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Lovepedal Superlead

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by amdowell, May 20, 2011.

  1. amdowell

    amdowell Supporting Member

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    I was looking for a cool, simple, amp-like distortion to use with my newly acquired AC30 for random heavier riffs. I was really leery about the Lovepedal Superlead as... well, we all know how we feel about Guitar Center. Not to mention, the crappy reviews the LP Superlead gets. But... I tried it and really, really liked it.

    So, I didn't buy it. A few days later went to a place about an hour and a half away that has a GIANT boutique pedal selection and I went to town on that place. Tried out: Wampler Plextortion, Super Plex, Pinnacle II, Cranked AC, Mad Professor Mighty Red Distortion, Catalinbread DLS, Analogman modded DS-1, MXR Custom Badass 78 distortion, Crunchbox, and a slew of others. The only one out of that lot I could get along with was the Cranked AC, followed closely by the Pinnacle, but even then.. it just wasn't the sound I was looking for. So, that was yesterday. Lots of disappointment.

    Today, I hit a different Guitar Center, plugged the Superlead in and, low and behold, still love how it sounds. Even had some compliments on the tone. So I found one in the Emporium and should have it early next week.

    FWIW, there could have been so many factors as to why I didn't dig the Pinnacle the way I thought I would. The store has batteries installed in all their pedals, their "try me" cables are crap, and their AC30 on display was.. iffy... to my ears. I just really, really wanted to fall in love with the Pinnacle or any of the Wamplers for that matter because of the hype, but I followed my ears on this one and I hope to be happy with this choice. Still think I'll pick up a Pinnacle in a month just to try it with my own setup.

    For those of you hoping for a review, here's a little tidbit of what I liked about the Superlead:

    - It's simple. 3 knobs and a mid-boost toggle.
    - It has that big, open, amp-like sound of a loud Marshall 2210. I compare it to that because I'm most familiar with that model. Big open crunch. The Pinnacle could definitely get close to or nail it with that cool Contour knob. Maybe just too many knobbies for me.
    - It's fluid. I look for a smooth, but heavy distortion sound for solos and this thing definitely does it.
    - It's crunchy! Great 800-style, palm-mutey crunch. The Pinnacle, even in modern mode, didn't strike me the way the Superlead did. But, like I said, could be many factors.

    More to come next week when I get mine.

    Sorry for the LONG post. :bonk
     
  2. Troy T. Blues

    Troy T. Blues Comstock Station

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    I really liked it too...alot! The deal breaker for me was rolling off on the guitars volume knob. I didn't really care so much about the "cleanup" factor, but it lost ALL the highs and basically turned to mud. At full bore it's pretty killer though.
     
  3. SonicBlue61

    SonicBlue61 Member

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    ^ I agree. I thought full-on it was pretty cool
     
  4. antbosca

    antbosca Member

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    I have one on the pedal shelf. I guess I felt the same way that it had one killer sound - full-on. I keep it around because it does have a that sharp attack that's hard to get without a real 50 or 100W head.

    I'll have to get mine out and give it another spin.
     
  5. amdowell

    amdowell Supporting Member

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    I see what you guys are talking about, but really that's all I want it for--that balls out, "stack"-sounding distortion. For me, to get that sound out of a single pedal, even though it only does that sound, is pretty amazing. Kind of glad I didn't get any Superlead ball-busters, 'cause I think it's really great.
     
    jpagey likes this.
  6. MHermans

    MHermans Member

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    I have one and like it a lot. I'm more of an overdrive guy, but I'll probably keep this just to have the flavor. It is pretty cool sounding......I use it mainly for recording tight smooth distortion.
     
  7. amdowell

    amdowell Supporting Member

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    I hate to keep commenting on my own post, but that's exactly what I like it for. All the other pedals I tried out were just... not there. I may have not spent enough time with the Pinnacle, but I got the sound nearly right out of the box I was looking for with the Superlead, smooth, tight distortion!
     
  8. niclake13

    niclake13 Member

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    I hate the "_________-in-a-box" reference, but it seriously turned my PRS --> Hot Rod or AC30 into a very 80's-esque Marshall. Wasn't what I was looking for, but that doesn't mean I didn't enjoy it. Great sounding pedal for what it does.
     
  9. MBreinin

    MBreinin Supporting Member

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    Well, I find it a hair sterile into a clean Super Reverb. However, set for medium gain and then stacked into a TS-9, it is special. Nice compressed, smooth and singing leads. I think through a different amp, it would be better. Still, it is a great deal of a pedal with a few sweet spots.

    Mike
     
  10. MHermans

    MHermans Member

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    Here's a demo I did of the Superlead. Beatles tune.....

     
  11. DraggAmps

    DraggAmps Member

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    Maybe it is one of those pedals "made" for Vox type amps, since it can be hard to find pedals that work well with them and some pedals that didn't blow me away with Fender's seem to work well with Vox style amps. I had a Red Head (same pedal as the Superlead) for about a week and it did what I needed if I stacked it with other pedals but I actually got my first Pinnacle while I had the Red Head and got to try them next to each other. For my setup, the Pinn just sounded and felt much better to me. Without the help of any other pedals it was just much bigger and authentic sounding with a real cranked feel. The Red Head had that fuzzy/buzzy characteristic that the Purple Plexi and Provalve also have, which seems to be the signature high gain Lovepedal sound, and it just didn't seem amplike to me. Maybe with a Vox the low end is tight but it wasn't nearly as tight as the Pinnacle with my setup (I've always used Fender and Marshall amps/type-amps until recently the Mesa Transatlantic is the first amp that I've used that has a very authentic Vox tone). As mentioned, the cleanup wasn't there either. That's a big thing for me and the Wampler pedals all deliver that. I've never gotten along with many Lovepedals but I have tried just about every Wampler pedal and I'm a big fan of the way Brian tweaks and builds his pedals. The have all done their own thing very well. I did pick up an actual Superlead too, since they're so cheap and easy to get, but returned it when I found the sound to be exactly the same as the Red Head (and later found out they're the same thing). But I can see how the sort of spongy, fuzzy, smooth tone would work well with a Vox. Lucky for you, the SL is even cheaper used and since it was your favorite, you saved a lot compared to all the others. My current favorite Marshall type pedals were $350 each. And I still have some Wamplers and trying their whole line was really expensive. They're not overpriced, though. They're very nice, well build pedals, and the prices are reasonable. Anyway, enjoy your Superlead! I could never decide where I liked the mids switch.
     
  12. cj_wattage

    cj_wattage Vendor

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    To me it sounds more like a low-cut than a mid boost. And it's interesting that the switch actually toggles between clipping diode types (LED for normal, silicon diodes for the Mids) rather than changing the filtering through an RC network value swap.

    For me, it's a one-trick pony, but it's good at that trick. And given that it's really cheap, that's okay.
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2011
  13. cj_wattage

    cj_wattage Vendor

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    How did you find this out? Did you pop the hood and have a look, or are you judging strictly from the sound?

    Just curious, as I spent some time with the Superlead, and had an extended look-see at the PCB.
     
  14. DraggAmps

    DraggAmps Member

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    I did open them up and look around, as I do with all new pedals, but I won't claim that I they were exactly the same, just from memory or looking at the PCB's. It wasn't just the sound, though. I know how similar two pedals can sound and arrive at those sounds completely different. I learned that they were the same from searching google and reading lots of old posts. A lot of people have said it's the same pedal in a different box (which makes sense to me, that he would take an existing pedal that people liked and put it in a different box to sell exclusively at GC for a cheaper price, which is the same thing GC has had other companies do for their GC exclusive pedals) and other people have actually had both hand in hand and taken them apart to compare the circuits as well as play them next to each other to find they sound exactly the same, not just close. It just seems to be the general consensus that they're the same pedal, which also might explain why the Red Head really isn't for sale anywhere anymore, nor on the LP site anymore. I really haven't any/many people arguing that they're different pedals and probably the biggest confirmation, to me, was that I didn't see Majic Boy (Sean) denying that they were the same, since he's usually pretty good about trying to dispel the rumors and telling his side of things.
     
  15. MAGICboy

    MAGICboy Gold Supporting Member

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    I went with a different op amp, RC4558 in the superlead, changed drive and output pots to 50K although some super's have 100K in them.. also switched from greenie caps in the redhead to box film on the super with slight, insignificant value changes.. They are very similar and pretty much do the same thing.. The REDhead was based on the darling devil which was hand wired / no toggle switch..

    I didn't have much success with the RH in the USA, They did better overseas. I pretty much ate what I had into them financially, re grouped and made the superlead for GC..
     
  16. cj_wattage

    cj_wattage Vendor

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    Cool. Thanks for the clarification. :aok
     
  17. MAGICboy

    MAGICboy Gold Supporting Member

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    anytime... ;)
     
  18. Jacob Van Noy

    Jacob Van Noy Member

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    Is the tone knob just used to tame the high end? I run mine wide open and it doesn't seem overly bright.
     
  19. gitpicker

    gitpicker Silver Supporting Member

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    FWIW I have a RedHead and really like the way it sounds into my '65 Super Reverb. I went on a high-gain pedal quest several months ago and all that is left is the RH and a Crunch Box. I find that through my rig gain settings above 2:00 get that "buzzy" tone, but below that the tone is very natural. This pedal really shines for single note leads, really fat and smooth, even high up on the neck on the skinny strings (think "Sweet Child O' Mine tone). As far as clean up with the guitar's volume knob, I find that turning the pedal off usually does the trick!
     
  20. MAGICboy

    MAGICboy Gold Supporting Member

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    LOL!!

    I have a treble bleed circuit on my volume knob.. It cleans up great for me..
     

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