Scholz Prototype Power Soak #2

This is one of 3 Prototype Power Soaks built and used by Tom Scholz of Boston from around 1975-1980.  This is the first one made and was used extensively by Tom both touring and in the studio. It is marked "Main Soak" and was the last, most extensive version that Tom had built.  It has 4 knobs instead of 2 controlling both Level and Preamp. These Attenuators feature massive rheostats and are made to work with 2 heads at the same time. They are built into old Marshall head cabinets.  They also have a switching system to switch between the 2 sides.  All the connections and instructions are hand written on the units by Tom. 

Barry showed me these in early December, 2017 and I knew exactly what they were.  He said....

"The day I bought this Marshall amp I took it over Tom's we plugged it in. We had it on 2 and we were not impressed to say the least. So we turn it up to 4.  Sounds better but it's getting loud.  Then up to 11.  Sounded unreal but it was killing us it was so loud.  So that's what led Tom to build these power attenuators".....  

Most of you will remember the highly successful Scholz Power Soak from the 80's. Well that all started with Barry's 1970 Super Tremolo 100 and these Prototype attenuators.

These have been sitting in Barry's studio for almost 38 years.  He has not used them but they worked last time he did.  We are advising to use these at your own risk and are selling them as non-functioning without warranty.  Neither Boston Guitar, Barry Goodreau, Tom Scholz, or assume any liability from the usage of this item.

What you are buying is a piece of rock history. A tool that helped shape the sound of one of the most successful rock bands of the last 50 years.  In the case of Tom Scholz, an engineer who went to M.I.T., someone who is a well known perfectionist, his legacy will not be about only music.  It's also about invention, technology, and innovation. This prototype led to the creation of SR&D which went on to sell thousands of guitar related products and revolutionized the Musical Instrument industry with the Rockman.  The rest is history :)

This item will include a letter from Barry Goudreau confirming it's authenticity.  The unit will be professionally packed and shipped fully insured by Boston Guitar.

The Power Soak was the first commercial product by Tom Scholz and Scholz Research & Development. .
Though the Power Soak was not the first power attenuation device for guitar amps, it was the first to be 100% reliable, the first to respect the sound of the amp. Most of all, it was one of the first to include a volume control.
Tom Scholz had recorded the first two Boston albums with these big, 100 watt Marshall stacks, cranked up to 11. Since he's a clever man and knew that his ears are precious for a musician, he designed the Power Soak as a "Volume Control Device", as defined by the US patents 4,143,245, D256,798, 4,363,934 and D270,153. The Power-Soak not only attenuates the power of your amp: it allows a precise control over the global volume of your set-up. In other terms, tweak your sound first, then adjust your volume.
The personal prototypes used by Scholz from 1975 (?) till 1980 allowed the new-born company SR&D to issue its first product, the Power-Soak, in the end of 1980. The first commercial ads appeared in 1981, and were rather product oriented: the Power-Soak is a tool, not a toy, and it really solves a problem for the guitarist.
These are those Prototypes. 
Discontinued in 1982 when the Rockman headphones amp was created, the Power-Soak was re-issued in 1992 as a PS-III model.
How many Power-Soaks were built? Around 10,000
The sound of Boston's debut album is still, 30 years later, sort of a mystery. Most of the tricks are public now, but this sound will never be duplicated. Or, as someone said.... It was duplicated once: on Boston's second album :)
Some info from and Jark Bordeaux - France


This item is sold As-Described

This item is sold As-Described and cannot be returned unless it arrives in a condition different from how it was described or photographed. Items must be returned in original, as-shipped condition with all original packaging.Learn More.

Listed5 years ago
ConditionNon Functioning (Used)
Non-functioning items do not work as they should. All known issues should be described in the listing description.learn more
  • Prototype Power Soak #2
  • 1976
Made In
  • United States

Boston Guitar

West Bridgewater, MA, United States
Joined Reverb:2013

Reverb Gives

Your purchases help youth music programs get the gear they need to make music.

Carbon-Offset Shipping

Your purchases also help protect forests, including trees traditionally used to make instruments.

Oops, looks like you forgot something. Please check the fields highlighted in red.