Gear http://www.guitarworld.com/taxonomy/term/6/0 en Martin Guitar to Introduce Four New Models at 2015 Summer NAMM http://www.guitarworld.com/acoustic-nation-martin-guitar-to-present-four-new-models-at-2015-summer-namm <!--paging_filter--><p>Today C. F. Martin &amp; Co. announced the notable new models to be presented at the 2015 Summer NAMM show in Nashville July 9 through July 12. </p> <p>The iconic 182-year-old guitar manufacturer will unveil the 00-15E Retro and the LE-Cowboy-2015 alongside four other distinctive guitars. </p> <p>The addition of the 00-15E Retro to the successful Retro Series is the first 00-14 fret instrument in the product family. </p> <p>The LE-Cowboy-2015 features a design on the body of the guitar by famed watercolorist William Matthews.</p> <p>More details on all of the products featured at the showcase can be found below, and complete product specs can be found at <a href="http://www.martinguitar.com/new">martinguitar.com/new.</a></p> http://www.guitarworld.com/acoustic-nation-martin-guitar-to-present-four-new-models-at-2015-summer-namm#comments Acoustic Nation C. F. Martin & Co Martin News Summer NAMM 2015 Gear Acoustic Guitars News Gear Mon, 06 Jul 2015 20:12:22 +0000 Acoustic Nation 24875 at http://www.guitarworld.com Eddie Van Halen on How He Created His Signature Sound Using MXR's Phase 90 and Flanger Pedals http://www.guitarworld.com/eddie-van-halen-how-he-created-his-signature-sound-using-mxrs-phase-90-and-flanger-pedals <!--paging_filter--><p>Earlier this year, in preparation for the 40th anniversary of <a href="http://www.jimdunlop.com/products/electronics/mxr">MXR,</a> its parent company, <a href="http://www.jimdunlop.com/">Dunlop Manufacturing,</a> took a survey to learn how guitarists perceive the pedal maker. </p> <p>One of the questions asked was, “Which player do you associate the most with the MXR brand?” The respondents chose Eddie Van Halen more than 60 percent of the time. Notably, the runner-up received fewer than half as many mentions. </p> <p>That result is, in part, due to MXR’s EVH Signature Series pedals, the EVH90 Phase 90 and the EVH117 Flanger, which became perennial best-selling MXR products upon their introductions in 2004 and 2007, respectively. But MXR pedals have remained an essential element of Van Halen’s sound since his band’s debut album was released in 1978. </p> <p>The swirling textures of a Phase 90 are heard on classic tunes like “Eruption,” “Atomic Punk,” “Ain’t Talkin’ ’Bout Love,” <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CxZy3Tr2wQM">“Everybody Wants Some!!”</a> and “Drop Dead Legs” as well as new songs like “Outta Space” and “Stay Frosty,” and Van Halen’s distinctive and innovative use of the Flanger made an indelible impression on guitarists through songs like “Unchained,” “And the Cradle Will Rock…” and “Hear About It Later.” </p> <p>In addition to those two tone-enhancing mainstays, Ed has also relied upon pro-quality MXR tools like the Six-Band Graphic Equalizer and Smart Gate to keep his onstage tone full, aggressive and noise-free. His current onstage pedal board even includes an MXR Analog Chorus, which he uses for songs like “Pretty Woman” and “Little Guitars.” </p> <p>In celebration of MXR’s 40th anniversary milestone, it made perfect sense for <em>Guitar World</em> to talk with the company’s most influential player about how his MXR pedals have influenced him throughout the last four decades. </p> <p><strong>GUITAR WORLD: Did you use any pedals when you were a kid and learning to play?</strong></p> <p>A wah-wah was probably the first pedal that I ever tried. I probably borrowed it from a buddy. But I was from the school of plugging the guitar straight into the amp, so I didn’t use any pedals at first.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/z_lwocmL9dQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><strong>How did you discover MXR pedals?</strong></p> <p>A really good friend of mine named Terry Kilgore and I were the so-called gunslingers in Pasadena back in the mid Seventies. We jammed together and would trade licks and have a lot of fun. We weren’t competitive at all. I went to one of his band rehearsals once, and that was when I first saw a Phase 90. </p> <p>He used to play a lot of Robin Trower stuff. He used the Phase 90 with the speed control set around the 2 o’clock setting to get more of that fast, swirling sound. I decided to pick one up for myself. I was into Robin Trower too, but we didn’t play any of his songs, so I used it with the control set between 9 and 10 o’clock. I still use it the same way today. I just locked into that one setting, and I’ve used it ever since.</p> <p><strong>Why do you prefer the slower speed setting?</strong></p> <p>I thought it sounded unique. I never heard that before. It didn’t sound like the phase shifters made by other companies, where the phase sweep is more heavy and pronounced, almost more like a flanger. The Phase 90 produces a very light change of the sound. It’s not an over-the-top effect. It’s very subtle. </p> <p><strong>You tended to kick on the Phase 90 during your solos.</strong></p> <p>I did that in the early days because it would make the solo pop. Suddenly it became a different sound, which helped me stand out in the mix, because back then, in the club days, we usually had lousy P.A. systems and lousy sound guys. It didn’t boost the signal, but it made it pop out so the solo was more audible. It enhanced the tone.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/nU4IMFNgHa0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><strong>What led you to the MXR Flanger?</strong></p> <p>Obviously, I liked the Phase 90, so when MXR came out with the Flanger, I said, What the hell? I loved their stuff. Their pedals are built like a brick shit house, and they make great sounds, so I started putzing around with the Flanger too. I always use the same setting for everything, from the intro to “And the Cradle Will Rock…” to “Unchained,” with the exception of the setting I used on the intro to “Outta Love Again” and “Bullethead.” </p> <p>I set the three knobs on the left between 11 o’clock or 11:30, and the last knob on the right [regeneration] is all the way up. I might fine-tune the speed a little to match it to the tempo of the song, like on “Unchained” where the sweep goes perfectly with the riff. I was just goofing off and experimenting. It wouldn’t have sounded good to use the flanger all the way through. The riff just needed a little bit here and there. It’s a cool, tasty little tidbit that I threw in there to draw attention to the riff. </p> <p><strong>How did you decide to place the Flanger in front of the Phase 90 in your signal chain?</strong></p> <p>I have no idea! I think I just liked having the Phase 90 in the middle between the Flanger and the microphone on the stage. </p> <p><strong>How did these pedals influence your songwriting?</strong></p> <p>One good example is “And the Cradle Will Rock…” I had written that intro riff on the electric piano, and the guys thought that it needed something. I just hooked up the Flanger and pounded on the low keys. It was a great sound, and it worked. There wasn’t any rocket science to it. Even the Flanger on “Unchained” was totally by accident. </p> <p>For some reason I just thought that the Flanger sounded good there. The way it goes from the sweep up to the sweep down wasn’t planned. My normal setting just happened to fit the tempo of the song. I kicked it in and out, and when I heard the way the Flanger swept up and then down, I thought it sounded cool. Nothing I’ve ever done is really all that thought out. I’d just wing stuff, and if it sounded cool I would do it again.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/1m-DYM7JvMA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><strong>Do you remember how you came up with the intro to “Atomic Punk”?</strong></p> <p>That basic idea for that sound originally came from “Light Up the Sky,” which I had written before “Atomic Punk,” even though “Light Up the Sky” appeared on our second record. After the guitar solo there is a drum break, and you can hear me rubbing my palm on the low E string. One day I decided to try that with the Phase 90. It was an interesting sound, and it turned into a cool song. I’ve never really ever heard that sound from anyone else, neither before nor after I did that. After the solo, I actually also used the Flanger for a quick bit. </p> <p><strong>How did those pedals become an essential part of your sound?</strong></p> <p>They enhance the sound of what I’m playing. In certain spots I would use them if I needed them. It wasn’t a set thing; I’d just wing it, and nine times out of 10 it would work. I have to have an idea for a song first, then I’ll putz around and add or take away things. It’s like making a steak: you have to have the steak first, then you can make it better by adding a little seasoning, but not too much because you want to taste the steak, not the seasoning. </p> <p><Strong>With the exception of your tape echo units, you used only MXR effects during the band’s early days. What inspired that brand loyalty?</strong></p> <p>I love the way that my MXR pedals sound, and I’ve never broken one. I tried a few stomp boxes by other companies back then, but most of them were cheaply made, the sound quality wasn’t consistent, and they’d break when you stepped on them. MXR pedals are very solidly built. They always do what they’re supposed to do, and they never falter. I’m pretty brutal on my gear. If I can’t break it, no one can!</p> <p><strong>Did you modify your pedals in any way?</strong></p> <p>I wouldn’t even know how to modify a pedal. I never had a reason to do that. A pedal does what it does. There are a lot of variables involved in trying to get the same sound as mine. First, you have a guitar. Then there are cables in between that and the type of amp you’re using. Then there are the settings on the amp’s controls. But the most important part is the player. I’ve said this often before: you could put nine guys in the studio playing through my rig set exactly the same and they’ll all sound different. The only modification to my pedals was the player! [laughs] It sounds that way because it’s me playing.</p> <p><strong>Have you ever plugged your stomp boxes into an amp’s effect loop or in between a preamp and power amp?</strong></p> <p>I’ve always plugged them straight into the amp’s input. It just sounds better that way. </p> <p><strong>How did your MXR EVH signature pedals develop?</strong></p> <p>The ICs [integrated circuits] that MXR used in the Seventies were no longer available. The factories were closed and the technology had changed. The challenge was making pedals that sounded the same as the originals using different parts. That took a while. </p> <p>The Phase 90 was pretty easy to duplicate, but the Flanger took a lot longer. We worked through a series of prototypes with Bob Cedro of MXR. Our yardstick was the “Unchained” setting. We had my original Seventies Flanger, and we would compare the prototypes to that. Bob would take notes, work on the circuit for another three weeks, and bring it back. We kept narrowing the gap until we got it. It took about nine months of going back and forth. I know exactly what I want, and I won’t stop until I get it.</p> <p><strong>Who came up with the preset button for the EVH Flanger?</strong></p> <p>It was a collaborative effort. Since there is one main setting that I use, we decided to make it easy for people to duplicate that. I could also use it to switch between my “Unchained” setting and the one I use on “Outta Love Again,” even though I never actually do that. [laughs] I still like to adjust the knobs myself instead of flipping a button. </p> <p><strong>Your most recent rig has an MXR Analog Chorus and Smart Gate. Why have you continued to stick with MXR pedals?</strong></p> <p>I would not be able to use my rig the way I play at that volume on channel three on my 5150 IIIS amp without the Smart Gate. They make great stuff. I have never, ever broken an MXR pedal. They deliver a product that does what it’s supposed to do. It’s that simple. </p> <p><strong>You seem to be exceptionally loyal to MXR pedals.</strong></p> <p>I established a great working relationship with Jimmy Dunlop and everyone at the company a long time ago. I’ll toss around ideas with them, and they’re really receptive to my input. I’m very close with them, and they take great care of me. </p> <p><em>Photo: Neil Zlozower/atlasicons.com</em></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="/eddie-van-halen">Eddie Van Halen</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/van-halen">Van Halen</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/eddie-van-halen-how-he-created-his-signature-sound-using-mxrs-phase-90-and-flanger-pedals#comments Dunlop Manufacturing Eddie Van Halen Jim Dunlop MXR November 2014 Effects Interviews News Features Gear Magazine Mon, 06 Jul 2015 18:44:16 +0000 Chris Gill 22411 at http://www.guitarworld.com Pettyjohn Electronics Announces the PettyDrive Deluxe, a Studio-Grade Dual-Channel Analog Overdrive Pedal — Demo Video http://www.guitarworld.com/pettyjohn-announces-pettydrive-studio-grade-dual-channel-analog-overdrive-pedal-demo-video <!--paging_filter--><p>Pettyjohn Electronics has announced the PettyDrive Deluxe, a studio-grade dual-channel analog overdrive pedal that's engineered to deliver the powerful tone and dynamic feel of boutique tube amps pushed to the edge of breakup.</p> <p>The two fully independent channels are uniquely voiced to compliment each other and provide a wide range of sounds that range from thick, saturated American iron and growl to harmonically rich British-like chime. </p> <p>Only the highest-possible quality audiophile components are used to ensure the lowest noise, years of reliability and the most articulate tone possible. The PettyDrive is a serious tool for tone, built for the modern working guitarist in mind with a balance of advanced tone shaping features, general ease-of-use and tone that truly inspires.</p> <p><strong>MSRP:</strong> $399 (Deluxe, pictured), $317 (Standard)</p> <p><strong>For more information about the PettyDrive, check out the videos and specs below and visit <a href="http://pettyjohnelectronics.com/shop/pettydrive-pedal-deluxe/">pettyjohnelectronics.com.</a> Follow Pettyjohn Electronics on <a href="https://www.facebook.com/pettyjohnelectronics?fref=ts&amp;ref=br_tf">Facebook</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/pettyjohnelec">Twitter.</a></strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/hBN0Yr0YSYs" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><strong>Unique Features:</strong></p> <p>• Hot-Rodded Chrome Knobs<br /> • Professional Studio-Grade Discrete Opamp Input Buffer Chip<br /> • Channel 2 is equipped with all Burr-Brown chips for maximum clarity and transparency.<br /> • Silver Nameplate</p> <p><strong>Main Features:</strong></p> <p>• Two Fully Independent, Stackable Overdrive Circuits<br /> • Channel 1/2 Order Flip<br /> • Unique Parallel Effects Loop on Channel 2 for New Pedal Combinations<br /> • Available with Standard or Deluxe Chip Set<br /> • Built with Highest Possible Quality, Audiophile Components for Excellent Reliability and Performance<br /> • Symmetrical Control Layout<br /> • Always-On Studio Grade Input Buffer for Zero-Loss Bypassed Tone<br /> • Internal True-Bypass Switching<br /> • Internal Charge Pump for Extra High Headroom<br /> • Easily Powered by Standard Pedal Power 9v-15v DC (-)<br /> • Current Draw: 100 mA<br /> • Cool Red Jewel Light Indicators<br /> • Made in the USA<br /> • Channel 1: Chime Drive</p> <p>• A unique preamp circuit that can be configured as a Boost or Low Gain Drive<br /> • Tilt EQ tone knob with Orange Drop Filter Caps for Sweet Tone Shaping<br /> • 3-Way Clipping/Headroom Mini-Toggle<br /> • 3-Way Low Cut Mini-Toggle<br /> • Use Independently or Stack with Channel 2<br /> • Channel 2: Iron Drive</p> <p>• Low to Medium Gain Overdrive voiced for Thick, Smoothly Saturated Tone<br /> • Clean Mix Knob for Enhanced Feel and Dynamics<br /> • Parallel Effects Loop for Combining Other Pedals in Totally New Ways!!<br /> • 3-Way Clipping Mini-Toggle gives access to Asymmetrical Silicone, LED and MOSFET clipping sections, Chosen for Their Unique Tonal Qualities.<br /> • 3-Way Low Cut Mini-Toggle<br /> • High-Cut Tone Knob for Taming Harsh High Frequencies</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/MR0lbLErIHw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> http://www.guitarworld.com/pettyjohn-announces-pettydrive-studio-grade-dual-channel-analog-overdrive-pedal-demo-video#comments PettyDrive Deluxe Pettyjohn Electronics Videos Effects News Gear Thu, 02 Jul 2015 18:22:41 +0000 Guitar World Staff 24865 at http://www.guitarworld.com Jerry Garcia’s Tiger and Rosebud: A Look at the Last Guitars He Played Onstage http://www.guitarworld.com/jerry-garcia-s-tiger-and-rosebud-look-last-guitars-he-played-onstage <!--paging_filter--><p>This weekend, the Grateful Dead will reunite for what is being billed as their final concerts. </p> <p>From July 3 through 5, guitarists Bob Weir, bassist Phil Lesh, and drummers Bill Kreutzmann and Mickey Hart will reunite, along with Phish guitarist Trey Anastasio, for three shows at Chicago’s Soldier Field, the site of the band’s last concert with legendary Dead cofounder Jerry Garcia on July 9, 1995. </p> <p>With Grateful Dead’s last stand on the horizon, we thought this was a good time to celebrate the genius of Garcia, that band’s heart and soul. </p> <p>We could talk about Jerry’s playing, but instead we want to look at a pair of instruments that were near and dear to him: the Doug Irwin creations Tiger and Rosebud. These were the last two guitars Garcia played onstage, when he made what would be his final performance 20 years ago at Soldier Field.</p> <p><strong>Tiger (1979)</strong></p> <p>In 1972, Garcia began a long association with Irwin when he purchased a guitar called Eagle from the luthier. Garcia liked the guitar so much that he placed a custom order with Irwin. That guitar—dubbed Wolf, for the cartoon wolf sticker Garcia had originally applied below its bridge—was completed in 1973. When Garcia went to pick it up, he was so impressed by it that he placed an order for another custom guitar before leaving. </p> <p>Wolf became Garcia’s main instrument for the next four years, during which time he asked Irwin to make several modifications, including a buffered effect loop that let him wire his effect pedals to the guitar and bypass them with a switch. Eventually, though, Wolf was replaced by the guitar that Garcia had ordered back in 1973, when he’d received Wolf. That guitar was Tiger, which he received in July 1979.</p> <p>Garcia had given Irwin total freedom with Tiger, and he was not disappointed. The guitar was beautiful, with contrasting layers of tone woods, including cocobolo, maple and vermillion. Detailed pearl inlays on the body’s back and fretboard heightened the guitar’s status as a work of art. </p> <p>But Tiger was also a testament to Irwin’s technical innovation. The guitar’s coil-tap switches, five-position pickup selector, unity gain buffer, effect loop and other controls gave Garcia the freedom to craft a broad range of tones from the DiMarzio pickups, which included Dual Sound humbuckers in the middle and bridge positions and an SDS-1 in the neck (the Dual Sounds were replaced in 1982 with DiMarzio Super IIs).</p> <p>“There are 12 discrete possible voices that are all pretty different,” Garcia said of Tiger’s electronics. That tonal power is the reason Tiger was his main guitar for the next 11 years, a continuous run longer than that of any other guitar Garcia played.</p> <p><strong>Rosebud (1990)</strong></p> <p>Rosebud was Tiger’s replacement, and Garcia considered it to be Irwin’s masterpiece. While it bore similarities to Tiger, it featured a very different complement of electronic components. These included three humbuckers and a Roland GK-2 hexaphonic guitar synth pickup. Irwin mounted the GK-2’s MIDI and synth controls on the guitar for ease of use. The guitar also had hollow body cavities that reduced its weight by two pounds.</p> <p>Rosebud’s MIDI features were key to its versatility. Garcia had begun using guitar synths in the Eighties when he installed a Roland hexaphonic pickup on his Wolf guitar. In Rosebud, Garcia finally had one instrument with all the features he’d sought, allowing him to play a broad range of guitar tones as well as external sounds via MIDI.</p> <p>Rosebud was eventually succeeded by a replica of Tiger called Lightning Bolt, built by luthier Stephen Cripe. The guitar takes its name from the Grateful Dead lightning bolt, which adorns the cover plate below the bridge. But when it came time for the Dead to play Soldier Field in Chicago on July 9, 1995—Garcia’s last gig with the group—Lightning Bolt was in the shop for repairs. In its place was Rosebud. When the guitar began to suffer technical problems midway through the show, Garcia pulled out Tiger, playing his last notes onstage with the guitar that had been with him longer than any other instrument. </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="/grateful-dead">Grateful Dead</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/jerry-garcia-s-tiger-and-rosebud-look-last-guitars-he-played-onstage#comments Grateful Dead Jerry Garcia News Gear Thu, 02 Jul 2015 17:23:10 +0000 Christopher Scapelliti 24864 at http://www.guitarworld.com Vox Releases AC Clip Tune Clip-on Guitar Tuner http://www.guitarworld.com/vox-releases-ac-clip-tune <!--paging_filter--><p>Vox has announced the release of its new AC Clip Tune clip-on tuner. </p> <p>“High precision, a color LCD display and a flexible clip mechanism demonstrate the AC Clip Tune’s quality as a tuner,” said John Stippell, product manager for Vox. </p> <p>The Vox AC Clip Tune will be available July 2015 with a U.S. MSRP of $29.99. Check out the specs below and visit <a href="www.voxamps.com/">voxamps.com</a> to find out more. </p> <p><strong>Specifications:</strong></p> <p>• <strong>Scale:</strong> 12-note equal temperament<br /> • <strong>Range (sine wave):</strong><br /> • <strong>Chromatic:</strong> A0 (27.50 Hz) – C8 (4186 Hz)<br /> • <strong>Guitar:</strong> B1 flat5 (46.25 Hz) – E4 capo7 (493.88 Hz)<br /> • <strong>Bass:</strong> B0 flat5 (23.12 Hz) – C3 (130.81 Hz)<br /> • <strong>Precision:</strong> +/-1 cent<br /> • <strong>Reference pitch:</strong> 436 – 445 Hz (1 Hz steps)<br /> • <strong>Flat tuning:</strong> 1 – 5 semitones (in semitone steps)<br /> • <strong>Capo tuning:</strong> 1 – 7 semitones (in semitone steps)<br /> • <strong>Battery:</strong> CR2032 lithium battery 3V<br /> • <strong>Battery life:</strong> approximately 8 hours (tuner continuously operating, A4 input)<br /> • <strong>Dimensions (W x D x H):</strong> 61 mm x 65 mm x 28 mm/ 2.40" x 2.56" x 1.10"<br /> • <strong>Weight:</strong> 26 g / 0.92 oz. (including battery)<br /> • <strong>Included items:</strong> CR2032 lithium battery</p> http://www.guitarworld.com/vox-releases-ac-clip-tune#comments VOX Accessories News Gear Mon, 29 Jun 2015 19:03:12 +0000 Guitar World Staff 24840 at http://www.guitarworld.com The Top 10 Blues-Approved Overdrive/Distortion Pedals http://www.guitarworld.com/la-grunge-top-10-blues-approved-overdrive-distortion-pedals <!--paging_filter--><p>The origin of guitar distortion goes back to the earliest electrified blues guitarists. </p> <p>They didn’t care that their primitive tube amps were breaking up and distorting, as long as they were loud. Soon, blues guitarists grew quite fond of those nasty, gnarly distorted tones, and they sought to replicate them by any means necessary. </p> <p>Enter the overdrive pedal. Designed to push an amp to the brink, the overdrive pedal allows players to summon singing sustain, compelling crunch, and glorious grit at any volume level, giving guitarists the bite and balls they need for genuine blues-approved tone. </p> <p>While a handful of purists prefer to plug a guitar straight into an amp, most blues guitarists these days have a handful of overdrive, distortion and even fuzz boxes in their rigs. </p> <p>Thanks to the proliferation of boutique pedal builders over the past 20 years, there are easily more than a thousand distortion devices available to help guitarists find their signature blues sound. </p> <p>The following pedals are the top 10 classics and modern marvels that get our mojo working when we spank that plank and crank up the volume.</p> <p><strong>10. Way Huge Pork Loin</strong> </p> <p>By blending modern soft-clipping BiFET overdrive and classic clean “British” preamp tone pathways, the Pork Loin allows players to dial in raw, raunchy tones that never lose bottom-end clarity or definition. The Pork Loin plays a massive role in Joe Bonamassa’s bigger-than-life modern blues sound. </p> <p><img src="http://dl.guitarworld.com/gearphotos/PorkLoin.jpg" width="500" /> </p> <p><strong>9. Klon Centaur</strong> </p> <p>The Klon Centaur’s legendary clean boost transforms a guitar’s natural tone the same way a livestock farmer turns a piglet into a prize-winning porker—by making it bigger, fatter, juicier, meatier and more muscular. </p> <p>Centaur designer Bill Finnegan discontinued production several years ago, driving prices for used Klons well above $1,000, but he’s trying to bring a similar pedal to the market again with the same hand-selected parts, attention to detail and signature sound that the numerous “klones” have failed to match. </p> <p><img src="http://dl.guitarworld.com/gearphotos/KlonCentaur.jpg" width="500" /></p> <p><strong>8. PaulC Audio Tim</strong> </p> <p>Thanks to its impressive tonal range and expressive touch sensitivity, the Tim is a favorite of tube amp aficionados who don’t want to sacrifice the dynamic response of their favorite amps but need more gain and tonal-shaping capabilities. With the EQ controls set at 12 o’clock, it provides some of the most transparent clean boost and overdrive tones available. </p> <p><img src="http://dl.guitarworld.com/gearphotos/Fin.jpg" width="500" /> </p> <p><strong>7. Fulltone Full-Drive 2</strong> </p> <p>Fulltone makes an impressive variety of incredible overdrive, distortion and fuzz pedals, including the OCD, PlimSoul and Fat-Boost FB-3, but when it comes to the blues, most guitarists choose the Fulltone Full-Drive 2. </p> <p>With separate overdrive and boost footswitches and mini toggle switches for selecting clean boost, midrange emphasis, MOSFET clipping and more, the Full-Drive 2 is a versatile overdrive pedal that makes it easy to dial in your own signature blues tones. </p> <p><img src="/files/imce-images/full%20drive.jpg" alt="full drive.jpg" width="540" height="429" /></p> <hr /> <p><strong>6. Ibanez TS-808 Tube Screamer</strong> </p> <p>Thanks to Stevie Ray Vaughan’s use of an Ibanez Tube Screamer (he replaced the TS-808 with a TS-9 and TS-10 later in his career), this pedal has gone on to become the best-selling and most copied overdrive pedal of all time. </p> <p>The Tube Screamer’s output boost and signature midrange hump, along with a characteristic warmth that the TS-808’s successors lack, make it ideal for playing fat, aggressive solos that destroy everything else in its path. </p> <p><img src="http://dl.guitarworld.com/gearphotos/Tubescreamer.jpg" width="500" /> </p> <p><strong>5. Electro-Harmonix Big Muff π</strong> </p> <p>Most staunch traditionalists think that the raunchy fuzz tones of a Big Muff π are a little too furry and furious for the blues, but that hasn’t stopped a new generation of blues-inspired players from using one. The Big Muff is a key element of 21st century blues as envisioned by Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys and Jack White of the White Stripes, the Raconteurs and the Dead Weather. </p> <p><img src="http://dl.guitarworld.com/gearphotos/BigMuff.jpg" width="500" /></p> <p><strong>4. Dallas-Arbiter Rangemaster Treble Booster</strong> </p> <p>Eric Clapton’s alleged use of a Dallas-Arbiter Rangemaster Treble Booster on John Mayall’s legendary <em>Blues Breakers with Eric Clapton</em> album remains the source of much controversy, but the Rangemaster was also a key element of Rory Gallagher’s late-Sixties rig that similarly redefined blues guitar tone during the British blues revival, thanks to its marvelous midrange and gritty germanium transistor grind. </p> <p>Numerous clones are available today, including the Analog Man Beano Boost and Keeley Java Boost. </p> <p><img src="http://dl.guitarworld.com/gearphotos/Rangemaster.jpg" width="500" /> </p> <p><strong>3. Boss BD-2 Blues Driver</strong> </p> <p>Not since the late Seventies, when the Ibanez Tube Screamer and Boss OD-1 made their debut, has a mass-produced overdrive pedal won over the great unwashed and cork-sniffing tone snobs alike. The BD-2 delivers a wide variety of overdrive tones, from creamy to crunchy, with personality that ranges from retro smooth to modern blues-rock raunch. </p> <p><img src="http://dl.guitarworld.com/gearphotos/BossBluesDriver.jpg" width="500" /></p> <p><strong>2. Blackstone Appliances MOSFET Overdrive</strong> </p> <p>This pedal’s nameplate and crinkle finish may have the retro-cool vibe of a Thirties toaster, but underneath the hood lies a modern circuit that uses small-signal MOSFETs and an unconventional input stage to cook up distortion and overdrive with rich harmonic overtones that will melt your face off like a million-watt microwave. </p> <p>“It’s heavy stuff, not the sound of a popcorn machine,” says Billy Gibbons, who used the Blackstone in tasteful excess on several new ZZ Top tunes.</p> <p><img src="/files/imce-images/Blackstone.jpeg" width="620" height="472" alt="Blackstone.jpeg" /></p> <p><em>Blackstone photo by William Baeck, <a href="http://williambaeck.com/WilliamBaeck.com/Home.html">williambaeck.com</a></em></p> <p><strong>1. Analog Man King of Tone</strong> </p> <p>With a two-year waiting list, the Analog Man King of Tone is one of the most sought-after overdrive pedals, and for a very good reason: it provides a clean boost that preserves a guitar’s tone, making it sound bigger, badder and more bodacious, with just the right amount of natural-sounding distortion. </p> <p>Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Gary Clark Jr. and Buddy Miller are just a handful of the pros who have discovered that the King of Tone truly rules.</p> <p><img src="http://dl.guitarworld.com/gearphotos/AnalogMan.jpg" width="500" /></p> http://www.guitarworld.com/la-grunge-top-10-blues-approved-overdrive-distortion-pedals#comments Boss EHX Electro-Harmonix Fulltone Ibanez Kion October 2012 PaulC 2012 Guitar World Lists Effects News Features Gear Magazine Mon, 29 Jun 2015 14:30:09 +0000 Chris Gill 16822 at http://www.guitarworld.com How to Buy a Fuzz Box: A Guide for the First-Time Buyer http://www.guitarworld.com/how-buy-fuzz-box-guide-first-time-buyer <!--paging_filter--><p>Is there anything more luscious than a Big Muff? </p> <p>Who can resist those hairy, in-your-face mouthfuls of fuzz? It’s the box guitarists dream about plugging into all day and night. No wonder Electro-Harmonix named the Big Muff Pi distortion pedal after it. </p> <p>But the Pi ain’t the only box in town. In fact, there are probably more than 300 models of overdrive, distortion and fuzz pedals in production today. How do you decide which one is right for you? Well, good readers, it’s time to practice your licks and get ready to blow some tweeters as we show you 10 things you should know before you buy a fuzz box.</p> <p><strong>01. What’s Your Flavor?</strong></p> <p>Distortion pedals generally come in one of three varieties: overdrive, distortion and fuzz. Overdrive provides a gain boost that pushes an amp harder and causes it to distort. Distortion processes the guitar’s signal and transforms it into a screaming, vicious beast before it hits the amp. And fuzz produces an extreme form of distortion called square-wave clipping: like a Sixties barbershop, everything that goes into it come out with a flat top. Note: Many manufacturers use these terms interchangeably, so don’t ignore overdrive or fuzz boxes when you want distortion and vice versa.</p> <p><strong>02. Fuzz Factors</strong></p> <p>When auditioning a pedal, make sure you play chords as well as single-note riffs and leads. As true fuzz pedals produce exaggerated distortion, they generally can’t handle chords other than a fifth diad, familiarly known as a power chord. But that doesn’t mean you should avoid fuzz altogether. The best fuzz boxes can make a single note sound like a 2,000- pound bee plugged into a wall of Marshalls, while the worst pedals will make your guitar sound like an elephant dropping a 2,000-pound load of dung.</p> <p><strong>03. No Gain, No Pain</strong></p> <p>If you plan on using a distortion box for playing lead, make sure that it also provides a good amount of gain boost, otherwise your guitar signal may disappear faster than Michael Jackson evading a summons. Extra gain can increase sustain, which is a good thing, but excessive gain may result in noise, feedback and hiss…which can also be a good thing. At the very least, the gain control should provide enough boost to match the guitar’s volume level when the effect is bypassed. Many players use overdrive pedals like the Ibanez Tube Screamer to boost the guitar’s gain for solos.</p> <p><strong>04. What’s the Frequency, Kenneth?</strong></p> <p>With the exception of a handful of overdrive pedals like the Klon Centaur, most distortion boxes boost or cut EQ frequencies and affect the guitar’s tone. Many pedals sound wicked when you’re playing by yourself, but their sound virtually vanishes when you use them with a band, and you end up looking like the world’s worst air guitarist. If the pedal you’re auditioning has tone controls, dial in a sound you like, then have a friend jam along with you. If the tone doesn’t cut through, you may want to consider another pedal.</p> <p><strong>05. Avoid the Idiot Setting</strong></p> <p>While many pedals sound great with every knob turned up to 11, some pedals, like the Z-Vex Fuzz Factory, generate such extreme distortion that they don’t produce any sound at all when everything is maxed. The best tones usually lurk in those elusive in-between settings, so take your time and tweak those knobs. Start with the knobs turned down and work your way up.</p> <p><strong>06. Talk Dirty to Me</strong></p> <p>A lot of distortion pedals sound best when the amp is dialed to a clean setting. But many stomp boxes, especially overdrive and fuzz effects, sound better when the amp has a dirty edge. Experiment with various amp distortion settings while you mess around with the pedal’s knobs. Get rough with that amp; no one will slap you or call you a perv.</p> <p><strong>07. Crashing by Design</strong></p> <p>They don’t call them stomp boxes for nothing. Look for a pedal that is built like a tank and will support your weight even if you should balloon to John Popper-like proportions. Control knobs should be easy to reach and see, but they shouldn’t be placed where you can mistakenly step on them and disrupt your carefully dialed-in settings. The bypass switch should engage with a noticeable click, or the pedal should have an LED that lets you know when the effect is on.</p> <p><strong>08. Battery Aggravations</strong></p> <p>Trust me—James Hetfield wasn’t singing about the Duracells in Kirk Hammett’s Boss distortion in “Battery.” You may think your pedal is going to last all night because you put the Energizer Bunny in it, but remember that rabbits have a habit of dying when it’s least convenient for you. If you plan to use your pedal onstage, buy one that can be powered with AC. You may need to shell out a few extra bucks for an AC adapter, but in the long run it’s a lot cheaper than what you’ll spend replacing batteries.</p> <p><strong>09. Drastic Bypass</strong></p> <p>Look for pedals that offer true-bypass circuitry. This feature removes the pedal’s electronic circuit when the effect is switched off, letting your guitar signal pass through the pedal without affecting its tone or gain. Effects without true bypass bogart tone like your bass player sharing his stash, and when you chain several of these pedals together your tone will be as mighty as an outfielder on steroids. If someone offers you a triple bypass, leave the store immediately—you probably walked into Surgery Center by mistake.</p> <p><strong>10. Ignore the Tone Snobs</strong></p> <p>Tube-amp elitists may declare that everything solid-state is crap, yet they exalt the tones of players like Jeff Beck, Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan, each of whom relied heavily on solid-state Rat, Fuzz Face and Tube Screamer pedals, respectively, to create their signature sounds. Fuzz fanatics argue at length about the virtues of germanium versus silicon transistors. Don’t obsess about minute electronic circuitry details; let your ears be your guide. There’s nothing wrong with using a pedal with an integrated- circuit design if it sounds sweeter to you than an expensive tube-equipped stomp box.</p> http://www.guitarworld.com/how-buy-fuzz-box-guide-first-time-buyer#comments fuzz Effects Blogs News Features Gear Magazine Mon, 29 Jun 2015 14:10:04 +0000 Chris Gill 10906 at http://www.guitarworld.com Zero to Sixties in Five Pedals: Five Modern Effects that Conjure Far-Out, Vintage Tones http://www.guitarworld.com/zero-60s-five-pedals-five-modern-effects-conjure-far-out-vintage-tones <!--paging_filter--><p>Many guitar players—at some point—can't help but fall under the spell of the sounds found on classic rock albums of the mid- to late Sixties. </p> <p>Players like Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page, Pete Townshend and Robby Krieger were synonymous with wah, fuzz, univibe and/or tremolo. Throw George Harrison and Brian Jones into the mix and you get sitars and other sound- (and mind-) altering effects. They were always experimenting, changing things up, trying to outdo each other. </p> <p>Modern players who are obsessed with classic Sixties rock sounds can glue their eyes to eBay, waiting for pricey, hard-to-find vintage gear to show up. Or they can check out these five easy-to-find, modern effect pedals, as chosen by a group of <em>Guitar World</em> staffers including Gear Editor Paul Riario. </p> <p><strong>Vox V846-HW Hand-Wired Wah Wah</strong></p> <p>Stop, children, what's that sound? ... Well, if we're talking about the Sixties (and we are), it's probably Jimi Hendrix playing "Voodoo Child (Slight Return)" on a Fender Strat through a Vox V846 Wah Wah pedal.</p> <p>Vox actually created the first wah pedal in the Sixties, spawning an army of imitators that continues to grow, NAMM Show after NAMM Show. Back in the day, the Vox wah and its competitors found their way into the hands—or in this case, the feet—of countless top-notch rock guitarists, from Hendrix to Jeff Beck to Jimmy Page to Eric Clapton. But again, Vox was there first. </p> <p>Just a few years ago (2011), the company issued its V846-HW Hand-Wired Wah Wah Pedal, which does a fine job of capturing the tone, feel and weight of the original Vox pedal. Every component in the new model—inductors, resistors, capacitors and the potentiometer—is carefully selected. And like its name suggests, each unit features hand-wired turret board construction with no printed circuit boards. The only difference is a true bypass, a handy update for modern players. </p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.voxamps.com/v846hw">Check out this pedal at voxamps.com.</a></strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/V8dx4oS9FVI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>Dunlop Jimi Hendrix Fuzz Face Distortion</strong></p> <p>The Sixties may have started out clean, but by the end of the decade there were some pretty gnarly distortion and fuzz sounds filling clubs and arenas around the world. </p> <p>Among the most distinctive fuzz tones of the late Sixties undoubtedly belonged to Jimi Hendrix, who utilized a Dallas Arbiter Fuzz Face to add that extra layer of dirt to his already gritty brand of hard blues. Unless you're quick on the draw with your eBay bids or simply owned one back in the day, you won't have much luck finding Hendrix's original fuzz source these days, but fortunately Dunlop has produced a faithful replica in the Dunlop Jimi Hendrix Fuzz Face.</p> <p>Hand-wired and built around a BC108 silicon transistor, the Hendrix Fuzz Face is nothing less than a meticulous reproduction of the original pedal, one you'll need if you'll want to summon your inner-voodoo child.</p> <p>And if a Tone Bender is more your thing, check out the <a href="http://www.williamsaudio.co.uk/Tonebender-MK11-Professional.html">OC81D Williams Vintage Tone MK11 Professional</a>, as used by Ben King, a former Yardbirds guitarist. </p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.jimdunlop.com/product/jhf1-jimi-hendrix-fuzz-face">Check out this pedal at jimdunlop.com.</a></strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/18bBbNeMyhA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>Electro-Harmonix Ravish Sitar</strong></p> <p>You're in a Sixties cover band. The rowdy, drunken audience is clamoring for your "Paint It, Black" / "Norwegian Wood" medley. Do you just play the sitar parts on your Fender Esquire and smile knowingly, like, "Yeah, I know these notes were originally played on a sitar, but what the hell am I supposed to do?" Well, yes, you could do that. But you also could check out Electro-Harmonix's Ravish Sitar pedal. </p> <p>As we say in a recent <a href="http://store.guitarworld.com/collections/buyers-guide/products/buyers-guide-2013/?&amp;utm_source=guitarworld.com&amp;utm_medium=article&amp;utm_campaign=60sPedals">Guitar World Buyer's Guide</a>, it's the "world's best sitar emulation for guitar. With the Ravish Sitar pedal, Electro-Harmonix has streamlined the essence of the sitar into a compact enclosure that offers a polyphonic lead voice a tunable sympathetic string drones that dramatically react to your playing with adjustable timbre."</p> <p>And besides all that, guitarists can finally tackle "Bangla Dhun," Ravi Shankar's 15-minute Indian-music recital that kicks off <em>The Concert for Bangladhesh</em>. Or not! </p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.ehx.com/products/ravish">Check out this pedal at exh.com.</a></strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/4GZGDYJ77xA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>Dry Bell Vibe Machine V-1</strong></p> <p>You'll find vibe effects all over the music of Jimi Hendrix and Procol Harem's Robin Trower, a fact that, in and of itself, makes a good vibe pedal an essential part of any Sixties guitar rig. </p> <p>There's no shortage of great vibe units to choose from, but for our money, the Dry Bell Vibe Machine is the top of the heap. Not only is it among the more compact options, it allows for maximum tone control with its "Bright" switch, avoiding the sound-dampening side effects of some of the other pedals on the market.</p> <p>If you want to nail that Hendrix-at-Woodstock tone, adding this little beauty in your arsenal certainly can't hurt. What it can't help? Your nerves playing "The Star-Spangled Banner" in front of a few hundred-thousand fans.</p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.drybell.com/vibe_machine_v1_en.html">Check out this pedal at drybell.com.</a></strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/YeMgNpS1EmM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>Fulltone Supa-Trem 1</strong></p> <p>As <em>Guitar World</em> has said in past reviews, Fulltone's Supa-Trem 1 is a tremolo pedal that lives up to its name. As you can tell by the photo in the gallery below, it's a simple, basic, gimmick-free effect that inadvertently captures the look of Sixties pedals while working hard to capture the sound. </p> <p>From personal experience, it's also a rugged pedal that can take a licking and keep on waving. It features a footswitchable Half/Full speed footswitch that stays in tempo and lets you channel some authentic-sounding Leslie-like moves. Another footswitch lets you choose between "Soft" smooth wavering or "Hard" square-wave machine-gun stutter. There's also an internal trimmer to fine tune the feel of the waveform.</p> <p>As a side note, Sixties rocker John Fogerty uses one of these pedals today to recreate his powerful CCR-era tremolo effects.</p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.fulltone.com/products/supa-trem-1">Check out this pedal at fulltone.com</a>.</strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/o7wfrMUXywo" 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 class="field-item even"> <a href="/eric-clapton">Eric Clapton</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/beatles">The Beatles</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/george-harrison">George Harrison</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/jeff-beck">Jeff Beck</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/cream">Cream</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/jimmy-page">Jimmy Page</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/robby-krieger">Robby Krieger</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/zero-60s-five-pedals-five-modern-effects-conjure-far-out-vintage-tones#comments Damian Fanelli Dry Bell Dunlop EHX Electro-Harmonix Fulltone George Harrison Jimi Hendrix VOX Guitar World Lists Effects News Features Gear Mon, 29 Jun 2015 12:16:27 +0000 Damian Fanelli, Josh Hart 16374 at http://www.guitarworld.com Pigtronix Releases Infinity Looper 2.0 Firmware and New Infinity Website http://www.guitarworld.com/pigtronix-releases-infinity-looper-20-firmware-and-infinity-web-site <!--paging_filter--><p>Pigtronix has announced the release of 2.0 Firmware for its Infinity Looper pedal. </p> <p>The company also has launched an interactive tutorial and support website for the pedal. </p> <p><strong>Included in the Infinity 2.0 firmware:</strong></p> <p>• 50 presets (up to 100 loops maximum)<br /> • Minimum Loop Time - 10ms shortest loop<br /> • Alternate Remote Switch options - Stutter, Instant Erase, Vari-speed<br /> • MIDI CC overhaul - Complete MIDI control of all functions and parameter selection<br /> • Vari-speed - Change pitch of loops by any musical interval over a three octave range<br /> • Reverse Playback - Each Loop can be individually toggled between forwards and reverse<br /> • Advanced expression pedal mapping - Foot control of Vari-speed, loop aging and loop volume<br /> v"Active" MIDI Tracking - accurately track even the most unstable MIDI clock sources</p> <p>The new Infinity website features an array of tutorial videos—featuring NYC loop-master Teddy Kumpel (Joe Jackson, Rickie Lee Jones)—that walk users through all the pedal's functions. </p> <p>An interactive manual allows visitors to contribute questions and add to the knowledge base. In addition, the artist section features inspiring looping videos by a wide range of musicians including Doug Wimbish (Living Colour), Eric Krasno (Lettuce, Soulive), Joseph Arthur, Michael League/Bob Lanzetti (Snarky Puppy), Dick Lövgren (Meshuggah), Julie Slick (Adrian Belew), Evan Marien, Yolanda Charles and others. </p> <p><strong>You can check out the new website—and learn more about the firmware—<a href="http://www.pigtronix.com/infinity/">right here.</a></strong></p> http://www.guitarworld.com/pigtronix-releases-infinity-looper-20-firmware-and-infinity-web-site#comments Pigtronix Effects News Gear Fri, 26 Jun 2015 19:50:25 +0000 Guitar World Staff 24828 at http://www.guitarworld.com We Came As Romans: Exclusive Gear Tour with Joshua Moore and Lou Cotton — Video http://www.guitarworld.com/we-came-romans-exclusive-gear-tour-video <!--paging_filter--><p>We Came As Romans are out on the road at the moment—with a very busy July ahead of them. </p> <p>But that didn't prevent WCAR guitarists Joshua Moore and Lou Cotton from showing <em>Guitar World</em> their live rig/gear setup. </p> <p>Check out the brand-new video below.</p> <p>For more about We Came As Romans, their current tour dates and their new self-titled album, visit <a href="http://wecameasromans.com/">wecameasromans.com.</a></p> <p><strong>For more exclusive <em>Guitar World</em> videos, <a href="https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqHkFMEmOPFO3ahcrrBAj4w">be sure to follow GW on YouTube right here.</a></strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/HNH98vJAEX4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> http://www.guitarworld.com/we-came-romans-exclusive-gear-tour-video#comments Gear Tour Joshua Moore Lou Cotton We Came As Romans Videos News Gear Fri, 26 Jun 2015 19:22:03 +0000 Guitar World Staff 24829 at http://www.guitarworld.com Review: Music Man Stingray 4 Neck Through Bass — Video http://www.guitarworld.com/review-music-man-stingray-4-neck-through <!--paging_filter--><p><strong><em>PLATINUM AWARD WINNER</em></strong></p> <p>While set neck basses have their place in history, generally the most popular models for bass players are either bolt-on neck instruments (like the Fender Precision and Jazz Bass and the Music Man StingRay) or neck-through-body designs (like the Rickenbacker 4001, Gibson Thunderbird and various Alembic and Spector models). </p> <p>Each version has its advantages, but now Ernie Ball Music Man has widened the spectrum even further with the introduction of the StingRay Neck Through model. </p> <p>Identical in almost every way to the beloved bolt-on versions of the StingRay bass other than its neck-through-body construction, the StingRay Neck Through provides different tonal and dynamic personality.</p> <p><strong>FEATURES:</strong> Music Man offers the StingRay Neck Through in a wide variety of configurations. Players can choose 21-fret four-string or 22-fret five-string models with single humbucking, dual humbucking or single-coil (neck) and humbucking pickup configurations, and the four-string/single-humbucking version is available either with the classic two-band (treble, bass) active EQ controls or with the three-band active EQ (treble, middle, bass) featured on all of the other versions. Our evaluation example was a four-string model with three-band EQ.</p> <p>From the front, the StingRay 4 Neck Through looks identical to the bolt-on version of the StingRay 4. The telltale difference is only notable when looking at the back, which reveals the lack of a heel, replaced by a smooth transition where the body meets the neck. High gloss polyester finish also covers the entire back of the neck as well as the body (in contrast to the gunstock oil and hand-rubbed special wax blend used to finish the standard StingRay’s maple neck). Also, the StingRay Neck Through is only available with a rosewood fingerboard (no maple or fretless fingerboard options). </p> <p>Construction consists of a three-piece maple neck through design with ash body “wings.” The neck has a 34-inch scale, 11-inch radius, flat C-shaped profile and 1 5/8-inch nut width. The nut features Music Man’s patented compensated design, and the truss rod is adjusted via an easily accessible wheel located above the highest fret. In addition to three-band EQ, the StingRay features a volume control for the active preamp circuit. All of the hardware is chrome plated, including the hardened steel bridge plate (with stainless steel saddles), control knobs and Schaller BM tuners with tapered posts.</p> <p><strong>PERFORMANCE:</strong> Perhaps the best way to describe the difference between the StingRay Neck Through and the standard StingRay is that the neck-through version sounds bigger. The low end has more body, the treble has more presence and its sustain is virtually endless. The attack may not be as prominent—instead notes have more roundness and warmth—but it still can sound very aggressive. Our example came from the factory with new Ernie Ball Slinky Flatwound strings, but the bass delivered very satisfying growl with plenty of high-frequency bite. The three-band EQ controls can dial in an incredible range of tones and provide perfect string-to-string balance with almost any bass amp or speaker configuration.</p> <p>While the StingRay Neck Through’s versatile tones are absolutely killer, what really seals the deal is how solid it feels and how incredible it plays, particularly at the uppermost frets. The rock-solid, flex-free neck is by far the most comfortable and fast bass neck I’ve ever played, facilitating precise fretting and runs that often feel uncomfortable to play on classic bolt-on instruments. The frets are wide and just high enough to provide a solid anchor without getting in the way when performing slides, hammer-ons or pull-offs. The Ernie Ball flatwound strings added to the playing comfort, of course, but when flatwounds sound this punchy, bright and round, there’s little need to use roundwounds.</p> <p><strong>LIST PRICE:</strong> Four-string SR4 3EQ, $2,820; five-string SR5 3EQ, $3,070<br /> <strong>MANUFACTURER:</strong> Ernie Ball Music Man, <a href="http://www.music-man.com/instruments/basses/stingray-4-through-neck.html">music-man.com</a></p> <p>Three-piece maple neck-through-body construction provides wider frequency response and eliminates the cumbersome neck heel to facilitate playing the entire fretboard. </p> <p>The active preamp system with three-band EQ delivers a wide range of tones ideal for any style of music and balancing string-to-string response with any amp.</p> <p><strong>THE BOTTOM LINE:</strong> The bolt-on version of the Music Man StingRay remains an attractive classic, but the new Neck Through model expands its tonal versatility while providing a more solid feel and enhanced playability.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/gkjuQ_D2YAE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> http://www.guitarworld.com/review-music-man-stingray-4-neck-through#comments August 2015 Music Man Videos Bass Guitars News Gear Magazine Fri, 26 Jun 2015 15:57:43 +0000 Chris Gill, Video by Matt Scharfglass 24761 at http://www.guitarworld.com Review: Bogner Burnley, Harlow and Wessex Effect Pedals — Videos http://www.guitarworld.com/review-bogner-burnley-harlow-and-wessex-pedals <!--paging_filter--><p><strong><em>PLATINUM AWARD WINNER</em></strong></p> <p>Names like Leo Fender, Jim Marshall and Ted McCarty are rightfully revered in the guitar community. </p> <p>Rupert Neve is another luminary whose name belongs in that company, but he’s not as well known because his contributions and influence have more to do with recorded guitar sound than the usual day-to-day playing or performing. </p> <p>His Neve 1073 and 1081 mic preamp/EQ modules introduced in the Seventies are probably responsible for more classic guitar recordings and tones than any other single other piece of gear short of perhaps the Shure SM57 mic.</p> <p>Reinhold Bogner, a modern-day legend who has made his own significant contributions to guitar tone, recently joined forces with Rupert Neve to produce a trio of pedals—the Burnley, Harlow and Wessex—that take an entirely different approach to overdrive and distortion. </p> <p>These pedals are inspired by the dynamic and detailed sounds of classic Neve mixing consoles, which featured custom transformer-coupled inputs and outputs. Neve designed special custom audio transformers for these pedals, which deliver studio-quality sound, dynamics and tonal dimension that transcend the typical performance capabilities of a standard stomp box.</p> <p><strong>FEATURES:</strong> Each of the three pedals offers its own distinct personality provided by unique transformer designs for each model. The Bogner Burnley is a dedicated distortion pedal with level, gain and tone controls and a Fat/Tight switch. The Wessex is an overdrive pedal featuring level, gain, treble and bass controls and an Enhance/Normal switch. The Harlow is described by Bogner as “Boost with Bloom” and provides level, tone and bloom controls. </p> <p>All three pedals share a variety of common characteristics and features. A “jewel light” indicator illuminates red when the pedal is engaged and turns progressively bluer depending on playing dynamics and the guitar’s output level. Other common features include true bypass switching, mono inputs and outputs and battery or 9VDC power (50mA or more). The compact housings are built like tanks, and an optional bubinga hardwood top panel is available for an additional $60.</p> <p><strong>PERFORMANCE:</strong> The sound quality and performance of all three pedals is on another level compared to the average overdrive and distortion pedal. Whereas many overdrive and distortion pedals boost everything going into it, including noise, these pedals kept the noise from a particularly troublesome single-coil guitar at bay while increasing the level of notes played quite impressively. Each pedal has its own tonal personality, but it’s a personality that complements the sound of your guitar and amp rig rather than dominating it. </p> <p>The Wessex offers the widest variety of tones and textures thanks to its individual treble and bass EQ controls. Clean boost is produced by cranking up the level and keeping gain at low settings, and as the gain control is turned up the personality changes from slight grit to aggressive crunch, ending up just shy of full-on high-gain distortion. The Enhance setting boosts both bass and treble without scooping out mids to maintain full-boded tone and expressive midrange. This is the most versatile pedal of the bunch, and I recommend it as a first purchase for guitarists who can only afford one.</p> <p>The Burnley is a very aggressively voiced distortion pedal that can boost both gain and output level quite significantly, but the tone never gets over the top and remains musically useful throughout its entire range. The Fat setting produces fat, rich, slightly compressed lead tones, making the Burnley a great choice for a solo boost pedal, particularly for players who love smooth, singing sustain. The Tight setting is better for rhythm playing and single note lines where a little more dynamic edge and responsiveness is preferred. The Tone control thickens up lower midrange frequencies to give the overall tone more heft.</p> <p>The Harlow boost pedal provides the most distinctive effect of the group. With the bloom control rolled all the way off, it produces a range of overdrive tones from clean boost to crushed glass crunch, but as the bloom control is turned up the tone becomes more aggressive. The effect is similar to a combination of tube amp sag and a compressor pushed until it begins to breathe, but it is much more dynamic, responsive and detailed. It’s almost like extreme fuzz, but the notes are much more musical and refined.</p> <p><strong>LIST PRICE:</strong> $269.99 (each, $329.99 for bubinga front panel)<br /> <strong>MANUFACTURER:</strong> Bogner Amplification, <a href="http://www.bogneramplification.com/">bogneramplification.com</a></p> <p>Each model features its own unique custom transformer designed by Rupert Neve to provide incredibly dynamic and detailed boost, overdrive and distortion effects.<br /> The Burnley includes a Fat/Tight switch that provides a selection of slightly compressed lead tones or dynamically responsive rhythm and solo textures.</p> <p>The Harlow’s bloom control radically changes the personality of clean boost and overdrive crunch to aggressive fuzz- and compressor-like sag.</p> <p>The Wessex’s treble and bass tone controls and Enhance/Normal switch deliver a wide variety of textures from clean boost to hard rock distortion.</p> <p><strong>THE BOTTOM LINE:</strong> Bogner’s Burnley, Harlow and Wessex are studio-quality pedals that greatly expand your rig’s tonal and textural range, providing incredibly expressive overdrive and distortion tones with impressive dynamics and noise-free performance.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/mQgsJDqSBCI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> http://www.guitarworld.com/review-bogner-burnley-harlow-and-wessex-pedals#comments August 2015 Bogner Videos Effects News Gear Magazine Thu, 25 Jun 2015 21:20:54 +0000 Chris Gill, Video by Paul Riario 24759 at http://www.guitarworld.com TC Electronic Introduces PolyTune 2 BlackLight Tuner — Video http://www.guitarworld.com/tc-electronic-introduces-polytune-2-blacklight-tuner-video <!--paging_filter--><p>TC Electronic announces PolyTune 2 BlackLight, the new ultra-cool and visually stunning addition to the company's line of polyphonic tuners.</p> <p>PolyTune 2 BlackLight sports everything that's made TC Electronic's polyphonic tuners the new tuning standard on pedal boards. </p> <p>The polyphonic tuning mode that lets you tune all strings at once, the super fast chromatic tuner and the ultra-precise strobe tuner are all there, and now they are housed inside a black metallic enclosure with a new super-bright blue-and-white LED display.</p> <p><strong>Features</strong></p> <p>• Polyphonic Tuner<br /> • Chromatic Tuner (+/- 0.5 cent)<br /> • Strobe Tuner (+/- 0.1 cent)<br /> • Super sleek black enclosure<br /> • Stunning blue and white LED display with ambient light sensor</p> <p>With extra features like dedicated Bass, Drop-D and Capo tuning modes, plus up to 5-semitones of flat tunings, this tuner is sure to up the wow-factor of every rig.</p> <p>For more information, visit <a href="http://www.tcelectronic.com/polytune-2-blacklight/?utm_medium=email&amp;utm_campaign=TCE+PR+PolyTune+2+BlackLight&amp;utm_content=TCE+PR+PolyTune+2+BlackLight+CID_54df28286c4c34724b3692fc38d70081&amp;utm_source=Campaign%20Monitor&amp;utm_term=PolyTune%202%20BlackLight%20Website" target="_blank">TCElectronic.com</a>.</p> <p>

Available: Late June in Europe and late July in the U.S.
<br /> Price: $99.99 </p> <div><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/X8cImW17xWE" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="365" width="620"></iframe></div> http://www.guitarworld.com/tc-electronic-introduces-polytune-2-blacklight-tuner-video#comments TC Electronic Accessories Videos News Gear Thu, 25 Jun 2015 15:04:55 +0000 Guitar World Staff 24808 at http://www.guitarworld.com Mass Effect: The Top 50 Stomp Boxes, Devices and Processors of All Time http://www.guitarworld.com/mass-effect-top-50-stomp-boxes-devices-and-processors-all-time <!--paging_filter--><p>Has any piece of musical equipment proliferated more, or more rapidly, than the humble electric guitar effect unit? </p> <p>Though there is no official tally, suffice it to say that thousands of stomp boxes, effect devices and processors have been created for the electric guitar over the past 60 years (and that’s not including rackmount effects). Conceivably, more than half of those devices are distortion, fuzz and overdrive effects.</p> <p>So how did we come up with a list of the top 50 electric guitar effects of all time? Actually, it was easy, as most of these stomp boxes and devices turn up in the pages of this magazine on a regular basis every time we ask artists what they use in the studio and onstage.</p> <p>Other effects got the nod for being the first of their kind (like the DeArmond Tremolo Control, which dates back to the Forties and was the first optional effect device) while a few passed muster for being undeniably cool or influential — even if they’re so rare that it will cost you a few thousand bucks to score one on eBay.</p> <p>Popularity also was a critical factor in our choices, although we generally passed over a few best-selling reissues or boutique clones in favor of the real deal. So even though the Bubba Bob Buttcrack Tube Overdrive may sound more soulful than an original Tube Screamer, if it’s little more than a copy with slightly upgraded components, it didn’t make the cut. </p> <p>If you love effects like we do, we hope you'll find this top-50 list a useful guide to discovering the classic effect boxes that have shaped the guitar sounds of rock, metal, blues, punk and many other styles. And if you're like us, it will undoubtedly compel you to plunk down a chunk of cash for a collectible pedal or two on eBay. Don't say you weren't warned.</p> http://www.guitarworld.com/mass-effect-top-50-stomp-boxes-devices-and-processors-all-time#comments 2011 Articles Boss GW Archive Ibanez July 2011 Roland Guitar World Lists Effects July News Features Gear Magazine Thu, 25 Jun 2015 12:25:16 +0000 Chris Gill 17196 at http://www.guitarworld.com Steve Lukather Demos Signature Ernie Ball Music Man Luke III Guitar — Video http://www.guitarworld.com/steve-lukather-demos-signature-ernie-ball-music-man-luke-iii-guitar-video <!--paging_filter--><p> In this new video, guitarist Steve Lukather walks you through his signature Luke III—also known as the LIII—model guitar from Ernie Ball Music Man. </p> <p>For more about this guitar, check out the specs below and visit its page on <a href="http://www.music-man.com/instruments/guitars/luke-III.html/">music-man.com.</a></p> <p><strong>SPECIFICATIONS:</strong></p> <p><strong>Model:</strong> Luke III<br /> <strong>Size:</strong> 12-3/16" wide, 1-3/4" thick, 36-7/16" long (31.0 cm wide, 4.5 cm thick, 92.6 cm long)<br /> <strong>Weight:</strong> 7 lbs, 8 oz (3.40 kg) - varies slightly<br /> <strong>Body Wood:</strong> Alder<br /> <strong>Body Finish:</strong> High gloss polyester<br /> <strong>Body Colors:</strong> Black, Bodhi Blue<br /> <strong>Bridge:</strong> Standard - Music Man® floating vintage tremolo of chrome plated, hardened steel with bent steel saddles<br /> <strong>Scale Length:</strong> 25-1/2" (64.8 cm)<br /> <strong>Neck Radius:</strong> 12" (30.5 cm)<br /> <strong>Headstock Size:</strong> Only 5-7/8" (14.9 cm) long<br /> <strong>Frets:</strong> 22 - Low profile, wide<br /> <strong>Neck Width:</strong> 1-5/8" (41.3 mm) at nut, 2-3/16" (55.6 mm) at last fret<br /> <strong>Neck Wood:</strong> Select roasted maple neck<br /> <strong>Fingerboard:</strong> Rosewood<br /> <strong>Neck Finish:</strong> Gunstock oil and hand-rubbed special wax blend<br /> <strong>Neck Colors:</strong> Standard – Natural with finished headstock<br /> <strong>Tuning Machines:</strong> Schaller M6-IND locking<br /> <strong>Truss Rod:</strong> Adjustable - no component or string removal<br /> <strong>Neck Attachment:</strong> 5 bolts - perfect alignment with no shifting; Sculpted neck joint allows smooth access to higher frets<br /> <strong>Electronic Shielding:</strong> Graphite acrylic resin coated body cavity and aluminum lined control cover<br /> <strong>Controls:</strong> Custom Music Man® active preamp; push/push volume for gain boost, 500kohm passive tone - .022µF tone capacitor<br /> <strong>Switching:</strong> 5-way lever pickup selector<br /> <strong>Pickups:</strong> Standard - HH with 2 DiMarzio Transition humbucking; Optional - HSS with 1 DiMarzio <strong>Transition humbucking;</strong> 2 DiMarzio custom single coil<br /> <strong>Left Handed:</strong> No<br /> <strong>Strings:</strong> 9p-11p-16p-24w-32w-42w (RPS 9 Slinkys #2239)</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/_1oZTFbV8IQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> http://www.guitarworld.com/steve-lukather-demos-signature-ernie-ball-music-man-luke-iii-guitar-video#comments Ernie Ball Music Man Steve Lukather Videos Electric Guitars News Gear Wed, 24 Jun 2015 20:21:15 +0000 Guitar World Staff 24804 at http://www.guitarworld.com