We’re all familiar with stomp boxes designed to sound like tube circuitry, but most of these pedals genuinely just improve the sound of the tube amps they’re currently plugged into rather of really sounding like tubes.
Seymour Duncan’s new Palladium Obtain Stage pedal is one particular of the few rare exceptions, featuring a versatile distortion and tone-shaping circuit that not only sounds like a tube amp but feels like 1 as well.
As a outcome, the Palladium sounds as good driving the front end of an currently overdriven tube amp as it does plugged directly into a power amp and utilised as a preamp.
With nine knobs on its front panel, the Palladium provides a choice of controls that rivals these discovered on many contemporary tube amps. In reality, in some methods it outdoes them, primarily thanks to the extra versatility of its semi-parametric midrange section, which gives a Frequency knob for picking any midrange frequency among 255Hz to 1.1kHz and a separate midrange Level manage. There are also amp-like Bass, Treble, and Presence EQ knobs plus a Resonance manage that permits customers to dial in the enhanced low-finish thump of a 4×12 speaker cabinet. Like any great distortion pedal, the Palladium also contains the requisite Level and Gain knobs, and it has a separate knob for dialing in the gain level of the footswitchable Enhance function.
The footswitch on the left is a hardwired correct bypass on/off switch with a red LED that illuminates brightly when the effect is on, whilst the footswitch on the right engages the Increase function and a corresponding green LED. The mono input and output jacks are specialist high quality and are situated out of the way at the back of the pedal. The Palladium operates with any 9- to 18-volt DC center unfavorable power provide (no battery operation).
Due to the fact the Palladium’s controls are primarily identical to those located on most amps these days, it’s really straightforward to dial in any preferred distortion tone or texture. The EQ section is active, delivering +/-15dB of enhance/reduce at 100Hz for Bass, +/-12dB of boost/cut for Mid, +/-13dB of increase/cut at 2.7kHz for Treble, and +/-13dB of boost/reduce at five.2kHz for Presence. Most guitarists will locate these EQ frequencies perfect for dialing in tones appropriate for any style of music from blues and classic rock to high-achieve modern metal. The EQ normally sounds the best with the knobs dialed between 9 to 3 o’clock, although a lot more extreme increase or cut settings can compensate for an overly dark or bright sounding amp or speakers employed with the pedal.
Whereas many “tube” pedals in fact sound stiff and compressed, the Palladium responds to the dynamics of your playing, so overdrive tones can turn into more distorted as you play forcefully and cleaner as you play lightly or turn down your guitar’s volume knob. Similarly, most pedals sound harsh and a single-dimensional when plugged straight into a power amp, but the Palladium turns even the most unforgiving solid-state energy amp into a warm, expressive guitar amp with all of the harmonic complexity and richness of a committed guitar amp. Guitarists can even plug the Palladium straight into a recording console and obtain impressive tones, though a speaker simulator is also needed to obtain the most excellent, lifelike results.
The Enhance function summons smooth, sustaining lead tones, especially when the Obtain knob is cranked up past 12 o’clock. Like many distortion/overdrive pedals presented these days, the Palladium can provide a transparent clean boost that will push an currently overdriven tube amp into a sweet spot at lower volume levels, but it’s most successful when utilised like an further channel added to your amp.
STREET Price tag: $ 299
MANUFACTURER: Seymour Duncan, seymourduncan.com
• The versatile EQ controls offer varying levels of increase/reduce finely tuned to frequencies perfect for most overdriven and distorted guitar tones.
• The Resonance manage makes the bass heavier but also tighter, replicating the tonality of a closed-back 4×12 speaker cabinet.
THE BOTTOM LINE: The Palladium Obtain Stage pedals offers impressive tonal versatility and dynamic responsiveness related to a tube amp with a wide rainbow of tones from overdrive crunch to saturated higher-acquire distortion.