It’s no secret that British amps are coveted for their glorious tones. And while there are many out there that can deliver this sound, the Quilter Superblock UK may just be one of the best. Boasting a wealth of features in a small and portable package, this amp is perfect for players who love blues, classic rock, and all things vintage. If you’re looking to add some serious punch to your tone, the Quilter Superblock UK should definitely be at the top of your list.
TL; DR – Video Demo
Note: The track at the beginning of the video is a song I wrote exclusively using the Superblock UK to showcase a range of guitar tones, titled “Tides”.
For those interested, there are also free guitar tabs available for the track on Gumroad.
Huge Tone. Small Size.
The Quilter Superblock UK surprised me with how huge the tone can get in such a small little package. If I remember correctly, the unit comes in at a little under 2 lbs., which is gnarly insane when you think about the fact that it’s also a 25-watt amp when you using the included power supply, or a 1-watt amp when you use the 9 Volt DC plug.
It has 3 voicings from iconic British amps, the ’79 Marshall JMP, and the Normal & Top Boost channels from an AC30. No bigggg dealllll. Those British tones are huge shoes to fill…but the Superblock UK does those models so effortlessly. The best part is that each amp voicing feels rad to play!
The Quilter Superblock UK is Ready for the Stage and the Studio
The on-board cab sim options and FRFR output makes this a suh-weet little pedal that can handle live and studio duties well. Quilter includes a BRT cab which if I remember correctly is modeled after a vintage Marshall 4×12 and a Norm cab, modeled after a Vox cab.
For those that want to pair their Superblock UK with their favorite third-party cabs, the FRFR option is ready at the flip of a switch. The FRFR, which is a flat eq, no cab modeling, is an excellent option to have in the studio to be able to layer the same amp with different cabs, or mix and match cabs that normally wouldn’t be possible. For live playing this also comes in handy when players want to use their cab impulse pedals or multi-effect units with cab modeling such as the HX Stomp, the Joyo Cab Box, or the TC Electronic Impulse Loader for more tonal options.
The included effects (reverb and limiter) are pretty gnarly. I’ve never seen a limiter built into an amp and honestly never saw a point until I played a Quilter. “Ohhhhhhhh thaaattttt’s why. Dassa kinda coo!”
I love the simplicity of the one-knob controls for the effects. I’m a fan of having knobs to tweak effects, but I don’t want to get lost in tone tweaking land, so I want to be able to find something fairly quickly and get back to playing, and the Super block UK delivers this in spades.
The reverb can range from a slight slapback to a larger wash, not exactly a huge washy reverb like U2 or like the reverb you hear on worship records, but it sits at a happy medium. The reverb took me a bit to get used to, but after hitting a sweet spot, the reverb became an “always on” feature.
The limiter is awesome for cleaner or edge of breakup parts, really tightens the dynamics of the amp, and adds sustain to the tone.
The Superblock UK ALSO has an effects loop, soooooo if you want to and add your favorite pedals you can totally do so. (Thumbs up!)
It Feels Like an Amp!
Straight up, dude. I’m noticing this trend on gear reviews blogs and videos everywhere where they have to drop the phrase, “Amp-like”. At this point it just feels like a train to hop on.
BUT MAN THIS THING IS AMP-LIKE!
The drive rolls off so nice when you roll off the volume, hit it with different pick attacks/dynamics, and it takes overdrive and boost pedals very well!
I put a Tubescreamer in front and it reacted to the pedal sooo well and continued to do so whenever I’d adjust the settings on the Tubescreamer.
For the lead parts of the song in the demo video, I boosted the front end of the pedal with a Jackson Audio Golden Boy with moderate amount of gain and it felt like the amp went from amazing gain, to amazing cascades of gain. It also took clean boosts well while retaining my dynamics. Seriously, watch the video as I go through a range of tones, even the JMP cleans up to a sweet breakup,and it was rad to hear the amp voicings stay musical when driven and boosted.
This pedal is all vintage British guitar tone, baby.
The Future of the Superblock UK
This pedal has lots of utility:
- It’s small: This thing eassssily fits in backpack.
- It’s light: We can all agree that 1.5 lbs. Is significantly less than a Marshall JMP, right?
- And the most important: It’s got tone!
I mean… this alone is enough to predict that we’ll be seeing more of these on pedalboards and traveling rigs.
I do, however, wish it was available as a stompbox.
It’d be rad to see the Superblock UK outfitted with footswitches to change channels between the JMP, AC 30 Norm, and AC 30 Top Boost voicings, to control the reverb, FX loop, and limiter, maybe even include a boost function so players can throw this in a bag as a fly/travel rig.
I’m also kinda hoping that Quilter would be open to making the Superblock a series of pedals and doing a range of amps voicings in this pedal style.
I know they have a Superblock US that has some Fender-styled voicings, but how cool would it be to have modern high gain amps in this format?
For example, imagine having the sounds of a 5153, Archon, and a Revv Generator in this format? Imagine having a pedal that could sound like the Mark 2, Mark 4, and the 5? What about a pedal that has the sounds like a JPM, Plexi, and a JCM? Or a Mesa Rectifier and a Triple Crown? Or a Dumble Overdrive Special and a Steel String Singer?
Heck, even having themed Superblocks might be rad to see. Imagine a Superblock Metal with the sounds of a JCM, Mesa, and a Diezel. I don’t know, at this point, I’m legit just running off with ideas.
The Quilter Superblock UK is Super Rad
The Quilter Superblock UK is a solid piece of gear that has lots of on-board options for tone, and when used with the the FRFR output to your DAW or a cab modeling pedal it can be expanded even more with third party cabs. The onboard reverb and FX loop make this pedal a complete package that fits in a backpack.
I’m stoked to see where Quilter takes these very capable pedals.
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YouTube: Cain Kong
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