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> Preamps ?, ... how does that work?
chast
post Jan 1 2008, 02:38 PM
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Hey, Happy New Year again smile.gif

So, I always read something about Preamps and I dont understand how they work.
My first question is, what is a Preamp good for ?
Second question is, how do you get a sound from it ? Do you have to connect it to a box ?

Are there some real advantages of Preamps in comparism with tube heads or whatever ?

Max


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Muris Varajic
post Jan 1 2008, 04:56 PM
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I think we had same question before,
anyone has a link or?


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mattacuk
post Jan 1 2008, 05:14 PM
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I am totally embaressed to say I dont really understand what a Pre-amp is even now!! sad.gif

I understand there is a pre-amp and a power-amp... but thats all i know laugh.gif smile.gif


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MickeM
post Jan 1 2008, 06:17 PM
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In short just to not make a fool of myself by being incorrect laugh.gif The preamp takes the weak signal from the guitar pickups and amplifies it to a certain line-level.

The power amp takes this signal and amplifies it further and enough to drive the speakers. Adds the "watts" so to say cool.gif


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mattacuk
post Jan 1 2008, 06:41 PM
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Thats the best explaination ive heard yet thanks MickeM wink.gif


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chast
post Jan 1 2008, 08:01 PM
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QUOTE (Muris @ Jan 1 2008, 04:56 PM) *
I think we had same question before,
anyone has a link or?


Yeah, I only remember the question in one of your gear-threads, here is the link:
https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/guitar_fo...ost&p=82409

I undersand that smile.gif
But I want to have some further explanation, how they work etc. smile.gif

So, did I understand that correct the preamp takes the signal from the guitar and "generates" the sound and the power amp, makes this signal louder, and it is connected to a box or something, to get a sound that you actually can hear ?

Hope, that is kinda correct smile.gif

Thank you guys.


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Andrew Cockburn
post Jan 1 2008, 08:31 PM
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Its a matter of degree - you have to amplify a signal in stages. A preamp is the first few stages so is designed to make a weak signal OK ish. A power amp takes an ok ish signal and makes it strong. They both do exactly the same thing but over different power ranges.

Most guitar amps have both a pre and a power amp built into them, however sometimes it is cool to split them up into separate units - a lot of high end gear does this.

Muris has a couple of preamp modules, and they also have effects built into them, then he also has a Mesa stereo power amp to feed the preamp into (am I right Muris?) - This is a great combination as you can mix and match the different parts.


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mattacuk
post Jan 1 2008, 11:46 PM
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I understand what they are now!! I was just wondering though, what is the main avdantage of buying seperate pre-amps ? smile.gif


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erik
post Jan 2 2008, 12:08 AM
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I'm not shure, but I think the main advantage is that you can choose exactly what pre-amp you want, instead of something built in. This way you can create your own sound by making your own combination of preamp and poweramp.
And also I think many seperate preamps are of a better quality than the built in ones, but I'm not shure.
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Muris Varajic
post Jan 2 2008, 12:15 AM
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QUOTE (mattacuk @ Jan 1 2008, 11:46 PM) *
I understand what they are now!! I was just wondering though, what is the main avdantage of buying seperate pre-amps ? smile.gif


I would say main advantage of it is that you can take only preamp to the studio and record
it directly when you can't have cabinet,mic etc.
Plus you can combine preamps and poweramp from different brands to get something unique,
tho Mesa(and many others) claims that Mesa preamp runs best on Mesa poweramps biggrin.gif


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Hisham Al-Sanea
post Jan 2 2008, 12:48 AM
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i think its so easy to understood that any way the pre amp comming without power just as link item between the guitar or the instrument and the power which huge the sound


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Muris Varajic
post Jan 2 2008, 01:00 AM
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And preamp is the place where you are actually editing the tone,gain,EQ's etc smile.gif
You can't colored it that much in power section wink.gif


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Ivan Milenkovic
post Jan 2 2008, 06:04 PM
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The whole idea of separate sections came form high end hi-fi devices since they had them separate for flexibility and high quality sound. The preamp is more important than the power amp one in a way because it lets you define the sound instead of just amplifying ( passively adding a certain character off course ).
The ideal is when the both sections are ,off course, all tube, but there are hybrid combinations in many of todays combo amps. Most often preamp section in those is tube powered, and poweramp is solid state. This is often the best solution, as the tube can be saturated to get decent distortion in the preamp stage and power amp is simply amplifying the tube sound, but at high volume levels poweramp still produces hard clipping because of the solid state design, so the best solution is to have both of these sections tube powered.
Also in tube (and solid state) instrument (guitar) amps there can be more sections than two, each section containing its own tubes (or diodes in solid state design) for further saturation of the signal. So - the more sections the bigger the overdrive.

This post has been edited by Milenkovic Ivan: Jan 2 2008, 06:06 PM


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Andrew Cockburn
post Jan 2 2008, 07:13 PM
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Great summary Ivan smile.gif

As an example, the tube amp I am building has 2 stages in the preamp, and a single power amp stage. Power amp stages are usually just a single stage, but the tubes are often doubled or quadrupled within that stage to up the power output (power is different from gain) - even though there may be 4 tubes, they are all working in unison so it counts as a single stage. Preamps are about gain, power amps are about ... well, power

Todays high gain amps will probably have almost identical power output stages to older amps, but they will add more preamp stages to get the high gain sound. Five or six stages are not unusual - in comparison, the classic Fender and older Marshall amps would typically have had just 2 preamp stages.

I am thinking of adding an extra ctage or two to my amp to get a more high gain kind of sound.


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Muris Varajic
post Jan 2 2008, 07:41 PM
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Full and great explanations Ivan and Andrew,I'm signing it biggrin.gif


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