New Quilter SuperBlock Mini Heads, $249

chris m.

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Here are unboxing photos. Sounds nice through my 12” Red Fang. Next will try XLR out with cab sim to PA, and some pedals. It does have an effects loop.

The big issue I have right now it’s lots of noise with single coils. Not just hum but a very fast clicking sound that goes away if I use a humbucker. In a live gig it would probably be okay, but awful for recording.
 

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chris m.

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OK, here's my tone report:

1) Plugged into an actual guitar speaker cabinet-- in this case a 12" Red Fang. The amp sounds really, really good in this mode. I think it could easily go head to head with TMTR or TMDR in terms of tone. Plenty loud, too. And I didn't even try my 4-ohm, 2x12 cab, which is allowable-- it accepts loads of 16, 8, or 4 ohms. I could totally gig with this setup as basically a traditional guitar amp. My favorite was the '65 amp. The other two settings basically had different level of mids to my ears. Not really too different sounding.

With the gain turned up going into a good speaker cab I could get a nice, classic black face grind. A really good tone. With the gain dialed back I got really nice "chime" and very lovely clean tones.

But one HUGE problem: super sensitive to single coil hum and noise. I was getting lots of hum and a terrible high frequency clicking sound with single coil guitars. With humbuckers or my EMG-equipped Strat, it sounded great with very little noise. But any traditional single coils were super noisy, far noisier than when I use other amps or my POD Go. I think maybe they should build these with more shielding or something. I could live with it for gigs, but not for recording.

2) Using the XLR out with cab sim into a PA. This sounded OK, but in either "normal" or "bright" position it didn't sound nearly as good as using the speaker out into an actual guitar cabinet. The XLR out is a line level signal, but its level is controlled by the master volume on the Quilter.

3) Using the speaker out into a guitar cabinet, and the XLR out into a P.A. with cab sim at the same time. Because the master controls both the level going to the P.A. as well as the level going to the guitar cabinet via the speaker out, I had to do some jiggering. I think the way to go would be to get the volume level you want for your guitar cabinet, assuming you are using it as a stage monitor. Once you have that dialed, then adjust the P.A. channel volume level to get the final level you want coming out of the P.A. I wasn't cranking the master volume, but even if I did I think as long as I compensated by turning the P.A. channel volume level way down it would probably be OK.

Here's the thing, though. The sound coming via the cab sim doesn't sound nearly as good as the sound coming out of the guitar speaker. I got the two to sound somewhat close if I chose the '65 amp and used the normal cab sim out. But if I wanted the optimal sound I could get out of the unit I think I would probably actually mike the guitar speaker cabinet rather than using the XLR out.

4) Using the headphones out. Sounds really meh, especially with any distortion. Might work better with different headphones than the Beyerdynamics I was using.

5) Running pedals into the Quilter. It didn't like dirt pedals all that much. My dirt pedals didn't sound nearly as good running through the Quilter into my 12" Red Fang as they did running through a MusicMaster Bass tube amp into the exact same 12" cabinet. I don't think the analog, solid-state amp in the Quilter responds to dirt pedals quite as well as a tube amp does. They sounded a bit more compressed, nasal, and obviously like effects pedals were in the chain rather than sounding more "transparent". It tolerated the SD1 OK, but hated my MI Audio Crunch Box (a Marshall in a Box pedal).

6) Running a POD Go into the Quilter with the XLR out on the Quilter set to "FRFR". The idea here is that if you are using IRs or other amp/cab sims in something like a Helix, then you can still run it through the Quilter to take advantage of its XLR out, but set the cab sim to FRFR, which is basically no cab sim. It sounded OK for clean patches, but any dirt sounds coming out of the POD Go sounded horrible going through the Quilter. As in really, really bad. Way better to just plug the POD Go straight into the PA using the 1/4" line out.

I have a pretty decent Deluxe Reverb patch on my POD Go and I think it sounds as good or maybe better going straight into a PA than the Quilter sounds going into a P.A. via its XLR out and cab sim.

Now I admit that I didn't research every possible tweak I could do to optimize tone in various configurations. But part of it for me is that I shouldn't have to work too hard. That's what I like about old fashioned tube amps. Very easy to dial in great tone quickly.

So based on what I've observed so far, the primary use case for me would be to use it as an amp to power a guitar speaker cabinet. I would mike that cabinet and run the miked signal to the P.A. rather than use the XLR cab sim out.

I would only use the XLR out in a pinch-- whether to a P.A. or into a D/A converter going into a DAW. I would only use the headphone out in a pinch-- the headphone out in my POD Go sounds way, way better.

I think I might still keep it. If you have a good guitar cabinet laying around for $249 for a Superblock you can have something that will give a Tonemaster a run for its money, IMO...in terms of having a light weight option to a tube amp that has really good tone. Too bad it doesn't really handle dirt pedals all that well.


I have about 30 days to return it. I might just keep it because I could see it saving my bacon in a gig situation. But then again I already bring either a POD Go or a Joyo AC pedal as an emergency backup.
 

jellodog

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Here are unboxing photos. Sounds nice through my 12” Red Fang. Next will try XLR out with cab sim to PA, and some pedals. It does have an effects loop.

The big issue I have right now it’s lots of noise with single coils. Not just hum but a very fast clicking sound that goes away if I use a humbucker. In a live gig it would probably be okay, but awful for recording.
I get that fast clicking sound if I have my cell phone in my pants pocket, sitting behind the guitar and near to the Superblock. I don't suppose it's that for you? Otherwise, it's a fairly quiet unit for me - not as noisy as an average tube amp anyway.
 

chris m.

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Hmmm, maybe it was the cell phone! Thanks for the tip. But I already sent it back today. Once the supply chain woes are over if I ever need one in the future I can always buy one again.
 

Happy Enchilada

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Quilter builds nice stuff. Love my Aviator Cub. It's 50 Watts, and you don't want to be in the same room when it's up to 1/2 power, so I'm betting the Super Block rated @ 25 Watts is more than adequate - especially if you're micing it or running direct into the PA. The age of the Marshall stack and its cousins that require two guys to move is fast departing, and the earth will be ruled by compact, great-sounding SS amps that sound as good at low volumes as they do cranked. 🥳
 

chris m.

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For giggles I plugged my EHX Magnum 44 into a speaker cab and used a Joyo AC tone as a preamp/ tone shaper. The verdict for me is this combo just as good, possibly better than the Quilter . Much, much less single coil noise, too.

The Quilter’s xlr out with cab sim might have been a game changer…. except that it sounded pretty blah to me. About $210 for both vs $249 for the Quilter. But you could also get the American and British Joyos for $40 apiece and have a really wide array of tones available.
 

chris m.

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Posts
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For giggles I plugged my EHX Magnum 44 into a speaker cab and used a Joyo AC tone as a preamp/ tone shaper. The verdict for me is this combo sounds just as good, or actually better than the Quilter . Much, much less single coil noise, too.

The Quilter’s xlr out with cab sim might have been a game changer…. except that it sounded pretty blah to me. About $210 for both vs $249 for the Quilter. But you could also get the American and British Joyos for $40 apiece and have a really wide array of tones available.
 

Jbnaxx

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I picked up my SBUS when they were first released, I have had some time to get accustomed to it's personality.
I did get the weird noise when using the XLR, that has since gone away. probably a cell phone thing as another poster said.
It likes odd speaker/ cab combinations. I have a Jensen C12R that I have never liked in anything...it sounds amazing in a 16 x 21 - 1x12 cab.
The XLR sound is not the same as a cab, but it's not a high dollar IR rig, so no biggie for me. Some EQ adjustments at the board make it usable... but not perfect.
It likes the tone controls turned up, not down.
A J. Rockett The Dude sounds amazing to my ears.
TS type ODs do come off a bit nasal.
It loves Humbuckers.
It is a different beast, but after several months, I'm still loving mine. It is quite different.
 

wiresandwood

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Howdy folks. More of a reader/browser than a forumite...but wanted to register for this.

I excitedly waited for the US version to come back in stock after reading reviews etc. I planned to use it as a backup and to have an option for silent recording late at night through the DI.


I was absolutely disappointed and unimpressed and had it back at fedex for return hours after receiving it (yes, I 'gave it enough time').


I play through a brownface bandmaster (which is the amp they used for working the voice '61'. I watched the youtube video where they a/b-ed the real thing and the quilter...great sales pitch....but as far as I'm concerned it is pure hype.

I've read from tdpri for years as I trust (mainly) the reviews and discussion from folks, and figured I'd chime in here for anyone else out there looking for an honest (and experienced opinion).

I wrote a review for sweetwater that sums it up for me:

"Nope. Not for me. I own the blonde Fender head this is supposed to sound like...and the Quilter doesn't sound like it all. I hoped for this to be a backup, but I'd rather cut a gig short than use this as a back up.

The 65 voicing is okay. This may work for some folks in a pinch. Tweed also misses the mark.

DI is worse than the amp into speaker cab. My old Korg toneworks processor I've had since the 90's sounds better through its line out.

Want to use pedals? Forget it, especially using the DI.

I was really looking forward to this amp and waited a long time for it to come back in stock. I'd been disappointed by the earlier mach series amp, and hoped things had improved. I'm done with quilter." end review


Crap sound, not as loud as any amp (even my old victoria champ 5112) I've used ranging from 5-40 watts tube. DI is utter garbage.

Let's be real: quilters are nothing more than a cheap amp with eq/compressor/limiter/overdrive that are hyped as sounding 'tubey'. Fooled me for a second I guess. I was excited and got carried away by the idea. I'd been thinking hard about the cub and the new mach 100 watter with the multiple voices, but I've learned my lesson.


I'm not anti-solid state. I'm anti-hype. I've played and enjoyed numerous old solid state amps (yamaha, randall, fender, peavey) and would choose any of them over quilter.


That's my experience. I'll be finding alternatives besides quilter.




*edited for clarity
 
Last edited:

chris m.

Doctor of Teleocity
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Posts
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Location
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Howdy folks. More of a reader/browser than a forumite...but wanted to register for this.

I excitedly waited for the US version to come back in stock after reading reviews etc. I planned to use it as a backup and to have an option for silent recording late at night through the DI.


I was absolutely disappointed and unimpressed and had it back at fedex for return hours after receiving it (yes, I 'gave it enough time').


I play through a brownface bandmaster (which is the amp they used for working the voice '61'. I watched the youtube video where they a/b-ed the real thing and the quilter...great sales pitch....but as far as I'm concerned it is pure hype.

I've read from tdpri for years as I trust (mainly) the reviews and discussion from folks, and figured I'd chime in here for anyone else out there looking for an honest (and experienced opinion).

I wrote a review for sweetwater that sums it up for me:

"Nope. Not for me. I own the blonde Fender head this is supposed to sound like...and the Quilter doesn't sound like it all. I hoped for this to be a backup, but I'd rather cut a gig short than use this as a back up.

The 65 voicing is okay. This may work for some folks in a pinch. Tweed also misses the mark.

DI is worse than the amp into speaker cab. My old Korg toneworks processor I've had since the 90's sounds better through its line out.

Want to use pedals? Forget it, especially using the DI.

I was really looking forward to this amp and waited a long time for it to come back in stock. I'd been disappointed by the earlier mach series amp, and hoped things had improved. I'm done with quilter." end review


Crap sound, not as loud as any amp (even my old victoria champ 5112) I've used ranging from 5-40 watts tube. DI is utter garbage.

Let's be real: quilters are nothing more than a cheap amp with eq/compressor/limiter/overdrive that are hyped as sounding 'tubey'. Fooled me for a second I guess. I was excited and got carried away by the idea. I'd been thinking hard about the cub and the new mach 100 watter with the multiple voices, but I've learned my lesson.


I'm not anti-solid state. I'm anti-hype. I've played and enjoyed numerous old solid state amps (yamaha, randall, fender, peavey) and would choose any of them over quilter.


That's my experience. I'll be finding alternatives besides quilter.




*edited for clarity
Pretty much my experience. Very noisy, and construction feels very cheap. Cheap knobs and the pots wiggle in the chassis. I sgree- hype. The DI and headphone outs are atrocious.
 

Jbnaxx

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I wonder if the new batch is not up to the specifications of the first run?…. Everything about mine is top quality.

I am loving mine and getting some great sounds out of it.
 

jellodog

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I wonder if the new batch is not up to the specifications of the first run?…. Everything about mine is top quality.

I am loving mine and getting some great sounds out of it.
Mine is from the first run too and pretty good quality for the money. Sounds great through a Creamback neo, quiet with no hiss or hum and great as a pedal platform. For cleans and ease of use, I prefered it to a Mesa Boogie tube amp, which I sold in the end. Surprised to read that other people have had different experiences. Weird.

Agree that the DI out is nothing special though. I only ever use the Superblock US with a good quality open back cabs and decent speakers. I liked it so much, that I upgraded to a more expensive Quilter amp after that.
 

Jbnaxx

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Mine is from the first run too and pretty good quality for the money. Sounds great through a Creamback neo, quiet with no hiss or hum and great as a pedal platform. For cleans and ease of use, I prefered it to a Mesa Boogie tube amp, which I sold in the end. Surprised to read that other people have had different experiences. Weird.

Agree that the DI out is nothing special though. I only ever use the Superblock US with a good quality open back cabs and decent speakers. I liked it so much, that I upgraded to a more expensive Quilter amp after that.

I have a closed back compact cab with A Celestion TF 0818 speaker in it and it sounds really good. The TF 0818 is the speaker Quilter uses in their cabs.

I agree on the DI out…… It would not bother me if it wasn’t there. I don’t need it.
 

m0b1liz3

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Still no ETA on mine from Prymaxe. I regret not cancelling the order and using the credit earlier. I can't think of any other product I have bought or looking into in the last 2 years where they blamed supply chain issues for a 6 month + delay.
 

Marc Morfei

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I'll throw in my review for the Superblock US as well. It's good. It's very good. It's worth the $275. But it is not as good as a quality tube head. Through headphones it sounds great IMO, and as a headphone amp or recording interface I think it would be perfect. I especially liked the tweed voicing. The gain and sag sound very natural. Really, the best I have ever heard from a SS amp. The blackface voice is good too. I did not care for the brown. Reverb is ok. Volume into a cabinet is reasonable for a 25 watt SS amp. I tried it with 10" and 12" cabs. Very nice, very usable.

But in a side-by-side comparison with my Peavey Classic 20 head, it did not measure up. I know those are totally different amps. But it's what I have on hand. The tweed voice on the Quilter is not far off from the voicing of the Peavey classic. And the Quilter sounds good, make no mistake. But the fullness, richness, and complexity of the tube amp is lacking in the Quilter. And the Peavey is really nothing special, just a mid-level ordinary amp. The Peavey costs twice as much as the Superblock, so it is an unfair comparison, apples and oranges. But if someone is thinking they can replace their tube head with something cheaper, lighter, smaller, and more versatile, I'd have to say this Quilter is not the one.
 

Hoodster

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I had a similar experience with a Quilter 101. I had been pretty happy with it using the surf setting, and then I compared it head to head with a Traynor Darkhorse, which is in the same price and wattage range as your Classic 20. I was actually shocked at the difference. The Quilter sounded dull and lifeless in comparison to the tube amp. Same cabinet, same guitar.
 

chris m.

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Let's face it. When they market something as "US", or "UK", that's just marketing. Sure, they are attempting via design engineering to have it sound in the ballpark of the reference amps, but it really has its own sound. "UK" could be a marketing claim for sounding like Orange, Vox, and Marshall, all British brands, take your pick, with the actual sound being not very close in actuality to any of the 3.
 




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