We Love the Grace Design ALiX Acoustic Instrument Preamp

We Love the Grace Design ALiX Acoustic Instrument Preamp

By Front End Audio on Feb 2nd 2024

We Love the Grace Design ALiX Acoustic Instrument Preamp

We Love the Grace Design ALiX Acoustic Instrument Preamp! The Grace Design ALiX Acoustic Instrument Preamp (Black), also available in Silver, is a very cool compact instrument preamp designed for acoustic guitars. It's got a lot of solid (and very much needed) features, that makes it extremely usable and user-friendly for live performances. The EQ is accurate and clean. You will get zero artifacts from it. It simply lets you sweeten the sound of your instrument to the proper presentation. The Gain and Boost can be used together to drive the unit into some crunchy overdrive. While you may not want distortion on an acoustic, a little grit can sometimes be a perfect thing. Heck the Rolling Stones use to purposely clip the mic preamps in the studio (including on clean guitars and acoustics). But to simply use the ALiX as an acoustic preamp for the stage, is limiting what this cool pedal can do.

Grace Design ALiX

Obviously being a clean, open, and reliable contour shaper for acoustics on the stage, that also means you can use it in the studio for the same thing. Further with the ability to switch the output level between line and mic, you can run the output of the ALiX to your favorite mic pre to get even more tone. Whether that be something like a Grace M101, or something with a completely different tone, like the Phoenix Ascent. But don't just think the ALiX can only be used with acoustics, because you'll be surprised at how great it sounds on electric guitar. Mind you, I still believe in using amps. Miking a great sounding tube amp really often makes guitars sound their best. This is a place that the ALiX becomes even more versatile.

As mentioned, you can get a little crunch from the ALiX, so if you wanted to add a little dirt (or pre-dirt) to an electric guitar, you can. You can also keep the ALiX clean, and get some great clear clean tones from your guitar. With the “amp out” on the ALiX, this allows you to record a DI'ed track and a miked amp/cab at the same time. You can also once again, set the AliX output to mic level and run your guitar thru a mic pre to add tone/character to the DI'ed guitar. Have you ever heard what a Chandler Limited Germanium Preamp sounds like driven into distortion? It's awesome. Get a little pre-dirt from the ALiX and push that into a Germanium that is purposely driven into distortion, while recording a more heavy driven miked amp at the same time........ great sounding and easy stacked guitar tracks right there. Of course you can accomplish the same thing for clean guitars. Run the DI output to a nice tube preamp, like the Hendyamps Rembrandt Tube Preamp. Then run the amp out to a Marshall combo or half stack and mic that up to stack clean guitars, so simply a great stereo guitar recording.

All of these ideas can be used with acoustic guitars or electric guitars, while one the stage or in the studio. So never fear getting creative and seeing how far you can push a piece of gear. The good gear (like the Grace Design AliX) will work like a champ, and surprise you at what you can accomplish. The Grace Design ALiX Acoustic Preamps are available for purchase at Front End Audio! If you have any questions about it or any of Grace Design's other gear, give us a call! We're here to help.

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