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Aguilar Tone Hammer
Overall Rating
Submitted: January 3rd, 2009
by Britton-C5wSD
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Sound Quality
Clean, warm and wonderful. Puts out plenty of DB. You could run a power amp with this. EQ is functional and not overbearing. Engaging the AGS adds overdrive on top of the EQ settings. Depending on hot hot the input signal is you can get varying degrees of grit (subtle to unuseable grind). With an active Warwick Thumb bass, any AGS setting above 9 o'clock becomes quite noticeable. No extra noise. Plenty of headroom. I have never needed to have the master volume above 12 o'clock. No unwanted distortion. I can't imagine a better stomp box style preamp/DI. The Tech 21 VT is very good and i will use it to get more old school thickness, but the Tone Hammer this is the best of its kind that I've tried.
Built like a tank. Solid state. I've only had it a few months, so I can't comment on long term reliability. It's an Aguilar, so you can draw your own conclusions. They have never let me down.
General Comments
Been playing 20 years. Have owned countless pieces of all types of bass equipment. However, the stompbox preamp/DI is one of my favorites and most useful. I've tried all the ones you've heard of (Radial Tonebone, Tech 21 - SansAmp Bass DI/SansAmp Para Driver DI/VT bass/SansAmp 3-Channel Programmable Bass Driver DI, EBS Microbass II) and the Tone Hammer is the best. Best clean tone, by far. At $200 bucks, you could have most of the above units, but the Aguilar is better than any of them.
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