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Alembic Club » Alembic Basses & Guitars » Archive: 2007 » Archive through July 18, 2007 » Preamp comparison « Previous Next »

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Username: jzias

Post Number: 14
Registered: 4-2007
Posted on Monday, July 02, 2007 - 7:07 am:   Edit Post

Would anyone be willing to give their opinions on the F1-X and the F2-B, and compare them to the Groove Tubes Trio.

Intermediate Member
Username: elwoodblue

Post Number: 152
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Tuesday, July 03, 2007 - 6:30 am:   Edit Post

I have the f-1x and a couple trio's, the trio is a super versatile preamp,
I love mine and could talk for a while about it...'cept it's early.

...can you get a little more specific about your wants/needs... ?

The Trio's overdrive in channels 2 and 3 puts most distortion boxes to shame (imho).It's designed well.

Both are clean(low noise), and musical and inspire the next note...I use them each very differently.
...more of a contrast between the Trio and F-1x than a comparison.

'til soon
Username: jzias

Post Number: 15
Registered: 4-2007
Posted on Wednesday, July 04, 2007 - 9:06 pm:   Edit Post

Can you elaborate on that contrast. I would also appreciate some power amp suggestions.
Intermediate Member
Username: elwoodblue

Post Number: 154
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Thursday, July 05, 2007 - 1:53 am:   Edit Post

what kind a music do you play?
The big difference is that the Trio has more than one channel ;

Channel 1 is the clean one ,reminds me of a nice lap steel, deep and sparkly.

Channel 2 is 'mean'(that's what is is titled),
...crunchy ,yet still expansive with a heavier picking technique(and not much low level noise for the amount of crunch available).

Channel 3 is called 'scream'. great colors in that overdrive with a little more background noise(when muting the strings and no limiter).
...sorta 'zappa'esque, or satriani, heavy and sharp metal shards eminating when the treble is turned up.

The equalization in all three is simple and powerful...alot like the Alembics.
The trio's are hard to come by used,new they are 1000+(worth it every time I play).

I'm loving my Stewart power amps, if clean and lotsa damping factor is what you are after.Mostly used for bass although they'll amplify anything with a flat smile.
I run my pre's\rack into 100 watt Oliver's or Mesa combo' I guess as guitar goes I'm not the one to ask about power amps.

I know there is alot of good power amp knowledge around here.

If purity of tone get's your goat...I've come across some great tube amps, no frills, nothing but one input and a speaker output and some sorta magic in between: I believe is the website.

whew...I'm not a fast typer...too many opurrtoonities to edit missed takes.
Username: 0vid

Post Number: 83
Registered: 4-2003
Posted on Thursday, July 05, 2007 - 5:14 am:   Edit Post

Interestingly there is a local shop where I live in Nottingham UK with a GT trio that's gathering dust. I might make an offer spare cash permitting, I think they have matching GT power amp too.

A solid state power amp will amplify your preamplifier's distortion tones. A tube power amp will give you the possibility of running your preamp clean and your power amp in overdriven mode - if you do this you'll get a sound that no preamp distortion can give you. The sound is spongier and has more 'give'. I used to run a 12U rack for guitar alone, which had a Triaxis and a JMP1 and a third preamp I made myself that only did one distortion tone. This was my setup in my commercial recording studio. I ran all three via MIDI switching (via a ground control) to a Marshall EL34 50/50. My recording studio was a soundproof concrete structure, so I could run the Marshall amp on full and the Triaxis on clean at 3 am in the mornng.

It was my favourite recording tone. It won't give you Satriani, but it will do a Santana type tone and it will do a Stonsey tone or a Vox type tone no problem.

I sold all of that 12U rack stuff as I do not need that much distortion in my life (!) and now use a F-1X for guitar (also use one for bass), which I run clean and run a tube power amp on full. The F-1X has a much lower noise floor than the Triaxis, and you'd get a nice power amp distortion if you feed a nice power amp.

I think actually a lot of the classic guitar combos in the 50's 60s did not have complex preamp cascading gain stages and the distortion was really an overdriven power amp stage.

Having said all that, I gig on guitar with a couple of cascaded TS 808s , a F-1X and solid state Carver power amp, and sometimes a Stewart power amp. the EL34 50/50 is a bitch to carry and my left toe can testify to its weight. The 20/20 version has a reputation for overheating, though I think they fixed that now. I did a series of gigs on bass with a guitarist who used one of those and I'd say that's all you need on stage for most bands.
It has less sonic bottom than the 50/50 though.

Mesa Engrg also have a slew of power amps, and I am looking to get either the marshall 20/20 or the equivalent Mesa 1U unit. You'd have better luck with Mesa in the US, they are terribly overpriced (even at used prices) in the UK.
Intermediate Member
Username: elwoodblue

Post Number: 156
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Saturday, July 07, 2007 - 12:57 pm:   Edit Post

how's your quest going?
Intermediate Member
Username: elwoodblue

Post Number: 158
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Saturday, July 14, 2007 - 4:17 am:   Edit Post

what's that thing Cartman always says?

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