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IK Multimedia Z-TONE Buffer Boost - Tone Shaping Guitar Pedal with DI

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Guitar and bass pedalboards are all about exploring new tones and textures, creating a wide range of sound for your instrument. Z-TONE® Buffer Boost takes your live rig to a new level, letting you shape the sound of your instrument with the input circuits from our award-winning AXE I/O interfa... Read More

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Guitar and bass pedalboards are all about exploring new tones and textures, creating a wide range of sound for your instrument. Z-TONE® Buffer Boost takes your live rig to a new level, letting you shape the sound of your instrument with the input circuits from our award-winning
AXE I/O interface.

Change the tone and feel of your guitar or bass, buffer your tone to survive even the biggest pedalboard, kick in the boost and supercharge all your existing gear with a powerful new front-end.


  • Active/Passive pickup selector
  • PURE channel for transparent sound
  • JFET channel adds warmth and harmonics 
  • Z-TONE variable impedance control creates
    a wide range of tones
  • Buffers signal for longer pedalboards and cable runs
  • Boost circuit adds volume and drive
  • Alternate outs for mixers and PAs
  • Ground lift switch eliminates buzz and hum
  • Designed and made in Italy

The ideal front-end

Z-TONE Buffer Boost offers a high-quality instrument preamp with exceptionally low noise and wide frequency response, and multiple circuit topologies to adapt to any type of guitar, pick-up and style.

Pick your pickup:
PASSIVE: designed to accommodate everything from low-output vintage pickups to hotter modern humbuckers with ultra-low noise and extended frequency response.

ACTIVE: bypasses unnecessary gain stages when using active pick-ups, to keep your signal path as direct, transparent and clean as possible.

Choose your channel:
PURE: a completely transparent and ultra-accurate preamp circuit that won’t color your sound in any way.

JFET: a Class A JFET input buffer for subtle harmonic enhancement, midrange focus and warmth.

Tone and feel like you’ve never heard
Guitar pickups can dramatically change their character depending on impedance - many amps offer a load of 1 MOhms, while pedals can run much lower. That’s why the tone and responsiveness of your guitar can change when plugging into different gear.

Z-TONE Buffer Boost gives you the same variable impedance control as our groundbreaking
AXE I/O audio interface, from 1 MOhm to 2.2 kOhms. At the maximum impedance, you’ll find your sound tighter, sharper and more precise. Increase the load and the sound becomes thicker and more bold.

You can use this control to coax a wider range of sounds from a single guitar, experiment with how the rest of your rig reacts to these changes, or dial in exactly the right vibe regardless of what comes next in your chain.

Kick it up a notch
Use Z-TONE Buffer Boost to supercharge your sound. The included Boost circuit offers adjustable gain to increase volume and drive, hitting your amp or pedals harder.

Always sound your best
Long cable runs, low-impedance stomps and complex routing can degrade your guitar’s signal, causing muffled, bassy or lifeless tone. To ensure your signal always stays crystal-clear, Z-TONE Buffer Boost offers a transparent output buffer so you always sound your best.

And Z-TONE Buffer Boost offers a true bypass circuit, so it’s completely transparent when not in use.

More ways to connect
In addition to the “Link” amp and pedal output, Z-TONE Buffer Boost offers a balanced XLR output to connect to mixers and PAs. Skip the amp and perform direct, or mix clean and processed signals to create even more tonal options.

A switchable ground lift eliminates noise and hum caused by ground loops, and an unbalanced ¼” output offers additional flexibility. Now you’re ready to connect in any situation.

And Z-TONE Buffer Boost runs on a standard 9V battery, +48v phantom power from your mixer or 9V pedal power supply, so it’s easy to drop onto your existing pedalboard.

Improve your guitar track forever
In the studio, Z-TONE Buffer Boost also lets you record like the pros. Connect the balanced out to your audio interface and mic up your amp – now you can simultaneously record both your amp tone as well as a second DI guitar track. Now you can process and fine-tune at will with the included AmpliTube 5 SE – all without recording endless takes.

Includes AmpliTube 5 SE
Z-TONE Buffer Boost comes with AmpliTube 5 SE, the hyper-realistic guitar and bass tone studio for Mac/PC that includes 77 models of must-have gear.

You can easily expand your sonic collection with IK’s range of additional amp and effect models – there are over 400 pieces to choose from, including officially licensed re-creations of gear from Fender®, Orange®, Mesa-Boogie® and other iconic gear manufacturers, as well as guitar legends like Slash, Joe Satriani, Jimi Hendrix and Dimebag Darrell, all available a la carte.

Your guitar’s golden channel
Want to add killer Z-TONE tone shaping to all your gear? Check out Z-TONE DI offering the same killer features in a convenient direct box for studio and stage use.

Or check out AXE I/O and AXE I/O SOLO, IK’s range of premium audio interfaces offering the same great tone-shaping features, and find out just how easy creating best-in-class guitar recordings can be.

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Product Specs

I/O Gain Unitary, from 1/4” input JACK to both 1/4” and XLR outputs when GAIN is at 0dB and Z-TONE at the SHARP position.
Gain Range From -8dB to +8dB
Boost range From 0dB to +10dB
Input impedance - Z-TONE set on PASSIVE mode Variable from 1MΩ down to 2.2kΩ
Input impedance - Z-TONE set on ACTIVE mode Approx 20kΩ
Output impedance, unbalanced out 56Ω
Output impedance, balanced out 600Ω
Max input level before clipping +13dBm when powered by 48V phantom,+9dBm when powered by 9V battery
Dynamic Range better than 114dB(A) for both outputs, input gain at 0dB
Total Harmonic Distortion, balanced output, 1kHz, +4dBm input 0.0033% (PURE), 0.2% (JFET)
Total Harmonic Distortion, unbalanced output, 1kHz, +4dBm input 0.00055% (PURE), 0.2% (JFET)
Frequency response from 5Hz to 30kHz -1dB
Phase deviation 0° +/-10° from 20Hz to 20kHz
Power Phantom power: +48V phantom on Balanced output.
Battery power: 9V
External DC power: 9VDC, positive outside - not included
Current consumption from P48 phantom power source: 6.5mA
Size 10.8cm/4.25" x 12cm/4.72" x 5.8cm/2.28"
Weight 600g/21.2oz
Package includes Z-TONE Buffer Boost unit

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