Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

External Pedal Pre Amps

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by TaySte_2000, Jul 25, 2004.


  1. TaySte_2000

    TaySte_2000

    Jun 23, 2001
    Manchester, UK
    Endorsing Artist: Mojohand, Subdecay, Overwater, Matamp
    I'm interested in a pre for my passive basses, therefore with this post I'm leaning away from the mxr, sansamp and the pod.

    I've been concidering some preamps that are very similar to internal pres available on many basses but i've not had chance to try any so I was wondering about your thoughts before I have to spend endless hours searching for one:

    1. Yamaha NE-1
    2. Sadowsky Pre
    3. Fodera Pre
    4. John East U-Retro pedal
    5. Aphex Bass Exciter - I know a little different but i'm only concidering tone shaping devices that I would have on all the time for all purposes.

    Thanks guys.
     
  2. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    The NE-1 isn't a preamp by any mean. It's a semi parametric EQ.
    The Sadowsky is great if you're only looking for low and high boost.
    Others you may want to look at :
    SansAmp BassDriver
    MXR M80
    EBS MicroBass II
     
  3. TaySte_2000

    TaySte_2000

    Jun 23, 2001
    Manchester, UK
    Endorsing Artist: Mojohand, Subdecay, Overwater, Matamp
    What I was saying is I wanted an external pre that acted like the pres in active basses and not like an amp emulator like the mxr and the sansamp but thanks for the info.
     
  4. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    You can use both of them like an equalizer, leaving tube simul on the side.
     
  5. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    What makes you think the MXR is an amp emulator? It has a distortion channel, but no amp emulator.

    Also, you don't HAVE to use the amp emulation feature on the Sansamp BDDI. I use one often, but rarely if ever use the amp emulation - I usually use it as a DI / eq boost.

    So, from what you say, the MXR and Sansamp DO fit your criteria. I wouldn't include the Aphex or Yamaha, as they're really not preamps of the type you'd find on a bass.

    So, to add Jazz Ad's list that gives you a list of:

    MXR M80 - three band, two channel, DI
    Sansamp BDDI - two band, single channel, DI
    Sadowsky - two band, boost only, DI
    Fodera 2000 - three band, two channel, no DI
    John East - three band, two channel, DI
    EBS MicroBass II - three band, two channel, DI
    Aguilar DB924 - two band, boost only, no DI

    I've owned all of the above at one point or another, they all have their pluses and minuses. You need to think about exactly what you want from a pedal i.e.:

    1. 2 band/3 band?
    2. DI?
    3. One channel/two channel?
    4. Distortion/overdrive?

    Once you list that, we can help you cut down the list of possible matches.

    There are many pages of threads discussing all of these pedals in the amps and effects forums. I'd suggest starting there and reading some of the previous discussions. If you have any specific questions about any of them, fire away.
     
  6. TaySte_2000

    TaySte_2000

    Jun 23, 2001
    Manchester, UK
    Endorsing Artist: Mojohand, Subdecay, Overwater, Matamp
    Thanks David.

    I think i'd like to go for a three band pre with a DI, not to bothered about moe than one channel unless they have individual controls for each and not just a pre shape. I don't need any overdrive or distortion.

    I must have got confusted with the mxr and the sansamp I always felt like if you wanted an amp less setup these would be the best to go with.

    I've read most of the reviews on the boxes mentioned so you can avoid comments on the mxr and the sansamp and even the yamaha, but there doesn't seem to be that much info around on the others but in saying that maybe theres a reason why theres 10,000 threads on the mxr and the sansamp and next to none on the john east pre, etc.

    Thanks for all the help guys
     
  7. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    OK, so the three band with DI options are MXR, John East and EBS. I'm not sure if you're in Manchester, England or Manchester, New Hampshire (or somewhere else in the US). In the US, the cost increases from MXR to JE to EBS - the EBS is around three times the cost of the MXR.

    The MXR lets you have eq on channel 1, then you can kick in channel 2 with no distortion for a slap friendly eq.

    I only used the John East briefly, as a unit it's perfectly fine but they're just made in very small numbers so I think that's why they're not mentioned much. With the JE, you can kick in/out the mid freqs with button 2.

    The EBS is very good, has a bunch of extra features - i.e. overdrive, and you can use it as a headphone amp also. But if all you want is simple and cost effective, I'd recommend the MXR.
     
  8. TaySte_2000

    TaySte_2000

    Jun 23, 2001
    Manchester, UK
    Endorsing Artist: Mojohand, Subdecay, Overwater, Matamp
    Nope i'm in the original Manchester good ole' England.

    I've checked the prices:
    U-Retro - £195
    MXR - £225
    EBS - £250

    The EBS is really new though so this might go down abit. Did you notice any volume differences between the channels on any of the pedals because this is the problem I have on my ashdown amp the pre shape is a great slap tone but it sounds quieter than my fingerstyle tone, so it's the wrong way round for me.

    I'm just looking for what will give my passive basses the best tone, I tend to leave my eq pretty much flat with just a small boost but always like the extra tone boost you get from having an active pre.
     
  9. TaySte_2000

    TaySte_2000

    Jun 23, 2001
    Manchester, UK
    Endorsing Artist: Mojohand, Subdecay, Overwater, Matamp
    Managed to try a Radial Bassbone today now I'd concider this in the same league as the others I've listed above. All I can say is maybe I';m looking at the wrong thing, I was really unimpressed with £220 worth of kit the channel with the eq was ok but the pre shapes to me seems boring, I liked the boost button but that alone is not worth £220.

    After trying this I think maybe I'm looking at the wrong thing, I'm gonna go back and try a bass exciter as I think that might be what I'm after, I just want to add a little beef to my passive basses, maybe this is the way, maybe not but worth a try.

    Thanks for the help guys if you have any more input just let me know.
     
  10. The Aguilar db924 is a straightup outboard preamp. It is the same as their OBD-1 internal preamp. 18V, Bass, Treble, and Level. It will beef up any passive bass.

    This is what you are looking for.
     
  11. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    Don't get me wrong: I like the db924, but it fits neither of those criteria.
     
  12. Don`t forget Raven Labs PMBII, not really pedal although, but you get 2 channels pre, 3-band EQ, effect loop, DI