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Pedal Bass Preamps driving a power amp..

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by pbass6811, Feb 6, 2013.

  1. pbass6811

    pbass6811 Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2008
    Indy, IN
    Who's got this kind of setup and what do you think about it? I've got an Aguilar Tone Hammer driving a Crown XTi power amp. It sounds really good, but I'm really saving up for a custom bass pedal preamp from [sfx]Sound. I want something a bit cleaner and more flexible and Max's custom work looks AMAZING! I saw a YouTube clip of the Tech 21 VT Bass Deluxe and it sounded pretty strong, clean, & punchy, AND it has an F/X loop. I know there's a ton more good pedal pre's out that can drive a power amp. So, who's got what?
  2. Aguilar Tone Hammer is the only Pre I've found that will push my Crown XLS2000 to sufficient levels without having to turn the gain or eq stages up. I've tried a few others, I've tried gain, and/or EQ's and nothing really let me get the clean gain stage and full use of my EQ controls into a Poweramp like the Aguilar TH. I think if you have a lower sensitivity than the 1.4v my Crown is looking for any Bass Preamp/Pedal would work well. If you want an eden, get the WTDI, if you want modern ovrdrv/dist tones try the BDDI or M-80, if you want the SVT sound just get a VT(My current GAS inducing piece =VTDI ) . I also like the modular approach, and that all "My Tones" are contained in my pedalboard (I use a PA cab onstage)

    I would love to fill a pedalboard with a PRE/DI/Pedal from 10 diff brands! A nice looper for different sounds at a stomp. Kinda like a "all-analog amp modeler" Thats my dream.

    Aguilar-Tone Hammer
    EWS-Tri Logic
    Mesa Boogie-V Twin
    3 Leaf-Enabler

    That would be awesome :bassist:
  3. flobass


    Sep 15, 2009
    Hi pbass6811,

    it sounds like you are looking for the BASSWITCH IQ DI. It is exactly what you described. A clean, warm and very flexible preamp-pedal that can easily drive any amplifier.
    It has a +/- 15 db preamp and a 4 band semi para-eq that works just beautiful to create amazing sounds. A serial AND parallel FX loop, tuner out, amazing sounding studio quality DI, ... Check it out on http://basswitch.com

    For driven sounds, I agree with mowburger:
    Hope that helps! Let us know, what it's gonna be... :bassist:
    TonyP- likes this.
  4. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion

    Aug 25, 2010
    The Great Midwest
    Meatsmoke Pre period close thread.
  5. loopee

    loopee Supporting Member

    May 12, 2009
    Surrey, B.C. Canada
    You forgot DHA

  6. I sic my trace EQ pedal on BDDI Deluxe and all is good.
  7. SquareWaves


    Mar 16, 2011
    Tronographic Rusty Box. It's modeled after the Traynor TS50B and is known for it's classy overdrive.
    jonpaulbassist likes this.
  8. pbass6811

    pbass6811 Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2008
    Indy, IN
    Hey Flobass,

    I checked out the Basswitch unit. Definitely looks like it has all the goods! I'm going to try to get a bit more in-depth info on it. I think it's a pretty penny, but so is the custom sfx pre that I may have Max build for me. I also found the AMT Electronics BC-1. It sounds pretty stellar also. My only issue with the AMT is the DI out is 1/4", not XLR. Not a deal breaker by any means, but just a bit of an oddity, and the price is pretty reasonable.

    I need to look up the Meatsmoke Pre & the Tronographic Rusty box...Thanks, guys.
  9. jphovercraft


    Oct 21, 2012
    I'm doing that with my VT Bass pedal. VERY happy with the results.
  10. dave2


    Feb 10, 2007
    +1 on the Tone Hammer pedal driving a Crown XTi power amp. The TH was the best at this feat of the 3 I tried 1) TH 2) EBS Micro Bass II 3) Tri-Logic preamp version 1. I still have a SansAmp ParaDriver to test out with the Crown.

    I want a mute button for live situations and the TH did not have this so I sold it. I still have the other 2 pedals which I may use in the studio.

    The best preamp I have found to connect to my Crown XTi 4000 is a Demeter HPB-1 rack unit. It has a mute button, balanced 1/4" out, and XLR out. And this combination kicks major butt soundwise!!

    Good luck in your search.

  11. Lowbrow

    Lowbrow Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2008
    Pittsburgh PA!
    I've gotten some pretty useable experimental results running VT Bass>Tone Hammer>Effect loop return on my 400RB or Walkabout. The VT I use to provide most of the tone shaping, the TH set to AGS for a bit of warmth and very slight OD.
  12. sunbeast

    sunbeast Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2006
    Los Angeles, CA
    What do you use to control the Volume when using the Walkabout? The Master Volume on the Walkabout (and most Mesa amps) is pre-FX Loop, so I've never really been able to use it as a power amp for my Rusty Box (which doesn't have a Master Volume when in Preamp mode) as it will just be full-on volume. Most bass amps I've had have the Master Volume located after the FX loop, so it isn't an issue- the Mesas have been the only exception for me...
  13. Lowbrow

    Lowbrow Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2008
    Pittsburgh PA!
    That chain you can attenuate output with the pedals' volume controls. I cite mainly in direct response to OP: it is totally possible, pretty useable. Not practical for me as too many knobs are in play and after a bit of diddling I go back to a simpler setup.
  14. melodiaopus

    melodiaopus Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2007
    Austin, TX
    Okay, I'm in the infant stage if my pedal knowledge. Is it necessary for me to have a DI if I play through a TC Electronics RH750. I would like to have a fatter tone through the amp. I was thinking about the rusty box, but mostly for its OD sound. I guess I could just go with the MXR Blow torch and save some cash. The Sadowsky really has my eye, but I'm worried that it useless since I have a amp head rather than just a power amp.
  15. sunbeast

    sunbeast Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2006
    Los Angeles, CA
    Unfortunately the Rusty Box used as a pre doesn't have a Volume control (the Volume control it has only functions when used as an effect rather than a preamp). Most power amps have some sort of input controls, so its only really an issue when using one of the rare amps like the Walkabout where the Master Volume cannot be used. Not sure whether most other pedal pres have a useable Master Volume in preamp mode...
  16. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    The TC head already has a DI.
    There are pedals that can fatten your tone, but it has nothing to do with whether they also work as a DI (or have "DI" in the name).
    The Sadowsky is a pedal with several functions. Don't be caught up in the word "preamp" attached to it, because that word means so many different things that it is almost meaningless.
  17. Dang! It's like TB knows the questions I want to ask.. I was just thinking about doing this when I got home from work in the morning. Right now I'm in the market for a new head.. eying the Streamliner 900, because it's awesome.. enough said. But I've been really interested in some of these pre/DI/EQ machines into a power amp.

    I've narrowed it down to 3:

    3Leaf Enabler
    Lehle Basswitch
    Verrellen Meatsmoke Pre

    I'm not terribly concerned with price, has anyone compared these three? I play a Stingray through a (soon to be) Greenboy Dually T. Would like to have plenty of clean headroom, that's my one catch with the Meatsmoke. The videos I saw all had a fair amount of wool.. is it capable of sounding that good clean?
  18. pbass6811

    pbass6811 Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2008
    Indy, IN
    Hey. Can't speak about the others, but I did use the Basswitch for a while. It is a fantastic preamp! It is super clean and it's pretty flexible. The main reason I stopped using it and sold it is because I go through "I want a preamp/power amp setup. I'm gonna use it for a while, then I'm gonna go back to a regular amp" phases. I'm now in my "regular amp" phase. Trust me, I've done this several times. Lol!

    Anyways, the Basswitch is killa' and if you decide you want to go that route, I'm sure you'll be very pleased. I'm sure the 3Leaf and the Verellen are also gonna be awesome. Honestly, I don't think you can go wrong here...
  19. Lonnybass

    Lonnybass Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2000
    Minneapolis by way of Chicago
    Endorsing Artist: Pedulla Basses
    Read my detailed reviews of the 3Leaf Enabler. :)

  20. BIG97BEN


    Sep 12, 2011
    Richmond VA
    I've been using the 3leaf Enabler and it doing great. It has gain and volume controls so you can adjust for different sensitivity and also control volume (if running through amp with pre- volume control). On top of that it also has a headphone amp with aux in so you can practice quietly. It is a fairly versatile preamp.
    Lonnybass likes this.