Strymon Iridium Review (Amp & Cab Sim Pedal)


Check Prices on Sweetwater

I often play guitar in the evening, in my office with my Mesa Recto-Verb combo amp. However, I have four kids who are usually asleep and my wife likes to watch TV in the evening without a ton of noise. All of this is to be expected. While I’ve tried software-based amp models, they just don’t sound as good as the Mesa, especially on higher gain levels.

The Strymon Iridium preamp and cab simulator
  • Versatility (modern/vintage): 95
  • EQ Comprehension: 82
  • Noise Levels: 100
  • Additional Filtering: 85
  • Wiring: 90
  • Build Quality: 95
  • Brand Reputation: 100
  • Cost: 78

Strymon Iridium Review: Compare to Similar Products

Strymon Iridium: 9​2.9

  • Amp Models
  • Cab Models
  • Room and gain control
  • Headphone out

Check Price on Sweetwater

JHS Clover

  • Three-band EQ
  • Works for bass and acoustic as well
  • Filter controls
  • Balanced XLR out

Check Price on Sweetwater

Aguilar Tone Hammer

  • Sweepable mids
  • Balanced XLR out
  • Unbalanced out for power amp

Check Price on Sweetwater

EarthQuaker Devices Arrows

  • Single level preamp control
  • Completely analog

Check Price on Sweetwater​​​​

Tone Quality

The Iridium’s value is largely related to functionality, but the sound is astoundingly good. It’s one of the only preamp pedals I’ve tried that actually sounded like a real amp and didn’t remind me that I was just using a pedal. Clean tones, in particular, sound really smooth and well-defined, like you’d expect from a tube amp.

Tone Highlights and Descriptors

  • Warm, full clean tone
  • Wide range of gain levels between amp models
  • Subtle breakup sounds like a Fender tube amp
  • As close to a real amp tone quality we’ve ever heard without an actual amp


A closer look at the Iridium control scheme.

Control Highlights

  • Three base amp models
  • Three cabs for each amp model
  • Room control (natural ambience)
  • Three-band EQ

Price and Value of the Strymon Iridium

On Sweetwater, the Strymon Iridium is set at nearly $400 retail, which is fairly high for a pedal preamp.

The Strymon Iridium hovers around $400 retail. Not cheap.

When would it be a good fit?

If you’re gigging or recording, and you don’t want to (or can’t) lug an amplifier around with you, the Strymon Iridium can literally replace the entire thing.


With the possible exception of the BigSky, the Iridium has impressed me more than any other Strymon stompbox. Getting that kind of tone quality out of a pedal is a big deal, even in the $400 price range.


Got questions about our Strymon Iridium review? If so, feel free to leave them in the comments section below. I’ll answer there and help out as much as possible.



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