Power up your pedalboard with today's Stomboxtober giveaway from Mono! Enter below for your chance to win a Power Supply!
|The MONO Power Supply, Large is an ultra-slim, expandable pedalboard power supply. It features 10 high current, low-noise isolated outputs, including 3 with variable voltage (9/12/18V). Each Power Supply is built with a lightweight and durable aluminum casing and at just 1” depth, will fit underneath the shallowest of pedalboards. When you’re ready to step up to a bigger board, you can simply link the MONO Power Supply, Large, to a Small or Medium and power even more pedals.|
An ultra-compact, road-ready pedalboard unit that features 9 and 18 volt outputs.
San Luis Obispo, CA (January 25, 2021) -- Ernie Ball has introduced the Volt Power Supply, an ultra-compact, road-ready pedalboard unit that puts a complete powering solution in the palm of your hand.
With its multiple isolated, high current DC power outputs, the Volt supplies clean, regulated power to almost any digital or analog effects pedals. The compact and rugged housing can fit almost anywhere on even the densest pedalboard. If you need low noise and reliable power for any gig, the Ernie Ball Volt is perfect for your rig!
Measuring just 90 x 59 x 23mm, this power supply is smaller than a pack of Slinkys, so it fits almost anywhere on even the busiest pedalboard. When touring internationally, you can plug the Volt into virtually any outlet – from the US and UK to the EU and China – using the universal AC adapter. And when the house lights go down, the Volt’s LED indicators give you the status of each input/output at a glance, so you never miss a beat. There’s even the option of daisychaining multiple Volt units, so your setup stays streamlined, even when your sound evolves.
Constructed with tough shielded housing, the Ernie Ball Volt takes the punishment of duty on your pedalboard. Thermally protected and short circuit-proof – with ultra-low noise operation that won’t compromise your tone – the Volt lets you forget about your rig and focus on your performance.
Ernie Ball Volt Power Supply features:
- Regulated 9 and 18 Volt DC outputs.
- LED indicators for each input/output.
- Short Circuit and thermally protected.
- Universal AC-adapter included with four (4) interchangeable plugs for US, UK, EU, and China.
- Five (5) DC Power cables included (500mm long)
For more information:
How first-generation DSP pedals from Line 6, Eventide, and Strymon forced a power-supply revolution.
In my June 2020 State of the Stomp, we talked about the evolution of pedal power, from the days of disposable batteries to integrated, isolated supplies. These were linear supplies equipped with large transformers, taking mains power, converting it, rectifying it, and regulating it to make noise-free-and-stable 9V outputs. However, over time batteries and the supplies designed to replace them went from being more than enough to woefully insufficient. How?
Let’s talk about battery capabilities. Batteries deliver energy with a specific potential (volts) and capacity (amps). Batteries can propel cars at ludicrous speeds or barely keep your wristwatch ticking. If you were to autopsy a typical 9V battery, you’d find six little 1.5 volt batteries inside, wired to make 9V at the battery terminals, ensuring your favorite effect has enough electrical headroom to function. Unfortunately, those tiny batteries don’t hold much energy and can’t deliver that energy at high rates. This means they do well powering a fuzz that draws little current (~1 mA), but as guitar effects became more power hungry, the venerable 9V and the linear power supplies that mimicked them were outstripped. An arms race between pedal effects manufacturers and power-supply makers had begun.
The advent of digital signal processing (DSP) quickly caused an increase in the power requirements of effects. The first guitar DSP products drew whatever they needed from their own 120 VAC mains power supplies. Refrigerator-sized collections of primordial digital reverbs and delays consumed enough power to spin electric meters wildly and dim every light bulb on the block. Companies like Roland/Boss eventually made digital delays that drew less than 100 mA from a 9V battery, putting DSP at your feet! While many players were content to stomp on these little marvels, others wanted more—more features, more functions, more algorithms, more power.
Companies like Line 6 started making effects that weren’t just one effect but modeled many effects and did so with more fidelity than had been previously available in digital stompboxes. Internally, these devices had complicated power subsystems of their own, powering analog circuits, processors, memories, and converters. A 9V battery’s capacity just couldn’t cut it. Companies like Voodoo Lab modified existing power products to appease these power pigs. They even labeled ports “L6,” identifying the responsible party. Things were peaceful for a period, but others developed effects with voracious power budgets. Eventide released their Factor pedals, and while available integrated supplies could power one of them, their introduction heralded that power supplies were coming up short. Pedals with high current needs became ubiquitous. High-wattage pedals from Line 6, Eventide, and Strymon began to show up in multiples on single boards. To cope with a marketplace dominated by linear supplies that weren’t totally ready for them, these high-power effects started shipping with their own switch-mode-style supplies.
The “switch” in switch mode comes from the switching transistors that chop the wall voltage at high speed to make use of smaller components at higher efficiencies. While smaller and more efficient means big power in small packages, switch mode has a bad rap with some, due, in part, to its typical noisy performance. Since consumer products are often built to a price, and designers may not prioritize noise performance to save cost, many output a DC voltage with switching-related noise tagging along for the ride. Power supply companies like Truetone and Strymon got clever and mashed together the benefits of switch mode and linear supplies. These internal switch mode supplies do the heavy lifting, and their outputs are polished up with a linear regulator. Almost every integrated supply company has moved or is moving to these hybrid supplies, because we’ve demanded the power outputs of highly efficient switch-mode supplies with noise performance like old-school linear supplies and batteries. With both terms met, there is peace again on our pedalboards.
It’s easy to take for granted the amount of innovation required to have as much fun as we do playing music. Whether it’s flashy effects or the modest supplies that keep them twinkling, an army of engineers and artists has been working for decades, keeping us in marvelous technologies that ultimately go unsung as we sing the songs they helped create.