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*Soundgas Type 636P (Grampian Preamp)

Limited initial production build of our Grampian/Soundgas Type 636 germanium mic preamp in a box. 

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PRICE: £1,295.00 EX VAT (£1,554.00 INC VAT)

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PRODUCT DESCRIPTION

Buy the desktop version of our Soundgas Type 636: no corners cut, all the ragged filthy glory of the Grampian/Soundgas 636 mic preamp in a handy portable unit. 

And now we also have the two-channel rack version available. Find out about the Soundgas Type 636P2.

Description

Preorders now open for Build #3 – these will be produced between July & September 2022.

Why preorders? It’s similar to crowdfunding: building these requires a large upfront outlay in parts and time – your support means we can secure components and allocate resources to produce them more quickly. We will be building 20 units in Summer 2022.

What is it? This is the hairy circuit you find in the mic preamp section of the Soundgas Type 636 – based on the Grampian Type 636 – famously used and abused by Lee Scratch Perry and Pete Townshend – and many others since. This is designed and built absolutely in the spirit of the original vintage units – no surface mount components or tone sapping DSP. 

How is this version different to the Prototypes? Photos are of the latest version. Based on feedback and our own testing of the original units, we have moved the input and output sockets to the rear of the box and added a three position attenuation switch on the output. This to tame the massive amount of gain produced when dialling in maximum overdrive/filth: now you can have all the dirt without overloading your amp/ears/signal chain. We have kept the industrial/functional aesthetic of the prototypes with a raw casing and just the switch, light and knob on the top.

More information:

The unit features a balanced input via combined TRS/XLR socket, vintage germanium transistor circuitry with original Grampian specification Mic transformer, overload lamp, input impedance switch, output 3-way attenuator switch and on/off toggle switch. Staying true to the original Grampian 636 design, the output is unbalanced on a ¼” jack socket and is out of phase.

Power is via a 12v external supply (included)

As with our original 636s, we have put tonal considerations ahead of all else. I was skeptical that we’d see a real benefit in using germanium transistors in the buffer section: all our original prototypes had used silicon and sounded great. However Ben and Dr Huw insisted that we build an all germanium version for comparison which proceeded to blow all the earlier versions out of the water.

The current situation regarding component shortages means that while we have secured enough vintage components to build 100 units, getting essential modern components is proving trickier with long lead times, a great deal of uncertainty and a significant outlay required. We are taking these preorders to help secure further components and to help fund the early stages of the production process. 

There’s more info on the build including photos and demos here.

To anyone reading this who has seen much cheaper versions for sale claiming they feature the Grampian ‘preamp circuit taken note for note’ we can categorically confirm that, while these units may be interesting in their own right, the circuit is certainly not an accurate recreation of the Type 636, nor do they sound at all close to either an original Grampian, or the Soundgas units. You get what you pay for. The mic transformer (one element of our design process that took a considerable amount of R&D to perfect) is not the correct value, and the circuit design means the Russian germanium transistors are not actually being driven in any meaningful way. The overdrive/distortion these units produce is not the harmonically rich germanium distortion that is the signature sound of a Grampian Type 636. We have already spent a good deal of time researching whether we could build a modern unit at a much lower price point by redesigning the original circuitry but sonically it simply does not stack up.

And if you have seen a certain guitar pedal that claims to recreate the sound of the Grampian Type 636 aux circuit as used by Pete Townshend of The Who, we can confirm that what this digital processor actually does is create a slightly boosted signal with none of the harmonic richness of the mic preamp circuitry which is what Pete actually used…

Condition

Brand new item.

Tax

For sales in UK the price will include 20% VAT. Buyers elsewhere may incur VAT or other local taxes on import.

Voltage Information

See description for more information.

Goes well with

*Soundgas Type 636P (Grampian Preamp)

*Soundgas Type 636P 2 - Twin Grampian Preamp

£1,990.00 EX VAT (£2,388.00 INC VAT)

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*Soundgas Type 636P (Grampian Preamp)

Gear Info

Soundgas News

Incoming! The Soundgas Type 636P (it’s not a pedal…)

Say hello to the prototype Type 636P: all the heft and magic of the our 636 mic preamp in a compact desktop box.

PUBLISHED: 10th Aug 2021

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*Soundgas Type 636P (Grampian Preamp)

Gear feature

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Grampian Type 636 – Believe the hype…

Grampians: some history and technical information about these superb, legendary machines. If you are looking to buy a Grampian or have one to sell in any...

PUBLISHED: 30th Jun 2016

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*Soundgas Type 636P (Grampian Preamp)

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Grampian & Soundgas Type 636 Q & A Session

Video from the Q&A session we did on the Grampian and Soundgas Type 636 units, plus an update on the Soundgas 636 build. Also Jane Weaver!

PUBLISHED: 29th Oct 2019

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USEFUL RESOURCES

*Soundgas Type 636P (Grampian Preamp)

Manuals

Soundgas Type 636P Manual

The one page "manual" that comes with our Type 636P germanium preamp - our zero-compromise recreation of the legendary Grampian mic preamp circuit.

*Soundgas Type 636P (Grampian Preamp)

Manuals

Schematics

Grampian 636 Instructions & Schematics

Directory of original Grampian documentation we have, including tech specs, schematics and articles, to view and download.

*Soundgas Type 636P (Grampian Preamp)

Manuals

Grampian Type 636 Operating Instructions

Grampian Type 636 Operating Instructions & Technical Specification reproduced into a searchable format.

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I have been buying vintage stuff for a long time from resellers/stores/techs. I've never been so surprised and pleased after opening! Just received a Roland RE-201 and VX55 mixer, they look and sound amazing! Thanks to Tony/Declan for the service and the Soundgas team will be back!

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Tom Rowlands - Chemical Brothers

Fantastic. From initial contact to the product landing at my door the service provided was outstanding. Safe and secure shipping, quality serviced product.

Tom Johnston

Just wanted to say thank you so much for your pinch roller and echo tape. I've had a space echo for years, been sent to a shop in NYC and it never worked quite right. After installing the roller and tape, my echo works like a dream. Really incredible expertise you all have! Thank you.

Andrew Potter

"Soundgas has an unbelievable selection of the cool, old stuff that’s hard to find. Tony knows his stuff and goes out of his way to make sure the transaction is a smooth one. Thanks guys!"

Tucker Martine - Flora Recording

"Soundgas provided the absolutely top service in terms of item quality as well as service and communication. Shipping was fast, packing was top notch. These people deserve the best reputation they already have. Many many thanks, guys."

Dupille Luc

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Matt Morton

"When you are spending big money of vintage gear it's nice to have the confidence of impeccable service, sales and support... some of the best in the industry! Impeccable people, incredible equipment… my poor poor fiancé"

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Grabbed a Roland RE-201 (early edition killer pre-amp) and Roland DC-50. Absolutely STUNNING. These guys truly live up to the hype. They are meticulous in caring for the gear. Also, I have a few guitar pedal and plug-in emulations of tape-echo sounds and after plugging in the real unit I can't tell you how insane the difference is. It is incredible. Especially that tone from the early pre-amp! I am totally amazed. I am in heaven :) They made it safely to Nashville from the UK and were packed really really well! Thank you so much!! Worth every penny.

Chance Allen

“I have bought two Moog synths from Soundgas over the past year, and I cannot say enough wonderful things about their selection of vintage products, the level of service, diligent responses to email, and expedient shipping with copious protective packaging. Soundgas is an impressive operation. My synths also sound amazing! These folks have made my vintage keyboard dreams come true in short order!”

J Yates

"Engaging with old gear can sometimes be filled with a lot of uncertainty, and I can't imagine what more could be done to reduce this aspect of it on top of the service you provide. Really phenomenal and I couldn't be happier."

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“Imagine the perfect eBay.... with everything you never knew you wanted… and you can rest assured that your vintage and rare wobbly sound device will turn up on time and in one piece and possibly in even better condition that when it left the workshop. Soundgas - literally amazing."

Josh Lloyd-Watson & Tom McFarland - Jungle

"The packing job to get it over to the US was superb, and the sound and performance of my Space Echo exceeds all of my expectations. I hope to do business with Soundgas again in the future. Many thanks!”

Rhett Daily

As good as it gets. Tony, Dec and team have been incredible, prompt communication, great advice and outstanding service. It really felt like my Polysix came from a loving home.

Ben Parm

"Still in shock! Can not believe how good the seller is. This product was inspected, and shipped from the UK to the USA quicker than orders from my home state. Highly recommend these guys."

Thomas Tedesco

"Excellent equipment, wonderful service. I fully recommend Soundgas to anyone in the vintage gear market and I will definitely be a return customer. The gear itself was exactly as advertised and in great condition."

Hallam Kite

"Yes, sure, you can find a Space Echo on eBay, but you won’t find one like this — that’s certain. I am so pleased with my decision to buy from Soundgas, and suggest you stop your search now and just send them a message. You will undoubtedly find yourself writing an ecstatic review about yours in short time."

Ben Evolo

"Finally, a company that tracks down all those brilliant curiosities that bring so much character and personality to a studio."

Matthew Herbert

Purchased a Juno-60 and it works beautifully. Having gotten one teched before, I knew it was worth paying a premium to get it future proofed and Soundgas does just that. Shipped professionally from the UK to USA. Appreciate their expertise and professional demeanor!

Eric Cullen

“If you are a vintage audio gear head then this is the place you have been looking for all your life. Pretty much any piece of classic or obscure kit that you are after is available here... But the clincher for me is that the gear they sell has been restored by their top techs (unless otherwise noted) which is really very important when dealing with, for example, synths from 30 years ago.”

Lincoln Barrett / High Contrast

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Koko Hiras

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