When Joel Korte of Chase Bliss Audio touched down in Portland, Oregon and began peppering his Instagram feed with pictures of him noshing with Chris Benson of Benson amps, there was much speculation to be had.
That speculation manifested at 2019’s NAMM show with the Preamp MKII, a slider-equipped brushed aluminum number that ended up winning Best in Show at that event. The face of the Preamp MKII Automatone is adorned with several aluminum sliders, which change depending on the selected preset. Unlike other pedals, the Preamp MKII doesn’t just change the settings while the knobs stay static; each one moves to the selected location in accordance with the activated preset. While the unit has yet to materialize in the wild, you can bet it will start popping up sooner than later.
This fully-automated gain device is capable of dishing up some seriously diverse dirt with a twist.
The demo for the Preamp MKII Automatone sees the sliders automatically moving around to accommodate a preset, and instantaneously switching the profile of the box. Several more pushbuttons on the front activate a number of features and extras.
A single-digit dot-matrix display seems to imply up to nine presets, giving you complete control over your dirt at every turn. This one is a can’t-miss here at NAMM 2019. – Nicholas Kula
Joel came to our booth in person to show us what it does, check it out.