John Kav Audio Executive Overdrive Pedal Review

John Kav Audio Executive Overdrive Pedal Review

It’s not often I get to test something new that doesn’t sound like something old.  There are of course quite a number of examples on this website of pedals that go in a different direction but it’s always great and refreshing to play and test something that sounds quite a bit different to anything I have tried till now.  The John Kav Audio hits the nail on the head quality and tone wise.

The Pedal Layout

Let’s start by checking out the layout and features of the John Kav Audio Executive Pedal.  I love this pedals simplicity.  There’s three main pots on the top including Drive, Tone, and Volume control as well as a switch on the front which you can select either “More” or “Less”.  When the pedal is switched to the More setting you’re getting more gain, more presence, and more oomph.  With the pedal switched to less everything gets smoother and more “vintage” sounding in my opinion.

How does the John Kav Audio Executive Overdrive Sound?

If you’re a fan of anything from a jangly Stratocaster tone through to stinging or smooth lead solos you’re going to enjoy this pedal.  You can use this pedal from anything from blues to classic rock in my opinion and will do the off-clean transparent overdrive tones without any problems at all.  You can set this pedal up for a number of different situations including an always on, off clean tone that you can stack other pedals onto.  You can also use it for a smooth or attitude filled lead tone depending on which setting you have the switch to on the front.  If you’re a fan of smooth blues tones you’ll probably live on the Less setting.  If you want something that get’s a little nasty in a good way you’ll probably dig the More setting.  To my ear there’s not a a bump in the mids like a Tubescreamer.  The Executive Overdrive is a bit more neutral sounding and would sound great stacked.  I did notice a little bit of low end cut from my signal when I engaged the pedal so it does color your sound a little bit but it does this in a way that sounds good.  For me being a blues player, I’d set up the gain at about 1pm with the toggle switch to the Less setting and just use my guitar’s volume control down to get the rhythm tones and up to get my lead tones.  The voicing of this pedal also lends itself to being used as a boost after another overdrive as well as before.

Check out the demo of the Executive Overdrive Here

Power Options

Another great feature of the John Kav Audio Executive overdrive pedal is the fact you can run it on either 9 or 18v.  For those who don’t know running a pedal that has the option of 18v will give the pedal more clarity and headroom.  It sounds great on 9v which is how I used it in the demo video above.


John Kav Audio pedals are made in Melbourne, Australia and are built like tanks.  John uses quality parts and switches and hand drills the enclosures and everything right here in Australia.


8.5 Stars (8.5 / 10) I am giving the John Kav Audio Executive Overdrive pedal an 8/10.  What this pedals does extremely well is the off-clean tones with the More switch on.  If you play a Stratocaster or Telecaster and love the off-clean jangly rhythm tones then you’re going to love this pedal.  This pedal really shines on a clean tone of a Fender amplifier for example but also try it on a dirty channel and see how it goes.  There’s a small drop in the low end of your guitar tone which won’t concern most people who are familiar with overdrive pedals.  This is a very common approach to making pedals that stay clean and clear without getting flabby on the lows.  Overall, this is a great pedal and I can highly recommend it if you’re into pedals that are distinctive and full of good tones.