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Tech 21 Rackmount Preamps

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by DrumsAndBass, Feb 12, 2013.

  1. I'm looking for a -rackmount- solid state preamp that is Solid State. Before I contact Tech 21, does anybody have any info on this new offering from Tech 21 ?

    I'm also curious about the differences between this new one and the RPM. I'm pursuing a deep, clean, warm and round tone for Reggae.

    Thank You.
  2. CrackBass


    Aug 10, 2004
    If it's anything like the VT pedal it'll sound great. I wasn't aware that they made the rack mount version, but it's about time. Reggae shouldn't be a problem.
  3. AdamR


    Sep 24, 2007
    Bethel CT
    the VT rack wont be available till April/May
  4. truecanadian04


    May 4, 2011
    I use tech 21 RBI and I love it. I tried some of there other products and there all solid. Just a preference really. I would stick with the rpm or rbi because that have been road tested by so many.
  5. Thank you. And it's nice to support a great company like Tech 21.
    Do you find that you can dial in enough low end on the RBI or RPM ? I see that the RPM has a mid sweep.

    *I just want to get my questions in (and thanks for the feedback) before this thread is moved down the page because it's difficult to find threads and posts that show love for Solid State, Rackmount bass preamps.*
  6. AdamR


    Sep 24, 2007
    Bethel CT
    Theres lots of love on here for Tech 21. If you have ever used any of the pedals the rack stuff is pretty much the same

    RPM = ParaDriver
    RBI = BDDI
    VTRM = VT Bass

    I wouldnt worry about there being problems with the VT rack when it comes out seeing the the pedal has been out for yeas. Same thing just in a rack.
  7. MJ_Sotti

    MJ_Sotti formerly "Mike in Chicago" Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2011
    I've got a RBI and I love it. Very nice. I'm a little more used to the VT though, and when they bring that out i'll be selling the RBI. Keep me in mind. They have a suggested "reggae" setting in the manual.
  8. Hey I've got a question - I just got off the phone with Tech 21 -nice people. I asked why the bass knob on both the RPM and RBI is centered at 80 hz. He said that it's because the frequencies below that are not musical. He also said that both units are high passed to not let the sub low frequencies through etc. But won't we be missing out on some low notes ? - because a low E -for example- is around 40 hz. I claim ignorance on this one, it's kind of a head scratcher for me.
  9. You would think so.
    Truth is those low fundamental frequencys would rattle your bones. You would need a hell of a bass amp to put out lows like that.
    Those frequencys are dampened to allow for the overtones to be heard, otherwise its all mud.
  10. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member


    It's funny that a lot of bassists who move to 5 string (or otherwise have a low B) suddenly think they have to find a rig that can handle 30Hz (the low B note). Not true. Many bass rigs, including the renowned SVT, won't even produce 40Hz (low E), but you can still hear those lowest notes just fine because of harmonic overtones. Interestingly, the 2nd harmonic for low E occurs at 80Hz (60Hz for low B).

    And the way psychoacoustics works, your ear will fill in that missing fundamental. That's not quite as much fun as having your pants flap from the actual fundamentals, but those lowest frequencies will gobble your headroom and also tend to muddy things up on stage, blurring with the kick drum and whatnot.
  11. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Anyway: love my RBI and RPM. And now I'm GASsing for the VT-RM.
  12. WHy does that page have Paradriver DI as a heading but it is all about the VT?
  13. groovaholic

    groovaholic The louder the better. Supporting Member

    Sep 19, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI
    This is a good point -- the RBI was my "go to" preamp when I played 4-string basses, but I was always fighting it when I got my Dingwalls.

    I did an A/B comparison with a Trace Elliot V-Type pre and the Trace had a whole 'nother octave of low-end going on.

    My vote; this HPF design feature should be defeatable via an internal switch. For me, at least, it was an absolute deal-breaker.
  14. chienmort


    Aug 15, 2012
    Lack of a high pass filter is a speaker breaker for me.
  15. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    *Sigh* One more rackmount for me to buy! Will it ever end?

  16. Me too!;)

    Excelent point about the SVT, I couln't have said it better.

    The VT is supposed to emulate the SVT, it only makes sence that the frequency curve would be similar.

    For those reading this, the VT has a huge amount of lows, but its the right kind of lows.
  17. 5 string into RBI into subwoofer PA has a huge bottom B. It must be highpassed lower than 60hz.
  18. groovaholic

    groovaholic The louder the better. Supporting Member

    Sep 19, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI
    I was running my RBI through a Peavey Kosmos subharmonic generator and a QSC PLX 3102.

    100 Hz and up went to a pair of 410 cabs, stacked vertically.
    150 Hz and below went to a custom 215 cab loaded with Emince Kappa Pro 15LFs.

    My 4-string basses sounded HUGE through that setup, but the low-A from my Dingwall just wasn't well-served.

    Swapping to the Trace Elliot made the Kosmos unnecessary.

    Don't get me wrong, I think the RBI is a great piece of gear, but I think it'd be better if they had a 4/5 string switch (like GK) that would re-voice the low end.
  19. rjc309


    May 14, 2008
    This is the first I'm hearing about a HPF on the RBI. Any idea what that curve looks like?
  20. BillyB_from_LZ

    BillyB_from_LZ Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2000
    A rack-mounted VT preamp would be even better if it had the programming capability of the PSA 1.1 or some number of presets a least.

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