Two Notes Audio Engineering Le Lead
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Le Lead, Guitar amplification from Two Notes Audio Engineering in the Le Preamp series.

gatman 01/31/2016

Two Notes Audio Engineering Le Lead : gatman's user review

"A little red bombshell"
5

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Value For Money : Excellent Audience: Anyone
I'd been after a preamp to complement my torpedo cab for a while.

I've used several models in the past: H&k, AMT ss11,Blackstar, Fredamp 800 (not enough gain for my taste) .
While clean sounds were most often acceptable, no way to get a REAL high gain.

Now, I've found what I was after: a compact preamp with not two but 4 channels!

Channel A : a very good cleansound, it reacts well to pedals (both before and after).
Channel B : A lot of demos insist on its high gain, and it is great indeed. The tube does a lot to shape the outcoming sound, it's the best I've ever had. Yet, in low gain, it's also VERY good. It's not a shredders-only preamp, a lot of sounds can be achieved with it, espacially using the...

Fusion mode : This is where it's getting extraordinary. You can get the sound of both channels, either cascaded or in parallel with a mix setting. This allows to get an overdriven sound based on a clean one, allowing each note to sound clear and detached.
You'd almost regret the impossibility to make presets, like with a multi-effect.

With the output going straight into my torpedo CAB, I get an incredibly wide array of sounds, particularily with channel B's equalizer which allows to dine tune the mids.

Connectors : very complete with effect loop, heacphone out, midi, direct out with speaker emulator... How did they manage to get all that fit into it? The box looks sturdy and professional.

Sole little cons: the direct out with emulated speaker. It can do the job if needed, but it's light years away from the sound quality you'll get out of a CAB or real amp.
Especially since the Wos speaker emulation software is included.

Expected for a long while, this French-designed product is the perfect tool for any guitarist wishing for a light and high-performance tube preamp. In a short time, you get a great sound and can spend time to refine it and mix with the Fusion mode.
I haven't tried the rest of the Two Notes series but this one suits me really perfectly.