What Stuck From NAMM?
As the excitement of all the new releases settles and many of the recently announced products hit the marketplace, it is easy to forget about so much of the gear that gets unveiled during NAMM. Here’s some of the gear that we’re still excited about!
Chase Bliss Preamp MKII
The new Preamp MKII pedal from Chase Bliss Audio looks like tons of fun. This is said to be the first pedal to be included in Chase Bliss Audio’s new “Automatone” pedal series. The MKII has six sliders for volume, treble, mids, frequency, bass, and gain. With automated sliders, when a preset is changed, all of the sliders move to the new preset. This allows the user to see exactly what was saved under a particular preset. There are also five 3-way LED knobs which include scroll (shows you which bank of presets you are in), mids, Q (allows user to set high, medium or low values), diode (select between germanium or silicon fuzz types), and fuzz (choose between gated or open). As you can see, there are many different sounds you can get out of this awesome looking pedal.
Everybody knows the classic Roland Juno synth sound, It raised some of us. TC electronic finally brought the classic synth chorus sound to the guitar realm. This 100% analog pedal paired with a head-turning housing would be a necessary staple to any rig. This chorus pedal has both a stereo and mono signal path option, just throw a trs plug into the output jack and you have a small footprint stereo pedal. The Juno-60 has been teased by TC Electronic since 2017 but is confirmed to ship out this spring for an extremely affordable price point of $49.99.
Suhr PT 15
“The PT15 I.R. is the world’s first truly hybrid amplifier, marrying classic tube circuitry with a reactive load and digital impulse response technology.”
Suhr has tied in an all tube, 3 channel, 6v6 driven circuit with their Reactive Load technology creating an unbelievably convenient head while maintaining the incredible tone brought to the table by all Suhr products. By incorporating their Reactive Load technology into the amp, the head gives you the option to go cabinet-less in both the studio and in live situations. While this is not new technology, it feels like this is one of the first times that this is being done right. Instead of a single cab simulation that seems to be present in most models similar to this, the PT15 comes loaded with 16 impulse responses of Suhr cabinets, all of which can be assigned to individual channels. If that isn’t enough tonal options, the PT15 is an open system, meaning the player can load their own third party IRs onto the head. In addition to all of the IR technology packed into the head, it contains three all-tube channels offering a plethora of both American and British tones. If this amp really does uphold the tonal quality of the previous Pete Thorn signature heads while integrating their Reactive Load technology, I feel like this really is going to be a game changer.
L.R. Baggs Align
One thing that I think still stood out to me from NAMM was L.R. Baggs new Align Series of Pedals. I think that oftentimes acoustic guitar players don’t realize that acoustic tone can be shaped and molded too. So often acoustic guitarists will spend a lot of money on a really nice guitar then simply plug it into the system with no real thought to their tone. Acoustic guitarists should use nice equipment from pedals like these to high quality guitar cables to make sure they not only get the best tone from their guitar but that they have full control of their tone. This new Align Series from L.R. Baggs is a great middle-ground between well-made pedals and simple to use pedals that will help break acoustic guitar players in the world of controlling their guitar tone.