Tuesday, May 29, 2012

T-Rex Fuel Tank Chameleon Power Supply Review

Good day!

Ok. I do not have any powered pedals on my pedalboard (except for my Boss tuner), as I endorse Cave Passive Pedals, but if I did have some I would be first in line to pick up a T-Rex Fuel Tank Chameleon power supply. This is the best-looking and most versatile/flexible portable power supply assemblies I have tried, and is also one of the more spendy ones. T-Rex offers a few different power supplies, and this is one is their best offering (in my opinion), even though it not the top of their line.

The Fuel Tank Chameleon It is not as big as it looks in the photos, but it will still take up a few spaces on your pedalboard, measuring 6.3 x 1.6 x 3.2 inches. It is solidly built with a green-finished steel case, and come in a bit over 3 pounds. Their products have always been bulletproof, and this one also appears to be made to last.

Let’s look at power. This T-Rex product comes with an industry standard removable IEC power cable, and it is switchable from 115V to 230V. So you can take this to Europe, switch out the input cable and still be in business. It has the capability of 1500mA of total power output through its 6 isolated outputs (only 5 can be used at a time) which should be plenty for most any pedalboard setup. Keep in mind that those outputs can be daisy-chained, so you can run a lot more that 5 pedals off this thing.

And you can run a bunch of different voltages from this unit at the same time. Outputs 1 through 3 can be individually set at either 9V DC or 12V DC, and output 4 can be set to either 9V DC or 18V DC. Output 5 is switchable for 9V DC or 12V DC and output 6 is solely for 12V AC. Outputs 5 and 6 cannot be used at the same time. All voltages are switched via little tiny dip switches.

These outputs put out 300mA at 9V or 12V and 150mA at 18V, so read the directions carefully, and do you math if you are going to daisy-chain things together. You don’t want to overload any of the circuits…

So, you can pretty much get the correct power for any of your pedals, and chances are also good that T-Rex provided the cables you will need to attach them too. This product came with 9 DC pedal link cables between 8 and 40 inches long, a 30-inch 5-pedal daisy chain cable, a blue AC cable for Line6 pedals, a 30-inch DC to mini jack cable and a red AC cable for the T-Rex Replica Delay. That is a huge wad of cables, and I have not found any pedals in my stash (or my friends’) that this thing will not power up. All of the outlets are center negative, BTW.

I broke out all of my old pedals, and borrowed a few more, and ran them together in all different configurations using the T-Red as the sole power supply. Pedal types included delays, distortions, a wah pedal, tuners, choruses, octavizers, and god knows what all. Brands included Boss, Ibanez, Dunlop, DOD, and Line6, among others, and they all worked fine with this unit.

The Chameleon was nice and quiet and did not make any interference that manifested itself as noise in my signal chain. It also did not seem to get ungodly hot, so pretty much it did everything it was supposed to while providing a level or versatility that most guitarists with big setups would appreciate. A winner, in other words!

The T-Rex Fuel Tank Chameleon power supply is a great product, and is priced accordingly. The list price is $249, with a street price of $149.99. If I was running a larger pedalboard with a ton of power needs I would be all over one of these, even at a bill and a half.



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