Preamp/DI recommendation

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by cadet, Apr 16, 2012.

  1. cadet

    cadet Guest

    Aug 12, 2008
    Eugene, OR
    I'm looking to get an all-in-one preamp and DI. I'm looking for something in a pedal/box format. I've been reading a ton of threads and am seriously considering the Tone Hammer. Whatever I get I want to be able to drive a power amp off the 1/4" out in addition to sending the mic out to the PA. I run an IEM rig most of the time but would like to use the same box when taking a power section along.

    I'd probably like some eq on the unit but don't need effects loops, compression, etc. Nothing is a deal breaker though, other than enough output to drive a power amp.

    Are there any boxes other than the Tone Hammer I should be looking at that will also be able to drive a power amp without an additional gain stage?

    I'm shooting for sub 300 as far as budget but have wiggle room. New or used is ok.

  2. oldcatfish


    Jan 8, 2011
    There are others including the Tech21 Paradriver that would fit you needs (I'm pretty sure that it will drive a power amp). The Tone Hammer is great though, so if you like don't need to look further.
  3. cadet

    cadet Guest

    Aug 12, 2008
    Eugene, OR
    Thanks! I've played the BDDI and wasn't a complete fan. But I forgot about the para. I found the BDDI a little noisy. I also don't need a ton of sculpting; my bass as-is is pretty close to the sound I'm looking for. The BDDI could get pretty radical.
  4. to help with your search check out the: Tech 21 VT Bass Deluxe., EBS Microbass II, Eden WTDI and The MXR unit (forget it's name) are all good contenders with the Tone Hammer, each with their own sort of flavour
  5. Quackhead


    Jan 17, 2012
    Elk Grove, CA
    The Eden WTDI is awesome for the price. I got mine for about $160 new.

    If you like Eden tone, this is a great product. And if you like to play with compression, the compressor on this pedal is pretty nice. I don't know of any other pedal pre/DI boxes that have a compressor.
  6. gillento


    Oct 15, 2005
    Luxembourg, Europe
    Nordstrand pickups
  7. cadet

    cadet Guest

    Aug 12, 2008
    Eugene, OR
    I've never played an Eden. How would you characterize the "Eden tone?"
  8. cadet

    cadet Guest

    Aug 12, 2008
    Eugene, OR
    Thanks. I've been interested in the basswitch but have had a hard time justifying the price so far. It looks really great though especially for multi-bass gigs.
  9. I have also been using the WTDI for about a month now. I do like the compressor.
  10. gillento


    Oct 15, 2005
    Luxembourg, Europe
    Nordstrand pickups
    It is!
    For a year now, it is the heart and brains of my pedal board.
  11. Lichtaffen


    Sep 29, 2008
    Rhode Island
    I just bought a Sadowsky preamp/DI and I'm loving it, but I don't think it can drive an amp necessarily. The Tone Hammer would be the direction I would steer you. Supposedly, the Tone Hammer 350 and 500 amps are the preamp from the pedal with a digital power amp built in.
  12. Pickebass

    Pickebass Supporting Member

    Jul 12, 2004
    San Antonio, TX
    I've tried alot of preamps since I use an IP and have gotten kind of accustomed to having everything on the floor. Here's a quick overview of what I have or had and opinions

    1. EBS Microbass- Very versatile. Can be "dry" sounding. EQ is very useful as well as the tube simulator for adding warmth. You could go DI out or the 1/4 output and drive an amp

    2. Sansamp Paradriver- Nice sound and useful eq. It is one of my favorite if I'm NOT using EQ. Sounds good with Piezo pickups and also with a variety of basses. A good tool to have in your bag

    3. MXR M80- I like the EQ alot. Somewhat SWR like to my ears. Very clean eq and I actually like the distortion on this unit. I can see why some don't. It can sound a little glossy and get lost in a mix. Using mids with the distortion makes a big difference

    4. Sadowsky DI- Great sounding DI. I love it, but it is definitely the sadowsky sound. I play active basses and a sadowsky bass so it is overkill for me

    5. Eden WTDI- Just picked this up a week ago. Really gets the eden sound. I was really impressed. It is kind of mid scooped. You definitely need to add mids to cut for some scenarios

    6.Aguilar Tone Hammer- It is really a nice sounding box. The only thing I wish it had was a mute button. I use this 80% of the time and it can drive an amp really well

    7. Sansamp BDDI- It does what it does. It's kinda grindy to my ears. Not the cleanest sound, but it does it's thing well.

    8. Summit Audio- Although not a floor unit, it could be the happy medium you are looking for. Nice tube tone and warmth with no EQ.

    9. Avalon U5- Once again, not a floor unit, but ultra clean.

    My suggestions based on what you are trying to do what be in this order

    1. Summit TD-100
    2. Aguilar Tone Hammer
    3. Sansamp Paradriver
  13. cadet

    cadet Guest

    Aug 12, 2008
    Eugene, OR
    What an awesome run-down, thanks so much! You've hit on a couple I haven't done any reading on... off to the search engine!
  14. +1 for the Tone Hammer, Lots of juice, great sound, love mine.
  15. Another +1 for the Tonehammer. Of the alternatives, I have the most experience with the BDDI, the M80 and the Microbass II. Of those three, I vastly prefer the sound of the Microbass II, but can't really work with the way they designed the two-channels setup. I can't praise the TH enough though, it really is a wonderfully flexible piece of quality gear.

  16. cadet

    cadet Guest

    Aug 12, 2008
    Eugene, OR
    Thanks all. Tone Hammer is on the way.
  17. tech21nyc

    tech21nyc Commercial User

    Aug 17, 2010
    Manufacturer: Tech 21
    Both our SansAmp Bass Driver and Para Driver DI's can be used as transparent preamps by turning the blend control counter-clockwise. With their tone controls at their null points your signal will be flat response.