Missed everything that's gone on in the gear world this week? Never fear - we've got you covered. Here's five of the best gear releases that might have flown under your radar this week, including some brand spankin' new drive pedals from MESA/Boogie, a snack-sized tube amp from Joyo and an app that is bound to make a lot of Android users happy. Dig in!
1. MESA/Boogie Overdrive Pedals
Fresh off the back of launching the Subway TT-800 bass amp last week, MESA/Boogie have doubled down on the gear front with three new overdrive pedals. Made in the US, the new Cleo, Dynaplex and Gold Mine pedals each pack their own unique tone and purpose, offering players with a choice selection of pedals for any application.
The Cleo functions as a transparent boost/overdrive with a focus on vintage-sounding low-to-medium gain sounds with plenty of nuance and dynamic, while the Dynaplex delivers that classic British crunch, abundant in rich midrange frequencies. Finally the Gold Mine will smack you on the nose with oodles of gain with all the harmonic complexity you’d expect from a MESA amp. Keep your eyes peeled for them soon.
2. Joyo Jackman II BanTamP XL
The name might be a bit of a mouthful, but open up this little lunchbox amp, and you’ll find a whole heap of tasty treats on the inside. The 20 watt Jackman II is the latest addition to Joyo’s BanTamP amplifier range, utilising a single 12AX7 preamp tube to dish out some classic British tones.
This new model features volume, gain and tone controls for both clean and overdrive channels, and lets you use an external footswitch to flick between each voicing on the fly. If its size and specs didn’t already win you over, the Joyo Jackman II also features Bluetooth connectivity, an effects loop and a headphone output, making it a tidy setup for bedroom practice or smaller rehearsals.
3. Steinberg’s new Cubasis 3.1 for Android
Mobile music makers rejoice: Steinberg have updated their nifty smartphone production suite Cubasis with a range of features, and for the first time ever, it’s now available on Android OS. Android users can now enjoy 48 kHz audio resolution and utilise one stereo input and output when creating music on the app - which, to be fair, is still nowhere near as good as the 96kHz resolution and 24 I/O enjoyed by iOS users, but hey: it’s a start.
The app also offers Android users unlimited MIDI and audio tracks, as well as effects plug-ins and virtual instruments (although there’s nowhere near as many on offer as there are for Apple users). If you really need an app to get out any sudden surges of creativity when you’re riding the bus or away from your DAW of choice, however, it’ll still do the trick.
4. Orangewood expands the Highland Collection
Orangewood have bolstered their popular Highland Collection of acoustic guitars with two new all-mahogany models, catering for a crowd that may favour a woody, rich acoustic tone. These new guitars, which are available in Grand Concert and Grand Auditorium Cutaway varieties, feature solid mahogany tops, backs and sides, as well as an ebony fretboard, TUSQ nut and saddle and an optional LR Baggs Anthem pickup.
Each Orangewood guitar comes professionally set up by the brand’s expert technicians in California, as well as a hard case for travel and storage. If you’re interested in exploring the acoustic offerings of a lesser-known brand without compromising on quality, these models could be up your alley.
5. A New 100 Watt PRS Mark Tremonti Amp???
Mark Tremonti has been one of the most loyal endorsees of the PRS name for years now, and as such, he’s been decorated with a bunch of sweet signature guitars and amps. Now, it looks like the brand are gearing up to release another signature amplifier for the Alter Bridge guitarist, taking his 15 watt PRS MT 15 head and supercharging it up to a mighty 100 watts for use onstage.
Details on this one are scant at this stage - Tremonti only mentioned it briefly in an interview with Ultimate Guitar a day ago, but he gave away enough information to get the hype mill churning. The 100 watt monster is set to feature a ‘Dumble-esque’ boost on the amp with plenty of headroom, with Tremonti expressing his desire for something totally unique to the market. Read the interview over at Ultimate Guitar, and stay tuned for when it officially arrives at a later date.
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