Gear Finds: Acoustic Edition 2022
Check here for some of the latest and greatest acoustics in 2022!
The PRS SE T40E pairs ovangkol back and sides with a solid spruce top for full, lush tone. When matched with PRS hybrid“X”/Classical bracing, which allows the top to freely vibrate, the SE T40E’s voice projects with breathtaking volume and delicate nuance. The Tonare Grand body shape delivers a familiar feel and a thunderous tone, well suited for picking and fingerstyle playing.
Plugged in, the PRS-Voiced Fishman Sonitone pickup system delivers dynamic, organic tone and allows players to easily take this guitar from rehearsal to the stage. This electronics system features an undersaddle pickup and soundhole mounted preamp with easy- to-access volume and tone controls.
Additional high-quality features include a solid spruce top, ebony fretboard and bridge, bone nut and saddle, as well as PRS trademark bird inlays and headstock design. Ships with a high-quality hardshell case.
The Advanced Acoustic series represents an important step forward in the long and storied tradition of the acoustic guitar. In what amounts to a fully reimagined acoustic experience, these instruments were designed from the ground up to deliver a richer, brighter, and louder tone, with an unprecedentedly wide dynamic range. With slightly larger than typical proportions, Ibanez decided to name this new body shape the “Grand Dreadnought.” This reinvented design achieves a superb, powerful sound, and thanks to the extensive consideration given to the ergonomics, it’s extremely comfortable to play. The Advanced Acoustic series pushes the acoustic guitar to new heights in a way that promises an exciting experience for all players.
Left-Handed Guitarists: mid-priced acoustic-electric with an Ergonomic Armrest seeking partner to make beautiful music.
“Wow, the armrest really helps keep from cutting off blood circulation when I’m practicing and feels like I’m playing a smaller instrument. Responds nicely both to some intimate playing, and has nice character when you hit it a little hard; it responds with a good full low end and is still crisp and clear.” ~ Sean Harkness, NYC
The NATURA G550RCEL is a Left-handed acoustic-electric featuring an Ergonomic Armrest for comfort. The G550RCEL is a solid Spruce top Grand Auditorium Cutaway with weight reducing Low-Mass bracing. It has a voice that is focused and harmonically complex and suitable for left-handed players looking for the volume of a full-sized instrument and the comfort of a smaller body. A Glass-fibre reinforced neck ensures a lifetime of neck stability.
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We love metal at Gator – both the head-banging and physical types. While our metal stands are great for the stage and studio, they don’t always blend into their environment. Sometimes you need something more elegant and adaptable to the overall vibe of
your living room or studio furniture, which is exactly what the Elite Guitar Hanging Stands by Gator Frameworks provide – simplicity with an aesthetic to match any home or studio décor. These stands satisfy all types of players by providing a comfortable fit for most electric, bass and acoustic guitars. Show off your collection with style!
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The Grace Design BiX preamp shares the exact same DNA of its bigger siblings, FELiX2 and ALiX, but with an intelligently streamlined feature set and a price that puts it in reach of any performer, whether on your way to the coffee shop or the Megadome. BiX delivers maximum clarity and detail for any plugged in instrument, with dead simple controls – input gain, high and low shelving EQ, and a 10dB variable boost circuit, with footswitches for mute and boost. I/O includes instrument input, separate send and return insert jacks, an unbalanced line output, and a balanced ISO DI output on XLR. And BiX is pedalboard friendly, with a 9VDC power input and a compact, rugged low-profile chassis. Visit www.gracedesign.com for complete details.
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Our battle-weary hosts have returned from the scorched trenches and badge-strewn wastelands in Anaheim, California, and they’re ready to recount what they saw. Welcome to the NAMM 2024 airing of the grievances.
Zach and Rhett are coming at this from two different angles: Zach as a vendor with Mythos Pedals, and Rhett as an attendee and noted YouTuber-about-town. This year marked Zach’s first on the vendor side, an experience he calls “trial by fire on the show floor.” It ain’t cheap to showcase at NAMM, and Zach has some ideas for how to give participants more bang for their buck. The worst feeling in the world, after all, is dropping a mountain of cash to travel to the show, only to stand alone at your booth for four days. (By the way, three days might be a better fit.)
Rhett and Zach share their horror stories—from pushy salesmen in suits to awkward physical confrontations—and forecast some possible solutions before they turn to the auction of a Mark Knopfler guitar for an insane sum. Why are vintage guitar prices shooting up, and how are scalpers screwing up the gear market? Tune in for the juice.
Our columnist shares his thoughts on the potential benefits of music stores organizing small-scale alternative trade shows.
“Are you guys going to NAMM this year?” This is a question I’ll receive from industry friends as soon as the next NAMM show is remotely out of view. For the uninitiated, NAMM is the National Association of Music Merchants—the largest U.S.-based trade show for any company or person involved in the music industry. It’s a trade show attended by a full range of “anybody who is anybody.” At least, it used to be….
Vendor attendance at the big show has changed over the last few years. There are several factors for discussion here—cost, logistics, booth preparation, return on investment (ROI). ROI is the main concern that I come across when chatting with friends in the industry. Networking is one of the biggest factors that NAMM had going for it. Now, in the age of the internet, that NAMM-only value has diminished. Top that off with a Covid shutdown and major companies finding out that they can prosper without the NAMM show, and you get the current state of the show.
I’d like to make it clear that this is in no way meant to disparage NAMM, its employees, or its attendees. My company has presented at both the summer and winter shows over a five-year lifespan. Those outings were overall positive experiences that created lovely memories and relationships. However, I’m highly skeptical that the cost was worth those experiences and relationships. Herein lies the main discussion. Not, “Do we really need NAMM anymore?” but, “What else can companies do besides NAMM?” This topic instantly gives me David vs. Goliath imagery.
“Nothing that I’ve mentioned here is new, revolutionary thinking by any stretch. It’s simply a call to attention.”
Much like how we appreciate and seek out small music stores because of the unique inventory offered and customer services rendered, I believe these stores can offer those very things in the form of mini trade shows—small stores hosting live, in-store events consisting of small builders, specially curated for local musicians and enthusiasts. I’ve had the pleasure of attending these expos around New England, to the degree that I’ve been inspired to encourage and help music stores host events just like this.
These small shows aren’t uncommon or unheard of. Even Reverb sponsored a small-builders expo at Chicago Music Exchange last August, so these events are definitely on the radar. Likewise, the Brooklyn Stompbox Exhibit is a recurring show that has become quite popular with guitar and synth players over the years.
So, what can we do to assist in this NAMM-alternative era? I’d break it down into three sections: create, organize, and attend. I’m actively working towards creating and organizing small expos that would be hosted by music retailers. The core model is pretty straightforward:
Step 1: A music store invites brands that they already carry (and possibly some that they don’t).
Step 2: Those brands attend the show with demo stations to display their product line.
Step 3: The store and attending brands promote the event through any and all channels available.
Step 4: People attend the show and try out gear while getting to chat and engage with the builders.
Some expos like to incentivise their events with giveaways and the like. These stores also have a propensity to tailor the show to their specific/local community or customer demographic. All of these things help give the shows their own character and vibe.
Nothing that I’ve mentioned here is revolutionary thinking by any stretch. It’s simply a call to attention. So, let these closing remarks be my plea to music store owners, their employees, boutique builders, and members of the community: I encourage you to start the conversation about hosting your very own in-store gear expo and inviting brands to attend, even if it’s focused solely around the brands that are local and semi-local to your store. I would love to see “mini NAMM” shows all around the country throughout the year. As we’ve witnessed with NAMM, these events have great potential, but they have to start somewhere. The very first Academy Awards ceremony had an attendance of 270 people and was hosted on a Thursday.
Calling all pedal lovers! You could win one of SIXTEEN (and counting!) pedals in this year's I Love Pedals giveaway. Come back daily for more entries, giving you dozens of chances to win! Giveaway ends March 1, 2024.