NAMM 2020: If you've ever fancied Victory's acclaimed Duchess tone, but struggled with the entry price, the British amp firm has a solution for you, and we were lucky enough to get a demo from Chris Buck, the man you voted the best blues guitarist of 2019.
At just over half the cost of the full head, and slotting into Victory's range between their brilliant preamp pedals and the V40 Duchess, you can plug the V4 straight into a cab for the series' coveted low-to-medium gain tones.
Duchess V4 is an all-valve preamp, with its own 180-watt class D power section that looks ideal for use at home, in the studio or as a pedal platform amp.
Victory chief designer, Martin Kidd, says “In 2019 we introduced the V4 Pedal Preamps: the world’s first guitar pedal preamps with four valves. They are a fantastic solution for players who want a pro-standard valve preamp/front end to augment their existing amps, or indeed for pedalboards, fly rigs and/or rented amps.
“The new V4 Guitar Amp was the obvious way forward: let’s add a lightweight power section to that all-valve front end. We knew we could design a superb sounding amp that wasn’t compromised by a lack of power, lifeless tone or burdened with endless options that you never use.
"The result is a simple, professional-grade guitar amp that you can take anywhere. The front end takes your drive pedals exactly as you want it to, there’s an effects loop, plus on-board digital reverb and tremolo for ambience."
“What about speaker emulation and IRs?" continues Kidd. "We’ve deliberately left them out. Everyone we talk to seems to prefer their own personal IR solution, whether that’s hardware or software. There are a great many options available and the pace of development in that world is vertical.
"The great news is that V4 The Duchess Guitar Amp will run happily without a speaker load if you just want to use the direct output... or run a speaker cab and the DI however you see fit.
"It’s quite the little box!”
• 180-watt guitar amp
• Three-band EQ
• All-valve preamp
• Reverb & tremolo on board
• Weighs only 1.7kg / 3.75lbs
• Series effects loop
• Balanced line out
• Use with or without a speaker load
• Size: 225(w) x 175(h) x 100mm(d) inc feet & knobs
• Weight: 1.7kg (3.75lbs)
The Victory V4 Duchess has an RRP of £699 / €839 / $799 - for more info head over to Victoryamps.com