Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Boss ME-70 guitar effects pedal

Hi guys,

I want to let you know about my first experiences with my new Boss ME-70 multiple effects pedal. Maybe this can help you with your own choice of effects. First of all, I was NOT looking for expensive high-end effects. I'm not an effect guy anyway; my preferred setup is a tube amp with a wah-pedal and a booster/drive-pedal between the guitar and the amp. I usually use a cry-baby wah and a Hughes&Kettner Tube Factor.

OK, having said that, there are occasions where I need some other effects. When I play more commercial stuff it's nice to have more sounds, a bit of chorus, delay, maybe an octaver. So I checked out some effect pedals and soon it became clear to me that for my purposes a multi-effects pedal would offer the best value. After some research and testing, my two favorites were the Vox Tonelab and the Boss ME-70. And these are the main reasons why I finally went for the ME-70:
  • the ME-70's user-interface works better for me
  • much better sound when plugged directly into a PA (maybe this was only because the ME-70 is much easier to tweak, but then again this is a good reason to get the ME-70 ...)
  • I like that the expression pedal always acts as a volume pedal when switched off
  • I could get a better clean sound from the ME-70 than from the Vox (another user-interface problem? ...) 
The effects that I need are all pretty good in the ME-70, but the ones in the Tonelab were also OK. One more thing I thought about was the tube in the Vox Tonelab; I couldn't actually hear that it gives a great advantage over the solid-state modeller of the ME-70. So I thought I'd rather avoid the risk of a tube in such a unit, because I guess that if the Tonelab gets kicked around it's much more vulnerable than the ME-70 (I haven't actually checked this ...).

Anyway, I think that there are not many general guidelines when looking for an effects-pedal. Nowadays almost all of them deliver good sounds if you know how to adjust/program them well. It mainly depends on what you actually need it for, which type of amp (or no amp at all?) you use, and if you're looking for special features such as a USB-output for recording etc.

If you like, share your ideas and opinions with me. Good luck with your own choices!

best, mathias

Monday, March 5, 2012

Live gig with Yamaha Silent Guitar SLG130NW

Hello everybody,

I would like to update you on my experiences with my new Yamaha silent guitar. Last weekend I played my first live show exclusively with this guitar and I was actually pretty happy. We had quite some time during the soundcheck, so I could experiment a bit. Just for fun I tried to go directly into the mixer (jack input, no DI) but the result was not that great, as expected. Then I connected my LR Baggs Para DI box and after some EQing I got a really nice sound. What I did was leave the mixer EQ flat and add some presence and treble from the Para DI. I also added a little reverb from the mixer. The reverb built into the Yamaha guitar is only useful for practicing with headphones, definitely not for rehearsing or playing live. My conclusion is that I will keep this guitar and I will use it live whenever I need a nylon string sound.