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NPD: KOT

Discussion in 'The Stomp Box' started by Luke1026, Mar 2, 2021.

  1. Luke1026

    Luke1026 Tele-Meister

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    Well, it finally arrived!

    I was given notice that I was up for placing an order 1295 days after my initial request.

    I received it 19 days later for a total of 1314 days waiting!

    It's a V4: Boost (yellow) on the left with extra High Gain (Red) on the right. I also ordered it with the three-position toggle OD/Clean/DIST on the face so I don't have to open it every time I want to change it.

    It's Black and Gold - Looks really good!

    So what are my impressions? I just got it today so I haven't spent that much time with it yet, but my initial impressions are two-fold. First, everything works as it should and also sounds quite good. But I have to admit I'm a bit underwhelmed. I'm sure as I spend more time with it I will find all the sweet spots. I suppose with all the hype and all the waiting, my expectations were a bit unrealistic.

    I was expecting a super hi-fi piece of gear that would take my clean guitar signal, enhance it with space and airiness and a bit of silkiness with the boost side, and then add smooth, perfectly harmonized dirt of the finest quality and take it to the heights of distortion bliss. Or something like that. Ok, maybe that's a bit extreme but I do believe that something close to what I just described is attainable - but perhaps not with just one pedal.

    I guess what I did not expect was the midrange hump and added muddiness. Adjusting the tone along with some of its other features did help so it may just require more effort on my part to find something closer to what I was expecting. As I said, I haven't spent that much time with it so I'm sure I will discover many great tones as I experiment more with it.

    I should also mention that so far I've tried it with my Strat and CS 69's. Over the next few days I'll also check it out with my Tele's, G&L CLassic, MJT HH, Strat Pro HHH, and Duesenberg.

    I do like the fact that gain is not too aggressive and when I want more gain I can just add my Durham Sex Drive and/or my EP Booster. I'm sure I'll spend lots of time getting to know it better over the next days and weeks.

    At least the wait is over!

    Addendum: Please continue reading this thread as my impressions change substantially as I'm advised about the internal "Presence" feature!
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2021
  2. Tele-friend

    Tele-friend Tele-Meister

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    Hm... everybody usually say only really positive things about this pedal. Based on what you say which I believe to be an honest opinion, I am not really convinced about it anymore.
    But like you say, maybe you need some more time, to find the sweet spot settings.

    1314 days waiting... wow :eek:
     
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  3. Luke1026

    Luke1026 Tele-Meister

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    Yeah, additional time with it is needed for a more balanced review. I suspect my Strat Pro with 2 Pearly Gates and an SD Duckbucker will probably sound nice and thick with the KOT. I'm still tinkering with a wiring mod so it might be a day or two before I get to check that out.

    Keep in mind that many others have expressed how they think pairing a Zendrive with Timmy or an OCD or a Barber is just as good or better.

    Another pedal that comes to mind that some prefer over the KOT is the King Tone The Duelist OD. Apparently, its' design is kind of similar to the KOT but with some additional features that make it stand out.

    Another point is that the KOT design is approaching 20 years old - mind you that's with various upgrades and newer versions along the way. But many other pedal companies have obviously been doing some serious R&D considering the quality and variety of OD pedals available these days.
     
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  4. Cali Dude

    Cali Dude Tele-Afflicted

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    Great early review. I have read mixed reviews myself. I hope that you find it useful in obtaining your sound. It sounds like you got a good mod, with the switches on the outside. Good luck! I look forward to hearing more about it in a future review.
     
  5. DougM

    DougM Poster Extraordinaire

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    I'm surprised that it has a mid-hump, since it's supposed to be a Bluesbreaker, which doesn't really have one AFAIK. But, doesn't it have internal dip switches to add more tweaks?
     
  6. Luke1026

    Luke1026 Tele-Meister

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    The internal dip switch is what the external toggle replaced.

    I know I described it as a "mid-hump" but I'm not sure that's the best way to explain it. It definitely sounded like the midrange was artificially enhanced compared to my dry signal. In other words, it wasn't uncolored, and it even seemed muddy to me. It took a bit of tweaking to reduce it but I haven't quite eliminated it completely - yet.
     
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  7. Emiel

    Emiel Tele-Meister

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    Both sides have a small internal trimpot to dial in some treble/presence. Try to add some; then you won't need to crank the tone control (which adds midrange past 1:30 o'clock or so).
     
  8. 4pickupguy

    4pickupguy Doctor of Teleocity

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    I would spend some quality time getting to know it. When my notice came up I decided I couldn’t afford it. Now with I had managed to get it.
     
  9. Luke1026

    Luke1026 Tele-Meister

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    This changes everything! - Thank you for the much-needed advice.

    Analog.man describes this trim-pot as a "Treble knob" but "presence" as you described it is much more accurate.

    Both of mine were turned off completely. No wonder I was underwhelmed. I turned them up about half-way and it made a greater difference than I would have ever imagined. The mid-hump was gone and the overall articulation and clarity improved substantially!

    I think I may turn down the gain side "presence" knob just a tad to re-introduce a bit of that midrange that's now almost completely removed.

    This additional feature has literally transformed the sound of my KOT. The "tweakability" is so broad now that I'm sure I can find the tones I was looking for. This is a game-changer!
     
  10. burntfrijoles

    burntfrijoles Poster Extraordinaire

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    I received mine several years ago after a much shorter weight than yours. The thing that impressed me the most about the KOT was that I felt there was an added clarity too the OD tones. However, I was at least somewhat underwhelmed as time went on. Like you, I think the hype makes the pedal hard to live up to one’s expectations. I think that occurs with a lot of pedals. I have a Klon clone made by a “boutique” builder and it’s fantastic but overall I don’t find its tone as fantastic as everyone hypes it.
    On the other hand, as time has went on, I’ve begun to appreciate the KOT more and more for its versatility and the clarity of note expression that I mentioned before.
    Mike at analogman assiduously sources his components and the build quality is awesome.
    I’ve come to the conclusion that “overall“, dirt pedals (other than AIAB models) are widely interchangeable and almost generic within their gain categories.
     
  11. lathoto

    lathoto Tele-Meister

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    I went to the website and validated the 3 year wait and the extraneous sales pitch. It appears there are currently 6 options offered. A midrange boost in an overdrive pedal is either desired or undesired. Some guitarists procure two overdrive pedals, one that boosts the midrange and one that is clean.

    My overdrive pedal is a JHS Bonzai (reference XR version) combined with a JHS Prestige (clean boost) as a buffer at the end of my signal chain. These work together to effectively attenuate high frequencies and project warmth in the midrange as required.

    "My board filled up before I could get a fuzz pedal so consequently things seem/remain less fuzzy."

    https://static1.squarespace.com/sta...b525f60ef9f38ed/1585170037581/Bonsai+copy.pdf
    https://static1.squarespace.com/sta...11d15f1204b29ac648/1607637012239/Prestige.pdf
     
  12. MojoTrwall

    MojoTrwall Tele-Holic

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    There's not a thousand way to build a gain pedal.

    They'll end up being interchangeable, because what's described as Uber extensive R&D as been done.

    Basically you got you gain and clipp section, control over it and tone shapping part.

    In the end you might be able to get with only a few typology and minor tweaks only.
     
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  13. NorthenLights

    NorthenLights Tele-Meister

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    I think there is an important lesson to be learned here. Before buying a rare, fancy and expensive pedal, buy the cheapest clone possible. If you like it, and still feels the original would be cool to own, then buy it. If not, it's safe to assume that the original won't sound dramatically better, and it's simply not for you.
     
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  14. burntfrijoles

    burntfrijoles Poster Extraordinaire

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    Exactly. I can’t remember how many gain/dirt pedals I’ve owned but it’s somewhat embarrassing the dollars wasted. There’s a lot of hype in many pedals. I’ve heard that many of the well known semi-boutique makers actually outsource their manufacture.
    The one thing I’ll say about Analogman is that he supposedly sources and test his components and much of his production is built in-house. That may not make it better.
    In the end I could likely get by with my BD-2, a fuzz and DLS but I have at least 5 other dirt pedals. Why I have no idea!
     
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  15. Guitardvark

    Guitardvark Tele-Afflicted Platinum Supporter

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    1314 Days is equivalent to 3.6 Years. hope you didn't spend all that down time on the toilet.
     
  16. Luke1026

    Luke1026 Tele-Meister

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    I agree. There are probably some relatively minor differences between most dirt pedals but I think they are all generally similar. Having said that, I think a few pedals do stand out above the rest because they have some part of their sound that is distinct from all the others. And I think these are particularly appealing to those players who are looking for that specific tonal character.However, I also agree with another thing you said,
    This is one of the most important aspects of a pedal for me. It's got to be able to retain the sound qualities of the original signal, and it's becoming apparent to me that the KOT is able to do that.
     
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  17. Luke1026

    Luke1026 Tele-Meister

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    The Bonzai has been on my list for a while now. It has so many TS and OD varieties I'm sure there are a few that would sound great. And a Barber Gain Changer or GCX is also on that list.
     
  18. Luke1026

    Luke1026 Tele-Meister

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    Funny you should say that. A good Marshal JCM800 dimed sounds great in a small bathroom - the natural reverb is unbelievable. But it's best with the toilet seat up!
     
  19. MojoTrwall

    MojoTrwall Tele-Holic

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    That could be very much the case for a Sun face where germanium tranny might need more test if you buy them in big batch.

    But regarding a pedal designed like the KOT there's no real sourcing. Some might say the diodes, but a diode is a diode you know it's forward voltage (not sure of the english name) and you know how it clips your boosted signal.

    But there's a thing with analogman, he's not Uber expensive compared to his reputation, in fact he's cheapest new than in second hand, which is shame speculator get more than the active builder.

    I can't imagine how many orders a day he gets too.
     
  20. Guitardvark

    Guitardvark Tele-Afflicted Platinum Supporter

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    ahh the famed tiled bathroom :).. I like mine too
     
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