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SOLD Doc Lloyd Photon Death Ray Vactrol Special Edition

Discussion in 'For Sale: Effects and Pedals' started by jacoby75, Nov 30, 2020.

  1. jacoby75

    jacoby75 Supporting Member

    Mar 11, 2010
    Coldwater, MI
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Guitars, DR Strings
    United States
    Hey guys,

    Like I always say, "I never thought I'd do this," and yet here we are. I'm getting to the level of gear where anything I part with hurts, and this is no exception. But the reality is my tastes have grown so very expensive and I can't afford to keep it all, so my habitual buying is your gain.

    Up for grabs is a special edition PDRV. To my knowledge, there are only 11 of these in existence, and they are not currently available for purchase. It is similar to the standard PDR, with the exception of a VTL5C3 Vactrol (optocoupler) being used, which imparts a more "vintage" flavor on the overall tone. I know "vintage" is difficult to quantify and describe, and can mean different things to different people, but it really is the best way to describe it, having had the chance to compare the two myself.

    The pedal can run on 9 or 18v. Personally, I prefer both it and the original at 18v, as I feel that it "opens it up" a bit more, and gives a more studio-quality tone, for lack of a better way of describing it.

    Russ "Doc Lloyd" himself described the difference thusly:
    "The old Vactrols have a slightly slower response and longer decay. They are close enough to be used as a drop-in replacement, but different enough to be an interesting mod. I just think it’s fun to be able to incorporate some classic parts that are no longer in production!"

    Here is how I described the difference when I first got the PDRV and compared it to the PDR back in August:
    "I spent about 30-45min going back and forth between the original and vactrol versions tonight. Same settings, different settings, 9v, 18v, etc. There is definitely a difference, but I'm not sure I'm smart enough to adequately quantify what that difference is. I ran my passive jazz into them, then into my Demeter pre and into a headphone amp. I think the best way to describe the difference is by what has already been said by others. The vactrol version sounds more "vintage." Now, don't ask me to explain what that means. It's a subtle difference, but it's a difference. This will probably not be accurate, and somebody smarter than I will likely describe it better. But the vactrol to me sounds just a bit warmer (a bit), a bit rounder, maybe a little spongier. After playing the vactrol for a bit, going back to the original make the original sound a little tighter, and little cleaner. But I have never thought of the original as not being either of those things. It's an inadequate comparison, I know. Essentially, to my ears, the vactrol takes that "tone magic" of the original a bit farther. It has more of that sweet, gooey tone that makes the PDR so special. It's definitely not transparent. They're both tone and flavor enhancers. And you mention the mids of the PDR. I think part of the difference between the two lies in the mids. The mids in the original PDR seem to pop more, whereas they seem a bit more subdued in the vactrol."

    Others have described it as "bigger" and "punchier" than the PDR because the PDRV allows more transients through than the standard version. And the PDRV has the same delicious "Human Ear Sidechain" as the original, which listens to your signal and compresses the lows slightly less, so that your lows do not overly trigger the compression engine and squash your highs disproportionately.

    In Scuba's words:
    "To my ear, I can definitely hear and feel the slightly slower response. Yes it is slight, but it is there. The feel of it is slightly different too. The initial attack is sharper and more defined. Given the choice, I'd take a Photon with a Vactrol inside. Will your audience notice? Probably not. It still has the weight of the original Photon but with just more "openness" to it for lack of a better word. I definitely preferred it with a Jazz bass. I didn't feel as strongly one way or the other when using it with a bass with humbuckers. In reality it is probably more of a feel thing than a highly audible thing, but that's enough for me."

    The pedal is in like-new condition, with the exception of some professionally-applied velcro on the bottom for your pedalboard mounting pleasure, and will come with all of the original goodies shown in the pics.

    I am asking $265 via Paypal, shipped within the Continental US only. I will ship within two business days of receipt of payment. I am not interested in trades at this time, as I am only selling because I need to recoup the cash.

    Get your hands on a limited edition classic optical compressor with the gooey goodness! Thanks for looking.








    nbsipics, kranahan and gh0st42 like this.
  2. nbsipics

    nbsipics The Virtues of Cruising Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 8, 2016
    PM sent
  3. jacoby75

    jacoby75 Supporting Member

    Mar 11, 2010
    Coldwater, MI
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Guitars, DR Strings
    Sold pending payment.
  4. benjobass

    benjobass Supporting Member

    Oct 6, 2001
    NYC Area
    This is such a good compressor. Someone's going to be very happy.
    nbsipics likes this.
  5. nbsipics

    nbsipics The Virtues of Cruising Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 8, 2016
    Maybe the baby is going to stop crying :)
  6. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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