I am bumping this post...
For all those who are TL;DR - just go to the pics and whats after. I am happily buzzed so I expect I will be long-winded. Makes for something to do while drinking morning coffee or __________.
It took a while to read through it but it was worth it. I actually finished reading a couple of days ago and it got my juices flowing. This is where I will beg your indulgence. I want to give a little background on myself so you have a reference point. This post is going to end differently that it begins and I think most of you, especially those who own a Sarno SMS Preamp, will want to read it.
That said...here goes!
I once owned a full Jerry rig, with the exception of a modded Dunlop Delay, I had everything else. The rack weight close to 300 lbs and you all know how much a JBL e120 weighs times 3... Well I sold it all back almost 30 years ago and have been chasing after it, figuratively speaking, ever since.
At the turn of the century (I've always wanted to say that ), I started down the path of home recording vs. gigging and tried/bought every 'decent' software platform for git out there (Ik Amplitube, Bias FX, Kuassa (best available Jerry wah ability but only via Windows...eck); After about 10 years I got bored and decided to come out of my cave to play music again. Trying to find a AB763 Twin without taking out a 2nd mortgage wasn't going to happen, nor did I have roadies around anymore to do the heavy lifting...
Enter modelers. I agonized over the Fractal vs. Kemper conondrum. But the Fractal won out due to it's onboard effects and deep diving ability (I just love rabbit holes ). My biggest problem was that I am not a programmer and had no idea what minute tweaks on the myriad of parameters were necessary to achieve Jerry's Preamp sound. The fractal forums were not much help as most FAS users are NOT deadheads lol, but I did get some excellent info from Vic/PlayingDead on how to set up the Mutron; best advice EVER! His reverb setting on the AX8 is phenomenal.
I just couldn't find a Jerry setting i really liked. The SF Twin gets as close as I could but has a slight lack of the tight lower end. But everything else sounded so excellent, I decided to do something most people will think is crazy.
I own a Sarno JG-1 SMS. Best investment I have ever made, musically. Just a freaken stellar built piece of gear. It IS Jerry. Period. I think you all see where this is going...Well if I can't make a copy of Jerry's preamp, I'll just have to USE the real one:
It actually weighs less than I thought it would. The Pedalboard is made by a guy on ETSY (Chumleys Pedalboards). It was the only one I could find that would house my SMS.
It sounds greats and gives me all the effects control I need. I run the front end effects through the OBEL (Hubbub) then take the return through the preamp and back to the AX8 so I can use the delay (i prefer it behind the preamp), modulations and reverb, then out to the FOH and powered speaker (Headrush for now) as monitor.
Now to the MEAT of this post. I figure this will work for rehearsals and some small gigs but I don't want to take my SMS out 'on the road' without it racked properly. So I started to look for an alternative and that's when I found this post.
It is almost impossible to get a Shift Line - there are 3 available as of this morning on Reverb. One is in Scotland; one in Sweden and one in Italy. They are going for over $600usd not including VAT/shipping.
There are 4 Blackbirds on Reverb (two at BigCityMusic in So Cal) and one on eBay this morning as well going for $469.
The Kingsley...forget about it. Lots of Minstrels and Jesters and w/e but no Maidens.
WARNING***WARNING***WARNING*** --- Here comes the good part.
I reached out to Brad Sarno. I must have been very eloquent because he responded the next day. I know how busy he is. Usual response time to emails is a few days to a week. I think he reads everything as soon as it comes in, but not everything is a priority.
In a nut shell I asked what it would take to stuff a JG SMS rackmount preamp into a pedalboard pedal (no reverb) and how many 'pre-orders' I would need to get to make this attractive to him. I think Brad is stellar but he needs to make a profit or it is not worth the time and believe me it will take 6 months just for the R&D.
I am going to paraphrase and abridge the response, but essentially he said HE IS ALREADY LOOKING INTO DOING THIS and that my email about it got his juices really flowing. Enough that he semi detailed out what could done to reduce the footprint (like remove the reverb, for one). Bear in mind that size wise we are probably looking at Strymon or the new IK X-Gear size vs. a Boss single pedal size, but I've seen some of your boards, so I know it will fit
I know that several of you have SMS preamps. Others have FYD (also excellent). I also know that if either one came in a footpedal version, this thread wouldn't even be here.. Can you imagine having a SMS preamp FOOTPEDAL on your board???? I run my SMS thru a Carvin Mach 100 when I want to play at home via headphones or thru a 1x12 Gauss speaker I have laying around...thing weight a ton...
There are several real challenges to do this they way he wants so as not to compromise the actual sound, but he thinks it is doable and has put it as one of only a couple of new projects to be fleshed out. The preamp seemed to be in the lead.
He asked me to check back with him after the end of winter as his current production timeline extends to that time, but he expressed a real desire and enthusiasm towards this project. I know that for some this is a 'long time' but the other 3 candidates above, which, IMHO, are shadows of the SMS or FYD, are also not available in any real production sense and once they are, it's waiting list. Alghouth I think the Shift Line is the best of the 3, like Jon, I am not going to pay duites / VAT plus shipping on a waiting list. Not to mention that the relationship with Russia isn't exactly roses...
Bear in mind this is not a guarantee at this time, but I think it will come to fruition. If you think you would be interested in such a pedal and in all honestly I would have to think the price point to be around $600usd, please shoot me a PM - I don't want to inundate this post.
I can give no other details until Brad gives me authorization to do so, but I look forward to updated information next Spring.
"Once in a while you can get shown the light, in the strangest of places, if you look at it right"