Back in the January 2013 issue of GW, we took a first look at the Peavey AT-200 Auto-Tune guitar.
In less than a year, Antares, the company behind the AT-200’s built-in Auto-Tune software technology, has significantly upgraded the system’s available features and ease of use with a variety of affordable software upgrade packs.
In addition to the String Tune and Solid-Tune functions provided by the original AT-200, Antares now includes upgraded Auto-Tune for Guitar software that adds a variety of alternate tunings, virtual capo settings, and guitar/pickup modeling sounds that are instantly accessible via the software’s Fret Control feature.
I took a look at the fully loaded Complete Pack, but Essential and Pro Pack options are also available for guitarists who don’t need or can’t afford the full monty.
The new Antares software packs upload to the AT-200 via an iPad or a computer with a MIDI Y-cable/Peavey AT-200B breakout box and a MIDI interface. The Complete Pack offers every currently available feature, which includes 13 alternate tunings, eight doubling settings, a virtual capo covering a range of 12 half-steps up/down, and 10 guitar and pickup modeling settings.
The Pro Pack offers nine alternate tunings, four doubling settings, the same 12 half-step up/down virtual capo range and six guitar/pickup models, while the Essential Pack includes five alternate tunings, one doubling setting, a two half-step up/half-step down virtual capo range, plus five half-step down baritone settings and three guitar/pickup models.
The Complete Pack’s alternate tunings include popular tunings like DADGAD, drop D, several open tunings and even bass tunings. Doubling settings provide various pitch-shifted effects from 12-string guitars and polyphonic octave up/down to fourth and fifth up. The guitar/pickup modeling feature includes outstanding emulations of various humbucker, single-coil, acoustic and bass tones.
Whereas the initial release of the Peavey AT-200 Auto-Tune guitar required some rather complicated chord fingerings to select certain alternate tunings, the new software’s Fret Control feature significantly simplifies the process of selecting tunings as well as virtual capo and guitar/pickup modeling settings.
Now all you need to do to select settings is press down the guitar’s volume knob to engage the string-tune function and pluck a single note. Notes on the low E string select modeling settings, while the A string controls alternate tunings, the D string controls doubling and transposition, the G and B strings control the virtual capo, and the high E string accesses presets. Fret Control makes the AT-200 much easier to use onstage and is worth the upgrade price alone.
List Price $299
Manufacturer Antares Audio Technologies, antarestech.com
The Fret Control feature lets guitarists select different settings simply by engaging the string-tune function and plucking a single note.
New guitar/pickup modeling settings provide access to a wide variety of humbucker, single-coil, bass and acoustic guitar tones.
The Bottom Line
Antares Auto-Tune Complete Pack software significantly upgrades the versatility, ease of use and sonic palette of the game-changing Peavey AT-200 Auto-Tune guitar.