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Saturday, November 10, 2012

2012 Diezel VH4 Review

After playing Herbert for two years, I just get myself another Diezel amp - VH4.
"VH" stands for "Valve Head" as Peter Diezel told me.

VH4 is the earliest flagship model from Diezel which launched since 1994.
Original VH4 came with "blue face" panel and 6L6 powertubes. Old VH4 sounds darker and more compressed.
Diezel reissued those blueface VH4 with EL34 as limited edition in last year 2011.

There is another version of VH4 called "VH4S", S stands for "Stereo".
Two independent 50w poweramp sections on VH4S. You can either drive two poweramps for stereo effect,
or run two different types of powertubes (EL34 and 6L6) for two different kinds of tone.

My favourite artists/bands use VH4 such as Adam Jones from Tool, James Hetfield from Metallica,
Matt Bellamy from Muse, Mark Tremonti from Alter Bridge/Creed, Wes Borland from Limp Bizkit and many more.

VH4 is a 4-channel monster - Ch1. Clean, Ch2. Crunch, Ch3. Mega, Ch4. Lead.
Ch.1 has Diezel typical "Hi-Fi" punchy cleantone. This channel takes OD/Dist pedal pretty well.
Ch.2 is the paradise for blues and vintage rock players. High compression and picking sensitive low gain sound.
Both Ch.1 and Ch.2 have "Bright" switch to boost up some highs.

Ch.3 and Ch.4 is the Armageddon from VH4 which trademarked Diezel high gain tone in the industry.
Ch.3 has tighter and drier brutal sound to cover from hardrock to heavy metal scene easily.
This channel is voiced towards lower-mid and tracks fast aggressive picking style extremely well.
Ch.4 extends Ch3 to higher compressed and slightly saturated gain level.
You can get most aggressive and brutal high gain from this channel. It's designed for smooth juicy lead tone.
But when you tuned back gain level, it can do thrash metal rhythm too. Ch.4 is a very versatile channel.

Presence and Deep knobs from Diezel amps are usable for all level.
Even cranked the presence knob to highest setting, you wouldn't hear "fizzy/buzzy" like other high gain amps.
They are good for adding modern tone elements into your VH4.

Parallel loop volume is to mix the level of the parallel FX loop which is MIDI programmable ("Send 2" red button).
According to user manual, you could use this volume control as Second master volume.
"Channel Insert" is also MIDI programmable to turn on the individual channel FX loop.
There are total six FX loops on VH4 - typical Serial/Parallel FX loop and
Channel Insert FX loop for letting you hook up any effect pedals with individual channel.
For example, you could simply add EQ pedal into Ch.3, chorus pedal into Ch.4 or compressor into Ch.1.
Again, all Channel Insert FX loops are MIDI programmable.
MIDI in and thru which is compatible with most of the MIDI footswitch in the market.
I use Tech21, NYC MIDI moose for my Diezel VH4 and Herbert without problem.

You probably heard "Germans always make good stuff".

JJ KT77 shipped with Diezel amps from factory since year 2012.
Peter Diezel thinks they sound great and more reliable. To my ears, KT77 sounds like EL34
without too much mid hump and comes with 6L6 punchy bass behind.

Ruby 12AX7AC5 which is relabelled from Shuguang(Chinese) 12AX7 9th-Gen High Grade tube.

The 6L6/EL34 switch.

Incredible VH4 !

My Diezel VH4 demo


  1. I would really like to know of how you purchased a diezel and how much it cost you, btw i'm a malaysian also. Been trying to get the vh4s for a while.

  2. You can order directly from Diezel factory in Germany or Diezel dealer from neighbouring countries

  3. How much exactly you pay for the vh4? Interested to know.