Budget Friendly Bass Preamps

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Hendo2511, Jun 25, 2019.

  1. Hendo2511


    Aug 27, 2018
    I’ve been looking at EHX Battalion and TCE Spectradrive to add as a preamp/DI. Which of these two would you prefer and why? Also open to other suggestions for preamps as well.
  2. vivaknoxvegas

    vivaknoxvegas El Duderino Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2002
    Knoxville, TN
    The Behringer BDI21 is very budget and very good for the money. It’s a sansamp basically.
    Marikk, b-b-b-bass, Ronzo and 3 others like this.
  3. BassikLee

    BassikLee Commercial User

    Feb 13, 2004
    Starke, FL
    Owner: JLA Custom In Ear Monitors
    Joyo true tone series. They are copies of the tech21 character series, and very very nice
  4. Great pedal for 20 bux, ethics etc aside.

    Which one is which out of interest?
    vivaknoxvegas likes this.
  5. Agosix

    Agosix Supporting Member

    May 7, 2013
    Woodhaven NY
    EHX Nano Battalion
    Hendo2511 likes this.
  6. JohnArnson


    May 28, 2019
    Hartke Bass Attack II, perhaps.

    The Behringer BDI21 is a super cheap very good clone of the Tech 21 SansAmp Bass Driver DI, the first version, but it comes with scooped mids, so if you don't like that I would look for something else.

    If your sound happens to be mid scooped it's definitely a really good suggestion.

    Doesn't come much cheaper, and sounds as great as the original much more expensive Tech 21 preamp.
    Hendo2511 likes this.
  7. Hendo2511


    Aug 27, 2018
    After doing more comparisons I’ve now settled onto the Tech 21 Sansamp bass driver v2. I’m liking what I’m seeing for this one. Thoughts?
  8. Define your budget?
  9. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    It's a very well know quantity, and made well. If you like the tone of it (it's nominally got a baked in tone), it's good. Not my cup of tea, but I may be in the minority. I use Tech 21 Q Strips as a preamp/DI's, which is more neutral - more my cup of tea.
  10. Hendo2511


    Aug 27, 2018
    Probably around the $200 mark
    NickFromNY likes this.
  11. With that budget, most preamp pedals are in your range if you consider Used. I really like the Aguilar Tone hammer and is available for less than that used, slightly more new. Mesa Subway DI can be found used in your range too. Either would be a great choice
    Astronaut and Obese Chess like this.
  12. MaxSpinrun

    MaxSpinrun Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 10, 2012
    Knoxville, Tn
    I went with the Spectradrive because of the I/O flexibility. Aux in and headphone out. DI out is flexible as well. Powerful EQ. solidly built, compression and drive for dirt if needed. Works for silent practice or in your live setup!

    Attached Files:

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  13. waveman


    Sep 25, 2008
    MXR M81 is my favorite.
    b-b-b-bass and Hendo2511 like this.
  14. Obese Chess

    Obese Chess Spicy Big Dad Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2005
    Portland, OR
    Co-signed. I picked up my B7K for $185 on Reverb a few years ago IIRC.
  15. Used SansAmp RBI should be within reach.
  16. If you can live without a DI output, the MXR 10-band EQ makes a dandy preamp.
    Otherwise the MXR M81 bass preamp is nice and compact. And the Behringer BDI21 is worthy!
  17. For those on a super tight budget, pair the Behringer with the Caline CP-24 10 band EQ.
  18. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    May 24, 2006
    I can recommend the Southampton Ictineo if you’re willing to put a little time into sussing out all the things it can do. But it’s definitely not a plug & go type pre.

    My favorite (and don’t let the name fool you) is the Barber Linden EQ. It’s basically the front end of an Ampeg B-15N plus some additional tone shaping switches that boost it up to a whole ‘nother level. And an amazing value at (currently) $99 direct.
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2019
  19. Hendo2511


    Aug 27, 2018
    Just so you all know I went with the Sansamp Bass Driver v2. Got some pretty good discounts from GC and am now waiting for it to arrive!
    Ian McLaughlin likes this.
  20. Ian McLaughlin

    Ian McLaughlin

    Aug 11, 2018
    I got a used V2 here on TB.

    I still have my road-worn pre-V1 BDDI that I should sell, still works great.