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Onboard Preamps???

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by jokerjkny, Jan 23, 2002.

  1. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    Hey all,

    i'm thinking of having a bass built for me, since its been sooo hard finding a manufactured one that suits me. so, what are your experiences with the ones out there?

    you got the usual Aguilar and Bartolini. but because i'm in NYC, there's a plethora of other small shop makers like Pensa over at Rudy's, Jimmy's (@ Bass Boutique) Alleva/Coppolo, and of course, the man himself, Sadowsky.

    i'm trying to be a funk guy and probably using a swamp ash body with maple or ebony neck. I've heard the Aguilar is more rock, while the Bart is a bit more versatile and great for jazz. The sadowsky is more outboard, i guess, but still kickbutt.

    but what are your experiences?
  2. Phat Ham

    Phat Ham

    Feb 13, 2000
    IIRC, Sadowsky will install an internal preamp if you send him your bass.

    I have a Bart NTMB-18 in my DP Custom, and its great. But I haven't had any experience with any of the smaller companies. Since you're in NYC, why don't you go visit all of the various shops and get a better feel for what the different preamps sound like. You should also try looking into the U-retro, as its gotten great reviews.
  3. Brendan

    Brendan Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    I hear raves about the Aguilar OBP-1. Nine volt pre-amp that's just killer, nearly any way you slice it.
  4. Laddieo


    Dec 16, 2001
    Actually, you can also run the OBP-1 with a PAIR of batteries for 18V (more headroom). It also can be set up as Vol-Vol-Treb-Bass or Vol-Bal-Treb-Bass.

    I really love the one Spector put in my new NS-2J.
  5. I'm going to have to recommend the J-Retro preamp. I'm sure you've heard about it on this forum and it's a great piece of equipment. It'll bring any bass alive and do more than justice to a bass that already is alive. I threw it, and some Barts, in my MIM fretless and WOW!!!! An incredibly versatile piece of gear! However, being in NY you get to see more of what's out there, especially the smaller "diamond in the rough" pre-amps.

    That being said, all the pre-amps listed so far have all had rave reviews, so it's just a matter of choice. My advice though, especially if you're in to funk, is stay away from only the bass/treble configuration. I guess I like a little midrange honk to get those booties shakin'! :cool:
  6. JimS

    JimS Supporting Member

    Sadowsky preamp can be inboard or outboard. The outboard comes in a couple of version.

    I think it's an amazing preamp. It's simple, superb s/n for recording, sounds great and leaves nothing to be desired.
  7. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    thanks for the help all,

    but do any of these preamps have a certain style, they'd be better suited? i've heard, the Aguilar was best for rock. while others say its best for funk. i want something that's a good medium.

    also, are there any NYC'ers who have experience with the Pensa, Sadowsky, and Alleva/Coppola stuff in a live situation?
  8. JimS

    JimS Supporting Member

    I have used the Sadowsky live and for recording and it's amazing for reasons above.

    I generally would find it hard to believe that Aguilar or any on-board preamp is 'better or worse' for rock than funk or any other style. You determine the style and how good or bad it sounds.
  9. The J-Retro (Jazz Bass style), or U-Retro (universal applicatons) can be used for just about any style you choose. It is extremely versatile, great tone from modern slap to vintage Motown. Do some research here and other boards and I think you'll find a plethora of information about it. Most of really positive. I've got one in my AmStd Jazz Bass and it's Fabulous.

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