Sunday, 23 August 2015

AEA Nuvo N22 & N8 Ribbon Microphones - Acoustic Guitar

I've been horrendously slow in properly doing my part to show the world these mics. Back in January this year, I had the great pleasure of spending a day at AEA's headquarters in Pasadena, California after stocking their great microphones for a couple of years at Sound Devices. I fell in love with the R92 first, buying my own shortly after. It's been my favourite electric guitar cab mic ever since.

From there on, I've tried to experiment with their other microphones on sources I less commonly record. Their new Nuvo series, active ribbon microphones with a nice price tag and a slimmer, more modern form factor, are marketed as great all purpose modern ribbon microphones with condenser-like gain requirements and a full frequency response.

The key difference between them is that the N22 has a reduced proximity effect, making it useful for close mic recording of vocals, acoustic instruments - pretty much anything. Sometimes proximity effect is actually wanted though, and along comes the N8 - a much warmer, low frequency heavy mic that performs extremely well as a room microphone where it's not right up close to the source.

Here's how both models sound on a lovely new custom made Taylor Grand Auditorium shape acoustic guitar, with a classic AKG C414 large diaphragm condenser mic set to bi-directional polar pattern for comparisons sake. This should give you a good idea of how differently the ribbon microphones respond.

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Wampler "Amp In A Box" Pedals - Triple Wreck & SLOstortion

I just managed to get this brand into the store after never really having any experience with them, and being the high gain American tube amp junkie that I am - these two were the main ones driving that decision.

Didn't have a lot of time so these demos are pretty simple, no talking or anything. Also strangely ended up recording them plugged into a clean profile through my Kemper instead of in front of an amp. I initially tried them in front on my 6505 clean channel, but it really didn't sound that "pronounced", I wasn't getting the character of the pedals. Once I tried it in front of the Kemper, the effect was so much clearer and I could really hear the character of the amps they were trying to emulate.

Thursday, 30 July 2015


Sorry folks! It's been a little while since I shared what I've been up to here.

I've been keeping very busy at the shop and finishing off my bachelor of music degree so I haven't had as much time for videos and the like. I've chucked in all my recent videos below.

The one piece of very exciting news I have is that I've officially gone nuts and ordered a PRS Private Stock guitar with one of the other guys at the shop. I'm getting a McCarty in Tiger Eye finish with quilt top and flame maple neck upgrades - he's going for a McCarty Singlecut in McCarty Glow Burst, also with quilt top upgrade. They're going to be wild, and I, will never have any savings ever... such is the curse of the gear nerd.... Look out for lots of worshipping at the alter of PRS in about 6 months time!

                                     Earthquaker Devices Dunes Overdrive Pedal

Digitech Obscura Delay Pedal

Deftones - My Own Summer (Guitar Cover)

Deftones - Diamond Eyes (Guitar Cover)

Deftones - Rocket Skates (Guitar Cover)

Earthquaker Devices Organiser Pedal 

Rode - New VideoMic Pro

Kemper Delay, Mod and Reverb Effects Demo

TC Electronic Helix Phaser Demo

Digitech Mosaic 12-String Effect Pedal Demo

Kemper - How The Profiling Process Works Demo

Clinch FX EP-Pre Echoplex Preamp Pedal Demo

Monday, 6 July 2015

First Live Music Videos with the Sony A7s!

Finally got the chance to give my new Sony A7s with Zeiss 16-35mm lens a go at shooting a dark show, one of the primary purposes I bought it for. Small shows like this have always been difficult because of the necessary ISO setting and the noise it brings. All of the Dangers footage was shot at 10,000 ISO and the Bare Bones footage at 8,000 ISO... I can't believe how little noise I got, it's amazing.

The other surprising positive of this test was that I actually forgot my Rode camera mic, and had to use the internal audio. I was bummed about this throughout the show, thinking it would sound horrible and wouldn't be worth using. I turned the gain right down to 1, which seemed to just spare me from any clipping, and I actually ended up with a surprisingly pleasant result! I used a very light amount of EQ and limiting in Ozone 6 during post but that's it.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Darkglass Microtubes B3K and B7K Bass Pedals

I've been reading lots of great things about these pedals over the past year or so, especially from the likes of now highly prolific players such as Nolly (Periphery). I even got the chance to briefly meet the guys from Darkglass at the Winter NAMM show this year, so I took the opportunity to see if we could order some of their pedals for our shop. Fast forward 6 months or so and here we are, they're here!

I'll demo all of their pedals, but here's the first couple of videos focussing on the most popular models, the Microtubes B3K & B7K. Personally, as a songwriter and guitarist, I only really play bass when I'm trying to write parts for a song - usually on a cheap but effective Spector Performer series 5-string I have at home. So, for me - the B7K is the most appealing because it can function well in two ways, on a board in front of an amp AND as a direct recording tool for studio use.

There's nothing wrong with recording a bass direct via a DI box, usually you get a good acceptable result and not much can wrong there. The B7K gives you an affordable compact way to stick with the convenience of recording direct, but gives you the basic controls most players would rather have than not. The EQ is very useful, offering low, mid, high-mid and high controls. The overdrive is what Darkglass are really known for, an excellent range of saturation and no big negative impact on your clarity.

Australians, check out the range and please support me in being able to explore new brands, and make videos as much as possible by purchasing from Guitar Factory -

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Teletronix Mulholland Drive Mk3 Demo

I've been anxious to get my hands on this one just to experience it. This Australian-made overdrive has proven quite popular for years now as a boutique drive pedal. The controls are laid out like a Klon, not sure if that's the intention or a coincidence. It's got a great british style distortion, with a very useful treble control for adding a real searing "cut" to your tone, highlighting the harmonics.

TC Electronic Viscous Vibe Pedal Demo

This is a killer new pedal from TC, part of their Toneprint range of small format pedals. The Viscous Vibe is mostly a vibrato pedal, but it has a switch to make it more like a chorus too.

I thought this was honestly great, I'm a bit of a pedal snob when it comes to the big mass manufacturers like Boss, Digitech and TC and some of the other Toneprint series don't set my world on fire, but I can honestly say this was really easy to get a great sound out of and I would totally add it to my board for the asking price.