Archive for ‘mikrofonit’

27/09/2016

AKG C3000 – Old versus New

Maahantuoja: Studiotec

21/09/2016

Tulossa +++ Coming up +++ AKG C3000

akg-c3000-teaser

Lisätiedot: Studiotec

08/02/2016

Review: J. Leachim Guitars S&T-Style + Royal

JLeachim S&T – beauty shot 2

Jan Merivirta’s J. Leachim Guitars is still a young company, yet it already has managed to gain a reputation among guitarists.

Kitarablogi.com has had the pleasure to test drive two  J.L.G.-models – a heavily relic’d S&T-Style, along with a brand-new addition to the lineup, the semiacoustic Royal.

J. Leachim has also started to import Mojotone pickups from the USA, recently – in addition to the Mojotone-equipped review guitars, I received three further instruments carrying Mojotone pickups to try out.

JLeachim Royal – beauty shot 2

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JLeachim S&T – full front

J. Leachim Guitars have really made a mark with their heavily relic’d guitars and basses. It’s true, you can also order a ”mint” condition instrument from J.L.G., but many players have decided to go for the added mojo of a pre-worn guitar.

The J. Leachim S&T-Style (price approximately 1.600 €; includes a hard case and a custom-made leather strap) is such a mojo machine – a players solidbody electric, that combines a Stratocaster-type body with a Tele-style neck.

JLeachim S&T – headstock

JLeachim S&T – tuners

The S&T’s neck sports a relic’d satin finish, as well as a classy set of Kluson-style machine heads.

JLeachim S&T – Wilkinson vibrato

The guitar’s Wilkinson Vintage vibrato looks extremely worn, too.

This bridge is based on a vintage Fender bridge, but it features two practical improvements:

The vibrato arm is push fit with adjustable action, while the vibrato block has the string channels drilled so that they follow the octave compensation, which keeps the string pressure on the saddle uniform across all strings.

JLeachim S&T – back beauty

S&T-Style uses four vibrato springs for a very positive, muscular vibrato action that managed to stay on the right side of stiff.

JLeachim S&T – body beauty 1

The review guitar’s alder body looks like the guitar has been regularly used (and abused) on sweaty club stage for the last 50 years.

JLeachim S&T – plug receptacle

The Electrosocket jack receptacle keeps the Telecaster look, while offering much easier access for servicing and repairs that Fender’s original part.

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JLeachim Royal – full front

The J. Leachim Royal (1.600 €; includes hard case and certificate of authenticity) is a step in a new direction for J.L.G. – it’s a thinline semiacoustic guitar.

The body shape owes a lot to the venerable Telecaster, but this isn’t a straight copy, though, as it is built in an involved, multilayered fashion.

JLeachim Royal – headstock

The Royal’s one-piece bird’s eye maple neck is a true thing of beauty.

JLeachim Royal – Wilkinson tuners

The tuners are Wilkinson’s updates of vintage Kluson machines.

JLeachim Royal – bird's eye maple neck

Bird’s eye maple and abalone dots – sure looks like Custom Shop-luxury to me!

JLeachim Royal – bridge

The chunky bridge on the Royal is a quality piece of hardware, but probably not the best choice on this model. The thick base means that the bridge saddles have to adjusted quite low to achieve a comfortable action. This in turn results in the sharpish height-adjustment grub screws protruding quite some way above the top of the saddles. Shorter grub screws would make this guitar more comfortable for the plectrum hand.

JLeachim Royal – body beauty 1

The J. Leachim Royal’s body is made in the UK (in Nottingham) by a small company called Bodge Fabrications (pun intended!).

JLeachim Royal – Bodge body

The beautifully sculpted Bodge body is a layered affair made from walnut, maple, and mahogany. If you love nice woods, like I do, this body will sen shivers of delight down your spine.

JLeachim Royal – back beauty

The back of the body features a rib cage bevel for added carrying comfort.

JLeachim Royal – neck joint

The added maple block inside the neck pocket adds stiffness to the Royal’s neck joint.

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JLeachim S&T – beauty shot 1

J. Leachim’s S&T-Style is a very ergonomically sound instrument:

This guitar is lightweight, and sports a rounded 60s-style Tele neck that feels great. The fret-job is very smooth. This guitar is a fantastic player, and its vibrato works as smoothly as can be expected in a quality instrument in this price range.

JLeachim S&T – pickups

This S&T-Style came equipped with a Mojotone Rene Martinez Texas Strat pickup set. Rene Martinez was Stevie Ray Vaughan’s guitar technician, so it’s no wonder these pickups are specifically tailored to give you SRV-style tones.

The neck and (reverse-wound) middle pickup use Alnico III magnets for a bright sound with a sharp attack and a fantastically dynamic response. The bridge pickup is wound a little hotter and comes loaded with more powerful Alnico V magnets for a more muscular tone.

Here are two audio clips of the S&T-Style:

As a demo track I chose to record my own cover version of Stevie Ray Vaughan’s guitar solo on David Bowie’s hit China Girl (all guitar tracks have been recorded with the J.L.G S&T-Style):

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JLeachim Royal – beauty shot 1

J.L.G.’s Royal is a classy newcomer in the company’s range of models.

The Royal is all about the feel and sound of wood. This is a guitar that’s very hard to put down once you’ve picked it up. The semiacoustic body adds a charming vocal quality to this model’s acoustic tone.

JLeachim Royal – pickups

This Royal comes with a Mojotone set of humbucker-sized P-90 pickups, which offer you a range of different sounds, from Jazz all the way to gritty Rock.

The neck pickups is built around an Alnico IV magnet, while the slightly hotter bridge pickup comes with an Alnico V magnet:

Carlos Santana used a P-90-equipped Gibson SG Special at the beginning of his career (for example at Woodstock), which prompted me to record a Santana-tinged demo track with the J. Leachim Royal:

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JLeachim + Mojotone – teaser

Additionally, I got the chance to check out these three Mojotone pickup sets:

JLeachim + Mojotone – pickups 4

A J.L.G. TeleGacy loaded with Mojotone’s ’59 PAF Clone Reverse Zebra humbuckers:

Fender Adam Clayton JB + Mojotone 70s Clone JB pickups

A Fender Adam Clayton Signature Jazz Bass with a Mojotone 70s Clone JB Set.

JLeachim + Mojotone – pickups 3

A J.L.G. TeleGacy with a pair of covered Mojotone ’59 PAF Clone humbuckers. This guitar sported push/pull-switches to split the humbuckers for single coil type tones:

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JLeachim S&T – body beauty 2

Finland really is blessed with a very diverse list of homegrown guitars, and J. Leachim is definitely one company to keep on your radar.

J. Leachim’s S&T-Style will make you boogie till the cows come home, and the company’s new Royal model is a beautiful new take on the Thinline Telecaster theme.

JLeachim Royal – body beauty 2

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J. Leachim Guitars S&T-Style + Royal

S&T-Style – 1.600 €

Royal – 1.600 €

Contact: J. Leachim Guitars

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Pros:

+ designed and hand finished in Finland

+ quality of finish

+ workmanship

+ playability

+ sound

Cons:

– protruding bridge saddle screws (Royal only)

29/01/2016

Testipenkissä: J. Leachim Guitars S&T-Style + Royal

JLeachim S&T – beauty shot 2

Jan Merivirran perustama J. Leachim Guitars on vielä melko nuori yritys, mutta se on jo onnistunut nousemaan tietoisuuteen kitaristien keskuudessa.

Tässä jutussa testataan kahta eri J.L.G.-kitaramallia – reilusti relikoutu S&T-Style, sekä firman uusi, puoliakustinen Royal.

J. Leachim on hiljattain myös alkanut tuoda Suomeen huippulaadukkaita Mojotone-mikrofoneja USA:sta – testikitaroiden lisäksi sain vielä kolme eri Mojotone-malleilla varustettua soitinta kokeiltavaksi.

JLeachim Royal – beauty shot 2

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JLeachim S&T – full front

J. Leachim Guitarsin erikoisalaa ovat – usein hyvin rankalla kädellä toteutetut – Relic-viimeistelyt. Totta, firmalta saa myös täysin ”koskemattomia” soittimia, mutta moni kitaristi on valinnut relikoidun J.L.G.-kitaran juuri viimeistelyn tuoman mojon vuoksi.

S&T-Style (1.600 €; laukku ja custom-hihna kuuluvat hintaan) on juuri tällainen mojo machine – soittamista varten tehty sähkökitara, jossa yhdistyvät sulavasti Fender Telecasterin kaula ja Stratocasterin runko.

JLeachim S&T – headstock

JLeachim S&T – tuners

S&T:n relikoidussa kaulassa on mattaviimeistely, sekä laadukkaat Kluson-tyyliset virittimet.

JLeachim S&T – Wilkinson vibrato

Kitaran Wilkinson Vintage -vibrato näyttää todella kuluneelta.

Vibratalla on muuten tarkka kopio vahnasta Strato-tallasta, paitsi että vibrakampea työnnetään tallassa olevaan nylonkaulukseen, jonka ansiosta kammen istuvuutta on parannettu tuntuvasti.

JLeachim S&T – back beauty

S&T-Stylen vibratallassa käytetään neljä jousta, ja tuntuma on sopivasti jämäkkä, muttei liian jäykkä.

JLeachim S&T – body beauty 1

Soittimen leppärunko näyttää kuin sitä olisi käytetty jo ainakin 50 vuotta klubikiertueilla.

JLeachim S&T – plug receptacle

Electrosocket-jakkikupin ansiosta jakin huolto tai vaihto käy paljon helpommin kuin perinne-Teleissä.

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JLeachim Royal – full front

J. Leachim Royal (1.600 €; laukku ja aitoustodistus kuuluvat hintaan) on firmalle uusi aluevaltaus – se on thinline-tyylinen puoliakustinen sähkökitara.

Rungon muoto on eittämättä hieman Telecaster-tyylinen, mutta todellisuudessa sillä on taidokas, monikerroksinen rakenne.

JLeachim Royal – headstock

Royalin yksiosainen, linnunsilmävaahterasta veistetty kaula on erittäin kaunis.

JLeachim Royal – Wilkinson tuners

Soittimen nykyaikaiset Kluson-kopiot tulevat Wilkinsonilta.

JLeachim Royal – bird's eye maple neck

Linnunsilmävaahtera ja otemerkit abalone-helmiäisistä – tässä voisi jo puhua aidosta Custom Shop -meiningistä!

JLeachim Royal – bridge

Royalin tanakka talla on kyllä sinänsä erittäin laadukas valinta, mutta sen pohjalevy on niin jämäkkä, että tässä kitaramallissa tallapalojen korkeussäätöön tarkoitetut ruuvit jäävät törröttämään hieman liikkaa tallan yläreunan yli. Lyhyemmät ruuvit olisivat paljon mukavammat plektrakädelle.

JLeachim Royal – body beauty 1

J. Leachim Royal -kitaran puoliakustinen runko tulee pieneltä englantilaiselta soitinpajalta nimeltään Bodge Fabrications.

Tässä piilee brittihuumori, sillä sana bodge (kirjoitetaan myös botch) tarkoittaa ”möhliä”, ”hutiloida” tai ”toheloida”.

JLeachim Royal – Bodge body

Bodge-runko on nimittäin tehty erittäin huolellisesti ja kauniisti. Rungon rakenne on monikerroksinen, ja siihen käytetään pähkinäpuuta, vaahteraa, sekä mahonkia.

Rungon kansi on myös kaareva reunoissaan…

JLeachim Royal – back beauty

…ja sen kääntöpuolelta löytyy myös ns. mukavuusviiste.

JLeachim Royal – neck joint

Kaulataskuun liimattu vaahterapala lisää lujuutta Royalin ruuviliitokseen.

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JLeachim S&T – beauty shot 1

J. Leachim S&T-Stylen ergonomia on erinomainen:

Soitin on kevyt ja sen ’60-tyylinen pyöreä Tele-kaula istuu erittäin hyvin ainakin omaan käteeni. S&T:n nauhatyö on kiitettävällä tasolla. Soittimen tatsi on kohdallaan ja kitaran vibratalla toimii niin kuin pitää tämän hintaisessa laatusoittimessa.

JLeachim S&T – pickups

Tähän S&T-Styleen on asennettu Mojotonen Rene Martinez Texas Strat -mikkisetti. Martinez oli Stevie Ray Vaughanin kitarateknikko, ja hän on kehittelyt tätä settiä juuri SRV-tyylistä musiikkia varten.

Kaula- ja keskimikrofoneilla on Alnico III -magneetteja, jotta soundissa olisi kirkas atakki, sekä erinomainen dynamiikka. Tallamikrofoni on hiukan tuhdimpaa Texas-sorttia, jossa paksummasta kelasta ja voimakkaammista Alnico V -magneeteista lähtee isompi soundi.

Tässä S&T-Stylen ääninäyteet:

Demobiisiksi äänitin oman version Stevie Ray Vaughanin kitarasoolosta David Bowien China Girl -biisissä (kaikki kitararaidat soitettu J.L.G. S&T-kitaralla):

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JLeachim Royal – beauty shot 1

J.L.G. Royal on mielestäni upea soitin, ja J. Leachim Guitarsille onnistunut uusi aluevaltaus.

Puufaneille tämä on ihan vastustamaton sähkökitara, jossa soitettavuus ja ulkonäkö ovat erinomaisessa tasapainossa. Puoliakustisuus tuo mukavasti laulumaista klangia Royalin akustiseen sointiin.

JLeachim Royal – pickups

Royal-mallissa käytetään Mojotonen humbucker-kokoisia P-90-mikrofoneja, joista löytyy sekä Jazz- että Rock-tyylisiä soundeja.

Kaulamikrofonissa on Alnico IV -magneetti, kun taas tallamikissä käytetään Alnico V -magneettia ja hieman enemmän käämilankaa:

Carlos Santana käytti uransa alussa (esimerkiksi Woodstockissa) kahdella P-90:llä varustettua Gibson SG Special -kitaraa. Isona Santana-fanina minun piti luonnollisesti äänittää samantyylinen demobiisi J. Leachim Royalilla:

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JLeachim + Mojotone – teaser

Sain myös nämä kolme Mojotone-mikrofoneilla varustettua soitinta kokeiltavaksi:

JLeachim + Mojotone – pickups 4

J.L.G. TeleGacy Mojotone ’59 PAF Clone Reverse Zebra -humbuckereilla:

Fender Adam Clayton JB + Mojotone 70s Clone JB pickups

Fender Adam Clayton Signature Jazz Bass, jossa oli Mojotone 70s Clone JB -mikrofonit asennettuina:

JLeachim + Mojotone – pickups 3

J.L.G. TeleGacy kuorillisilla Mojotone ’59 PAF Clone -humbuckereilla. Tämän kitaran kytkennössä oli nostokytkimet volume-potikoissa, joilla saadaan mikrofonit puolitettua:

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JLeachim S&T – body beauty 2

Miksi mennä merta edemmäs kalaan, kun koti-Suomesta saa niin laadukkaita soittimia?

J. Leachim S&T-Stylessa on mojoa vaikka muille jakaa, kun taas J.L.G. Royal on erittäin onnistunut muunnelma Thinline Telecaster -teemasta.

JLeachim Royal – body beauty 2

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J. Leachim Guitars S&T-Style + Royal

S&T-Style – 1.600 €

Royal – 1.600 €

Lisätiedot: J. Leachim Guitars

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Plussat:

+ sunniteltu ja viimeistelty Suomessa

+ viimeistelyn laatu

+ työnjälki

+ soitettavuus

+ soundi

Miinukset:

– tallapalojen säätöruuvit (vain Royal-mallissa)

28/01/2016

J. Leachim Royal – The Kitarablogi-video

JLeachim Royal – beauty shot 2

Contact: J. Leachim Guitars

25/01/2016

Now on SoundCloud: J. Leachim Guitars + Mojotone Pickups

JLeachim + Mojotone – pickups 4

Contact: J. Leachim Guitars

19/01/2016

Guitar Porn: J. Leachim Guitars + Mojotone Pickups

JLeachim + Mojotone – teaser 3

JLeachim + Mojotone – teaser

JLeachim + Mojotone – teaser 2

Contact: J. Leachim Guitars

13/01/2016

Now on SoundCloud – J. Leachim S-Style + Mojotone René Martinez Texas Strat pickups

Demo Track (cover of the guitar solo section from David Bowie’s ”China Girl”)

• Bass: Fender Adam Clayton Signature Jazz Bass with Mojotone 70s Clone JB pickups

• Guitar: J. Leachim Guitars S-Style with Mojotone René Martinez Texas Strat pickups

• Rhythm guitars – left channel: middle + bridge PUs; right channel: neck + middle PUs

• Lead guitar – neck PU

• Bass recorded using a SansAmp Bass Driver DI

• Guitar amp: Blackstar HT-1R

Contact: J. Leachim Guitars

08/01/2016

Tulossa ••• Coming soon ••• J. Leachim Guitars + Mojotone Pickups

JLeachim 3

JLeachim 2

JLeachim 1

Lisätiedot: J. Leachim Guitars

26/11/2015

Review: Vuorensaku Custom Pickups S. Kamiina set

Vuorensaku Pickups Package

Not all custom pickups are created equal.

Most custom winders seem to be on the hunt for the ”ultimate vintage experience”, whatever that really means. Those makers try to source the most vintage-correct materials and try to zone in on the right way to bring their pickups to the desired authentic NOS specifications. For a Fender Stratocaster this could mean either going for a dry and woody Fifties-style tone or for a juicier and grittier Sixties version.

Vuorensaku’s Saku Vuori fearlessly approaches the subject of custom pickups from a different angle. The result is a pickup set with a refreshingly personal sound that isn’t frantically trying to reclaim past glories.

The Vuorensaku S. Kamiina set’s (prices starting at around 200 €) is based on thicker magnet wire, compared to what an original Fender pickup uses. The S. Kamiina set is wound using 40 AWG gauged wire, while most classic Fender creations use 42 AWG wire (except the Telecaster’s neck pickup, which is wound with a thinner 43 AWG wire). The thicker wire in the S. Kamiina set is complemented with Alnico II magnets, which are a milder type of magnet than Fender’s preferred Alnico V variety.

Vuorensaku’s set includes a reverse wound/reverse polarity middle pickup, resulting in hum-cancelling switch positions two and five. The set’s bridge pickup has received a few extra windings for a little bit of extra output.

In terms of its electronic values the Vuorensaku set clearly differs from your traditional Strat pickups:

The resistance of a regular Stratocaster singlecoil lies in the ballpark of around six kilo-ohms, with a typical inductance of  2,3-2,4 henries. The pickups in the S. Kamiina set read 2,2 kΩ for resistance (bridge pickup: 2,3 kΩ) with an inductance of two henries.

Judging by these numbers only, we can surmise that the Vuorensaku pickup set will probably sound brighter than a traditional vintage Strat set, while also having a slightly lower output.

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Vuorensaku Custom Pickups S. Kamiina Set

Saku Vuori was kind enough to provide a S. Kamiina-equipped Classic Series Fender 70s Stratocaster for this review. The guitar has an ash body, as well as a maple neck with a maple fingerboard. For comparisons I used my own Fender Japan Stratocaster with one-piece maple neck and an alder body.

I was right in expecting the  Vuorensaku set to sound brighter than most vintage-style Stratocaster pickups, but the supposed drop in output level is of a more theoretical nature than of real practical importance. The S. Kamiina set imbues the 70s Reissue with a very cool Gretsch- or Rickenbacker-type jangly tone and grit. The Vuorensaku pickups also feature a cleaner lower mid-range, when compared to traditional Stratocaster pickups.

For comparison purposes the first (neck pickup) and last (bridge pickup) phrases of the sound clip have been played using my own vintage-style Strat, while the five phrases in between have been recorded with the S. Kamiina set (starting with the neck pickup):

The presence lift in the Vuorensaku set is also easy to spot in distorted sounds. The S. Kamiina’s delivery is a bit more aggressive and in-yer-face, which isn’t a bad thing at all.

For comparison purposes the first (neck pickup) and last (bridge pickup) phrases of the sound clip have been played using my own vintage-style Strat, while the five phrases in between have been recorded with the S. Kamiina set (starting with the neck pickup):

The demo song contains four guitar tracks:

• two rhythm guitar parts – left channel: neck and middle pickup; right channel: neck pickups

• a mystically floating backing guitar: middle and bridge pickup

• lead guitar: neck pickup with the tone control turned halfway down

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Turenki Tonefest 2015 002

If you’re an stickler for authentic vintage specs, the Vuorensaku S. Kamiina set probably isn’t what you’re looking for – these pickups are no mere vintage clones.

If you’re after a brighter tone, though, especially if you dislike the neutrality of many active pickups, the S. Kamiina set is definitely one to check out! Vuorensaku’s pickups will breathe life into a dark-sounding guitar, while also giving your controls a wider tonal range to work with. These are pickups that won’t mush up.

By the way:

Saku Vuori applies his ”low output principle” to other Vuorensaku pickups, too, like the Telecaster- and P-90-style pickups he uses in his handcrafted Vuorensaku T. Family guitar models.

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Vuorensaku Custom Pickups S. Kamiina set

Stratocaster sets start from 200 €

Additional options: pickup cover, relicing

Contact: Vuorensaku

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Pros:

+ handmade in Finland

+ original sound, no vintage copies

+ rw/rp middle pickup