DB7, DB9, SA9, SA9+ SA9+ REC
Mercy Street recording artist, session guitarist, producer and engineer BC Marshall, whose credits include the Academy Awards, the CMA awards, alongside his work with artists like: Christina Aguilera, Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, Adrian Belew, King Crimson, and many others, plays and records with Schroeder Amps exclusively since 2009! His first Schroeder was an early red box Db7. Marshall now owns the first SA9+. Marshall says of the new amp:
"I thought that the DB7 was my end all, my forever amp! But since Tim created the SA9+... well, that's all she wrote folks! I'm in love! I have never owned an amplifier that reacted the way Tim's amps do. And the SA9+ has everything that I loved about the 7, but something more. Notes bloom like I just never thought possible, whatever you feed it, it gives back in spades! Every guitar I own loves this thing! Sometimes, I feed it the output of a Fractal Axe-Fx2 and the results are unbelievable! Seriously, there are not enough superlatives in the dictionary to describe it. I just know I'm never giving this one up!"
I am still discovering the awesomeness of your creation. You have created something much different from anything I have heard. Everything I hoped your amp would do it does and more. Best purchase I have ever made.
After playing through the SA9+ REC amp everyday for a month, I still cannot get over how awesome your amp sounds. Clean or dirty it produces an unbelievably beautiful sound.
Best wishes, Steve
Hi Tim. First off, the DB9+ is killer. I was trying to describe it to my assistant and couldn’t quite put it into words. It’s very clean but by no means sterile. Maybe it’s hyper-transparent and so the guitar is allowed to speak more dynamically than with typical amps? You’d know better than I what is happening but bravo on a great design! I’m very happy and anxious to put it to the test.
Eric Lambert, Creative Director
Hey Tim, The DB9 sounds ridiculously good. I have had a chance to play it in a bunch of different settings and it just keeps on giving. My humble review: Single note playing is really harmonically rich and supportive. Even without accompaniment, single note lead lines really make an impact. The harmonics seem to rise up and support the note. Chords are beautiful. Pardon my poetry, but it's like looking into a really deep lake. Although it is perfectly clear, it appears infinitely deep. The chord harmonics keep singing and swirling long after I hit a chord. The DB9 has changed my playing style and my ear. I am much more conscious of the intensity and nuances of my picking because of the amp's incredible sensitivity. It's weird but I feel like I can hear more in my own playing and more in general regardless of what I am listening to. In my everyday life, I feel like I notice a lot more complexity on the high and low end of the sound spectrum. The DB9 has re-inspired my appreciation of the miracle of sound, and how beautiful it can be. Thanks again for designing and building such an incredible amp. Aside from the technology and build, which is as good as it gets, the amp is sooo soulful and sings with a voice all its own.
Thanks again, Alexis D.
My expectations for the DB9+ were sky high and they have easily been surpassed. This is the most amazing amp I've ever played!
The DB9+ arrived unscathed and in perfect working order. Wow!!!! Absolutely amazing!!!! I couldn't put my guitar down!!!! The tone is just so.........complex.......lush......regal!!!!! The tone controls work so beautifully, yielding stunning results no matter where I set them. The bright switch and the boost control sound phenomenal, and make the amp extremely versatile. Though I have a lot more experimenting to do, I'm already completely blown away. Thanks you so much for the ridiculously gorgeous amp! I couldn't be happier!!!!!!!!!
and after some time with the DB7:
I'm absolutely loving the amp!!!!!!! I've owned at least one amp from each of the companies listed below. There are a two or three amps that I really love, but if I could only have one, it would have to be the DB7.
Savage, Clark, Red Iron, Tube-Tone, Shadow, Star, Bad Cat, Vintage Sound, 3rd Power, Reeves, Reinhardt, BrownNote, Victoria, Quinn, RedPlate, Germino, JMI, Jackson Ampworks, ToneKing, Grammatico, Soldano, Matchless, Diezel, Morgan, Mesa Boogie, Carol-Ann, Snyder, Mojave, Louis Electric, Dr.Z, Marsh, Carr, Blankenship, Cornford, Bruno, Xits, Sommatone, Vox, Fuchs, 65 Amps, Laney, Kingsley, Roland
Thanks again for the truly special amp!!!!!!!!!
I finally had an hour or two to play with amp!
All I can say is Wow!
First impressions are tons of warmth, punch and harmonic content! The amp almost plays you! Demands that you play better..but rewards you like a race car!
It's everything I thought it would be and more! Immediate, out of the box perfection and chimey tone in every way!
Very intuitive controls..Love the 'Boost' micro-switch! Great frequency response throughout lows-mids-highs!
Really great range of 'loudness' for playing at home in the loft or bigger stages!
My Strat sounds best/fullest(abby wound pickups) the '61 Jazzmaster needs less 'prescence' then it sounds great.
Thanks for the 'one on one' service and for accommodating all my little requests( easy payment plan) and for such a beautiful amp that is EXACTLY me!
I am absolutely blown away by the amp. Clearly the best sounding amp I’ve owned. I played each of my instruments through it during a marathon session earlier this week and was blown away by amp’s clarity and tone and the way it enhanced my feel and picking attack. An amazing amp! Paired with a Raezers Edge 2 x 6 cabinet my jazz boxes sounded great! The amp elevated my Ribbecke 17” w/ floating pickup to a whole new level. A perfect match.
Often after I finish playing this amp, I think “Man this amp is un-believable!, I have tell Tim how great it is”.
Well today I am finally following through.
I can’t tell you how much I like this amp!, all my guitars sound better. I hear a guitar tone that I like and with a little futzing around I can copy it…. Almost every time!
Thanks again! -Pat S.
I love it!
At the volume I usually play, it's just like you said - can't tell the amp's even on. Overall, the sustain seems stronger, the notes bloom and articulate more, and the tone is more full and complex. You're a magic man, Tim!
Tim, the amp sounds glorious! I think I like it even more than the DB7. Didn't think that was possible. Really has a lot of chime. Handles the guitar volume knob beautifully. Thanks!
I just began to play with my new girl.
All I can say from my initial session is that frankly you have really hit something singularly unique with this amp. Over my 30 some years of playing, I have never played through an amplifier that feels like your amps do. I felt that way the second I played through my DB7 and now this amp raises the game to a whole new level.
I don't know what kind of voodoo you do when you dream this stuff up, but I am really glad you have it in you!
Both the Ramjet and DB7 are outstanding! My single coiled guitars have never sounded better. These amps make it much easier for me to roll the tone down on any guitar, something I like doing often.
So, here's a very quick summary of some of my takeaways from yesterday's visit...
First of all, about your amp. I've been playing & listening to amps for as long as you've been alive, so I can be pretty jaded to these things. However, the sense of the way your setup responds at the levels (both in terms of spl & input) we were using is just instantly effective at putting me at a place where I'm no longer engaging any critical judgements. Instead, I'm immediately engaged in playing the electric guitar, which is generally a very enjoyable activity for me.
Apologies for not replying sooner. Dozer #68 turned up the day before yesterday is perfect condition. I and a friend (who can actually play guitar ;) played it for a couple of hours the last 2 days, starting with bass, but guitar ended up being too much fun! Having checked the bias, I could get the outer pair just under 18mV with the inner pair at about 20 and 22mV. I tried it through my B15 reissue cab, a Bob Burt Weber Chicago Iron loaded cab and the Schroeder Sidecar all of which handled the power and tight deep low end well, though I didn't take the master beyond 3 o'clock. I'll have to try my Altec loaded VT-22 next ,but the Sidecar is likely to be my go to.
First thing I noted was how quiet the amp runs even with pre and master cranked.
Second is the headroom, incredible amount of tonal variation with picking intensity. This is indeed magic!
Third is how low the guitar's volume pot can go and still get smile inducing tones. I was mostly using a 70's Japanese Tele, but by reducing the vol pot could get Strat tones as well.
Fourthly the Eq is great, very malleable, and I like how there's no signal with everything counterclockwise.
Fifthly the clarity of chords is fantastic, I like to mess around with clean inharmonic voicings which you can get away with on an acoustic but I've yet to meet an amp that can reproduce them with only clean beating and not clouded in some distortion halo.
Sixthly, I've not heard another amp with such tight, immediate low end, which the sidecar translated beautifully.
Finally, the gain staging of the pre has such a wide useable range with cranked also being just right the right amount of break-up without sludge, and low gain with master up also great.
I'm sure I'll think of more points but this is a start. When I get some clients using it I'll pass on their comments.
I prefer where possible to track all in the one room together and never thought a 200W amp would work for that but I can see now it will be fine, and for overdubs I can crank it up and get the room compressing a bit as well.
The stock tubes you selected sound great, but I will get some NOS 12AX and an AT7 to try. I suspect it's not worth hunting for NOS KT88 quads as the benefit is outweighed by cost and risk.
All in all, a wonderful amp Tim, and very different and complimentary to the DB7, and every other amp in the studio.
Many thanks to you.
Cheers, Richard. Japan
more... (Reverb unit, Ramjet, Blister Agent, SAI speaker driver, repairs, refretting)
Hi Tim. I LOVE the Ramjet. I've just started to scratch the surface. At this point I'm mostly using it as a low watt amp hear. I turn it up and just love the syrup of the overdriven tone. I stick a 121 on the cab and it sounds magnificent and nasty.
The Reverb unit is killer. I haven't tried it live onstage yet but we've spent a lot of time together. Loving both the extreme and subtle settings. The treble boost/cut (3rd knob) is very useful and can make the most extreme settings musical. It's hard to find a setting that does not sound musical. Thank you for making such a sweet reverb, despite your dislike of reverbs.
The mid range dynamic in them is superb! Love em...thinking about swapping the drivers out in a combo amp of mine come March...
Jake Cinninger, Umphrey's McGee
After spending a lot of time with the Blister Agent pedal recently, I really appreciate what a tour de force it is. incredibly transparent boost and overdrive - does not change the tone of the guitar. and yet the bass notes are smooth and not "farty" at all the way so many OD pedals are. I now understand what the sag filter does, and I will never turn it off - it just adds to the naturalness of this effect, the emulation of an overdriven amp with great components. As a boost (with distortion very low), it seems to subtly enhance harmonics, and of course that feature is in play when you add dirt as well. The frequency filter switch is just an extremely cool bonus. Finally - and this is something you need to get more credit for - the pedal is build like a tank. I can't imagine it's possible to damage this in regular gigging unless if falls out of an airplane, and even then I give it 50/50 odds of survival.
Hey Tim- I got my Blister Agent today and after just a quick lap around the track with it..... I love it.
I can shape some great tones and colors with the pedal. The distortion is beautiful and musical, it maintains the sound and touch of the original signal. Sag settings are cool and the frequency control reminds me of using a wah pedal to get some 70s tones a la Ronson.
Looking forward to playing with it. Thanks!
Tim, Hey thanks, I finally got to put the Blister Agent through my gauntlet of guitars and amps (including my DB7). I had so much fun and pure tonal frolic that the neighbors a quarter mile away finally texted to request I knock it off for the night at around 1am. Using the SAG toggle in the transient position and the Q at about 11 o'clock I discovered the most amazing ghost like notes that hovered harmonically in an almost frightening chorus when playing a P90 gold top. I could go on but would rather just thank you for keeping me on the list and applaud you for another seemingly exquisite machine. (Darn it, I thought that I was done with distortion boxes)
Thanks again Tim,
The Blister Agent arrived this past Wednesday and I've since had a couple hours to sit down with it. I just wanted to say that this is easily the best distortion I've come across in over twenty years of playing. Usually with any kind of dirt pedal, I dial it in to the one sound that I think it does well and then that's that, but this thing sounds phenomenal in every setting, across the entire sweep of the knobs. I can actually hear my fingers and my guitar through it, not just the distortion -- it's exactly the mix of clear and creamy that I've always coveted and have rarely been able to find (and when I have, it has always been with both an overdrive and a distortion pedal in series).
You know what you're doing, and you've got far more esteemed clients than myself to tell you so, but this pedal is so good that I felt morally obligated to add my voice to the choir.
Thanks once again, and keep up the fine work!
So I've been meaning to write you this note for a while. Now that I've had my guitar back for weeks I can confidently say that it is still as amazing as I thought it was after I first got it back.
Remember when I told you that I laughed hysterically for a good minute the first time I flipped the blower switch and heard those wicked harmonics and sustain? I still get that giddy every time I hit that switch. I actually play slower so I can hear what happens when I properly articulate a note.
I have other guitars that are prettier and were more expensive. I haven't touched them since you sent me back my G&L.
Thanks again for my new guitar.
Thank you so much for taking care of my beer-battered AC30 last weekend. You're a real life-saver! I was totally lost in Chicago, on the road with a busted amp...stoked I found Schroeder! Everyone I met there (in person or on phone) was a complete professional...friendly and knowledgeable - something you don't get too much of in this business. If you're ever around DC/Baltimore, hit me up. I'll be sure to refer any Chicago repair needs I hear of your way. And the next time we're up there, I'll be making time to try out one of those DB7's...they look amazing!
Earl C. (guitars - Vinny Vegas)
I'm remiss in telling you how brilliant the work is that you performed on my instruments. I've owned the PBass - in one incarnation or another - since around 1980, and it has never been this inspiring and fun to play. And I never knew my Larivee parlor guitar was capable of producing such clear sounds. It plays much better of course, but now the low-end from that little body is kindof staggering. I wish I had had the K&K installed years ago; I can't get over how true it sounds.
I won't hesitate to send folks your way.
Best, and many thanks -
Fantastic! The string dynamics responded as you stated. The attack, response, and vibrato trails are excellent, a couple effects also respond exceptionally, Wow, even more fun to play. Thanks. Carr Mercury Mod. Brian O.
The cable is interesting. I did go into it with my ears, not my head, and there was an undeniable difference. More high end transparency and a tighter low end with the upgraded cable. The sound is generally more prominent and established. In comparison, the original cable - a decent cable - felt slightly plastic. I did not expect that, but I’ll take it. I had four of the guys here listen (we recorded before and after samples, then A/B'd) and they all had the same reaction.
Finished a recording session over the weekend using my re-fretted Northwood D80C and I just wanted to thank you and let you know the guitar sounds phenomenal! Captured some truly sweet harmonics to tape which occurred just from the player strumming the guitar. I've never heard anything like it before.... Outstanding!! I searched around quite a bit before deciding to bring the guitar to your shop and I'm VERY happy with the results.
Have great New Year!!
-Bob W./Shining Star Studio
I'm sure you hear this all the time, but I have travelled far and wide, played many, many guitars and amps, and been to a wide range of techs, guitar shops, blah blah. Point being: I am very glad to have found your shop. The refrets you've done for me have changed the way I feel about getting an instrument worked on. Sincerely, thank you.
The refret made all the difference in the world. Happy customer!
I wanted to write to express my gratitude to all of you for the incredible work you’ve done on my guitars! ...the wiring job is the cleanest I’ve ever seen...
...You’ve put my fears to rest!! The new frets are incredible, the bone nut was perfectly made, the TonePros bridge lends itself to the intonation I never thought possible with this guitar, and the action is so perfect it’s scary!! You’ve exceeded my expectations in every possible way and I can’t thank you enough for the amazing work that you’ve done. I’ve had mixed results with several guitar repair shops over the years, but I’ve finally found the skilled professionals that I was looking for. On top of the amazing job you’ve done with my instruments, you were all incredibly pleasant to work with and you answered all my questions. I can’t thank you enough and I’ll see you soon with my next project!!! Cheers,
I been at this thing called playing music for over 30 yrs having played Jazz, Blues. Tim and crew not only build my amps, but keep my guitars (Hamer Hollow Artist, Tom Anderson Hollow Classic, Wechter Pathmaker Acoustic) with the utmost care and fast turn-around service. It ain't cheap but I dare you to ever regret buying it as soon as you start to play... Nuff said -Robert V.
I couldn't be happier. Clark did a great job with the shielding and replacing some of the electronics. And the setup is perfect! ...You guys do a great job. Not just the quality either, you really treat your customers well.
I just got back from rehearsal with the Squire 51 that you worked your magic on. It sounded incredible, like the greatest tele/strat that I ever played. The action, resonance, and intonation was perfect. You really did a fantastic job on the conversion!!!!!!!! Thank you thank you.
This former "Milk-Dud" of an amp has now been transformed by your shop, into a luscious confection of astounding subtlety and nuance. Needless to say, all the options you suggested were in fact the very thing this amp needed.... While playing every guitar within reach through this amp, I found a sweetness and complexity I did not believe possible from a mass produced box like this.... As you promised, the tone and sonic range of this amp are positively inspirational. Those are the magic words any musician wants to say when picking up their instrument. "Life, might be like a box of chocolates", but this amp as customized by Schroeder Guitar, is a consistent guarantee of sweet, satisfying sounds anytime you open it up. Thanks, I cannot wait to hear the AC30 when it's finished.
My tone could not be any better... with you guys working on my guitars and equipment... 100% Schroeder Cables on my pedal-board... just, wow. -Marcus R.
Good morning to the simply amazing crew at Schroeder,
Over the past couple of months I have had the sincere privilege to deal with your shop and to get to know all of the great guys behind the workbench that are responsible for making musicians and gear-heads like myself experience 'guitar and amplifier utopia.' Words almost can't describe how much I appreciate the service I've received from you fine gents, as well as the truly amazing results I've experienced on every piece of my gear that your shop has worked on.
...The custom Woolly Mammoth Ivory nut that you installed and the amazing setup that you performed has my head spinning with amazement. The sweet harmonics and dramatically increased sustain of this new nut (coupled with the perfect action and playability of your great setup) has now made this Strat a million times more amazing than I could have ever imagined!... Now I've heard some people in my day referred to as a 'nut job,' but little did I know just how important a nut job really is. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! ...Your shop and your staff have truly changed how I view my passion of guitar and amp repairs/modifications, and I am eternally grateful for the work you've done for me.
All the best,
All I can say is, if anyone gets to read my opinion... I want you all to know that Schroeder is top notch!!! AAA+ work that is worth every penny.... If anyone needs work on their gear, I highly recommend Schroeder. These guys saved my emotional state for the holidays.
I just wanted to follow up on what a great initial experience I had at your repair shop. You guys were more than just professional, you handled my tech difficulties on the spot and were just "cool" guys to deal with in general. I've been trying to find a decent repair tech for both my guitar and amp issues now for like the past 5 years and I've had to either deal with crappy service or bullshit attitudes from owners and/or techs. This definitely was not the case at Schroeder. I'm telling every musician I know about your shop, I call it a "diamond in the ruff". I too will be coming to you guys for all my tech issues, from my Les Paul to my Orange AD30 and everything in between.
You guys did some work on my Gibson SG almost a year ago and I am still super pleased with what you guys did to it. You brought new life to the guitar! THANKS!!! -Matthew S., Audio Engineer
Thank you so much for taking care of my beer-battered AC30 last weekend. You're a real life-saver! I was totally lost in Chicago, on the road with busted amp...stoked I found Schroeder! Everyone I met there (in person or on phone) was a complete professional...friendly and knowledgeable -something you don't get too much of in this business. If you're ever around DC/Baltimore, hit me up. I'll be sure to refer any Chicago repair needs I hear of your way. And the next time we're up there, I'll be making time to try out one of those DB7's...they look amazing!
Played Allman Brother tunes the whole 2 hours. Lots of bends.... Chords stayed in tune so beautifully up and down the neck. Insert GIANT smile here! Killer sustain!!!!!!!!! The frets are smooth as silk. I played some ABB stuff I did not know I even remembered, Hootchie Cootchie Man, Please Call Home, Mountain Jam and some standard stuff, Cross To Bear, Whipping Post, Les Bress, etc. Very nice playing and sounding. Hair on the back of my neck still standing up!!!!!!!!
The routing work that you did looks fantastic, and the bone nut is amazing. I had no idea a high quality nut could make that much difference in the overall sound. -Michael
...I honestly did not believe a guitar could do what yours does. It is not just marginally better than other guitars I have owned, it is a quantum step better. Thanks again for this incredible guitar. Warm regards,
-Allen Johnson, Jr.