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Before I buy the J-Retro 1, What are my other options?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Agito, Mar 5, 2010.

  1. Agito


    Jun 27, 2009
    Hey guys
    So I'm about to buy a preamp for my bass, probably the J-Retro 01. (Used for about 240$)
    Are there any other recommended preamps out there?
    My bass is a Fender Jazz Bass American Series 2006

    Thanks in advance,
  2. gkbass13

    gkbass13 Supporting Member

    Mar 29, 2006
    New York
    Audere makes some killer drop in preamps, similar to the J-Retro...Different vibes, about half the cost and tons of flexibility. Nothing wrong with a J-retro though, they are smokin' pre's!!
  3. +1 on the Audere.
  4. Agito


    Jun 27, 2009
    I see
    The only thing that worries me is the fact the preamp is 3rd hand and he wouldn't go lower then 240
    Though I can check if it works (quick solder and stuff) and the man got good rep in the local bass classifieds
  5. gkbass13

    gkbass13 Supporting Member

    Mar 29, 2006
    New York
    240 is a bit much for a used J-retro, IMO. for 60ish more you can get one new, last I checked.
  6. Agito


    Jun 27, 2009
    I have the shipping thing plus customs unless I wait about a month or two for it so someone will bring me a preamp from US (I'm not from US)
    So IDK...
  7. gkbass13

    gkbass13 Supporting Member

    Mar 29, 2006
    New York
    Oh, where are you located?
  8. Agito


    Jun 27, 2009
  9. atauntaun

    atauntaun Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2008
    Alameda, CA
    Endorser Jule Amps Monique
    I believe for pre-assembled direct drop in pre's the J-Retro and Audere are the main choices. I picked up a J-Retro about a week ago and so far am very impressed with it. Lots of tonal possibilities and very easy to install.

    I've heard good things about the Audere and actually have one showing up today. If your interested in a comparison send me a PM. You can buy direct from Audere at www.audereaudio.com They ship internationally and at $150 US you could save some dough and have a brand new unit.
  10. chriss


    Apr 27, 2007
    Here is what I am going to try.

    The Xotic Trilogic


    This way I can use it with any number of basses. Also keeps me from installing something I may not like, as well as the hassle of having a battery under the control plate.

    It is said to be very transparent. This way I can try different pick ups without too much coloring of the sound.

    The FOH engineer likes the sound of the EMG's, but I want at the very least, a little bigger sound. This looks like a way make us both happy.

    Here is a link to a video demo.

  11. Agito


    Jun 27, 2009
    I'm confused :(
  12. Smurf-o-Deth

    Smurf-o-Deth ¡No me gustan mis pantalones!

    Oct 2, 2007
    The state of denial.
    ACG has a drop-in Jazz version of the EQ2, also.
  13. Gintaras


    Dec 11, 2004
    Kent Island, Md.
    After having both JRetro and Audere, Audere has become my favorite. Both are great preamps but I preferred the Audere. This is very subjective but I don't believe you would dislike either.

    Pricewise Used Audere's typically go for about $110 to $125 and a new one is $149.00
  14. Marton


    Sep 20, 2005
    I also have a Audere that I love, I find it to be pretty transparent, but that's what I want in a preamp. Z mode switch is pretty interesting too. And there is a LED !!!!!
  15. funkybass4ever


    Dec 12, 2007
    I also have had great experiences with Audere, in fact i just bought one yesterday. :bassist:
  16. Audere makes a great product.
  17. depalm


    Apr 22, 2004
    São Paulo
    Hi Agito,
    I use both (Audere, J-Retro) and love both in spite they work in two distinct ways.

    Audere is an "impedance load focused device", while J-Retro is a "Filter" based one.

    Sound wise Audere is a very transparent sounding preamp. It adds no "color" or volume to the bass sound.
    That means: Until you start to turn knobs and switch the sound is "passive".

    My config is: vol, mid/bal and treble/bass but you can order it in several ways (search Audere web site).
    The EQ is very well voiced but no so aggressive on boost/cut

    Besides the EQ section there is a Z-Mode control switch that delivers 3 bass voices.
    Mid Z-Mode (center position) Neutral sound.
    High Z-Mode (toward the bridge) Treble boost.
    Low Z-Mode (toward the neck) Bass boost.

    To tell you the truth I have never found a use for the High and Low Z modes but I guess its good to have them just in case.

    IME Audere is a preamp for the "passive" or "vintage" guys that want to have some control without messing with the natural sound.

    J-Retro on the other hand is a monster "Control Strip" at the reach of your hands.

    My config is: Vol/Blend, Treble(Bright Pull) /Bass, Mid/Mid Freq.
    Passive/Active Switch, Pickups Switch.

    First, it slightly boosts bass and treble when engaged, it adds some sort of "thickness" to the tone. That helps a lot people who find JBs single coils sound anemic in general.

    The EQ section is - very - aggressive.
    Bass is 50Hz boost only but have a center detent knob.
    Treble 3k boost / 1k cut. (nice) Bright pull 7k boost!
    Mid sweep is unique! Very clever.

    It also features two independent pickup gain adjustment. More power!

    IME J-Retro is a very versatile device and worth every penny.
    Bassist with Ash/Maple basses should love it.
    Slapping with it is a fantastic experience!

    Hope that helps!
  18. Agito


    Jun 27, 2009
    Well I am looking for a Marcus Miller sound (Smooth slap sound and Active)
    My bass is Alder/rosewood and it's a bit mellow for my taste
    And I'm looking to spice it up though I don't know if I want transparent preamp, I actually do want some coloring of the sound.

    I'll think about it later, I don't know why I am awake right now :S (5:00AM)
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