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RIP Jim Dunlop - King of the Picks

CryBabyDunlop EffectsDunlop ManufacturingDunlop PicksGuitar AccessoriesGuitar HeroesJimi HendrixMXRPicks and PlectrumsPitchUtilityWay Huge Effects+-
2019GPXJimDunlop700-min.jpg

Dunlop Manufacturing is one of the many, as well as one of the chief family businesses in the general guitar industry / sector - setting the pace and scope of what’s possibly with quality gear alongside outfits like Ernie Ball for over half a century (since 1965). And while Jim’s involvement of late has not been so prominent as in previous years, he has nonetheless left an indelible mark on the brands that he developed, innovated and evolved.

 

Dunlop probably means a great ...

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Pedal Chain 2019 Future Plans, Acquisitions and Alternative Arrangements

12 Degrees of SaturationAleks K ProductionAutomatoneBearfoot FXBeetronics FXBenson AmpsBig Muff Style FuzzBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBossBrown Sound DistortionBufferChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCompressorDecibelicsDelayDelay WorkstationDemon PedalsDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDr ScientistDriveDrolo EffectsDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveEmpress EffectsEnvelope Filter and Auto WahEQEventideFeaturedFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGermanium FuzzGlitchGranular DelayGuitar Synth and SequencerHarmonizerJackson AudioKlone and Transparent OverdriveLooperMarshall Style DistortionMeris EffectsMetal DistortionMI EffectsModulated FuzzModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveMu-TronOCD Style OverdriveOctaverOddball DelayOddball FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdrivePedalboard and Pedal-ChainPhaserPitchPitch-ShiftingPladask ElektriskRack Style ReverbRat Style FuzzRed Witch EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationREVV AmplificationShimmer ReverbSilicon FuzzSource AudioSpaceman EffectsSpacey ReverbStrymonTape DelayTC ElectronicThorpyFXTone Bender Style FuzzToneQuestTremoloTrue North PedalsTubescreamer Style OverdriveUtilityVox Style DistortionWah and Fixed WahWampler+-
2019GPXSKSignalChainMkII700-min.jpg

So it’s that usual post NAMM-haze time where I figure out the longer-term impact of NAMM, and how those new products will affect the layout, order and composition of my now sort of 40-slot pedal-chain. As noted several times - this was indeed a bumper year for really innovative and highly appealing new pedals - and I will look to accommodate a number of those as they materialise in the forthcoming months.

 

As I hinted in my last pedal-chain overview - while 2018 was very evidently...

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The Best New Pedals In and Around Winter NAMM 2019 Show

Alexander PedalsAutomatoneBeetronics FXBig Muff Style FuzzBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoDelayDemon PedalsDigital DelayDistortionDriveDumble Style OverdriveDunlop EffectsEventideExpressionFlangerFoxpedalFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzGlitchGranular DelayIbanezJHS PedalsKeeley EngineeringKlone and Transparent OverdriveLooperLoop-SwitcherMetal DistortionModulated FuzzModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveNeunaberOctave FuzzOctaverOddball DelayOddball FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdrivePhaserPitchPitch-ShiftingRainger FXRed Panda EffectsRed Witch EffectsREVV AmplificationRotary SpeakerSilicon FuzzSpaceman EffectsStrymonSuper-Fuzz StyleTape DelayTC ElectronicThopyFXTremoloTsakalis EffectsTubescreamer Style OverdriveTWA EffectsUni-Vibe and VibeUtilityVemuramWamplerWren and Cuff+-
2019GPXNAMMPedalHighlights700-min.jpg

This year’s show has seen a bumper crop of interesting new pedals. In fact I was so dazzled by all the various cool pedals that I did not take note of much else - actually not entirely as there were a few synths weirdly that I liked the look of - including the new Teenage Engineering Modular Series in particular. There were very few guitars or amps though that properly piqued my interest.

 

Special thanks to Delicious Audio / Stombox Exhibit / 60 Cycle Hum and Premier Guitar in ...

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4 Key Guitar Pedal Trends for 2019 - Smarter Pedals, More Voicings, Multi-Colour LEDs, and More Utility

Acoustic SimulatorBoostBoost and OverdriveCompressorDelayDigital DelayEQGranular DelayJackson AudioJHS PedalsKeyztoneModulationOverdriveRed Panda EffectsTubescreamer Style OverdriveUtility+-
2019GPX3KeyPedalTrends700-min.jpg

Carrying on from last year - where I somewhat correctly predicted pedals would continue to get more compact, larger numbers would adapt dual-footswitch functionality and pedalboards and pedal-chains would get increasingly larger - I have now identified 4 more prevailing trends for this year.

 

I have selected 4 pedals which underscore these trends - three of my favourites from last year, and the forthcoming significantly enhanced and improved Red Panda Particle V2. These pedals ...

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16 of the Best Glitch Effects Pedals

CatalinbreadCopilot FXDelayDigital DelayDigital ReverbDrolo EffectsDwarfcraftEnvelope Filter and Auto WahGlitchGranular DelayHexe EffectsHexe Guitar ElectronicsLooperMalekko Heavy IndustryModulationModulation WorkstationMontreal AssemblyMWFXOddball DelayOddball ModulationPitchPitch-ShiftingPladask ElektriskRecovery EffectsRed Panda EffectsReverbRing ModulationSlicer and StutterSpacey ReverbThe King of GearTKOGUtility+-
2018GPX16GlitchPedals700-min.jpg

I’m sort of getting to full saturation point with drive, distortion and fuzz pedals - with my ’2018 Year of Fuzz’ coming to a close it’s time to direct my attentions slightly further afield and in new directions. I’ve always had an interest in sort of randomised textural effects - which means that my next significant area of interest will be that roughly defined by the category of ’Glitch’.

 

Most of the featured devices here are different types ...

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2018 New Guitar Pedals of the Year

Ambient EffectsAnalog DelayBeetronics FXBitcrushing and Lo-FiBlues Driver Style OverdriveBondi EffectsBoostBoost and OverdriveBossBrown Sound DistortionBufferChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCompressorDelayDelay WorkstationDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDr ScientistDriveDryBell EffectsDual-DriveEarthQuaker DevicesElectro-HarmonixEQFlangerFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGamechanger AudioGated and Velcro FuzzGlitchGranular DelayGuitar Synth and SequencerHorizon DevicesJackson AudioJHS PedalsKlone and Transparent OverdriveLo-Fi DelayLooperMarshall Style DistortionMeris EffectsMetal DistortionModulationMulti-DriveOctaverOddball DelayOddball FuzzOrigin EffectsOverdrivePhaserPitchPitch-ShiftingPlate ReverbRed Panda EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationREVV AmplificationShimmer ReverbSpaceman EffectsSpacey ReverbSpring ReverbStone Deaf EffectsSubdecay EffectsTape DelayThorpyFXTubescreamer Style OverdriveUni-Vibe and VibeUtilityVox Style DistortionWamplerWMD DevicesZvex+-
2018GPXPedalsOfTheYear700-min.jpg

2018 has been a really surprising year for pedals - there have been quite a few unexpected innovations along the way with also some of the usual production delays and holdups. As I write this I am still waiting for my long-overdue Jackson Audio Bloom to arrive - but I expect it will be worth the delay. I would have liked to have seen the Empress Zoia despatched this year too, as sort of predicted though - I feel that it will be pushed into next year - to coincide with Winter NAMM possibly - in ...

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Keyztone ExChanger vs SIM1 XT-1 vs Alternatives

Ernie Ball Music ManFishmanGuitar AccessoriesKeyztoneLine 6SIM1Utility+-
2018GPXExChangerSim1700-min.jpg

I’ve watched a few demos of the Keystone Exchanger pedal recently, and it brought to mind a number of different technologies all trying to do the same thing really, and none more similar than the slightly older Sim 1 XT-1. I like the neatness of the Keyztone offering - 8 classic pickup sounds in one rather compact and streamlined pedal. I wonder if 8 is the right number of options as compared to Sim 1 XT-1’s 12 presets, and the 22 different variations available on Line 6 Variax ...

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The Really Useful Sub £100 Guitar Tools and Utilities Gift Guide

Crimson GuitarsEbowErnie BallGear MaintenanceGruv GearGuitar AccessoriesGuitar MaintenanceGuitar ToolsIbanezMusic NomadPlanet WavesPower SuppliesRoadie 2 TunerRoadie TunerTC ElectronicThaliaTrue ToneTunersUtilityWittner+-
2018GPXGuitarGearGifts700-min.jpg

These are all tools, utilities and gadgets that I have and love and use all the time, or are on my wishlist for imminent acquisition. I’ve chosen to stick to the more casual side of guitar maintenance - and have thus excluded things such as fret-rockers and the like. If you want to do full setup, intonation and nuanced maintenance of your guitar you will need some more serious tools than these - these are really just for everyday maintenance, string changes, quick restore, buff and polish...

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9 of the Best Chase Bliss Audio Pedals - A Full House at last!

Analog DelayBoostBoost and OverdriveChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoDelayDistortionDriveEffects Pedal MakersEQFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionKlone and Transparent OverdriveModulated FuzzModulationMulti-DriveOverdrivePhaserPitchPitch-ShiftingReverbSilicon FuzzUtilityWah and Fixed Wah+-
2018GPXChaseBlissFullHouse700-min.jpg

With the recent launch of the superb and innovative Dark World Reverb Joel Korte’s Chase Bliss Audio can now provide you with a full pedalboard’s complement of stompboxes. It’s with some sadness that I bemoan the retirement of the still superb Spectre BKM Flanger - it obviously wasn’t shifting enough units to keep its place in the lineup - but I still love and support it!

 

I really don’t think that the Dark World will ever experience similar issues - who&...

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UK Guitar Show at Olympia Highlights - Pedals and Guitars

Beetronics FXBig Muff Style FuzzBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBufferCompressorCrimson GuitarsDistortionDriveEQFlattley Guitar PedalsFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzGamechanGuitarsHeadless GuitarsKlone and Transparent OverdriveLP-Style and Single-Cut GuitarsMetal GuitarsOffset GuitarsOverdriveRat Style FuzzReiver GuitarsSBC GuitarsSG-Style GuitarsSilicon FuzzS-Style and Double-Cut GuitarsStone Wolf GuitarsThorpyFXT-Style GuitarsUK Guitar ShowUnique-Shaped GuitarsUtilityValenti GuitarsWalrus Audio+-
2018GPXThorpyFXGuitarShowPB700V2-min.jpg

So I attended the inaugural Future Publishing UK Guitar Show this past Saturday at the Olympia Exhibition Centre London - Levels 2 & 3. It was not the most auspicious day for an event in London, considering there was a strike on the Piccadilly line, and the important chunks of the Circle, District, Hammersmith & City, and Metropolitan lines were down for maintenance. I therefore ’tubed’ it to Shepherd’s Bush or Westfield essentially, and walked down from there - a ...

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News Navigation

2018 32

20 of the Best Compact Marshall Style Pedals
"I believe the official EVH fan club as such "...
3 days ago
20 of the Best Compact Marshall Style Pedals
"Hey Hector - when you say Mesa do you mean Double "...
3 days ago
20 of the Best Compact Marshall Style Pedals
"Any mesa boogie and P51/50 style pedal "...
3 days ago
The Best New Pedals In and Around Winter NAMM 2019 Show
"Regarding the Mod Workstations - that's why I'm "...
23 days ago
The Best New Pedals In and Around Winter NAMM 2019 Show
"Great overview!!!! I am really looking forward "...
23 days ago
Boss MD-500 vs Strymon Mobius - including full list of MD-500 Presets
"Ben - quality is quality wherever it comes from "...
14-Jan-2019
Boss MD-500 vs Strymon Mobius - including full list of MD-500 Presets
"What a fantastic comparison review! Yes, I would "...
13-Jan-2019
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