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Xotic BB Preamp Distortion

A high-end soft distortion and overdrive pedal

Price: $89 to $119 at 2 stores
Searched Xotic BB Preamp Distortion in Reviews


Will stay on my board for a long time. featured

Ease Of Use First thing to note: have a decent clean sound, and when you plug this thing up it will sound good. It is really easy to get a good sound out of. Really, there are only 3 knobs (the fourth is volume). For the ease of use, I give this thing a 5. It is extremely easy to set up, use, and get some cool sounds.

Sound I have run this only through my schecter c-1 elite into 2 amps: a solidstate 65W Crate RFX, and a jet city 20 watt head. I kept the volume relatively low on the crate and it sounded pretty good...but where it really shone through was with the Jet City. I run the Jet City through my Mesa 2x12 recto cab, and I thought it sounded pretty good even before I plugged the pedal in. So I go to church (where the amp is at) and plug the pedal up. By the way, I've found that it sounds best to run the BB Preamp on a clean setting. So when plugged up, maaaan this thing sounded good. This pedal to me sounds very much like a Vox gain stage. It's kind of hard to explain, but its a very creamy, smooth sound. Compared to the Jet City's gain, this thing smokes it. Honestly, I wasn't expecting much of this pedal, but it could be used as a distortion or an overdrive pedal. It's very versatile and does both well.

One main complaint is that the gain knob isn't very responsive...I say it is responsive up until about noon on the gain...but much more after that just adds compression. Not that it's a bad thing at all, but some people do not like it. I personally have no need to go above about 11 oclock. It can go from a 100% clean boost, to blues, to rock rhythm, to smooth lead tones. Honestly, use it for any of these and you would be in good shape.

Reliability This thing is built like a rock. I don't ever plan on it breaking and don't bringing a backup because it is made with sturdy parts.

Customer Support Never dealt with the company, so, in a sense, I like them! A company that I don't have to really talk to does their job right.

Liked about it I love the sturdy feel of this pedal, the gain staging is very unique and versatile...and the separate bass and treble knobs can take you from vox to marshall tones. Love it

Didn't like The pedal could have a wider gain sweep...but I still don't have much problems dialing in the right gain. Other than that there is nothing I would change...Absolutely stellar pedal.

Overall satisfaction:

By GroovyTubes
Jul 02, 2011
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Price: $89 to $119
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BB Preamp

Ease Of Use This is unbelievably easy to use. It has 4 knobs; bass, treble, volume and gain, and almost any setting sounds good.

Sound I am currently using an RG550 reissue with Dimarzio Evo2 and Breed Neck pickups, a Laney VC15 tube amp and an Ibanez DE7 delay pedal. I also tested this pedal with a Hagstrom Ultra Swede guitar and a Peavey Valveking halfstack.

Unfortunately, I haven't tried it with a cheap amp, so I'm not sure how it will perform in those scenarios. Both amps I tried it with were medium-budget tube amps. The Laney sounds good even without it, although the drive channel lacks a bit. The Peavey... good but not so much. This is were the BB Preamp comes. Dialing in a bit of gain on the amps and boosting it with the BB Preamp made the Peavey sound great. The pedal should really be labelled as a Tone Booster. It does not change the characteristics of the amplifier, but made it sound ten times better and much more versatile. I didn't try it enough with the Peavey to say more so now I'll move on to the Laney and what it does with that.

As I mentioned, my rig currently consists of a guitar, 2 pedals and a 15 watt tube amp. The tone I get is definitely the best non-recorded guitar tone I have heard in my life. The sound is THE sound I want. With the bass and treble control, along with the amp knobs (treble, mid, bass), it is really easy to find new sounds. The main sound I like to use with this pedal is a Greg Howe-like smooth lead tone. This is my style of playing, and all my equipment are set to do so, so it is not just the pedal that provides the tone. What the pedal did though, is take my sound from an average/good bedroom sound to THE perfect lead tone (for me!).

Another thing worth mentioning is the heavenly blues tones this pedal can get. It sounds so natural, yet so much better than any amp by itself. If you are looking for a boost/overdrive pedal and can afford this, I do not think you can go wrong with this. I will even say this: if you do not like the tone, change the amp or the guitar!

Reliability Very reliable. Haven't had any problems with it whatsoever, and I take it with me where ever I go

Liked about it Everything. It even looks good! But the major thing I like about this, is that now I can get the sound I've always wanted

Didn't like Maybe price? It's worth every cent but it would be nicer if it was more affordable

Overall satisfaction:

By no1spretty
Dec 16, 2009
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Price: $89 to $119
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