Thorpy “Heavy Water” Pedal Review – I changed my mind. Was I correct?


For a while now, I wanted the Thorpy Dane, however, upon getting my RD Custom Amplifier I found I wasn’t after more gain, I was after pushing my amp and controlling it with the volume on my guitar. For me to do this I needed a boost! So I turned to the Thorpy Heavy Water. Being that it is the boost side of the Dane (and then some) I thought this would be perfect!

Why did I want a boost? Well, after speaking with Aynsley Liester I wanted to try the one pedal and control the gain with the volume. I can tell you, it’s amazing! However, for this to work I needed a good boost to boost my guitar signal into the amp to get some lovely saturation, and to keep the volume high when rolling the volume down to clean up. The Thorpy Heavy Water seemed perfect for this! Plus with the option of the dual boost, I was very confident that I was going to be able to get the sound I would be after.

Plus I have been meaning to try out a Thorpy pedal for a while now, So let’s go over the pedal, then talk about my thoughts on it!

Thorpy Heavy Water Pedal

Thorpy Heavy Water - Full View
The full view of the Thorpy Heavy water, Showing the build, and controls!

The Thorpy Heavy water boost pedal is kind of the child of “The Dane” they made. It is the boost side of “The Dane” put into its own housing! To use as a solo boost or to drive the front end of your amp more! However, this pedal also has another side, another switch you can press! A second boost. The second boost is a “more gain” boost side with the help of a Germanium diode. Giving you volume and a bit of extra grit. These two boosts go into one another, giving you a wide range of boost and saturation options!

The pedal comes in a nice compact box with nice branding and prints on it. Inside the box is the pedal, which comes in a plastic bag. A few stickers, a Card and a guitar pick (got to love a guitar pick). The pedal doesn’t come with instructions, to get those you have to scan the QR code on the front of the box.

More on the Thorpy Heavy Water Pedal

The pedal has 4 controls (2 for each boost side) the top two knobs are Volume/boost. Control the output signal of the pedal. The bottom two knobs are to control the Lows. Allowing you to cut or increase the low end of your signal. The pedal has top-loaded inputs and outputs and also the 9v power input is on the top.

As with all the Thorpy pedals they are made in the UK (Very close to my house). They are all full metal enclosures with full engravings. The Thorpy Heavy Water is a lovely Blue Colour on the side and nice shiny metal in the middle. As with all Thorpy pedals, they are True Bypass and the Heavy Water isn’t any different! A custom shop version is available through the Thorpy website. What this version does is allows “remote switching” of each channel. So if you had a switching system you can hook each boost side up to a different switch.

The Sounds

For the sounds, we put together a very 80’s inspiring demo track. We didn’t want to do another blues track like the other Heavy Water demo’s out there. Wanted to show you another way to use this pedal. For all the guitars in the demo track, the pedal was on (either the left or right side), and for the solo both sides of the Heavy Water boost were active.

After the demo song we then run through the sounds you can get from this pedal. Using both a Gibson Les Paul and my LT Custom S-type guitar (Humbucker and Single Coil sounds).

What are my thoughts?

Thorpy Heavy Water - Controls
Four controls, Two sides, easy to use and to get the sounds you want from it!

The look and size of this pedal are nothing but stellar! It was a lot smaller than I thought it was going to be! The design and build quality of the Heavy Water is superb! You can tell that this pedal will hold up to touring and some abuse! The knobs have a lovely resistance to them and are easy to move but won’t change or move around in when in transport!

Sounds wise, this pedal is unbelievable! If you have an amp you like the sound of, this pedal will just give you more of it! The two sides of the pedal give you a huge variety of gain and boost options. Plugging this pedal into my amps gave me my amps sound but just more of it. Allowing me to push the front end and then control the gain with the volume of the guitar! Using a combination of the two sides of the boost really gives you a variety of tones and “gain” options!

Few More Thoughts

The low control really adds depth and bottom end to your sound, ideal if you find your single coil sound too thin! Nevertheless, you do have to be careful with Humbuckers so as to not cause the low end to flab out! Honestly, Playing this pedal with single coils and having that low-end control really fattens up your tone! Give you a meaty and punchy gain sound! Something I struggle with single coils!

A very small note, I love the fact they don’t put the instructions in the box and you can scan the code to get them. Most people won’t read instructions, so it will conserve a load of paper not having to print instructions no one will read. However, if you do want them, you can find them on Thorpy’s website or scan the code on the box A very nice, Eco-Friendly idea!

Thorpy Heavy Water - Front View
Lovely looking pedal! Thorpy have very unique pedal designs!

Final Thoughts

Now, I’m not going to lie, and I’m going to be fully honest, It is an expensive pedal! They retail for around £206. Which for a boost pedal is fairly expensive! This isn’t a pedal you buy on a whim. This is a professional pedal aimed at gigging and touring musicians (not saying you can’t just use it in your bedroom). 

Of course, you can see where the money goes by looking at the build quality and the fact it’s all metal production this is all top-notch! However, on the note of where the money goes, One of the first things I noticed when unblocking the Thorpy Heavy Water, is the pedal doesn’t come in a nice bag! For the price, I would have anticipated it to come in a carry bag (like the Hudson Broadcast did), not a cheap plastic bag. Not a huge issue, but something I picked up on almost immediately!


So that was our review of the Thorpy Heavy Water boost pedal! Are there any other Thorpy Reviews you want to see? Any of their other pedal line up you want us to put through our review process? They have a wide selection of pedals to try out!

If you are wondering what this sounds like compared to the dane, then look no further as we have put out a full review of the Thorpy FX “The Dane” MKII pedal. You can check that out over here! See what you think!

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