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J-Retro vs. Sadowsky Outboard

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Joiner, Feb 27, 2001.

  1. Joiner


    Oct 12, 2000
    Hi to everyone in here,

    I got another question, I want to have my first bass (Fender Mex Jazz) sound a bit better. What would you recommend ?

    A Sadowsky Outboard Preamp or the J-Retro Preamp ?

    At the moment I´m more pro the Sadowsky because I don`t want to mess around in my bass...

    Best regards,

  2. Copycat

    Copycat Supporting Member

    Nov 14, 2000
    Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    I have the Sadowsky outboard, and I use it with a passive Warwick Streamer Standard fretless and my Vintage 4 Lull. It's amazing. I've used with a number of basses, both passive and active, and it has done wonders for the tone of each. I also wanted to point out that Fodera just came out with an outboard stomp-box style preamp. Check out Musictoyz.com (I seem to be promoting them a lot lately) and check it out as well. The cost is about the same as the Sadowsky, and both Roger S. and Vinnie Fodera are respected, high-end NYC bass builders. The Sadowsky has bass boost, treble boost and volume. The Fodera has a midrange control as well, I believe. So it's worth looking into at the very least. Good luck.
  3. The Sadowsky subtly articulates the sound rather than changing it drastically. In other words, it makes it sound better while still sounding passive. The J Retro has a mid control, and allows cuts as well as boosts. I have never used one (Steve Barr won't give me one free...well, I haven't asked him, to be honest, but he's an intelligent guy would probably wouldn't give me one free even if I asked nicely :D . Anyway, I don't have a jazz bass. ), but I guess it is a sound altering device. The Sadowsky only boosts.

    The Sadowsky now comes as a stomp box with added balanced DI. I have just bought one, being a Sadowsky addict. It sounds just like the original preamp with the advantage of being floor based rather than dangling inconveniently from your belt or strap.
  4. Dude

    Dude Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2000
    Owner: The Dude Pit Forum (closed) Producer: School of Bass
    Nice try there Andy!!
  5. Brooks


    Apr 4, 2000
    Middle East
    Just a few notes - J-Retro does not require any modifications to the bass, same as the Sadowski. Also, there is a version called U-Retro that has identical features but is not pre-wired to a control plate. This version can be fitted to most bass guitars without modification. In other words, you don't need a Jazz bass to use U-Retro.
    Personally, I went for J-Retro for my Jazz because of the variable mid cut/boost, which Sadowski doesn't have.
    Final note...I am not sure it's worth it to put a $250 preamp into a $300 bass....
  6. Dude

    Dude Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2000
    Owner: The Dude Pit Forum (closed) Producer: School of Bass
    It's worth every penny...just ask Dave Siff about the MIM Jazz I sold him with J-Retro.
  7. jazzbass1


    Dec 2, 2000
    The J-Retro is worth every penny, I haven't tried the Sadowsky preamp, I'm sure it's a great product, but the J-Retro installs in your bass with little to no hassle, and hot-rods the hell out of it!
  8. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    Interesting topic!

    I recently bought a MIM Jazz, pretty much as a second bass for now, eventually becoming a "project" bass. And, I've read some of the comments about how well Dave Siff's Jazz plays and sounds. So, I've been intrigued...

    You mention that it takes "little effort" to install a J-Retro. What specifically do I need to know and what skills are required? (ie: soldering, screwing, wiring, etc...)

    What tools will I need to perform the minor surgery?

    And, where can I get a J-Retro?
  9. Dude

    Dude Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2000
    Owner: The Dude Pit Forum (closed) Producer: School of Bass

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