NPD (Soon): King of Tone

Discussion in 'Pedals' started by Stuff, Jun 29, 2017.

  1. Stuff

    Stuff Senior Member

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    Logged in to do the books for this month ... and there was this email waiting for me. I'm finally (finally!) at the top of the waiting list for a King of Tone pedal from AnalogMan.

    After 2 years of waiting (I applied for the waiting list back on July 19th, 2015), I'd honestly given up ever getting the chance to order one. Freely admit, when I've seen posts on here from folks getting theirs, I've cursed quite a bit in frustration. Over time, I've found other brands (esp Bearfoot FX) to fill up my pedal board. I've taken the money that I set aside for a KoT, and happily spent it on their competitors, because their competitors made something that I could actually buy.

    Aaaand the moment I saw the email, I stopped doing the books and put my order in, like a total hypocritical fan boy :D

    I've gone with 4 jacks, and higher gain on both sides. Almost ordered a black one, but somehow it just seemed wrong not to plump for the classic purple look in the end. I've asked for the toggle switch for the red side too.

    Time to shift some boxes from the back of my pedal cupboard on eBay to pay for this, I reckon. With the customisations and delivery, the KoT cost just short of 450 USD ... and there's still import charges to pay when it reaches the UK. Total price is going to be about 450 GBP (!!) when everyone's had their cut.
     
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  2. Rich

    Rich Non sequitur Premium Member

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    Congratulations in advance! It really is all that and a bag of chips! :thumb:
     
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  3. Stuff

    Stuff Senior Member

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    Had the notification yesterday that the KoT is on its way. That's a lot less than the 2 weeks originally warned about :)

    No idea when it'll turn up. USPS tracking ceases at the US border.
     
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  4. Guitarhack

    Guitarhack Senior Member

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    Great pedal, I love mine. Never selling this one.
     
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  5. Stuff

    Stuff Senior Member

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    Even if I don't get on with it, I won't be flipping it. Some types of pedals (esp MiaB) just don't like my current rig. If things go well later this year, I'm planning on moving to a Kemper to sort things like that :)
     
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  6. Brutus

    Brutus Senior Member

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    I just recently had a box shipped from Croatia to the US. Even though it was through Croatia Postal with their tracking number I was able to track the package from start to delivery via USPS tracking system. Its the same when I have something shipped from the UK or Canada. Try using the USPS tracking number with your countries postal service's tracking system.
     
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  7. Stuff

    Stuff Senior Member

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    Just paid the ransom demand to release it from the clammy hands of government officials. Should be with me sometime on Tuesday :)
     
  8. Stuff

    Stuff Senior Member

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    It's here.

    My first impressions? This is a pedal that I need to put a lot of time into. Straight out the box, it just doesn't grab me the way that other pedals on my board have sometimes done. If I was trying this in a shop, I doubt I'd have gotten enough time with it to seal the deal.

    After waiting 2 years to reach the top of the waiting list, I'm very happy to spend another 2 years getting used to it and gradually dialling in what works for me.
     
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  9. Rich

    Rich Non sequitur Premium Member

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    Here's a good read from when @FennRx first got his KoT.

    Analogman King of Tone
     
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  10. FennRx

    FennRx Senior Member

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    Man oh man I forgot about that thread.
    Fwiw, the king of tone has been on my board since I got it.
     
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  11. Stuff

    Stuff Senior Member

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    Thanks. The tip about the trim pots is a good one. I'll pop mine open and have a play with those.

    There's a couple of things about the KoT that are starting to grow on me. The noise floor is at least as good as BJFE-designed pedals, and possibly even better. Great for quieter passages, and helps with trying to stack the KoT with other pedals. And with a KTR in front of it, instant lead tone that sits effortlessly in a mix.

    Early days :)
     
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  12. lung plunger

    lung plunger Senior Member

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    I just went thru my emails, got on the list 8/16. So hopefully around Christmas. Have had the kot before, but the light bill needed to get paid. Awesome pedal.

    Is there an up charge for the black painted box? I know I'll go high gain red side for sure, and the black box looks pretty sweet.
     
  13. Stuff

    Stuff Senior Member

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    I think the black box was 20 dollars extra. Part of me definitely wishes I'd gone with that option :) There is something iconic about the purple-and-gold look though.
     
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  14. Stuff

    Stuff Senior Member

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    For anyone thinking of getting a KoT themselves, here's where I am with it after (only!) a couple of weeks. Bearing in mind this is just my experience with one KoT through my rig. YMMV and all that.

    I'm really enjoying this pedal for two different uses:
    • lead tone for Les Pauls and PRS 594 (with Klone and OD820 in front)
    • lead and rhythm tones for a Strat
    The KoT's noise floor is superb. Even with both channels on, I can stack it and still have a lot less noise than a BE-OD on its own. (The KoT has pushed the BE-OD off my pedal board for now). The noise floor is easily as good as any BJFE designed pedal I've had. (Once you've stacked BJFE pedals, it's painful going back to some of the better-known brands). I wouldn't be surprised to find it's even better.

    I'm hearing a significant emphasis on the mids. It's got more mids than anything else on my board atm. The mids are so thick and dominant that the pedal sounds like there's no bottom end (it's there, just a struggle to hear it). With both sides on, the KoT sits perfectly (for me) in a mix as a lead tone. Just slots right in there. It's a keeper for that alone. There's a good chance it's going to knock several pedals off the board and take over all lead duties.

    I am not enjoying playing rhythm through the KoT yet.

    The KoT is a very low-gain pedal for most of its range - even my SHOD has more gain. I have to crank it just to get into breakup territory. Once the gain knob gets to about 2 o'clock, the pick dynamics very quickly fall off compared to other pedals on my board. They're not totally squashed, and I doubt an audience would tell the difference. Nowhere near as bad as (say) the Xotic SL Drive, which is a compressed monster of a pedal. Feel-wise, though, it's really noticeable. (Helps with the lead playing - it isn't all bad!)

    I'm finding it very easy to dial in a tone that's either brittle or muddy. Once I've hit the sweet spot, tiny changes to either the volume and tone on my Les Paul are enough to muddy things up again. That's quite frustrating.

    I've tried playing with the internal trim pots for treble. The KoT ships with the trim pots all the way down. At about half-way / 9 o'clock, there's some very unpleasant noise added to both channels. The sweet spot for me is with both trim pots pointing at 6 o'clock. More experimentation needed!

    I'm running to KoT through the clean channel of a Blackstar HT-100. That's a mixed bag of a pedal platform. In particular, Marshall-in-a-Box type pedals have never sounded right through it. Given the KoT's heritage, that's probably part of the problem. Maybe it's time to make the move to a Kemper for more flexibility.

    I've got other pedals that I prefer for Les Paul rhythm tones:
    • Lovepedal's Amp 11 is a similar tone to the KoT. Well, it's in the same ballpark (just). I've got the re-voiced black version. It has sweeter highs and clearer lows, whilst still putting up a solid mid-range.
    • Bearfoot FX's Uber Bee is a completely different tone, with more of a mid-cut than a mid-boost. Produces a perfect Americana tone right out of the box.
    Either of those pedals could be my Desert Island pedal. The KoT, so far, hasn't made it into that conversation.
    None of this is to say that the KoT is a bad pedal. It isn't. Pedals don't normally reach legendary status unless they're something special - and the KoT is in that legendary bracket. So far, though, I'm not feeling it, through my rig after (just) a couple of weeks.

    I'm interested to see how my experience and opinion changes by the end of the year :)
     
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  15. FennRx

    FennRx Senior Member

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    It's definitely not a plug and play pedal. I agree it can be maddening. I also don't use it for a lot of rhythms....both sides are used depending on the type of lead and/or the guitar I'm using.
     
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