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How We Test: Information on our testing methodologies.

 
Recent Reviews

Guitar

Hughes & Kettner Triamp Mark 3
When you're unwilling to compromise tone and functionality, you can't go wrong with the fantastic Hughes & Kettner Triamp Mark 3. Truly one of the greatest high-gain amps ever built.

Fender Johnny Marr Jaguar
Who would have thought that the legendary alternative rock guitarist from The Smiths would create a signature guitar that significantly improves upon the original?

D'Angelico EX-SS Archtop Guitar
The classic jazz guitar company from New York City is back, and the EX-SS is a beautiful hollow-body guitar that can hang at your jazz gig... or your rock gig.

Bass

Tech 21 VT Bass 500 Amp
Tech 21's first compact amp built around a class-D amplifier sounds fantastic and carries a ridiculously low price tag. What's not to love?

Tech 21 SansAmp Bass Driver DI
Tech 21 takes their industry standard DI and improves it for use with five- and six-string basses.

NS Design WAV4 RADIUS Bass
If you need a modern, versatile bass with tons of style, tone, and feel, which also presents a solid value, you must check out this fantastic instrument!

Keyboards

Umlaut Audio PADS and ARPS
Tired of the same old synth pads? PADS delivers soundtrack vibe in a box, with a super-easy interface. ARPS delivers a new spin on percussion sequencing.

AAS Strum 2
Want to sound like a guitar player... from your keyboard? Strum goes way beyond simple guitar samples, delivering actual guitar playing feel. Check it out!

Moog Mother-32
This semi-modular analog synth from Moog sounds great, is fun to use, and is priced for anyone. Who says your mother isn't hot stuff?

Akai Pro Advance 61
We are extremey picky about our choice of MIDI keyboard controllers, so it was an absolute treat getting to know this pro-grade controller and its accompanying VIP software.

Drums

Tama Starclassic BB Hyper-Drive
Solid performing pro drums with Tama's latest innovations, at a price that is just right for the working musician.

Zildjian Travis Barker Double Mallet
Blink and you just might miss these hard rocking stalks of hickory that double as both mallets and sticks.

Recording

USB & ThunderBolt Audio Interfaces
Looking to update your studio with a new interface and preamps? We went head-to-head with three of the latest and greatest: PreSonus Studio 192, MOTU 1248, and the Antelope Orion Studio.

Warm Audio WA-2A Optical Tube Compressor
Warm Audio created a replica of the legendary LA-2A compressor. Is it just as good? Almost as good? Even better than the original?

PreSonus DigiMax DP88 8-Channel
A/D/A Converter with Remote Preamps

Great sounding and easy way to add a bank of eight digitallly controlled preamps to your studio and/or audio interface.

Zaor Yesk Music Production Desk
We all need a place to set up our music production workstations, and the Yesk Desk offers a stylish and functional piece of furtniture for your project studio.

Celemony Melodyne 4
One of the leading pitch correction and time correction audio tools gets even better!

NUGEN Audio ISL 2 Limiter
This true-peak limiter could be our new benchmark.

Mobile

IK Multimedia iRig Pro Duo
New, premium mobile audio interface serves double duty on your laptop, too!

Listening To and Reading

Latest CDs, DVDs, and Books
New CDs and DVDs from Fire Garden, Kansas, Kee Marcello, Marillion, The Mission, The Neal Morse Band, My World, Operation: Mindcrime, Ted Poley, Paul Simon, Toto, Devin Townsend Project, John Wesley, Withem.

Check this space every week for additions!

The Not So Distant Past...


Guitar

Fuchs Mantis Jr. Amp
Andy Fuchs delivers a new high-gain, boutique amp with low wattage and a friendly price tag.

DOD Looking Glass Overdrive
It's shiny, designed by a boutique pedal guru, and is full of useful boost and overdrive sounds. Rock on!

Knaggs SSC Guitar

Boutique builder Knaggs Guitars has unleased another monster in their Steve Stevens signature model.

RJM Music Mini Amp Gizmo
There is no simpler way to control your amplifier from any MIDI foot controller than with this handy device for your pedalboard or rack.

BOSS ES-8 Effects Switching System
The BOSS ES-8 audio loop and function switcher takes on the big boys of custom pedalboards and rig design. How does the classic pedal maker compare with their most ambitious product to date?

Friedman Steve Stevens SS100 Amplifier
When guitar guru Steve Stevens set out to improve upon his Marshall Plexi tone, amp builder Dave Friedman was just the right builder for the task.

Bass

Phil Jones Bass Double Four 
Personal Micro Bass Amp BG75

When you need the smallest possible amp with pro-quality tone, Phil Jones has you covered with their latest micro-sized amp.

Eden Glowplug
Ever wish your solid-state bass amp had just a little bit of tube warmth? Your prayers may have finally been answered!

Keyboards

UVI Falcon
Massive. Deep. Innovative. Falcon is the kind of soft-synth you can lose yourself in. But it's far more than just another synth.

Yamaha Montage 6
Yamaha's flagship synthesizer delivers the latest evolution of FM Synthesis, incredible real-time control, and more.

Dave Smith Instruments OB-6
Dave Smith strikes again, this time with Tom Oberheim at his side. The results: classic Oberheim meets modern DSI. What's not to love?

AAS Chromaphone 2
You may think this is just a percussive object virtual instrument, but wait until you hear all the other stuff it can do!

Drums

Tama BB156 Bell Brass Snare Drum
This monster of a snare drum sounds just as special as it looks. Does it belong in your drum kit?

Recording

Eventide Anthology X
One plug-in suite to rule them all? If you want classic Eventide processing in your studio, this bundle is extremely hard to resist.

Fluid Audio FPX7 Monitor Speakers
New monitor speakers aim to crack the sub-$700 category with an innovative combination of coaxial speaker design and a ribbon tweeter.

PreSonus R80 AMT Monitor Speakers
The lastest monitors from PreSonus feature AMT tweeter technology and deliver class-above performance for a killer price.

Shure KSM8 Dualdyne Microphone
The first revolutionary design change to a handheld microphone in nearly 100 years yields awesome results on stage and in the studio!

Live Sound

Shure KSM8 Dualdyne Microphone
The first revolutionary design change to a handheld microphone in nearly 100 years yields awesome results on stage and in the studio!

Shure Beta 87a & 87c Microphones
Two microphones, nearly identical, but with very different results. Which one will benefit your vocalist?

Mobile

Korg iM1 Synth for iOS
If your studio lacks a classic Korg M1, no problem! Korg just released a spot-on recreation for the iPad!

Arturia iSEM Synthesizer
Aturia does a great job recreating vintage synths, and this latest synth for iOS delivers the classic Oberheim SEM.

Listening To and Reading

Latest CD and DVD Reviews
Great new musical releases from Dream Theater, Steven Wilson, Jane Getter, The Mute Gods, Simple Minds, Jordan Rudess, Dream Eternal Bliss, Coldplay, Rush, Pagan's Mind, Casualties of Cool, Jane Getter Premonition, and books from Mark Vail and Howard Massey


 

 

   
               
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