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Radial Engineering Tonebone PZ-Pre Acoustic Direct Box Preamp  

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The Tonebone PZ-Pre Acoustic DI Box Preamp is equipped with piezo acoustic input signal boosters to allow both add-on instrument pickups and built-in, integral active preamps to be combined for a more... Click To Read More About This Product


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The Tonebone PZ-Pre Acoustic DI Box Preamp is equipped with piezo acoustic input signal boosters to allow both add-on instrument pickups and built-in, integral active preamps to be combined for a more natural rendering. It is compact yet full featured, designed for both studio and live performance.

The Tonebone PZ-Pre instrument preamp begins with two inputs for two instruments, which can be toggled using the toggle footswitch. If you want to use two pickups on a single guitar, a unique Mix function is provided that converts the two channels from "either-or" to both. There are separate level controls for each input.

The tone shaping on the PZ-Pre preamplifier is simple yet extremely musical. It features powerful bass and high controls with a semi-parametric mid. This is supported with a feedback eliminating notch filter with variable frequency sweep control and choice of normal and extra deep notch filtering. To help eliminate troublesome resonance, a dual slope low cut (high pass filter) is also provided. An internal polarity reverse can also be engaged to help eliminate run-away feedback.

To augment on-stage performance, the PZ-Pre Direct Box Preamp is equipped with a combination power booster and effects loop bus. This allows you to introduce an effect such as a chorus, or boost the signal for soloing with a simple foot stomp. A separate tuner out has also been provided along with a mute footswitch for on-the-fly tuning.

To facilitate all kinds of monitoring, the Radial PZ-Pre offers the most comprehensive output array ever: A standard instrument amp output sends the instrument signal to your personal amplifier. A pre-EQ balanced lo-Z balanced output is used to route the flat, pre-equalized signal the signal to the front of house mix position, while a second XLR out is post-EQ for onstage monitoring and in-ear systems so that the musician can get the sound he wants. XLR outputs are equipped with polarity reverse and ground lift.

Like all Radial products, the PZ-Pre features heavy-duty 14-gauge construction and is supported with a 3-year transferable warranty. Comes equipped with an external 15VDC power supply.

  • Piezo acoustic input signal boosters
  • Designed for studio and live performance
  • Unique Mix function
  • 1 -gauge construction
  • External 15VDC power supply
    Input impedance regular: 6.8 kOhm
    Input impedance piezo: 10 MOhm
    PZB boost level: 10dB
    Low cut roll-off pos-1: 75Hz
    Low cut roll-off pos-2: 220Hz
    Notch frequency range: 56Hz to 330Hz
    Notch Q setting-1: 8dB
    Notch Q setting-2: 15dB
    Low frequency type and spec: Shelving type +/- 12dB @ 75Hz corner freq
    Mid frequency range, type and spec: Parametric +/- 12dB 82Hz to 5.6Khz
    High frequency type and spec: Shelving type +/- 12dB @ 7.5Khz corner freq
    Boost level: 12dB
    Effects send & receive : -10dB, Send 1 kOhm, Return 15 kOhm
    Polarity Switch: 180 degrees (absolute phase reversal)
    Input-1: 1/4" unbalanced
    Input-2: 1/4" unbalanced
    Insert send & receive: Send 1 kOhm, Return 15 kOhm
    Output instrument: Hi-Z, coaxial, 1 kOhm
    Output Tuner: Hi-Z, coaxial 6.8 kOhm
    Pre-EQ: XLR male balanced mic level 600 ohms
    Post-EQ: XLR male balanced mic level 600 ohms
    Dimensions: 8" x 4-1/4" x 1-3/8" (203x108x35mm)
90 day warranty on footswitch and tubes. One year warranty on all other products.

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  • No lemon guarantee
  • Free transfer of coverage to a new owner
  • Repair costs covered for up to three years from date of purchase
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  • Customer Reviews

Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
Radial EngineeringTonebone PZ-Pre Acoustic Direct Box Preamp

(based on 4 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

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Reviewed by 4 customers

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Noisy piece of garbage.

By otter

from on the road

About Me Professional Musician


  • Easy To Use
  • Portable


  • Poor Sound Quality

Best Uses

  • Performances
  • Recording Studio

Comments about Radial Engineering Tonebone PZ-Pre Acoustic Direct Box Preamp:

I got the ToneBone because i needed something to replace my Dtar DI box and a friend recommended it. The Dtar was problematic because depending on the electricity at a venue or studio it would add a horrible noise in the high end. When it worked great it was clean and perfect. But I couldn't accept that it was so unreliable when playing nice theaters and festivals.
So I bought the tonebone. It colors the sound (not nicely) and is SUPER NOISY. I use K & K 2 way pickups that sound amazing in my acoustic guitars. The Dtar did not color the sound at all, but running thru the tonebone is like pushing the suck button. In the studio i have to disconnect it and I can not use it on stage because it sounds horrible. I have tried to make adjustments with other engineers and the consensus is, ths piece of gear is just noisy. YUCK.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


Technology Is A Wonderful Thing

By Phil Clement

from Toronto, Ontario Canada

Comments about Radial Engineering Tonebone PZ-Pre Acoustic Direct Box Preamp:

Been playing for almost 40 years and it's interesting to reflect on all of my gear changes over the years. Teenage years and into my 20's - full stack Marshall and Les Paul. Went to a half stack and a bazillion pedals in my 30's. Changed to combo amps and modelling amps in my 40's. I can now basically sell the entire works of it because it can all be replaced with the Yamaha THR-10 and the Tonebone PZ-Pre. Remarkable engineering.

(7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)


Radial's PZ-Pre

By Wayne Scott Farley

from Easton, PA

Comments about Radial Engineering Tonebone PZ-Pre Acoustic Direct Box Preamp:

I am a professional player with over forty years playing/touring experience. It is a rarity to find such a fine unit as the Radial Tonebone PZ-Pre Preamp. It is built like a tank, has a very useful layout, and excels both in sound quality and it's superbly quiet electronic design. Everything sounds great through it, not just acoustics, mandolins, or basses. But Tele's, Strats, Gretches, the works...even through guitar amps. Fantastic addition to the sound of any instrument which is (normally) plugged straight-in to a PA. I am really glad to have purchased this item, as it solved problems that were "worked around" at best for many years. Cheers Radial!!!

(12 of 12 customers found this review helpful)


Very nice front end for my acoustic guitar

By Steve

from Chicago, IL

Comments about Radial Engineering Tonebone PZ-Pre Acoustic Direct Box Preamp:

I've used a Boss AD5 for years, but recently thought it was time to simplify and upgrade my acoustic rig. The PZ-Pre is the best-sounding box I've ever heard. Top-level signal path with excellent sound-shaping options. I love the on-board mute and looping chain as well as all of the routing options. It delivers a strong, pristine signal straight into the PA as well as through my Loudbox. My Taylor and Larrivee guitars sound killer. My only wish is that the mute switch was a couple inches lower on the left side. I have to be careful not to hit the Boost and Bass buttons above it when stomping. That aside, serious acoustic players should take a serious look at this this box.

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