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View Full Version : Recommendation for an acoustic preamp?


DavidG
03-31-2010, 11:04 AM
Looking for an acoustic preamp of some sort. Was thinking about getting a Country man DI pre? Will someone give me some helpful advice? Looking to spend 250 to 300. Anyone use the moma bear Dtar?

Edit: probably looking for used

DavidG
04-01-2010, 06:48 AM
Never mind, I just won a Trillion dollars!








































































































A/F:D

drive-south
04-01-2010, 07:14 AM
I'm not aware that Countyman makes a preamp. They do make direct boxes, but have no preamps listed on thier site.

The Baggs Para-DI is very popular and affordable. If you want more functions their new Venue is a step up.

Radial offers a line of DI boxes, but their new Tonebone PZ-PRE is a full-function preamp as well.

Both the Venue and Tonebone sell for $300 and have efx loops, parametric EQ, boost, multiple inputs, etc.

You didn't tell us what pickup your' using. This is definately relevent to the discussion.

There are higher-end preamps out there. The top of the heep is the Pendulum SPS1 at nearly $2k.

Mama Bear is an imaging preamp like the Fishman Aura. They seem to have come and gone the way of the hoola hoop.

drive-south

mannish
04-01-2010, 08:57 AM
I use a Fishman Pro or something like that with K&K Western Mini - I am pleased with it and don't need to spend that much on a preamp cause I probably could not hear that much difference

royd
04-01-2010, 10:43 AM
the Dtar Solstice is great

venivici
04-01-2010, 01:39 PM
I have a LR Baggs venue, which served me well and works great, just dont need to use it for myself.

Its actually for sale in the emporium for a decent price :aok

Mrjoelv
04-01-2010, 04:34 PM
All good choices. I just picked up a Fishman Aura Spectrum DI. It has what Fishman calls images that give your acoustic a live microphone sound even with a marginal pickup. I like what it does so far. Different than anything I tried up to this point.

DavidG
04-01-2010, 04:57 PM
I'm not aware that Countyman makes a preamp. They do make direct boxes, but have no preamps listed on thier site.


Yeah my bad.

the Dtar Solstice is great

I might check that one out. Thanks

willnorvell
04-02-2010, 09:54 AM
Look around and find a PreSonus Acousti-Q. They'll pop up on Ebay every once in a while. I used to travel full time leading worship, and I tried EVERYTHING as far as preamps are concerned. The PreSonus always let me dial in exactly what I wanted. I'm using an Avalon U5 now that I'm in the same room all the time, but I flirt with going back to the Acousti-Q quite a bit.

DavidG
04-02-2010, 01:05 PM
Look around and find a PreSonus Acousti-Q. They'll pop up on Ebay every once in a while. I used to travel full time leading worship, and I tried EVERYTHING as far as preamps are concerned. The PreSonus always let me dial in exactly what I wanted. I'm using an Avalon U5 now that I'm in the same room all the time, but I flirt with going back to the Acousti-Q quite a bit.

Will do. PreSonus makes some pretty killing stuff. Thanks man.

drbob1
04-04-2010, 04:10 PM
I've played a Dtar Momma and I own a Fishman Aura. Both use a similar technology to substitute samples of a guitar similar to yours for the piezo sound. It's cool technology, and if you're into the sound of recorded guitars like old Simon and Garfunkle or CSNY then it's very cool. If you like the piezo sound live, there're better choices. I've used a Fishman preamp that's matched to my Nightfly, OK I guess. At church we're using a pair of the Tech21 DI/EQ boxes for acoustic and they sound great.

Gretsch1972
04-04-2010, 05:21 PM
Mama Bear is an imaging preamp like the Fishman Aura.


That is categorically false. The Mama Bear is a modeler. The Aura is an imager that uses a quantifiably different method to achieve the sounds. You may dislike them both, but they are nothing alike.

The Aura makes highly sophisticated images of an acoustic guitar using various low to high end microphones and creates an image that can be interpreted by your guitar's pickup. But it's specifically matched for the instrument you play, unlike the inferior technology of the Mama Bear.

The Fishman Spectrum DI is used by people like James Taylor and Jerry Douglas. Hardly obsolete.

Pietro
04-04-2010, 05:54 PM
I adore my Yamaha AG-Stomp. It has mike modeling, but only one mike is decent, the very first one. really tames the piezo quack, and makes my guitars sound like they're miked.

Also like the Taylor K4. No idea how much they cost.

Para DI is easiest to use.

edward
04-06-2010, 03:53 PM
The Taylor K4 is pricey, around $400 neighborhood. Great preamp, though ...designed by Rupert Neve, no slouch in the industry.

I, however, live in a different neighborhood ;)
I like the LR Baggs ParaDI, and now the Venue even better. The ParaDI has one distinct advantage of being able to utilize phantom power. But if you can live without that feature, the Venue has a wider range of input gain (so better for a range of different pickup systems), has a built in mute/tuner, and user-definable clean boost. The notch filter and sweep eq is also impeccably quiet and does its job perfectly.

That said, if you are serious about a good preamp, get a tube preamp and you'll never look back. Not cheap, but a good preamp goes a long way in maintaining/amplifying great tone. And in terms of amplifying acoustic guitar, more often than not (and to a varying degree given the choice of pickup system), acoustic amplification is generally plagued with some amount of "hard edge" when amp'd by anything other than a mic. Tubes (typically) have a wonderful tendency to retain the true warmth and natural timbre of the source tones. ...IMHO, anyway.

Edward

78deluxe
04-06-2010, 04:09 PM
Looking for an acoustic preamp of some sort. Was thinking about getting a Country man DI pre? Will someone give me some helpful advice? Looking to spend 250 to 300. Anyone use the moma bear Dtar?

Edit: probably looking for used

What kind of guitar? Are there any electronics in it now, if so what?

What kind of environment do you want to use it it? (finger style duo, full band, etc.)

All questions that need to be answered before any useful answer could be given about an acoustic pickup, IMO.

RockinB23
04-07-2010, 08:35 AM
I have been using the Baggs PARADI for quite some time. I bought the Baggs Venue DI and then sold it again. I didn't like it as much it ate batteries really quickly and it doesn't power off XLR Phantom power and the signal seemed overpowering for my sound guy.

I have a DTAR Wavelength Pickup in my Mayes and I'm getting another in my next Mayes so I have been very curious and interested in trying a DTAR MAMA Bear. My Wavelength sounds pretty good just plugged straight into a DI box which Preamp which is a plus.

slowth
04-07-2010, 11:39 AM
well the mama bear is some sorta modeler aint it?

if u want purely EQ it would be the equinox. the solstice would only make sense if u had 2 pickups?

having said that, i use the Headway EDB 1 preamp and it totally trashes the Baggs DI in terms of sound quality.
Compared to the solstice, it's as good but more compact!

JohnSS
04-09-2010, 03:32 PM
You might want to look into the BBE Acoustimax. Huge footprint, but excellent and versatile EQ, plus you get a built in BBE Sonic Stomp.

HeeHaw
04-09-2010, 10:34 PM
I use a BBE Acoustimax and it works fine for me. My Baggs PADI had better EQ sweep, but the sonic expander on the BBE makes the whole pedal work better for me. All of the above being said, I'd go back to the Baggs PADI in a heartbeat as it just seems to be a better quality DI.

Joseph Hanna
04-14-2010, 05:04 PM
The Mama Bear is a modeler. The Aura is an imager that uses a quantifiably different method to achieve the sounds.

What is the quantifiable difference between the term "imager" and "modeler?"

lannyhall
04-24-2010, 12:22 PM
I have the Mama Bear and have found it useful. I have used it with my two true acoustic guitars, aTaylor 814CE and Mossman Texas Plains (with an undersaddle piezo) and my electric guitar with an acoustic option (McNaught custom with Black Saddle/Hipshot system for the acoustic out). I don't take full advantage of the modeling of different kinds of guitars. Instead I use the Mama Bear to help take away the artificial sound associated with the acoustic pickups. The result is somewhat subtle, but effective. Each of the acoustics sound more authentic when playing through the Mama Bear and then into the P.A.

drive-south
04-24-2010, 08:45 PM
I just ordered a Radial PZ-Pre. I'll post a review once I recieve it. It seems to have all the features I want including a semi-parametric EQ.

DavidG
04-25-2010, 11:00 AM
I just ordered a Radial PZ-Pre. I'll post a review once I recieve it. It seems to have all the features I want including a semi-parametric EQ.

Please do. Ive yet to get/try anything. Been buying to much for my eletric rig.:messedup