« Sick!!! »Published on 06/27/11 at 10:25
This preamp has the exact same features as the blue face model that we have seen frequently in the States. The black model is harder to come by but the only difference isn't tone but just cosmetics.
These units were first introduced in the early 90's and artists such as Alice in Chains and Megadeth. Jerry Cantrell from Alice in Chains has used this preamp since the first album. Many other artists have come over to the Fish and many more came back when they reissues them not too long ago.
This is a fantastic unit that has a ton of versatility in tonal operations. You can go from blues rock all the way up to metal tones. There isn't much you can't do with the Fish as the possibilities are really endless.
4 Channel all tube design with master volume and presence controls (back panel)
Eight 12AX7 preamp tubes.
Blue Anodized Front with white Chicken head knobs
One front and one rear input, parallel dual outputs on back.
Country : Volume, Treble, Middle and Bass controls, 3-position bright switch
Sparkling clean sound for all musical styles.
Shark: Balls (Gain), Treble, Bass and Volume controls , 3-position bright switch
Lower gain very open sounding vox meets fender.
Strato: Gain, Volume, shared Treble, Middle and Bass controls with Brown channel
High gain aggressive, tight
Brown: Gain, Volume, shared Treble, Middle and Bass controls with Strato channel
Sound wise you can take a guess what Brown means, fat high gain.
This thing is full of preamps tubes. Here is the layout.
V1: 1st stage for Clean channel, 12ax7
V2: 1st stage for Strato channel, 12ax7
V3: 1st and 2nd stage for Brown channel, 12ax7
V4: 2nd stage Strato, 3rd Stage Brown, 12ax7
V5: 3rd stage Strato, 4th Stage Brown, 12ax7
V6: 1st and 2nd stage Shark channel, 12ax7
V7: 3rd and 4th stage Shark, 12ax7
V8: Output, 12ax7
The control knobs are a little bit confusing and it will take some time getting used to the way they interact. If your used the the overlapping thing Bogner does with their faceplates then you won't have any problems.
The sounds you get from this unit are very warm and thick. It you need an amp that has juicy thick gainy tone than this is a good unit for you. The tone from the unit is distinctly a Bogner tone. It has brown sound to it but is really stands out uniquely to the sound Bogner is known for.
Whether you play a Strat or a Les Paul or humbucker style guitar you will have no problem pulling off great tones from this unit. My personal favorite is the brown setting. I like the high gain and tone that it has.
I wouldn't put this amp at the top of the Bogner heap, but it is a cool unit. I would say the best Bogner amp is the 20th Ann. XTC and the next been the new Twin Jets. He has new Twin Jet coming out this year hopefully that is quite the best Bogner amp I have ever heard.
These units generally float around the $2500 and really hold their value quite well. I would recommend this amp to anyone who needs a solid preamp and knows the Bogner tone. It is quite expensive for just a preamp, but they do sound fantastic.