Hagerman VALVE (tube pedal review/demo)

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KVRist
36 posts since 15 Nov, 2020

Post Tue Apr 13, 2021 4:06 am

The VALVE is a ‘keep on’ pedal, and Jim Hagerman classifies it as a boost (upward of 20dB), but it is a tone charmer that has overdrive properties. At $129 USD, the VALVE is one of the best bangs for the buck, as it fattens up a Strat, makes humbuckers growl, and simply adds more life and dimension. Moreover, by placing a boost in front of the VALVE, to push its 12AU7 tube even harder, there is a BK Butler pedal effect, as demoed in the final lead section to the intro composition on the accompanying video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q2zycMzNb5c

Now, keep in mind that this is a tube-driven pedal with no silicon involved, operating in starved-plate and starved-heater mode (viz., the tube receives adequate voltage, but the plate and grid are starved of higher voltages that would bring them within their intended headroom and total harmonic distortion parameters) and all done on a typical 9VDC power supply (also works with 12V). This configuration has not been successful until now, although others have tried. The Matsumi 12V ValveCaster attempts this, but has limited performance due to not addressing grid current at such a low bias.

I did indicate what it does to a tone in general terms, but insofar as my own experience, I added the Hagerman Valve to two different tube amps (Orange Tiny Terror and the Peavey Classic 20), as well as the Fractal FM3 modeler. Jim Hagerman claims great things with solid state amps, but I did not have access to that platform. Without fail, the results were superb. This full-bandwidth pedal resulted in tube amps sounding thicker and richer; and the FM3 becomes more energized and realistic. Clean signals sounded glassier and vibrant, merely by placing the VALVE’s ‘level’ at parity (about 9:30 o’clock); and once past that level, there is increasing dirt/breakup, and to the point of a classic rock sound (with level cranked full). And yet, the amp still retains its underlying tonal characteristics. Dirty and hi-gain amps mixed very well with the VALVE, and with greater richness, gain and boost at only 10-o’clock, as though modded and super-charged. Of course, you can get a lot more saturated for those creamy, gooey leads by placing the level all the way up for lead solos.

The VALVE is true-bypass and well-built with a heavy aluminum chassis power-coated in black with white lettering/graphics. It comes with a 12AU7 tube, which should be removed during transport, unless you have a protective pedalboard cover/case. Its design permits it to be Velcroed as usual, but also screwed down into a wooden pedalboard or bolted onto a metal unit. As mentioned, it takes both 9VDC and 12VDC power supplies, requiring only 135mA power (150mA if running 12V) via a standard negative-center cable. Other specs include 100k ohm input impedance and 100Hz to 20kHz bandwidth. One caveat is that the VALVE’s level control knob is small, which makes it a bit awkward if changing the level on stage. However, that is where an extra boost comes in handy (such as the Hagerman Boost), i.e., the VALVE can be left on and used to add dimension to rhythms, and then the added Boost engaged for fat leads and that BK Butler effect.

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KVRist
244 posts since 22 Nov, 2015

Post Tue Apr 13, 2021 8:03 am

...
Last edited by Havok on Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

Rad Grandad
33180 posts since 6 Sep, 2003 from Downeast Maine

Post Tue Apr 13, 2021 8:18 am

moved...shadow topic left behind

KVRist

Topic Starter

36 posts since 15 Nov, 2020

Post Tue Apr 13, 2021 2:40 pm

Hink wrote:
Tue Apr 13, 2021 8:18 am
moved...shadow topic left behind
Uncertain what that means, but OK. Have a good one!

Rad Grandad
33180 posts since 6 Sep, 2003 from Downeast Maine

Post Tue Apr 13, 2021 3:25 pm

I moved it to the guitar forum from effects where you posted it, I left a shadow topic there...simply means the link is still there but it takes you here

KVRist

Topic Starter

36 posts since 15 Nov, 2020

Post Wed Apr 14, 2021 12:21 pm

The VALVE added to a solid state amp:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LO4l2eHDi94

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KVRAF
3637 posts since 16 Aug, 2017 from Land of The Charity Shop

Post Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:26 am

I was curious about Little Bear G3 tube pedal.
Laney Cub-Super8 5w tube combo amp is cheaper than some one tube driven pedals.
There's also the Behringer VT999 and the Orange Terror Stamp pedal with a tube, EQ, cab sim and FX loop. ImageImage

 
Last edited by The Noodlist on Sat Apr 17, 2021 6:32 am, edited 9 times in total.
Currently trying to turn noise into music. :neutral: Is boutique the new old?

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KVRAF
3637 posts since 16 Aug, 2017 from Land of The Charity Shop

Post Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:58 am

Currently trying to turn noise into music. :neutral: Is boutique the new old?

Rad Grandad
33180 posts since 6 Sep, 2003 from Downeast Maine

Post Mon Apr 19, 2021 7:43 am

The Noodlist wrote:
Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:58 am
https://youtu.be/1LUoF7_BVv8
and here is a great example of plate starved trash :lol: :lol: what terrible sound, lifeless, flat, dead fuzz, likely no sustain...the best sound I heard was it stopping.

Look 65 bux for anything tube? :lol: :lol:

Dynamics is what tubes are all about imo but it takes power to achieve, not a 9v...transformers, to bring the juice up to like to 150 volts or better yet imo 300 volts. There is no dynamics to the sound of that pedal...

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KVRAF
3637 posts since 16 Aug, 2017 from Land of The Charity Shop

Post Mon Apr 19, 2021 10:49 am

Hink wrote:
Mon Apr 19, 2021 7:43 am
The Noodlist wrote:
Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:58 am
https://youtu.be/1LUoF7_BVv8
and here is a great example of plate starved trash :lol: :lol: what terrible sound, lifeless, flat, dead fuzz, likely no sustain...the best sound I heard was it stopping.

Look 65 bux for anything tube? :lol: :lol:

Dynamics is what tubes are all about imo but it takes power to achieve, not a 9v...transformers, to bring the juice up to like to 150 volts or better yet imo 300 volts. There is no dynamics to the sound of that pedal...
I have to agree somewhat, It seems to be the search for a convenient method of direct and silent recording. There are people who praise starved tube pedals and have no issues.

I recently played through my Laney LC30 II after neglecting it for many months, the guitars sounded so much better and was also inspiring to play through. Amp sims and pedals direct are no contest, these shouldn't stop anyone making music.

I have these issues.
The amp sounds great in the room - great for just solo playing
Capturing that sound you hear
Making the sound work in a mix
I want to record guitar silently
Last edited by The Noodlist on Mon Apr 19, 2021 10:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
Currently trying to turn noise into music. :neutral: Is boutique the new old?

Rad Grandad
33180 posts since 6 Sep, 2003 from Downeast Maine

Post Mon Apr 19, 2021 10:53 am

The Noodlist wrote:
Mon Apr 19, 2021 10:49 am
Hink wrote:
Mon Apr 19, 2021 7:43 am
The Noodlist wrote:
Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:58 am
https://youtu.be/1LUoF7_BVv8
and here is a great example of plate starved trash :lol: :lol: what terrible sound, lifeless, flat, dead fuzz, likely no sustain...the best sound I heard was it stopping.

Look 65 bux for anything tube? :lol: :lol:

Dynamics is what tubes are all about imo but it takes power to achieve, not a 9v...transformers, to bring the juice up to like to 150 volts or better yet imo 300 volts. There is no dynamics to the sound of that pedal...
I have to agree, It seems to be the search for a convenient method of direct and silent recording.

I recently played through my Laney LC30 II after neglecting it for many months, the guitars sounded so much better and was also inspiring to play through. Amp sims and pedals direct are no contest, these shouldn't stop anyone making music.

I have these issues.
The amp sounds great in the room - great for just solo playing
Capturing that sound you hear
Making the sound work in a mix
I want to record guitar silently
https://tedweber.com/gadgets/attenuators/

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