TC Electronic Spark Boost Mini Pedal

Clean boost, simple and effective   11-Jul-13

    MP4 9:9 mins    

The TC Electronic Spark Mini is housed in TC's now famous micro pedal unit, the same size casing as the Polytune Mini and their Ditto Looper.

We had the TC Electronic Spark Mini in for review, and it was quite honestly one of the simplest pedals we have ever reviewed. It's a tiny, lightweight, easy-to-use boost pedal with one stomp switch, and one knob.

The original full-size Spark booster offers +26dB of boost, has three different boost modes - fat, clean and mid, and has four knobs - gain, level, bass and treble.

The first thing we noticed when unboxed the TC Electronic Spark Mini boost for review, and plugged it into our in-house rig, is it still has the same tonal signature as its big brother.

Giving it about +10dB of boost will provide a fairly even boost across all frequencies, without flavouring the tone of your amp. The TC Electronic Spark Mini is quite neutral sonically, if you just want your amp to go 'louder' at the click of a stomp switch, then it's a good purchase.

It seems to push the mids and the low range very slightly more than it pushes the high end, and this brings out a bassy warmth when used, as well as giving you more mid-range to cut through the mix for a solo.

But obviously this will be slightly different depending on which amp it's going through, what's clear though is that the TC Electronic Spark Mini boost will probably pair well with almost any amplifier out there.

Prior to our review, we tested it through an Egnater Rebel 20, a Gibson BR9, and a Vox Bruno, and it had a strikingly similar effect on all of the amps, not adding too much of its own flavour to any of the amps, but boosting frequencies and adding spark (ahem) in all the right places.

If you are looking for an affordable boost pedal, which isn't going to add too much colour to your already great-sounding amp tone, but has a whopping +20dB of boost and fits on even the smallest of pedal boards, then this is it.

It's great for launching into solos, but also works well if you just want to push your clean tone on a tube amp until it breaks up and gives you a bluesy crunch.

If you want tonal flexibility on your boost pedal, then TC Electronic Spark Mini is probably not for you, but let's face it, most people who want tonal flexibility and gain in a pedal will probably go for an overdrive pedal.

It's top marks from us, great little pedal, reliable, and has a tiny little footprint, small enough to fit two on your board perhaps - one at the start of the chain, one at the end...

Prime Time Footswitch: At the time of this review, we didn't have the manual so were unaware of the neat Prime Time feature  - this autosenses the timing of footpedal presses and decides whether to be a momentary footswitch - ie: active for as long as you hold down the pedal, or a latching one - one press on, one press off.
Spark Mini automactically decides for you  - a quick tap and it will be on, or hold down the pedal for more than a second and it becomes momentary - ideal for boosting a quick phrase or lick without the need to tap dance.

Spark Mini Boost is available in stores shortly priced: $99 / €79 / £69

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