BigShot PB1 DEVELOPMENT

After the successful launch of the Tonebone Switchbone, scores of guitarists told us how much they liked the power booster inside. They particularly liked the fact that it did not color their tone and the buffering helped quiet down their pedalboard and guitar amp setup.

The Switchbone and the Radial BigShot PB1 both employ the same class-A buffering amplifier that is used in the Radial JD7 Injector. The JD7 is a guitar distro that lets you run as many as seven guitar amplifiers at the same time and is used by many of the world's most discerning guitarists including Carlos Santana, John Petrucci, Steve Vai, Neil Schon, John Mayer, Steve Lukather, Metallica, AC/DC and a host of others. What few realize is that building a buffer or signal amplifier may seem relatively easy... however building one that works well enough to engage these top artists is a different matter...

And this is the magic that the BigShot PB1 brings to you. The PB1 is in fact a pared down version of the Switchbone. So... what makes the PB1 so cool?

  • Class-A circuit Anyone that has read about audio circuit designs knows that class-A circuits are preferred over the more efficient class-B counterparts. Class-A circuits amplify the full wave at one time, which eliminates zero-cross distortion but sounds better. The PB1 is of course class-A.
  • Discrete electronics The usual method of building a preamp or buffer is to use chips or integrated circuits. These can have hundreds of transistors inside them that work together to increase the gain. The down side is that you then need to apply huge amounts of negative feedback to keep everything in check. Because the PB1 employs individual transistors, we do not apply unnecessary negative feedback which reduces phase anomalies.
  • Drag Control For years, guitarists have complained that they hate the sound of buffers. While developing the Radial JD7, we discovered you could improve the tone and feel of the buffer by properly loading the pickup. Drag control was invented for this purpose and is built into the PB1.
  • 9 volt operation The biggest complaint we get with the Tonebone series is the 15V operation and non-standard power supply. The PB1 was specifically designed to address the problem and employs a standard Boss®-style 9V supply. This makes it easy to incorporate into a pedalboard.
  • Compact design We also reduced the size of the PB1 so that it would take up less real-estate on the pedalboard. It is important to note that smaller buffers can be made smaller because they do not employ discrete parts. Bigger – in this case – is better!

The BigShot PB1 is likely the best sounding guitar signal buffer made today.