So after much diddling 'round with my TS pedals, I think I have developed a good understanding of their several applications. Not every TS will be an all around one piece wonder, for too many variables come into play, so I figured I'd share some thoughts on what I use, or have tried, in hopes that it might give someone out there some ideas on what to do with theirs before flipping it for something else. Maxon for Ibanez TS-9 (Nine Series Tube Screamer). PCB has Maxon logo, Panasonic film caps, unmarked OPA, possibly a late 90s build. Got mine on a trade. @ 9 VDC it has that creamy mid smoothness. I found that it does well as a "voicing with some hair" boost for stacking or adding that liquid creamage to the amp's overdriven channel. I don't prefer it as a stand-alone unless using a good-output pickup, however, the Level only gets so hot so don't expect much boost, but the voice can't be beat imho. The lower frequencies are cut, so your tone doesn't get muddy or boomy, which makes for a nice "solo" or "percussive" tone. I have tried 12V, which is ok, but the added headroom removes the "girth" and "hair". I put mine before my Maxon SD-9 as a mid boost for soloing, and before my Maxon DS-830 for a similar effect. Maxon VOP-9 (Vintage Overdrive Pro). Got lucky, mine has a JRC4558D, not the newer repro; I ordered mine from Japan. This is very similar to the TS-9, except it has four additional features: a charge pump for 9V or 16V operation, more output gain, a clean boost feature, and a feedback loop for making the tone more linear. I prefer the 9V for stacking as the 16V option (via internal slider switch) spikes the treble somewhat unpleasantly. The VOP-9 can mimic the TS-9 pretty close, but the feedback loop gives it a different voice altogether from what you would expect in a TS. Still stacks very well and is much more aggressive for pushing an amp into shred territory. Unlike the TS-9, I can use this in lieu of a clean boost if needbe, so it serves double duty on that account, yet its tone does not color the overall tone much if any; this is preferable if you dial in your tone elsewhere. This fb loop provides the guitar pickup the impression of tighter tracking, and is a good pedal for "shredding" old-school style. I know Godlyke claims it to be a OD-820 in a Nine Series housing, but from my understanding it is not a Klone, only does it take the fb loop from the OD-820 circuit. Maxon OD-9 Pro+ (Overdrive Pro Plus), a newer product like the VOP-9, but designed for modern metal (think KSE). This pedal, I find, is good for running into an already overdriven amp. Loads of mids and hair with tons of gain. This pedal is not meant for use as a stand alone, it is intended to take your amp into brute territory. Like the VOP-9, there is a charge pump which offers 9 or 16V operation, but unlike the VOP-9 it has a mid-boost switch, which TRIPLES the volume in the mid freqs. I find it overkill, it would have been nice to just double it, but some rock-stars out there liked it so much Maxon produced them with it that way. Very percussive and liquid, tight palm-muting, and a sweet treble. The others, like the DS-830 and the SD-9, are not Tube Screamers, neither is the OD-820. I don't have the OD-9, which is the TS-9 with more gain on tap, but hear that it's nice also. Maxon does not produce a TS-9, they stopped making them for Ibanez in late 2001, so if you are a Maxon fan search the web for one used. To set up your gig with any of these pedals, the key is to first set up a base tone, which you will then stack upon. The TS cuts lower frequencies and gradually slopes off the high-pass beginning @ 100 Hz or so. Turning the Tone clockwise removes the Treble cut from the signal, making it brighter. Depending on your guitar and amp, you might find that switching between guitars, channels, pedals, and what not WILL require an adjustment of the Tone control, so experiment with this. Bear in mind the main benefit of a TS is not for gain if anything but rather for voicing, and the TS is particularly suited for solo work. Guitarists generally discover the advantage of the TS when they find their set-up rather "loose" or "boomy" or "muddy". One common complaint, or misconception, is that the Tone has a limited range. At first I fell into this predicament, but after tweaking my amps and changing guitars, found that on occasion the Tone nearly maxed out can get some pleasant "hair" depending on other variables. Take the OD-9Pro+, it was made for shredding. Once I modified the circuit on my TSL-100 I was able then to discover the sweet sizzle of that pedal with ceramic buckers, in fact I almost had flipped it! On the other hand if you are playing MFD "single-coils", stacking comes into the picture, and is why I suggested this at the very first. Doing this gets a low-output pickup to behave as a hotter pickup would. The TS-9 gives me the ability to get that crunchy rhythm and sweet singing lead. The trick here is to set up your other pedal, or amp, with less treble and more bass, the TS providing the cream and mids. At volume you might have more treble than desirable, so to avoid this, get a "big sound" at the lowest volume possible where your tube amp will pass a good sound, along with the TS engaged. I typically pull out some gain on both pedals and focus on obtaining that target tone in my head, then dial in the gain to taste once I turn up the amp. Other observations are that stacking two TS variants into one another is (1) unnecessary, and (2) not favorable (unless perhaps you want honky mids then go for it). I just don't find it very musical. I never, when stacking, have the gain higher than 1/5 on the TS. If I use the TS to push my overdriven amp, then I use either the VOP-9 or the OD-9Pro+, otherwise for that TS "mojo" the TS-9 is perfectly qualified. With that said, if you have not yet discovered the utility of a TS (or TS circuit), you will be surprised to see what the buzz is about. It is by no means an "end-all OD" pedal, but chances are you have heard it's voice on some favorite song of yours. I have other OD pedals which I will never part with, but this is my take on the TS. Perhaps Tube Saturator would be a good substitute name?