THD UniValve Recomendation

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by theHoss, Oct 28, 2005.

  1. theHoss

    theHoss Member

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    Howdy,

    I am considering the pruchace of a THD UniValve. I am looking to get an amp strictly for overdriven tone. One that I can roll off the volume to clean it up a bit, but crank it to get a nice smooth lead tone. I want it for home tube overdriven tone (liking the built in Attenuator). Also, I want it for local blues jams (pretty moderate volume establishment, nothing over the top). So I hope it would be loud enough for that. Any Uni players out there that could contribute? I like the price tag, and the attenuator. Are there other amps I should consider?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. samtheman

    samtheman Member

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    I had Uni, great amp with great tones. It´s have enough volume with loud drummer (IMO)

    cheers

    sam
     
  3. GCDEF

    GCDEF Supporting Member

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    Not my first choice in amps, but if you want it just for overdrive tones and use mostly in the home, it would probably work for you. To me its distortion has a more moden voicing than you'd want for blues work.

    The rock input is easily loud enough for jamming. The roll input, probably not.
     
  4. onemind

    onemind Member

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    I come back to my univalve often for high gain tones, it always is a nice surprise. The cabinet is very important (I use a two rock 1x12 and an avatar with a Celestion Vintage and Private Jack). I'd feel weird taking it out to a gig though.

    (s)
     
  5. Gumby

    Gumby Member

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    I have the Univalve, it is my #1 at home amp for the past 2 years. Remember that as I say the following. Con first: The attenuator is not of the same quality as the stand alone units are and it colors the sound quite a bit beyond the half way mark. It’s a bright amp, which helps it cut thru the mix exceptionally well, but it’s too bright for some tastes. You must play it to see for your self. Now the pros are that it is a straight forward circuit that allows for a very short signal path. That is not just propaganda as it is very noticeably touch sensitive and very unforgiving- meaning everything comes thru, pick attack and fretting become issues as this amp forces you to cleaner, more defined techniques. The pay-off is outstanding, when you desire such definition. The interchangeable single output tube and 2 preamp tubes are the best method for controlling volume. I have not used the attenuator since the honeymoon. I run a 6v6 when I want to tone it down for home playing. It’s never going to be a T.V. volume amp, for that you should look into the 1-5 watt range. And it’s not big enough for anything other then small club use- no loud drummers not enough headroom on the cleans. No reverb, fx loop, nothing extra just a very sturdy well thought out design and execution, of an amp that has received much acclaim. Take your time in picking out the right cabinet as they affect the tone more then some realize. Good luck.
     
  6. amper

    amper Member

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    I agree with Gumby, in that the built-in Hot Plate in the Uni is not quite the same as a regular, external Hot Plate, especially the noise reduction circuit (the light blubs). I talked to Andy Marshall about this, and he confirmed there are significant differences. I prefer the external Hot Plate for live playing.

    I still wish the Univalve had reverb.
     
  7. JoyfulNoise

    JoyfulNoise Member

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    I think the Univalve would be a great single channel amp for home use. I agree with most of the statements above such as it being voiced bright; it's an articulate amp (which really helps your playing as it forces you to hear any sloppiness); using different tube combinations for volume control.

    Although the built in Hotplate is not as great as the stand alone unit, it does suffice for home use and I really didn't have any problems dealing with the sound changes at such low levels.
     
  8. mosesblues

    mosesblues Member

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    If you are looking for a "nice smooth lead tone" for local blues jams, then the Uni might be a bit to bright and crisp - as others have said.

    I have used it as a platform for pedals at low-mid volume blues and classic rock jams with fine results (a controlled drummer is key in this situation). Set the amp to the edge of break up and press it with an OD pedal for more singing tone on leads. The brightness you hear playing the amp alone actually cuts and records pretty well in a band context.

    Having said this, I never connected with my Uni enough to choose it for singing tone when I needed it.

    Great amp for illustrating every bit of someones technical capability and dynamics.

    Hope this is helpful.

    Moses
     
  9. trisonic

    trisonic Member

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    I thought it was bright when I first got one but now I don't. You have to use the tone controls unlike a BF Fender.
    I also use 6K6's (although I'm out of these right now), 6V6's or EL37's almost exclusively - and a KT66 for a change. Weird thing is mine is loudest with an EL84 which I don't understand......

    Best, Pete.
     
  10. markp

    markp Member

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    I totally miss my UNI.
    Volume and tone controlls on guitar will give alot of tones ,some times not brite enough when you roll the volume down.Wide open volume on a brite guitar and the wrong cab ,some one can get hurt.

    It ook a 73 jmp whith a David Bray mod to send the UNI down the road,but I wish I could have the $s to keep it.
    Uni=Fun
     
  11. tedm

    tedm Gold Supporting Member

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    Could be my ears, or that I have a very early unit, but I can't hear any differences between the internal and external hotplates.

    I like the Univalve with 12AX7's, and an EL34 or 6L6WGB power tube, and go line out often, or through a single 1x12 sealed ported V30.
     
  12. barron

    barron Member

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    Nice civil feed back for a change.
     
  13. sovtekking

    sovtekking Supporting Member

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    Hey man, i've got a bivalve that is the 30 watt version of the uni i believe. It would work great for the type of jamming that you are talking about doing. Not to violate any Emporium rules here, but Im looking to sell it if you are interested. sovtekking@yahoo.com
     
  14. Damon

    Damon Member

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    The EL84 doesn't need a big signal to drive it, so it's more sensitive. Around 7 volts, compared to the 6v6 at 12, EL37 at 13, and KT66 at 15. The 6L6 types also have a lower plate load requirement (about half), so the EL84 might be getting a better match to your speaker cabinet, delivering more power. And, the EL84 is well known for its affinity for the frequencies we are most sensitive to (Fletcher-Munson). Three guesses, anyway. What kind of 6K6 is your favourite? I have a bunch packed away...
     
  15. trisonic

    trisonic Member

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    Visseaux.

    thanks, Pete.
     
  16. Damon

    Damon Member

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    Yup, I have one of those, still in the corrugated wrapping. Let me know if you want it.
     
  17. Gumby

    Gumby Member

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    Damon, did you bring enough gum for the rest of the class? Can I have a piece?:p
     
  18. lydog

    lydog Member

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    I had a Univalve and sold it for a Bivalve once they came out. In the end, I sold it as well. Just not enough headroom for my application. (But I'm now playing a 60w Fender Concert II that is perfect for me.)

    Definitely get the Bivalve in your situation if you decide on a THD product.

    What do I miss about my Bivalve... the ability to swap tubes and cabinets. Not that I ever DID that (although I thought I would do it all the time), I spend all my money on my mortgage, but if/when I stumble into a chest of $100 bills, I'll probably pick up a Bivalve, a bunch of tubes, and a quiver of cabinets and mess around for days/weeks/years. That's probably the best way to "test drive" the countless options musicians have nowadays regarding amps, tubes, speakers, cabinets, etc.
     

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