Victory has unveiled the V4 Kraken pedal-sized guitar amplifier. Assuming the familiar V4 aluminium chassis, the compact Kraken has two channels, with a valve-driven preamp and a 180-watt Class D power section making it a powerful and portable option for high-class guitar tones.
Sharing many of the design features of its predecessor – the quite phenomenal V4 Duchess – with a super-tough but stylish enclosure and controls protected by a raised metal kick-bar. The preamp features one EC900 and a trio of CV4014 valves.
But this also offers something a little different for Victory, with onboard Torpedo cab sim technology from Two Notes Audio Engineering extending the capability of the V4 Kraken. The two companies first announced a collaboration in September 2020, launching a suite of Victory DynIR Virtual Cabinets, and it is great to see their first hardware collaboration hit the market.
Shipping preloaded with six Virtual Cabinet presets designed by Victory endorsee Rabea Massaad, the V4 Kraken allows players to go straight into the PA when playing live – meaning this little cigar box-sized unit is pretty much all you need to built a sound
You can, of course, expand on this fly-rig theme and plug in your pedalboard into the V4 Kraken's series effects loop. Handily, there is a 9V DC power outlet on the back of the amp to serve your pedalboard power supply.
All in there are 10 controls mounted on the top of the unit. There is a six-way selector switch for choosing your cab sim presets, plus a cab sim output volume positioned directly underneath. You have a three-band EQ, two master volumes, two gain controls and digital reverb.
Connect via USB to edit your Virtual Cabinets using Two notes' Torpedo Remote app. One footswitch toggles between the two channels. The first channel, Gain I, is for a more classic British overdrive voicing, while Gain II is a more contemporary, pulling back on the mids a bit and tightening the low end in a fashion that should please metal players.
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While the onboard Two notes tech and the fact that we now have a pedal-format Kraken to play with is undoubtedly the headline event here, let's not overlook the fact that there is now an on/off switch for the fan, which is great news for anyone looking to use the V4 Kraken to record.
Martin Kidd, head designer at Victory Amplification, says the company had been under pressure to add The Kraken to the V4 series.
“After the success of the V4 Duchess Guitar amp, the Victory amps community kept asking ‘Where is a Kraken version?’“ he said. “So here it is! With the V4 Kraken Guitar amp we wanted it to have all the best bits of the range, in a package that you could take with you everywhere!”
The V4 Kraken is available to preorder now, priced £799 / €919 / $999, and it ships on 11 May 2021. See Victory Amplification for more details.