Gear en Big Boss Giveaway: Win Autographed Boss Pedals Every Week Through December — Video <!--paging_filter--><p>It’s time for the annual Big BOSS Giveaway! Each week, one lucky winner will be drawn at random to receive a BOSS pedal autographed by a famous musical artist. But that’s not all—every submission received is also entered for a chance at the Grand Prize of $1,000 in BOSS gear.</p> <p>The entry period runs from November 16, 2015, through December 20, 2015. Follow BOSS U.S. on <a href="" target="_blank">Twitter</a> and visit the contest page at <a href="" target="_blank"></a> to enter for your chance to win.</p> <p><strong>Weekly BOSS Pedal Giveaways</strong></p> <p>One entry is accepted per person during the entire contest period, and prizes are divided up as follows:</p> <p>• Entries received from November 16, 2015 through November 22, 2015: one DS-1 Distortion pedal autographed by the members of Bring Me The Horizon.<br /> • Entries received from November 23, 2015 through November 29, 2015: one DM-2W Delay pedal autographed by John 5.<br /> • Entries received from November 30, 2015 through December 6, 2015: one DD-3 Digital Delay pedal autographed by Gus G.<br /> • Entries received from December 7, 2015 through December 13, 2015: one DD-7 Digital Delay pedal autographed by Steve Vai.<br /> • Entries received from December 14, 2015 through December 20, 2015: one OD-1X Overdrive pedal autographed by Vic Fuentes and Tony Perry of Pierce the Veil.</p> <p><strong>Big BOSS Giveaway: Grand Prize</strong></p> <p> Every entry received from November 16, 2015, through December 20, 2015 will be entered into a random drawing for one Grand Prize of $1,000 (suggested retail price) in BOSS gear.</p> <p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Visit the 2015 Big BOSS Giveaway contest page for entry info and official rules. Good luck!</a></strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> Boss Videos Effects News Gear Wed, 25 Nov 2015 14:02:21 +0000 Guitar World Staff 25889 at Mike Dawes Demos and Discusses DiMarzio's The Black Angel Acoustic Guitar Pickup — Video <!--paging_filter--><p>In this new video, guitarist Mike Dawes demos and discusses DiMarzio's The Black Angel acoustic soundhole pickup.</p> <p>"The Black Angel comes elegantly packaged with everything you’ll need to mount the pickup quickly or permanently install it," writes Paul Riario in the November 2015 issue of <em>Guitar World.</em></p> <p>"The quick mount 1/8-inch to 1/4-inch ten-foot cable plugs directly into the Black Angel pickup and from there into your amp or a direct box. Installation couldn’t be easier, with a small Phillips-head screwdriver and a few minutes of your time, the pickup easily slides into your acoustic’s soundhole, and the two outer screws with padded mounts underneath secure it into place. The included install version comes with a 1/8-inch to 1/4-inch Switchcraft endpin jack.</p> <p>"The Black Angel is a passive magnetic humbucking pickup, but don’t be afraid that it’ll behave like a DiMarzio Super Distortion humbucker. Its Rare Earth humbucking magnet responds quietly, and is remarkably touch sensitive. I found that I actually had to turn up my acoustic amp and goose the gain in order to hear the full range of the pickup’s abundant capability."</p> <p><strong>For more about The Black Angel, visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a> For more about Dawes, visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a></strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> Acoustic Nation DiMarzio Mike Dawes News Acoustic Guitars Videos Blogs Videos News Gear Tue, 24 Nov 2015 19:38:03 +0000 Guitar World Staff 25880 at Review: Boss Waza Craft BD-2W, DM-2W, and SD-1W Pedals — Video <!--paging_filter--><p><strong><em>PLATINUM AWARD</em></strong></p> <p>There are many very good reasons why Boss pedals have remained mainstays of countless pro guitarists’ pedalboards. </p> <p>Boss compact pedals are built like tanks, exceptionally durable and reliable, and readily available from most retailers should one ever need to be replaced, plus they sound pretty damn good. These are the qualities that have made Boss compact pedals some of the most popular products for pro and aspiring guitarists alike for nearly four decades.</p> <p> However, the boutique pedal phenomenon has bred a new variety of discriminating tone connoisseur (a.k.a. the cork sniffer) that demands a certain level of refinement that few mass-produced products can match. </p> <p>Then there is the cottage industry of techs who make good money modifying and customizing Boss pedals to improve and even hot-rod those effects’ performance. In their own pursuit of tonal perfection, Boss has introduced its new Waza Craft series compact pedals that offer refined circuits, all-analog components, and new customized features to offer performance that goes beyond their usual standards of excellence.</p> <p><strong>FEATURES</strong></p> <p>So what’s a Waza? It’s not what a sushi chef yells when he wants you to buy him a Bud, nor is it a rogue syndicate of the Yakuza. It’s a word that has no direct English translation, but rather has many meanings, including “skill” and “technique.” All you need to know is that the Waza Craft series currently consists of three impressive pedals—the BD-2W Blues Driver, DM-2W Delay, and SD-1W Super Overdrive.</p> <p> While the standard BD-2 and SD-1 pedals have been mainstays of the Boss line for a few decades now (since 1995 and 1981, respectively), the biggest news is the return of the coveted DM-2 analog delay, which was produced only between 1981 and 1984. The BD-2W and SD-1W also look almost identical to their standard counterparts, having the same triangular configuration of level, tone, and drive/gain controls and mono input and output jacks. The DM-2W also has the same controls as its predecessor (repeat rate, echo, and intensity), but it provides a ¼-inch rate jack for controlling delay time with an optional expression pedal and a direct output in addition to the input and output jacks of the original version.</p> <p> A mini toggle switch located below the Check LED is the secret weapon that unleashes the Waza Craft pedals’ inscrutable magic. In the “S” (standard) position the pedal performs like the regular, classic version of the pedal (albeit with a few sonic improvements), while the “C” position engages a customized circuit. The “C” mode increases sustain and body on the BD-2W, boosts gain and expands tonal range on the SD-1W, and increase the maximum delay time of the DM-2W from 300ms to 800ms.</p> <p><strong>PERFORMANCE</strong></p> <p>Both the BD-2W and SD-1W feature circuitry that consists entirely of discrete components (in other words, no op amps). As a result the tone of both is much more organic, dynamic, and responsive. This is particularly noticeable in standard mode, where the pedals have the same basic tonal personality of their classic counterparts but have an entirely different feel that responds to every nuance of your playing. </p> <p>Both pedals provide outstanding clean boost functions with the level control cranked up and the gain/drive control turned all the way down, with the SD-1W providing a greater range of midrange textures via its tone control. The BD-2W’s tone control has a less dramatic effect on the overall tone, maintaining more of your guitar’s inherent character. With the gain/drive control turned up, both deliver luscious, harmonically rich distortion with silky smooth sustain, particularly in the stellar custom mode, which pushes the front end even harder without ever sounding fuzzy or gritty.</p> <p> As for the DM-2W, if you’re an analog delay fan, buy it now. This pedal delivers the warm, fat delay effects and hypnotic true echo sounds that dreams are made of in delay times ranging from 20-300ms in standard mode and up to 800ms in custom mode. The custom mode adds a touch more clarity that’s perfect for the “Cathedral” and the Edge-style echo trick with warmth that sounds like a second guitar instead of an effect. Crank up the intensity and play with the repeat rate control to summon trippy dub echoes or generate a variety of spaceship and buzzsaw noises.</p> <p><strong>STREET PRICES</strong> $149 each<br /> <strong>MANUFACTURER</strong> Roland Corporation, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>• The mini S/C toggle switch selects a standard mode that sounds like the regular version of the pedals or a custom mode that greatly expands sonic versatility and performance.</p> <p>• The DM-2W adds a rate jack for controlling delay time with an optional expression pedal and a direct output to the classic DM-2 analog delay’s design.</p> <p>• The DM-2W’s custom mode increases the delay time to 800ms, a full 500ms more than the standard mode’s 300ms maximum delay time.</p> <p>• All three pedals feature all-analog circuitry that’s designed to provide improved dynamic responsiveness and more natural overall tone.</p> <p><strong>BOTTOM LINE</strong> If you love the rock-solid reliability of a Boss compact pedal but are also a discriminating tone connoisseur who can’t live without the refined performance of a hot-rodded boutique stomp box, the Boss Waza Craft line offers the best of both worlds.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> Boss Holiday 2015 Videos Effects Gear Magazine Mon, 23 Nov 2015 16:14:57 +0000 Chris Gill, Video by Paul Riario 25771 at PRS Guitars Unveils SE 277 Semi-Hollow Soapbar and SE 277 Baritones <!--paging_filter--><p>PRS Guitars recently added two new baritone guitars, the new SE 277 Semi Hollow Soapbar and the SE 277, to its bevy of more affordable guitar model options. </p> <p>Tuned B to B, two and a half steps below standard, the two new baritones offer a taut muscular low end, with powerful aggressive tones and flexibility of going from chimey clean, to warm depth, to articulate tonal hostility.</p> <p>Named for its baritone 27.7” scale length neck, the SE 277 Semi Hollow Soapbar takes the traditional mahogany back, maple top platform to new territories with its chambered back, f-hole, and dual soapbar pickup configuration. The semi-hollow body provides increased acoustic resonance and clarity while the soapbars deliver a balance of transparent, uncompressed clean tones and thick growl.</p> <p>For guitarists who are comfortable with more traditional appointments, PRS has introduced the SE 277, which features the same 27.7” baritone scale length as its semi-hollow brother but with a solid body and PRS SE dual humbucking pickups. The SE 277 covers the spectrum of sound from sparkling highs, to surf-rock jangle, to heavy down-tuned aggression.</p> <p>Baritone guitars are known to hold a unique position in the mix. When asked to describe the sweet spot where these baritones reside, PRS demonstrator Bryan Ewald responded, “These two baritone guitars land somewhere in between the bass and guitar registers. Guitarists can play them to add a different sound to the mix and to fatten up rhythm tracks. Bass players can use them to create texture and tonal tenacity.”</p> <p>“These guitars are a perfect fit for everything from country to surf rock to metal,” Rich Hannon, PRS Artist Relations. “They are comfortable to play with a shred-worthy feel and handle alternate tunings like a beast.”</p> <p>Additional specifications for both the SE 277 Semi Hollow Soapbar and SE277 include a beveled maple top with flame maple veneer, mahogany back, 22-fret maple neck with rosewood fingerboard with bird inlays, PRS-designed plate-style bridge, PRS-designed tuners, volume and tone with a 3-way toggle pickup switch.</p> <p><strong>For more information, visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</strong></p> PRS Guitars Electric Guitars News Gear Sun, 22 Nov 2015 19:25:29 +0000 Guitar World Staff 25869 at Seymour Duncan Launches Four- and Five-String Apollo Jazz Bass Linear Humbucker Pickups <!--paging_filter--><p>Designed by Kevin Beller, bass player and Seymour Duncan head of R&amp;D, the Apollo Jazz Bass Linear Humbucker utilizes two coils that sit next to each other under a standard single coil-sized cover. </p> <p>We start with the tone of a traditional single coil Jazz Bass pickup, the full-sounding warmth of the neck pickup and the balanced smoothness of the bridge pickup. Then we add a little extra punch and detail in the bridge position. </p> <p>Beller writes: </p> <p>"I've been playing bass since the mid-Seventies and I've spent most of my career as a bass player playing Fender-style basses. I really fell in love with them. I'm very much attached to the traditional Fender sound, and found the Apollo Jazz Bass Linear Humbuckers were a way where I could modernize my instrument but still maintain the traditional tone and get rid of the problems of hum, noise and environmental sounds that are all to common today. </p> <p>"We've also addressed the issue of string to string balance. On Jazz Basses the balance will be off, especially on the higher strings. As you play across the neck from the E and A strings and then cross to D and G the output typically drops, sometimes even on the A string. We did a little bit of fattening on the bridge pickup, staying really close to the traditional tonality but addressing some performance issues."</p> <p>The Apollo Jazz Bass is available in bridge and neck models for four- and five-string, with two size options for the 5-string (67/70mm or 70/74mm). They can be purchased in matched sets or individually. All models offer better string-to-string balance than traditional Jazz Bass single coils, and are completely noiseless. They are extremely versatile and can be used for just about any musical style. </p> <p>Hand built in Santa Barbara, California, Apollo Jazz Bass pickups use hand ground Alnico 5 rod magnets and Forbon flatwork, and are vacuum wax potted for squeal-free performance.</p> <p><strong>TECH SPECS</strong></p> <p>4-STRING NECK | MAGNETS: ALNICO 5 ROD | DC RESISTANCE: 8.79K</p> <p>4-STRING BRIDGE | MAGNETS: ALNICO 5 ROD | DC RESISTANCE: 9.25K</p> <p>5-STRING NECK | MAGNETS: ALNICO 5 ROD | DC RESISTANCE: 9.58K</p> <p>5-STRING BRIDGE | MAGNETS: ALNICO 5 ROD | DC RESISTANCE: 11.1K</p> <p><strong>For more information, visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a></strong></p> Seymour Duncan Bass Guitars News Gear Sun, 22 Nov 2015 19:15:56 +0000 Guitar World Staff 25868 at Weird Science: The 10 Strangest Vintage Effects of All Time <!--paging_filter--><p>It’s probably not a coincidence that effects such as wah pedals and fuzz boxes started appearing en masse about the same time that recreational drugs like marijuana and LSD became popular with rock musicians. </p> <p>Indeed, it would take the mind of an incredibly stoned individual—someone deprived of exposure to the sun’s rays, fed a diet of lukewarm Mountain Dew and stale frozen pizza and kept awake for days by snorting lines of Instant Maxwell House—to even conceive of the idea for some of the music industry’s many audio oddities. </p> <p>In salute to effect innovators like Electro-Harmonix’s Mike Matthews and Zachary Vex of Z.Vex (both of whom might be as straight and unpolluted as an Iowa highway, for all we know), we present to you our selections for the strangest and most wonderful guitar effects ever unleashed upon the unsuspecting public. </p> <p>Plugging into one of the following effects is like discovering an ancient Mayan city of gold on the tip of your fingernail while your cat pontificates, in Lebanese, about Proust. Or whacking yourself in the head really hard with a sledgehammer. </p> <p>To find out more about these pedals (and hear more audio examples), check out <a href="" target="_blank">Discofreq’s FX Site</a> or <a href="" target="_blank"></a>. If you’d like to take a crack at building your own, visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a>. </p> <p>Note that, since it's unusual to come across two or three of these effects, let alone all 10, we do not have consistent photos or videos of the effects presented below. Luckily, there's this thing called We tried to find the most to-the-point and least-annoying video for each effect. (We admit we really love the video for Number 5, the Maestro Rover!)</p> <p>Enjoy!</p> <div style="padding:10px;background:#eeeeee;margin:10px 0;"> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;margin-bottom:20px;">01. Ludwig Phase II synthesizer</span> <p>What could possibly be weirder than a guitar synthesizer pedal made in the early Seventies by a drum company? Like many so-called guitar synthesizers from this era, the Ludwig Phase II is not a synth but actually several effects, including fuzz, voltage-controlled filters and gating, combined in a box that unfolds to reveal a rocker pedal, several oversized mushroom-shaped footswitches and a control panel placed at a height only Verne Troyer would find comfortable. </p> <p>With a little patient tweaking, the Phase II can produce the sound of anything from alien conversations to spaceship landings—the kind of weirdness that’s made it a favorite of Sonic Youth (<em>Washing Machine</em>), Primus’ Larry Lalonde (<em>Pork Soda</em>) and Pearl Jam’s Mike McCready (<em>Binaural</em>).</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p></div> <div style="padding:10px;background:#eeeeee;margin:10px 0;"> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">02. Ampeg Scrambler</span> <p>Ampeg is best known for its big ’n’ beefy bass amps, but the company also attempted to exploit the pedal market in a few rare instances. Ampeg’s first effort, the Scrambler, bewildered even acid casualties upon its introduction in 1969, but today’s bizarro stomp box aficionados consider it the Holy Grail. Although these pedals are rarer than Paris Hilton’s brain cells, they were built to withstand nuclear war, so units that turn up are usually in fine working condition. Its two controls (texture and balance) generate a mutated rainbow of fuzz tones ranging from metallic ring modulation with buzzing octave-up overtones to the flatulence of a 400-pound chili cook-off judge.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p></div> <div style="padding:10px;background:#eeeeee;margin:10px 0;"> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">03. DeArmond Tremolo Control</span> <p>Tremolo effects aren’t particularly strange, but this early Fifties contraption, the first mass-produced external effect device for the electric guitar, earns distinction for its primitive design and clunky aesthetics. (And it was manufactured in Toledo, Ohio—isn’t that weird?) Instead of employing components like transistors, resistors and diodes to generate its on/off effect, the Tremolo Control used a motor to rock a glass tube filled with mercury (the original heavy metal) back and forth across an electrical contact to open and close the circuit. Unfortunately, mercury deteriorates over time, but Windex makes a safe alternative (and it provides “clean” tone). This effect is a favorite of Billy Gibbons, Ry Cooder and Duane Eddy.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p></div> <div style="padding:10px;background:#eeeeee;margin:10px 0;"> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">04. EMS Synthi Hi-Fli</span> <p>Another so-called guitar synthesizer from the Seventies, the EMS Synthi Hi-Fli was mounted on a waist-high stand and looked like a prop from <em>Dr. Who</em> (EMS actually made the synths used to create sound effects for the show). Originally (and appropriately) called the Sound Freak, the Hi-Fli was essentially an early multi-effect unit that combined fuzz, octave shift, ring modulation, phasing and resonant filters to generate synthlike tones. David Gilmour used a Synthi Hi-Fli on <em>The Dark Side of the Moon</em>, and other fans include Steve Hackett (when he was with Genesis) and the Chemical Brothers.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p></div> <div style="padding:10px;background:#eeeeee;margin:10px 0;"> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">05. Maestro Rover</span> <p>Someone must have spiked the water coolers at Maestro with Blue Sunshine—how else to explain sonic oddities like Maestro’s Bass Brassmaster, Filter Sample and Hold, Ring Modulator and the world’s first fuzz box? The Maestro Rover is a rotating speaker unit that not only looks like a UFO but sounds like one, too, as the speaker can rotate at exceptionally high speeds to create watery, warbling Doppler effects. A built-in crossover routes low frequencies to a guitar amp while it directs treble frequencies to the Rover’s rather low-powered internal amp, which isn’t loud enough to irk even a Ladies’ Auxiliary tea party. That’s why David Gilmour’s Rover is, uh, house trained.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p></div> <div style="padding:10px;background:#eeeeee;margin:10px 0;"> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">06. Electro-Harmonix Frequency Analyzer/Maestro Ring Modulator</span> <p>You know those bizarre, dissonant metallic boinks on ZZ Top’s “Cheap Sunglasses” and the closing theme of <em>South Park</em>? That’s the sound of a ring modulator. Electro-Harmonix and Maestro unleashed this atonal beast of an effect on unsuspecting musicians during the early Seventies, and guitarists have been struggling to tame them ever since. By moving the controls while you play (the EHX Hotfoot makes a handy “third hand”), you can imitate the sounds of extraterrestrial radio transmissions, drunken calypso steel drummers and screaming robot elephants. Who hasn’t wanted their guitar to sound like that?</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p></div> <div style="padding:10px;background:#eeeeee;margin:10px 0;"> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">07. ADA Flanger</span> <p>One of the finest pedal flangers ever made, the ADA Flanger generates a wide variety of impressive effects, from jetlike whooshes to shimmering chorus. But spend a little extra time tweaking the controls and some truly bizarre sounds emerge, such as ring modulator–like percussive metal overtones and ghostly moans. Its best (i.e., weirdest) effect is a sort of “auto whammy” that is coaxed out of the pedal by turning the enhance control all the way up. Engage the effect and your guitar’s pitch will rise and fall dramatically and uncontrollably, even if you aren’t playing anything at all. How cool is that?</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> </p></div> <div style="padding:10px;background:#eeeeee;margin:10px 0;"> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">08. Roland Funny Cat</span> <p>Perhaps the most appropriately named pedal of all time, the Roland Funny Cat sounds like a feline that has huffed a spray can of Rust-Oleum and downed a bottle of Jäger—and is being whipped. Kind of a fuzz/envelope-follower combination, the Funny Cat spews and mews unpredictably, with the effect often becoming more pronounced the softer, or the higher up the neck, you play. Considering how hard it was to get killer buds (an essential part of good pedal design) in Japan during the early Seventies, the Roland engineer who designed this probably smoked a lot of catnip instead.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p></div> <div style="padding:10px;background:#eeeeee;margin:10px 0;"> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">09. Oberheim Voltage Controlled Filter/Maestro Filter Sample and Hold</span> <p>These pedals are identical in every way except for their paint jobs. Controls consist of knobs for range (depth) and sample-and-hold speed, and a switch that engages either the sample-and-hold random-filter effect or an envelope follower, for autowah effects. Even with this limited feature set, the pedals can generate a surprisingly vast palette of strange but wonderful tones, ranging from juicy, drippy envelope-follower funk to guttural auto-arpeggiator stutters. Frank Zappa used one on “Ship Ahoy,” “Black Napkins” and several other songs, so if it’s weird enough for the man who wrote “Poofter’s Froth Wyoming Plans Ahead,” it’s certainly weird enough for you.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p></div> <div style="padding:10px;background:#eeeeee;margin:10px 0;"> <span style="font-size:18px;font-weight:bold;">10. Electro-Harmonix Talking Pedal </span> <p>While honorable mention must be made to the Heil Talk Box (which provides guitarists with a tube that they stick in their mouths to duplicate the sound of a stomach being pumped and other barfy delights), the Electro-Harmonix Talking Pedal enables your guitar to speak through purely electronic means. Actually, it only produces “A-E-I-O-U” vowel sounds, but it does give a guitar an uncanny vocal-like tonality that is reminiscent of Yoda speaking Cantonese. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p></div> GW Archive Guitar World Lists Videos Effects News Features Gear Magazine Fri, 20 Nov 2015 15:07:08 +0000 Chris Gill 17446 at Fender Custom Shop Introduces Mike Campbell “Heartbreaker” Telecaster — Video <!--paging_filter--><p>The Fender Custom Shop is proud to introduce the Mike Campbell Limited Edition "Heartbreaker" Guitar. </p> <p>Meticulously reproduced by the team of Dream Makers at the Custom Shop, led by Master Builder Dale Wilson, this guitar is nearly indistinguishable from the original. </p> <p>The guitar will provide players with Campbell’s years of loving use to experience for their own. From the nail scratch on the front of the lower horn to the soldering iron burn near the output jack and chipped nut, this guitar is visually and sonically comparable to Campbell's trusty companion. This historic collectible is available in extremely limited quantities, and each will include a small number of Campbell's personal guitar picks. </p> <p>In addition to the release of the guitar, artist funds from the limited edition reproduction will go to Tazzy Animal Rescue Fund, a nonprofit organization that's close to Campbell and his wife. The organization operates as a fullyfunctioning animal rescue and works to provide homes for those animals in need. </p> <p>"It's a notable cause and if you want to buy one of these guitars not only do you get a great guitar, but you are literally saving lives of dogs," Campbell said. </p> <p><strong>For more information on the animal rescue organization and Fender Custom Shop, visit <a href=""></a> and <a href=""></a></strong></p> <p><img src="/files/imce-images/Mike%20Campbell%20Heartbreaker%20Guitar.jpg" width="620" height="213" alt="Mike Campbell Heartbreaker Guitar.jpg" /></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> Fender Fender Custom Shop FMIC Specialty Brands Mike Campbell Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers Videos Electric Guitars News Gear Thu, 19 Nov 2015 21:58:55 +0000 Guitar World Staff 25866 at Electro-Harmonix Unveils Crayon Full-Range Overdrive Pedal — Demo Video <!--paging_filter--><p>The Crayon is a versatile overdrive with independent Bass and Treble controls and an open frequency range that provides players with a musical alternative to customary mid-focused overdrive pedals. </p> <p>Housed in a compact, pedalboard-ready enclosure, the Crayon delivers a range of sounds going from a suggestion of dirt to full-on distortion.</p> <p>EHX Founder and President Mike Matthews describes The Crayon as “lush and rich, with a warm tone,” and the pedal is equally adept when used by itself or when driving another overdrive pedal. In both cases, the Crayon’s full-range produces an articulate and musically pleasing result.</p> <p>In addition to the Bass and Treble controls, the Crayon features a Gain knob, which adjusts the amount of input gain and a Volume knob to set the pedal’s output level. The footswitch selects whether the Crayon is engaged or in true-bypass mode.</p> <p>The pedal ships with a 9V battery and can use an optional 9VDC AC adapter such as the EHX 9.6DC-200 power supply. It is available now at a U.S. list price of $83.63.</p> <p><strong>For more information on this pedal, visit its page at <a href="" target="_blank"></a></strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> EHX Electro-Harmonix Videos Effects News Gear Thu, 19 Nov 2015 20:25:07 +0000 Guitar World Staff 25865 at Review: Epiphone Masterbilt AJ-45ME Acoustic/Electric Guitar — Video <!--paging_filter--><p><strong><em>GOLD AWARD</em></strong></p> <p>The J-45 is one of the most successful and popular flattop guitar models of all-time. </p> <p>From its introduction in 1942 through the Seventies, the J-45 was known as a “workhorse” guitar due to its affordable price and reliable performance, but as time progressed both vintage and new models, which are still produced today, became too expensive for the everyday working guitarist. </p> <p>Epiphone’s new Masterbilt AJ-45ME brings the price of this beloved slope-shouldered dreadnought model back down to earth without compromising the quality, playability, and tone that have made the J-45 a favorite of both pros (like Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, and Jeff Tweedy) and average Joes alike.</p> <p><strong>FEATURES</strong></p> <p>The basic features and construction of the Masterbilt AJ-45ME are identical to those of the classic J-45, including the solid Sitka spruce top, solid mahogany back and sides, mahogany neck with 24.75-inch scale length, rosewood fretboard with 20 medium frets and pearloid dot inlays, and 16-inch wide slope-shouldered dreadnought body. </p> <p>Vintage-style appointments include five-ply body binding, Grover Sta-Tite 18:1 tuners with nickel-plated butterbean buttons, and the “reverse belly” rosewood pin bridge. The Masterbilt also offers a few modern improvements, such as its SlimTaper D-shaped neck profile, compensated saddle, satin finish, and built-in electronics, which consist of a Shadow NanoFlex under-saddle pickup and Shadow Sonic Soundhole controls. </p> <p><strong>PERFORMANCE</strong></p> <p>The Masterbilt AJ-45ME’s natural acoustic tone is rich, warm, and vibrant with similar personality to coveted vintage J-45 examples. While the J-45 is technically a dreadnought, its sound is much more balanced and bigger than what is generally accepted as the norm for dreadnought tone. The midrange is more predominant, the bass more focused, and the treble more bell-like and less “zingy.” The tone is also quite impressively complex for a guitar in this price range, with reverb-like resonance, smooth sustain, and assertive attack. As a result the AJ-45ME is a very versatile guitar that equally suited both for aggressively strummed rhythm playing and more nuanced fingerstyle performances.</p> <p> The built-in Shadow pickup and electronics also perform well beyond the systems typically offered in the AJ-45ME’s price range. Acoustic purists will appreciate how the controls are hidden from view inside the soundhole, but they’ll especially love how warm and natural it sounds during occasions when an amplified boost is necessary. The bass and treble EQ controls, anti-feedback phase switch, and master volume controls provide players with the essentials literally at their fingertips.</p> <p><strong>LIST PRICE</strong> $999<br /> <strong>MANUFACTURER</strong> Epiphone, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>• The solid Sitka spruce top, solid mahogany back and sides, and mahogany neck with 24.75-inch scale are all faithful to the original classic J-45 design.</p> <p>• Built-in Shadow electronics consisting of an under-saddle NanoFlex pickup and sound hole–mounted controls provides warm, natural amplified tone.</p> <p><strong>THE BOTTOM LINE:</strong> Although the original “workhorse” J-45 has become a pricey object of desire, Epiphone’s Masterbilt AJ-45ME puts that popular, beloved model back in the hands of the working musicians that it was designed for.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> Acoustic Nation Epiphone Holiday 2015 News Gear Acoustic Guitars Videos Blogs Electric Guitars Videos Gear Magazine Thu, 19 Nov 2015 20:00:43 +0000 Chris Gill, Video by Paul Riario 25773 at 10 Classic Guitar Solos That Use 10 Classic Effects <!--paging_filter--><p>What would Eric Clapton's classic "White Room" guitar solo be without that meaty, ubiquitous wah effect? </p> <p>What if Slowhand had decided to opt for heavy tremolo or tape delay instead?</p> <p>Of course, that issue is moot. Because, instead of these pointless questions, what we have instead is a timeless, iconic guitar solo on timeless track by a bona fide guitar god.</p> <p>But seriously, just how much does the stompbox or processor chosen by a guitarist for a particular solo influence how that solo is perceived or enjoyed by the listener? Certainly there's some logic when choosing an effect; tremolo won't do your fast hammer-ons any justice, for instance, and a crunchy overdrive can truly turn your high notes into, well, mush.</p> <p>A well-chosen effect for the guitar solo, however, can wind up being as important as a song's lyrics, vocals, beat and chord structure. Take Peter Frampton's "Do You Feel Like We Do." The song is synonymous with the talk box Frampton used on the extended solo.</p> <p>Here are 10 songs that offer the same experience; 10 songs made special, classic or, dare we say "iconic" by the effect chosen for the guitar solo. By the way, we've left out Cream's "White Room," so feel free to consider that the 11th song. Enjoy!<br /> <br /><br /> <strong>"Flight of the Bumble Bee," Extreme</strong> </p> <p>Extreme guitarist Nuno Bettencourt is one talented dude. By using a short delay repeat time on a Boss DD-3 pedal, Bettencourt tackles “Flight of the Bumble Bee” with a veracity and nimbleness seldom seen today. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>"Do You Feel Like We Do," Peter Frampton</strong></p> <p>While <em>Frampton Comes Alive</em> catapulted Peter Frampton to stardom in 1976, it was this performance on <em>Midnight Special</em> a year earlier that introduced the masses to this gifted guitarist (as a solo artist, at least), <a href="">and also where Frampton debuted his talk box.</a></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>"The Man Who Sold the World," Nirvana</strong></p> <p>This David Bowie cover, pulled from Nirvana’s classic <em>MTV Unplugged</em> show, was revered for its laid-back vibe and melodic appeal. Kurt Cobain used the Boss DS-1 pedal on the lead riff and solo and also was known to use the Boss DS-2. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>"Brighton Rock," Queen</strong></p> <p>Leading off Queen’s third album, <em>Sheer Heart Attack,</em> is the hard-charging “Brighton Rock,” which showcases Brian May’s breakthrough tape echo delay in full force. May is known for building his own guitar, “the Red Special,” with his dad and often employed repeated delays to go along with his signature sound.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>"Killing in the Name Of," Rage Against the Machine</strong></p> <p>This standout rap/rock offering introduced the world to RATM and guitarist Tom Morello. Using the original DigiTech Whammy, Morello tremolo-picked an unforgettable and unique solo that achieved otherwise-impossible pitch-shifted bends. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>"Voodoo Chile (Slight Return)," Jimi Hendrix</strong></p> <p>The wah pedal wouldn’t be what it is today if it weren’t for Jimi Hendrix’s usage on “Voodoo Child (Slight Return)." The Vox Clyde McCoy Wah is featured prominently throughout this well-known Hendrix classic. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>"Eruption," Van Halen</strong></p> <p>The guitar industry owes a lot of gratitude to Eddie Van Halen for creating a worldwide market for new effects and guitar sounds. “Eruption,” with some help from the MXR Phase 90 pedal, became arguably the most recognizable guitar solo in rock history, lengthened here in this early Eighties concert clip.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>"Cliffs of Dover," Eric Johnson</strong></p> <p>Eric Johnson rose to guitar prominence in the mid-Eighties, thanks to “Cliffs of Dover." Johnson used fuzz and reverb to get his unmistakable sound that complimented his eclectic, melodic style. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>"Fool in the Rain," Led Zeppelin</strong> </p> <p>A highlight of Led Zeppelin’s final proper studio album, <em>In Through the Out Door,”</em> “Fool in the Rain” was a radio success story that included a very interesting fuzz-laden, octave-below guitar solo by Jimmy Page. Page added an MXR Blue Box to add color and depth to this uncharacteristic Led Zep track. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>"She Sells Sanctuary," the Cult</strong> </p> <p>The Cult guitarist Billy Duffy captures a very warm, spacey sound on the breakthrough hit, “She Sells Sanctuary." Using a combination of a Boss Flanger, Analog Delay and Chorus, Duffy expertly layers a wall of sound to complement singer Ian Astbury’s emotive vocals.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/jimi-hendrix">Jimi Hendrix</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> Boss DigiTech MXR Queen Rage Against the Machine Roland Van Halen VOX Guitar World Lists Videos Effects Blogs News Features Gear Thu, 19 Nov 2015 15:43:35 +0000 Guitar World Staff, Damian Fanelli 25845 at Meet Steve Vai’s Ibanez JEM "Evo" Guitar <!--paging_filter--><p>Feast your eyes on Steve Vai’s Ibanez JEM, which he named “Evo” after the guitar's DiMarzio Evolution pickups. </p> <p>Photographed by Lisa S. Johnson in Los Angeles, August 28, 2010, for her book, <em>108 Rock Star Guitars</em>, “Evo” was hand-selected by Vai. </p> <p>Guitars are like snowflakes in that no two are exactly alike. Vai tested four identical production models of the Ibanez JEM before choosing this one to be his main squeeze. There was just something about its feel that moved him. </p> <p>He replaced its standard-issue pickups with DiMarzio Evolutions, and to distinguish her from his three other JEMs, he christened it with a hand-lettered “Evo.” </p> <p>Even after countless tours and recordings, his heart goes pitter-patter whenever he sees it, and regardless of what is going on in his life, he finds solace when she’s in his arms. Sure, Steve knows Evo is nothing but wire and wood, but when you connect with a guitar the way he has with Evo, when an instrument is, for so long, the voice of your heart and you have cried, screamed, prayed and raged through her, when she has been with you through your darkest depressions as well for your most joyous, love-filled moments—well, it’s no wonder Steve is afraid of how emotionally invested he is in Evo. </p> <p>She’s only on loan to him for a limited time; one day she’ll be dust. But for now, there’s still quite a bit they have to say together.*</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <em>Adapted from <a href=""></a>. Accessed February 9, 2011.</em></p> <p><strong>About the Photographer, Lisa S. Johnson:</strong> Armed with a macro lens, an incredible eye for detail and a truly ground breaking vision, Lisa Johnson’s guitar art, is taking the world of fine art photography on a rock and roll ride. Far from still life, Lisa’s work conjures the abstract, yet also possesses a very sensual and ethereal feel that intentionally illustrates the intimate wear and tear details of the instrument. Her unique presentation undoubtedly personifies the musician and captures their true spirit in these wooden extensions of their own iconic flesh.</p> <p><em>Her debut book, </em><a href="">108 Rock Star Guitars,</a><em> was released in hardcover October 2013 and softcover (by Hal Leonard) November 2014.</em></p> 108 Rock Star Guitars Ibanez Steve Vai Electric Guitars Blogs Galleries Gear Wed, 18 Nov 2015 16:23:43 +0000 Lisa S. Johnson 24415 at The DIY Musician: The Fascinating World of Ed Stilley’s Guitars <!--paging_filter--><p>In the pantheon of great guitar makers, Ed Stilley’s work stands alone like a castaway on its own musical island. </p> <p>Imperfect, bizarre and some even un-tunable to the modern equal temperament scale, his crudely made stringed instruments would make the most adventurous guitar collector shudder.</p> <p>And yet, his instruments (and, even more, his story) are just as fascinating as Leo Fender or C. F. Martin.</p> <p>A gorgeous new hardcover book by the University of Arkansas Press has just been published, documenting the life and work of this outsider luthier. The book, <em><a href="" target="_blank">True Faith, TrueLight: The Devotional Art of Ed Stilley,</a></em> captures his story and features stunning full-color pictures of his work. It is authored by musician and folklorist Kelly Mulhollan of Still on the Hill.</p> <p>From the book’s intro: In 1979, Stilley was leading a simple life as a farmer and singer of religious hymns in Hogscald Hollow, Arkansas. Life was filled with hard work and making do for Ed, his wife Eliza and their five children, who lived in many ways as if the second half of the 20th century had never happened.</p> <p>[In 1979] while plowing his field, he became convinced he was having a heart attack... [A]s he lay there in the freshly plowed dirt, Ed received a vision from God, telling him that he would be restored to health if he would agree to do one thing: make musical instruments and give them to children.</p> <p>… Beginning with a few simple hand tools, Ed worked tirelessly for 25 years to create more than 200 instruments, each a crazy quilt of heavy, rough-sawn wood scraps joined with found objects. A rusty door hinge, a steak bone, a stack of dimes, springs, saw blades, pot lids, metal pipes, glass bottles, aerosol cans—Ed used anything he could to build a working guitar, fiddle or dulcimer. On each instrument Ed inscribed “True Faith, True Light, Have Faith in God.”</p> <p>Author and musician Kelly Mulhollan paints a picture of a man driven by faith to make guitars for every child in his area, even though he has no training in instrument design and construction. His instruments are built from lumber-yard scraps and other unthinkable wood choices. The shapes are equally unusual because Stilley would boil the thin oak sides overnight and then bend them into whatever shape they dictated in the morning.</p> <p><img src="/files/imce-images/stilley%201.jpg" width="620" height="350" alt="stilley 1.jpg" /></p> <p>The most fascinating part of Stilley’s instruments is what’s hidden inside the soundholes: saw blades, springs, aluminum tubes and other metal objects. Stilley added these parts to create natural reverb inside the instruments, or as he was quoted, “to better speak the voice of the Lord.” The book uses X-rays and diagrams to chronicle Stilley’s wild sound designs. Mulhollan discovered in his research that Stilley created "sonic loops" through the internal metal pieces. </p> <p><img src="/files/imce-images/stilley%202.jpg" width="620" height="350" alt="stilley 2.jpg" /></p> <p>In his wild setups, Stilley had the string vibrations captured by a string tree bar at the headstock and delivered down the neck in a truss rod to the saw blades and other parts inside the body. They were further amplified by an invention called the Jingler hidden inside the neck.</p> <p>Yes, his designs are that intense.</p> <p>But how do they sound? Here’s author Kelly Mullholland and his wife, Donna (as the duo, Still on the Hill), performing on an Ed Stilley guitar and fiddle.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><em>True Faith, True Light</em> should be in the collection of any instrument fan or builder. Mulhollan’s portrait of a man driven by faith and the gorgeous photos by Kirk Lanier make this a winner. The book is as much an art piece as Stilley’s guitars.</p> <p>In an era of perfection dictated by Autotune and CNC machines, the world needs Ed Stilley. This book is essential.</p> <p><strong><em>True Faith, True Light: The Devotional Art of Ed Stilley,</em> $35 at <a href="" target="_blank"></a></strong></p> <p><em>Shane Speal is the "King of the Cigar Box Guitar" and the creator of the modern cigar box guitar movement. Hear the music, see the instruments and read about his Cigar Box Guitar Museum at <a href=""></a>. Speal's latest album, </em><a href="">Holler!</a><em> is on C. B. Gitty Records.</em></p> Acoustic Nation Ed Stilley News Shane Speal The DIY Musician Gear Acoustic Guitars Blogs Videos Blogs Gear Tue, 17 Nov 2015 19:46:28 +0000 Shane Speal 25848 at Review: Jericho Guitars Avenger 7 Pro 26” — Video <!--paging_filter--><p>The marketplace for solidbody electric guitars is very crowded, and most companies seem content to take a “me too” approach to extended range instruments. </p> <p>Jericho Guitars wisely took a different approach by specializing in long-scale and extended range guitars that are more in tune with the wants and desires of modern guitarists, both figuratively and literally. </p> <p>Jericho’s new Avenger 7 Pro 26”, which features a 26-inch scale, offers an “in between” option that bridges the gap between a 25.5-inch standard scale guitar and a 27-inch scale baritone to provide playing comfort similar to the former and the ideal string tension and more accurate intonation of the latter.</p> <p><strong>FEATURES</strong></p> <p>The overall size of the Jericho Avenger 7 Pro is slightly longer than that of a standard six-string, but that’s due to a combination of a bigger body and longer headstock in addition to the extra 1/2 to 1 1/4 inches of scale length. Jericho offers four different versions of the model: ash body/maple fretboard, natural or blue spalted maple top, and satin blacked out finish—the latter three featuring mahogany bodies and rosewood fingerboards with block inlays. We tested the satin black version. </p> <p>Other features common to all Avenger 7 Pro models include a three-piece maple neck with “set-thru” construction, 24 frets, recessed TonePros locking tune-o-matic bridge, string-thru-body design, and Grover Rotomatic locking tuners. Electronics consist of direct-mounted Seymour Duncan JB7 (bridge) and ’59 Reissue (neck) humbuckers, a three-way blade pickup selector, master tone control, and master volume knob that does double duty as a push-pull coil tap switch. </p> <p><strong>PERFORMANCE</strong></p> <p>Jericho determined that the 26-inch scale was the ideal length for a seven-string guitar with a 24-fret design. Playing the guitar, it’s immediately apparent that they made the right decision, as the intonation is dead-on when playing the lowest notes on the lowest strings and the highest notes on the highest strings—the most common problem areas for standard- and extended-scale guitars, respectively. </p> <p>Even better, the guitar feels familiar and comfortable for players who are used to instruments with 25.5-inch scales, which can be attributed to both the 26-inch scale length and Jericho’s outstanding construction, the guitar’s overall streamlined feel, and its slim neck profile. The instrument sounds amazing too, with crisp attack and detailed articulation thanks to the responsive Seymour Duncan pickups. Jericho’s Avenger 7 Pro may offer players the ideal seven-string design.</p> <p><strong>DIRECT PRICE</strong> $849.99<br /> <strong>MANUFACTURER</strong> Jericho Guitars, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>• The 26-inch scale provides more accurate intonation for a seven-string guitar with 24 frets while also providing playing comfort for guitarists used to standard scale lengths.</p> <p>• Direct-mounted Seymour Duncan JB7 (bridge) and ’59 Reissue (neck) humbuckers produce huge tones with crisp attack and detailed articulation.</p> <p><strong>THE BOTTOM LINE</strong> The Jericho Avenger 7 Pro’s 26-inch scale hits the “just right” sweet spot for a seven-string guitar with a 24-fret neck, providing the ideal balance of comfort, string tension, and intonation for players exploring extend</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> Holiday 2015 Jericho Guitars Videos Electric Guitars Gear Magazine Mon, 16 Nov 2015 13:17:13 +0000 Chris Gill, Video by Paul Riario 25772 at Epiphone Introduces Jeff Waters Annihilation-II Flying-V <!--paging_filter--><p>Epiphone has introduced the Jeff Waters Annihilation-II Flying-V Outfit, Waters' second signature model with Epiphone. </p> <p>The new guitar features a custom Annihilation Red gloss color finish designed by Waters and is powered by Epiphone ProBucker humbucker pickups. The Annihilation-II also comes with a custom Phenolic fingerboard, KillPot switch, Grover Rotomatic machine heads and a custom-fitted gig bag.</p> <p>Waters is not only revered for his work with Annihilator, but also is known around the world for his guitar clinics, which are standing-room-only events attended by pros and pros-at-heart. </p> <p>“The Annihilation-II Flying-V Outfit is exactly what I envisioned,” Waters says. “I wanted a guitar that most hard rock and metal players could afford with killer, versatile pickups, a nice finish and a setup to play either tight heavy rhythms or fast screaming solos I can proudly put my name on!”</p> <p>The Annihilation-II Flying-V Outfit was designed by Waters with Epiphone’s luthiers at the “House of Stathopoulo” headquarters in Nashville. The Annihilation-II Flying-V Outfit is an updated version of the first Waters signature Flying-V that set new standards for speed and sound and has been Jeff’s go-to guitar for hundreds of concerts and clinics around the world.</p> <p>“Jeff’s stunning combination of speed and finesse have made him one of the most admired guitarists of his generation,” said Epiphone President Jim Rosenberg. “We at Epiphone are Jeff’s biggest fans.” </p> <p>This guitar will be available in December 2015.</p> <p><strong>For more about this model, visit its page on <a href="" target="_blank"></a></strong></p> Annihilator Epiphone Jeff Waters Electric Guitars News Gear Fri, 13 Nov 2015 20:24:34 +0000 Guitar World Staff 25830 at Review: Kiesel V8 Vader Eight-String Guitar — Video <!--paging_filter--><p><strong><em>GOLD AWARD</em></strong></p> <p>When Carvin recently split into two separate companies for instruments and amps and audio equipment, the guitar division was named Kiesel in tribute to Lowell Kiesel, who founded Carvin in 1946 and passed away in 2009. </p> <p>At Kiesel Guitars, Lowell’s son Mark and grandson Jeff are carrying on the family tradition, offering custom guitars under the Kiesel name as well as Carvin brand models. </p> <p>Kiesel Custom Guitars is their flagship line, offering a staggering variety of options that allow customers to select features that perfectly fit their needs and preferences in exacting detail. We took a look at a Kiesel V8 Vader eight-string fully loaded with a variety of impressive options.</p> <p><strong>FEATURES</strong></p> <p>The Kiesel V8 Vader features a compact, headless design that is ergonomically designed for maximum playing comfort and balance. All V8 Vader models have a 27-inch scale neck-thru-body design—our example had an ash body with antique ash treatment, five-piece black limba and koa neck, zebrawood fretboard with no inlays, 24 jumbo gold alloy frets, and a 20-inch radius. Kiesel even offers a choice of seven different logo styles—ours had a gold drop-shadow logo.</p> <p> The hardware and pickups were both black to perfectly complement the dark, rich colors of the zebrawood and antique-treated ash. The Hipshot headless system bridge also houses the eight tuner mechanisms, and controls consist of master volume, master tone, and a five-position pickup selector switch. Pickups are a pair of Kiesel’s Lithium Series passive humbuckers with Alnico V magnets and Patented Torx head adjustable pole pieces.</p> <p><strong>PERFORMANCE</strong></p> <p>Kiesel’s emergence as a separate company has enabled them to focus exclusively on developing new models and improving on existing designs. It has also enabled them to cut costs significantly, and the savings are passed on to customers thanks to the company’s direct sales model. As a result, our V8 Vader offered craftsmanship, attention to detail, and materials comparable to a guitar costing three to four times more than our example’s street price. </p> <p> The V8’s light weight and ergonomic design makes it ideal for six-string players making the transition to eight strings as well as anyone who wants an eight-string that is simply very comfortable to play. (Kiesel also offers the Vader in six and seven-string versions in both 25.5-inch scale or 27-inch scale.) </p> <p>The five-position pickup selector delivers instant access to an impressive variety of full humbucking and split-coil tones, and the pickups are well balanced across the entire extended frequency range, providing crisp, defined tone whether using a clean setting or saturated high-gain distortion on a wide variety of standard guitar amps. The V8 is a particularly wise choice for guitarists who want to make an eight-string their main instrument.</p> <p><strong>DIRECT PRICE</strong> $1,199 (starting); $1,599 (as tested)<br /> <strong>MANUFACTURER</strong> Kiesel Guitars, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>• Kiesel Lithium Series passive humbuckers provide powerful, crisp, defined tone across the entire frequency range.</p> <p>• The headless neck-thru-body design offers players a compact, comfortable design that feels and plays like a standard six-string instrument.</p> <p><strong>THE BOTTOM LINE:</strong> An incredible value, the Kiesel V8 Vader is an affordable alternative for guitarists looking for their first eight-string as well as an outstanding upgrade for eight-string players looking for a more comfortable axe. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> Holiday 2015 Kiesel Guitars Videos Electric Guitars Gear Magazine Wed, 11 Nov 2015 13:24:15 +0000 Chris Gill, Video by Paul Riario 25774 at