Unique Pre-amp pedals for pedalboard rig

Discussion in 'Gear & Equipment' started by Wrecklyss, Jun 27, 2020.

  1. Emperoff

    Emperoff Hasta la vista, Baby Contributor

    Messages:
    3,274
    Likes Received:
    924
    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2005
    Location:
    Spain
    The Palladium is not an actual preamp.

    I compared my Soldano GTO clone with a H&K Tubeman and there was no comparison, and I didn't even love the GTO. Not sure those Tubemans run at proper plate voltage. After having a GTO, it really bugged me the fact that it only had a tone control. I couldn't do anything with it besides "his thing". It sounded great with a boost but not much else for my tastes, so I eventually sold it.

    The SS-20 is a metal machine. It's not as tube-ish as the SS-11 since it has only one tube (thus the other 2 gain stages are JFET-based) but still sounds tits and for some stuff I prefer it. It has heaps more gain as well (I run the SS-11A dimed where the SS20 runs gain about halfway).


    Please tell us more about the Kartakou Beastbox. I really want to get one in next sale, but the fact that you can't tweak crunch and lead channels independently in any way but gain worries me a little.
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2020
    Wrecklyss likes this.
  2. Wrecklyss

    Wrecklyss Custom Speaker Cabinet Builder

    Messages:
    1,187
    Likes Received:
    197
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2012
    Location:
    Daytona Beach, FL
    Well, this is the first SSO suggestion I ordered.

    At first, I had no idea what that even meant. Apparently in Danish dialect, it roughly translates to "whatchamacallit." I then did a YouTube search and realized it was a very versatile hand made pedal. It gets plenty heavy but has a great low gain sound as well. Shipping is running a bit slow, but I'll try to post my impressions as soon as I get it.

    I'm still building my board up, so all the other great suggestions are on my radar now, just figuring out the order in which to scoop them up. The Joyo Preamp House looks like a ton of bang for the buck, and the Ceres is still high on the list. Still reviewing some of the other ones in this thread, but lots of cool stuff!
     
  3. HeHasTheJazzHands

    HeHasTheJazzHands greg rulz ok

    Messages:
    26,554
    Likes Received:
    9,790
    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2011
    Location:
    Louisiana
    One issue with the SS11 is that it seems to be a bit on the muddier side. It seems like it's kinda voiced like a Recto or Rivera Knucklehead. I had the SS30 and it kinda reminded me of a Mesa Mark with the bass knob set ~3 - 4. Not the TIGHTEST preamp but it had an aggressive chunk that was satisfying. I wonder if the SS20 was a good middle ground between the SS11 and SS30.

    Also calling @Gain_Junkie93 since he currently also owns a Kartakou Beastbox. And can compare it to a KSR Ceres.

    I'm GUESSING the Joyo is gonna be a poor man's version of the Mooer Preamp Live (fucking ironic :rofl: ). I still say get the KSR Ceres if you can. It's a very unique pedal, although once again I'm comparing it to a Mesa Mark in terms of brightness, dryness, and attack. It's not the thickest sounding preamp, but you bet your tits it'll cut through a mix.
     
    Wrecklyss likes this.
  4. Bearitone

    Bearitone SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    4,395
    Likes Received:
    1,736
    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2013
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    What do you mean integrated EQ section? Every preamp pedal I’ve tried has a EQ section.

    If you mean multi-channel:
    -AMT Bulava
    -KSR Ceres
    -Victory V4 Kraken

    And if you are okay with two dirt channels and no clean channel then:
    -Randall RGOD

    You can also hit up Master Effects to make you a custom preamp pedal with really whatever preamps you want in it.
     
  5. Emperoff

    Emperoff Hasta la vista, Baby Contributor

    Messages:
    3,274
    Likes Received:
    924
    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2005
    Location:
    Spain
    Which version of the SS11 did you play? I have the "A" version. The "B" version is tighter while also having more gain.

    The SS-20 is a different animal. They sound nothing alike. SS-20 is definetely tighter with an ENGL flavour. Mine came with a Sovtek 12ax7WA (which is a low gain tube) and it has about twice as gain as the SS-11A with JJs (hi gain). The SS-20 has an extra JFET stage that kicks in when you get the gain past halfway, which I honestly don't need even with medium output pickups. It sounds clearer that way.

    The SS-20 also has two separate outputs instead of a switch, so you can actually run direct to mixer and to a poweramp at the same time, should you need it.

    Only issue with the SS-20 is that you don't have separate volume controls for crunch and lead channels, so there can be a volume jump if you run the crunch gain very low. I run the crunch gain dimed and the lead gain at 50% and sounds very balanced that way. I wish the crunch channel had more gain, though.

    Both preamps have very distinct voicings between crunch and lead channels even with shared controls. The Kartakou Beastbox seems to fail miserably at this based on the demos I've seen, but I could be wrong. I hope I am because I want one anyway :lol:
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2020
  6. Gain_Junkie93

    Gain_Junkie93 Can't handle 7's.

    Messages:
    262
    Likes Received:
    73
    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2008
    Location:
    Palm Bay,FL
    Long story short the Ceres is capable of doing the same sounds as the Beastbox plus other better sounding ones. If I had not tried the Ceres first I'd have probably loved the Beastbox but it doesn't push me to play like the Ceres does which just sounds so good I can't help but keep playing to hear more of the tone. It's that good. The Beastbox is a solid preamp but they should've given the gain channels separate eqs. It's more compressed than the Ceres(though you can get more than enough compression with the gain up). The Beastbox is just less wowing to me overall. The Ceres makes me want to write letters and scream from mountaintops. I'm picky and I have to love gear to keep it, the Ceres will not be sold period.
     
    Wrecklyss and Spaced Out Ace like this.
  7. 0rimus

    0rimus SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    171
    Likes Received:
    116
    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2012
    Location:
    Chandler, AZ USA
    Usually the Ceres blows everything out of the water in this dudes videos, but the cheapo Joyo is the closest anything has come. Granted it's still a bit more muffled compared to the Ceres but still.

     
    Wrecklyss likes this.
  8. HeHasTheJazzHands

    HeHasTheJazzHands greg rulz ok

    Messages:
    26,554
    Likes Received:
    9,790
    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2011
    Location:
    Louisiana
    I was starting to agree when he played the Joyo next to the BE, but the second he turned on the KSR it was like... Nope. It crushes it too.. :lol:
     
  9. Wrecklyss

    Wrecklyss Custom Speaker Cabinet Builder

    Messages:
    1,187
    Likes Received:
    197
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2012
    Location:
    Daytona Beach, FL
    I watched that video already and it made me decide I need both of those. Will probably get the Joyo first, but I'm keeping room on my board for a Ceres which I plan on purchasing after I take care of some more immediate obligations. I already have a Joyo AC Tone (Vox style pedal) and it's surprisingly good; I love the Swiss Army knife approach of the Preamp House and the variety it has. Don't see too many Engl or Orange pre-amps, and I have song passages where a good low gain tone is needed also, so some Tweed Fender sounds will be good to have as well.
     
    0rimus likes this.
  10. Emperoff

    Emperoff Hasta la vista, Baby Contributor

    Messages:
    3,274
    Likes Received:
    924
    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2005
    Location:
    Spain
    Then shoot me an offer when you put the Beastbox for sale :lol:
     
  11. Gain_Junkie93

    Gain_Junkie93 Can't handle 7's.

    Messages:
    262
    Likes Received:
    73
    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2008
    Location:
    Palm Bay,FL
    Lol you make me an offer buddy I like my buyers forward. Seriously it's available I just haven't listed it yet. Also wouldn't say no to a trade. I like it enough that I've been continuing to court it because it's a great sound but I feel spoiled by the Ceres.
    Kinda wish I had sprung for the colossus but I've had a few iterations of 5150 and eh I can get one anytime. I should've picked up an Rgod honestly I dig Randalls but have no desire for a physical amp.
     
  12. Emperoff

    Emperoff Hasta la vista, Baby Contributor

    Messages:
    3,274
    Likes Received:
    924
    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2005
    Location:
    Spain
    Just let me know when you list it. I'm not in a hurry at all since I'm in the middle of a TriAxis negotiation at the moment.
     
  13. Vince

    Vince Contributor

    Messages:
    6,199
    Likes Received:
    731
    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2004
    Location:
    Gilbert, AZ
    I had an AMT P2 for a long time as well and it was simply awesome. On the plus side, it had a clean channel instead of a bypass, which made it ideal for a pedal-only rig.
     
  14. Alex79

    Alex79 SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    790
    Likes Received:
    307
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2015
    Location:
    Durham, UK
    I used to have one of these (and ran it into a Fender Champ).
    It's not bad, but I wouldn't buy it again. I would be more interested in the Victory Kraken preamp.
     
    Emperoff and Spaced Out Ace like this.
  15. Vostre Roy

    Vostre Roy Disciple of Djod

    Messages:
    2,372
    Likes Received:
    604
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2011
    Location:
    Rouyn, Qc, Canada
    I've recently switched to a pedalboard based preamp setup and fiddled a bit with several preamp sized pedals. I'll do a quick review in this thread as I keep on postponing a proper NGD thread for them.

    I'm basically using three preamps that I can switch between each others with my Joyo PXL Live (which also allow me to switch the channels on the Ceres). I then run everything through the effect return of a tube amp

    KSR Ceres: This pedal cost quite a lot of money compared to many other options (actually, the Ceres did cost me about the same price as the other three pedals I've got so far). Needless to say that my expectation were decently high when I placed my order. Well, my expectations were not only met, they got crushed. This thing is seriously awesome, cut through the mix like no other amps I've own. I wouldn't say it can do everything, kind of a bit "thin" sounding by itself so I wouldn't use it for my stoner/doom project, but for a modern death metal sound, its perfect. With its three channels, its the center piece of my pedal board right now.

    AMT P2: This was the first pedal suggested to me in a thread where I was looking for suggestions for a new amp (took a left turn and went with preamp pedals instead). This is supposedly based of the 5150 sound, but I've never owned any 5150/6505 amps so I can't compare with the real thing. It does sound pretty crushing, played it with my other guitarists and I could get through the mix without any problem (I even loved the sound in the mix more than the pedal by itself, the frequencies that were sticking out were very pleasant). Haven't used the clean on it much but it was not bad at all. I've removed it from the board when I got the Revv G3 simply because I could get the Ceres Lead channel to sound super similar to it and because I wanted to have something to play with when I practice in my room at my work's camp.

    Randall RGOD: Decided to get this one along the two others above because there was one available in my province. I couldn't find a bad review of it so I just thought "eh, what the hell" and made an offer on it. I can now testify why there's not bad review online: there's nothing bad to say on it. Well, maybe it could use a clean channel for more flexibility, or an external switching system like the Ceres. But sound wise, this thing is incredible. The red channel really gives that Randall solid-state feel, but in a good way. If I were to play some Death covers, this would do the trick. But the icing on the cake is the blue channel. There's less "bees" in the overdrive sound, its massive as fuck and sounds super thick. Complement the Ceres super well, both are super tight but the RGOD gives a bit more of an old-school death metal vide. Its my go-to sound if I want some nasty palm muted rhythm sections.

    Revv G3: This is the latest pedal I've got. And frankly, I've been.... well quite disappointed to be honest. And I really wanted to like it given its Canadian made and there's not a lot of options for gear built here. Although they mention on the website that this pedal can be ran directly through a power amp, I couldn't get a sound that wasn't muffed, even had to max the treble knob to get something useable. Tried to dim/boost all of the EQ and gain knobs, it didn't jive well with my setup at all. Going back and forth between that pedal, the RGOD and the Ceres, it was as if I've put a huge blanket over my cab with the G3. I did a quick last minute test on my last off day and used it as a distortion pedal (using the Ceres clean) and the results were already better, I'll need to fiddle a bit more with that setup but yeah, this pedal is a perfect example IMO of a distortion pedal sold as a preamp pedal.

    TL;DR

    The Ceres is an absolute beast, love the 3 channels, became the center piece of my sound.

    AMT P2 is an awesome "bang for the buck" option. Loved the sound, but the Ceres could cover for it so its now with me up north.

    Randall RGOD is really surprising. Worth every penny, only downside is that there's no clean channel

    Revv G3 is disappointing. Need to fiddle a bit more but I'd suggest any of the other 3 before that one.
     
    Bearitone and Wrecklyss like this.
  16. Alex79

    Alex79 SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    790
    Likes Received:
    307
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2015
    Location:
    Durham, UK


    I think this video is made by one of our board members. Be sure to check it out as well.
     

Share This Page