Gus-Drive - Summer School Electronics

Sep 10 2022
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summer school electronics gus drive

The Gus-Drive by Summer School Electronics is a wonderful take on the classic distortion/overdrive topology based on the DOD 250.

This is my first time playing a 250-style drive, so I can't tell you how it compares with the original. According to Summer School Electronics, it's a modded 250 with more output, compression and a few other little tweaks.

Whatever tweaks were done to the circuit, this thing rips. At higher gain settings, it comes close to a RAT-type distortion, but with more clarity and punch. At lower gain settings, it feels like a recording console preamp that is working extra hard.

Recording Notes


  • Fidelity Guitars Stellarosa Lite II with Lollar Firebird pickups (bridge pickup)
  • Gus-Drive
  • Strymon Iridium (chime)


  • Stellarosa with different pickup configurations
  • Most parts double tracked and hard-panned left and right
  • Overdubs in the first half of the loop are:
  • Catalinbread Soft Focus, mix about 50% and tamed decay into ...
  • Gus-Drive
  • Walrus Audio Polychrome and Slö used selectively to add movement and space

Ambient Pad


  • JMJ Fender Mustang
  • Keeley Compressor Mini to even it out
  • Gus-Drive, unity volume and gain cranked. Works surprisingly well on bass.
  • Strymon Iridium (round) with bass cabs
  • Mixed with some D.I. signal, low-passed, to recover some bass frequencies.


  • GarageBand Drummer Gavin (indie rock) on the Brooklyn kit
  • Kick and snare treated with the stock GarageBand RAT-style pedal plugin

The whole mix was "mastered" with exciter, limiter and mild compression in the DAW.


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