The folks over at Premier Guitar Magazine recently got their hands on a PZ-Pro and its fair to say they were impressed. Radial’s flagship Acoustic Preamp gained their prestigious ‘Premier Gear’ Award, an accolade that only goes to the most indispensable gear.
Read on or click here to see exactly what they had to say.
Radial’s Powerful Updated Acoustic Preamp-Plus
By Jason Shadwick
Radial’s latest iteration of their PZ-Pro is a dynamite workhorse that can make your acoustic instruments sound better and your rig more streamlined. In simple terms, it’s a 2-channel preamp with a built-in effects loop, switchable boost, and independent EQ controls that could easily function as a grab-and-go setup or the centerpiece of an expansive pedalboard. Radial’s reputation for rock-solid construction and road-worthy gear is well known, and the PZ-Pro carries that torch admirably. When you pick it up, it just feels like it can handle life on the road, and at $499 it should.
I plugged in my Cordoba Acero and fed it to a Fishman SA330 PA system. The PZ-Pro’s preamps are top notch and gave me plenty of clarity and headroom for nearly any amplified situation. The real magic was the PZ-Pro’s versatility. Immediately, I thought of how using an external mic in channel 2 (bonus: it has phantom power!) along with a direct line could give FOH plenty of sonic material to work with. And if you’re a utility player who needs to cover mando, acoustic, banjo, dobro, or any combination thereof, setting up individual EQ levels and roping in a few external stomps is a breeze. Plus, the added blend knob ensures that your external effects won’t overpower your fundamental tone. That’s an often-requested feature for acoustic pickers. One minor quibble is I wish each channel had its own XLR output and the pre/post EQ was a switchable feature.
Kudos to Radial for not overloading a unit like this with flashy, unnecessary bells and whistles and focusing more on real-world applications. The PZ-Pro is exactly that: a pro-level tool that puts more weight and thought behind the essential elements of acoustic amplification.
Test Gear: Cordoba Acero & Fishman SA330