"Amp-like"

megatrav

Well-known member
This is a hype word that is thrown around a lot when it comes to describing a pedal.

I myself, am a man of science. So, has anyone found an overdrive, distortion, or preamp pedal that works we'll directly into a power amp (effects loop return or stand alone power amp)?

I understand that sometimes pedals do not have enough output to work this way and some do not have a powerful enough EQ to sound like a amp preamp.

To make a somewhat long story short, I sold my amp before lockdown started and haven't had one since.
I either go direct using pedals or use my interface and DAW. Sometimes a mixture of both.

I would like to have an amp but don't have the ability to get a nice tube amp. So, I have been thinking about either build or purchase a power amp and a speaker cabinet and maybe building the preamp (hopefully something from pedalpcb but I am very open to whatever).

Interested to hear opinions!
Thanks!
 

Robert

Reverse Engineer
Staff member
Have you seen this?
 

Paradox916

Well-known member
I have to second the Valhalla, With the power amp out jack option it is a legit preamp. But if you want something that can do cleans to breakup check this out


The modded pop top is pretty cool and at the other end of the spectrum and there are other pedals on the PPCB menu that would be good candidates too but these two are my personal favorites for such an application.

Here’s the pop top breadboard project I did I ended up getting the pcb and populated it for an amp project that’s been on the back burner for awhile.

 
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manfesto

Well-known member
This is a hype word that is thrown around a lot when it comes to describing a pedal.

I myself, am a man of science. So, has anyone found an overdrive, distortion, or preamp pedal that works we'll directly into a power amp (effects loop return or stand alone power amp)?

I understand that sometimes pedals do not have enough output to work this way and some do not have a powerful enough EQ to sound like a amp preamp.

To make a somewhat long story short, I sold my amp before lockdown started and haven't had one since.
I either go direct using pedals or use my interface and DAW. Sometimes a mixture of both.

I would like to have an amp but don't have the ability to get a nice tube amp. So, I have been thinking about either build or purchase a power amp and a speaker cabinet and maybe building the preamp (hopefully something from pedalpcb but I am very open to whatever).

Interested to hear opinions!
Thanks!
I don’t have it anymore but the Valhalla’s preamp-out into the power-amp-in of the 50w Boss Katana sounded excellent and “amp-like” (e.g. no issues with low output volume and the EQ controls responded the way I’d have expected them to on an amp, which was rarely the case with other ODs I ran through the power-amp-in). It sounded *much* better than the normal output into the clean channel of the Katana or my Fender Deluxe Reverbs.

Didn’t manage to find a clean pedal that satisfied in the same way; the Mofeta was workable but still felt dark and honky into the power-amp-in compared to just straight into a clean channel (although I haven’t played either an original Model FeT or the amp it’s emulating, so it’s entirely possible that’s what it’s supposed to sound like)
 

megatrav

Well-known member
Those are some cool examples! I may have to check out the Pop Top. The Valhalla sounds great and is more distortion than I would probably use. How about the M800 or any other Marshall based pedals? I assume the Revv pedals might work okay at this?
 

thesmokingman

Paid Hater
This is a hype word that is thrown around a lot when it comes to describing a pedal.

I myself, am a man of science. So, has anyone found an overdrive, distortion, or preamp pedal that works we'll directly into a power amp (effects loop return or stand alone power amp)?

I understand that sometimes pedals do not have enough output to work this way and some do not have a powerful enough EQ to sound like a amp preamp.

To make a somewhat long story short, I sold my amp before lockdown started and haven't had one since.
I either go direct using pedals or use my interface and DAW. Sometimes a mixture of both.

I would like to have an amp but don't have the ability to get a nice tube amp. So, I have been thinking about either build or purchase a power amp and a speaker cabinet and maybe building the preamp (hopefully something from pedalpcb but I am very open to whatever).

Interested to hear opinions!
Thanks!
in the very limited audience it is for (especially considering price point) the Orange Bax Bangeetar is a modern Orange amp-in-a-box that absolutely delivered. I'd run that into the return of a HRD all day long ...

on the more DIY accessible end of the spectrum, *most* of the jfet based amp-in-a-box pedals are serviceable and usually come with a fairly representative tone stack ... and run a bit more amp-like at 18v operation
 

Dan M

Well-known member
Another example that follows @thesmokingman comments: A Fuzzlord FET120 into the return of a JCM800 2203 makes glorious sounds. It uses J201’s with an active baxandall tone control.
 

megatrav

Well-known member
How about the Catalinbread stuff? I have only built the Tweedman and Sabra Cadabra but I sold those pretty quick, so I'm not sure if they would work replacing a preamp?
 

Paradox916

Well-known member
Those are some cool examples! I may have to check out the Pop Top. The Valhalla sounds great and is more distortion than I would probably use. How about the M800 or any other Marshall based pedals? I assume the Revv pedals might work okay at this?
The Malachite is the lower Gain of the three Revv pedals, if Valhalla is too much gain then I think the Tyrian would be too. I can’t speak on my the m800 but a lot of people like that one. the guvernator pushes into the high gain territory but not as much as the Valhalla and the eq is nice and responsive... especially the mids. The Brown Betty is another one people really like and one you could look into.
 

Mike McLane

Active member
What about the Son of Ben? Isn't it a "full fledged" repro of the Benson Chimera pre-amp stage w/ JFET's sub'd for tubes? It can go from clean to high gain, Treble & Bass EQ.
 

megatrav

Well-known member
What about the Son of Ben? Isn't it a "full fledged" repro of the Benson Chimera pre-amp stage w/ JFET's sub'd for tubes? It can go from clean to high gain, Treble & Bass EQ.
I remember seeing an episode of That Pedal Show where they tried using a Benson Preamp into a power amp and it didn't really work well. The Hudson Broadcast did though
 

Mike McLane

Active member
You're right. I went back and looked at their archives and they A/B'd it against a Kingsley preamp pedal and the Benson was very lack luster by comparison.
 

megatrav

Well-known member
You're right. I went back and looked at their archives and they A/B'd it against a Kingsley preamp pedal and the Benson was very lack luster by comparison.
Those Kingsley pedals are legit. I have had a Squire D and a Harlot V1 and V2. All exceptional
 

Mike McLane

Active member
PPCB mentioned implementing tube based designs into future pedals. I'd love to see a tube driven preamp similar to a Kingsley in the mix. I don't need 2300 amp models, just one real good one.
 
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