Victory V4 Preamp Pedals - Available Now!
Unveiled at the 2018 Winter NAMM Show, Victory’s long-anticipated V4 Preamp Pedals are now available to order!
Free Delivery in the UK!
Why Is Victory Making Pedals?
Founded in 2013, in Victory’s relatively short history it has established itself as one of the UK's leading amplifier brands. Known for its portable lunchbox-style amp heads, Victory has stuck closely to its signature design ethos with its latest offerings - the V4 Preamp Pedal series.
As the company’s first entries in the competitive pedal market, these compact stompboxes deliver unbridled Victory tones within small, pedalboard-friendly enclosures. With Victory observing the recent changes in the industry, the company noticed that many guitarists are turning to preamp pedals to power their rigs, so that they can have their base tones quite literally at their feet!
That’s exactly what the V4 Preamp pedals were designed for, with Victory taking the core sounds of its most popular amp head designs and squeezing them into these smaller units. With the versatile Countess, the fire-breathing Kraken and the Plexi-style Sheriff, guitarists of all styles have been accommodated for. Let’s take a more in-depth look at their features and specs…
The Victory V4 Design
With fully-analogue circuitry, Victory has fitted its V4 stompboxes with genuine valves, to ensure that they convincingly emulate their full-fledged counterparts. Powered by three CV4014 valves and a single EC900, these pedals have that unmistakable tube amp feel and character. Enclosed within steel chassis', the V4’s are very robust and can protect their delicate valves.
Boasting two channels/modes, in conjunction with an amp you can essentially create a 3-channel monster with a V4 - for clean, rhythm and lead sounds. You can also control the gain (Vol 1 & 2) and volume (Master 1 & 2) of each of these modes, allowing you to set one of them louder for a solo boost.
Featuring 3-band EQ sections, these stompboxes also sport brightness switches for further tailoring of their top-end frequencies. This means that if you use one of these pedals in conjunction with a dark-sounding amplifier, you can compensate thanks to this thoughtful appointment.
‘Standalone’ & ‘Amp Through’ Modes
At the rear of the Victory V4 Preamp pedal’s enclosures, there are multiple inputs/ouputs that enable different routing possibilities. Arguably the most noteworthy aspect of the V4 design, you can use these units in two distinctive ways.
Standalone - The most simple method of setting up a V4 Preamp pedal is to plug it directly into the front-end of your amp. This is exactly the same manner that a conventional overdrive unit is set up, which Victory refer to as 'Standalone Mode'.
Amp Through - While you can attain excellent tones that way, routing it through your existing amplifiers's effects loop section will garner better results. By bypassing your amp's preamp section, you can connect a V4 straight to the power section via the effects loop return. When the pedal is disengaged you’re basically using your amp as normal, but when you turn the pedal on you will bypass your amp’s preamp. This will give your amplifier an almost entirely new voice, character and feel, transforming the sound of your rig as a whole. This is referred to as ‘Amp Through Mode’.
If you wish to learn any more details about the design of a Victory V4 Preamp pedal, check out the FAQ section to have any unanswered questions - answered! And for a taste of what the Victory V4 Preamp pedals sound like in action, check out our video on Andertons TV with Chappers and The Captain:
What’s best: 'Amp Through' or 'Standalone Mode'?
If you’re using it with a guitar amp, you’ll get optimum results using ‘Amp Through Mode’ in our opinion because you still have the option of using your own amp exactly as normal. However...
What if my amp doesn’t have an effects loop?
You can run the V4 Pedal Preamp straight into the front of any amp in ‘Standalone Mode’ though some more extreme settings of EQ on both amp and pedal may be required.
To hear the pedal in its most ‘natural’ state, we find higher headroom, cleaner amps work best. Nevertheless, you may very well love it slamming the front of your overdriven amp too. Please try it all because the ‘best’ setting is the one you like most!
Can using a separate valve preamp like this damage my amplifier?
No, not at all! Just be sure to make sure of all the usual stuff: speaker is plugged in and you ALWAYS set the masters to zero before turning on. There can be some serious volume going here, so please take care.
If I’m running the V4 Series Pedal Preamp into the FX loop return, does that mean I can’t use the front end of my amp as well?
‘Amp Through Mode’ is a four-cable connection method. When the pedal is on, you’re bypassing the front of your amp. When the pedal is turned off your amp’s front end works entirely as normal. The only thing you can’t do in ‘Amp Through Mode’ is hit the front end of your amp with the V4. If you want to do that, please use ‘Standalone Mode’.
Can I still use my amp’s FX loop for other effects if I’m using a Victory V4 Series Pedal Preamp?
Absolutely! Just treat it exactly as you would your own amp’s preamp. You may want to run your delays and reverbs after the V4 Pedal Preamps in your amp’s loop. You may want to run other overdrive pedals and boosts wherever you normally run them: between your guitar and the Pedal Preamp or – less common – in the loop of the amp. Either works just fine.
Will my reverbs and delays in the loop still work with the V4 pedal turned on... and off?
Yep. You’re using your amp exactly as normal with the V4 pedal turned off in ‘Amp Through Mode’. Your reverbs and delays work whether it’s on or off.
What is the current draw: will the V4 Series Pedal Preamps run off my DC Brick?
Highly unlikely – remember there are four valves in there running at proper plate voltage. That requires some serious juice. You need 12V DC and a minimum of 800mA. Each V4 Series Pedal Preamp comes with an included power supply.
Some of the settings of the ‘Bright Switch’ are extremely sharp/dull. Is that normal?
Yes it is, and it depends entirely on your amp. Effects loops vary drastically from amp to amp depending on how the loop and the power stage of the amp are configured. In fact you won’t believe how different they can be... so we included the three-position ‘Bright’ switch exactly for that reason. There will be one setting that is optimum for your amp. There’s no best, no worst – just use the one that sounds and feels best to you, and don’t worry if one of the others sounds broken!
Can I change the valves?
The valves comprise 1 x EC900 triode and 3 x CV4014 pentode. Please replace only with valves of the same type... if you ever need to. Preamp valves tend to have a much greater life expectancy than power valves – we estimate the CV4014s to have around 10,000 hours – so regular valve changes will not be necessary. We know of guitar amps from the 1950s still running the same preamp valves!
However, if something should go awry, replacements are available from www.victorystore.co.uk among others. Please note: they are NOT swappable with normal dual-triode types (12AX7/ECC83 etc). Full instructions for valve changes are in the full pedal manual (this is not it), which also includes the relevant safety instructions and warnings. Please note that end-user work/maintenance on electrical goods is forbidden by law in certain countries.
Do the valves need biasing?
They are self biasing so require no bias adjustment.
Can I really not use different valves?
12AX7/ECC83 dual triodes and their equivalents are NOT usable in the V4 Series Pedal Preamps.There are equivalents for the EC900 and CV4014, however please be aware that any damage caused by installing other valves other than the specified type will NOT be covered by your warranty. The V4 Series Pedal Preamps have been designed around 1 x EC900 and 3 x CV4014 and we strongly urge you to stick to direct replacements for those. Please also be aware that the EC900 and CV4014 are NOT interchangeable.