EarthQuaker Devices Special Cranker Review: New Amazing Overdrive Pedal! (2023)

EarthQuaker Devices Special Cranker

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
  • Boost / Medium-Gain Overdrive
  • Gives the signal extra grit and a rich boost without changing the tone
  • Exceptionally dynamic response to the guitar’s volume control
  • True Bypass

EarthQuaker Devices Special Cranker Review

Expanding upon their cherished Speaker Cranker, the EarthQuaker Devices Special Cranker is an all-analog boost and overdrive pedal for driving your amps hard while nonetheless retaining your tone.

On guitars, the Special Cranker can create stunning boosts in addition to gnarly overdrives that also retain your guitar’s unique timbre for a simple distinction of notes and chords. Nevertheless, as soon as fed more advanced materials similar to synths and drums, the Special Cranker will get a bit extra wild and crunchy, accentuating all the wealthy harmonic signals in your sounds.

The Special Cranker is an all-discrete analog distortion enhancement gadget designed to present your signal with some additional grit and boost without drastically altering your tone and retaining all the pure nuances and character of your amp.

EarthQuaker Devices Logo

With extra controls at hand to form your tone, the Special Cranker posits itself as extra versatile than its out-of-production predecessor, but the concept is similar. As EQD says: it’s like sticking an additional preamp tube in your guitar amp, which means it won’t step throughout your electric guitar tone, but as an alternative flatter it with glowing drive, rounding up the harmonics, including depth, crunch, and sustain, and all that great things.

This pedal picks up where the beloved Speaker Cranker left. It has the identical spongy, dynamic, and touch-sensitive character of the original however with extra gain, double the output volume (now with user-friendly Level management), added Tone management to form your signal, and a diode selector switch that includes the original asymmetrical Silicon diodes in addition to a sizzling, new Germanium diode choice.

The More control goes from practically clear to a medium gain overdrive when at most. This management adjusts the bias of the transistor, so it’s possible you’ll hear just a little noise as you turn the control. Don’t freak out; it’s completely fine. The gain traits are depending on which diodes are chosen.

Not like its predecessor, the Special Cranker options three distinct knobs for an extra malleable enhancing effect with impartial control over gain on the More management, tone, and output level.

The More management’s effect in your incoming sign is dictated by the Mode selector, providing both a Germanium clipping possibility for a smoother but fuller-sounding boost and a Silicon clipping option for in-your-face tones and levels.

EarthQuaker Devices Super Cranker Side and Back

Both are exceptionally responsive to playing dynamics and have glorious clarity. Regardless of how you utilize the Special Cranker, it gives the proper amount of texture to any instrumentalist in search of attitude without sacrificing tone.

The Tone management provides the individual full command over treble frequencies, chopping the highs when counterclockwise and retaining a slight high-frequency enhancement when turned clockwise. The Level management adjusts the output from nothing to just about double at most.

EarthQuaker makes loads of stompboxes and so they are usually fairly good, but the firm’s latest output within the field of natural-voiced overdrive has been so persistently nice it’s starting to get a bit annoying. And this one is right up there with one of the best of them.

Special Cranker Brief Features:

  • Analog overdrive pedal boosts your signal without muddying or coloring your natural tone
  • Level control adjusts overall output; nearly double the original model
  • More knob takes you from subtle dirt to amp-pummeling distortion
  • Tone control tames and adds high frequencies when necessary
  • 2-position diode selector switch takes you from silicon (brighter, modern response) to germanium (softer, rounder tone)
  • True Bypass operation always preserves your tone
  • Silent Flexi-Switch allows for momentary and latching-style switching in the same pedal

Why You Need the Special Cranker

Time to update your overdrive pedal? Well, this might be the pedal for you! The Special Cranker from EarthQuaker Devices is a great and small unit that will add the desired harmonics to the signal, no matter if you will use it on your guitar or any other instrument.

Pretty affordable and compact, you will not be wrong if you decide to go with this small and cute gadget. With simple yet effective parameters, you will have an easy time shaping your sounds!

8.9Expert Score
EarthQuaker Devices Special Cranker

Expanding upon their cherished Speaker Cranker, the EarthQuaker Devices Special Cranker is an all-analog boost and overdrive pedal for driving your amps hard while nonetheless retaining your tone.

  • Great Sound Quality
  • Pretty Compact
  • Simple Controls
  • Really Versatile


This is the end of our brief but complete review of this new pedal. We covered this unit because is both new and good and because it is one more choice when it comes to overdrive pedals.

In case you have any other questions and concerns about this pedal, please let us know in the comment section below or reach out to the respected developer customer service.


Nikoloski is the founder and main content writer and editor of Mixing Tips. With his experience in audio engineering, mixing, and mastering for over 15 years, will provide hands-on experience and expertise in all the matters covered on this website.

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