Radial Tonebone PZPRE Acoustic Instrument Preamp
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- used for your personal stage amplifier, this is a high impedance guitar or instrument level signal. Connect using a standard coaxial guitar cable2. Tuner output
- works with the mute footswitch for quiet tuning on stage. If you have a tuner, you would connect it here using a short instrument cable. Muting the signal will turn off all of the outputs except the tuner out which is active at all times.3. The pre EQ, pre-effects output
- this low impedance balanced XLR output is generally sent to the main PA mixer and is generally used when you have a sound engineer doing the mix. Like all direct boxes, it is mic level and therefore should be connected to a mic preamp. This output sends the 'dry' signal to the PA without being affected by the tone controls or effects on the PZ-Pre. This allows the FOH (front-of-house) engineer to adjust the tone and effects as needed for the room sound.4. The post EQ, post effects output
- is also a balanced mic level output but this time, the signal includes all of the EQ settings and effects (if used) on the PZ-Pre. In a large scale concert production, this output would generally feed the stage monitors with your 'wet' sound. It would also be the preferred output to the PA in show clubs where you may want to send your sound to the house mix.You are now set to connect the outputs. Now turn up your amp and PA system to make sure you are getting signal. If you are also using monitors, you should now turn these on. It is good practice to always do you initial sound tests at low volume. Increase the input level to where you feel it is comfortable.Setting the EQYou are now ready to experiment with the tone controls. Start by adjusting the low and high controls and then work on the mid range. Keep in mind that feedback is generated by excessive resonance and adding bass on a loud stage can cause your instrument to vibrate, resonate and 'feed' back into the PA causing a run-away feedback loop. The PZ-Pre's powerful EQ is designed with plenty of swing so small changes will have a big impact on your sound. Remember rule number one in audio: with EQ, least is best.Another important fact is that all of the personality and energy in an acoustic instrument is found in the mid range. This is also where human hearing is most sensitive. So if you cut the midrange out of your signal because it sounds nice when you play alone, you will no longer be heard in the mix when you play with a band.The midrange controls on the PZ-Pre include a frequency knob and cut & boost knob. Most acoustic instruments tend to favour a minor midrange cut: try setting the mid control to 11 o'clock and rotate the frequency control until you find the sweet spot. There are no rules, just use your ears and remember... least is best.Controlling feedbackOnce your tone has been adjusted, try increasing the level to the point where the instrument begins to resonate or cause feedback. If low resonance is encountered, try activating the low frequency roll-off (high-pass filter) and setting it to the first position. This setting will give you a gentle roll-off that will usually tame run-away bass resonance.Next, you may encounter mid-range or high frequency squeal. This is best controlled using the notch filter. A notch filter is basically a type of EQ with a very narrow Q or notch that cuts out the center frequency as set by the notch control. There are two settings for normal and extra deep notches. Simply select the first notch setting and slowly sweep the notch center frequency control until you locate the offending frequency. This control extends over a wide range from 56Hz to 330Hz If you find that the normal notch is not sufficient to suppress the problem frequency, try extending the filter by going to the deep position.In some instances, as you move around the stage you will notice that feedback or resonance seems to increase in certain spots between the wedge monitor and your personal amp. This is caused by nodes either amplifying each other or cancelling each other out at various frequencies. Try reversing the (absolute) phase with the 180 degree polarity reverse. This can often help minimize this occurrence. Keep in mind that the louder you set the on-stage volume, the greater the occurrence of feedback or resonance will be. This is a fact of life when trying to amplify acoustic instruments.Adding effects and power boosterOnce your main sound is set, you can now begin to add effects such as chorus or reverb in the effects loop and play with the power booster for soloing. The PZ-Pre's power booster will generate up to 8dB of additional gain. This should be plenty for soloing. Be careful! The powerful booster will augment your level to a point where it could introduce feedback; so try increasing small bits at a time.You can also add effects using the effects loop on the PZ-Pre. You may want some of these effects to be sent to the PA system while you may only want some to go to your stage amp. For instance adding a chorus pedal to your acoustic guitar is likely an effect that you will want sent to the PA system while adding reverb may be an effect you only want to ad to your on-stage amplifier.These of course are all based on personal preference and technical requirements based on the size and complexity of your sound system. Standard coaxial instrument cables are used to connect the effects going from the 'send' jack on the PZ-Pre to your effects and then back via the 'return' jack.The PZ-Pre effects loop is turned on using the boost footswitch and is activated by selecting the 'loop' or 'both' using the footswitch assign switch. If you do not need a power booster, you could dedicate the effects loop for your effects only. You can also use the power booster as a 'gain make-up' for effects that may need more punch by setting the switch to both. You can also add a delay, fuzz and chorus and boost the signal for an avant-garde electric violin solo without having to tap-dance to create the effect. One foot-stomp and everything goes on.Eliminating hum, buzz and system noiseThe PZ-Pre internal electronics employ what is called a 'virtual ground' whereby they create a internal ground for the safe operation much like an airplane. (Ever notice there are no ground wires connected to airplanes and they seem to work just fine?) But as soon as the PZ-Pre is connected to your stage amplifier or to the PA system, it acts like a bridge and connects all of these electrically charged devices together. This can lead to stray currents working their way into the sound system.The PZ-Pre is equipped with a ground lift switch for the XLR outputs. If you encounter buzz and hum, try depressing the ground lift switch as this often will help. There is also a second 180 degree polarity reverse switch on the main PA output that is designed to help reduce stage feedback or reverse the electrical polarity on the XLR when using the PZ-Pre with older pre-AES standard equipment. (AES = Audio Engineering Society
- Pin-1 ground, pin-2 hot, pin-3 not cold).
Standard input impedance: 16.8k Ohm at input jack ('PZB' switch out)
Piezo input impedance: 10meg Ohm at input jack ('PZB' switch in)
Output impendence: 1k Ohm
PZB Booster level: 10dB
Low cut roll-off:
Position 1: 75Hz
Notch Freq. range: 56Hz to 330Hz
Notch Q: Setting 1: -8dB
Setting 2: -15dB
LOW: +/- 12dB @75Hz
MID: +/- 12dB @82Hz to 5.6kHz
HIGH: +/- 12dB @ 7.5kHz
Boost level: 12dB
Effects send & receive: -10dB
FX loop impedance:
Send: 1k Ohm
Receive: 15k Ohm
Polarity: 180 degree switch (absolute phase reversal)
Input-1: 1/4" unbalanced
Input-2: 1/4" unbalanced
Insert Send/Receive: 1/4" unbalanced
Amp output: 1/4" unbalanced, Hi-Z, 1k Ohm
Tuner output: 1/4" unbalanced, Hi-Z, 6.8k Ohm
Pre-EQ output: XLR balanced mic level 600 Ohms
Post-EQ output: XLR balanced mic level 600 Ohms
Three: Mute, Boost, Toggle 1-2
Heavy-duty high-cycle switches
LED indicators: Large 3mm OD ultra-bright LED indicators for:
mute, boost, Ch-1 & Ch-2 toggle status
Switching: Opto-coupler assisted, 5msec Rise time
Construction: 14 gauge steel, baked enamel finish
Size (W x D x H): 8 x 4 1/4 x 2" (205 x 110 x 51mm)
Weight: 2.7lbs (1.2kg)
Warranty: Radial 3-year limited warranty
When will I receive my shipment?
We ship on business days (Saturday, Sunday, and holidays are not business days). Packages ship from Mississippi, Nevada, New Jersey, or Ohio -- we cannot guarantee that any product will ship from a specific warehouse. Expedited Shipping (1-Day Air and 2-Day Air) is the only way to guarantee that you will receive an item within a certain time frame. Delivery estimates for expedited shipping options are listed on the product page for the item in question. All expedited shipments are delivered Monday-Friday.
Ground Shipping typically takes 1-4 business days from the date of shipment (for orders within the 48 contiguous United States). Residential ground and Free 2-Day shipments are delivered Tuesday-Saturday. Commercial ground and Free 2-Day shipments are delivered Monday-Friday. Make sure to select the proper address type for your address in checkout, as delays may occur if your selection is incorrect.
For APO/FPO customers, all orders ship via USPS. Expedited shipping is not available. Tracking for these orders is not available.
For customers shipping to a PO Box, the order may need to be shipped via USPS. For this reason, expected delivery dates cannot be guaranteed.
Do you ship to my location?
For most products shipping to the continental United States, customers may choose Ground, 2-Day Air, or 1-Day Air delivery. We also ship to Alaska and Hawaii; however, due to carrier restrictions, we cannot ground-ship to those states.
In addition, we ships to the following destinations, though some restrictions apply:
- Puerto Rico
- U.S. Territories
See instructions below for how to search the site by our eligible shipping destinations.
Note: We cannot change a shipping address on an order after it has shipped. If an order is returned because it couldn't be received at the listed shipping address, we will accept the return but will not refund the shipping charges.
We ship a lot of our most popular gear to Canada! To determine if item(s) ship to Canada, add the item(s) to your cart and enter your shipping postal code. Items that ship to Canada are sent via International Air, and delivery is typically 2-5 business days from the date of shipment.
Canadian orders are charged in U.S. dollars. Actual charges are dependent on your bank's conversion rate. Your bank may assess additional fees for international orders.
Although items shipped to Canada receive their full factory warranty, they must be returned to a United States service center for repairs. We're not responsible for any shipping or customs fees incurred in such a case.
We ship many items to Puerto Rico. To determine if item(s) ship to Puerto Rico, add the item(s) to your cart and enter your shipping zip code. Eligible items ship via International Air, and typically arrive 2-5 business days from the date of shipment.
We ship to APO/FPO addresses for free, though over-sized items may be ineligible. To determine if item(s) ship to your APO/FPO address, add the item(s) to your cart and enter your shipping zip code.
We ship eligible products to American Samoa, the Federated States of Micronesia, Guam, the Marshall Islands, the Northern Mariana Islands, Palau, and the Virgin Islands. Eligible items typically arrive 2-7 business days from the date of shipment.
What about customs fees?
Please be aware of customs fees such as taxes and duties, which are not included in our shipping charges. Customs fees vary from location to location. Please check with your local customs office for more information on the fees in your area. If you refuse to pay these fees, your order will not be delivered. We cannot refund shipping charges if an item is returned due to refusal to pay fees, and a restocking fee may be applied to cover the cost of return shipping. Customs fees are non-refundable.
Which items ship immediately?
Most orders ship the same business day your order is placed when you place a valid order before the shipping deadline.
Immediate shipment is available Monday-Friday. A valid order placed before 5 p.m. EST will ship the same day when using Ground or Free 2-Day shipping. Ground and Free 2-Day shipping orders placed after 5 p.m. EST will ship the next business day. Many orders using an expedited shipping method (2 Day Air or Next Day Air), and placed before 10 p.m. EST, will ship the same day.
Shipment and availability information updates from our warehouse to our website almost in real time. We are highly confident of the status of each item when you view a page. However, we do not reserve inventory being viewed or even placed in shopping carts, so we cannot guarantee an item's availability until you have placed your order. In particular, if you have been in the checkout area for more than about 10 minutes, we do recommend that you refresh the page to get the most current inventory prior to checking out.
What is a valid order?
A valid order is for a valid item at a valid price, placed with a credit card with complete and verifiable address and other information. Details.
Does immediate shipment mean immediate delivery?
Once an order is shipped, our carriers (Federal Express and UPS) typically guarantee a service time for when the order will be delivered to you. Our carriers have a very good record of delivering at their promised service time. We will ship immediately, and on all items, we will refund expedited shipping charges if the carrier's service levels for your chosen shipping method are not met.
If a product is in stock, is there any reason it will not ship immediately?
Exceptions are very unusual, but here are some examples of reasons that might prevent us from shipping immediately:
- Warehouse, call center, or web operations lose power or telecom connectivity.
- Warehouse, call center, or web operations lose capability due to adverse weather (blizzard), safety threat, or other factors.
What can I do if I don't feel you've lived up to your guarantees?
If you ever feel we have not lived up to any of our guarantees, we want to know about it -- and we want a chance to do right if we agree. Contact Us.