Has anyone tried the Carvin X1 or Vai Preamp Pedals? Thoughts?
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Thread: Has anyone tried the Carvin X1 or Vai Preamp Pedals? Thoughts?

  1. #1


    Join Date: May 2019
    Location: Montana, USA
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    Has anyone tried the Carvin X1 or Vai Preamp Pedals? Thoughts?

    I was a fan of the Carvin X100b amps and have owned two in the past. I need another 50-100w amp like I need a hole in the head, but the Carvin x1 pedal might fill a niche in my gear. It supposed to be the preamp section of an x100b in pedal form, with a few goodies like speaker emulated out and headphones. I could use it as a distortion pedal, a preamp run into the return of an FX loop on another amp, or most importantly for me, for a late night headphone amp and a recording direct-to-interface. I like the idea. Anyone tried it in person - or its brother the Vai pedal?

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  3. #2


    Join Date: Sep 2008
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    All the clips I've heard of the Vai pedal sounded like fucking trash.
    Argbadh - RHLC©

  4. #3


    Join Date: May 2019
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    Quote Originally Posted by Randy View Post
    All the clips I've heard of the Vai pedal sounded like fucking trash.
    I haven't listened to it. I was more interested in the X1, which sounds pretty good in the clips I've heard. I just asked about the Vai because I think they're similar products in conception. But that's too bad.

    I'm hoping Carvin can get up and running with a full line of amps and such again. It seemed to me they made good stuff at a fair price. They probably could have marketed better, but I don't know...

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  6. #4


    Join Date: Oct 2008
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    I had an X100b back in college, and I mostly remember not being able to get as much gain as I wanted out of it. That, and the clean channel still being really clean no matter how loud I cranked it.

    Not sure how that translates into pedal form...

  7. #5


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    Same here, my X100-B would knock down a building before you got killer gain out of it. Maybe just find a Jemini pedal.
    "Oh, those jazz guys are just making that stuff up!" - Homer J. Simpson

  8. #6


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    Every Carvin I've tried has this fuzzy, fizzy, undefined sound to it that I'm not a fan of.

    There's much better options out there in terms of preamp pedals.

  9. #7


    Join Date: Oct 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jazzhands View Post
    Every Carvin I've tried has this fuzzy, fizzy, undefined sound to it that I'm not a fan of.
    I agree in terms of other Carvins I tried, but that wasn't my X100b at all. It sounded great, but it maxed out at about Allman Brothers gain levels, when I was looking for a Sabbath-ish sound. I ended up putting a Rat in front of it--which was fine but doesn't suggest anything you'd want in a preamp pedal!

  10. #8


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    X100B is a fantastic amp, and I loved the Legacy 1. The preamp pedal version just sounds like hot garbage.

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