Catalinbread Valcoder (2015 Version)

lux_interior

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5,376
The new version has two extra knobs, Input & Output, besides the Depth & Rate (Speed) that the old one had. I think the new one has an extra preamp tube-like stage that's supposed to make it a bit dirty and more "alive"-vintage sounding (I love that CBread design principle), and I also have the impression the old one is more square-wave oriented whereas the new can be more subtle. The Harmonic Mesmeriser is a recreation of a very special and rather unique tremolo phase-y univibe-y vibrato of the brownface Fenders, so they will sound different.

The Fulltone is of course a very good pedal, but I'm not sure I would dedicate that pedalboard real-estate, and these CBread pedals seem more interesting to me (plus I don't think it can give the sound of the Harm. Mesmeriser).
 

Blunder

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1,225
You won't get too many opinions on the new Valcoder yet. It's being released in early April. It has the same sonic goal of the original, but it is a completely different circuit design. The input control allows you to drive the tremolo circuit to get a dirty tremolo. You can back that off to get a cleaner trem. It will also function as a dirty boost with the depth control off.
The Valcoder is a bias vary style tremolo. The Pareidolia is based off the brownface harmonic Vibrato.
 
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11,596
My Supa-Trem never did the full out stutter my Valcoder does. But the Valcoder definitely isn't for everyone. I'll probably check out the Anticthon when it comes out.
 

McQ7

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397
From the way Howard set it up at about 4:12 in the video, it appears that with the depth at minimum and input cranked, it's possible to get some breakup without any tremolo. Not as a boost (I assume output would control that), but just as a Valco style overdrive option. Not a huge amount of gain but enough to do what, in my opinion, the Valco amps do very well. Am I evaluating that correctly?
 

erksin

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23,125
From the way Howard set it up at about 4:12 in the video, it appears that with the depth at minimum and input cranked, it's possible to get some breakup without any tremolo. Not as a boost (I assume output would control that), but just as a Valco style overdrive option. Not a huge amount of gain but enough to do what, in my opinion, the Valco amps do very well. Am I evaluating that correctly?

:aok
 

Blunder

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1,225
From the way Howard set it up at about 4:12 in the video, it appears that with the depth at minimum and input cranked, it's possible to get some breakup without any tremolo. Not as a boost (I assume output would control that), but just as a Valco style overdrive option. Not a huge amount of gain but enough to do what, in my opinion, the Valco amps do very well. Am I evaluating that correctly?

Correct. I wanted this this to behave like an amp with tremolo, not just be another tremolo pedal. Turn the depth off and you have a gritty Valco style overdrive. I used my old 1948 Supreme as the inspiration when designing this part of the circuit. I love the way that amp sounds when you crank it up.
 

McQ7

Member
Messages
397
Oh man, that's awesome. I had a mid 50s Supro Comet with the 6SL7 preamp tube and it was amazing. Catalinbread: I love the thoughts you all think and the things that you do. You all get the details so right.
 

Udonitron

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36
Now delayed due to Supro having a fit over them using the lighting bolt on the pedal. :Spank
They are now redesigning the logo....dammit it all.
 

roquero

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1,505
Mine should be here tomorrow- a few got released into the wild before Supro threw a fit! :aok
 

McQ7

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Messages
397
For more details go to their Facebook post about it.
Supro apparently has trademarked the number of points in the lightning bolt. According to Brad Fee of Mojo Hand FX, Supro saw their new Superlative prototype at NAMM and asked them to change it. Not sure how Supro could have missed the Valcoder at NAMM, but according to Catalinbread it's not a hostile thing and out of respect for the trademark owner(s) they've halted production for a redesign of the pedal's graphics.

My personal opinion is that:
1) these pedals only serve to increase the attractiveness of the Supro brand and new amps;
2) the Catalinbread bolt appears to be different in angle/trajectory than the Supro bolt which is enough of a distinction for me, the consumer, to distinguish between the two;
3) a trademark on the number of points on a lightning bolt is a silly thing.

I do think that it's good for trademarks in general to be enforced for the sake of those that aren't silly.
 

Cderosa1185

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82
Mine should be arriving this afternoon. I better hide it, I don't want to have those supro reps show up at my door!
 

Cgkindler

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6,245
If I had the cash to get one, just to say it was "pre-redesign" I'd grab it for the sake of being able to say that. lol
 

roquero

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Gold Supporting Member
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1,505
I am really loving the preamp on the new Valcoder, especially at 18 volts. It reminds me of my Lumpy's Jelly Roll.

It provides some excellent overdrive with great picking dynamics with the input and output knobs boosted.

I find that I generally like to keep the Speed and Depths knobs below noon- anything beyond that starts to get extreme.

Well done, Catalinbread Crew! :dude
 
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3
I've come from the future, 6 years later to be exact, to say I was able to procure an original "pre-redesign" bolt Valcoder brand new old stock from Sam Ash $99.77 on closeout. Honestly I didn't even know it was going to be the 2015 version since it was sold as new but there it was, three bolted design in all its glory and the innards proclaiming 2015. Besides that, this pedal has exceeded all my expectations. The trem is nice and strong and the overdrive is just glorious. Agreed with @roquero on the picking dynamics and just really cuts through nicely. Absolutely love it, especially at 18V. Only negative I have to share from the future is that there's a pandemic and it never ever ends so be prepared to play all your pedals at home via bedroom volume for the remainder of your days.
 




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