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Type 85 Direct Box

The legendary Type 85 is hand-built for extreme performance, low noise, and low distortion.



The classic Type 85 connects any high-impedance instrument pickup, even piezo pickups, to a balanced microphone (XLR type) input. It provides a strong, clean signal to the mix board without adding noise or distortion. It won't change the tone or volume you hear from your own amp like passive direct boxes. It won't break just when you need it. It won't develop a dead battery on stage because it runs on Phantom power.


An industry-standard with road-proven ruggedness, the Type 85 is truly a legend.

Virtually indestructable

Armored inside and out, with a molded core wrapped in an extra thick architectural aluminum housing, our DI boxes are virtually indestructable.

Frequency Response 20 Hz to 20 kHz (+/- 1 dB)
Noise (shorted input): 0.63 uVrms (-122 dBVrms)
Distortion (1 Vpp in):

THD (1 kHz): < 0.018%

IMD (10 kHz/60 Hz, 4:1): < 0.08%

Power Options:

48 V Phantom (0.4 mA)

9 V Battery (400 hours on a typical alkaline)

Input Protection: 220 Vrms and 20,000 V static discharges
Voltage Gain:

Pickup mode: -10 dB

Speaker mode: -46 dB

RF Filtering:

Input: 250 kHz low-pass filter

Output: 30 kHz low-pass filter

Maximum Input Level (1% THD):

Pickup mode: 5 Vpp

Speaker mode: 300 Vpp

(Equal to 2,800 Watts into 4 Ohms)

Input Resistance:

Pickup mode: 10 MOhm (10 times the input impedance of a typical guitar amplifier)

Input Capacitance: 160 pF (equal to 2 ft of low-capacitance guitar cable)
Dimensions: 5" x 3" x 1.75" (127 mm x 77 mm x 45 mm)
Weight: 18.5 oz (0.52 kg)

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I hook it up to the Type 85?

All signal sources must go to the “INST.” jack because inserting a plug into the “INST” jack turns the TYPE 85 on. The “AMP.” jack is simply connected in parallel with the “INST” jack but it does not operate the power switch.

These are the most typical ways to connect to the Type 85:

How do I use the “PICKUP-SPEAKER” switch?

Use the “SPEAKER” position when the TYPE 85 is connected to the speaker output of an amplifier and the “PICKUP” for all other sources including preamp outputs.