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Preamp Pedals - Mesa Boogie Subway Plus

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So I'm sat here in the man cave surrounded by 3,200 watts of amplification which in the face of yet another lockdown is almost worthless and I got to thinking (dangerous I know) that it might be more practical in the future to have a preamp in a pedal format and either a powered cab or a cab plus power amp setup. I've been down this road many times before, but looking back, it strikes me that this setup has certain advantages especially when it comes to recording. I'm particularly taken with the Mesa Subway Plus that looks like a bit of a Swiss army knife. Anybody here using one of these? I'm thinking (again, dangerous) that given the recent sale of Mesa to Gibson, it might be worth diving in before some accountant at Gibson HQ decides they are uneconomic to produce.

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I think that having a preamp pedal is always a great option. To me it was hard to jump into these because I'm an amp geek and I love my amps. But I have to admit that it was the best decision. I can play in any pub always knowing how I sound, getting my favourite preamp similar to the amp that I like without having to take my amp with me. I go to the studio and I just take my preamp. I can play using IEMs with just the preamp. 

It is not like the real thing, but it's portable and sounds awesome. And the Subway+ is an amazing preamp pedal. You won't regret it  

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I've gone the same way.

Now I'm just purchasing good quality pre amp pedals and that gives flexibility to connect to whatever power stage I want - powered cab, class a/b head and cab or class d head and cab via the return loop.

This way I can buy a new 'amp' at a fraction of the cost, just by buying the preamp as the power stage is the same for them all.

I must say though how impressed by the pre amps I am. I have the ampeg scr di and once you get used to it is is superb! Really good sound and flexibility.

I also got an ashdown original and imo it's better than the ones in all their heads. Much clearer and punchier, and the drive is a proper drive. The ABMs drive on full is similar to this on '1'.

The beauty of pre amp pedals is I can just put it in my bass case and connect to anything. Either just use in ears, connect to FOH and monitor, use a house amp via return or just go inline, or take my power amp.

I've a vt to come, then when I want to expand or change I'll buy some others.

The mesa is on my radar. Let us all know if you go ahead.

 

 

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I’ve had a few and if you want clean, flexible and a solid platform for using existing pedals a Basswitch preamp is hard to overlook. I’ve owned one since 2012/2013 and it’s got a host of features which made it and continue to make it a great all rounder.

Twin inputs and two channels A/B - one passive, one runs into the eq (plug in one bass and you can switch between channel A or B) One input has an impedance switch for piezos so good for an upright etc.

dual fx loops - one series, one parallel (series is always on, parallel is switchable via footswitch), clean blend on the switchable fx loop. It also functions as a clean boost or can boost the fx in that loop - and it has a phase switch!

‘Studio grade’ Four band eq with dual semi parametric eq, DI which runs via a transformer , Mute switch etc etc etc 

It’ll also drive a power amp or powered cab and can take 9-24v power and does internal trickery to filter and stabilise the power coming into it. 
 

Ive used it live for years, my fiddle player used it for a while when deciding on which preamp to get and honestly while this is a bass DI I think it sounded better than the preamp she ended up buying - likely due to the semi eq, the impedance switch and the quality DI! 
 

It’s a lot of pedal!

 

image.jpeg.5b38e91d11fd55d63771baf718b64197.jpeg

Edited by krispn

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I have the D800+ amp rather than the preamp. I found this a very good demo (in spite of the language barrier) and I think it is representative of the tones I can get from the amp. I tried some of his settings, as well as my VT pedal which he demos as part of his signal chain in the video. BC, I used my D800 (non plus) at those gigs were space was at a premium, along with my IEMs and it worked surprisingly well. I did miss the thump of a cab behind me, but it doesn't take long to adjust. Hope you find this helpful:

 

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