When I first announced that I would be reviewing the Molten Valkeen Whistle ($53, Referee Store.com), I had some interesting comments on social media. The best, by far was this: “For $53, it better recognize fouls AND give me the correct restart!”
Sadly, the Valkeen will not solve our restart woes, but it is one hell of a whistle.
The Molten Valkeen is from the same company that created the Dolfin whistle and you’ll immediately notice the resemblance. Japan-based Molten says that several years went into R&D and that over 100 prototype whistles were produced. The final product – which derives its’ name from Valkryie, the goddess of war – is a pealess, two tone whistle that the company says produces “two interfering frequencies, 4.15 kHz and 3.67 kHz, [resulting in] a unique beat.”
The pack-ins include a standard lanyard and a set of unique whistle holders the company calls a “Flip Grip”. The Flip Grip comes in three different sizes, and the packaging includes a sizing guide to help select the proper fit.
I’ll try to not overstate my conclusions, but the fact is, this is the best, loudest, easiest to blow whistle I’ve ever used.
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For $65, it better recognize fouls AND give me the correct restart!
The Valkeen has a uniquely colored tone, thanks to the dual sound chambers and the harmonic overtones it creates. It sounds like a whistle you’ve heard before, but at the same time, you realize it is somehow different. This makes it quite difficult to get an accurate recording without professional recording gear (that didn’t stop me trying; see below).
It is amazingly easy to blow. From the short tweet of a simple foul, to the long ring of a penalty decision, I found it was very easy to get the tone I wanted.
The Flip Grip is such a revelation, it leaves you wondering why no one thought of it before now. Not once did I feel I might drop the whistle. It sat very secure between my fingers, even while my fingers where very wet from sweat, rain and hydrating fluids.
Effusive praise notwithstanding, $65 is a lot to pay for a whistle. While I can definitively say it is the best, most comfortable, easiest to blow, most commanding whistle I’ve ever used, I can’t say it is worth $53 USD.
If you are very serious about your refereeing, or are a gear nut (or both), then you should probably dip into the secret account and cough up the dough. Otherwise, see our comprehensive Whistle Roundup for much more affordable options.
At this time, the Valkeen is available in the USA only through Referee Store.com.