Home / Apex User Guide

Before you start

Power:
The Apex Preamp can be run at both 9v and 18v. 9V operation requires 29 mA and 18V requires 50 mA. We recommend running the unit at 9V. It will function at 18V but sounds best at 9V. Alternatively, a 9v battery will work fine.

Signal settings:
Clean/Dirty Amp - The Apex output jack should be plugged into your Amps input jack and your guitar cable plugged into the Apex input jack. Make sure to turn the cab sim OFF.

Amp FX Loop - To run your Apex in the loop of your amp plug your guitar in the Apex input jack, then plug the Apex output into your amps return jack. Your Apex will now act as the amps EQ, volume, and gain controls. Make sure to turn the cab sim OFF.

Interface - If you are running the Apex direct into your interface than the Apex output jack should be plugged into one of your interface’s input jack slots. Your interface needs to have ¾ inch inputs (guitar cable size) to be able to run your Apex direct. Make sure to turn the cab sim ON.

Pedalboard to FOH - To run your whole pedalboard direct to the front-of-house PA system have your Apex last in the pedal chain with the cab sim ON, then take the output of the Apex and plug it into the FOH mixing board (or have the sound guy do this!). Make sure to turn the cab sim ON.

Amp settings:
Whether your using the Apex to create an entirely new distortion channel or stacking the Apex on your favorite existing high gain channel we recommend starting with all EQ settings at noon and tweaking to taste from there. It’s important to use conservative amounts of gain when using the Apex as a tone stack on an already dirty tone. If you are using the Apex in the FX loop of your Amp then you are bypassing the amps EQ controls and will not need to worry about them! 

EQ:
The Apex comes with the industry standard bass, middle, and treble knobs. These EQ controls on the Apex are more fine-tunable and give a more realistic, responsive amp feel. We recommend starting at noon with each control and tweaking to taste from there.

Gain:
The Apex Preamp comes with a massive amount of gain on tap. We recommend starting with the gain knob on 0 and slowly turning it up till to reach your desired level of saturation.

Gate:
To tame the massive amounts of gain available on the Apex we developed a brand new, ultra powerful 3 stage noise-gate. While the gate is super powerful it is also super transparent, keeping your guitar tone full bodied and noise free! Turning the GATE knob all the way to the left will remove the noise-gate circuit from the board and completely bypass it. Try starting with the GATE knob completely off, then slowly rolling it into your signal to taste.

Cabinet Simulation:
The Apex comes with a by-passable cabinet simulator that was modelled after a modern 4x12 cabinet loaded with modded V30 speakers. The cab knob is a simple sweep from OFF to ON, ON is indicated by the red LED. When the CAB SIM knob is turned past the initial ON it acts as the virtual microphone sweep and will produce different cabinet sounds when swept back and forth. We recommend experimenting with the CAB SIM knob in many positions to find the right microphone placement for your desired tone! If you want to use your own IR, don’t forget to bypass the built-in cabinet simulator.