analog octave pedal. There is only on and off. And it’s so simple to use, it’s a no-brainer.
The octave tones are pure and clear. It adds swelling, shine, and shimmer to your guitar. It’s well-built, durable, and won’t color your dry signal. Additionally, the momentary function allows you to easily use this pedal for brief moments to create textures and soundscapes.
Overall, it delivers exactly what genuine octave voicing should.
We hope you found this information helpful. Whatever pedal you decide on, we are certain you will find more reasons to pick your ax and play.