Buffalo FX's new Ram's Head will satisfy the tastes of players who lust after Gilmour's tone on Animals and The Wall.

If you line up a several original “ram’s head” Big Muffs, each will speak with a slightly different accent. Electro-Harmonix allegedly used some 20 different schematics for this second version of the Muff, which the company introduced in 1973. One constant among originals, however, is their midrange scoop, which can make the Muff a shadowy presence in a live situation.

Precision Muffin Makin’ Steve Painter of Buffalo FX says that addressing this midrange drop was the first priority of his ram’s head clone, and indeed, his NOS BC239C transistor-driven unit has a perceptible midrange bump and increased top-end headroom. The components are period-accurate—everything inside this black box existed in the ’70s.

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Jaguar's new HC50 dodges delivers a minimalist, potent, distinctly English-voiced EL34 amp that’s happy dishing immaculate clean tones and more ferocious sounds alike.

Part of the charm of vintage amplifiers is their inherent simplicity—I mean, do you really need six or seven knobs to get a decent tone? While there is something to be said for versatility and control, the short answer to that question for a lot of players is that less is more.

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A J-style that offers a lot of the features Sandberg is famous for but at a more wallet-friendly price.

Let’s face it: The versatility and playability of the Jazz bass that Leo Fender gave us in 1960 have cemented its place in music history and made it the weapon of choice for a wide spectrum of bassists the world over. Since then there have been many would-be contenders to the original formula, though a good number of these basses have fallen into the pretender category. But over the years several companies have come up with J-styles that stand out, usually because of some sort of ingenious electronic or physical improvement.

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