This little Black Box arrived for me just before Christmas… a proto version of Peter Clinch’s EP-PRE – a slightly tweaked clone of the Echoplex Pre-amp. I really wasn’t sure what to expect to be honest, having never used an Echoplex. If anything, I expected it to add a roundness and warmth. Well, that isn’t really the case, and I’m at a bit of a loss to explain exactly what it does, but I know I love it !! The first thing I did was email Peter and tell him he wasn’t getting it back. This thing somehow “polishes” your tone, and adds a kind of sheen to it, but more than that it seems to bring the sound out front with a bit of a 3D quality. Even though Peter says there’s a slight roll off of high and low frequencies on his scope, I can’t say I hear that. The sound is just better everywhere. Honestly, no matter how I set my amp up, no matter how good I think the tone is before I hit the switch, it ALWAYS sounds better with the EP-PRE on. The only control on the EP is a volume knob. Unity gain is pretty low on the knob, but there’s not a heap of boost on tap. Not enough to really drive an amp, but it’s not designed as a boost pedal as I understand it. There is enough volume there to kick up the volume a bit for leads though, along with some added clarity. It doesn’t add any dirt (again not intended to I don’t think), and it’s dead quiet. I think Peter has recommended using the EP-PRE first in chain, and it sounds good there, but I’ve found that the “out front and 3D” effect is most noticeable when between Dirt pedals and Amp, and again it really adds a lot of clarity to the effect. To be honest, I haven’t played around with any Delay to see where the EP would fit best, and I’ve only tried it with my PRS Custom 22 Soapbar at the moment. I’ll try it with Single Coils and Humbuckers as soon as I get a chance and report. I’m using a Ceriatone TMB/EF86 through a Heritage G12M. So there you have it. Quite an amazing and unique little box IMO… a leave on tone improver. I think there are a few of these out there now, but no production models. If anyone else here has had a chance to try one, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Disclaimer: Although we’ve only met once, Peter and I correspond quite a bit by email, and have become good friends. The review is honest and I always give Peter my honest opinion about his stuff. The EP-PRE is based on the EP-3 pre-amp… Peter doesn’t claim to have designed it.