The OriginAL Valve Pre-DI Pedal making a hit at NAMM

IK Multimedia's MODO BASS

Ashdown Still Leading The Industry With Great Brittish Audio Gear At NAMM!

Ashdown EngineeringI was with Back Stage Indie Report coving the 2017 Summer NAMM in Nashville when I stumbled across a legendary name in music gear.  The unmistakable Aston Martin wings with the red “Ashdown Engineering” script across it.  Being a fan of this classic british technology for decades I had to stop a chat with the unassuming and approachable gentleman sitting quietly at the side of a small table with two glistening Ashdown red components.  The gentleman was happy to educate me about the audio products perched on the small rectangular table between us.  Though I have been involved in the industry for a long time, his level of detail was way above my pay grade.  It was obvious this was not just another engineering student who tweak a common design and was making them in his garage or or having them shipped in from a company in China.  No, this was something different.  This is where science met art and passion.  This was real and pure.   It took both hands to lift the small unit off the table.  I’m sure you can tell by now, I was impressed.  I wanted to know more.  I asked the gentleman how he was connected to Ashdown.  By his accent he was obviously a Britt.  He introduced himself as Mark Gooday the owner and Managing Director of Ashdown.  Being a gear geek myself, I have to admit I was a bit star-struck.  The Ashdown story started in 1997, but even in those early days, company founder Mark Gooday could’ve already easily been described as a bass amp veteran. Having already been one of the driving forces behind another leading UK manufacturer of bass amplification, Gooday had racked up awards and plaudits for his pioneering approach and then set his sights on even loftier aspirations.  Ashdown Engineering Mr. Gooday could not have been nicer and more down-to-earth.  He shared stories of the giants in the music industry that use his gear and how he works with them directly.  At times, even all the way to the concert stage.

We at Back Stage Indie Report have been doing a lot of follow-up on the Ashdown product line.  Though we have not had their most recent product in our studio yet.  Word on the “street” is that they are really something special.  We would like to share some of our research with you, our readers, and encourage you to take a long hard look at Ashdown!

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The OriginAL Valve Pre-DI Pedal is a valve driven pre-amplifier pedal like no other…

Ashdown EngineeringAfter a trivial name change, Ashdown are pleased to introduce: The OriginAL Valve Pre-DI Pedal.
 It’s all about the tone shaping with a preamp pedal. Shaping, sculpting and optimising bass tone before it hits the power stage is something that Ashdown are well versed in, having provided bassists with the best possible tone for two solid decades.

With their long spanning legacy in British bass amplification, Ashdown have taken things back to the key fundamentals of everything that makes a great bass amp with The OriginAL bass head. Offered in a beautifully formatted pedal form, The OriginAL Valve Pre-DI Pedal is a valve driven pre-amplifier pedal like no other.

Like all good pre-amp pedals, The OriginAL beautifully shapes the bass player’s clean signal whilst offering a foot-switchable valve powered overdrive in a single compact unit. Setting it apart from others, The OriginAL delivers superb quantities of both clean and overdriven bass tone, without one feature outshining the other. Crystal clear cleans and powerful overdriven growl – The OriginAL encompasses it all.

Starting in the top right corner, the -3dB Pad switch determines the whether the pedal is being used with a high or low output instrument and sets a clear signal path to the independent input control. With the signal at its optimal level, you then hit a defined set of features designed to enhance your tone. The OriginAL features a tried and tested, non-gimmicky 5-band EQ, varying the bass, low-mid, middle, hi-mid and treble.

The ‘Drive Gain’ control lets the player dial in the precise level of gain required, whilst the ‘Drive Level’ knob allows you to decide just how much you it you want. Dependent on your playing style and attack, by tweaking the Drive Gain and Level controls in harmony, you can range from a subtle gritty valve depth that can be used regularly, to a fully responsive bass overdrive for when those moments strike.
Whatever your desired output, the 12AX7 powered Valve Drive switch can be selected instantly by foot.
Ashdown Engineering
The output control regulates the output volume of the preamp pedal, whilst on the rear-end of the pedal, a DI out allows for the pedal to be fed the house, post EQ/Drive. A handy Ground Lift on the front of the pedal reduces the associated noise when connecting two signal paths.

Rounding off the feature-set on the 18-volt OriginAL pedal is an extremely useful headphone socket allowing for silent practice during those late night hotel room rehearsals, whilst the Line Input means you can jam along with your favourite tracks – the perfect practice device.

Symantec Corp.

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