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Sound Quality

Currently using it with a PRS custom 24, customized Ibanez S540 (20 years old now!). For power (and backup preamp), I use a Lexicon Signature 284 (3W x 2). Avatar 2 x 12 cab w/ Hellatones. By the way, if you come across one of these Lexicons for less than $500, buy it immediately. I also use a TC G-Major for additional effects. The setup sounds amazingly large, and doesn't hurt my aging back.... For it's time, this box was WAY ahead of the curve. Brilliant conceptually. It does have some noise in the high-gain modes, but it can can be tamed with good choices for tubes (Tung-Sol ECC803S) and a mod provided at adadepot.com, which does help considerably. There is also a noise gate, defined PER PATCH, that is pretty good. I also have a Rocktron Hush IICX... The effects are: 1) Chorus. Very good. Analog. Thick. 2) Cab simulator. Very good. Beats the hell out of going without it. 3) Tremelo. Don't use it very much, but seems to do it's job. 4) Wah. Surprisingly good. I'm not a wah snob, so I can't say it's better than this or that, but seems to be regarded well among those who are.


The unit has not failed me yet (or the previous owner). Of course, ADA is long dead, so operate at your own risk. Using anything without *some kind* of a backup is a bad move, regardless.

General Comments

I've been playing for about 25 years, though no longer professionally. WhenI do play, I play mostly rock. There is some occaisional country, blues, R&B thrown in. This preamp is not my only option (or choice), but has an impressive feature set for a piece it's age and cost. Any option that is it's equal or better is much more money. I have been a long-time Mesa user, and had a Triaxis a while back, which was a better preamp, with 5x the price tag. But it didn't have a gate, chorus, wah, or tremelo, either. By the way, the recording outs on the ADA are better, too.


Since I don't generate income from playing anymore, I have a hard time justifying expensive equipment costs. My purchases are dictated mostly by value - something good (or great) for as little as possible. The ADA fits that value model pretty well. The tone isn't for everyone. If metal is your thing, this will disappoint. If you like anything from Stones to to ZZ to AC/DC to hair metal, this will get the job done - in one rack space.


I would probably replace it with another if lost. The price is right, and it gets good tone.

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