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TheGreek

Daft question?

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There's probably a sensible answer to this but...

Why don't companies like John East and Status sell their pre-amps as a pedal???

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Aaaand... why don't basses come with compressors on board instead of equalisers?

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Oooh....Imagine a Wal pedal with the pick attack filter. I'd bite their hand off. I would 

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Probably because unless you have a true bypass bass the existing pots and tone controls already colour the output -  does a Sadowsky pedal make your Fenderesque Jazz bass really sound like a Sadowsky ? just thinking, I've never tried the Sadowsky pedal, but I have the Alien one and whilst it's a useful boost it is a bit too subtle and doesn't do anything to my ear that the zoom B3 couldn't do and the B3 can do so much more

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If you can find a comparison of the Nathan East pedal and a ‘normal’ bass vs the NNE2 - it may give you an idea of if it makes much difference and also if there is a market for it should be my thoughts

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2 hours ago, Aidan63 said:

Probably because unless you have a true bypass bass the existing pots and tone controls already colour the output -  does a Sadowsky pedal make your Fenderesque Jazz bass really sound like a Sadowsky ? just thinking, I've never tried the Sadowsky pedal, but I have the Alien one and whilst it's a useful boost it is a bit too subtle and doesn't do anything to my ear that the zoom B3 couldn't do and the B3 can do so much more

But even an onboard preamp will be coloured by what pickups are in the bass (as well as the wood, if you're in to all that). I always use the Sadowsky preamp with my passive Fenders. Does ot make them sound like a Sadowsky? Probably not, but I think it makes them sound 'better'.

Maybe the reason they don't make outboard preamps is simply because they want to keep them for their instruments- If you want a Status preamp, you have to buy a Status.

John East used to make a pedal preamp- the STMP-01.  Maybe it wasn't a big seller?

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I don't think that a preamp would ever make one bass sound like another. The choice between preamps, onboard or in a pedal, is worthwhile because of the varying behaviours of each design. The frequency centres, Q, and level of boost or attenuation will vary, as will the features available. Some are no more than bass-boost only, some are 3 or four band semi-parametric, some have switchable, set boost or cuts, some are flat when centred, some introduce an inherent colour.

I rarely bother with onboard pres because they are invariably limited due to space and power limitations, not to mention that I prefer my subtractive and additive EQ either side of a compressor. That and I only once have come across a situation where a buffered signal would have been handy, but a passive DI box solved that!

A 3-band parametric with switchable bell/shelf on the high and low would cover the majority of preamp responses out there, add in variable high- and low-pass filters with resonance controls, and perhaps a couple of additional, switchable bands and you could replicate just about any preamp out there, which is generally how I prefer to do it. However, if I was after, say, a Wal preamp reponse, there would be a lot of sense in having one either on board or in a pedal, for ease of use. Moreover, I really like the old Fender amp pre and the Pultec EQs. Ignoring that they also have valve make-up stages, as much as I might learn my way around a parametric, there is something appealing about the simplicity and vibe of them which makes versions of them worthwhile to have, to me at least.

What I'm lockdown rambling around to is that the preamp and bass are two separate entities, and the pre is ultimately some degree of pre-set parametric. The reductions in functionality will be designed for space and practicality in line with the maker's thinking, which give the pre a certain voice in use. Applying that pre to any bass won't make it another bass, but the response of the pre can be used to alter the voice of said bass in the same way it alters the voice of any bass.

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16 hours ago, 2pods said:

Oooh....Imagine a Wal pedal with the pick attack filter. I'd bite their hand off. I would 

You could suggest it to Paul Herman!

...he'd say "No!" but you could still suggest it! ;) 

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5 hours ago, Aidan63 said:

Probably because unless you have a true bypass bass the existing pots and tone controls already colour the output -  does a Sadowsky pedal make your Fenderesque Jazz bass really sound like a Sadowsky ? just thinking, I've never tried the Sadowsky pedal, but I have the Alien one and whilst it's a useful boost it is a bit too subtle and doesn't do anything to my ear that the zoom B3 couldn't do and the B3 can do so much more

I have multiple basses with Sadowsky preamps (including one Sadowsky!) as well as the pedal and can confirm that, while there are small sonic differences, the Sad pedal really does give your passive bass a Sadowsky vibe. Probably to do with the specific freq boosts, but it just breathes new life into my vintage Fenders!

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