Read the full article
This article was originally published in issue #59
To read the article in its entirety, view the digital magazine
There is a huge amount of bass in this amplifier, so as you turn up the master volume you’ll find yourself needing to dial the bass back quite dramatically.
Cool vintage styling Great tones and flexibility
Good luck finding anything
Part of Victory's Heritage Series and evolved from the brand's award-winning V40 The Duchess head, the V40 Deluxe is a 2 x 6L6-powered all-valve amp for classic American cleans through to ’60s British drive, all from one versatile channel. High- and low-power modes, a hardbypassable series effects loop, plus footswitchable valve-driven tremolo and spring reverb, the V40 Deluxe appears to have it all, but just how good is it? Here is Phil Short to tell us more.
Victory amplifiers have quickly made themselves a household name in the guitar playing community, offering a wide range of stunning amplifiers that boast pro-level features, durability and tones that easily rival some of the biggest names in boutique amplifier design, but at a sensible price point!
In this issue, we’re taking a look at a stunning offering from Victory, the V40 Deluxe. Born from their award-winning V40 The Duchess lunchbox head, the Deluxe model boasts some extra features like the valve driven spring reverb and tremolo.
Voicing wise, it’s somewhat different to the original V40 and isn’t merely the same amp in a new box with some added extras. If you could describe the V40 The Duchess as transatlantic, then you could describe the Deluxe version as being more Californian, with more of a familiar fender style type of clean sound, with more presence and sparkle than it’s little brother.
Features wise it boasts two 6L6 power amp tubes, 2 x 12AX7 and 2 x 12AT7 in the preamp section. There is valve driven tremolo, valve driven spring reverb, 3 band EQ, 2 voice modes and a mid kick toggle switch. Not only that but you also get an effects loop, a low power mode which will run the amp at 7 watts as opposed to 42 watts and a rugged dual button foot switch to control your reverb and tremolo effects.
Voice 1 is the classic mid scooped, high headroom fender style sound, but with Victory’s own brand of tonal goodness. Loads of bottom end and sparkling highs, you can get some great, spanky clean funk tones. Voice one works especially well with tube screamer style overdrive pedals that push out the midrange a little more, achieving some fantastic vintage style tones.
Winding up the volume control starts to push the pre-amp circuit into mild break up to flat out overdrive. The wonderful thing about this volume control is that you can really fine tune where you want the break up to happen, and you can adjust it depending on how powerful your pickups are. Different overdrive pedals also react slightly differently when the amp is clean, breaking up or overdriven, so you can really sculpt and fine-tune the perfect sweet spot for your own style and sound. The master volume allows you plenty of headroom, winding the master up to full will allow you to treat the amp like an old school non-master volume amp should you want tonnes of dynamic headroom.
Voice 2 takes us more into Marshally territory, with more low midrange thunk, the tone is thick and juicy. Amp in a box style pedals sound thick and huge, and voice two removes some of the top end sparkle that can make these sorts of dirt boxes sound fizzy and harsh.
There is a huge amount of bass in this amplifier, so as you turn up the master volume you’ll find yourself needing to dial the bass back quite dramatically. The advantage of having so much low end on tap though is that for very large and bright sounding rooms, you can bring back in the bottom end punch that often gets lost in those sorts of venues.
The mid-kick switch is a stroke of genius. Engage the mid kick for more upper midrange presence to help you cut through a dense live mix. When the amp is overdriving, engaging this toggle switch will allow the amp to saturate even further, a lot of fun when using a classic dual hum-bucker style guitar!
Overall, this is a serious, pro-level amplifier and you’ll be hard pressed to find anything this good at this price point. A fantastic amplifier from Victory.
42 Watts high power / 7 watts low power
2 x 12AX7, 2 x 12AT7, 2 x 6L6
Footswitchable spring reverb with tone control