What are some good clean sounding preamps?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Salizander, Sep 18, 2006.

  1. Salizander


    Oct 28, 2004
    Like the title says, "What are some good clean sounding preamps?" I play a mim jazz with emg's and love tube grit & grind but what I've really always have been gravitating towards & wanting is just a good clean, clean almost completely sterile (without the bad tone connotations commonly associated with that word) sounding preamp. So far probably the closest I've come would be with SWR & what would generally be considered their classic sound. I woulldn't necessarily mind going back to SWR but I was just looking for a few other ideas or thoughts. (I also prefer using an outboard rack compressor as well.)
  2. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    epifani quest ii preamp. like i've said with hyperbole extended, "like a semi-parametric eq loaded avalon u5". there are a few floating about here and ebay, so they're not hard to find. also pretty affordable as well.

    if you need a touch of the tube stuff, yet like the hifi, demeter's HBP-1 is a great match. as is aguilar's db680.
  3. steveb98

    steveb98 [acct disabled - multiple aliases]

    Mar 15, 2006
    Venice, CA
    Alembic F2B is nice clean Fender Dual Showman sound.
  4. svtb15

    svtb15 Inactive

    Mar 22, 2004
    Austin,TX - McKinney,TX - NY,NY, - Nashville,TN
    I play it all. Whatever works for the gig. Q+
    The first that come to mind are Alembic F1X , Alembic F2B, Demeter, Avalon, Yamaha PB1, Presonus Eureka. I love my Alembic F2B.. Clean yet round and very easy to use.. There are no bad sounds in that piece.
  5. Totally agree with the Alembic's and the Avalon (because I've tried them), but my money went to a BBE BMax and I haven't looked back. Definitely not as modern as the SWR tone, but tight and clean.
  6. Tony G

    Tony G Supporting Member

    Jan 20, 2006

  7. The SWR Interstellar Overdrive or Grand Prix are in this catagory.
  8. Salizander


    Oct 28, 2004
    Looking at BassCentral.com & BassTasters, I think I like the Alembic, SWR & Demeter the best which seemed to be in the same general price range too. To my ears I always thought active Emg's always worked particularly well with SWR preamps, but I really liked the simplicity of the Demeter, then again I've always heard so much great stuff about the Alembics.... Ah, decisions, decisions... I'm sure all those choices would be great though. Thanks for all your opinions & experience. I really appreciate all your time!
  9. silky smoove

    silky smoove Supporting Member

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    My vote would go towards an Avalon U5.... I absolutely love that preamp.
  10. Interceptor


    Mar 29, 2005
    Madison, WI
    Take a listen to the Low End True Voice on Basstasters. I just picked one up in a trade, and like what it does as a clean preamp. Forward sounding mids, tight and controlled low end. It mates really well with an active bass.
  11. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    BBE Max is very very quick and punchy. :D
    I have used an SWR 350 for several years and love it, but the BBE is a
    better pre. It is more flexible and has scads of features. The only thing
    I don't like is the compressor. It is "slow" or lumpy sounding. It has a
    kind of "swell" to it on the attack onset that bugs me. Believe it or not,
    my old tech21 compactor (with the right settings to avoid noise) kicks
    the BBE Max compressor's Kiester but good!!! :bassist:
  12. arbitrary

    arbitrary Supporting Member

    Oct 24, 2005
    Boston, MA
    I'm really getting a kick out of my Alembic F-1X

  13. That's quite the pre. I'll be curious to see if the Bass Buddy I'm getting is even in the same ballpark as the Alembic.

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