Thermionic Culture The Culture Vulture
The Thermionic Culture Culture Vulture was born out of an idea over a pint in the local pub between Vic Keary and Nick Terry, when they were at Chiswick Reach Studios. The original schematics were sketched on the back of a menu, and the idea was t... read more
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The Thermionic Culture Culture Vulture was born out of an idea over a pint in the local pub between Vic Keary and Nick Terry, when they were at Chiswick Reach Studios. The original schematics were sketched on the back of a menu, and the idea was to create a guitar distortion unit, so they didn't need to plug in an amp to record.
Little did they know that this would go on to be one of their most popular Thermionic Culture products!
The Culture Vulture is a two channel distortion unit designed to provide anything from subtle harmonic enhancement to full out distortion, all with the use of valves only.
It has 6 valves in its design with 2 x EF86 on the input stage, 2 x 6AS6 to provide control of the distortion and 2 x 5963 on the output stage and has controls such as Valve Mode, Bias and Drive which when combined together provide a wide range of tonal options, and flexible sounds. The Culture Vulture can be a distortion device, or a subtle harmonic warmer, but it has scope to bring to life even the most languid sounds!
There are three choices T, P1 and P2. T mode using the Distortion Valve in Triode mode which mainly produces warmth by second order harmonics. P1 and P2 uses the Distortion Valve in Pentode mode - which is much more aggressive with odd harmonics. P2 is more extreme.
The Bias control changes the amount of current going through the 6AS6 Distortion valve which changes the break up point, and can make it sound thin or fat
There is a 12dB per Octave low-pass filter with 9kHz or 6kHz selectable frequencies to help remove some of the sizzle or harshness of the top end (if required) and a Drive control and Overdrive switch are included and designed to add additional levels to the signal before feeding the Distortion valve stage.
The Culture Vulture uses a 'single ended' unbalanced output which Thermionic feels provides a very 'open sound'