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Kingsley Amps: Do The Math

StevenA

Senior Member
Messages
3,976
Still trying to get a handle on my Deluxe 32C with Ch.1 cascading into Ch.2
Pentode switch, Triode switch, Ch. 1 and 2 Brite switches, 3 preamp gain stages, EQ lift switch, Ch.1 Boost, Ch.2 Boost, I calculate, and it's been a while since I took algebra:

312 separate settings to choose from

Correct me if I'm wrong.

SA
 

rrhea

Member
Messages
739
I don't really do math that well, but I can tell you this. My Kingsley amp is like 312 little sonic orgasms that pleasure my ears each time I play it. It ought to be illegal. :)

RR
 

Steve Snider

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
6,399
The Tonebaron, which is getting tons of play in my world ,is beyond belief. AMAZING amp. I would rank it in the top 5 of amps I have played. Maybe top 3.That includes Dumbles, Trainwrecks, and all the boutiques you could imagine.
 

bluessyndicate

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,528
Although the amp has many useful features and great tonal flexibility, it is quite simple to use. While the possibility exists to custom tailor the rig for different sounds, by adjusting a few knobs or switches, for most once set, you're done and it's a touch sensitive two channel amp that is responsive to guitar volume.

Pentode/Triode: Both modes are useful. I am leaning towards Pentode lately due to the "Bollack" factor. One could use triode mode for volume reduction or to achieve a creamier gain sound.

Full/Half Power: The amps channel masters work great. I typically use 1/2 power at home and full power at gigs...but one could leave it in full power mode permanently.

Bright Switches:
At medium to higher volumes I find them useful in compensating for whether I am plugging in my strat or my les paul. The paul benefits from the bright switch.

Global EQ:
The global EQ can be used in a similar fashion to account for the room or the axe. So, at low volumes I'll just use global eq, and at med to high volumes I'll use global eq for "the room", and add bright switch for my les paul. This control is very useful for tailoring the amp to the room without chaning your overall EQ settings for the two channels...i.e. it's a master EQ.

Gain Channel:
I run the 3 way gain switch in either the low or high mode. The high end bite I get in the high setting is amazing and addictive, and I typically run there. With a les paul the high setting is phenomenal! In the high gain switch setting I set gain knob at about 2 o'clock. In the low gain switch setting I set the gain knob to full, then use the foot pedal to kick in the boost as needed for girth and volume....You have two approaches here depending on if you are a pedal guy or a "ride the volume knob" guy...lately I'm trying to be the latter. I also have the EQ Lift foot switchable on my gain channel, and that makes for a fairly transparent simple volume boost...so on the gain channel the boost is for girth/volume and the eq lift is for volume without added girth.

Clean Channel:
Often I run the 3 way gain switch in low, going for the chimey cleans, and kick in the boost for hair. Other times I'll enhance this by using the EQ Lift which boosts the channel already and gives it some hair..in this case I'll roll back for the chimey pristine cleans, or use the pedal boost to launch into damn near full on crunch mode. This channel can essentially allow you to go from pristine cleans to a pretty crunchy sound if desired...so with my strat I can really work this channel...using the neck pickup to clean things up or hitting my bridge humbucker to transform the clean channel for gain rhythms...this is why I'll choose to run the gain channel with the 3 way gain switch in high mode for searing leads, because I can get the clean channel to crunch up depending on whether I have the pedal boost engaged and depending on which pickup I am using.

Summary:
For a blues or jazz type gig I could essentially do the entire gig using the clean channel with gain switch at low, EQ Lifted, and working my volume knob and the boost pedal. This is a very simple one channel approach requiring me to simply flip two switches and play. If the gig requires it, the gain channel is available via footswitch for over the top gary moore styled searing leads...

For rock gigs the the amp's flexibility will allow different approaches allowing either channel to operate either clean or dirty.

This is all with a celestion gold in an oversized 1x12.

I have not experimented with tube changes at all as of yet.

Mine is not a D32C, rather a D32R with dual independent reverb.
 
Last edited:

stratovarius

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
9,018
Flexibility isn't something I need. Actually, if I have to do a lot of "programming" to get an amp where I want it to be, then it isn't the one for me. The amps I love the most are always stone cold simple. If there are too many knobs and switches, I figure the amp doesn't really have an identity of its own and probably isn't optimized to do any one thing well.

That being said, I haven't had the pleasure of trying a Kingsley, so I wouldn't be so bold as to pre-judging the marque. I have always wanted to try one, and the new model sounds like it might be just what I am looking for.
 

bluessyndicate

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,528
The one truth I know and occasionally repeat is that the Kingsley site has some of the most accurately representative clips that I have ever come across...not because of studio recording technique, or because of Simon's hands. If you like how the Kingsley clips sound, odds are you'll dig the amp.
 

studiodunn

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
2,554
The one truth I know and occasionally repeat is that the Kingsley site has some of the most accurately representative clips that I have ever come across...not because of studio recording technique, or because of Simon's hands. If you like how the Kingsley clips sound, odds are you'll dig the amp.

+1

seriously GAS inducing clips IMO. Some of the strat clips are just incredible.
 

rrhea

Member
Messages
739
If there are too many knobs and switches, I figure the amp doesn't really have an identity of its own and probably isn't optimized to do any one thing well.


The one truth I know and occasionally repeat is that the Kingsley site has some of the most accurately representative clips that I have ever come across...not because of studio recording technique, or because of Simon's hands. If you like how the Kingsley clips sound, odds are you'll dig the amp.
+ another


You might be put off by the idea of many options on the amp, but no matter what your settings (unless you do something unreasonable, like zero out all the eq knobs, for example) you can't get an unmusical sound out of these things.

You're thinking of a Boogie Mark IV that has a million knobs and switches that can give you so many ways to sound like ass, and several great sweet spots. Kingsley amps are permanently one big sweet spot. :)

However, if a ToneBaron or a D series like Blues' is too much stuff to twiddle with, Simon does make an amp for you. Check out the Classic 30 which [SIZE=-1]features just 3 controls:- volume tone and reverb plus bright and fat switches![/SIZE]

RR
 

StevenA

Senior Member
Messages
3,976
Although the amp has many useful features and great tonal flexibility, it is quite simple to use. While the possibility exists to custom tailor the rig for different sounds, by adjusting a few knobs or switches, for most once set, you're done and it's a touch sensitive two channel amp that is responsive to guitar volume...
I appreciate you sharing your experience

SA
 

riffmeister

Member
Messages
16,606
Hey, in addition to the volume knob, my amp has treble, middle, bass, and reverb controls. Each one goes from 0-10.

That means for a given setting on the volume control, I have 14,641 possible ways to set the amp!!!!!!!!!!
 

daveS

lefty dude on hiatus
Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
1,797
Still trying to get a handle on my Deluxe 32C with Ch.1 cascading into Ch.2
Pentode switch, Triode switch, Ch. 1 and 2 Brite switches, 3 preamp gain stages, EQ lift switch, Ch.1 Boost, Ch.2 Boost, I calculate, and it's been a while since I took algebra:

312 separate settings to choose from

Correct me if I'm wrong.

SA
LOL ! I have no doubt that you can get 312 settings out of this amp. My D32S is by far the most "tweakable" and versatile amp I have. There are knobs and switches all over the amp ! :phones

Here is what I think really puts this amp out in front of so many others in terms of features...

1) EQ lift
2) footswitchable & adjustable boosts on both channels
3) Series / Parallel settings

The EQ lift is an essential setting on this amp IMHO....especially on channel 2....it creates an entirely new dynamic when you "lift" the channel.

FWIW... I think a stratocaster sounds incredible through the D32S. Channel 2 is just voiced so well for a nice Strat with some sweet single coils. Very punchy, dynamic and responsive.

Channel 1 has gobs of crunch and gain on tap if you want it...but it's that smooth, sweet, sustain rich overdrive on channel 1 that is really magical on the D32S. It's got its own voice.

Kingsley Deluxe is by far my favorite EL84 amp and could be my favorite modern amp to date. I'm really glad I discovered these amps.

Simon is a class act as well.

Peace
-Dave

 

Macaroni

Member
Messages
4,351
Flexibility isn't something I need. Actually, if I have to do a lot of "programming" to get an amp where I want it to be, then it isn't the one for me. The amps I love the most are always stone cold simple. If there are too many knobs and switches, I figure the amp doesn't really have an identity of its own and probably isn't optimized to do any one thing well.
There's no 'programming' at all with a Kingsley.

That's the genius of Simon's work. Although the amps have many options, they look like and work like a very straight forward standard amp and you can use it that way to keep it simple - V/T/M/B - plug in and play.

Then if you choose, you have other options to extend the tonal flexibility in many very useful and very musical ways. I guarantee that if you get to try one, and start exploring these options, you'll get it, and wax poetic like all the others above.

I was probably the 2nd person on TGP to get a Kingsley, and I've watched their popularity grow over the last few years as more people finally tried them and got what these amps are all about.

I agree with all the above statements too. :BEER But you guys have to try some different power tubes too - you're missing out on some very nice tonal variety.
 

Macaroni

Member
Messages
4,351
Well, my current (2nd) Kingsley is a D32C, which has 2 x EL84s + 2 octals, so I decided to get a pair of each of the holy grails, ie: RCA 6L6GC, RCA 6V6GTA, Tung Sol 5881, Mullard EL34 xf2, xf4, Amperex EL34, Phillips 7581A. I use Mullard EL84s primarily, but I have a pair of Seimens E84Ls that are also killer. Plus I use NOS preamp tubes and a Mullard GZ34.

Hard to say which are my favorites, but the RCA 6L6s and Mullard/Amperex EL34s are stellar, and I also love the 5881s. Each tube pair lends a specific tonal and feel element that is very discernable.
 
Messages
3,383
Here is what I don't understand:

So many amp builders can't seem to make an amp with tons of knobs and switches sound good. I usually think of those things as options that end up sucking tone. But I used to have a Kingsley D30 that was an absolute monster sounding amp. I couldn't bond with the EL84's and probably would do better with an EL34 ToneBaron, but that D30 was just the most organic, juiciest amp I've played to date. Only other amp builder I know of that really pulls off a super organic sounding amp with lots of options is Two Rock. And guess what? Two Rocks cost 2-3 times as much as Kingsleys. Simon Jarrett is a great guy to talk to about amps, as well.

Damn economy. I'd own a handful of Kingsleys if I had the cash.
 

rrhea

Member
Messages
739
Here is what I don't understand:

So many amp builders can't seem to make an amp with tons of knobs and switches sound good. I usually think of those things as options that end up sucking tone. But I used to have a Kingsley D30 that was an absolute monster sounding amp. I couldn't bond with the EL84's and probably would do better with an EL34 ToneBaron, but that D30 was just the most organic, juiciest amp I've played to date. Only other amp builder I know of that really pulls off a super organic sounding amp with lots of options is Two Rock. And guess what? Two Rocks cost 2-3 times as much as Kingsleys. Simon Jarrett is a great guy to talk to about amps, as well.

Damn economy. I'd own a handful of Kingsleys if I had the cash.
I am certainly no amp expert, but it has to be the circuit design that allows these builders to offer so many tone shaping features and still maintain good tone fidelity.

I bought my ToneBaron early in my boutique amp experience and I am happy that I could avoid the buy/sell/buy cycle that many have gone through to find their favorite amp. Plus, I have gotten to play a zillion nice amps over the last year and none of them except the Fuchs ODS 30 have even come close to making me consider abandoning my TB. And I even bought an ODS30 and love it, but I prefer my Kingsley and play it exclusively in my band.

RR
 

billstets

Member
Messages
892
I've had a D30 2x12 combo for 5 years and it's pretty simple. It has a lot less features than the other models, but still has the pentode/triode, full/half power, EQ lift, volume and gain knobs, two inputs etc. But I pretty much set it one way and use my guitar knobs and pedals.

However I just sent the chassis to Simon to update the circuit to the latest D30 specs and add that 3-way gain switch. I'm also contemplating the PPIMV, but I think I'm going to pass on that. Can't wait to get it back!

I have owned a Mesa, and I could spend hours tweaking all the knobs and switches on it. And there were a lot more than the Kingsley. I would find some great sounds, and then I'd lose them for some reason. I have to agree that the features on a Kingsley are nothng like that. They just shape the great core sound of the amp a little bit, or maybe add some gain.
 

rrhea

Member
Messages
739
Hey billstets, you should consider the PPIMV if Simon can do it on your amp. Since it is defeatable by turing the volume to 10 you really loose nothing by adding it. I love it on my TB and it is unreal how well it works and how good the amp sounds on low volume.

RR
 




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