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Tools for the Task: Noise Gate Pedals

Keep the sounds you want. Dial out the ones you don’t.

Hiss, hum, or buzz getting you down? Rather than kicking in a speaker, add a noise-gate pedal to your rig and clean that unwanted sonic junk from your signal chain. Here are 10 boxes to consider.

BOSS

NS-2
This pedal’s circuit preserves the natural attack and envelope of an instrument’s sound, while its threshold and decay controls allow for shaping the elimination/suppression as desired.
$99 street
boss.info  

ISP TECHNOLOGIES

Decimator II This noise gate features the company’s Linearized Time Vector Processing, designed to provide smooth sustained-note decay that’s virtually free of any release ripple.
$134 street
isptechnologies.com  

DONNER

Noise Killer
Featuring both hard and soft modes of noise reduction, this mini-format pedal has a noise-reduction degree range of -70 dB to +10 dB.
$37 street
donnerdeal.com  

ELECTRO-HARMONIX

Silencer
Housing three controls for precise fine-tuning, this pedal delivers up to -70 dB of noise reduction and a release time of 8 ms to 4 seconds.
$69 street
ehx.com  

MXR

Noise Clamp
Promising to come down hard on the noisiest of signals, this pedal’s lone trigger dial allows players to set the volume threshold at which the pedal is active.
$89 street
jimdunlop.com

TC ELECTRONIC

Sentry
The multi-band technology in this TonePrint-enabled pedal focuses on very specific frequencies to reduce noise without compromising core tone.
$129 street
tcelectronic.com  

ROCKTRON

MicroHUSH
This true-bypass mini noise-gate pedal is designed to wipe out hiss, unwanted feedback, and pickup buzz by providing up to 65 dB of signal clean-up, while maintaining signal integrity.
$119 street
rocktron.com  

PIGTRONIX

Gate Keeper
This micro-format pedal uses high-speed JFET circuitry to eliminate non-musical sounds, allowing players to crank the volume without worry, even on most high-gain rigs.
$99 street
pigtronix.com  

RANDALL

Bloq
This stealthy noise-gate pedal houses a single control for threshold and switchable input sensitivity for loop or front-end application.
$129 street
randallamplifiers.com  

CARL MARTIN

Noise Terminator
Unlike conventional noise gates, this pedal allows a player to switch between two threshold settings: soft for less noisy equipment and hard for when more radical settings are needed.
$166 street
carlmartin.com
Full Slash Interview
Full Slash Interview on New Blues Album, S.E.R.P.E.N.T. Festival, Guitar Gear, Pedal Steel & More

The guitar icon shares what went into making his chart-topping blues album and what gear fans can expect to see at the S.E.R.P.E.N.T. Blues Festival tour.

This 1968 Epiphone Al Caiola Standard came stocked with P-90s and a 5-switch Tone Expressor system.

Photo courtesy of Guitar Point (guitarpoint.de)

Photo courtesy of Guitar Point (guitarpoint.de)

The session ace’s signature model offers a wide range of tones at the flip of a switch … or five.

Hello and welcome back to Mod Garage. Not long ago, I came home late from a band rehearsal, still overly excited about the new songs we played. I got myself a coffee (I know, it's a crazy procedure to calm down) and turned on the TV. I ended up with an old Bonanza episode from the ’60s, the mother of all Western TV series. Hearing the theme after a long time instantly reminded me of the great Al Caiola, who is the prolific session guitarist who plays on the song. With him in mind, I looked up the ’60s Epiphone “Al Caiola” model and decided I want to talk about the Epiphone/Gibson Tone Expressor system that was used in this guitar.

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Slinky playability, snappy sounds, and elegant, comfortable proportions distinguish an affordable 0-bodied flattop.

Satisfying, slinky playability. Nice string-to-string balance. Beautiful, comfortable proportions.

Cocobolo-patterned HPL back looks plasticky.

$699

Martin 0-X2E
martinguitar.com

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The GibsonES Supreme Collection (L-R) in Seafoam Green, Bourbon Burst, and Blueberry Burst.

The new Gibson ES Supreme offers AAA-grade figured maple tops, Super Split Block inlays, push/pull volume controls, and Burstbucker pickups.

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