Summer NAMM 2017: Ashdown has once again set out to please bass and acoustic players as it launches a trio of new products.
Bass offerings comprise the rebranded OriginAL Head, a 300-watt compact amp, plus the OriginAL Valve Pre-DI Pedal, which promises to provide all the tonal shaping a player could wish for - as well as, enticingly, a Showtime footswitch.
Acoustic guitarists get a new preamp with built-in reverb, as well as footswitches for Notch, Mute and Shape.
No word on RRPs or availability yet, but we’re sure all will become clear when Summer NAMM kicks off on 13 July.
For now, head on through the gallery for a closer look at each product, and visit Ashdown for more info.
Ashdown OriginAL Head
PRESS RELEASE: The OriginAL clinches the key fundamentals of everything that makes a great bass amp. This lightweight, portable and stripped back bass amp head takes Ashdown back to the origin of their tone.
Starting from the top, a passive/active switch determines the whether the amp is being used with a high or low output instrument and sets a clear signal path to the input control. From here, the player can fine-tune their input level using Ashdown’s trademark VU meter, which takes pride of place at the very centre of the amp head.
Simple yet Powerful EQ
With the signal at its optimal level, you then hit a defined set of features designed enhance your tone. The OriginAL features a tried and tested 5-band EQ, controlling your traditional bass, middle and treble with a lo-mid and hi-mid sitting comfortably either side of the variable middle control. The additional Shape control further sculpts your tone, lifting the frequencies that really count – like a smiley face on a graphic equalizer.
The output control regulates the output volume of the amp and wrapping up the features on the front panel is an easy to reach DI output, as well as an independent FX send and return, which allows the amp to set a very clear signal path with no interruptions.
Create the Perfect Rig
To the rear of this condensed unit is a very well considered headphone out, which doubles this gig-ready head as a great home practice device. 2 x jack speaker outputs with a minimum 4 ohm load provides flexible partnering options with Ashdown’s existing range of bass cabinets.
Ready for the Road
The OriginAL is a rugged little go-getter, using scuff proof paint over its steel & aloy chassis. Retaining a nice yet practical weight to it, with quality feeling control pots, The OriginAL is built to last a lifetime. Offered with a 5 year warranty, The OriginAL comes complete with auto protect voltage for global touring musicians and an adaptive temperature controlled fan for road and studio use.
Ashdown Acoustic Pre-Amp Reverb Pedal
PRESS RELEASE: For a long time, acoustic guitarists have strived to achieve a live sound to match their studio sound. Mediating the signal between instrument and PA and designed to bring out a more natural and clear sound form your acoustic guitar, the Ashdown Pre-Amp Reverb Pedal allows guitarists to get that studio sound quality night after night.
Tone shaping, level control and EQ are all really important features for acoustic players. The Ashdown Pre-Amp Reverb Pedal takes this bread-and-butter functionality one step further, with some value added extras.
The Pre-Amp Reverb Pedal has a very simple but effective layout that utilises many features of Ashdown’s popular Woodsman Acoustic Guitar amp range. It includes a notch filter, high and low (bass/treble) EQ rotary controls, Notch Frequency control for feedback resonance, as well as a footswitchable shape button - bringing the player up in the mix when it counts.
The pedal features dual inputs for both instrument (Jack) and microphone (XLR), so the player can go direct in with their guitar and use a microphone for vocals at the same time.
The input assignable reverb switch lets you choose which channel has reverb applied to it, meaning you can add reverb to your guitar, vocals or both at the same time. The welcomed addition of reverb to Ashdown’s acoustic line has allowed for the further tone shaping options that acoustic guitarists crave.
Just as you’d expect from any good acoustic pre-amp pedal, there’s also a very handy balanced DI output, allowing the guitarist to run their signal straight into the PA for ease of use. No need for a separate DI box. The Pre/Post switch at the rear of the pedal either sends a clean signal (pre) or signal with effects (post) to the balanced DI output.
Lastly, the true bypass mute switch allows for zero-colouration of your input signal when the pedal isn't in use.
Ashdown OriginAL Valve Pre-DI Pedal
PRESS RELEASE: The OriginAL beautifully shapes the bass player’s clean signal whilst offering a foot-switchable valve powered overdrive in a single compact unit. Crystal clear cleans and powerful overdriven growl, The OriginAL encompasses it all.
Setting the Level
The -3db Pad switch is used in conjunction with the input level control to suit the instrument in use, Low output basses will not require the use of the Pad but Higher Output basses may overload the pedal and require use of the Pad. Overloading the Input will simply create unwanted distortion and sound unpleasant, with experimentation the correct settings will be found for the Instruments you have.
Real Valve Overdrive
The Valve overdrive circuit fitted into the Original pre amplifier duplicates the kind of overdrive you would get from Valve Amplifier and works in exactly the same way as follows,The DRIVE GAIN controls the magnification of the signal from the instrument, at higher settings the Valve will be overdriven clipping and compressing the sound from the instrument, Higher harmonics and higher frequencies will be accentuated whilst the lower frequencies will be compressed. Just as in a valve amplifier this will be accompanied by a drastic increase in volume dependant entirely on the setting of the gain control.
To enable you to match the Overdriven signal level to the clean level a Drive level control is also provided. In this way it is therefore possible to change from a crystal clean sound to an overdriven sound of similar level. The Input Level control also has some bearing on this as it sets the starting point from which the overdrive circuit works so some experimentation with this in conjunction with Drive Gain and Drive Level will be required to get exactly the results you are looking for.
The OVERDRIVE is foot switchable and the pedal lights up blue when the overdrive is engaged. When using the footswitch it is advisable and desirable to avoid large increases in volume as sudden level changes may produce switching noise further down the line.
The shape Button when engaged provides a broadband mid scoop and is applied to the signal Before the Drive circuit or EQ.
The Equalisation circuit has 5 bands with the control frequencies centred around 100Hz , 340Hz, 680Hz, 1.6KHz and 7KhZ. The associated filters are of a low Q type and therefore there is considerable overlap between frequencies, which ensures a smooth response. Since the pedal has been designed to be used with other equipment such as mixers and amplifiers etc. which will invariably have more on board Equalisation the control range has been tailored accordingly.
The output control controls the signal from the pedal to the connected equipment via the ¼” JACK socket. When this output is in use the Phones output is unavailable. This jack socket has a PERMANENT ground. Adjust the output level to suit the connected equipment. NOTE that this control does NOT adjust the DI output This control also functions as the VOLUME control for the inbuilt headphone amplifier. Headphones can be connected on the rear panel via the 3.5 mm 3 pole MINI Jack.
The Line Input is located on the rear panel below the PHONES out, this is again a 3.5mm MINI Jack the level control is used to mix the line signal with that from the instrument. Various signal sources can be connected here by the use of suitable leads which are commercially available 3.5mm Mini Jack to RCA phono will enable you to connect to CD and Video players and the recording out of many small mixing desks 3.5 mm mono Mini Jack to ¼” Jack will enable you to connect into the fold back of most mixing desks. 3.5MM to phone Jack will enable you to connect to most phones and players for music.
Showtime is basically the overall Mute button the pedal lights up RED when unmuted and ready to play Note That the LINK socket on the rear panel remains Active whilst in mute mode. This output is at instrument level and can be used to drive a tuner for example .It is therefore possible to tune up without any signal to the PA or other connected equipment.
The OriginAL Pre-amplifier requires a Linear Isolated High quality Regulated power supply that can supply a current 300mA at a voltage of 15-18V DC Centre Pin NEGATIVE for the fitted 2.1mm connector socket. Since most Professional pedal board power supplies have outputs at 9V and 18V the pedal is marked at 18V. The pedal reduces the incoming power supply down to 12v suitable to drive the Valve and internal circuits, for the internal stabilisation to be fully effective the connected power supply should be between 15-18V DC as stated…