I tried to use my distortion effects pedal through the guitar input of my combo amp, and I get no sound!

I used it in effects loop and worked fine and amp works fine when guitar is plugged straight in too. Anyone know what the problem may be or any ideas?

1 Answer 1


You need to work through each component and connection to check it's working. I suggest working backwards through the chain, starting at the amp, and following the chain to the guitar.

  • Does the amp work at all? (you've proved this by plugging the guitar straight in)
  • Do all the leads work? (try all of them, guitar direct to amp)
  • Does the pedal output work? (plug it into the amp; since it's a distortion pedal, you should at least hear some noise if you crank it up. Some pedals can produce a signal without input, for example with a test button, or with the metronome built into some multi-FX pedals)
  • Does the pedal input work? (plug something you know works into it)
  • Does the guitar work? (you've proved this by playing it direct through the amp)

During this testing, check the volume controls on the component you're testing.

Work through these methodically, and you will find the problem.

  • The distortion pedal worked through the effects loop so I know the pedal is fine but, I would rather have pedal before amp as going through the effects loop may have a different tone. I'll be able to try and figure it out again Thursday and hopefully it's something simple why that happened going straight into guitar/amp input. Thx for your help
    – Jeff Brady
    Commented Apr 9, 2013 at 16:49

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