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June 2017 Giveaway

MOTU ZBox 1-channel Passive Guitar Direct Box Reviews

4.0 stars based on 12 customer reviews
Questions about the MOTU ZBox 1-channel Passive Guitar Direct Box?

Questions about the MOTU ZBox 1-channel Passive Guitar Direct Box?

Or call us at (800) 222-4700

Sweetwater Advice

  • Scott Augustyniak

    I finally decided to give this box a try since I play my guitar through an interface more than an amp anymore. Plugged it in and immediately heard a boost in the mids. I didn't realize what I was missing until I gained it. It gives you a better "amp-like" response, plus I find myself playing more.

  • Bassfingerz
    from New York, NY February 20, 2017

    A MUST for those using amp simulation plugins

    I actually bought this a few years ago.
    I still use it to this day, when using Amplitube 4 and the amp simulators from EZmix2. I have it mounted to my desk.
    I was reminded over the weekend what it does.
    I was curious and plugged straight into the interface, without the ZBox. YUCK!
    I plugged in again with the ZBox, so much better. It's more than suddle.
    Definitely makes a huge difference. love Love LOVE it.
    I'm glad I purchased this, and will continue to use it.
    I highly recommend for those who use amp simulation plugins.

  • Rojeh
    from New York March 4, 2016Music Background:
    Musician, Engineer

    Love It

    This box does what it says. It can be subtle or not depending on the guitar or bass you plugin but it does bring back lost tone and you lose the icepick sound of digital highs.

  • chris blue
    from Boston, MA May 5, 2013Music Background:
    Pro Musician

    MOTU Z Box

    This is a must if you run your guitar straight into a tape echo . before your amp. The impedance correction is like night and day for your tone. No more mud, no loss of clarity. Try this thing anytime you experience tone sucking.. Good for correcting tonal problems with acoustic/electric guitars too.

  • chris blue
    from Boston, MA May 1, 2013Music Background:
    Pro Musician

    MOTU Z Box

    Awesome clarity in front of an outboard tape delay before the input jack. Balanced impedance is a must.

    My assigned sales rep. Matt was instrumental to my satisfaction. Thanks Matt.

  • Chris Loafman
    from Dillon, SC December 24, 2010Music Background:
    Home Recording, Guitar

    z box

    Been having issues with line levels when recording directly with my guitar into my MBox. Greg Savino recommended giving this product a try. Wow, I can finally hear what Amplitude sounds like!.

    Greg is a great tech to help you out with issues.

  • Customer
    from Los Angeles January 10, 2014Music Background:
    Recording, Mixing, Musician

    This thing actually does make a difference

    I was pretty skeptical of this thing, but I felt the price was not too high and I could always return it if it did not work, but it actually really does make a difference. I use a Sans Amp PSA1 and some regular pre-amps with DI and this thing really does add back some body and some harmonics to what I hear recorded. It really surprised me how improved the sound of the Sans Amp was too, which sounded good already.

    Very happily surprised. I have bought plenty of 40 dollar wonder things in the past and almost always been lete down, but this little guy is really working out well.

  • dnash
    from stratford, ct May 6, 2016Music Background:

    who's thunk?

    i came across this box by complete accident, but having read the description and relating to the problem of thin, washed out, screechy guitar tone when recording direct i figured i'd take a chance. while the effect is subtle, it absolutely makes a difference when tracking my guitars. to compare oranges to nectarines, i have a high end peterson strobe tuner that has a setting for "rhythm guitar" that tunes perfect 4ths and 5ths. when you tune a guitar "normally", each string may be in perfect tune but the harmonic discordance generated by the "average" distance between notes is sriking when compared to perfect 4th and 5th interval tuning. the result is that the guitar just sits perfectly in a mix. the Zbox has the same type of effect in the sense that the guitars just feel warmer and more dynamic; more real. something you feel as much as hear. for the price, it's certainly worth trying for yourself.

  • michael tuminello
    from shreveport, la. June 27, 2012Music Background:
    Recording Engineer &, Pro Musician

    worth more

    for me it made quite a difference in my di bass guitar tone when recording. Thank You Mark Magdich!

  • Matt Busch
    from New York, USA April 15, 2010Music Background:

    Really good product

    For people that have an audio interface and want to get direct guitar sounds into their computer in order to run guitar amp emulation software all WITHOUT breaking the bank, this is for you!

    Just plug this into your audio interface, plug your guitar into the hi-z or lo-z input, and you're ready to go.

    It sounds great. MUCH better than putting my guitar straight into my audio interface (Motu 24 i/o). I've been using MOTU products for years and I've never been disappointed. They are a GREAT company.

    At this price, you can't go wrong.

  • Charb
    from norcal April 9, 2010Music Background:
    home hobbiest

    zbox, something to consider

    I got this for two reasons:

    a. The website claim
    b. The price isn't enough to scare me away

    The item seems well built. It's a metal box, with nice rubber pads on the bottom to help skidding. The cable is really just the right length.

    Obviously, connection isn't anything difficult. For my guitars the hiz input is the correct connection and the connections seem nice and solid. My soundcard is the profire 610 which already has good preamps/hiz connectors...but I was enticed by the claims.

    So how does it sound? Well, it's really subtle, though there is a difference. To me it seems as though the mids are pushed up just a hint. Also, there seems to be an additional smoothness when playing direct now. What I don't know is if these (and I want to stress very subtle) differences are simply because there is another link in the chain, of if there really is any tech involved.

    It's 40 bucks so it's not going to break the bank. Motu's website seems to claim an awful lot and it's not that dramatic. But if you are a tone geek like me and like trying different cables and such it might be a nice addition for you. (and of course, as always, sweetwater is great to work with)

  • ges
    from Utah January 20, 2014Music Background:

    Really can't tell any difference in sound

    I experimented quite a bit but in the end I just could not tell one iota of difference in the sound of my guitar when run through the ZBox. So, I have to give it a one star. If it had done anything at all to improve sound input I would have rated it higher. Really don't understand this product.

  • Raju
    from Seattle,WA April 26, 2010Music Background:

    If you have 1M Ohm Interface

    If you own a interface with 1M Ohm, then this will be of no use. It might have a subtle effect but you ear CANNOT tell the difference. If you DO NOT own a 1 M Ohm interface, then this will be a huge help. No bashing Motu, it will be very useful to lots of people. Just want to make people aware of it.

Questions about the MOTU ZBox 1-channel Passive Guitar Direct Box?

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