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Les Paul with Onboard Booster Preamp - After market options?


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It depends on quite a few things - mostly concerning how you play, what you play and how you dial-in your guitar & amp settings.


If you like what it does and think it would be more convenient than a foot-pedal then why not?

One 'plus' over the foot-switch option is that you have it to hand wherever you are - you don't need to go across to wherever your pedal is to activate the boost.

One down side is not everyone would want this fitted so if you were intending to sell-on the guitar at a later date it would be preferable if it could be removed so as to return the LP to 'stock specs' but that should be straightforward enough.

I didn't like how much the signal was boosted when played through the clean channel - I'd prefer a far less pronounced jump in volume.

'Dirty' the increase is far less dramatic - which I prefer.

I'll check the specs of the booster to see if this can be adjusted / pre-set to a different required amount...


I find that using the vol & tone knobs on my guits does effectively the same job for my needs but that takes us back to my first sentence.




EDIT : From what I've read the +20db boost is the lowest you can get. There are a further two stages which can boost the signal even more but not less.

In addition to this I didn't like the sound of this bit;

"...for each booster setting you may need to adjust booster's volume level, as well as amp channel's settings, because they all interact with each other..."


I'm a simple guy. Two vol / two tone and my amp's controls give me what I need. YMMV.

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You might call me too conservative, but I prefer pedal boosters.


However...I run my cable to the amp through a Palmer Dacappo re-amping box, which has a switch for -10db or +4db boost to fine-tune the signal. ;)


Cheers... Bence

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I've had a couple of Strats setup similar to this since the early 90's, with the "Clapton Model" 25dB mid-boost active circuitry. As a "no-pedal" guy playing through vintage tubes amps (no channel switching or "lead" channel), I've found that to have overdrive/boost at my fingertips IS very useful and handy.


From the short vid it on this product, it seems you kick in various levels of boost with multiple push/pull pots, and even in the vid he gets "crossed-up" (note the deer in the headlights facial expression), and ends up with an unexpected setting. Just the CHANCE of this happening on stage would be unacceptable to me.


The Fender circuit is controlled by re-purposing one of the Tone pots, and you dial up the level of boost you want (0-25 dB). The other Tone control is then rewired as a "Master Tone Control". I see no reason why this type control operation would not work on an LP. Or maybe even a push/pull pot for a dual tone control, so you could retain individual tone settings for each pickup.


In Summary: Nice idea, although in no way "original" (the first guitar with on-board fx I remember was the Ibanez? Les Paul MPC (70's), with interchangeable circuit boards). Does not seem user friendly, and seems to have been designed for "bells and whistles" instead of actual ease of operation and usability. I would say it needs to go back to the engineering department for some practical design and operation revisions. I will say I thought it sounded good.

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it is a useable option to have but, I'd have to know more about the particulars to decide if it was for me.



I had a pre-amp in an Ibanez MC400 that I got in like 1979. It was pretty elaborate, and had a three band eq, as well a gain control and also featured the Ibanez Tri-sound swtiching. It all ran off a small op amp and a 9v battery. The "active" electronics did mess with the overall tone, which wasn't bad but the guitar was inherently aggressive tone wise.


The boost circuit was capable of delivering +45db, and if you were not careful, that boost switch was a sound mans night mare. If you were in the gain channel, the amp's pre would soak off most of it, and you'd get a nice smooth boost with days worth of sustain.


If you were in the clean channel, you would get a straight ahead 45db punch that would make the amp jump about 2 feet off the floor. I got more than a few side long glances from our sound guy if I hit that switch at an inopportune moment. I wonder how this one compares in that aspect.

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Yup. What he said.


I had a similar experience to that described by kidblast above when, for a short time in around '83 / '84, I had a Music Man Sabre II.


The MM had active electronics and, although it was fun to use when noodling around in the shop, used 'live' it was far more trouble than it was worth in terms of finding a band balance.

It added far too much of a boost and, furthermore, the 'tone' lost out in equal measure. As I had always used Strats until the MM arrived I figured along the lines of "If it ain't broke..." and bought another old Strat in it's stead.


Hence my reservations about the Vol increase alluded to in my earlier post...



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There is an output volume on the booster, which can be set to ones need. I doubt there would be one needing it set to maximum output. This output volume is accessible from behind, through plastic cover, if installed like that. It is actually pretty versatile. And the tone pot remains tone, or volume remains volume if you chose to install it there; you just route the signal through the booster or true bypass to the output, by using the push push switch.... it is obvious that adjunstments have to be made if an amp is changed, since signal volume may be different. There is no swiss knife of tone available :) yet. But once set to taste, there is not much left to do, just using it, as the video above shows. I would use it, because it seems very transparent and versatile.



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Not even a thank you card.

I've been eyeballing a Classic at my friend's shop, it's a 2008 or 2009, not sure which, HCS plain top, doesn't have the toggle switch like these new Classics but it does have push/pull pots. Anyway, after he does a set-up on it I'm gonna try it out and see how she does. My 2 LP's have 50's necks, I'm interested to see how this slimmer neck feels.

You'd think Gibson could find it in their heart to generate a thank you card for ya. For what it's worth, I appreciate what you did with your Classic (and the other two as well).


Bryan S.

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I would like to also point out that Pippy had to endure a lot of emails asking spec questions about his Les Pauls lol, he was a very tolerant supportive guide. msp_thumbup.gif


The best way to learn is to ask!!

Regarding trends and gear... I'm with ya, I don't need all of the bells and whistles on my guitar, just 2 volumes, 2 tones, 2 humbuckers, and 6 strings. And some frets. Save the boosters for NASA or Virgin Galactic...

I had a PRS a few years back, awesome guitar, but (to me) it didn't hold a candle to either of my LP's.

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