Watkins WEM Custom Copicat We're tape and disc echo specialists and always have a good selection of vintage...
Watkins WEM Custom Copicat
We’re tape and disc echo specialists and always have a good selection of vintage echo machines. Check out our other listings for fully-serviced Binsons, Copicats, Echoplexes and Roland Space/Chorus Echoes.
As business sellers, we’ve sold many tape echoes in the past ten years; we understand how they should sound and function.
We guarantee that this machine will not disappoint.
Offered for sale here is a WEM Custom Copicat dating from the mid-late sixties in fair cosmetic condition and excellent working order for a 45 year-old valve Copicat. Cosmetically, it’s a bit scruffy and one of the black plastic grilles has sustained some damage (please see detailed photos below). This has undergone a thorough mechanical and electrical overhaul/service and has been fitted with a three-core earthed mains cable for safety – there are no known issues with this unit.
Compared to the later IC Copicats the valve units don’t usually produce such clear echoes, even when in good order. This sounds lovely both as a pre-amp and as an echo unit. All three heads work well and sound excellent – good strong repeats that break up in an evocative fashion, and run into self-oscillation when the ‘reverb’ knob is turned up for authentic dub effects – great valve saturation. The echoes have a good tone for an old valve Copicat and degrade with a dark crunchy quality; they cannot be described as accurate repeats – this is not a digital delay – but they have a sound and vibe that is most pleasing and create a unique effect that sounds ‘right’.
Unusually, this one is over-keen to self-oscillate – starting to get fruity at anything at settings from about 9-10 o’clock onwards: this isn’t a problem as you can still back off to very low single repeats, but it needs to be treated with care if you’re not into crazy psychedelic noise-mongering. I just lost myself for quite some time testing this – Customs are my favourite Copicats by far – they just have a great sound that to me is spot-on: sixties pop valve warmth, but with some flower power thrown in for good measure. Very groovy indeed, man.
Valve Copicats make great preamps, and are increasingly sought-after to add character and warmth to modern digital recordings (the Arctic Monkeys used a Custom Copicat when recording their ‘Suck It And See’ album – see Sound On Sound magazine July 2011), as a result they are becoming harder to find, especially in good working order.
It’s fitted with a new tape – these are easy to bulk buy online, but if the winning bidder wants some spares, please message us for prices/quantities. For best performance tape loops should be changed regularly
It is a UK 240v model so will require a step-up transformer for use in countries with 100-110v mains supplies; the UK plug will be removed for overseas deliveries unless otherwise requested (will be left on for USA/Canada/Japan).
Many Copicats on Ebay are not in great shape and (at best) need a service – this one is working fine, apart from the faults detailed, but please be aware that it is a vintage unit and may not take kindly to being shipped. It will be well-packed, but if it’s not behaving as it should on receipt, please get in touch.
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