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Tube preamp suggestions...

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Mike in Chicago, Jan 16, 2013.

  1. Mike in Chicago

    Mike in Chicago Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2011
    looking for a rack mountable, multi tube preamp. I like traditional tube sound, not hyper distortion or any of that clangy metal type stuff. Buttery tube sound, to push a power amp.

    I've had SVT's and V4b's so won't need that response...I get it.

    And I know the quick answer is start from scratch with a Streamliner 900.

    Any out there I don't know about?
  2. Baird6869

    Baird6869 RIP Gord Downey. A True Canadian Icon. Supporting Member

    Julie's Monique.

    Sounds exactly what you are looking for.
  3. popgadget

    popgadget Supporting Member Commercial User

    Sep 4, 2005
    Eastern, PA USA
    Authorized Greenboy Designs Builder, Scabbey Road
    Demeter HBP-1 is my current favorite. Vintage Yamaha PB-1 is also a great pre, and can often be found for a reasonable price. Alembic F1X gets some love, I like the Demeter better, I ought to sell the Alembic as I don't use it.
  4. Lo-E


    Dec 19, 2009
    Brooklyn, NY
    Yup, the Demeter and both Alembic models have a big following.
  5. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    If you liked the Ampeg sound, an SVP-CL is a VERY awesome preamp.
  6. dincz


    Sep 25, 2010
    Czech Republic
    Is she selling it?
  7. If you are looking for that buttery round full bottomed tube sound I would say the Aguilar DB659.
  8. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    The Alembics are nice if you STUDY them a lot. You have to learn how to tweek it before you can really dial in what you like. It just reacts differently than a lot of preamps. But if you take the time to learn it, it's nice.
  9. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    los angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
  10. LongHairFreak

    LongHairFreak Insert cool nickname? Nobody's given me one yet. Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2006
    Twin Cities - MN
  11. Foz


    Jul 26, 2008
    Jax FL USA
  12. I didn't like the Demeter because it had no tone. It sounded TOO transparent to me.

    The Alembic F1-X I bought instead. I sold it again something like 2 months later. Not what I wanted, though it had some color in the store - just nothing worth noting once I got it home. Oddly, it only has a single tube that's only used for the effects loop anyway. It's not technically a "tube amp" as none of its gain is tube-generated. And what's with the DI being on the FRONT of the pre?

    The newest Ampeg at the time was the SVP-PRO (iirc). I didn't like it - I don't care for graphic EQs on bass amps and there really are too many controls that do too little on them. Seriously, "Drive?" what the $%*& is that for? I heard it do nothing at all! It doesn't even distort! Perhaps I was supposed to crank the bejeezus out of it?

    I tried the SVP-CL and I loved it. But it's hard to find since SOME PEOPLE don't buy anything with rack ears anymore, so Ampeg discontinued it. It goes used for the same price, sometimes MORE, than its MSRP. Good luck finding one on ebay as they get snapped up pretty quick. It's more buttery than the Alembic by a long shot. It sounds like an SVT but without the goodness that the power section adds. A little cleaner, I guess you'd say.

    Them's my $0.02.
  13. iualum


    Apr 9, 2004
    Read Purity or Kern IP-777. Doesn't get any better.
  14. Franklin229


    Jul 25, 2004
    Northeast USA
    Agree-I have an old '70s era F2B and love it. You really don't need to mess with it that much either to get nice tonal variations.
  15. Arjank


    Oct 9, 2007
    Above Amsterdam
    BBE BmaxT :cool:
    Buttery smooth, slightly bottom heavy but crystal clear sound!
    I like the natural compression it provides.
    But don't expect a gritty sound when you bump up the gain, you need to find that somewhere else.
  16. f.c.geil


    May 12, 2011
    Top three choices (IMO), in order: Jule Amps Monique, Ampeg SVP-CL, A Designs REDDI. I know, the REDDI is technically a DI, but it does have a preamp out AFTER the tube, so it is still a very tubey preamp.

    I have to add that I think it's hilarious how so many people will denigrate a unit for NOT doing what the OP said he DOESN'T want. Am I the only one who reads the entire thread before answering.
  17. N.F.A.


    Jun 25, 2009
    In a blue funk
    Alembic, Jules and REDDI.
  18. HitByABlimp


    Apr 10, 2007
    My personal custom build pre-amp in a couple of months :D.
    Awesome tube sound (headroom preferred, no distortion!), 2 x 12AX7, active 4-band tube EQ, tuner-out, parallel blendable FX-loop, DI (post-pre), 2x XLR balanced + 1x jack unbalanced outputs, (foot)switchable mute, EQ and FX-loop.