& Stereo Drive
The mail would start innocently enough: "Hi, I love
your amps!" Then would come the hook: "So...,
can I play the STR-Tweed in the same room with Aunt Rene?
She's not a heavy napper but her hearing aid can be dialed back."
Truth be told, even the little ST-6V6se would make Aunt Rene's
eyes change hue given a heavy hand and increased endorphins.
But we love the 6V6se, STR, and AST and really didn't feel like
saddling each with Master volume. The combos deserve
the Swart Hallmark purity of circuit.
the dreaded A Word: Attenuator. Yeah, we know.
And Sir Michael thought there were plenty of attenuators to
choose from. On the other hand, could thy Swart Magic
come into play yet again, moving this device to another plane?
Well, after a solid year of research, trials, virtual
black holes, and head scratching, we have the answer:
Meet the Swart Night Light; there's NOTHING
and beyond your average
attenuator, the Night Light offers defeatable
bulb filament compression and the
ability to run TWO Swarts in Stereo via
the Output stage of amp one.
Swart engineering &
Swart quality ~ Night Light on the Shop Bench - Click
for full 1200px View
succeed in making an attenuator that is optimized for our lower wattage
combos, standing apart from the crowd. And while this beast
brings the excellent Swart tone down to whisper quiet levels,
keeping the tonal harmonic integrity intact while retaining the quality
of output tube breakup, it's much, much more.
the completely defeatable (flip a switch and you bypass the whole
nine yards) circuit has a unique bulb filament compression stage,
giving the attenuated signal a more saturated tube-esque compression,
bringing a bit of the Brown Sound to play(this is a subtle effect).
Slam a chord, and watch the main jewel lamp glow as it compresses
into sweetness. A flip of the switch removes this stage if not
actual attenuation is controlled via a three position switch,
avoiding the issues with mediocre attenuator pots robbing
the sonics of heft and tone. The most attenuated position
leaves surprisingly robust breakup at a shade over natural
string loudness. It's THE answer to your significant
other wanting to burn a hole through the center of your skull.
The current Night Light actually has FOUR LEVELS of attenuation,
broken down below.
was all the Night Light did, it would be good enough.
Yet ole Michael didn't stop there. He wanted a way to
link up TWO amps, the first driving the second via it's full
OUTPUT stage, bring all the effects PLUS power tube drive,
this reduced to proper input level, then fed through the INPUT
of the second amp! The number of tonal variations is
staggering; simply put, this is a boon for all Tone Explorers.
Run an AST into a ST-6V6se! Or how about the STR-tweed
into the little ST. Man, it's just too fun to be
legal. I could ramble for 10 paragraphs and still not
get near all the possibilities with this setup.
When you add in the attenuation aspect, this little magic
box gives more than it has a right to.
it's compact, and cool to stare at, just like all the Swart
gear. And last but not least, it makes a great NIGHT
LIGHT! Bring your whole family in to gaze at the beauty.
The night light is
very portable and built like a rock. It's the size of
a small effects pedal: 4.67" L x 3.68" W x 1.18"
H. This thing can practically fit in your pocket.
The Night Light was
designed specifically for the ST-6V6se, STR, AST, and AST
Pro. But even though optimized for the Swart brigade,
the Night Light will work with ANY amplifier 22w or less with
the light compression, 30w with it off. In addition,
it's designed for 4-8ohms load. 16ohms will not work
with this version of NL.
Bored by the plethora
of text? Hit the bullets:
settings (4 Attenuation Levels)
BULB Compression Mode
This mode runs the attenuated signal through a Swart jewel
lamp filament, bringing a subtle tube compression/brown
sound goodness. Ever wonder what your signal sounded
like through a light bulb? You'll be addicted in
seconds. NOTE: This switch ONLY works with LEVEL chickenhead
Removes the light compressor out of the circuit for more
natural dynamics. With level at 12oclock, this is least
attenuation/highest volume setting.
Heavy duty 3 position Switch
This main chicken head switch allows you to switch between
FOUR different attenuation settings. At first setting,
or 12oclock, the NL can cycle between the COMP and DECOMP
switch which brings two levels. DECOMP is least
attenuated or loudest setting with COMP position bringing
more attenuation via the bulb filament. Turn the switch
to 2oclock will bring more attenuation, bypassing the DECOMP/COMP
switch. The lowest setting is about the same loudness as
your guitar strings.
Guitar Amp, guitar line level out
(works in attenuation mode or bypassed)
- Allows you to send the complete amp signal to another
guitar amp. Now you an sound like Jimi in BOLD AS LOVE!
Well, maybe. You COULD. Seriously, have you
heard two Swarts together? You should. .
- You can send
the AST effects, reverb and Tremolo to a standard non effects
amp. This allows you to run the AST in stereo with another
amp sharing the effects between the two amps.
- With the Night Light
it is now possible to get the AST sound into your 200 watt
live guitar amp. Just plug the Night Light into the AST;
set it to the sound you like and run a line from the Night
Light to your 200 watt stack for ear shattering levels.
- it is now easy to
run a Space tone into a AST or a AST into a Space Tone.
- It's a virtual blue
night light show of psychedelic craziness. And it looks
cool. Keep your 3 yr old entertained till the wee hours.
Swart Night Light Attenuator/Drive
up to 22w ~ 4-8ohm Load............................$199
Night Light w/Swart Cables Package..............................$229
Light plus two 3ft 16ga heavy duty Speaker Cables w/Neutrik
Jacks - See
Cables photo & Info
Swart Night Light
More? See the ever-evolving NIGHT
All shots above
and below click to full size!
for Night Light goodness in full
Truth be told,
properly demonstrating the sonic qualities of an attenuator
online is not an easy feat. You really need
to hear it in person to get a proper fix on quality
and performance. That being said, our
ole buddy Larry "Soulcactus" Kanefsky
does a fine job showing us what the Night Light can
do, though video camera compression of volume can
hide level differences. Check out the Soulcactus
vids on youtube below.
Light Vid 1 •
Light Vid 2
above & below for Night Light in Shop - FULL SIZE