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Al Krow

Valeton OC-10 (alternative to the Boss OC-2?)

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Arrived this morning. First impressions: very compact - it has the footprint of a COG T16 and solidly built.

Tracks down low as well as well as any octaver I've come across (see response to Dood's post below). It delivers the "classic OC-2 sound" as well as if not better than the COG 16 and I think it's pretty close to the 'real thing' (sufficient for that particular itch of mine to have been scratched) - although I'll leave my fellow BC'ers with OC-2s to comment on whether they agree or not.

Costs around £59 new (Gear4Music) vs £140 for a COG T16 or £80 for s/h Boss OC-2 and it's considerably smaller than the OC-2. Seems a very good value option to me and I love the small form factor; I can't see myself going back to a T16 or wanting to get an OC-2.

Valeton OC-10.JPG

It's analogue and has negligible latency and smooth tracking. I put it through its paces and you'll be able to hear for yourself how it sounds:

1. Clean by-pass

2. "Blend" - Clean 10, Oct1 10, Oct2 5. I really liked this. For me it's my classic octave down sound and I can very much see me using this setting for live music (I slightly prefer this to the best I was able to get from my COG T16 v2).

3. "Classic OC2" - Clean 0, Oct1 10, Oct2 0

4. "Sub" - Clean 0, Oct1 0, Oct2 10. Just like the Boss OC2 the volume is not as high on this as I'd like on just the Oct2 setting. But that's perhaps a good thing as I'd maybe find my speakers blowing if it was! Besides, maybe this is just normal physics / our hearing, in that our ears are attuned less to the very low end and consequently for the low end to match volume we 'hear' of higher frequencies requires a significant increase in power.

5. Combined low - Clean 0, Octs 1 & 2 10

ValetonOC10 - clean.WAV

ValetonOC10 - blend.WAV

ValetonOC10 - Oct 1.WAV

ValetonOC10 - Oct 2.WAV

ValetonOC10 - Oct 1 & 2.WAV

Edited by Al Krow
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Great review! Love the sounds too, really 'organic'. What's the lowest note it tracks without complaining?

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The biggest issue with the OC-2 was that Oct1 up full whack was not quite loud enough for many. Are you finding you have to max the volume of the octave, or are you finding the sweet spot around noon like I am on the Octabvre?

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18 hours ago, dood said:

Great review! Love the sounds too, really 'organic'. What's the lowest note it tracks without complaining?

Thanks Dood!

Yes the 'organic' nature is a really pleasant surprise and, combined with its tiny form factor, I suspect is going to make this a keeper.

In terms of tracking, well I'm feeling a little shell shocked! Had to repeat several times to make sure I wasn't hearing things / it wasn't just a one-off fluke (and have needed to update my review comments above). I swapped from a 4 string Ibby SR1800 to a 5 String Yamaha BBNE2 for this test, as we all know that octavers don't like open strings.  Didn't happen on the recording but on some of the plays it doesn't like / glitches on the B (7th fret on the E string) but then was fine going lower all the way down to the C BELOW LOW E (!!) on the bottom B string. How on earth is a £60 pedal doing that?!! Anyway have a listen for yourselves:

Valeton OC10 - low tracking.WAV

Setting: Clean 10, Oct1 10, Oct2 0

Edited by Al Krow

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1 hour ago, dannybuoy said:

The biggest issue with the OC-2 was that Oct1 up full whack was not quite loud enough for many. Are you finding you have to max the volume of the octave, or are you finding the sweet spot around noon like I am on the Octabvre?

This seems to be very much modelled on the OC-2 in that regard! 

To match the volume on clean bypass, the 'direct level' (= 'clean blend') needs to be maxed out. With the clean set at nil, the Oct1 and the Oct2 are not as loud even when maxed (have a listen to the 3rd and 4th clips in the OP).

Edited by Al Krow

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13 minutes ago, Al Krow said:

Thanks Dood!

Yes the 'organic' nature is a really pleasant surprise and, combined with its tiny form factor, I suspect is going to make this a keeper.

In terms of tracking, well I'm feeling a little shell shocked! Had to repeat several times to make sure I wasn't hearing things / it was just a one off fluke (and have needed to update my review comments above). I swapped from a 4 string Ibby SR1800 to a 5 String Yamaha BBNE2 for this test, as we all know that octavers don't like open strings.  Didn't happen on the recording but on some of the plays it doesn't like / glitches on the B (7th fret on the E string) but then was fine going lower all the way down to the C BELOW LOW E (!!) on the bottom B string. How on earth is a £60 pedal doing that?!! Anyway have a listen for yourselves:

Valeton OC10 - low tracking.WAV

Thank you so much for taking the time to do the recording. Wow, that really is impressive! 

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On 09/08/2018 at 14:33, dannybuoy said:

The biggest issue with the OC-2 was that Oct1 up full whack was not quite loud enough for many. Are you finding you have to max the volume of the octave, or are you finding the sweet spot around noon like I am on the Octabvre?

I recently picked up a Keeley Bassist as a capable Limiter to act as final "sentry" on my pedal board, primarily for speaker protection against synth / filter / slap signal spikes - actually following a recommendation from you on another thread as it happens! :) 

One rather nice side effect of getting the Keeley is the gain control, which is very easy to adjust on the fly and will be particularly useful in providing additional volume from the Oct1 on the Valeton OC-10 (and the same for any OC-2 users I presume) when needed, and also in cutting the output on some of the more sensitive pedals e.g. the Bananana Matryoshka.

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just to add (as the person who sold @AlKrow the Keeley Limiter) that:

a) I've an OC10 too and it is wonderful. Totally agree that it nails OC2 tone and tracks excellently

b) don't want to mess with your pedal board layout too much ... but ...  if you put the limiter in front of the OC10 it makes for amazing sustained octave sounds that get very funky :)

 

 

Enjoy!

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On 03/09/2018 at 14:40, funkydoug said:

b) don't want to mess with your pedal board layout too much ... but ...  if you put the limiter in front of the OC10 it makes for amazing sustained octave sounds that get very funky :)

Enjoy!

Thanks very much for sharing that. 

I think word on the Valeton as a deserving spiritual successor to the OC2 is starting to get out! :) 

What settings would you be using on the Keeley Bassist in conjunction with the Valeton?

I've got mine set in 'limiter mode' at the end of the chain (with the threshold when compression kicks-in set fairly high and the compression itself set to squash / limit with a high ratio). I'm guessing yours would be different in terms of getting your  'amazing sustained octave sounds' and I suspect that @Japhet who also has both the Valeton and the Keeley would also be interested to get your thoughts on this.

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Yeah Oc10 is a great little thing. 

I wasn't too fussy about keeley settings. It went directly in front of the Oc10 with ratio at somewhere near noon, and threshold the same. You can tweak it forever but one of the great things about the keeley limiter is that it's so easy to dial in a great sound. 

This was with a jazz bass with hot but passive pickups. 

 

Have fun:) 

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I'd be interested to test this out against an OC-2, considering the Octabvre sounds mildly different to my ears (although very close of course), I expect this to as well, although would you hear that in a band mix, probably not.
This will also track in exactly the same way as the T16 and the OC2 I expect, I highly doubt Valeton has put any work into the pedal save actually fitting it into the box. I've consistently tried to tell people that tracking is largely down to your technique and the setup/tone of your bass. You feed an analogue octave a buzzy, low sustain and thin sounding note, it won't track very well. You feed it a phat, round and sustaining note, it will track perfectly fine, and below A as well. I've been at bass bashes and demonstrated OC2's tracking a low E before.

I'm absolutely sure that this is great for the money, and pedals like this should exist for people who can't afford 'boutique' pedals. But assuming the funds were available, and you weren't interested in vintage OC2s, I would much prefer to have a T16, to support and invest in a UK business and lovely lad who puts out consistently impressive and quality work.

I'm still waiting for Boss to release an OC-2W though, I will be so happy if/when they do haha. 

Thanks for the review though, analogue octaves are brilliant! :)

Si

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On 04/09/2018 at 22:48, Al Krow said:

I think word on the Valeton as a deserving spiritual successor to the OC2 is starting to get out! :) 

Everyone ignored my heads-up about it last year. 😥 

It's cool though guys, just club together to buy me a little OC-10 to play with, that's all I need to take the edge off the PTSD! 😄

 

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5 minutes ago, Jus Lukin said:

Everyone ignored my heads-up about it last year. 😥 

It's cool though guys, just club together to buy me a little OC-10 to play with, that's all I need to take the edge off the PTSD! 😄

 

Nice thing about the Valeton is that you'll be able to fund it from your recent Markbass sales and have so much change left over you won't be entirely sure what to do with it.

Spotting something from afar and actually taking the plunge are two very different endeavours 😛

Or alternatively you could just move on your aging and bulky OC2 and take up less space on your pedal board (and again still have change in your pocket) 😂

@Sibob you can't buy SEVEN OC2s and then make a point about being desirous of supporting UK manufacturers?!! 😄 My pleasure re. posting the review.

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12 minutes ago, Al Krow said:

 

@Sibob you can't buy SEVEN OC2s and then make a point about being desirous of supporting UK manufacturers?!! 😄 My pleasure re. posting the review.

Haha, but I have bought plenty from COG, including a T16 ;)

Si

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3 hours ago, Sibob said:

Haha, but I have bought plenty from COG, including a T16 ;)

Si

Indeed and I've owned two T16s (and a T65) myself, too. Just the Valeton left on my board...

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On 17/09/2018 at 11:10, Dood said:

ok, so I caved @Al Krow. The Valeton OC-10 arrived today. Hoping to get a chance to play with it later on. I love that it comes with a precept piece of velcro for pedal boards. THAT is a huge bonus.

Not sure how I missed this previous comment from you monsieur le Dood? Probably 'cos you'd hidden it on an "octave up" thread (why?? The Valeton OC-10 doesn't do octave up. Hmmm...I think we may need to go back and re-examine the validity of some of your reviews! ...Just kidding 😂) So I've taken the liberty of dragging it across to this one.

Anyway how are you finding it?

@Japhet has got the Valeton bit between his teeth now and started to move on to other pedals by them, which he's also loving. But I'll leave him to spill the beans on that...

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10 hours ago, Al Krow said:

Not sure how I missed this previous comment from you monsieur le Dood? Probably 'cos you'd hidden it on an "octave up" thread (why?? The Valeton OC-10 doesn't do octave up. Hmmm...I think we may need to go back and re-examine the validity of some of your reviews! ...Just kidding 😂) So I've taken the liberty of dragging it across to this one.

Anyway how are you finding it?

@Japhet has got the Valeton bit between his teeth now and started to move on to other pedals by them, which he's also loving. But I'll leave him to spill the beans on that...

Ha ha! I blame the medication 😂 I’ve no idea how I managed to post in the wrong thread! Thank you for cross linking ;o)

In all honesty I grabbed it in a moment of madness. I don’t really need it, but I was super curious. I’ve not had a great deal of time to play with it yet, but yes I agree it does a really good OC2 impression though mine doesn’t seem to track as closely as your recorded examples!  No problem though I think it will go low enough for certain stuff!

 

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On 06/09/2018 at 16:47, Al Krow said:

Indeed and I've owned two T16s (and a T65) myself, too. Just the Valeton left on my board...

Making some bold “implicit” statements here ;). I also bought the Valeton for my small board, it is good (very very good given the price point) but not COG good. It is noisy in comparison and the Oct2 doesn’t really work well. Overall, and given the price, a very good pedal and I agree with the praise it gets. But it is not a COG (or OC2 killer) at least imo.

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28 minutes ago, HazBeen said:

But it is not a COG (or OC2 killer) at least imo.

There will be plenty of COG (and OC2) owners happy to hear you say that, and you have very probably single-handedly underpinned the used COG (and OC2) market from collapsing as folk start to realise they can get something that does that OC2 sound really rather well in smaller form factor and for a smaller price.

8 hours ago, Dood said:

Ha ha! I blame the medication 😂 I’ve no idea how I managed to post in the wrong thread! Thank you for cross linking ;o)

In all honesty I grabbed it in a moment of madness. I don’t really need it, but I was super curious. I’ve not had a great deal of time to play with it yet, but yes I agree it does a really good OC2 impression though mine doesn’t seem to track as closely as your recorded examples!  No problem though I think it will go low enough for certain stuff!

Glad you agree that the Valeton does indeed do a really good OC2 impression. That's confirmation enough for me :) 

I think the very low tracking I got may have been a combination of the particular bass and technique I was using and making sure I was avoiding that glitchy 5th fret - is that just caused by it being particularly harmonically rich which makes it more difficult for an octaver to lock on? But perhaps the more important point is that hopefully it tracks just as well as the OC2 it's seeking to clone, which is what I hope you found?

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6 minutes ago, Al Krow said:

There will be plenty of COG (and OC2) owners happy to hear you say that, and you have very probably single-handedly underpinned the used COG (and OC2) market from collapsing as folk start to realise they can get something that does that OC2 sound really rather well in smaller form factor and for a smaller price.

Glad you agree that the Valeton does indeed do a really good OC2 impression. That's confirmation enough for me :) 

I think the very low tracking I got may have been a combination of the particular bass and technique I was using and making sure I was avoiding that glitchy 5th fret - is that just caused by it being particularly harmonically rich which makes it more difficult for an octaver to lock on? But perhaps the more important point is that hopefully it tracks just as well as the OC2 it's seeking to clone, which is what I hope you found?

Let’s see how long it lasts, OC2’s have proven they can take 30 years of use smiling. I certainly have one that I have battered for 25 years or more. Time will tell if the smaller investment means less longevity. Too early to call it..... but I absolutely agree that you get to OC2 territory at a really good price point.

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On 09/08/2018 at 15:45, Al Krow said:

Thanks Dood!

Yes the 'organic' nature is a really pleasant surprise and, combined with its tiny form factor, I suspect is going to make this a keeper.

In terms of tracking, well I'm feeling a little shell shocked! Had to repeat several times to make sure I wasn't hearing things / it wasn't just a one-off fluke (and have needed to update my review comments above). I swapped from a 4 string Ibby SR1800 to a 5 String Yamaha BBNE2 for this test, as we all know that octavers don't like open strings.  Didn't happen on the recording but on some of the plays it doesn't like / glitches on the B (7th fret on the E string) but then was fine going lower all the way down to the C BELOW LOW E (!!) on the bottom B string. How on earth is a £60 pedal doing that?!! Anyway have a listen for yourselves:

Valeton OC10 - low tracking.WAV

Setting: Clean 10, Oct1 10, Oct2 0

Low tracking added as an mp3 file...

Valeton OC10 - low tracking (mp3).mp3

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Reviving this thread -

What’s the longer term review on the OC10 - is anyone still using one? 

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2 hours ago, Drax said:

Reviving this thread -

What’s the longer term review on the OC10 - is anyone still using one? 

 

well, mine hasn't changed in sound or anything, so I like it just as much as when I bought it :D

 

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20 minutes ago, mcnach said:

 

well, mine hasn't changed in sound or anything, so I like it just as much as when I bought it :D

 

Haha. If you like old gear the same today as the day you bought it you’re a rare breed 😃

Encouraging you still like it, I’ll take that as a positive

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2 minutes ago, Drax said:

Haha. If you like old gear the same today as the day you bought it you’re a rare breed 😃

Encouraging you still like it, I’ll take that as a positive

 

Nah, I know what you mean... initial glowing reviews often turn a lot less enthusiastic after a while. :)

The thing with the OC-10 is... it's an effect I was already very familiar with, so unless it physically breaks I'll still like it. Tiny knobs that are difficult to see exactly where they're set to in low light situations, but other than that it's a pretty nice octaver if you want that dirty synthy type of octaver, like an OC-2.

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