For those of you who have experience with the Xotic BB preamp, I have a few questions please. Is this pedal a "Marshall in a box" type pedal? Does the BB have gain on tap like an MI Audio CrunchBox, or the Xotic SL Drive? Thank you
I have never played the real deal BB, but do own (2) versions of the Caline OrangeBurst*, which is supposed to be a BB clone.I don’t have experience with the other pedals the OP mentions but for me, the BB Preamp is the Swiss Army knife of pedals as it sounds good with any guitar and amp in Amy combination. It’s more on the warmer and smoother side. If I had to have only one overdrive pedal, it’s the one I’d pick.
It’s my understanding that the Drivetrain is indeed derived from the BB Preamp (and by association, the TS)Thanks for the responses everyone. So a Tube Screamer type circuit? I wonder then if it is similar to my Reverend Drivetrain's which is a TS circuit with bass and treble. I had it in my head that this pedal was indeed a MIAB sound.
I agree with this. Doesn’t matter how many electronic bits it shares with a TS, it sounds different.Don't give too much weight to the "it's a TS circuit" description. It is indeed based on a TS topology but to me, it sounds nothing like a Tube Screamer. I was a hardcore SD-1 guy until I played a BB Preamp, but I was sold on it instantly and haven't gone back.
To my ears, the difference between the BB and the TS/SD-1 is in the dynamics. The BB, although it adds overdrive, somehow does it while retaining the pick attack. It's a very percussive pedal. My old SD-1s (even modded ones) sound very flat and compressed by comparision. If you want liquid, sustaining leads and lots of compression, then you want a BB variant with more compression, like the AT or the Plus. However, I LOVE the stock orange BB Preamp for it's chunky rhythm sound. For leads it makes my Tele absolutely howl.
Back to the OP's question: no, it does not have as much gain a typical MIAB pedals. It's more about adding a bit of gain on its own and then driving amp harder. The EQ makes it versatile with a variety of amps. I run mine with a bit of boost to both highs and lows into an 18 Watter clone.
This reminds me, I really should pick up a second BB as a spare, or just to take along in my guitar case it I go somewhere without by pedalboard.
BB - Big BritishThe BB Preamp isn't as much gain as a Crunch Box I know. I've not tried an SL Drive but from demos, I'd argue the BB has less gain than that one as well.
The BB is to my ears a bit Marshally yes, but lower gain sounds. The BB stands for Bluesbreaker. It's not a Bluesbreaker pedal circuit, but rather a nod to the sounds of the Bluesbreaker amp which was a JTM45 in combo form. That's what this pedal sounds like. Creamy, dark, and like the Beano Clapton tone or JTM45 thing. Don't expect Plexi/800 levels of gain or a bright kerrang crunch. This pedal is more of a solo-oriented pedal and it's really thick medium gain. I wouldn't use it for rhythm and I wouldn't expect 80s high gain tones out of it either.