Lovetone returns!

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by dvlmusic, Jul 15, 2015.

  1. dvlmusic


    Jul 24, 2010
    Alameda, CA
    I can't believe I just got this in my inbox:


    As you are probably aware Lovetone manufacture has been on hold for some time. We have been evaluating the best options for going forward as, despite continuing demand, making the pedals in their original formats does not fit in with our long term plans. The office has consequently been closed for certain periods so if you have tried to contact us and not received a reply please accept our apologies. After much head scratching we have decided that our immediate priority is to concentrate on developing new ideas while at the same time making them available in limited numbers in the form of an esoteric new product line.


    Our new range will be hand assembled and made to order in very small quantities. We are consequently eliminating all non essentials that would make the costs prohibitive and focussing fully on sound and build quality. There will be no fancy custom enclosures (all units will be housed in standard pre painted die cast enclosures), no graphics /idents (a laminated reference guide will be provided where necessary) and no bespoke packaging. Despite this the range as a whole will still have the distinctive Lovetone look. The sounds of course will speak for themselves!

    All moving parts will be hand wired in time honoured vintage style thus isolating the circuit board(s) from mechanical stresses. This is obviously much more labour intensive but offers proven long term benefits in terms of reliability and ease of maintenance. In the event that a moving part fails, or as is more often the case suffers physical damage, it can be quickly and easily replaced with an equivalent (and not necessarily identical part) by a qualified tech. In the unlikely event that an electronic fault develops the (relatively smaller) boards themselves can easily be replaced if necessary, thus virtually eliminating the need for the whole unit to be shipped back to us.


    For our first product we have taken the mighty Cheese and added absurdly powerful tone boosting/shaping in the form of multiple adapted static (i.e. non enveloping) Meatball filters. On more benign settings it acts like a souped up, more flexible, Big Cheese, but cranking it takes it into unprecedented new dimensions of supercharged fuzztone distortion.

    Welcome to the squelchtastic world of the Cheeseball™!!

    The Big Cheese is widely acknowledged to be one of the most musical, responsive and harmonically rich fuzzes ever made and is in many people's all time top 5 list. Its special affinity with the renowned Meatball filter has been well proven over the years and combined in this way they provide a veritable tone generating powerhouse.

    The Cheeseball™ consists of a flexible system of three elements, each of which can be used independently or in combination:


    Although developed for use with the Big Cheese/Cheese Source it has numerous potential applications as a stand alone unit. It is pretty rammed for its size and we have decided to save on extra cost and weight (and additional switching contacts) by leaving out the footswitches as they are only really necessary for live use (please see below).


    A Big Cheese minus tone control (but with true bypass footswitch and LED). This is the same as having the original pedal on tone bypass (but with the "gated" sound accessible on its own switch). It could have been included in F but we have kept it separate to avoid duplication as the majority of existing Lovetone customers already have a Big Cheese or Cheese Source.
    The unit can used on its own (or in front of a Brown Source thus utilising its own tonal options), or inserted directly into the loop of F (which is designed to take care of all the tone shaping) or be connected to F via Sbelow.


    A true bypass/switching/routing box (with LEDs) for stage use.

    F/ 400 GBP (approx. 620 USD)
    Z/ 220 GBP (approx. 340 USD)
    S/ 130 GBP (approx. 200 USD)

    AVAILABILITY WILL BE EXTREMELY LIMITED!! The Filtering unitwill be made first and should start shipping in approx. 8 - 10 weeks. We will initially be taking pre orders for that only, however if you are interested in any of the above please let us know as soon as you can so we can put you on the waiting list.

    Look forward to hearing from you.

    Best regards


    I admit, the pricing is prohibitively expensive, so it doesn't look like I'll be picking anything up anytime soon, but I'm SO psyched that they're designing pedals again. I bought a Meatball from them direct in the 90's and have had it ever since. I've always pined after some of their other pedals (the big ones rule: Cheese Source, ? flanger, Wobulator, Ring Stinger...) but with most of them going for over $1,000 on evilBay it's just too rich for my blood.

    Any thoughts? I dig that they're taking a modular approach to this, so at least I could draw out the sting of the finances should I ever lose my mind and actually purchase one. I'd love to see some videos of these in action.
  2. MGR

    MGR Inactive

    Jan 18, 2015
    Bronx, NY
    As an owner of all the original Lovetone pedals that I bought new in the late 90's and still have in their original boxes, I can say with authority that Lovetone's were the biggest hype of the century effects wise, and the biggest dissapointment. I think my Lovetone's are all weak sounding pedals with no character at all. Sure they looked good, but that was about it. I'm not that excited about this, especially since my original pedals may lose value in the future. I am only keeping them as an investment to sell to some Hipster in the year 2040.
  3. dvlmusic


    Jul 24, 2010
    Alameda, CA
    Wow, really? I always really liked my Meatball, and have never needed another envelope follower. Sorry to hear that they were such a disappointment - if you think they're weak sounding, why did you drop the $$ to buy them? Did you order them sight-unseen?

    Assuming of course that you're not just trolling the thread....
  4. MGR

    MGR Inactive

    Jan 18, 2015
    Bronx, NY
    No, no trolling here. I bought them all sight unseen in the late 90's when I actually had some play money. I bought them all because of the hype that was happening at the time, and also because I knew they would be a good investment. I think I used them a few times in the studio, but I honestly thought they were junk. In fact, if you peer under the hood of those huge enclosures, there is next to no circuitry in there at all. That may or may not be a good thing ultimately, but I truly believe they became popular because of their looks. The Meatball, to me, was a very weak pedal. My Frostwave Funk a Duck absolutely killed it, and even a DOD 440 sounds better to my ears. Plus, with all those knobs, they were really hard to dial in a sound. I don't think I've even opened the boxes they were in in about 15 years.

    Nowawdays, I'm a lot more discerning. I still buy pedals because of looks/investments, but my flavor of the year is Idiotbox, which don't break the bank nearly as much as those Lovetone's did.
  5. I have to agree on the Lovetone pedals being more hype than substance. I was never all that impressed with the sounds people got out of them. There weren't a ton of small pedal builders in the 90's and even fewer doing crazy custom enclosures and whatnot so they definitely stood out.
  6. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    At those prices they better be something exceptional, or only collectors will buy them.
  7. Darkglass

    Darkglass Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 10, 2008
    Helsinki, Finland
    Douglas Castro, Founder:
    Wow! This is so exciting!
    Big fan of their stuff!
  8. jwr


    Jun 28, 2010
    Overland Park, KS
    It is exciting but I agree with the pricing. Yikes. LOL.
  9. DDXdesign

    DDXdesign formerly 'jammadave' Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 15, 2003
    I had an original Meatball at one point and really liked it, but at the time I played guitar more often than bass. Kind of wish I'd kept it around for bass usage, but eventually I needed the cash.

    I'm confused by the Cheeseball announcement - is it modular? It is even a pedal without the S unit? $1200 for the whole thing is patently insane.
  10. dvlmusic


    Jul 24, 2010
    Alameda, CA
    Oh yeah - the pricing makes me wonder what they're smoking. Yes, I think it's a modular unit. In the email they mentioned that they didn't want to overlap with their previous pedals to appeal to people who already owned stuff. I dig the tones from their classic pedals, so I'm looking forward to hearing what these can do.

    At the time Lovetone was hot, there were very few boutique pedal makers doing crazy/edgy pedals. Nowadays there's a ton, so it'll be interesting to see if they can compete. Based on the pricing, I suspect not but who knows. We wait with bated breath.
  11. meatball was hard to dial but when you did....liftoff
  12. #CashingIn
    Jeorge \Tripps had the righ idea. Revamp the line up and make it accessable to players of every level. Put out good quality product at a good pricepoint and watch the units shift.

    I wish them the best at Lovetone- I once bought a 2nd hand Brown Source for £25 but cant see me getting behind this!
    willbassyeah likes this.
  13. willbassyeah


    Oct 9, 2011
    Same with dod,
  14. winterburn69


    Jan 27, 2008

    Jeorge Tripps is a genius! Love Way Huge! I'd love to see a Havalina made for bass someday. I love the look of that pedal but apparently it sucks out pretty much all the low end. My mk II Saffron Squeeze & Blue Hippo finally arrived!!; here's to hoping more reissues of old Way Huge stuff come someday!