TopHat King Royale vs. Emplexador

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by rawkguitarist, Feb 12, 2008.

  1. rawkguitarist

    rawkguitarist Member

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    All you TopHat experts (teleplayer, riffmeister) out of these amps which is louder. I know this would be hard to tell, but what do you think?

    I'm in need of a louder amp than my Club Royale for a few gigs. I've been talking to Brian about a possible custom rig, that would consist of a cathode biased EL34 ran King Royale :)dude). Of course it would be about the same power as the 4 EL84s AFAIK. I recently had an Emplexador for a few weeks for some gigs and although it was impressively loud and clean (weird, huh?) I just didn't really dig the tone. Just wasn't my thang... Which got talking to Brian about the custom King.

    What do you think? Bare in mind, I'm talking clean headroom when I'm asking about loudness here.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Kiwi

    Kiwi Silver Supporting Member

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    Some thoughts for max clean headroom, since that seems to be what you're after:

    - The King Royale has a Clean mini-toggle that can apply to either channel, extending the clean headroom. It's rated at 35w and the chime of the EL84s may cut a little better than the Emplex.

    - If you're talking to Brian about an EL34-powered King Royale, which is a neat idea, you might also consider a Matchless Clubman. The Clubber is also 35w and has an impressive amount of clean headroom and stiff bottom till way loud - especially into a 4-ohm Matchless cabinet.

    =K
     
  3. ROKY

    ROKY Member

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    Hey Aaron, I was talking about something similiar over at the Tophat
    forum recently. A TopHat Emperor model that would have the King preamp
    channels but with EL34s-- although I was wanting fixed bias w/ a SS rect.
    as part of my ideal package.

    I have a King Royale and an older('98) Emplexador, and the King has
    more clean headroom available. Clearly my Emplex is more 50W Marshall
    so you're not necessarily looking for that much clean headroom with that
    type of amp, anyway ..:nono

    Haven't played the latest version Emplex, but I'm guessing it has more
    clean headroom in Vintage mode, although probably not that much .

    If Brian would build a custom amp for you(I'm sure he would) I'd be really
    excited to hear about it.

    He might be willing to use the Emplex trannies w/the Vandy 33 platform !

    That seems like a workable idea.. re-tune the EQ channel to be more
    interactive like a Vox circuit .. and BOOM .. you'd have your amp, more or
    less.
     
  4. riffmeister

    riffmeister Gold Supporting Member

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    I had an Emplexador for a couple of years, it could be dialed in for fairly loud (mostly) clean tone, but that's not the way I used it! ;) I *think* the MkII with larger trannies has even more clean headroom if desired, and I also think the new trannies give it a wider frequency response. I owned a King Royale for a very short while in 2002, so I can't really comment meaningfully on that. But I'm guessing Kiwi's comments are spot on.....the extra upper mid presence of the King compared to the Emplex will probably make it sound louder (more presence in the sensitive part of your hearing) even tho it's a few less watts.
     
  5. rawkguitarist

    rawkguitarist Member

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    Thanks for the reply's guy's!

    I was actually surprised at how loud the Emplexador (50 watt), even clean was. I played it at a couple of gigs where I need to be quite loud (and fairly clean) and it worked great. It's just the low mid bark didn't do it for me in this situation.

    I would also prefer a solid state recto for my custom King Royale too, I'll have to ask him about that, thanks for reminding me. Brian is in fact willing to work with me on it, as he would be with a lot of the faithful TopHaters. I'll have to talk to him about trannie choices too.

    I told him first I had to pay $4k for my Koll (should be this month :RoCkIn) and soon after I should be able to place the order.

    It sounds like I'm going down the right road though with the custom King Royale.

    *BUT, I mentioned to him also making it a class AB EL34. He for some reason didn't seem to hip on it, said it'd sound more like a AC50. Is that a bad thing? What do you guy's think? Does the cathode bias make the amp more "chimey"?
     
  6. openbar

    openbar Silver Supporting Member

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    I've considered asking him to convert my King to EL34's, wonder how much $$$ ?
     
  7. gushtone

    gushtone Silver Supporting Member

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    I have an earlier King Royale that does not have the clean switch, and it does not have what I would call good clean headroom. However, I called Brian to see about that Clean switch mod and he said it does not make much difference (he used the phrase "very subtle") and suggested it would not be worth the added expense. Anyway, great amp, has fantastic cleans, but starts the Voxy grind pretty early (before 3 on the dial) on both channels.

    Peace...
     
  8. ROKY

    ROKY Member

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    Cathode bias just yields a smoother/more gradual transition into overdrive.
    Not so sure how much it contributes to overall chime factor.

    My Hiwatt can be set to be very chimey and it's class AB fixed bias with
    a fairly stiff power supply.

    It chimes because of the way the EQ functions and the way I play when
    I want to hear that sorta thing.

    Brian's knowledge/expertise is not being questioned, here but ..

    Brian likes what Brian likes .. if he doesn't think something is a good idea
    it doesn't necessarily make it a bad idea if it's something ,,you like.:AOK

    An AC50 is great amp, and still fairly underrated.

    If Brian's open to doing this build then you're already in good shape, just
    figure out what you want and stick to your guns on it, since it's your
    money and your amp.

    You nailed it earlier when you mentioned the low-mids of the Marshall.
    They can be hard to get around if you don't want them in the sonic
    picture..
    That's what I love about the King Royale.. I can dial the low-mids out
    when I want to, and retain all the bass, mids, and treble .

    I'll be really excited if you get this amp built, and will be curious to see
    what he'll charge you, and what trannies he ends up using-- whether that
    be the Heyboers from the MKII Emplex or if he has them wind a custom
    set or .. ??

    Here's a thread where ironically I mentioned a similiar amp over at the
    TopHat forum where my screen name is "Chimey Limey"

    The amp was supposed to be called a TopHat Emperor.
    This model, of course, doesn't exist, but, man . . . it should !

    http://www.tophatamps.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=893
     
  9. sickboy79

    sickboy79 Member

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    That would be a cool amp indeed! I own an Emplexador myself and think it's an absolutely phenominal amp! Really hard to beat for classic and hot rodded Marshall tones. I've never played a King Royale - but, sure would like to!
     
  10. frankencat

    frankencat Guitarded Gold Supporting Member

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    Try 6L6's or KT66's in the Emplex if you want a different sonic base. It sounds really nice this way IMHO.
     
  11. ROKY

    ROKY Member

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    The clean switch, is not very subtle on mine an '02 model; especially
    on the full-EQ channel - it seems to automatically cut low mids and...
    ...clean up the amp. The amp set to 'normal' and the clean switch
    also engaged, is a way different vibe than the amp set the opposite way:
    'Normal' and 'FAT' switches 'on' yielding more gain and crunch .

    You must have a fairly early one. I haven't played one, but I've heard
    that they are more Marshally than Voxy in nature as far as the character
    of the breakup.

    Different transformers than what are now used in post-millenium versions.
     
  12. rawkguitarist

    rawkguitarist Member

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    Yep, in the next 3 months or so I should be in a cash position to place this order. I'll definitly post some info on the project when it gets underway.
     
  13. ROKY

    ROKY Member

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    I have KT66's in my Emplex .. it still behaves like a Marshall.
    .. of course, that's still a good thing.

    What I'd like to get around to trying is a 12AY7 in V1, but I'd need to
    order one, first. It'd be interesting to see how Tweed Bassman-esque
    I could get it, since the mids can be set pretty flat .
     
  14. ROKY

    ROKY Member

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    I think you would absolutely love it especially thru one of your 4x12s .

    ... but,with your sick amp collection you're def'ly not tone deficient .:dude
     
  15. meterman

    meterman Member

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    I've got an Emplex and a King Royale running 4x6V6s (technically called an Embassy and rated at 35w, no longer made). The Emplex with EL34s running in AB is much louder through the same cab, it sounds huge even through a 2x12 but the preamp is gainier so in terms of headroom it might be a wash. The King Royale would basically be a louder version of your Club Royale so if you like your current sound but just need more power that's the way to go. It can stay pretty clean up to around 2:00 on the volumes and by that time is quite loud, definitely loud enough for most any gigging situation I'm likely to run in to. I find the clean toggle to be a pretty dramatic reduction in gain and volume, but I don't use it as I tend to run an edge-of-dirt base tone and add pedals (fuzz, TIM, Dyna Red) for gain....the Vanderbilt 33 is also around ~33w but with smaller transformers and earlier breakup than the KR.
     
  16. dehughes

    dehughes Member

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    If you want more clean headroom and you like your CR's tone, a King is the next logical step.

    Frankly, if I were to up in size from a Club Royale, I'd consider an Embassy (if they were made....) or an Ambassador 35. The King Royale is a great amp, mind you, but Brian just has something going on with his larger chassis 6V6 designs...

    This is assuming you use pedals for overdrive. If not, then the Emplex IS the way to go. Clean, though, with headroom, Ambassador 35 2x12, no question. Bigger would be the 50, but then that's 6L6s and fixed bias. Different beast.
     
  17. sweetpea

    sweetpea Supporting Member

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    I am surprised that their is no mention of the
    Super Deluxe?
     
  18. meterman

    meterman Member

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    Yeah the SD would be another good choice, fitting in between the Club Royale/Deluxe and the KR/Ambassador in terms of volume and headroom. The SD has higher output from the 6L6s, but still has the smaller trannies and chassis of the Club amps so it's rated around ~33w but with less low end thump and earlier breakup than the larger chassis amps.

    Lots of great choices....collect 'em all! ;)
     
  19. rawkguitarist

    rawkguitarist Member

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    Yeah, I'm wanting as loud, as beefing and as big of a "Royale" as possible. I know that due to the logarithmic ratio of volume increase to wattage increase the King's not going to be twice as loud. But I need something significantly louder/bigger than my Royales. I don't think the Super Deluxe will offer the significant difference I need.

    Guy's bare in mind the only reason I really need a louder amp is for a gig I play for several months each year at a 10,000 seat basketball stadium, NO PA! I've been using my two Club Royales literally cranked on the master volume. Of course they don't have much headroom at that level (but you'd be surprised how clean my SS recto circuits are compared to the newer circuit). So I plan on using the King on my side of the stage and my 2x12 Club Royale on the other side.
     
  20. rawkguitarist

    rawkguitarist Member

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    PS. dehughes, yes I use an Eternity for OD and either a custom BJF Dyna Red or Keeley RAT for distortion. I require a "real" clean tone. The way I describe that is with little or no perceptible breakup in the tone at all. Also, I came up with a way to test how clean an amp really is. You turn your guitar's tone control to zero, and hit say a 9th chord real hard. Any clipping masked by the other wise clear tone of the amp stands out big time.

    Thanks for the conversation guys!
     

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