Universal Audio has gone all-in on the amp-in-a-pedal concept and just announced its latest entry, This pedal digitally recreates a trio of classic 100-watt Marshall Plexi setups from the 1960s. You get the titular Super Lead based on the classic tube amp, the Super Bass inspired by the 1967 low-end icon and the Brown, which emulates the sound of a 100-watt Marshall Plexi heading into a Variac to recreate Eddie Van Halen’s infamous guitar tone.
This is a modern pedal with high-tech features, however, so it goes well beyond simple amp recreations. The onboard IR includes recreations of different classic microphones and speaker cabinets to adjust the sound. There’s also built-in reverb, volume boost, presence and a variety of assignable preset switches that are customized by using a smartphone app. There are also plenty of artist presets to select from if you’ve grown weary of fiddling with knobs.
All of the speaker models derive from the company’s OX Stomp pedal. There’s six in total at launch, with more to be added at a later date. Updating is easy, as there’s a USB-C port on the back, in addition to mono/stereo jack connectors.
You can even bypass the cabinet and mic emulations entirely if you would rather rely on your actual amp. UA says these features combine to create “the most authentic late ‘60s British 100-watt tube sound ever placed into a stompbox.” The UAFX Lion ’68 Super Lead is available now for the usual high-end price tag of $400.
Accompanying today’s release is a new tremolo pedal, a chorus/vibrato pedal and a compressor pedal based on the classic Teletronix LA-2A. This is not the company’s first foray of amp recreations. Universal Audio cut its teeth making plugins, including many based on classic amps. More recently, it released based on the Fender Deluxe Reverb, the Fender Tweed Deluxe and the Vox AC30. We reviewed all three and said despite the hefty $400 price tag.