Black Cat Pedals Tour Box #2

mrscott99

Member
Messages
420
Tour Box #2 is now Complete and closed, thank you all for participating and remember to contact Tom at Black Cat for special pricing for a one time buy



insubordination - Completed
seiko - Completed

Agramal - Completed
DonaldDemon - Completed
SIX STRING ZOMBIE - completed

Jrigg - Completed
FuzzFaceJ - Completed
IOWA - Completed
Ifailedshapes - Completed
70's Hard Rock -Completed
misc1600 - Completed
ungarn - Completed

* Each participant agrees to keep the pedals for a period of no longer than 5 business days.
* Each participant agrees to ship the pedals at his own expense to the next person on the list (the name and address of the next person on the list will be provided to the individual participants).
* The method of shipment will be UPS, FedEx, or USPS Priority Mail with delivery confirmation. When the pedal is shipped, at the end of the 5 day trial period, the participant agrees to forward tracking info to both myself and the next recipient of the Tour Box.
* Finally, I have to ask, PLEASE... if you don't think you'll be able to follow the above guidelines, please do not sign up for the Tour Box. These guidelines help ensure the safest, most trouble-free and enjoyable experience for everyone involved.
 
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1,000
I have received confirmation from my girlfriend that the tourbox has been delivered. Will post a family photo tonight. :band
 
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1,000
Voila:



Nice full color instruction manuals, printed bags, stickers, and of course beautiful enclosures. Looking forward to getting to play these a lot these next few days!
 
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1,000
Well, I shot a video, but my camera and computer aren't talking to each other apparently, so, I went with some Soundcloud clips instead.

Three audio clips for tonight, with reviews to follow tomorrow morning. Three super cool pedals, and I was stoked to be involved in this!

Gear used:
Guild Bluesbird into JamUp XT interface into iPad, using AC30 amp model, and Tube Screamer on low gain.

https://soundcloud.com/gear-fatigue/sets/black-cat-pedals-tourbox-2

Clip 1: Deluxe Mona Wah, buffered setting, starting with Q and Freq knobs at noon, switching through three positions and turning Q and Freq knobs.

[SOUNDCLOUD]https://soundcloud.com/gear-fatigue/black-cat-tourbox-1-deluxe?in=gear-fatigue/sets/black-cat-pedals-tourbox-2[/SOUNDCLOUD]

Clip 2: Deluxe Mona Wah, true bypass setting, all knobs maxed. OD-Boost engaged sporadically (either OD or Boost). Some real shoddy playing on this one.

[SOUNDCLOUD]https://soundcloud.com/gear-fatigue/black-cat-tourbox-2-deluxe?in=gear-fatigue/sets/black-cat-pedals-tourbox-2[/SOUNDCLOUD]

Clip 3: Mini-Trem, starting with speed at max, all other knobs at noon, alternating speeds using the Speed footswitch. Knob sweeps from min to max going clockwise (and switching Speeds again): Depth, Boost, then Tone, then near 1:00 while the Speed knob is turned from min to max, ending with Speed, Depth and Boost at 3:00 and Tone at 9:00.

[SOUNDCLOUD]https://soundcloud.com/gear-fatigue/black-cat-tourbox-3-mini-trem?in=gear-fatigue/sets/black-cat-pedals-tourbox-2[/SOUNDCLOUD]
 
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1,000
OK so, reviews!

First off, I chose tourbox #2 because these are three pedals I have *almost* bought already, so this was the perfect time to try all three (even though I really wanted to try the Wee-Baa...another time). Fortunately, I've owned the Black Cat Vibe, and played the Bass Octave Fuzz, so I knew the quality of Black Cat Pedals to be high, and was not disappointed with these three in tourbox #2.

Deluxe Mona Wah: This pedal is awesome! The only other wah I had a favorable experience with before was the Wilson 12 position Rippah Boostah wah, and the Mona diverges from that in a number of ways. It's not as tweakable, but I see that as a good thing, because I don't like to sit and agonize over what the *perfect* algorithm or EQ curve in a given pedal is for me. That's not to say the Mona is not tweakable, because it absolutely is.

The different between true bypass and buffered wasn't huge for me, but I could hear a little more presence with the buffer switch engaged. The three-position switch has a much bigger impact on the sound of the wah, and there are usable tones to be had in each position. Tom at Black Cat was nice enough to email me some helpful hints with finding some more pedal steel-type swell tones, which is a really cool feature I hadn't explored or heard in a wah. I spent most of my playtime with the knobs all maxed, though dialing back the Freq and Q knobs can help add some more subtle textures (hopefully evident in my first clip). I never felt the need to dial back the volume, which seemed to be unity at max, so, maybe a little less volume is usable to someone? But if I were to buy this pedal or recommend it to someone else, I'd definitely say they should get the Deluxe, just to have the knobs on the outside for faster adjustment.

Mini-Trem: I passed up one of these pretty recently, and...I think I made a mistake, because this is a suuuuuper cool tremolo. It's been out awhile and there are some cool demos of this one out there, so hopefully people know what they are getting into. The footswitchable speeds is an excellent feature, and the Boost knob helps correct any volume drop/regulate the level quite well. It also gives you a nice clean boost with the Depth at minimum, but why would you do that when you have such a great trem to work with? Plus, every tremolo should have a tone knob! Small, single pedal form factor, gold sparkle paint, highly versatile...yep, this one's a winner!

OD-Boost: So full disclosure here, I only got to test these pedals in my music room on a five-watt single EL84 amp head, and then into an iPad. The OD-Boost was not meant for this application. I have owned a lot of dirt pedals (dozens) and by now I can tell which ones are meant to be played loud. This is one of them. Don't get me wrong, it sounds cool at low volumes, the clean boost is great, but the OD side? Yeah, that needs to be loud. And there is plenty of volume available, especially when running the OD into the Boost at full tilt. I definitely appreciate the switchable order, that is a feature that more dual pedals should implement! This pedal sounded surprisingly good direct into the iPad (with an amp sim, but still, I was pleased), but I think it would benefit most going into a just breaking up or already cooking big bottle tube amp. Still, glad I got to check it out!

Thank you so much to Tom for allowing this to take place, and Scott for facilitating. Enjoy!
 

seiko

Member
Messages
3,971
Pedals are on their way to Agramal. First take: The OD-Boost is a stellar pedal. Really surprising how much can be had with 3 knobs and a toggle.

More later....
 

Agramal

Member
Messages
1,194
Just got the pedals tonight! Should put them through their paces Saturday. Gotta say, the pedals look stunning! :drool
 

Agramal

Member
Messages
1,194
So some initial impressions.

The OD-Boost is surprisingly great. At first I was disappointed by the lack of tone controls, but with the drive (gain) dimed I was really pleased. This puppy is loud as hell, and with the clean boost engaged it's a real delight. This pedal has a lot of practical applications and really would work well in a gigging environment - with one caveat. While I appreciate the pedal's small footprint, the switches are very close together, so in the heat of the moment I woudl worry a little about engaging/disengaging both.

So far I've experimented with the OD-Boost into my Fender Twin, which sounded great. Tomorrow I hope to crank it through my '74 Fender Bassman 50 head and Marshall 4x12 to see what it can do.

I really like the Mini Trem, and will do a full write-up on it. I can see that this trem would not be everyone's cup of tea. It is not subtle. In fact, it has a dramatic presence even with the depth just at noon. This has its pros and cons. One thing I really like is the boost and the tone control, which primarily acts as either a treble or bass boost. On my board now is a Catalinbread Pareidolia, and I was a longtime user of a Boss TR-2, and the Mini Trem really has its own thing going. I don't think it would kick my Catalinbread off the board but it's a different animal...less subtle, far more open to tweaking. And and the Speed switch is really great, letting you go back and forth between a hard, fast choppy trem to a slow, swampy throb. Very cool.

The Deluxe Mona Wah is...wow. Need to spend more time with it to do it justice. But it's a tweaker's dream, for sure. For a guy that's had a standard Crybaby and a Vox, this wah is an eye-opener. One quibble is that all the knobs and mini-toggles are unlabeled, but that's not the end of the world. I think my favorite of the three "modes" is the one that riffs on the Tycobrahe Parapedal. Sounds great with OD-Boost on max gain. I'm not crazy about the way the pedal's throw feels though, that's probably my only beef with it. More tomorrow when I hopefully get to really crank these three through the half-stack!
 

DonaldDemon

Member
Messages
9,307
Agramal was nice enough to drop these off in person last weekend. I was going to do a write up but honestly, it would pretty much mimic his posts. I liked the wah the best though admittedly I haven't had much time to spend with them. On to the next...
 

Noise Under The Floor

A happy-go-lucky chap, always dressed in black.
Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
11,626
Received today....my birthday! Nice surprise. Put them through their paces for about an hour just now.

First off, the paint jobs on these pedals are killer. Very nice!

The trem is definitely my favorite of the 3. I really like having the boost and tone controls. Solves what seems to be a common problem for a lot of trems. Also, the separate speed toggle is awesome as well. I had a Diaz Tremedillo back in the day, and that was a great function....nice to see it here.

The wah....I really only enjoyed one setting (the regular Mona wah). Personally, I just prefer a simple stomp and go wah with one good tone and don't get into fiddling with much else. That said, I can see where those functions are useful for different guitars and amps. It took me a while to actually notice the little switches under the treadle, then I had to spend time tweaking it all in to my liking. Which ended up being the stock Mona setting with everything cranked. Again, all personal preference. Its an EXTREMELY impressively built wah. Have a look at the internals when you get it...impressive.

OD/Boost. - not a pedal I found particularly useful for my purposes, but again, its personal preference. I already use guitars with hot pickups and ride my volume knob along with an amp that has a ton of gain (Mesa F series) Overkill on my dirty channel, but yielded a nice fuzztone on the clean side. I can see where this pedal would be nice with single coils or vintage output 'buckers. My rig didn't really match up with it well. No fault of the pedal itself though. Again, personal taste and preference.

I'll be using these a bit more over the weekend, maybe recording some clips. Will be sent on to the next on Monday, Tues at the latest.

:wave
 




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