Finding the ideal gift for the guitarist is a tricky thing to do for someone not entirely sure what they’re looking for or at.
Sometimes just listening to the blah blah blah of your average guitarist as he/she talks about about that new fangled gadget or wotsamacallit can lead you nowhere.
Anyway here are a few of my favourite gadgets that came on to the market this year.
A lot are computer based, ie USB interfaces – they allow guitar to be recorded and also have the added bonus of using laptop or desktop as an effects processor.
I’ve looked at guitar gadgets and toys under £100
Perfect for the laptop or desktop musician keen on getting their guitar chops into their computer recording setup.
Or simply using their laptop as an effects unit.
The POD Studio™ GX combines the stunning sounds of POD Farm™ plug-in with a powerful USB interface.
GX is a rock-solid interface that’s really easy to use. It features a super-quiet 1/4-inch guitar input, a 1/8-inch headphone/line output and a volume knob for instant, straightforward recording.
The G2M™ is a simple-to-use, highly effective, guitar-to-MIDI converter. It is “Universal” because it doesn’t need a special pick-up mounted on your guitar, but instead simply connects to your guitar like any other effects pedal or tuner.
Designed to give accurate triggering, with low-latency, it is a true plug-and-play solution for monophonic MIDI guitar. It can be used to sequence bass lines and guitar solos add an edge to your live performances — it opens up many creative possibilities.
Whether it’s a clean, shimmering guitar sound, raucous crunch, or full-tilt gain with outrageous overdrive, the new DA5 has it, and all points in between.
Great sounding effects.
The versatility extends to a full complement of 11 digital effects. The DA5 features auto-wah, chorus + delay, chorus + reverb, compressor, compressor + chorus, compressor + phaser, delay, flanger + reverb, reverb, rotary + reverb, and tremolo + reverb. There’s also a Tap Button that makes it easy to set the delay time or modulation speed.
Native Instruments Guitar Rig Mobile – compact USB 2.0 audio Interface (24-bit/192kHz), 1/4″ jack instrument input, 1/4″ TRS stereo line/headphone out, includes Guitar Rig 3 LE Software (2x guitar & 1x bass amp models, 12x speaker models and 12x FX.
Seamless design for live play or recording work The G1u gives you not only 67 versatile guitar effects, it also features full USB audio interface capability. Whether you’re just practicing, playing a gig, or having a recording session, the G1u will impress as a multi talented performer.
Record directly to computer.
67 Studio Quality Effects.
Battery or USB powered.
IK Multimedia Stealth Plug USB Audio Interface.
With an in-line guitar cable USB audio interface housing a 1/4� jack on one side and a USB port on the other, entering the world of software based amp and effects modeling is as simple as plugging your guitar into your computer. StealthPlug also includes volume adjustment buttons, indication LED, and a 1/8� stereo output for headphones, powered speakers, or an amp.
The perfect mobile solution for playing, recording, or practicing – anytime and anywhere.
Use AmpliTube Live, for playing and AmpliTube LE within your recording environment for the ultimate in flexibility. For live playing or practicing anywhere at any time, the StealthPlug is a complete guitar amp and effects modeling solution. Use the StealthPlug with AmpliTube Live and LE, in either plug-in or standalone format, with all major Mac and PC platforms.
Easy to use, just plug your guitar into your computer.
Lookking for the perfect additional present for a guitarist sometimes tales a little exploring, that said how do you know what to look for if you’re not a guitarist yourself.
Here are some ideas for presents/gifts as we lead up to christmas.
Everything from guitar effects to USB recording devices to mini amps to DSP fx and USB amplifiers.
These are gadgets that I’ve come across that you can get for under £50.
Gadgets Under £25
Behringer TO100, Tube Overdrive Boden/Fußpedal, tube-like distortion, smooth sustain and super fat tone.
Headphone guitar amplifier – Danelectro® E-studio Headphone amplifier – stop annoying the neighbours!
Electronic studio for your guitar that you carry in your pocket – Featuring a clean or ‘Vintage Overdrive’ tone option
Clips on to your belt or guitar strap and comes complete with headphones.
Suitable for all electric guitars – Requires a 9V battery.
Fab Distortion Pedal by Danelectro – In the late 1970s, a tiny effects maker in Japan produced a small quantity of what many believe is THE definitive distortion box. Delicious tonality, highly responsive, highly versatile. Recently a boutique maker has re-issued that box at over 200. Danelectro offers you sonic equivalence to the prized originals at an unbelievable price.
Strap a screamin’ stack to your belt! You can take it with you with the Marshall MS-2 Mini Amp. Classic Marshall grille cloth; crunchy distortion; and plenty of volume for good, clean fun.
Controls for overdrive, tone, and volume. Powered by one 9V battery. The Marshall MS-2 Mini Amp includes belt clip and headphone jack. 5-3/4″ high.
Guitar Gadgets Under £50
Danelectro Hodad Mini Amp Mini-practice Amp with two speakers, Cool Echo“- Effect, Vintage Tremolo-Effect with, control for Tone, Gain and Volume, Headphone Output, operating with 9V Battery or optional Power supply.
This USB-based guitar amplifier gives you more effects and playback functions than a standard practice amp. When plugged into your PC or a laptop, the supplied software lets you jam along to MP3 tracks. You can even transpose (change the pitch) or slow down or speed up parts of the song. You can loop parts of the song so you can nail that tricky solo! The software has a built in tuner and metronome – all the tools for a beginner and experienced guitarist. Furthermore, the USB Guitar Amplifier has a multitude of guitar effects to make your guitar sound like heavy metal, blues, country and more.
GUITAR LINK UCG102 Interface from BEHRINGER. This compact interface links your electric guitar to a PC or Mac via a typical USB cable, allowing you to rock with sophisticated software that’s included. It also features a headphone output for silent practicing.
Plug your guitar into your PC and turn it into a full recording device.
Ideal for laptops get free guitar effects form the web and start recording. Perfect for GCSE students and amateur recordings.
Ultra-Flexible Modeling Amp/Multi-Effects Processor with Integrated Expression Pedal.
The X V-AMP is a floor-based unit not only featuring the best V-AMP models of celebrated guitar amplifiers and speakers, but also providing the most desirable stomp box simulations combined with a multi-mode expression pedal.
16 amp models with or without cabinet simulation, compressor, noise gate, EQ, modulation effects , delay and reverb are at your disposal-use up to 11 effects simultaneously for a total of unbelievable 61 effects! The 24-bit high-resolution stereo multi-effects processor includes not only one but four models of first-class stomp box simulations of each of the following: chorus, flanger, phaser, tremolo, rotary speaker, pitch bend effects and many more, giving you a total of 32 stunning modulation effects.
A special acoustic simulation and an amp bypass function are also included. The expression pedal is freely assignable for real-time control of effects or wah/volume control. Naturally, a power supply is included. All in all, the X-VAMP offers a combination of features that is simply tough to beat!
96 kHz sampling recreates true tube amp sound
The heart of any multi-effect device is its processor and decoder section. The G1 features the Zoom’s ZFX-3 chip. The 32-bit architecture ensures outstanding performance and allows smooth and detailed signal processing. This is a new generation DSP that brings out the character of your instrument without restrictions, helping you pursue the ultimate in guitar sound.
21 amp/stomp box modeling choices
By digitally simulating the clipping action of analog devices such as tubes and diodes, the G1 faithfully duplicates the distortion of tube amps and vintage effects.
The choices range from models that made guitar history such as Fender, Marshall and Vox to popular modern amps including Mesa/Boogie, Peavey, and Diezel. An acoustic simulator is also included, so your electric instrument can sound like an acoustic guitar when the fancy strikes.
54 high-quality effects to fire your imagination
Duplicate the historic sounds of the MXR Dynacomp, Vox Wah, or Crybaby Wah.
40 presets give you the sound of the pros
Right out of the box, you can enjoy professional-quality guitar sound. And when creativity strikes, a separate area capable of storing another 40 user patches is also provided.
Simple and friendly user interface
Drum machine with PCM sound sources, The 40 rhythm variations include the steady 8-beat of Rock and Pop, funky 16-beat, a “Jazzy” 4-beat, some great shuffle for Blues sessions, and many more choices.
Auto-chromatic tuner for guitar.
‘Is your mix Boomy, Flat, Muddy, Unbalanced and just not right?
The problem is your room.
Fix your Room and you’ll fix your mix…‘
Sometimes something comes along that you just wish you had enough spare cash to throw away on.
I’d love to know if this works.
The ERGO is a digital room analysis/correction system designed to measure and analyse phase abd frequency problems within a listening environment.
There’s an article on Sound On Sound here
A great mix starts with a great recording room. But when it comes to achieving the most accurate mix, your room may have the upper hand. Like any room, your studio’s acoustics include offending frequencies and room reflections, and none of these are helping your mix. Getting a handle on these problems has traditionally meant the installation of soft foam or fabrics, and that’s a great start. But now you can get even closer to a perfect room, and a perfect mix, because the future of studio sound is here, and it’s called ERGO.