Using The Volume Pedal When Practicing Guitar

The volume pedal is an effective tool for a live scenario but not many people know that this pedal can be used to turn down the volume of your amp without loosing any gain. I have recently learned this trick from Phillip McKnight’s Youtube channel. I tried it for myself and found it really useful.

The so called secret to this trick is by putting the volume pedal in the effects loop. If you don’t know what an effects loop is you can read my simple effects loop explanation article here. By putting the pedal in the effects loop, the volume function comes after all the dirt and not in front of the amp. If you put the pedal in front of the amp, essentially you are turning down the gain. This is not cool and is the complete opposite of what we are trying to achieve. if you want to practice guitar, at night with a high gain sound, put the volume pedal in the effects loop.

The volume pedal allows you to adjust the volume to the suit your level and you can practice high gain leads or riffs etc at night or whenever you want. I would say one thing, I’d never really use this for a clean sound. I feel the volume on the amp is adequate for practicing for a clean sound but thats just my personal opinion. I think this technique is best suited for a cranked or dirty tube amp. It still works on solid state amps but I recommend rather getting a proper practice amp instead.

Just a friendly warning, don’t expect this to work if your amp has a parallel effects loop as explain in my article.

Top Volume Pedals

  • Boss FV500H 


  • Ernie Ball VP 


You can watch the volume pedal technique by Philip below: