Prince of Tone is made by the best half of the legendary, and elusive King of Tone pedal. This board will take your clean guitar amp sound, boost it, and add a range of natural tube-sounding drive effects. It’s pretty much the same as half of the original, but with an even higher gain delivery!
It is not possible to write about the Duke of Tone without digging into the King of Tone pedal and the history of Analog.Man. Let’s dive into it.
Most guitar pedal enthusiasts ask this question sooner or later: Why is the King Of Tone pedal so famous? Is it just hype, or is there a solid reason for the success? After all, Analog Man’s King of Tone has gained a reputation as one of the most desirable guitar pedals ever made. The fact is that it has become so popular that I wish you good luck if you are trying to get one. Get ready to waste at least three years on the waiting list!
So it’s this pedal so great? It’s difficult to claim against the general consensus regarding the King of Tone: a brilliant pedal everyone seems to love, and here are some reasons why.
First, there is the man behind the product: Mike Piera of Analog Man. A guy that gained respect amongst many guitarists due to his superior vintage and high-end effects designs that are resolute in their pursuit of tone.
Second, King of Tone is the master of transparency. As you may notice, most guitar pedals color your tone in one way or another. The King achieves a clean guitar and amp tone like no other and lets you focus on parameters of gain and volume without altering your original sound.
Third, the pedal is tweakable and customizable way beyond any typical dual overdrive pedal; it has many different tone tweaking options that make it stand out far above the average pedal. Plus, the circuit consists of two matching but individual overdrive pedals that you can play independently or stack together. The half with the High Gain option is so good that you can make an excellent pedal on its own; that’s our Duke of Tone, and we’ll talk about it later.
Fourth, versatility. Combining different tweaking options with the transparent feature provides the pedal with an unprecedented level of adaptability rarely seen in any other stompbox.
These are four of the main reasons why we think King of Tone is in the place it is. They are not the only ones, and I’m sure many of you have your own opinion on this.
Now, another question arises: Is the Prince of Tone (our Duke) as good as the King? This pedal is basically the same as half of the best side of the King of Tone, with an external MODE switch and some welcoming improvements.
It comes with a higher gain option for you to reach the full range of the GAIN knob, featuring even more drive at the top than a normal gain KOT. Also, the distortion mode is a better version of the original that delivers a louder, more robust distortion sound.
The Duke has three knobs for volume, distortion, and tone, along with the three-way toggle switches and mods. The first setting gives you the definitive King of Tone tube screamer sound; the second mode can work as a superior clean boost on low volume and drive or add a bit of overdrive crunch with things turned up. Finally, the third or distortion mode gives you a bit harder overdrive tone, with additional compression.
In conclusion, this pedal lives up to the expectations or even surpasses them with all those improvements over the original circuit. A more straightforward version of the KOT that we are happy to add to our catalog and we are sure will be welcomed by the DIY community.
For any technical questions regarding this build don’t forget to check out our Facebook Group and our forum at Free Stomp Boxes.
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