Guitar Preamp Pedals | Top 12 Best Preamp Pedals for Guitar 2019

Best Guitar Preamp Pedals

What is a Guitar Preamp?

A preamp or “preamplifier” is a piece of equipment used to help increase the dB volume of an inputted microphone signal, to reach what is known as ‘line-level’, which is the expected dB level to which all recording equipment, including Studio EQ, Compressors work with.

For more information on Preamps, take a look at Wiki.

Therefore, a guitar preamp simply increases the inputted guitar signal, to reach line level, in preparation for additional processing through the use of other guitar effects such as guitar loop pedals, guitar reverb pedals, etc. Because of the pedal’s functionality, it is placed early in the signal chain, before any other guitar processor.

Within the guitar pedal context, both guitar preamp pedals and guitar booster pedals have a similar role, with both units increasing the input signal dB level. However, a preamp pedal will distinctly increase this input signal to what is known as ‘line level‘ which can be described as the nominal signal level to which a device operates at, expressed in decibels, against a standard reference voltage. Without going overtly into depth, the purpose of preamp pedal is to ensure db synchronicity between audio equipment sources.

Guitar preamps are used in both studio recording environments, and in live performance settings.

Before we go into explaining our choices on what are the best preamp pedals, we want to firstly discuss the way in which we’ve ordered the list, so that you can easily find the most suitable pedal.

We’ve arranged the list primarily based on ‘Preamp Pedals for Electric Guitar‘ and ‘Preamp Pedals for Acoustic Guitar‘ , and then within each sub-section, the products are arranged based on price, from the least expensive to the most expensive… We hope that’s clear!

Additionally, if you’re looking for Bass Preamp Pedals, visit our article here.

Before finally going into talking about the pedals, we would really like to recommend that you take a listen to all of the video demonstrations before making your final decision on which guitar preamp is most suited to your needs.

However, if you’re in a tush, we’ve featured the unique aspects of each pedal, which really stood out for us. Alongside this, we’ve listed our ‘Editor’s Recommendation‘.

Well, let’s get to it!¬†What are the 12 top guitar pre-amp pedals of 2019?


Top guitar preamp pedals

ProductTypePriceShopComments
Donner Incredible V Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Effect PedalPreamp for Electric Guitar$Buy on AmazonEditor's 'Budget' Recommendation
Donner Sweet Juice Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Effect PedalPreamp for Electric Guitar$Buy on Amazon
Donner Black Devil Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Guitar Effect PedalPreamp for Electric Guitar$Buy on Amazon
Donner Green Land Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Pedal Effect Preamp for Electric Guitar$Buy on Amazon
Dunlop EP101 Echoplex Preamp Preamp for Electric Guitar$$Buy on Amazon
Voodoo Lab Giggity Analog Mastering Preamp Guitar Processor Preamp for Electric Guitar$$$Buy on AmazonEditor's 'Mid-Range' Recommendation
EarthQuaker Devices Bows Germanium Preamp Guitar Effects PedalPreamp for Electric Guitar$$$Buy on Amazon
Xotic BB Preamp Pedal for GuitarPreamp for Electric Guitar$$$Buy on Amazon
Tech 21 Q-Strip EQ and Preamp PedalPreamp for Electric Guitar$$$$Buy on AmazonEditor's 'Premium Priced Recommendation
Boss AD-2 Acoustic Preamp PedalAcoustic Guitar Preamp$$Buy on Amazon
Radial AC Driver Acoustic Guitar PreampAcoustic Guitar Preamp$$$Buy on Amazon
Boss AD-10 Acoustic Guitar PreampAcoustic Guitar Preamp$$$$$Buy on Amazon


Top Preamp Pedals for Electric Guitar

The units featured below are designed to be used with electric guitars:


Donner Incredible V Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Effect Pedal –¬†$¬†– Budget Priced¬†[Editor’s ‘Budget’ Recommendation]

Fender 65 Twin Reverb Amp and Marshall Super Lead 1959 Emulation

Donner Incredible V Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Pedal

Features

  • Guitar Preamp Pedal manufactured by Donner
  • Small in size, ideal for any pedalboard
  • Durable Metal Chassis for internal protection
  • Positive Amazon Review Ratings [Read here]
  • Monophonic Input & Output
  • Digital Circuitry Design
  • 3-band EQ settings
  • Built-in Reverb & Amp Cab Simulator
  • The Amp Simulator Sound is based on Fender 65 Twin Reverb¬†Amp and Marshall Super Lead 1959 Tube Amplifier Head
  • Runs on a 9V Power Supply (Not Included – Linked to below)
  • LED light when¬†the pedal is engaged
  • True Bypass

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x 1/4″ jack input
  • 1 x 1/4″ jack output
  • A 9v Power adapter is needed for operation. This is sold separately (Boss SYB-5 9v power adapter – Buy on Amazon)
  • Weight : 0.23kg
  • Dimensions : 3.7″ x 1.7″ x 2.0″ inches

Customer Review Rating

The Donner Incredible V Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Pedal has received an average rating of 5* out of 5 stars from 3 Amazon customer review¬†–¬†Read these reviews here

Summary

The Donner Incredible V Preamp pedal is the first preamp unit that we’re featuring within this list of the best preamp pedals for guitar. The reason we’re featuring this particular unit, alongside many of the other donner pedals within this series is simply because they have a number of fantastic qualities, including being extremely affordable, with a good sound and build quality.

The unit itself is extremely small in size, perfect for the musician without much pedal space, and being priced at $69.99, it’s the joint-cheapest unit that you can get.

What about the features? Well, this pedal is obviously a guitar preamp… But additionally, it has reverb functionality and also acts as an amp simulator.

This is where it gets interesting, the processor has two amp simulator channels, one in which it emulates the sound of a classic Fender 65 Twin Reverb Amplifier, providing a nice clean guitar tone (the inbuilt LED lights up green when this mode is engaged), and the other is based on the Marshall Super Lead 1959 Tube Amp Head, which provides more of a gritty, crunch tone (the inbuilt LED lights up red when this mode is engaged)

The unit provides True Bypass, meaning that the input/output signal is not interfered with when the processor is disengaged.

So how exactly does it sound?

As you can hear from the video demonstration, the 65 Twin Reverb Amp emulation sounds very clean, but can still provide some slightly overdriven tones when the gain is turned up. However, if you’re really looking to get that overdriven tone,¬†the Marshall Super Lead 1959 setting does not disappoint… It really does sound quite fantastic, especially considering the small price-tag you pay for all of this functionality.

What would we improve?

Well, we like to be critical here at Sustain Punch, and although we think that this is a fantastic unit, there could be some improvements here and there, potentially for the next version.

For example, we think that the ability to save amplifier presets would be a wonderful feature, especially for those who need to switch between presets during a song, in a live performance.

However, other than this, we don’t think there’s much left to improve, since it sounds awesome!

This brings us onto the next section.

Who is this pedal for?

This unit is for the guitarist who wants a small, compact preamp pedal for their pedalboard. Additionally, since we’ve featured several of these Donner units within this list, this unit is most definitely suited towards the guitarist who likes the sound/video demonstration, and the amplifier emulation settings provided.

However, before you decide, take a look at the video demonstration of the Donner Incredible V Mini Preamp pedal in action.

Available on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon



Donner Sweet Juice Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Effect Pedal –¬†$¬†– Budget Priced

Fender 65 Twin Reverb Amp and Orange AD30 Amp Emulation

Donner Sweet Juice Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Processor Pedal

Features

  • Guitar Preamp Pedal manufactured by Donner
  • Small in size, ideal for any pedalboard
  • Durable Metal Chassis for internal protection
  • Positive Amazon Review Ratings [Read here]
  • Monophonic Input & Output
  • Digital Circuitry Design
  • 3-band EQ settings
  • Built-in Reverb & Amp Cab Simulator
  • The Amp Simulator Sound is based on Fender 65 Twin Reverb¬†Amp and Orange AD30 Vintage Amplifier Head
  • Runs on a 9V Power Supply (Not Included – Linked to below)
  • LED light when¬†the pedal is engaged
  • True Bypass

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x 1/4″ jack input
  • 1 x 1/4″ jack output
  • A 9v Power adapter is needed for operation. This is sold separately (Boss SYB-5 9v power adapter – Buy on Amazon)
  • Weight : 0.23kg
  • Dimensions : 3.7″ x 1.7″ x 2.0″ inches

Customer Review Rating

The¬†Donner Sweet Juice Mini Electric Guitar Preamp¬†has received an average rating of 5* out of 5 stars from 3 Amazon customer review¬†–¬†Read these reviews here

Summary

The¬†Donner Sweet Juice Mini Preamp pedal is the second preamp unit that we’re featuring within this list of the best preamp pedals for guitar. The reason we’re featuring this particular unit, alongside many of the other Donner pedals within this series is simply because they have a number of fantastic qualities, including being extremely affordable, with a good sound and build quality.

Again, the unit itself is extremely small in size, perfect for the musician without much pedal space, and being priced at $69.99, it’s the joint-cheapest unit that you can get.

What about the features? Well, this pedal is obviously a guitar preamp… But additionally, it has reverb functionality and also acts as an amp simulator.

This is where it gets interesting, the processor has two amp simulator channels, one in which it emulates the sound of a classic Fender 65 Twin Reverb Amplifier, providing a nice clean guitar tone (the inbuilt LED lights up green when this mode is engaged), and the other is based on the Orange AD30 Vintage Amp Head, which provides more of a gritty, crunch tone (the inbuilt LED lights up red when this mode is engaged)

The unit provides True Bypass, meaning that the input/output signal is not interfered with when the processor is disengaged.

So how exactly does it sound?

As you can hear from the video demonstration, the 65 Twin Reverb Amp emulation sounds very clean, but can still provide some slightly overdriven tones when the gain is turned up.

However, if you’re really looking to get that overdriven tone,¬†the Orange AD30 setting does not disappoint… It sounds a little thicker than the ‘Marshall Super Lead 1959 setting’ which is featured in the¬†Donner Incredible V Preamp pedal… And so if you like that thick sounding overdrive, this may be more suited to your playing style.¬† Again, this unit sounds really good, especially considering the small price-tag you pay for all of this functionality.

What would we improve?

As previously explained with the Donner Incredible V Preamp pedal, the Donner Sweet Juice unit is the same in which it does not allow the user to save amplifier presets, which would be an extremely useful feature to have, especially for those who need to switch between presets during a song, in a live performance.

However, other than this, we don’t think there’s much left to improve, since it sounds awesome!

This brings us onto the next section.

Who is this pedal for?

This unit is for the guitarist who wants a small, compact preamp pedal for their pedalboard. Additionally, since we’ve featured several of these Donner units within this list, this unit is most definitely suited towards the guitarist who likes the sound/video demonstration, and the amplifier emulation settings provided.

However, before you decide, take a look at the video demonstration of the Donner Sweet Juice Mini Preamp pedal in action.

Available on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon



Donner Black Devil Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Guitar Effect Pedal¬†–¬†$¬†– Budget Priced

For the rocker. With two channels of Peavey 6505 Amp Emulation

Donner Black Devil Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Guitar Effect Pedal

Features

  • Guitar Preamp Pedal manufactured by Donner
  • Small in size, ideal for any pedalboard
  • Durable Metal Chassis for internal protection
  • Positive Amazon Review Ratings [Read here]
  • Monophonic Input & Output
  • Digital Circuitry Design
  • 3-band EQ settings
  • Built-in Reverb & Amp Cab Simulator
  • The Amp Simulator Sound is based on two channels of the¬†Peavey 6505¬†Amplifier.
  • Runs on a 9V Power Supply (Not Included – Linked to below)
  • LED light when¬†the pedal is engaged
  • True Bypass

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x 1/4″ jack input
  • 1 x 1/4″ jack output
  • A 9v Power adapter is needed for operation. This is sold separately (Boss SYB-5 9v power adapter – Buy on Amazon)
  • Weight : 0.23kg
  • Dimensions : 3.7″ x 1.7″ x 2.0″ inches

Customer Review Rating

The¬†Donner Black Devil Mini Electric Guitar Preamp¬†has received an average rating of 5* out of 5 stars from 2 Amazon customer review¬†–¬†Read these reviews here

Summary

The¬†Donner Black Devil Mini Preamp pedal is the third preamp unit that we’re featuring within this list of the best preamp pedals for guitar. The reason we’re featuring this particular unit, alongside many of the other Donner pedals within this series is simply because they have a number of fantastic qualities, including being extremely affordable, with a good sound and build quality.

Again, the unit itself is extremely small in size, perfect for the musician without much pedal space, and being priced at $69.99, it’s the joint-cheapest unit that you can get.

What about the features? Well, this pedal is obviously a guitar preamp… But additionally, it has reverb functionality and also acts as an amp simulator.

This is where it gets interesting, the processor has two amp simulator channels, both which emulate the sound of a classic Peavey 6505, one channel simulates the lead channel, and the other simulates the rhythm channel.

The rhythm setting sounds somewhat overdriven (inbuilt LED lights up green when this mode is engaged), but it is the lead setting that when engaged (inbuilt LED lights up red when this mode is engaged), is where the magic happens! It provides a tone which can only be described as every rock-guitarists soloing dream-tone! With swooping overdrive, which when combined with the onboard reverb and EQ parameter controls, really makes for a memorable sound.

The unit provides True Bypass, meaning that the input/output signal is not interfered with when the processor is disengaged.

So how exactly does it sound?

As you can hear from the video demonstration, the Peavey 6505 emulation sounds anywhere from mildly overdrive (on rhythm channel setting) to largely overdriven (lead channel setting)

When comparing this against the other Donner pedals within the series, it’s clear that this unit is catered more towards the guitarist who likes to play swooping solos, and wants a unit which excels at providing overdriven tones.

Again, this unit sounds really good, especially considering the small price-tag you pay for all of this functionality.

What would we improve?

As previously explained with other Donner units within this list, the Black Devil unit does not allow the user to save amplifier presets, which would be an extremely useful feature to have, especially for those who need to switch between presets during a song, in a live performance.

However, other than this, we don’t think there’s much left to improve, since it sounds awesome!

This brings us onto the next section.

Who is this pedal for?

This unit is perfect for the guitarist who’s a fan of swooping guitar solos, and wants to be able to emulate this with a choice of overdriven guitar tones.

Additionally, the Black Devil pedal is very similar to the other Donner pedals, being very small in size, with durable outer metal casing, for good protection, making it suitable for gigging/touring.

However, before you decide, take a look at the video demonstration of the Donner Black Devil Mini Preamp pedal in action.

Available on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon



Donner Green Land Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Pedal Effect¬†–¬†$¬†– Budget Priced

Fender Bassman Amplifier and the Marshall JTM45 Amplifier Emulation

Donner Green Land Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Pedal Effect

Features

  • Guitar Preamp Pedal manufactured by Donner
  • Small in size, ideal for any pedalboard
  • Durable Metal Chassis for internal protection
  • Positive Amazon Review Ratings [Read here]
  • Monophonic Input & Output
  • Digital Circuitry Design
  • 3-band EQ settings
  • Built-in Reverb & Amp Cab Simulator
  • The Amp Simulator Sound is based on Fender Bassman¬†Amplifier and the¬†Marshall JTM45¬†Vintage Amplifier.
  • Runs on a 9V Power Supply (Not Included – Linked to below)
  • LED light when¬†the pedal is engaged
  • True Bypass

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x 1/4″ jack input
  • 1 x 1/4″ jack output
  • A 9v Power adapter is needed for operation. This is sold separately (Boss SYB-5 9v power adapter – Buy on Amazon)
  • Weight : 0.23kg
  • Dimensions : 3.7″ x 1.7″ x 2.0″ inches

Customer Review Rating

The¬†Donner Green Land Mini Electric Guitar Preamp¬†has received an average rating of 5* out of 5 stars from 1 Amazon customer review¬†–¬†Read these reviews here

Summary

The¬†Donner¬†Green Land Mini Preamp pedal is the fourth and final preamp unit that we’re featuring within this list of the best preamp pedals for guitar.

The reason we’re featuring this particular unit, alongside many of the other donner pedals within this series is simply because they have a number of fantastic qualities, including being extremely affordable, with a good sound and build quality.

Again, the unit itself is extremely small in size, perfect for the musician without much pedal space, and being priced at $69.99, it’s the joint-cheapest unit that you can get.

What about the features? Well, this pedal is obviously a guitar preamp… But additionally, it has reverb functionality and also acts as an amp simulator.

This is where it gets interesting, the processor has two amp simulator channels, both which emulate the sound of a Fender Bassman and a Marshall JTM45.

As you can hear from the video demonstration, both settings have nice-sounding amp simulators, with the Marshall JTM45 setting being the more overdriven, ‘out of control’ sounding of the two.

The unit provides True Bypass, meaning that the input/output signal is not interfered with when the processor is disengaged.

So how exactly does it sound?

As you can hear from the video demonstration, the Fender Bassman setting has a bluesy aspect to the sound, in comparison to the more overdriven Marshall JTM45.

When comparing this unit against the other Donner pedals¬†within the series, it’s clear that this unit caters more towards the guitarist who likes to play bluesy riffs, with the Fender Bassman amp preset being particularly accommodating for this sound.

Again, this unit sounds really good, especially considering the small price-tag you pay for all of this functionality.

What would we improve?

As previously explained with other Donner units within this list, the Green Land unit does not allow the user to save amplifier presets, which would be an extremely useful feature to have, especially for those who need to switch between presets during a song, in a live performance.

However, other than this, we don’t think there’s much left to improve, since it sounds awesome!

This brings us onto the next section.

Who is this pedal for?

This unit is perfect for the guitarist who’s a fan of bluesy-sounding guitar riffs, and a warm textured overdrive.

Additionally, the Green Land unit is very simular to the other Donner pedals, being very small in size, with durable outer metal casing, for good protection, making it suitable for gigging/touring.

However, before you decide, take a look at the video demonstration of the Donner Black Devil Mini Preamp pedal in action.

Available on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon



Dunlop EP101 Echoplex Preamp –¬†$$¬†– Moderately Priced

A throwback to the Legendary Echoplex preamp unit in the 60’s

Dunlop EP101 Echoplex Preamp Processor

Features

  • Guitar Preamp Pedal manufactured by Jim Dunlop
  • Small in size, ideal for any pedalboard
  • Durable Metal Chassis for internal protection
  • Positive Amazon Review Ratings [Read here]
  • Monophonic Input & Output
  • Based on the Legendary ‘Echoplex EP-3’
  • Simple to use with one Gain Knob, providing +11 dB of boost
  • Runs on a 9V Power Supply (Not Included – Linked to below)
  • LED light when¬†the pedal is engaged
  • True Bypass
  • Owners Manual

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x 1/4″ jack input
  • 1 x 1/4″ jack output
  • A 9v Power adapter is needed for operation. This is sold separately (Boss SYB-5 9v power adapter – Buy on Amazon)
  • Weight : 0.23kg
  • Dimensions : 3.7″ x 1.7″ x 2.0″ inches

Customer Review Rating

The¬†Jim Dunlop EP101 Echoplex Preamp¬†for electric guitar has received an average rating of 4* out of 5 stars from 14 Amazon customer review¬†–¬†Read these reviews here

Summary

The EP101 by Jim Dunlop is a modern take on the iconic Echoplex EP-3 Delay unit. The Echoplex EP-3 was primarily used in the 1960’s and onwards, being famous for its incredible delays, but also for the fact that the delay functionality could be disabled, and guitarists could simply run their signal through the internal vaccum tubes, which were really state of the art in the 1960s.

The sound achieved by running a guitar signal through the Echoplex EP-3 got guitarists all over the world wanting to own one, with an endless list of famous guitarists being noted as using it, to name a few Brian May, Jimmy Page, Carlos Santana, Eddie Van Halen, Andy Summers, Neil Young and many more.

Years later, this sound is still desired, and Jim Dunlop’s EP101 is a throwback to this legendary unit, recreating the EP-3’S front end, by using a field-effect transistor (FET) and following the same signal path as the original unit.

The EP101 is true to the original unit, being extremely minimal in the available control parameters… Therefore it features only a gain knob, which gives +11 dB of boost.

In contrast to the original unit, the EP101 is built to withstand physical punishment, whether that’s from heavy foot-pressure or lots of touring, you simply don’t need to worry about it.

The unit provides True Bypass, meaning that the input/output signal is not interfered with when the processor is disengaged.

So how exactly does it sound?

As you can hear from the video demonstration, the EP101 unit really adds a vintage-sounding quality to your guitar’s overall tone. And as you can hear, when that gain knob is turned all the way to number 9, the slight overdrive of this preamp cuts through the mix.

What would we improve?

Nothing!

Who is this pedal for?

This pedal is for the guitarist who’s a fan of the original Echoplex sound, and wants a modern-styled pedal, which is both compact and strong, to help replicate that lovely vintage sound.

However, before you decide, take a look at the video demonstration of the Jim Dunlop EP101 Echoplex Preamp pedal in action.

Available on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon 




Voodoo Lab Giggity Analog Mastering Preamp Guitar Processor¬†–¬†$$$¬†– Mid-Range Priced

High quality sound, design and versatile tone shaping, 5-year warranty. Another all in one pedal

Voodoo Lab Giggity Analog Mastering Preamp Guitar Processor

Features

  • Guitar Preamp Pedal manufactured by VooDoo Lab
  • Hand built in the USA
  • Durable Metal Chassis for internal protection
  • Positive Amazon Review Ratings [Read here]
  • Monophonic Input & Output
  • 4-Unique Preamp / Gain Voicings
  • 2-Band EQ options with use of ‘Body’ and ‘Air’ knobs
  • Distortion/Overdrive/Compression using the ‘Loudness’ (Gain) knob
  • Runs on a 9V Power Supply (Not Included – Linked to below)
  • LED light when¬†the pedal is engaged
  • True Bypass via gold contact relay
  • 5-Year Manufacturers Warranty
  • Owners Manual

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x 1/4″ jack input
  • 1 x 1/4″ jack output
  • A 9v Power adapter is needed for operation. This is sold separately (Boss SYB-5 9v power adapter – Buy on Amazon)
  • Weight : 0.87kg
  • Dimensions : 7.0″ x 6.0″ x 3.0″ inches

Customer Review Rating

The¬†Voodoo Lab Giggity Preamp¬†for electric guitar has received an average rating of 5* out of 5 stars from 11 Amazon customer review¬†–¬†Read these reviews here

Summary

The ‘Giggity’ preamp pedal by Voodoo Lab is certainly a multi-functional unit, capable of providing multiple types of high-quality preamp processing, overdrive/distortion, EQ and Compression. Not only that, but this unit is hand-made in the USA, and features a 5-year manufacturers warranty, which simply proves the confidence that VooDoo Lab have in their products.

As for the company themselves, VooDoo Lab have been designing and building premium-grade music equipment since 1986, from their facility in Northern California.

So let’s talk more about the pedal itself. Well, it provides 4 unique-sounding pre-amp settings, that can be accessed through the central control knob. These settings can all be heard in the video demonstration featured below.

The sound can then be further edited with the use of EQ settings, via the¬† ‘Body’ and ‘Air’ knobs, and the signal can then optionally be overdriven, also adding compression to the sound with the use of the ‘Loudness’ knob.

The unit provides True Bypass, meaning that the input/output signal is not interfered with when the processor is disengaged.

So how exactly does it sound?

As you can hear from the video demonstration, this unit really changes the tonality of the input signal, adding emphasis and shine to the overall sound (depending on the chosen preset that is engaged).

You can really hear the fuzziness of the upper register when the ‘Loudness’ knob is turned up.

What would we improve?

It’s a really great sounding pedal, which is highly versatile and therefore suitable for almost any guitarist. However, similar to all of the other pedals that we have mentioned, this unit does not allow for preset saving, and therefore amongst all the choices you have, you are limited to the speed to which you can dial in your preset parameters.

However, if you are finding that 1, or 2, go-to tones that you’re simply running your signal through for the added tone, then this is not an issue for you!

Who is this pedal for?

Simply put, this unit provides premium-quality signal processing and a lot of functionality in a single unit.

Hence, if you’re looking for a preamp processor that is versatile in the tones that you can achieve, and additionally has a 5-year manufacturers warranty, then this is the pedal for you.

However, before you decide, take a look at the video demonstration of the Voodoo Lab Giggity preamp pedal in action.

Available on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon



EarthQuaker Devices Bows Germanium Preamp Guitar Effects Pedal –¬†$$$¬†– Mid-Range Priced

Simple to use, wonderful sound-quality with premium transistor circuitry

EarthQuaker Devices Bows Germanium Preamp Guitar Effects Pedal

Features

  • Guitar Preamp Pedal manufactured by EarthQuaker Devices
  • Designed around a rare NOS OC139 black glass transistor
  • Durable Metal Chassis for internal protection
  • Positive Amazon Review Ratings [Read here]
  • Monophonic Input & Output
  • Adjustable Level Control offering up to 15dB of gain
  • Tone Toggle for adjusting between ‘Full’ and ‘Treble’ mode
  • Runs on a 9V Power Supply (Not Included – Linked to below)
  • LED light when¬†the pedal is engaged
  • True Bypass with ‘soft-touch’ switching mechanism
  • Owners Manual

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x 1/4″ jack input
  • 1 x 1/4″ jack output
  • A 9v Power adapter is needed for operation. This is sold separately (Boss SYB-5 9v power adapter – Buy on Amazon)
  • Weight : 0.6kg
  • Dimensions : 4.75″ x 2.50″ x 2.35″ inches

Customer Review Rating

The¬†EarthQuaker Devices Bows Germanium¬†Preamp¬†for electric guitar has received an average rating of 4.9* out of 5 stars from 45 Amazon customer review¬†–¬†Read these reviews here

Summary

Bows Germanium preamp unit by EarthQuaker Devices is an impressive little pedal. We were first drawn to include this within our list due to the amount of incredibly positive reviews that the product has gained over a relatively short period of time, having a 4.9* average rating.

The unit itself is designed around a rare NOS OC139 black glass transistor, which is known to provide a clear fuzz sound, with no noise interference and an accurate overdrive. As we mentioned, these transistors are particularly hard to obtain, so you may even want to track down some spare ones if you decide to purchase this, in case you replace it 20-years from now.

The preamp is particularly easy to use, with the centrepiece of its functionality revolving around the ‘gain’ control knob, which provides a maximum signal gain boost of 15dB.

Additionally, the unit also features a ‘tone knob’ which has two set tonal settings, ‘full’ and ‘treble’. ‘Full’ provides a very warm sounding, thickening of the signal, also boosting the low-end frequencies. Whilst ‘Treble’ emulates a ‘cocked wah’ setting with an additional, yes you guessed it, boost in treble frequencies.

By turning up the gain knob in conjunction with both of these settings, you are able to get a touch of grit, overloading the pre-amp for a gentle overdrive.

The unit provides True Bypass, and has a ‘soft touch’ switching mechanism, which means that transitions between the processor being on/off are much quieter than a traditional pedal with true bypass functionality.

So how exactly does it sound?

As you can hear in the video demonstration, when the pedal is on ‘full’ mode, it really does provide a significant amount of low-end, bass frequencies to the overall guitar sound, providing a lot more presence to the tone. Additionally, this really helps if you’re using a guitar with single coils, where the signal is thinner sounding.

The pedal provides a nice amount of grit to the clean sounding guitar tone, and this can be heard even when the gain knob is at around 10 ‘o’ clock, i.e the preamp is not being overloaded too much… Which leaves plenty of headroom, and potential to dirty up the sound some more.

What would we improve?

There’s really nothing that we can say to improve with this pedal, since it’s clear from the review ratings (4.9/5.0 from 49 reviews) that the pedal satisfies its customers.

Who is this pedal for?

The pedal is for the guitarist who’s looking for an ultra-high quality preamp unit, with a rare transistor mechanism, which provides versatility in the range of tones that it can make.

However, before you decide, take a look at the video demonstration of the EarthQuaker Devices Bows Germanium Preamp pedal in action.

Available on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon




Xotic BB Preamp Pedal for Guitar –¬†$$$¬†– Mid-Range Priced

Compact, simple to use, optional battery power, potentially good for fitting on small pedalboards

Xotic BB Preamp Processor for Electric Guitar

Features

  • Guitar Preamp Pedal manufactured by Xotic Electronics
  • Durable Metal Chassis for internal protection
  • Positive Amazon Review Ratings [Read here]
  • Monophonic Input & Output
  • Capable of applying +30dB of clean boost
  • Adjustable +15dB 2-band EQ
  • Runs on a 9V Power Supply (Not Included – Linked to below) and/or 9V battery (Not Included)
  • LED light when¬†the pedal is engaged
  • True Bypass with ‘soft-touch’ switching mechanism
  • Owners Manual

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x 1/4″ jack input
  • 1 x 1/4″ jack output
  • A 9v Power adapter is needed for operation. This is sold separately (Boss SYB-5 9v power adapter – Buy on Amazon)
  • Weight : 0.28kg
  • Dimensions : 4.4″ x 2.4″ x 2.0″ inches

Customer Review Rating

The¬†Xotic BB¬†Preamp¬†for electric guitar has received an average rating of 4.8* out of 5 stars from 28 Amazon customer review¬†–¬†Read these reviews here

Summary

The Xotic BB preamp pedal is a compact, metal cased unit, ideal for taking on the road and touring with. We got word of this fantastic pedal after seeing so many people in the music community talking about it in a positive light, and so we knew that we had to learn more about the device.

Well, it’s a simple to use preamp pedal which provides up to 30dB of clean boost, featuring a 2-band EQ and providing the capability to be powered entirely by battery alone, for all of those occasions where a plug socket may just be slightly out of reach.

This unit is capable of providing a wide variety of sounds, from clean transparent tones to overdrive and hot-rod distortion.

The unit provides True Bypass, which means that when disengaged, the processor does not interfere with the input signal. Instead, this signal is routed directly to output.

So how exactly does it sound?

As you can hear in the video demonstration, when the unit is engaged, it can really add volume, presence and fullness to the overall guitar sound.

Additionally, depending on the interface parameters that have been set, it can provide more distorted sounds with the help of the gain knob, which when turned up can really beef up, and dirty the output signal.

What would we improve?

The unit has a lot of great customer feedback, with little to no negative reviews. Therefore it’s very hard for us to identify aspects of the pedal that could be improved.

Who is this pedal for?

The pedal is one of the most compact preamp pedals that we’ve featured within the list, and can be operated on battery-power alone, making it ideal of some musicians who may desire this feature.

However, before you decide, take a look at the video demonstration of the Xotic BB Preamp pedal in action.

Available on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon



Tech 21 Q-Strip EQ and Preamp Pedal –¬†$$$$¬†– Premium Priced

Incredible sound, premium-price and premium-quality

Tech 21 Q-Strip EQ and Preamp Pedal

Features

  • 4-Band Studio-Grade Guitar DI, EQ/Preamp Processor by Tech 21
  • All-Analog MOSFET Circuitry
  • Low-Noise Circuitry Design
  • High Compact unit, suitable for taking on the road
  • Rugged Metal Chassis to ensure protection for internal circuitry
  • Positive Amazon Review Ratings [Read here]
  • Features a HPF and LPF
  • 1 Red LED that lights when the processor is engaged
  • Monophonic Input & Dual Output (1/4 inch & XLR output)
  • 1/4 inch output fitted with a switchable +10db boost
  • Phantom Power for XLR Output
  • True Bypass
  • Power Adapter is required for operation, but not included
  • Tech 21 Q\Strip EQ/Preamp Unit – Owners Manual

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x 1/4″ jack input
  • 1 x 1/4″ jack output
  • 1 x XLR output
  • 9v Power adapter is needed for operation. This is sold separately (Boss SYB-5 9v power adapter – Buy on Amazon)
  • Weight: 0.51kg (May include product packaging)
  • Dimensions : 5.8″ x 4.8″ x 2.2″ inches¬†(May include product packaging)

Customer Review Rating

The Q\Strip EQ Processor by Tech 21 has received an average rating of 4.8* out of 5 stars from 6 Amazon customer review¬†–¬†Read these reviews here.

Summary

The Q\Strip by Tech21 is guitar EQ/Preamp and DI processing unit, marketed towards the premium-priced end of the market.

The unit itself was inspired by the famed solid-state recording consoles that existed within the 1960’s/70’s, which were known to provide that warm, thick analog sound that we all know and love. Tech 21 created the Q\Strip using all-analog MOSFET circuitry, alongside 4-bands of studio-grade EQ, inspired by the tone-shaping circuits of the classic console modules in the 60’s/70’s.

Because of this, the Q\Strip provides that warm sounding analog tone, which is why its average Amazon rating is 4.8/5.0! It has a high pass filter and low pass filter, alongside providing a +10db boost on the 1/4inch output signal.

Ok, so that’s all fantastic, but how does this unit actually sound?

As you can hear from the video demonstration, with the incredibly guitarist Pete Thorn playing, this processor certainly provides a refined, warm guitar tone! Now, we have to also admit that Pete is using some expensive gear, and so we cannot definitively say that all of this incredible tone is coming from the Q\Strip unit…. But it’s certainly contributing to the overall sound.

However, Pete certainly knows how to do a Guitar EQ Pedal demonstration, as he admits that he only uses the pedal’s EQ, with no post-recording EQ being added.

Also, what’s apparent is how versatile the Q\Strip processor is since Pete uses it on Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar and Bass.

Ok, so this leads us on to our next section

What would we improve?

Nothing! We really like how this pedal sounds, and the sheer amount of use that it can have for both recording and in a live performance… We understand that it’s a little more expensive than other units, but you’re paying for this incredible tone!

Who is this pedal for?

This is an extremely premium-sounding, all-analog EQ/Preamp unit, which is highly versatile! Therefore if you’re a guitarist who wants that analog sound, whilst the versatility to use it on multiple instruments in both a recording and live performance setting, this unit is for you!

However, before you decide, take a look at the video demonstration of the equalizer unit in action:

Available on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon




Top Preamp pedals for Acoustic Guitar

The units featured below are designed to be used with acoustic guitars:


Boss AD-2 Acoustic Preamp Pedal –¬†$$¬†– Moderately Priced

Solid build quality, reputable brand with a 5-year manufacturers warranty

Boss AD-2 Acoustic Preamp Processing Pedal

Features

  • Guitar Preamp Pedal manufactured by Boss (Roland Corporation)
  • Incredibly¬†Durable Metal Chassis for internal protection
  • Boss is known for producing high-quality music equipment
  • Positive Amazon Review Ratings [Read here]
  • Monophonic Input & Output
  • ‘Acoustic Resonance’ control allows for EQ adjustments
  • ‘Notch’ control helps dial out problem feedback frequencies
  • ‘Ambiance’ control adds natural reverb to the signal
  • Onboard mute (pedal control)
  • Runs on a 9V Power Supply (Not Included – Linked to below) and/or 9V battery (Not Included)
  • LED light when¬†the pedal is engaged
  • Buffered Bypass
  • 5-Year Manufacturers Warranty
  • Owners Manual

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x 1/4″ jack input
  • 2 x 1/4″ jack output
  • A 9v Power adapter is needed for operation. This is sold separately (Boss SYB-5 9v power adapter – Buy on Amazon)
  • Weight : 0.28kg
  • Dimensions : 2.3″ x 2.8″ x 5.1″ inches

Customer Review Rating

The Boss AD-2 Acoustic Preamp has received an average rating of 4.7* out of 5 stars from 13 Amazon customer review¬†–¬†Read these reviews here

Summary

The AD-2 is an acoustic preamp processing unit created by one of the most well-known, reputable music equipment brands on the market, Boss.

The unit itself is rather easy to operate, with it having three main interface control knobs. ‘Acoustic Resonance’ which controls the equalization that is applied to the input signal…As the knob is turned, the processor adjusts ‘multiple parameters’ to help you achieve your desired tone, making sure that you have the perfect sound for any style of playng.

The AD-2 also have an ‘Ambiance’ control, which adds studio-quality reverb to the signal.

Additionally, the ‘notch’ control feature allows the user to isolate a certain frequency range which is causing feedback.

The AD-2 pedal is capable of operating on both a 9V power supply, and/or a 9V battery, both of which are not included with the pedal, if you were to purchase it. The battery life during operation is around 6 hours, although we would highly recommend using this pedal

So how exactly does it sound?

Often when an acoustic guitar/electro-acoustic guitar is plugged into a PA system, it can sound completely different to how it usually sounds when being played acoustically. This is where the AD-2 really excels, in providing those frequencies that are lost… Giving the output signal that wonderfully full-sounding acoustic quality that we expect to hear.

As you can hear in the video demonstration, the AD-2 really adds the presence and vitality to the overall guitar sound. And with the additional features to add high-quality reverb, and also isolate problem (feedback) frequencies, it really is a great pedal.

What would we improve?

The unit has a lot of great customer feedback, with little to no negative reviews. Therefore it’s very hard for us to identify aspects of the pedal that could be improved.

Who is this pedal for?

The Boss AD-2 is ideal for the guitarist who wants a great sounding, reliable acoustic preamp unit, that will be sure to last for years! With Boss’s 5-Year Manufacturers Warranty, you can be sure that this pedal won’t let you down.

However, before you decide, take a look at the video demonstration of the Boss AD-2 preamp in action.

Available on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon



Radial AC Driver Acoustic Guitar Preamp¬†–¬†$$$¬†– Mid-Range Priced

Advanced anti-feedback phasing options, perfect for live acoustic performances

Radial AC Driver Acoustic Guitar Preamp

Features

  • Guitar Preamp Pedal manufactured by Radial Engineering
  • Incorporates Radial’s Class A Buffer Circuitry ensuring audio quality
  • Designed for Live Performance usage
  • Positive Amazon Review Ratings [Read here]
  • Mono Input & Triple Output
  • Footswitch muting, turns off all outputs except ‘Tuner Out’ for silent tuning
  • Low Cut Filter
  • 180′ Phase Switch to reverse the polarity of the XLR output (reducing feedback)
  • Notch Filter knob sets the central frequency for the filter
  • 3-Position Notch Switch to reduce certain feedback frequencies (Off, Normal & Deep)
  • Runs on a 9V Power Supply (Not Included – Linked to below)
  • LED light when¬†the pedal is engaged
  • Buffered Bypass
  • Owners Manual

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x 1/4″ jack input
  • 2 x 1/4″ jack output (Main output & Tuner Output)
  • 1 x XLR output (balanced)
  • A 9v Power adapter is needed for operation. This is sold separately (Boss SYB-5 9v power adapter – Buy on Amazon)
  • Weight : 0.63kg
  • Dimensions : 1.75″ x 3.75″ x 4.75″ inches

Customer Review Rating

The Radial Engineering Tonebone AC Driver Preamp has received an average rating of 5* out of 5 stars from 2 Amazon customer review¬†–¬†Read these reviews here

Summary

The AC Driver preamp by Radial Engineering is certainly a dark horse when it comes to the number of features it provides! This unassuming preamp really does come with a whole lot of functionality, even despite its small size.

The unit itself is designed for live usage, specifically as a DI to connect your guitar to the live PA system. What makes this unit great is the fact that you have three outputs, 1 is the main 1/4″ jack output, another is the XLR (balanced) output and the fina output is the ‘Tuner Out’. Due to the way in which Radial have designed the signal path, the user can use the ‘Mute’ footswitch to mute all of the outputs, except the ‘Tuner Out’ which is especially useful when tuning your guitar, or doing an instrument changeover.

The preamp allows the user to do a range of sound manipulations, including low-cut filtering, 180-degree polarity switching (on the XLR output) and Notch Switching, all of these controls are designed to help reduce feedback and enhance your acoustic guitar’s natural tonality.

So how exactly does it sound?

As you can hear in the video demonstration, the unit gives the acoustic guitar a nice warm, natural sound.

What would we improve?

The unit has a lot of great customer feedback, with little to no negative reviews. Therefore it’s very hard for us to identify aspects of the pedal that could be improved.

Who is this pedal for?

The Radial AC-Driver unit is for the acoustic guitarist who’s looking for multiple outputs, and potentially wants to play a set that requires a lot of tuning and/or guitar changeovers… Making this process particularly easy with the immediate use of the ‘mute’ pedal.

Oh and not to mention, this thing sounds great too!

However, before you decide, take a look at the video demonstration of the Radial Tonebone AC-Driver preamp in action.

Available on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon



Boss AD-10 Acoustic Guitar Preamp –¬†$$$$$¬†– Ultra Premium Priced

The all-in-one acoustic guitar preamp solution, with a 5-year warranty

Boss AD-10 Acoustic Guitar Preamp

Features

  • Guitar Preamp Pedal manufactured by Boss (Roland Corporation)
  • Incredibly¬†Durable Metal Chassis for internal protection
  • Boss is known for producing high-quality music equipment
  • Positive Amazon Review Ratings [Read here]
  • 4-Band EQ
  • Multi-Band Compressor with MDP Technology
  • Two Channels with independent EQ for connecting two instruments
  • Anti-Feedback Functions
  • Onboard Ambience, Delay, Chorus effects with multiple sound types and adjustable control parameters
  • Memory banks for storing 10 sound setups
  • Onboard Looper with 80 seconds of recording time
  • USB (Type B) intergration for DAW recording and Playback
  • Built-in Tuner
  • Runs on a 9V Power Supply (Not Included – Linked to below) and/or 6 AA batteries (Included)
  • LED light when¬†the pedal is engaged
  • Buffered Bypass
  • 5-Year Manufacturers Warranty
  • Owners Manual

Technical Specifications

  • 1 x 1/4″ jack input
  • 2 x 1/4″ jack output
  • A 9v Power adapter is needed for operation. This is sold separately (Boss SYB-5 9v power adapter – Buy on Amazon)
  • Weight : 1.3kg
  • Dimensions : 8.5″ x 6.3″ x 2.5″ inches

Customer Review Rating

The Boss AD-10 Acoustic Preamp has received an average rating of 4.7* out of 5 stars from 11 Amazon customer review¬†–¬†Read these reviews here

Summary

The Boss AD-10 is the ultimate acoustic guitar preamp/processing unit, and clearly the price-tag demonstrates this.

The AD-10 has a wide selection of useful functions and features, at its core, the AD-10 is a dual-channel acoustic preamp/DI pedal with premium audio quality, versatile sound shaping options and flexible connectivity [Boss]. All of these features are a direct consequence to the Acoustic Resonance processing that takes place inside the unit’s processor, bringing an extremely natural sounding acoustic sound to output, with shimmering highs, deep lows and a lot of mid-range presence.

Additionally, the AD-10 has anti-feedback controls, Compression settings, 4-Band EQ settings, Boost, Chorus, Filtering, Delay, Reverb, 10 memory banks for saving sound presets, an 80 second looper, USB integration for recording straight into your computer and a lot more… Just take a look at the demonstration video!

So how exactly does it sound?

As you can hear in the video demonstration, the AD-10 sounds extremely impressive, adding all of the acoustic characteristics that we want to hear from an acoustic guitar.

Because this unit has user-programmable presets and multiple foot-switches, it means that you can quickly switch between your guitar presets at the press of a button, guaranteeing that you’ll get the same sound each and every time you perform.

What would we improve?

This unit simply has everything that we would desire from an acoustic preamp/processing unit.

Who is this pedal for?

The Boss AD-10 is ideal for the guitarist who wants an acoustic preamp/processing unit which provides everything in one physical unit. It sounds fantastic, is extremely reliable and Boss even provide a standard 5-year manufacturers warranty for piece of mind.

However, before you decide, take a look at the video demonstration of the Boss AD-10 preamp in action.

Available on AmazonCheck Price on Amazon




Conclusion – Which Guitar Preamp Pedal is ideal for you?

As always, with our conclusive recommendations here at Sustain Punch, we like to make sure that all of our readers are accommodated for.

Therefore, all of the pedals in the article have been arranged by both primary functionality (Electric Guitar Preamp or Acoustic Guitar Preamp) and then by budget and their unique features.

However, for those who may not have time to read all of the article (as it is over 7000 words in length), but just want to know the key advantages to each pedal, and who it’s most suited for, we’ve created this section below:

Top Preamp Pedals for Electric Guitar

  • Donner Incredible V Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Effect Pedal –¬†$¬†– Budget PricedBuy on Amazon¬†–¬†Fender 65 Twin Reverb¬†Amp and Marshall Super Lead 1959 Emulation¬†[Editor’s ‘Budget Priced’ Recommendation]
  • Donner Sweet Juice Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Effect Pedal –¬†$¬†– Budget Priced¬†– Buy on Amazon¬†–¬†Fender 65 Twin Reverb¬†Amp and Orange AD30 Amp Emulation
  • Donner Black Devil Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Guitar Effect Pedal –¬†$¬†– Budget PricedBuy on Amazon¬†¬†–¬†For the rocker. With two channels of¬†Peavey 6505 Amp Emulation
  • Donner Green Land Mini Electric Guitar Preamp Pedal Effect – $¬†– Budget Priced – Buy on Amazon¬†¬†–¬†Fender Bassman¬†Amplifier and the¬†Marshall JTM45 Amplifier Emulation
  • Dunlop EP101 Echoplex Preamp –¬†$$ – Moderately Priced- Buy on Amazon¬†–¬†A throwback to the Legendary Echoplex preamp unit in the 60’s
  • Voodoo Lab Giggity Analog Mastering Preamp Guitar Processor –¬†$$$ – Mid-Range Priced – Buy on Amazon¬†¬†–¬†High quality sound, design and versatile tone shaping, 5 year warranty. Another all in one pedal¬†[Editor’s ‘Mid-Priced’ Recommendation]
  • EarthQuaker Devices Bows Germanium Preamp Guitar Effects Pedal –¬†$$$ – Mid-Range Priced – Buy on Amazon¬†¬†–¬†Simple to use, wonderful sound-quality with premium transistor circuitry
  • Xotic BB Preamp Pedal for Guitar –¬†$$$ – Mid-Range Priced – Buy on Amazon¬†¬†–¬†Compact, simple to use, optional battery power, potentially good for fitting on small pedalboards
  • Tech 21 Q-Strip EQ and Preamp Pedal –¬†$$$$¬†– Premium Priced¬†– Buy on Amazon¬†–¬†Incredible sound, premium-price and premium-quality¬†[Editor’s ‘Premium Priced Recommendation]

Top Preamp pedals for Acoustic Guitar

  • Boss AD-2 Acoustic Preamp Pedal –¬†$$ – Moderately PricedBuy on Amazon¬†¬†–¬†Solid build quality, reputable brand with a 5-year manufacturers warranty
  • Radial AC Driver Acoustic Guitar Preamp –¬†$$$¬†– Mid-Range PricedBuy on Amazon¬†–¬†Advanced anti-feedback phasing options, perfect for live acoustic performances
  • Boss AD-10 Acoustic Guitar Preamp –¬†$$$$$¬†–¬† Ultra Premium PricedBuy on Amazon¬†¬†–¬†The all-in-one acoustic guitar preamp solution, with a 5-year warranty

 

Guitar Tricks Free Trial