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SKB Stage Five Board...good board or pass?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Kromwarp, May 2, 2010.


  1. Kromwarp

    Kromwarp

    Sep 16, 2008
    Greater Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Master Luthier: Ironclad Bass Guitars
    I have a chance to pick one of these up for more than half price off. I read the reviews, but it seems like most guys were a bit underwhelmed with it. The only thing in common that all of them had was they had problems with the EHX Holy Grail, which I do not run. So, is this board pretty good with the self power, or should I look elsewhere? Any advice is appreciated
     
  2. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    The powering in self-powered boards is a joke IMO. I wouldn't take one for free.
     
  3. They probably aren't worth it to buy new, but used you can find pretty good deals on them. Look for the PS-45 also. I had the PS-45 and it served me well, although it was big and pretty heavy so I ended up downsizing.
     
  4. Kromwarp

    Kromwarp

    Sep 16, 2008
    Greater Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Master Luthier: Ironclad Bass Guitars
    Yeah, I definatley would not buy one new, but for $150, its probably not a bad deal. My only concern is reading about the powered inputs for pedal power, it seemed like there were only certain spots where certain brands of pedals could go. I run all 9v pedals and the brands that I run are EHX, Planet Waves, Dunlop, Hartke, DOD, Digitech and Boss, so I'm just wondering if this board will power them all
     
  5. What do you use? Not being snarky or trying to derail- I need to conjure up a board & don't know what exactly to do w/regard to power. I'd like to power 4 or 5 boxes & have one or two outlets for the amp & whatever.
     
  6. rockstarbassist

    rockstarbassist Banned

    Apr 30, 2002
    The Woodlands, TX
    Endorsing Artist: HCAF
    I looked at those also, but ended up getting a trade for a PB Jr. which is in-transit. I'm just going to attach a power strip either to the top or underside of the PB Jr. as I'd have to have at least 2 PedalPower 2+ units to do what I need b/c of mA requirements to get some of the boxes to run right.
     
  7. warwick.hoy

    warwick.hoy

    Aug 20, 2006
    Spokane, WA.
    Beta Tester: Source Audio.
    A buddy of mine has the SKB-45 powered board. I can't comment on the powering system but the thing is too un-necessarily big and awkward for me to consider. With the lid on it's the size of a suitcase.
     
  8. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    I use a mix of different devices depending on my pedalboard arrangement du jour. Typically I use a Godlyke Powerall for my pedals that run on 9V center-negative and that don't have ground loop noise/hum problems; and I use either an isolated-outlet brick like the PPII or Fuel Tank Jr., or one/two individual wall warts, for pedals that are incompatible with the daisy chain.

    Seriously though to the OP, don't waste your money on a powered pedalboard. Invariably you will end up with one or more pedals that are not compatible with it, and you will have to buy an external power supply unit anyway.
     
  9. Ha, I WISH my board were the size of a normal suitcase! I built my own with a 19" rack for my compressor under a second tier, and I've been hauling it around in a large rolling luggage bag. The dimensions are 18" deep by 24" wide if I remember right, and it's about 9" tall with pedals on the second tier.

    Anyway, to the OP, you will probably be better off with a separate board and power supply. That way you have more modularity and versitility. The Pedaltrain boards are pretty popular around here, and it's way easier to build your own than you might think.

    As for power supplies, Voodoo Labs Pedal Power are pretty standard, but for $60 or so less, the BBE SupaCharger is fantastic. I use that on my board and I have never been happier.
     
  10. Bardolphus

    Bardolphus Put some stank on it... Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2007
    Austin, Texas
    So, what exactly is sub-standard on the powered boards? Not meant in sarcasm but I'm venturing into effects and like to ask why rather than just being told "oh those are no good." Sorry for the semi-hijack but I thought it was still on topic.
     
  11. Robertron

    Robertron

    Feb 12, 2010
    NewYork, NY
    +1 :bassist:
     
  12. warwick.hoy

    warwick.hoy

    Aug 20, 2006
    Spokane, WA.
    Beta Tester: Source Audio.
    I can't comment specifically on the SKB boards but the idea is to look for versatility (does the SKB have that?) and to keep noise to a minimum.

    Does the power supply offer output options that can accommodate the different voltage requirements of different pedals (Boss PSA 9v or ACA 12 volt, Some Electro-Harmonix 24v,...so on and so forth). Does it provide enough current to power all of your pedals?

    The noise issue can be dealt with by using a power supply with isolated outputs (does the SKB have that?).
     
  13. Bardolphus

    Bardolphus Put some stank on it... Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2007
    Austin, Texas
    Gotcha...thanks!
     
  14. warwick.hoy

    warwick.hoy

    Aug 20, 2006
    Spokane, WA.
    Beta Tester: Source Audio.
    I should probably mention that noise issues can be any number of things. Using a power supply with isolated outputs is just one of many ways to combat noise.
     
  15. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    Agreed. Check out the article about noise in my FAQ, especially the link in there to a Rane web page. In the case of the power supply "cause of noise", one of the most common noise sources is a leak or loop between the ground wiring of one pedal and the audio path of another; this can happen when their power supplies are not isolated. This is why people will say using a PPII/similar isolated unit reduced the noise from their pedals--it wasn't "better quality power", but isolation (blocking ground loops).

    Another reason not to buy a powered pedalboard is the construction of their power supplies and wiring is invariably cheap and flimsy, no matter how sturdy the board itself appears. So the power supply will go bad at some point, and if you aren't able to fix it yourself then it will cost more to fix than to replace. If you instead buy a separate power supply module, then if anything ever goes bad on it, you haven't lost your entire pedalboard.
     

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