Posts tagged ‘basso’

03/08/2015

Tulossa elokuussa *** Coming in August *** Juha Savisalo 6-String Bass

Juha Savisalo

28/05/2015

Review: Blackstar ID:Core BEAM

Blackstar ID_Core Beam – front

Blackstar’s ID:Core BEAM (current price in Finland: 299 €), which was introduced at this year’s NAMM Show, is one of a new breed of amplifiers:

The BEAM is a so-called ”lifestyle amp” that combines a practical solution for living room practising with a Bluetooth stereo system with a suitable Rock look.

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Blackstar ID_Core Beam – angle right

The Blackstar ID:Core BEAM is a genuine ID:Core-combo, which means that all its parameters are accessible via Blackstar’s Insider software.

The newcomer is a stereophonic amp with its 20 watts of power running into a pair of three-inch speakers. Blackstar’s Super Wide Stereo-effect – a feature taken from the company’s larger ID:Core combos – can also be applied to the BEAM’s music player, with its own, separate width adjustment.

Blackstar ID_Core Beam – back

Apart from the power switch, the ID:Core BEAM’s back panel features the input jack for the (optional) footswitch. The rest of the combo’s controls and connectors can be found on the top-mounted control panel.

Blackstar ID_Core Beam – control panel

The larger ID:Core combos are well-equipped practice amps, but the BEAM has a couple of additional aces up its sleeve:

The ID:Core BEAM offers you 12 amp models (Voices). The first set (the Voices LED glows red) deals with six amp models for electric guitar, while the second set (green LED) gives you two Voices each for acoustic guitar, electric bass, and acoustic guitar simulation.

The amp section has three physical knobs for adjustment – gain, volume, and Blackstar’s patented ISF-control, which control’s the amp’s overall tonal character. Using the Insider-software you will be able to access additional parameters for deep editing, like a three-band EQ-section or a noise gate.

The effects department features four different modulation effects, four delay types, and four reverbs. The two Voices for bass swap the reverbs for bass distortion. You can choose one effect from each effect section for a Voice (meaning up to three simultaneous effects).

The small combo also features a built-in tuner.

The music signal, sent to the BEAM from your mobile device via Bluetooth, naturally isn’t sent through the combo’s amp modelling circuits. It is fed into the signal chain just before the power amp section. The ID:Core BEAM allows you to play along to the Bluetooth signal, of course!

The USB-port isn’t only used to remote control the amp’s parameters via Insider – this lifestyle combo doubles as a full-blown USB sound card. The BEAM can be run in three different USB-modes, which allows you to either send a stereo signal of the amp sound to your sequencer, or send two discrete mono signals (with one channel completely dry, and the second channel with all the amp modelling and effects) to your recording software. The third USB-mode is called Reamping, and it’s used to feed a dry guitar signal off your audio sequencer into the ID:Core BEAM and record the effected signal onto a separate recording track simultaneously.

The signal level of the USB-audio can be controlled directly (and independently of the amp’s master volume settings), making it very easy to set the correct recording levels for your personal studio setup.

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Blackstar ID_Core Beam – front angle

Blackstar have really hit the bull’s eye with their new lifestyle combo!

Listening to music with a very critical ear you can hear a little bit of hiss, but it isn’t loud enough to spoil the fun. Remember, the ID:Core BEAM isn’t meant to be a studio monitor, but rather a nifty, compact music player for your bookcase – something this little combo handles with much aplomb. You wouldn’t necessarily expect such a full and strong delivery from such a compact unit.

The ID:Core BEAM also sounds great as a guitar and bass amp, which isn’t quite as surprising, considering this combo’s pedigree.

The guitar amp voices have plenty of character, and the effects have more than ample depth and width:

The high quality of the acoustic simulator was something of a positive surprise:

Despite its diminutive size, the BEAM also delivers when it comes to electric bass tones:

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Blackstar ID_Core Beam – angle left

The Blackstar ID:Core BEAM succeeds to combine a programmable practice combo for guitar and bass, a Bluetooth-player, and a USB sound card into a very enticing package. In addition to being a great living room amp, the BEAM could also prove a handy little amp for guitar instructors.

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Blackstar ID:Core BEAM

299 €

Finnish distributor: Musamaailma

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Pros:

+ well thought-out concept

+ value for money

+ feature-packed guitar and bass amp

+ adjustable Super Wide Stereo-function

+ USB sound card

+ full sound

Cons:

– high noise gate setting on default bass distortion

22/05/2015

Testipenkissä: Blackstar ID:Core BEAM

Blackstar ID_Core Beam – front

Vuoden alussa NAMM-messuilla esitelty Blackstar ID:Core BEAM (299 €) kuuluu uuteen, nopeasti kasvavaan vahvistinkategoriaan:

Se on niin kutsuttu ”lifestyle amp”, joka on samalla sekä hyödyllinen pikkukombo harjoitteluun että kitaristin imagoon sopiva Bluetooth-vahvistin musiikin kuuntelua varten.

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Blackstar ID_Core Beam – angle right

Blackstar ID:Core BEAM on aito ID:Core-kombo mikä tarkoittaa, että sen kaikkiin parametreihin pääsee käsiksi Blackstarin oman Insider-softan kautta.

Uutuuskombo on stereofoninen, ja sen 20 watin tehoa pusketaan ulos kahdesta kolmen tuuman kaiuttimista. Isoista ID:Coreista tuttu Super Wide Stereo -efekti toimii BEAM-kombossa myös musiikin kuuntelussa, ja sen vaikutusta voi säätää erikseen.

Blackstar ID_Core Beam – back

ID:Core BEAM:n takaseinästä löytyy sähköliittimen lisäksi jakki jalkakytkimelle (maksullinen lisävaruste). Kaikki muut liittimet on sijoitettu isolle etupaneelille.

Blackstar ID_Core Beam – control panel

BEAM:n isot sisarukset ovat jo todella hyvin varustettuja, mutta pikkukombo panee ominaisuutensa runsaudella vielä selvästi paremmaksi:

Vahvistinmallinnuksia löytyy tässä peräti 12 kappaletta. Ensimmäinen satsi (Voice-ledi palaa punaisena) on varattu kuudelle eri sähkökitarakanavalle, kun taas toisesta satsista (vihreä ledi) löytyy kaksi vahvistintyyppiä akustiselle kitaralle, kaksi akustisen kitaran mallinnusta, sekä kaksi ohjelmaa sähköbassolle.

Vahvistinosasto tarjoaa kolme fyysistä säädintä soundien muokkaamiseksi – gainin ja volumen lisäksi löytyy vielä Blackstarin patentoima, yleissoundiin vaikuttava ISF-toiminto. Insider-softalla pääsee säätämään sitten tarkemmin muitakin parametrejä, kuten EQ:t tai kohinaporttia.

Efektiosasto tarjoaa neljä modulaatioefektiä, neljä viivetyyppiä, sekä neljä eri kaikua. Bassovahvistimien kanssa on kaiun sijaan lisätty bassosärö. Jokaisesta efektityypistä voi valita yhden per vahvistinmalli, siis samanaikaisesti voidaan käyttää korkeintaan kolmea efektiä.

Pikkukombossa on myös kätevä sisäinen viritysmittari.

Bluetooth:n kautta vastaanotettu audiosignaali ei luonnollisesti kulje mallinnusosion läpi, vaan se lisätään ID:Core BEAM -kombon signaalitielle vasta kitaravahvistimen jälkeen. Bluetooth-musiikin kanssa voi tietysti soittaa mukaan!

USB-liitintä ei käytetä ainoastaan Insider-softan pyörittämiseen, vaan tämä lifestyle-kombo on myös täysverinen usb-äänikortti. BEAM:lla on kolme eri USB Audio -moodia – vahvistin pystyy lähettämään joko stereofonista kitarasignaalia efekteillä höystettynä sekvensserille tai kaksi monosignaalia, joista yksi on kuiva tulosignaali ja toinen koko mallinnuksen läpi käynyt monosignaali. Näiden kahden lisäksi on tarjolla vielä erittäin kätevä Reamping-tila, jossa sekvensseristä lähetetty prosessoimaton kitararaita viedään ID:Core-kombon läpi ja mallinnettu signaali äänitetään toiseen sekvensseriraitaan.

USB-signaalitasoa pystyy säätämään itsenäisesti ja riippumatta kombon masterista, minkä ansiosta usb:n kautta lähetetyn voimakkuuden saa aina omalle äänityssoftalle sopivaksi.

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Blackstar ID_Core Beam – front angle

Kyllä, nyt täytyy sanoa, että Blackstarin uusi lifestyle-kombo on täysosuma!

Musiikin kuuntelussa on havaittavissa pikkusen kohinaa, mutta se ei nouse lainkaan häiritsevästi esiin. ID:Core BEAM ei ole tarkoitettukaan studiomonoriksi, vaan kirjahyllyn musiikkikeskukseksi, ja se asia on kombolla suveräänisti hallussa. Musiikki kuulostaa yllättävän täyteläiseltä, ja myös sitä volyymin määrää on tarjolla kiitettävän runsaasti.

Myös kitara- ja bassosoundien osilta Blackstar-uutuus ei jätä mielestäni toivomiseen varaa!

Kitarasoundit soivat erittäin hyvin, ja myös BEAM:n efektitarjonta on varsin maukas:

Akustisen kitaran mallintaminen onnistuu pikkukombolla yllättävän hyvin:

Vaikka tämä Blackstar-uutuus on hyvin kompakti tapaus, jopa BEAM-kombon bassosoundit kuulostavat mukavan meheviltä:

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Blackstar ID_Core Beam – angle left

Blackstar ID:Core BEAM yhdistää erittäin onnistuneesti mallintavan harjoituskombon kitaralle (ja bassolle), usb-äänikortin, sekä tehokkaan Bluetooth-kaiuttimen. Ainakin omasta mielestäni tämä uutuuskombo sopii todella hyvin – olohuonekäytön ohella – myös opetusvahvistimeksi.

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Blackstar ID:Core BEAM

299 €

Lisätiedot: Musamaailma

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Plussat:

+ toimiva konsepti

+ hinta-laatu-suhde

+ hyvin varusteltu, ohjelmoitava kitara- ja basso-osasto

+ säädettävä Super Wide Stereo -toiminto

+ USB-äänikortti

+ täyteläinen soundi

Miinukset:

– voimakas kohinaportti bassosärön tehdasasetuksissa

21/05/2015

Blackstar ID:Core Beam – Soundcloud

Lisätiedot: Musamaailma

18/05/2015

Testi ilmestyy perjantaina – Blackstar ID:Core Beam

Blackstar ID_Core Beam – angle left

Lisätiedot: Musamaailma

06/05/2015

Testi tulossa… Review coming soon… Blackstar ID:Core Beam

MM 2015 – Blackstar IDCore Beam

Blackstar ID Core Beam – controls – stock

beam-hub

Lisätiedot: Musamaailma

01/04/2015

ESP 40th Anniversary – Japan Factory Tour

13/06/2014

Review: EBS FuzzMo

EBS FuzzMo – top

The good people of EBS Sweden are now bringing a healthy dose of fuzz to the bassist’s toolbox.

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EBS FuzzMo – angle 1

The EBS FuzzMo (current price in Finland: 169,90 €) is a fuzz-type high gain distortion developed especially for bass.

This stompbox is made in China to the EBS’ exacting standards. It’s a sturdy pedal with very positive feeling controls.

The FuzzMo can be powered in three ways:

If you use an EBS amp from the Drome-, Gorm-, HD- or TD-series, you can use a TRS-cable (aka a stereo cable) to feed phantom power from the amp to the effect pedal.

EBS FuzzMo – battery

The FuzzMo pedal also runs off a standard 9 V battery, but you will need a screwdriver to take off the base plate first.

EBS FuzzMo – angle 2

The third alternative is to employ a Boss-type power supply (9 V DC, centre negative) to fire up the stompbox.

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EBS FuzzMo – controls

Even though the EBS FuzzMo looks somewhat similar to the company’s Billy Sheehan -pedal, the controls on the fuzz work in a different way.

The FuzzMo doesn’t do ”nice and sweet” – the Gain control offers fuzz from medium-crunchy to balls-to-the-wall-fuzz. Shape adjusts the tone of the fuzz effect – not in the way a traditional tone control does, but rather by changing the waveform of the fuzz signal. At seven o’clock the sound is quite warm and organic with the waveform approaching a square, while five o’clock is far brighter and more aggressive with the waveform resembling a triangle.

The mini-switch underneath the FuzzMo-logo (called Character) also plays an important part in the stompbox’ sound:

Switched to the left no EQ’ing is applied to the signal (FLAT). In the middle position there’s a slight attenuation of the mid-range. SCOOP on the right side results in a very Metal-style scooped-mid tone with plenty of bite.

Modern bass effects often split the bass signal at the input. One half is fed through the effect, while the other half is kept dry and mixed into the wet signal before it reaches the output. The advantage of doing things this way is that it enables you to keep your bottom end and dynamic attack intact.

This is just the way EBS’ FuzzMo works, too:

You use the Volume knob to adjust the fuzz signal’s volume level, and then use the Blend control to add the desired amount of dry bass. This feature is especially important in fuzz pedals for bass, because the hard clipping of a fuzz effect practically negates all your playing dynamics by design. With the FuzzMo there will be no problems with your tone becoming mushy, clogged up and indistinct, because the Blend control lets you restore your bass guitar’s punch and low end.

Here’s a bit recorded with a Jazz Bass (both pickups on) and a relatively low Gain setting:

In this clip I added some more fuzz and bite to a Rickenbacker played with a plectrum:

Thanks to the ability to blend in the dry signal, the EBS FuzzMo also works extremely well with a five-string (in this case a Yamaha BB with active EMGs):

Note that on all these audio clips the Gain control stayed below one o’clock. If you want you can take things much, much further with this EBS-pedal!

EBS FuzzMo – angle 3

The FuzzMo is a typical EBS-pedal – it’s a sturdy, pro-quality stompbox and it sounds great. If you’re a purveyor of sleazy, dirty and aggressive bass tones, you should definitely give this baby a spin!

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EBS Sweden FuzzMo

169,90 €

Finnish distributor: F-Musiikki

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Pros:

+ build quality

+ can be powered in three ways

+ sound optimised for bass

+ three-way EQ-switch

+ Blend control

+ offers a lot of gain

Cons:

– no quick access to battery

20/05/2014

Pictures from Bass Day 2014

Bassopäivä 2014 – yleisö

Bass Day Finland 2014 had a programme filled to the brim with highlights.

In addition to artist clinics there were gear demos, featuring Amfisound Guitars, Fender, DLX Music, among others.

Bassopäivä 2014 – Jan-Olof Strandberg

Bassopäivä 2014 – Puppe Strandberg

Here you can seen Soundtools’ product specialist (and bassist extraordinaire) Jan-Olof Strandberg demoing gear from Mayones, Ampeg, TC Electronic and Audio-Technica.

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Bassopäivä 2014 – Jyri Helko + Tuomas Rauhala

For The Imperium’s super-tight rhythm section of Jyri Helko (bass) and Tuomas Rauhala (drums), showed the audience the inner workings of a Progressive Metal band.

Bassopäivä 2014 – Tuomas Rauhala

Bassopäivä 2014 – Jyri Helko

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Bassopäivä 2014 – Jerry Meehan

Bass Day main man Marko Liski’s biggest coup was securing Robbie Williams’ rhythm section of Jerry Meehan (bass) and Karl Brazil (drums) for a clinic.

Bassopäivä 2014 – Karl Brazil 2

Bassopäivä 2014 – Jerry Meehan + Karl Brazil

14/05/2014

Review: Amfisound Raudus Bass

Amfisound Guitars is a small company from the northern Finnish town of Oulu. Run by two master luthiers, Amfisound offers a surprisingly wide variety of different guitar and bass models, as well doing a lot of customising and repair jobs. Kitarablogi visited Amfisound’s workshop late last year – read all about it HERE.

Amfisound have introduced a new bass model recently, called the Raudus Bass, which is the subject of this review.

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Amfisound Raudus Bass – full front

The Amfisound Raudus Bass (prices for EU-customers starting from 2,520 €) clearly takes its inspiration from Fender’s classic Jazz Bass, but this new Finnish (passive) bass offers a number of modern updates and improvements. The easiest things to notice on first sight are probably the added 21st fret and the much deeper cutaway.

Amfisound Raudus Bass – full back

The Raudus sports a body made from Finnish alder and a bolt-on maple neck.

The neck comes finished in a very thin satin lacquer, while the body is gloss finished in a glorious tri-colour sunburst.

Amfisound Raudus Bass – headstock

Our review sample of the Amfisound Raudus features two differences to the basic model – different tuning machines and different pickups.

Amfisound Raudus Bass – tuners

This Raudus comes equipped with a set of Hipshot’s UltraLite tuners (additional charge: 50 €), which are built from aircraft-grade aluminium. The UltraLite machines work extremely smoothly and precisely, and they efficiently cut down on surplus headstock weight, which is a good thing on such a traditionally-inspired long scale bass, such as the Raudus.

The two-way truss rod is accessed from the headstock side of the neck.

Amfisound Raudus Bass – fretboard

The outstanding standard of workmanship displayed in the Raudus-model’s fretwork, is but one of many points bearing clear testament to the world-class standard of Finnish luthiery! This is genuine custom shop quality.

The fretboard is made of Indian rosewood, and it’s sporting 21 medium-jumbo sized frets.

Amfisound Raudus Bass – neck joint

Amfisound’s rounded body heel makes excursions to the dusty end of the neck very comfortable, indeed.

Amfisound Raudus Bass – bridge

The bridge is a quality copy of the original, late-Sixties Fender bridge – if it ain’t broken, don’t fix it.

Amfisound Raudus Bass – pickups

The review sample comes with a set of Jarno Salo Pickups from Finland. The basic version uses Swedish Lundgrens.

Amfisound Raudus Bass – controls

This instrument offers you Jazz Bass-type controls – separate volume-knobs for each pickup, plus a master tone-control.

Amfisound Raudus Bass – electronics

Amfisound’s workmanship is spot-on and very crisp – even under the hood.

Amfisound Raudus Bass – body beauty 2

The list of available custom options from Amfisound is very long, and includes (in the Raudus-model’s case) an ash body, different bridges and/or tuners, as well as active Glockenklang-electronics (among other things). For more detailed information you should contact Amfisound’s Tomi or Sampo.

There’s also a five-string Raudus on offer, which is built with a longer scale of 35 inches.

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Amfisound Raudus Bass – beauty shot 1

Amfisound’s Raudus Bass is a real corker of an instrument, with its sound and playability second to none.

The flatter-than-vintage fingerboard radius (9.5″) gives the slender neck a suitably modern playing feel. Thanks to Amfisound’s exemplary fretwork, our review sample’s low action (E: 2.0 mm/g: 1.6 mm) was completely free of annoying fret buzz or string rattle.

I’m a devoted Jazz Bass-fan, which made me feel right at home playing the Raudus. Yes, it’s true that the Amfisound offers much better top fret access, but overall this new bass feels like a dear old friend.

And this bass’ sound is outstanding, too, dishing out oodles of classic, Jazz Bass-style tones.

Jarno Salo’s excellent pickups are singlecoil designs, with the bridge pickup being reverse-wound and reverse-polarity in relation to the neck unit. This means that using both pickups together gets rid of any possible electromagnetic hum and buzz (from transformers, lighting or displays).

In terms of sound, these Salo-pickups really give you all those classic tones you’d expect from a bass such as this.

Listen to these three audio clips. Each clip has the neck pickup first, followed by both pickups on, and the bridge pickup going last:

Amfisound Raudus Bass – back beauty 1

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Amfisound Raudus Bass – beauty shot 2

The Amfisound Raudus Bass is a very fine example Finnish luthiery, there’s no two ways about this. Finns must be very lucky to find such fine instruments right at their doorstep!

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Amfisound Guitars Raudus Bass

Prices starting from 2,520 € (EU-customers) & 2,032 € (outside the EU)

Hard case included.

Contact: Amfisound Guitars

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Pros:

+ Made in Finland

+ handmade 

+ workmanship

+ playability

+ sound

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