TC Electronic NDR-1 Nova Drive Effects Pedal : Review

NDR-1 Nova Drive

Analog heart and digital control for a dual engine

The analog circuit, derived from the Nova System, is the heart of this excellent TC Electronic device that provides a dual engine, for Overdrive and Distortion, an excellent flexibility and a preset feature to store and recall your patches.
Obviously, it is an high quality product with the true bypass, and we know how much this characteristic is important.


  • Overdrive
  • 4 controls: Overdrive, Level, Tone and Mix.

    All the available knobs for this section

    As you can see it features a knob, called Mix. It adjusts the level between the direct sound of the guitar and the effect and, in the manual, TC Electronic explains that it works better with single-coil pickups, above all with Blues and Rock.

  • Distortion
  • 4 controls: Distortion, Level, Bass and Treble.

    For the adjusting of this section

    Quantity of the effect, volume and equalization.

Mode and Routing

Undoubtedly, the flexibility is the added value of the Nova Drive. The two switches for the operative mode and for the signal routing extend the use of this device and can drastically change the functioning. If you want the manual includes a detailed description of these two switches. TC Electronic provides the manual in 6 languages.

Mode and signal Routing


With this switch the user chooses how Overdrive and Distortion operate.

  • Normal
  • In this mode the two sections are completely independent, therefore in this situation it is like a double pedal. The order of the two effects, in the signal chain, depends on the routing selection.

  • Toggle
  • This setting is the more appropriate to switch between the two effects, simply by tapping one of the two main switches.

  • Bank
  • With this selection it is ready to use the presets. The Nova Drive provides 9 banks with two presets for each bank, so a total number of 18.


This switch lets you choose between three signal routings. An important thing. When the user stores a patch it stores the chosen routing too.

  • Serial A
  • Serial A
  • Serial B
  • Serial B
  • Parallel
  • Parallel


Really an excellent device. Quality sound and a great flexibility are the two main characteristics of the Nova Drive. Yes, this TC Electronic product isn't cheap but we must consider all the characteristics and the high quality. The analog circuit and the control for the signal routing are two important added values.

Other reviews

Effects (Pedals and Floorboards)

  • Distortion | Digitech

    A pedal that has been clearly designed only for the Metal. The equalization section is complete and efficient. The range of the middle frequency is 200Hz-5.0kHz. Two distortions: Tight and Loose.

  • Hot Head
  • Distortion | Digitech
    Hot Head

    Let's say immediately that, considering the price, really low, this Digitech pedal is a good investment. It provides a great gain amount and, in addition, a speaker emulator. So, it can be connected directly to a mixer.

  • CE-5
  • Chorus | Boss

    With 4 controls this chorus pedal turns out rather flexible. Yes, the sound is digital, and this is clear, but the overall result is valid. The CE-5 manual includes some very interesting settings.

Guitar Amps

Multitrack Digital Recorders

Handheld Recorders