NAMM 2012: Klonのビルダー Bill Finnegan氏が公開 新Klonの名称は非公式ながら 「KTR」

さ~て既に一部のコメントが日本でもされていますが、私のホームページですのでタダでは帰しませんよ、やっちゃいます。実は NAMM 2012にて新しいKlonの実物が展示されていまして、その動画を日本で初めてだと思いますが、公開します。



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それと、この Bill Finnegan氏はいい意味で非常に頑固な匠とでも言うべき方です。今回はみなさん「KTR」を買いましょう。これを自作した日にはまた作るの辞めてしまうことも厭わない方だと思いますよ。

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New Klon NAMM 2012


これは絶対に敬意を払って待ってでも、並んででも買うべきエフェクターです。Bill氏自身が説明しています。 オリジナルより小さいが、NOSのゲルマニウムダイオードも同じものを使っておりその結果サウンドも同じ、ケースはオリジナルとは違うが、もう少し広く皆に入手できるようになるように長い間掛けて再設計した。

今までは製造に12~14週掛かるため少量生産しかできなかったし、あまりにも注文が自分自身のキャパに対して多く、人間らしい生活がしたくてKlon Centaurの生産は辞めたと言っていました。

the GearPageより
 
 
 

まだ NAMM 2012の時点では詳細は決まっていなかったようですが、こちら「Klon」でコメントしていますように、既に最初の製造は始まっていますが製造元との契約があるらしく、2~3ヶ月したら発売になるとは思っている。が相手もいるので約束したと誤解はして欲しくないそうです。

Bill氏自身は Klonは 間違いなく 98~99% バッファーありがいいサウンドになると信じている。が、今のプレイヤーにはトゥルーバイパスのニーズが高いので、バッファーありとトゥルーバイパスとの切り替えが横にある穴から出ているSWでできるようにしてあるそうです。

実は、バッファーありとトゥルーバイパスとの切り替えが横にある穴から出ているSW構造は、Timmyなどを製造しているビルダーのPaul Cochraneの協力もあり見かけ上のインピーダンスが変わらないように回路上工夫したそうです(ということはトゥルーバイパスなしにして1MΩに入力のインピーダンスをすればまんまKlonとなる?)。

TGP(The Gear Page)での Bill Finnegan氏のコメント
Aside from the new switchable buffer/true-bypass feature, the circuit of the new unit is identical to that of the discontinued Centaur with one exception necessitated by the new feature: a 2-megohm resistor was added to prevent switching pop from the discharge part of an existing capacitor's charge/discharge cycle, and the value of the existing resistor that sets the input impedance of the circuit was increased from 1 megohm to 2 megohms. These two resistors, the new one and the existing one, are in parallel, resulting in an input impedance of 1 megohm, the same as that of the Centaur: the incoming signal "sees" exactly the same impedance it saw in the Centaur, and the resulting sound is exactly the same. The switchable buffer/true-bypass design, by the way, was the work of my friend Paul Cochrane of Tim/Timmy fame, who is one of the smartest and coolest people I know, so big thanks and tip-of-the-hat to Paul.

The new unit will have the exact same NOS germanium diodes that I used throughout the fifteen years of Centaur production. I'm aware that a number of people over the years have made snide remarks about what they've tended to refer to as the "magic" diodes, and stated that they can't hear a difference between these and whatever diodes the various would-be cloners use, so here's what I've said on the subject many times and will now say yet again: I have never considered this particular diode (a specific part from a specific manufacturer, back when they were still making it) to be "magic" in any way - I simply consider it, after a ton of listening to every possible substitute, to be the best-sounding diode in my circuit, a circuit that I and my two design partners (successively) worked on for four-and-a-half years and that I understand from the inside-out, in a way that I have a hard time imagining any of the would-be cloners could. This diode may well sound not-so-good in any number of other overdrive or distortion circuits (it's not "magic", remember?), but my long-held and always self-challenged opinion is that thus far it is clearly the best-sounding one, and by a not-inconsiderable margin, in my circuit. For those people who claim not to be able to hear a difference between what it has to offer and what other diodes have to offer in my circuit, my question is a simple one: REALLY?

The above begs an obvious question: does the new unit sound the same as the Centaur did? After a great deal of listening over the course of a long period of time, including lots of blind A/B testing, my opinion is that it does.

On an unrelated note, the circuit board of the new unit will not be covered in the epoxy potting compound I used to cover the boards of the Centaur units.

Lastly, the new unit will not be called the Centaur II or anything even remotely like that; as a production unit the Centaur is dead and gone and has been for more than two years now, so why live in the past? I'm not doing it because I've found it not to be healthy, so take from that what you will. As for the new unit's name, it has an informal one, but not a formal one: nothing has ever suggested itself strongly enough to make a real case for itself as a just-plain-right-and-inevitable name. I refer to it as the KTR, which hints at the informal name; please don't ask me what that is, and please don't drive yourselves crazy trying to guess what it is - I'm sure you'll grant that I can't be held responsible, etc.

Regards,
Bill Finnegan
Klon

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当初、Klone unitを友人に作っていたものが eBay上で販売されていた件についてのコメント

Hi guys -

I had hoped to be able to provide you with some info on the appearance of the new unit today, but having read some of the responses to my long post of last night, clearly I need to address some other things first. For the record:

I have never made a promise or commitment to ANYONE that the forthcoming unit would be out by any particular date, either via e-mail or verbally on the phone or on the Klon website. The "sometime in 2010" on the placeholder page for the site was copy from 2009 and was a PROJECTION based on how it seemed things were likely to go with developing the new unit at the time; as for how they actually went, see below.

As is known by many, many people at this point, the allegation and/or casual assumption that I myself have been selling those Centaur units on eBay is categorically untrue. The listing copy I wrote for my friend, the single mom for whom I build a unit whenever she asks me for one, and to whom I give them to sell, says explicitly that "I won't make so much as a penny on these units"; if you have a hard time believing that, let me suggest that you contact TGP members "tibbon" or "TaylorBarefoot" for confirmation: both of them know me well, and both of them have met the boy - an incredibly wonderful boy, by the way - who is being raised by my friend under very difficult circumstances financially. Off the top of my head, here are a few of the things those Centaur units have helped her pay for thus far: rent, food, clothing, school supplies, car repairs, medical expenses, and his summer day camp each year (she works year-round as a librarian, and - finances completely aside - can't just take the summer off when the school year ends). Feel free any time to criticize a product of mine or my far-from-perfect record of keeping all of you informed about various things, but please think twice before impugning my integrity.

On to how things actually went in developing the new unit: I began working on it in 2009, late spring or early summer. By August I was ready to hire a p.c. board designer, and after asking around I hired a guy who had a fair amount of experience designing boards for audio and came highly recommended. To say things didn't work out would be putting it mildly, but it took about five months for it to become clear to me that there was no chance of them working out; given that good p.c. board designers with experience designing for audio don't grow on trees, my default setting then and later on was to see if I could get to the finish line with who I had. In January 2010 I beat the bushes and found another guy, also highly recommended. I had been told he was always very busy, so literally the first question I asked him during our initial phone conversation was "Do you have the time to do this without undue delay?" He said yeah, absolutely (he'd Googled "Klon", found out that a lot of people had a high regard for my original unit, the one this one was to replace, and thought it would be a feather in his cap to be able to say he'd designed the board for the new Klon unit). You know the end of this story: he strung me along for another four or five months, missing every single deadline he'd said he'd have something or other done by, and finally admitted that he wouldn't be doing the job and tried to get me to hire a friend of his. I'd talked to this other guy on the phone a couple of times, as the guy I had hired told me at some point that he was subbing out "some basic layout" for the job to him (huh?), and it was apparent that, as they say, he's not the brightest bulb on the tree. So . . . more beating of the bushes in May, and another guy, the third if you're keeping score at home. Same story as the second - "Too busy?" "No-no-no" - but this time only three weeks or so until he admitted otherwise (a nice change of pace from my experience with the previous guy). More bush-beating in June, and lo and behold: the fourth guy, a guy who is the owner of and principal designer for a high-end hi-fi audio company (their preamps and power amps sell for serious amounts of money, far beyond what anyone except the truly wealthy could afford), and who designs the boards for his company's products. I almost fell to my knees sobbing with gratitude when he agreed to take the job on, but alas, it's another tale of woe: he is a very smart guy, but by the same token he is demonstrably not a professional board designer - he made a number of bad mistakes with the design over the several months I worked with him, each of which I paid for dearly in every possible way. So . . . yet more bush-beating toward the end of 2010, which at length yielded the fifth guy, the guy who eventually designed a workable and good-sounding board, prototypes of which - after an initial iteration with several mistakes that had to be corrected - I received last January, January of 2011. Was this the end of the difficulties I encountered in trying to bring the new unit to market? As Dave Barry wrote in one of his books, "Don't make me laugh in a harsh, barking manner." I'm not sure how much of the rest of the nightmare I should share with you guys, but quote me wildly: it has been truly nightmarish.

Regards,
Bill Finnegan
Klon

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