Who Stole the Orange?The story of the Character Series started over two years ago when Tech21 decided to market five effect pedals that each one simulated a legendary amp. Their immediate success made the manufacturer launch three new models in 2010. We tested the Oxford, a stomp box that smells like orange peel... Read more…
Tech 21 Oxford tech. sheet
Manufacturer: Tech 21
Series: Character Series
Category: Guitar Amp Simulation Pedals
Added in our database on: 04/24/2010
We have no technical specifications for this product but your help will be much welcomed
This is an interesting pedal, actually most of the character series is interesting. They all have their own little flavors of famous amps using the same set of controls on each. The Oxford in particular, as you may be able to tell from the orange aesthetic is meant to emulate or have the sounds of vintage tones specifically marshalls, orange amps etc.
All the knobs, are ACTIVE. Meaning that even with the slightest turn, it'll affect the sound, GREATLY. You don't need to turn each knob too far to start hearing results.
The speaker sim is sort of a love/hate thing. Some people don't like it some people do but it actually depends on how you're setting the rest of the knobs. One setting you have that sounds great with the speaker sim on, will not sound the same with the speaker sim off. As a matter of fact you should think of setting the speaker sim on or off first, and THEN tweaking the rest of the knobs.
As I've toyed with this for quite a long time, one can actually get great sounds with the speaker sim on OR off. It just completely depends on how you set everything else.
Ok here's where we get really critical. Does it sound good overall? Yes it sounds great!
Does it sound like a vintage marshall or orange amp? No. Not at all. But the sounds I was able to achieve sounded very convincing and very good when paired up with a tube amp of any sort.
I haven't tried this direct but knowing most pedals of this type, the tone will probably lack when compared to hooking it up to an all tube amp. The distortion is clear, and can be tweaked for low/medium gain applications or even super high gain metal type and get get quite convincing, strong, thick rhythm tones.
In my opinion the sounds are most like a smoother sounding solid-state pedal. Which is great! But may not suit others. If i were blindfolded, would I be able to tell? probably not.
Overall it's a good sounding pedal and is very tweakable. You can get a wide variety of vintage-esque sounds from low gain to completely over the top high gain. The sounds are very convincing but you have to work with the speaker sim which some people may not like the sound of when engaged. There is a specific sound that this pedal gives out overall, a vibe, if you will that some people might like, and some people won't.
Does it sound exactly like a vintage marshall-esque amp? I wouldn't say so but at the same time I can't tell you why either. There is something about it that is untrue that can be heard when playing leads, single note runs etc. Maybe it's how it tracks, or maybe it's how the notes decay when playing leads that differentiate it from tube amps.
Either way it's still a really good sounding pedal for what it is and the price, and if paired up with a tube amp, you're set to go!
The character series from Tech 21 has really gone after some of the most highlighted amplifier manufacturers in the world. We have seen a Fender, Mesa Boogie, Vox, Marshall, and several updated version of the Liverpool and the Mesa Boogie. These amp manufacturers are probably the leaders as far as the most used and most recognizable amplifiers in the world.
This particular pedal goes after the voicing s and tones of the famous Orange Amplifiers. These amps have a familiar British character to them but unique on their own. They have a tone that is closer to the Marshall amps and yet has been able to separate itself quiet well with their out of the box high gain amps. Most Marshall amps need to be modified to have the tones you heard in many records or the 70's 80's 90's and today. The Orange amps had that crunch straight from the factory much like the Hiwatts had. Still the tone of the Orange amps in distinct and unique on its own.
Tech 21 SansAmp Character Series Oxford Amplifier Emulation Pedal Features at a Glance:
The classic tone of '70s era Brit-rock and psychedelic movement
Creamy, Vintage 30-style 4x12 speaker emulation
Speaker emulation defeat switch for use with a real amplifier
Level and Drive controls act like a traditional, well-equipped amp's
Active Low, Mid and High EQ controls let you dial in your sound
Continuously-variable Character knob moves seamlessly between different voicings
This has to be one of my favorites of the character series from Tech 21. My favorite has to be the Mesa Boogie simulator which is called the US Steel or the California. The tone from this pedal is very rich and sounds extremely close to those Orange amps from the 70's. Well at least as close as you can get from a distortion pedal.
I like this pedal with a Gibson Les Paul or another guitar with a humbucker pickup installed. I find that it reacts t the nature of the pedal better with the thicker double coiled pickups.
These pedals are great for going straight into a recording session as they suffer a bit in front of a tube amp. At new these pedals come in at around $169, which is a decent price for this pedal.
I would recommend this pedal to those who want that creamy orange distortion tone and don't want to shell out $2000 for an Orange amp. This pedal will not sound like an Orange amp or have that feel of the tubes but the voicing is pretty close to the style and tone.
This is a classic case of pedal ... Robust.
Pity to have power supply connections and jacks on the sides. Not a promising R & D top pdaleboard. For the interior is analog.
Also, a switch to simulate "hp".
The typical to this pedal is that it was conceived to: live in studio sound card, live live in the amp or directly into a PA (I was not essay and not rely on me).
Prime strength of this pedal: the knobs are trsractifs (even very small rotation of a knob changes the sound). And the great majority of rglages be used. The manual? About Me I work the ear.
I have a Gibson Les Paul and a Telecaster American Series, branches into a Fender Pro Reverb Silverface. I added in an ext speaker cabinet 2x12 "V30. I was looking for potatoes in OD or distortion ... I've used. Bluffing this pedal. Bluffing also a sound card (then activate the switch hp). Really, a lot of heat and momentum, but attention has obviously not only replaces the string of killer amp, microphones killing, Pramper madness, etc. ...
About hp simulation, it is prpondrante: the pedal becomes almost unusable in the live sound card.
Trs good pedal. For me quality over the normal price. Matches its price range. Since I also bought a VT Bass pedal in the same series.
I think keep the pedal a good time! And I'm someone demanding.
I also think that to use with very good stuff Reveals the advantage.
I already had a tri-ac SansAmp works very well but the studio was blowing a bit annoying even
if the grain was ... But it's very very realistic and there is no souffle.Bref in fremente eyes on my tiny lamp bugera all, I feel I have to buy a Orange tiny.Bref but happiness ...