What makes electric guitars so great is not only their versatility but also the options to make any kind of tones that you want. The expressive qualities this instrument provides are enhanced with the use of specialized effects pedals. In fact, these compact devices have become so popular over the years that almost every guitar has at least some pedals in their collection. After all, this is the most practical and effective way to have both great tone and complete control over every sonic aspect of your musicianship.
However, things are never that simple. They’re far from simple. Just like any electronic device, pedals need power. And things get complicated and impractical when you have to arrange and power up multiple smaller electronic devices, while also keeping them tidy and transporting them to every rehearsal, gig, or a studio session. While all this seems like a logistical nightmare, it’s all made possible using specialized “working surfaces” called pedalboards.
Of course, these can either just be empty surfaces specialized for keeping the pedals tidy, or more complex products that include integrated power supplies. It’s hard to say what’s the “best” here since it depends on personal preferences. However, we dove deeper into this topic and brought a list of what we consider to be the best pedalboards for the money.
SKB Cases 1SKB-PS-8
Although not a very famous brand, SKB Cases make some pretty great pedalboards that help you keep everything in check. The one that caught our attention is their 1SKB-PS-8. This affordable and simple pedalboard is made of hard plastic and features an empty surface where you can arrange your pedals any way that you’d want. You can just attach them using a velcro tape and you’re good to go!
Of course, this pedalboard also comes with an integrated power supply. There are 8 power outputs, all designed for 9-volt devices. The total power output is at 500 mA, which is more than enough for 8 standard pedals. This whole thing is nicely rounded up with an additional carrying bag which will help you carry it around.
ENO Ex Pedalboard
On the other hand, we have some extremely simplified and minimalistic pedalboards that come in handy for some smaller signal chains. For instance, we have this super-cheap and quite practical ENO Ex pedalboard that’s basically just a specially designed metal construction that can hold up to 5 mini-sized pedals, or about 3 or 4 average-sized pedals. Of course, for this one you’ll need a smaller power supply or an adapter with a daisy chain. The pedals are attached using a velcro tape, which is included with the board.
Gator Cases G-Tour Pedalboard-SM
Now, Gator Cases are pretty much well-known among the pedal addicts due to their great reputation for making quality pedalboards. The one that we’re interested in here is their compact and super-practical G-Tour Pedalboard-SM that’s just a simple surface that comes with a hard case. This hard case is cleverly designed and features special shock-absorbing foam padding that will keep your devices safe during transport. Even if you drop it, your pedals are highly likely to stay in place and without damages.
The pedals here are attached using a velcro tape and you’ll need some sort of an external power supply. Overall, this is a pedalboard for those who are either gigging frequently or are traveling with their pedals all the time.
Gator Cases GPB-BAK
Well, Gator Cases are so good that we need to mention at least one more of the company’s pedalboards. Here, we have something a bit different. GPB-BAK is a metal surface with holes. You can either attach pedals using a velcro tape or zip ties. These holes are also very practical as they allow you to keep patch cables and power cables below the surface.
And it’s a pretty big surface as well, that can fit about 10 normal-sized pedals. Of course, you’ll need an external power supply. However, this pedalboard is designed specially to keep the power supply hidden below the surface. There’s a special mounting deck beneath the board that will keep it secured. GPB-BAK also comes with a carrying bag, which is yet another thing that makes it worthwhile.
But, of course, there’s no way to avoid mentioning Boss when there’s any talk about guitar pedals. As far as pedalboards go, they have their super-practical and light BCB-60. This is a hard case with 6 slots for standard compact pedals, an integrated power supply, a lot for a guitar tuner, as well as input, output, send, and return jacks. The power supply can keep up to 1,000 mA of devices in check, while also giving you all the room and safety for your devices.
What’s also great is that you can fit a wah pedal or any larger pedal in there as well. Boss’ BCB-60 is a very practical solution for some smaller setups and you can take it pretty much anywhere with you – to a gig, on a tour, a rehearsal, or a studio session.
But whatever Boss does, Behringer can do it cheaper and simpler. Of course, you can’t expect to have the same quality, but Behringer stuff is definitely more than worth the price. We can also see that with their simple pedalboard PB600. In many ways, it’s similar to the aforementioned Boss BCB-60. It also has slots for 6 standard-sized pedals, a special place for a guitar tuner, an integrated power supply, as well as inputs and outputs. For a fair price, you’ll get all of the same essential features, along with decent quality. Behringer’s PB600 comes as a great solution to all the guitar players operating on a limited budget.