1) The Synergy modular products must never be operated without modules
installed in all slots without covering the unused slots.
2) Slots without modules must be covered with a blank cover panel, available
from Synergy Amps.
3) Never place your hand or any other object inside an open module slot for
any reason!
4) If a foreign object does accidently fall inside an open slot, immediately turn
the main power off and UNPLUG THE AC POWER CORD. Tip the unit forward
to get the object to fall forward and out of the slot. Do not stick your fingers
into the slot to reach it.
5) If the foreign object has fallen inside and you cannot see the object, do not
stick your hand into the slot to search for it. Take the unit to a qualified
service technician to safely remove it.
Failure to heed the above warnings can result in
personal injury or death. We want you to enjoy your
Synergy Modular gear and not get hurt being foolish and
failing to adhere to the warnings.
Please keep this instruction manual for future
reference and for the duration of owning this
SYNERGY PREAMP. Please carefully read and
understand the instructions inside this user’s
manual before attempting to operate your new
amp. This instruction manual includes essential
safety information regarding the use and
maintenance of the PREAMP. Take special care to
heed all warning symbols and signs inside this
manual and those printed on the PREAMP itself.
The lightning flash with an arrow triangular symbol
is intended to alert the user to the presence of
non-insulated “dangerous voltage” within the
products enclosure, and may be of sufficient
magnitude to constitute a risk of electric shock
on the rating label.
If you are not sure of the type of power supply to
your home, consult your product dealer or local
power company.
8. Grounding or Polarization
– This product may be equipped with a polarized
alternation-current line plug (a plug having one
blade wider than the other). This plug will fit into
the power outlet only one way. This is a safety
feature. If you are unable to insert the plug fully
into the outlet, try reversing the plug. If the plug
should still fail to fit, contact your electrician to
replace your obsolete outlet. Do not defeat the
safety purpose of the polarized plug.
9. Power-Cord Protection
– Power-supply cords should be routed so that
they are not likely to be walked on or pinched by
items placed upon or against them, paying
particular attention to the cord in correspondence
of plugs, convenience receptacles, and the point
where they exit from the PREAMP.
The exclamation point triangular symbol is
intended to alert the user to the presence of
important operating and maintenance (servicing)
instructions in the user manual accompanying this
1. Read Instructions – All the safety and operating
instructions should be read before this product is
2. Retain Instructions – The safety and operating
instructions should be retained for future
3. Heed Warnings – All warnings on the PREAMP
and in the operating instructions should be
adhered to.
4. Follow Instructions – All operating and use
instructions should be followed.
5. Water and Moisture – The PREAMP should not
be used near water – for example, a bathtub,
washbowl, kitchen sink, laundry tub, wet
basement, or near a swimming pool, and the like.
6. Heat – PREAMP should be situated away from
heat sources such as radiators, heat registers,
stoves, or other PREAMP (including PREAMPs) that
produce heat.
7. Power Sources – This product should be
operated only from the type of power source
10. Cleaning – The PREAMP should be cleaned only
as recommended by the manufacturer. Clean by
wiping with a cloth slightly damp with water. Avoid
getting water inside the PREAMP.
11. Non-use Periods – The power cord of the
PREAMP should be unplugged from the outlet
when left unused for a long period of time.
12. Object and Liquid Entry
– Care should be taken so that objects do not fall
and liquids are not spilled into the enclosure
through openings.
13. Damage Requiring Service
– The PREAMP should be serviced by qualified
service personnel when:
A. The power-supply cord or the plug has been
damaged; or
B. Objects have fallen, or liquid has been spilled
into the PREAMP; or
C. The PREAMP has been exposed to rain; or
D. The PREAMP does not appear to operate
normally or exhibits a marked change in
performance; or
E. The PREAMP has been dropped, or the enclosure
F. The PREAMP needs tube replacement or biasing
14. Servicing – The user should not attempt any
service to the PREAMP beyond that described in
the operating instructions.
All other servicing should be referred to qualified
service personnel.
15. Ventilation – Slots and openings in the cabinet
are provided for ventilation and to ensure reliable
operation of the product and to protect it from
overheating, and these openings must not be
blocked or covered. The openings should never be
blocked by placing the product on a bed, sofa, rug,
or other similar surface. This product should not be
placed in a built- in installation such as a bookcase
or rack.
16. Attachments – do not use attachments not
recommended by the product manufacturer as
they may cause hazards.
17. Lightning – For added protection for this
product before a lightning storm, or when it is left
unattended and unused for long periods of time,
unplug it from the wall outlet. This will prevent
damage to the product due to lightning and power
line surges.
18. Replacement Parts – When replacement parts
are required, be sure the service technician has
used replacement parts specified by the
manufacturer or have the same characteristics as
the original part. Unauthorized substitutions may
result in fire, electric shock, or other hazards.
19. Safety Check – Upon completion of any service
or repairs to this product, ask the service
technician to perform safety checks to determine
that the product is in proper operating condition.
20. FUSES – Always use the correct rating and type
of fuse as indicated on the rear panel. Note the
proper rating fuse is determined by the AC line
voltage in the country this unit is being operated.
NOTE: This equipment has been tested and found
to comply with the limits for a Class B digital
device, pursuant to part 15 of the FCC Rules. These
limits are designed to provide reasonable
protection against harmful interference in a
residential installation. This equipment generates,
uses and can radiate radio frequency energy and, if
not installed and used in accordance with the
instructions, may cause harmful interference to
radio communications. However, there is no
guarantee that interference will not occur in a
particular installation. If this equipment does cause
harmful interference to radio or television
reception, which can be determined by turning the
equipment off and on, the user is encouraged to
try to correct the interference by one or more of
the following measures: - Reorient or relocate the
receiving antenna. - Increase the separation
between the equipment and receiver. - Connect
the equipment into an outlet on a circuit different
from that to which the receiver is connected. Consult the dealer or an experienced radio/ TV
technician for help.
Changes or modifications not expressly approved
by the party responsible for compliance could void
the user’s authority to operate the equipment.
This device complies with part 15 of the FCC Rules.
Operation is subject to the following two
conditions: (1) This device may not cause harmful
interference, and (2) this device must accept any
interference received, including interference that
may cause undesired operation.
Congratulations on your purchase of the SYN1 preamp. The SYN1 is the
culmination of many years refining and fine tuning our modular preamp
concept. Please familiarize yourself with the many possibilities to get the best
performance out of your preamp.
The SYN-1 can be used in three primary applications:
1) The SYN-1 can be used to add channels to an existing head or combo. With this setup, you can
actually use the SYN1 to add the module as another channel to your amp and footswitch between
the channels in your amp and the SYN1.
* Your amp MUST have a series effects loop
* It will NOT work with certain loops.
* IMPORTANT - if placing the SYN-1 on top of a head cabinet or combo, you MUST place the
SYN-1 on
the opposite side of your amp's main transformer (usually the input side). Placing the
SYN-1 over the
mains transformer may cause noise to enter the signal chain.
2) Straight to front of house or monitor. To use the SYN1 in a “normal” live rig using guitar type
speakers, connect the MAIN out to the input of your power amp/speaker combination or into a
powered speaker specifically voiced for guitar. Alternately, you can connect the MAIN out into the
effects return of most amps and use the head or combo as just a power amp and the SYN1 becomes
the preamp.
* In a live setting you can use the cab simulated DI output to go straight to your board or
active monitor
3) Recording - use the SYN1 as a standalone preamp to record directly into your computer or direct
to a PA live, simply use the DI XLR balanced output to send the signal to the desired location.
* Use the DI output to connect to an external mic preamp and then directly to your software.
* The cab sym can be bypassed if you wish to use your own IRs.
These different methods will be explained in detail later in this manual. Please read the entire
manual to get a true understanding of all the possibilities.
FUSE: T300mA/250V @ 110-118VAC 50/60Hz - NORTH AMERICA
T150mA/250V @ 220-240VAC 50/60Hz - EUROPE
REPLACING MODULES: When inserting or removing modules, simply turn both thumbscrews to the left until
they fall loose. Do not remove the screw completely. Remove the module by pulling out on the thumbscrews.
Slide in a new module, and push in on the center knobs until flush with the front panel. Tighten the
thumbscrews, by turning to the right until snug.
It is HIGHLY recommended that you turn the SYN-1 OFF before swapping modules. If however you "hot
swap" a module, you may find that at times the switching logic is not working correctly. To re-set this, simply
turn the SYN-1 OFF and then back ON after one second.
1. INPUT Connects directly to your instrument
2. CH. - Selects the desired channel on your module.
3. BYPASS – This switch bypasses the SYN1 when using it in the “add channel to your amp” mode.
4. SAG - Under license from Steven Fryette Designs, the SAG knob mimics the voltage sag of a tube PREAMP.
This effect is subtle and is really a “feel” thing. It is recommended that you adjust the knob to level where
the LED just comes on with heavy guitar pick attack.
5. VOLUME - Depending on how the SYN-1 is connected, this knob either controls the overall volume of the SYN1
or the level of the main output.
6. IMPORTANT - When using the SYN-1 to add channels to your head or combo, the VOLUME control will not be
active. In this scheme, the VOLUME will adjust the level of your MAIN OUTPUT ONLY.
1. AC MAINS INPUT – Connect to a grounded outlet in accordance with the voltage and frequency
specified on the rear panel of your PREAMP.
Use only the factory supplied cord or a UL approved equivalent type.
2. POWER - Switches the main AC power on or off.
3. MAINS FUSE – The Mains fuse is located in the pull out tray at the bottom of the AC jack. This fuse
protects the unit from serious damage in case of electrical faults.
Warning! Replace only with same fuse type and rating.
4. GLOBAL GRND LIFT - This switch is used to eliminate ground loops that can occur when different earth
grounded pieces of audio equipment are interconnected. Simply set the switch for the least amount
of hum. If you do not hear any difference, leave the switch in the left position.
5. FOOTSWITCH - Use the supplied 1/4" stereo (RTS) cable to connect to included 2-button footswitch
6. DI OUTPUT - XLR output used to send your SYN-1 tone straight to the mixing board or active cabinet
• XLR LEVEL - A level pad for the XLR output. Use the setting that best matches your mixer.
• GRND LIFT - Lifts ground to prevent ground loops. Set for the lowest hum level.
• CAB SYM BYPASS - Removes the cabinet simulation circuitry to become a balanced full range
6. MAIN OUT – A full range output to connect to external devices such as power amps, FX, etc.
Note: This is not a speaker emulated output.
7. TO AMP FX RETURN: This output connects to the return of the FX loop of your external Amp. It is only
controlled by the channel volumes of the module, not by the VOLUME on the front (bottom right side)
of the SYN-1. In case you don’t use an additional power amp to your external Amp, you can use the
MAIN OUTPUT instead to have the SYN-1s VOLUME acting as an overall Master of your rig.
8. LEVEL HI LO (External Amp Loop) - Adjusts the level depending on your external Amp’s FX Loop. Use
the setting that sounds best and lets you adjust the overall volume easily.
9. FROM AMP FX SEND - Input coming from the ‘SEND’ or ‘PREAMP OUT’ of your external amp. (NOTE:
In case your external amp does not feature an FX loop and you operate the SYN-1 in front of it, run a
short patch cable from “TO AMP IN” to “FROM AMP FX SEND”. That way you can use the dry Amp in
the “BYPASS” setting of the SYN-1.)
10. FX SEND - This output connects to the input of your effects unit. Use a shielded cable.
11. FX RETURN - Connect the output of your effects unit using a shielded cable.
12. LEVEL HI LO (FX Loop)- Selects between line level and pedal level of the effects loop. Use the setting
that sounds best and does not cause excessive noise or distortion/loss of volume.
13. TO AMP IN - Buffered output for driving the input of your external Amp. Connect a high quality
shielded guitar cable from this output to the input of your Amp.
(See Note under 9. above)
The SYN-1 has an XLR cab simulated DI output which can be used to send the signal to an active monitor, mixing
board or audio interface. When using external cab simulation devices (think IR loaders), you can defeat the cabinet
simulation circuitry using the BYPASS switch.
The SYN-1 can be used to ADD channels to your existing head or combo. You will need three high quality, shielded
instrument cables in addition to your guitar cable.
1) Connect your guitar to the INPUT of the SYN-1 (SYN-1 front panel)
2) Connect an instrument cable from "TO AMP IN" on the rear of the SYN-1 to the INPUT of your AMP.
3) Connect an instrument cable from "FROM AMP FX SEND" to the FX LOOP SEND of your AMP
4) Connect an instrument cable from "TO AMP FX RETURN" to the FX LOOP RETURN of your AMP
5) The LEVEL switch between the "FROM AMP FX SEND" and "TO AMP FX RETURN" jacks is used to set the level of
the SYN-1 to help match your effects loop. Because there can widely varying levels between different effects loops,
a little bit of experimentation may be needed to find the optimum setting for this switch.
6) Connect the included 2 button FOOT SWITCH to the SYN-1. The CHANNEL switch selects between the channels
within the module. The BYPASS selects either the SYN1 as your preamp channels or bypasses the SYN1 and your
amp will operate as normal. You have just magically added two new channels to your amp.
* IMPORTANT - if placing the SYN-1 on top of a head cabinet or combo, you MUST place the SYN-1 on the
opposite side of
your amp's main transformer (usually the input side). Placing the SYN-1 over the mains
transformer may cause noise to
enter the signal chain.
There are some special requirements and/or caveats when using the SYN to add channels to your amp.
The loop on your amp MUST be a 100% series loop. The SYN1 will not work in a parallel loop. If in doubt, consult
the manufacturer of your amp to determine this. One known issue is with the Mesa Dual and Triple Rectifier, Road
King and Roadster amps that prevents the SYN1 from working properly in the loop. By design, the Boogie loops
always have a small amount of dry signal mixed in with the loop which will wreak havoc with many effects and also
the SYN1. There may be other amps that we are not aware of with loops that are not compatible. We will make this
information available as we discover these issues.
You can connect the MAIN OUT of SYN-1 to a power amp (rack mount or head/combo) as shown below.
When using the MAIN OUT, the front panel VOLUME knob will be functional. This is ideal for use with amps that do
not have a master volume. By Master Volume we mean a volume control located after the FX Return.
You can make the same connection using the "TO AMP FX RETURN" but in this case the front panel VOLUME knob
will not be functional. This connection is ideal for amps that do have a master volume. Using this connection will
alleviate the need to adjust multiple volume levels.
For amps that do not have an effects loop, you can connect the SYN-1 to the front of the amp. You will need one
short (6" ) quality, shielded instrument cable in addition to your guitar cable.
1) Connect your guitar to the INPUT of the SYN-1 (SYN-1 front panel)
2) Connect an instrument cable from "MAIN OUT" on the rear of the SYN-1 to the INPUT of your AMP.
3) On the rear of the SYN-1 connect an instrument cable from "TO AMP IN" to "FROM AMP FX SEND" as shown
4) In this method your BYPASS bottom on the front of the SYN1 turns OFF the SYNERGY channels.
5) Connect the included 2 button FOOT SWITCH to the SYN-1. The CHANNEL switch selects between the channels
within the module. The BYPASS selects turns the SYN-1 ON or OFF.
* IMPORTANT - if placing the SYN-1 on top of a head cabinet or combo, you MUST place the SYN-1 on the
opposite side of
your amp's main transformer (usually the input side). Placing the SYN-1 over the mains
transformer may cause noise to
enter the signal chain.
The CHANNEL button toggles between the channels on your SYNERGY modules.
Depending on how you connect the SYN-1 the BYPASS switch will function as either a MUTE or will select between
the SYN1 module channels and the channels in your amp.
Using the SYN1 With a MIDI Controller
The SYN1 doesn’t have MIDI capability of its own, but you can use a MIDI function switcher to interface your
SYN1 to a MIDI controller. The SYN1 has a standard ¼-inch TRS footswitch jack, which is compatible with most
function switchers that have one or more ¼-inch switching outputs. The Switch Gizmo by RJM Music
Technology is one example that works with the SYN1.
To hook it up, connect the SYN1’s footswitch jack to one of the switcher’s output jacks using a ¼-inch TRS
cable. The switcher then connects to your MIDI controller using a MIDI cable. The switcher will then be able
to control the SYN1’s channel and bypass. Consult your switcher manual for further setup instructions.
Thank you for choosing SYNERGY. SYNERGY takes
great pride in an extremely thorough testing
procedure which is implemented on each
product prior to shipment. In the unlikely event
that you have a problem with your Synergy
product, please refer to warranty below.
PREAMP: SYNERGY offers a limited Three (3) Year
warranty to the original purchaser that this
SYNERGY product will be free from defects in
material and workmanship. A dated sales receipt
will establish coverage under this warranty,
YOUR WARRANTY. This warranty does not cover
service or parts to repair damage caused by
accident, neglect, abuse, normal & wear, disaster,
misuse, abuse, over-powering, negligence,
inadequate packing or shipping procedures and
service, repair or any modifications to the product
which have not been authorized or approved by
product is defective in materials or workmanship
as warranted above, your sole remedy shall be
repair or replacement by SYNERGY as provided
CAUTION: Do NOT attempt to repair, modify or
service this Synergy product by yourself!!!
Please read the instruction manual for all safety
notifications, warnings and instructions.
SYNERGY utilizes tubes with extremely high
voltages that can cause serious injury or death.
Do not remove the chassis cover from the
PREAMP. All repair and service work must be
performed by SYNERGY or an authorized service
TUBES: SYNERGY warrants the original purchaser
that the specific tubes used in this SYNERGY
product will be free from defects in material and
workmanship for a period of 90 days from the
original date of purchase. A dated sales receipt
will establish coverage under this warranty. This
tube warranty will automatically terminate 90
days after the original retail sales date. This tube
warranty is in lieu of all other expressed
warranties. If tubes fail within the 90 day warranty
period your sole remedy shall be replacement of
tubes as provided below.
RETURN PROCEDURES: In the unlikely event that
a defect occurs please email A member of our
staff will email you a response in a timely manner.
Please include your phone number in case our
customer service department needs to reach you.
In most cases we can help you diagnose the
problem over the phone. If a product must be
sent to us, please follow the procedure outlined
• Defective products must be shipped,
together with proof of purchase, freight
pre-paid and insured to the Authorized
SYNERGY Service Center or directly to
• If a product must be returned to SYNERGY
for warranty replacement/repair, a Return
Authorization Number must be obtained
from our Customer Service Department
prior to shipping the product.
• Please contact SYNERGY Customer Service
Department for the Authorized SYNERGY
Service Center nearest you.
• Products must be shipped in their original
packaging or its equivalent; in any case,
the risk of loss or damage in transit is to be
borne by the purchaser.
• Please send to:
3383 Gage Ave.,
Huntington Park, CA 90255
• The Return Authorization Number must
appear in large print directly below the
shipping address.
• Always include a brief description of the
defect, along with your correct return
address and telephone number.
When emailing to inquire about a returned
product, always refer to the Return
Authorization Number.
If SYNERGY determines that the unit was defective
in materials or workmanship at any time during
the warranty period, SYNERGY has the option of
repairing or replacing the product at no additional
charge, except as set forth below.
• All replaced parts become a property of
SYNERGY. Products replaced or repaired
under this warranty will be returned via
ground shipping within the United States
or Canada - freight prepaid.
• SYNERGY is not responsible for costs
associated with expedited shipping, either
to SYNERGY or the return of the product to
the customer.
CUSTOMER SUPPORT: Our dedicated and friendly
staff is ready to help you with any warranty or
product questions you may have. Please email us
Thank you again for choosing SYNERGY and we
look forward to a long relationship!
All warranty repairs outside the United States and
Canada must be directed to the dealer or
distributor from which you purchased the
event will SYNERGY be liable for any incidental or
consequential damages arising out of the use or
inability to use of any SYNERGY product, even if a
SYNERGY dealer has been advised of the
possibility of such damages, or any other claim by
any other party. Some states do not allow the
exclusion or limitation of consequential damages,
so the above limitation and exclusion may not
apply to you. This warranty gives you specific legal
rights and you may also have other rights which
may vary from state to state.
FOR YOUR PROTECTION: Please complete the
warranty registration card within (10) ten days of
the date of purchase so that we may contact you
directly in the event a safety notification issued in
accordance with the 1972 Consumer Product
Safety Act.