Homework * shootout of plexi pedals

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by 70s Rocker, Apr 20, 2015.

  1. 70s Rocker

    70s Rocker Overdriven Member Silver Supporting Member

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    So I'm about to pull the plug on a Dirty Little Secret or Carl Martin Plexitone or ???

    I found this Youtube. The demo does a plexi tone from 10 different pedals brands and shows the settings.

    After the first few, I shut my eyes and listened to the same Boston riff over and over but tried to evaluate each brand by sound alone.

    So here's the challenge. Take 9 minutes and listen to these - close your eyes until the singer sings "Take a look ahead" - then see what the pedal is.

    Close your eyes and repeat.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nvLX50eBXKw

    Post your 3 favorites - by sound alone! Which plexi pedals do you like the best - or sound best to your ears?

    I was surprised by my choices and probably saved myself a few hundred bucks. I'll post my choices later so as not to unduly influence the challenge.
     
  2. sanfi4u

    sanfi4u Silver Supporting Member

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    First off, nice track! :)
    I'm not ready to rate all the pedals. But I liked Bogner Blue and Wampler Pinnacle the most in this test.
    Note AMT SS-11 can sound way better with upgraded tubes and power supply.
    Ramble FX Marvel Drive, Wampler Plexi-Drive Deluxe, Menatone King of the Britains, Weehbo JCM Drive are powerful MIAB competitors and sadly missed in this video.
    All in all the test is fun. Thanks for posting.
     
  3. Garik Alengos

    Garik Alengos Member

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    as for me - Bogner Blue sounds the best on this video.

    ...and yeah, Boston track is really nice :dude
     
  4. Garik Alengos

    Garik Alengos Member

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    Yes. ...and the best way it sounds when it runs directly to the Power amp, 'cause it actualy is not a 'stomp box' - it's a Preamp.
     
  5. sanfi4u

    sanfi4u Silver Supporting Member

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    Exactly. After all the upgrades my SS-11A sounds really sweet right into the power amp.
     
  6. 70s Rocker

    70s Rocker Overdriven Member Silver Supporting Member

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  7. gearscrubs

    gearscrubs Supporting Member

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    I liked the Carl Martin and the Wampler pedals. The Bogner Blue sounded rather flat/lifeless to me.
     
  8. Kelsey

    Kelsey Member

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    They're all more alike than different. I doubt anyone could tell much difference live, maybe not much in a studio either.
     
  9. Rango

    Rango Supporting Member

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    I have the DLS III AND the Wampler Plexi Drive Deluxe. BOTH stay on my board all the time.

    Both are "Marshall in a BOX" but different enough that both are fun and useful. ;)
     
  10. 1973Marshall

    1973Marshall Member

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    Interesting video. I learned that all these pedals are pretty darn similar and I need to spend less time obsessing.
     
    ezra1 likes this.
  11. Garik Alengos

    Garik Alengos Member

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    if it was the Carl Martin big plexitone (with 3 buttons and booster) it would have been a winner :) IMO
     
  12. annostyle

    annostyle Member

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    The Bogner and both Wamplers sound the best to me.
     
  13. TheSpricket

    TheSpricket Member

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    Haha, just go with you gut and try one. If you love it buy it! You could go crazy looking at all of the plexi pedals out there. Next to the muff and tube screamer maybe one of the most common types of drive pedal these days. There are so many amazing ones and they all sound great to me!

    I've settled on the Plimsoul for myself. I've heard several that I like as much or even more, box of rock, bb preamp, Wampler plexi drive. But if you find one that works, grab it.
     
  14. dotlikeimpact

    dotlikeimpact Member

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    I've watched this video a ton. Did a blind test, with a friends help. Confirmed that the Zvex is for me (I've been using them for years).
     
  15. sixstring531

    sixstring531 Supporting Member

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    I am away from my desk this week (so no nice ear buds), but here are my tops:
    - Zvex
    - Boss PS
    - Pinnacle deluxe
    - Plexitone

    Playing the solo portions on single notes they almost all have the same qualities. I really try to listen for their note separation (compression/squishiness if you will) when you pound out the chords just after the solo. The four above seemed to stand out, at least to me.

    That being said, I've owned an Angry Charlie, Box of Rock, DLS Mk1 and Mk2 and big-box Plexitone. I currently have a Wampler Plexidrive (one you don't have here) and it works just fine. I'd love to give the Box of Rock a run again.

    Thanks for the cool demo!
     
  16. 70s Rocker

    70s Rocker Overdriven Member Silver Supporting Member

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    OK .... so it's just my ears here. And I don't have a dog in the hunt. I do own the Bogner Blue, but will need to go back and try it now.

    To me, and me only, the winner was the Wampler Pinnacle. (GAS on.)
    The second tier, but all good, was the Wampler Plextortion, ZVex, and Bogner.
    At the end, none of them sounded bad, but I'm trying to hear and envision which pedals could stay on the board, sound pleasing to the ear, and accomplish their mission.

    These were the contestants and MY ratings. We're all different.
    I agree with Garik on the big Carl Martin, but it's not included here.

    1. Bogner Ecstasy Blue – Smooth with a little hair – some good harmonics (4.5)
    2. AMT SS–11 Not as much saturation – a little better separation (4)
    3. ZVex Distortion – More focused. However, lost a few notes in chords letting some singles through (4.5)
    4. Carl Martin - A tad sterile compared to some – but good separation (maybe the big box would do it!) - sounded like it also had compression (4)
    5. JHS Angry Charlie – Good separation smooth sound (4) not as rich as some others.
    6. Wampler Plextortion – Good sustain, good sound (4.5)
    7. MI Audio Crunch Box – Good definition, warm sound – let a few notes dominate more so than others in held chords (4)
    8. Catalinbread Dirty Little Secret – A tad harsh to the others. Better on chords. (4)
    9. Boss Power Stack – Not up to the others. Good sound but more like a screamer. (3.5 – still surprising for a Boss)
    10. Blackstar HT-Dual – More plexi. Needed a little more overtone and treble, but not terribly muddy. Pleasing , but had some rough spots on held chords. (4)
    11. Wampler Pinnacle Deluxe – Good harmonics – nice chords – good saturation – great separation. (5) IMO – the winner of the 11 (as subjectively set)
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2015
  17. tenchijin2

    tenchijin2 Member

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    I was a little disappointed that the Radial Tonebone Hot British wasn't in there. Otherwise they were all VERY similar, with some being darker and some being a bit more aggressive but all having a similar generic "Marshall-esque" sound.
     
  18. ed2brute

    ed2brute Supporting Member

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    I went through the same exercise and ended up with a Carl Martin Plexitone (small/gold box). Just something about the harmonics in the distortion in the way it reacted to my playing dynamics did it for me. But I could be happy as a clam playing anyone of those pedals.

    The Carl Martin is on the bright side, so when most people try it out the box and set the tone at noon they're turned off by how sharp it is. I know I was! Rolling the pedal's tone knob back (way back) brings in a really nice character.
     
  19. vbf

    vbf Supporting Member

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    What a great video. They all sound very similar....I think I'm gonna stop obsessing too. Well, maybe just a little. :)
     
  20. Uncle Waldo

    Uncle Waldo Member

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    So... a year late to the party, but if you don't mind my 2ยข...

    Sound-wise, I love the Bogner. The Bogner is a $299 pedal... The Boss Power Stack is a $99 pedal. Does the Bogner sound $200 better? ...Nope.

    I got the Boss on my board.
     

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