Bass players will know that Warwick have always been at the top of their game. But is this newest installment too big for its boots; sporting higher functioning features than ever before…
The Warwick Jonas Hellborg amp set-up comprises of a lethal 2×250 watt power amp and the user-friendly, knob-galore preamp. When taking a look at it for the first time, it’s got a sense of urgency about it, despite its clean-cut looks. This is sure to be talked about in the same reverent breath as Trace Elliot’s pro equipment or even Eden’s hardware.
Whether it be in your recording rack at home or gigging, the Hellborg system’s preamp knobs and levels are all backlit for easy navigation. More clever design features are abundant with this reserved professional preamp. The input is XLR, there are bypass switches, mute switches, a fantasticly clear XLR DI output with a pre/post EQ/effects switch and even a tuner output.
Given that this set-up is very high end hardware, you can see that there has been no expensive spared to keep the tone paramount and unparalled. Warwick’s sublime EQ is one of the best features of this system. While being very comprehensive, this can shave whatever you need off the dry tone of your bass.
As for the treatment of tone, especially when bring the preamp’s gain knob into the equation, there are no holds bared. It certainly sounds a lot louder, mainly because it is down to the tremendous stereo or bridged Warwick power amp. However, when really going for it and wanting heavier stuff, use a pedal. While versatile, this preamp doesn’t have a thrash setting.
While arguably over-engineered, Warwick have shown that there can be no compromise when talking their language. This is what they do and if you want the best you’ll have to pay for it!
The Warwick Hellborg Preamp retails at £1,679
The Warwick Stereo Power Amp retails at £1,739.