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Audio-Video Area - Progress, Performance & Feedback => Road Cases => Topic started by: Majik on September 02, 2020, 06:04:52 pm

Title: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 02, 2020, 06:04:52 pm
Despite having been on these forums for many years, I've never done a proper road case. That was remiss of me!

So here it is. I'm going to start with the guitars I don't have any more:

Old guitars

Yamaha F310 Acoustic
This is the only photo of this I could find.
(https://i.ebayimg.com/00/s/NzY4WDEwMjQ=/$T2eC16RHJHEFFl3E(QYgBSB7oQy8Jg~~48_79.jpg)

This was my first guitar.

I say "my first" as I actually shared a nylon-string acoustic with my elder brother when we were kids and, briefly, had a handful of classical lessons at primary school. I don't remember why I stopped, but the guitar got broken when my brother was pretending to be a rock star whilst listening to music, and smashed the headstock on the door frame.

I say "my", but it was actually my wife who bought it from Costco as, on an impulse she fancied learning to play. She gave up pretty much before she started. As the guitar was there I thought I should give it a go. I could actually remember some of the chords I had learned all those years ago at school. At that point I wasn't really taking it seriously and just messing with it occasionally. Piano was my first choice of instrument and, at that point, I was spending more time on that.

PRS SE Singlecut

This is the best photo I have of this:
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/x9xXYzEqHqR7xRq1I9ARkpmqxGD8QRAPZ4q1cUCQ4OrtREvRowaoGRvaIaexRpYJkFctI_8YcnRHgLOhhLolq1FQrGvo56T4xLOWipOMVLNvvmj-ommCRKm5ZU4LqWPfIWNNOeXzo2M=w2400)

This was my first electric guitar. My brother-in-law, David, was living with us at the time and he used to play electric guitar when he was younger. He had been talking about starting again and buying himself one for ages. When we became friends with someone at our children's school who was a professional rock guitar player, I think that fuelled his interest and he started saving up. When he went to buy it, I went with him to the guitar store. Whilst I was there, amongst the rows of electric guitars hanging on the walls, one stood out to me. I'm not sure why because it wasn't particularly flashy or brightly coloured, but it just appealed. David saw my interest and said "You should get that, it's a decent guitar". So, on a whim, I did. He is a Tele guy, so he bought a Fender Tele Lite Ash (more on that later) and also bought the Cube amp in the photo, and said I could use it.

It was after buying this that I started getting serious about learning the guitar, and I think it was around that sort of time I discovered Justin on Youtube.

I was travelling a lot within the UK with work at the time, and one of the things that appealed to me about the electric guitar was I could easily take it with me and practice in the hotel room without really disturbing anyone.

It was a great guitar and I used it loads, but a few years ago I decided to upgrade so I sold it.

Cadenza Electro-acoustic

This is the only photo I can find of this:
(https://i.ebayimg.com/00/s/NzY4WDEwMjQ=/$(KGrHqFHJE!FIBZTB-edBSB7uoMgpw~~48_79.jpg)

In 2010 I was on a work contract where I had to work in Kuala Lumpur for several months. I was staying in a nice apartment in Mid Valley. Whilst I was there I decided I needed something to do, so I went to a local music shop and bought this. It's a cheap copy of an Ovation with a bowl-style body and the odd sound holes. It wasn't the best guitar in the world but it did the job whilst I was out there, and I decided I would bring it home with me when I came back to the UK.

I had it for a few years, and then decided to sell it at the same time as the Yamaha F310 when I decided to upgrade to a better acoustic guitar.

Redwood Bass guitar
The only photo I have of this is with the neck off whilst I was fixing it:
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/s-CcDZt5DeB6_ueT07IE89j1tgqIj2bzUz4v4tk3OMYYYvqUNrifcioYXisHMnre8H_pq9pDoJp-8beNY7ZD1AJk19sPRWh8uCQPXlKAS5xOZKk1OG0SEoRrV-xReyiFGapVfFCjFZGWuDqbX0bP-l_pZZH5nzoFVgnxImNWmKc29Mj6ZCm-yg2kyLcYGZ8hWVi-ZSXf_JLrNr6YZVXtxD5SFx10TVDLVX-IKtUWaRuArVrNUPP3IqeV9nIdITx7aYf0Fxoow41fHxJHo8yBpepiiNFZmUlrgATXa4UG4dcvJ5tWJCZyBIBDrwgDcuc8pSoEsiBbmQbqPxh2mmDr_BnqGK5N4SmaiD6QufB-KozAtH-Fxxqr7BLeiobW0kkAsINakWV_kJFFZjp79T-mNYwm55aDrrtnJETpUMplSiwuH0JD3pu5d8neVsw1BK5IOdAi0SsEEL8sj6RpVTMesrvWO7MpmO2FcWucrfExEzpRowjeKNjMiLqpY9PKLT5zeI4Yy_RYhtNj35183alRFqbALaj4BuEjBaQzGQ4_LKyntxBDsLGEhxhSFGpHRZ5P-E49t29owgpSa-_lgQJChlaPNrrNA7XOJWZoORzfetNRcxG8B2ptq2mfHzbCZLjxWO972jNOKzYCtfWf-_02jMLCjzFNRTjLlRGovJn7KwpYtP8=w1087-h816-no)

A few years ago I fancied giving bass a go, but didn't want to spend a fortune on gear in case I decided it wasn't for me. So I went on Gumtree and found a cheap bass guitar for sale, costing £40. To be honest, it was a cheap model (I think they were only around £120 new) and it was in a real state when I bought it; all the metal parts were rusty, the strings were in a shocking state, the electrics were noisy, and it had been strung completely incorrectly. Also a couple of the frets had loads of wear, and the whole thing was a grimey mess. I bought it as, not only could I use it to learn, but also I saw it as a project to see if I could restore it.

I cleaned everything up, fixed what I could and, for a while, this was my main bass guitar.

Here's a video of me playing it (badly). Here I was taking part in a challenge on Scotts Bass Lessons.





Yamaha  TRXB204

When the Redwood finally died (the jack socket failed, and replacing it turned out to be tricky) I got a new one, so I nipped down to Andertons and bought the Yammy. I don't have a photo of it, but I do have some video of me playing it for another SBL challenge:





And, yes, it does look very similar to the Redwood. I didn't specifically set out to buy another black bass guitar, but it was the only colour they had in stock at the time.

I sold it to a friend last year when I got my latest bass (more on that in my next Road Case post).

Swing S100

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/ZmsXFw1FfAeXuseSIrOM8aYqp-bbkkQXe-KaDL0gxEVLXQNoBudY9WugWxMmss-nm0vifyAq-Yg9NnY_yJeZGYAU5Qs51J8a7aFvbOPP7EwDoEdBUixiC9oOydu-UE3_UXFTdGIt-X0=w2400)
I've already written about this, as it was the guitar I purchased for myself when in Singapore.

I gave it away to a local friend's daughter. Apparently she is loving it.

Honourable Mentions

For a while, we had a Yamaha Pacific 112V in the house (sorry no photo). This was my daughter's. We got it for her for her birthday because she said it was what she wanted, but she never really took to it in the end, and I think I played it more than she did. She has since grown up, got married and moved home and she has it at her new house, and is still talking about learning.

I also had a Harley Benton GS Mini (again, no photo) for a while. I bought that as I was going camping and wanted something to take with me that was relatively small and that I wouldn't worry about getting damaged or stolen. I recently (2 weeks ago) lent it to my daughter as she thought it might be better for her to start learning on than the Pacifica, as she is quite small. So far she's not done anything with it, so I suspect I may get it back again in a few months. It's a pretty decent little guitar for the price and I actually used it quite a bit.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: close2u on September 02, 2020, 07:48:37 pm
Good to see you up and running Keith. I do enjoy a bit of back story and history. :)
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: adi_mrok on September 02, 2020, 11:24:17 pm
What a great history to share, it was quite an interesting read for the evening, thanks for that Keith. Never tried playing bass in my past but I am tempted to try one day altough not anytime soon :) I always like how guitars are telling a story and are reminiscent of something that happened in our past, my old guitars are 1500 miles away in my hometown so I will try to follow your path and share some stories as well, even though they are not that much exciting to be fair :)

Sent from my SM-G973F using JustinGuitar Community mobile app (http://r.tapatalk.com/byo?rid=93296)

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 03, 2020, 06:28:33 am
Thanks for sharing Keith. I do love to read these stories and the snippets of playing. Looking forward to the next episode.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: batwoman on September 03, 2020, 06:45:02 am
What a treat to learn some more about you Keith and better yet to hear you playing bass. Is there no end to your talent? You tell a great tale. Thankyou for this.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 03, 2020, 10:30:54 am
Current Guitars

The next posts are the guitars I currently have in my possession. I'm going to put them as individual posts to keep the post size down, and so I can put more detail in.

Fender Tele Lite Ash

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/5xi1ClosS_AIB6aY3vPuf-M3kt5XtyI0iDLklSeFcBy2hp1gU1Ehf14OQf3BAAr5yjeiGLznzt24QwbL7tidARhcnGNoWQs3Pd54R5SqBgyIxlV30VwOS6Xdc7SkyIBrbcVdAylp314=w2400)

In my previous post I mentioned that I purchased my first electric guitar whilst out shopping with my Brother-in-law David who was looking for a new guitar, and that he had purchased a Fender Tele Lite Ash. Well, this is that guitar. He, basically, gave it to me!

The background is that he had been living with us for a couple of years at that point. Prior to that, he was working as an IT Manager for a small manufacturing company in the Midlands but was, effectively, unqualified even though he was pretty good with computers and computer networks. He had fallen in love with a Malaysian woman and wanted to go to Malaysia to live with her and, eventually, marry her, but there was no way that was going to happen with his employment history. My work was exceptionally busy at the time, so I offered him to come and work for me, and I would get him some training and experience in the more specialist IT/Telecoms stuff that I did, and maybe get him involved in a few contracts.

That all worked out, eventually. After a few years or sending him on training courses and getting him involved with a few contracts that would look good on his CV, I managed to land a gig with Telecom Malaysia in KL. After working there for a bit, I convinced them that they could use David (and that he would be cheap as they wouldn't have to pay accommodation expenses) and so he joined me out in KL. That lasted approximately another year with me managing to get back to the UK and work remotely, and with him living in KL with his girlfriend. Soon after that he managed to get himself a permanent job in KL and, from there, moved on to a better job. They got married a few years ago.

When he moved to KL permanently, he gave me his guitar and amp!

The guitar itself is beautiful, with amazing figuring in the maple fretboard.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/XMCCu7fR_MrVj0zhHWWFZmSur-RHqFw2VpP0p0n9BmNBwDxt78_fyDDg2yJcgGZnY3iJ3C03FLv7BccHFAEbBlAwNAh3a1Es2BxKzyEEiyNPjX2-thF3qxq_KLHl3qfZjXoslJ3T408=w2400)

The spec is also slightly unusual, as it uses Seymour Duncan pickups instead of the stock Fender ones:

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/RAjZRxV7vYr1U0Nbp48aD02v9H6feOTMleb6WKpCnwhExGvJ8Wy7_XXMIaZRvtdnAWXPKNUTftNKjhHkHy6LXQmbKClF8Ij6YAE1z9QRYDIdxJ8owhEW_zDkDPIrjttimX3X2FC8sjY=w2400)

The other weird thing abut it is that it doesn't seem to have a serial number. That would indicate it's a fake, right? Well, no, because I was with him when he bought it, from new, from a reputable guitar store (Dawsons in the UK) and, whilst he was living with us, it never left the house.

When I took it for a set up a few years ago, the guitar tech said it was odd too, but he felt it was either MIK or MIJ. And, no, there's no serial number on the heel of the neck, but there is some faded markings in the neck pocket that neither I nor the guitar tech could make sense of. It looks like a number but I've not managed to match it with anything on the Fender website:

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/i6pBu2enhMxZOiiOwcy_uYbfNG44W_WPCcvONNm4kfrvnnyfmggOoxnULzsVTCW2uoUpWyNACqVeqpS8udJCWq58nBoIALErAaMALFl9ybjUcGk2J_i5HlQV59CeZjye0b2gxlAe3xE=w2400)

TBH I didn't get on on with this guitar for the longest time; as beautiful as it is I never enjoyed playing it. I assumed it was just because I wasn't a Tele guy. I would have sold it but I never felt it truly belonged to me and, at some point in the future if and when David wanted to start playing again, I could give him his guitar back.

More recently, I've come to appreciate it more. I think that the problem I had playing it was largely because I wasn't used to maple fretboards as none of the other guitars I have had or played have had one. In particular, the lower three strings literally go invisible against the patterned maple from a playing position. These days, I can play more without looking at the fretboard so that's not such a prolem.

I think the turning point in my relationship with the Tele was when I was working in Tokyo earlier this year. I had already been in Tokyo for a few months at the end of 2019 and was craving something to do in the evenings. I had actually visited the local guitar shops considering buying a cheap Pacifica or similar to use in my apartment. When I came back home for Xmas, I decided it would be better to take a guitar back with me. I didn't want the hassle of transporting a separate hard case and so the only sensible option for  was the Tele as I could take the neck off and stick it in my suitcase along with a small toolkit and a packet of strings. So that's what I did which meant I got to use it in Tokyo a bit, as it was my only option.

Unfortunately, I didn't get to use it as much as I hoped: January and February were very busy months for me socially in Tokyo with several shinnenkais, leaving drinks, Birthdays, etc. Also my daughter and her husband came over to stay, followed by my wife and other daughter.

Of the guitars I own it's not my favourite, but I now appreciate it and enjoy playing it.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 03, 2020, 10:31:56 am
Good to see you up and running Keith. I do enjoy a bit of back story and history. :)

Thanks Richard. Hopefully you will enjoy the stories about my current guitars.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 03, 2020, 10:33:58 am
What a great history to share, it was quite an interesting read for the evening, thanks for that Keith. Never tried playing bass in my past but I am tempted to try one day altough not anytime soon :) I always like how guitars are telling a story and are reminiscent of something that happened in our past, my old guitars are 1500 miles away in my hometown so I will try to follow your path and share some stories as well, even though they are not that much exciting to be fair :)

Thank you very much Adi. Hopefully you are getting some guitar time despite being away from your main guitars. Oxford, I believe you said in another post? At least you are in a nice location (and not a million miles from me in Berkshire).

And I'm sure your stories are just as interesting as mine.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 03, 2020, 10:35:20 am
What a treat to learn some more about you Keith and better yet to hear you playing bass. Is there no end to your talent? You tell a great tale. Thankyou for this.

Thank you Maggie,

I'm not sure about "talent", but I do try. I really should get back to some bass practice now I'm back in the UK, as it's been a while and I'm quite rusty.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 03, 2020, 10:58:19 am
Love the stories, Keith, and at risk of getting personal, you have a wonderfully generous and giving nature ... it shines through in so many of the stories you share, as well as always being thorough and detailed in your contributions here.

Which reminds me ... any thoughts/movement on the lesson with Justin?
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 03, 2020, 11:04:44 am
Freshman Apollo 2 OCBK Acoustic

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/dqsGoeer2bTPcsZ9yM8lxkHfW4iZY8OauY0gIX0e5SH1a01KG_oRrOkzQkqxHa1H0LexOgLZpEj9fRanZwRHM56EcwPXbVKtxi1CVytbDto_66TyJb5G3XPqKdByZMR9bN49s1NIEqU=w2400)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/kytrmvlX3uYU2qwLMPOxqNvBrWJIjUpC3D1XfgWB5-OIuow5NMHtw5vUXLrff3Uudwf00vH9smGyTniG1mD8zlmm_fSDalLyqYl0N8w6txGxoiLTApbxF7hGFypftYZDJECFqgYc5h8=w2400)

This is a bit of a difficult guitar to photograph as the finish on it is such high gloss, and it just reflects everything, so I've included a few pictures to show it at different angles and with different detail.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/s1YVhXPaeTMMjYmAHhJi6DUYu5VWzup2psSsfx41jE4f603ZBfTH5V492uztoxYGZFhI2-vvaep3K6emago6NjnBLWkKCqMZ_SVwO9b6EBxoMoGQNz2Dvj5omsVbNF8qPLMYEchaT34=w2400)

It has gold hardware, Fishman electronics and quite ornate inlays around the binding and rose.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/11J0LIreVMsN23jovlf8FiFjg8AExZMmrHpUkZqtcHjXTXahivbGcFqBfNZwVcwbtinrslLr2GIYXqo3ghkxXSgou2g-F-UgHvb_g-eAZODQFdyaFvAwk5-9g-3bjmF2bIyLbdcdeqE=w2400)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/8R9ZpmJ4dkRv53g7SwjA_nDoovTKP7T-AwNHZcOyLvhvXMUIxO_mur4qFhqC8jSNmu37XgWZcEC6n6TttJMtz4U09pjtqUYennn_FUs9eTQCIdnqTeJLPrsQbQZlkj_KsBrByXZor40=w2400)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/lN3YwjRBtw-NY6FcEEUL3Od1dJ2sOnk7EnqMkD5idwc2iglowWjmlTJQcIudbsdXaUMA-MQX5prSlACoFkuw_FuhlUMg3XNppyocCKPUBBkM31V_dsSNjF_-yYLJqmtSZwZG_PUNMMw=w2400)

I bought this several years ago when I wanted to get an upgrade from the Yamaha and Credenza acoustic guitars I had. So I sold those and went shopping.

The local guitar shop had these Freshman Apollo guitars and, at the time, they were on Justin's recommended list. The shop was selling them at a heavy discount (unfortunately they were closing down). I took my daughter with me as she said she was interested. They had two colours in stock and I preferred the other one, but my daughter said she liked this one, so I went with it as I thought it might encourage her to use it (it didn't!).

Whilst I quite like playing this guitar, I'm not in love with it. It plays and sounds OK but is nothing special. I am not keen on how it looks. Frankly it's too "blingy" for my taste. I an actively considering selling it and upgrading to something not only better, but that I like the look of more.

I'm learning another finger style song and, if I can nail the tricky middle-section, I may post a video of me playing this soon.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 03, 2020, 11:06:46 am
Love the stories, Keith, and at risk of getting personal, you have a wonderfully generous and giving nature ... it shines through in so many of the stories you share, as well as always being thorough and detailed in your contributions here.

Which reminds me ... any thoughts/movement on the lesson with Justin?

That's very kind of you to say David.

I have emailed Justin to try to arrange the lesson now that I know I will be around in the UK for a bit. From Justin's newsletter it seems he's quite busy at the moment. I will update when things move forward with that.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 03, 2020, 01:06:58 pm
G&L Legacy Tribute

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/MODCLgdFi7jWsqYGPdbLlBcyOSgVnkRqNpUMdKPdeSbxTipPHA1Nqt_vbzAo-SAiblajzMfEsb0V3kq1QqZaq-pa1WYx2m1bjLPEp92rxXb5EL4c1L0wNZ308suQoDStZ6pBxXduJO4=w2400)

I bought this prior to a business trip to Mexico City several year ago. At that time I was having guitar lessons with a local teacher and had been starting to work through the RGT Rock Guitar grades. I was due to attend the grade 5 exam, but work got in the way and I had to go to Mexico for several weeks. My exam was on the day after I flew back.

There's no way I was going to get through the exam having not picked up a guitar in weeks (on top of being jetlagged) so I started looking for options online. Guitar shops in Mexico City seemed to have a poor selection and seemed expensive, so I started looking for a cheap guitar I could take with me.

Whilst looking, I happened across Richards Guitars (https://rguitars.co.uk/) website and was looking through the G&L range. They were out of my budget but, having seen the discussions on the forum, as well as some online reviews, I had fancied getting a G&L Strat-style guitar for a while, so I thought I would browse a bit just for future reference. I had my eye on a sunburst model.

Whillst on the website, Richard popped up in the embedded web chat and asked me if I was interested in the G&Ls, and said he would be prepared to do a special deal on the Candy Apple Red model. I wasn't keen. I like red Strats (very Hank Marvin) but I didn't like the look of the G&L with the red headstock.

He explained that he had one red one left in stock and was prepared to do a good price to sell it. He originally bought some of the red models along with various other finishes but, despite being a classic colour, the red ones had been slow to sell because noone liked the look of them in the photos (because of the red headstock). He said that the photos didn't do them justice and that they looked much better in person. If I was prepared to visit the shop and try it, he would give me a great price if I wanted it. So I jumped in the car and headed up there.

When I got to he shop (in beautiful Stratford-upon-Avon) he plugged the guitar into an amp, handed it to me, and left me to it for half an hour. Straight away all my concerns about how it looked evaporated. In person, the finish is a lot deeper red than it looks in photos, and is slightly metallic. It reminds me of the finish on a high-end sports car. I'm still not a huge fan of the coloured headstock regardless of colour (I don't think it quite suits Strat-style guitars) but it doesn't bother me at all.

He had set the guitar up well, and it played beautifully and sounded great too. Like most S-type guitars, it's a versatile thing with rich and creamy tones from the neck pickup, lots of bite in the neck, great rhythm tones in the middle, and some nice "quacky" sounds from the bridge/middle combo. As with most S-type guitars the combination of neck and middle pickups is the weakest of the available pickup combinations, but it's usable. At the price he was offering me, it was an easy decision.

So this traveled to Mexico with me and I used it, much to the amusement and entertainment of my business colleague, to practice and prepare for the guitar exam. My colleague had managed to book an amazing simplex apartment in the Polanco area of Mexico City near many good restaurants and bars.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/2fl1lDyVYLajHWYbHs5V-P654TEGFtjxmzCQMj-VwdEYm6MR5RfxSqeq1LWTrObwcMbilZUT3o-xP-F9_fZKANXkosfqmFecIw5hmkAGdfO7CnRn3YvtWyxq18aQpRHvbfuegMKYUl8=w2400)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/T6ZP-3kppthSL2du17x0jSmb50dl6YPedUESKm-daUuXZfnE7hd9b3MRXJCg_9Vp7FQT53ZPOo8ibCzWPaPkEAwOb-Da-TMgHkqPdF3ih63mRg1Nc3vuqs-Whzt5QFLPr2GNPesq6LE=w2400)

 I had taken a recently-purchased Line 6 Amplifi TT with me as it seemed to be ideal for the situation. We plugged it into the apartment hifi and I used it as an amplifier practicing along to backing tracks streamed through Bluetooth, and we also used it to stream music (when the Bluetooth worked).

And when I got back to the UK, despite being heavily jet-lagged, I managed to get a pass on the grading.

I sometimes wonder if I should consider upgrading it to a better model as it is from the cheaper G&L line (made in Indonesia) but then I think "why?". It's a decent guitar and I enjoy playing it. Maybe I will come across an S-type guitar in the future which I fall in love with, and end up trading up but, for now, it's staying put.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Alex6strings on September 03, 2020, 01:53:47 pm
Holly cow you get around Keith, that's a globe trotting road case so far and I get the feeling  there's more to come.   Thanks for the very interesting insight.  Your guitars are an interesting bunch all with there own stories of events which brought them to you, that's so interesting to read.   
.
You reminded me that I've had a pacifica and it was really good.   Your Tele is a fine looking instrument.   Gasing out a bit now after moving on some electrics recently.   I had a butterscotch Tele.. :-[   I miss it.  I never played it, but i miss it.    Look forward to the next update!
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 03, 2020, 02:10:24 pm
That's very kind of you to say David.

I have emailed Justin to try to arrange the lesson now that I know I will be around in the UK for a bit. From Justin's newsletter it seems he's quite busy at the moment. I will update when things move forward with that.

Cheers,

Keith

 :) I forget when I spoke with Justin to set up mine as to the window when it was suitable for him. I think he had some workshops scheduled in September

I'm with you on the Freshman and it's look ... that high gloss finish wouldn't appeal to me. Personally I love the look of a sunburst finish.

You sure have got around the world ... like my brother, before he got married and then retired (early) to a village in the north east of Brazil to live an artist's life.

Kind of curious to see the different guitars to come. Appreciating the way you are telling the story of each one.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 03, 2020, 10:46:57 pm
Holly cow you get around Keith, that's a globe trotting road case so far and I get the feeling  there's more to come.

Sorry to disappoint, Alex, but I think that's all of the globetrotting guitar-related stores I have.

I do still have a couple of guitars to describe, but their stories aren't as interesting. Maybe I should have done these first, but I was trying to cover them in the order they came into my possession.

But thank you for your interest.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: LievenDV on September 03, 2020, 11:00:47 pm
Love that red on that Strat and as a beginner bass player, I enjoyed those bass vids a lot!
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Alex6strings on September 04, 2020, 12:43:29 am
Sorry to disappoint, Alex, but I think that's all of the globetrotting guitar-related stores I have.

I do still have a couple of guitars to describe, but their stories aren't as interesting. Maybe I should have done these first, but I was trying to cover them in the order they came into my possession.

But thank you for your interest.

Cheers,

Keith
Definitely not disappointed Keith. Reading of your travels and the guitars that have come and gone is fascinating.   My road case would be a little boring I think.  I tend to just keep buying slightly different versions of the same guitar! 

Sent from my CPH1920 using JustinGuitar Community mobile app (http://r.tapatalk.com/byo?rid=93296)

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 04, 2020, 11:53:40 am
PRS S2 Singlecut

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/N0jhIJmB_S2ukw-f7yh1o-EiBIb681N27FXvmQwAPRZKCm3KG246wvy-FlO_q55Wnn2oI2e4MQYCVbhOOnGh4irgAUeJxOXwleVLxXwKQiJk8aDfG15x9JI2LQyxPMdoT27yRkz0iUI=w2400)

There's not too much of a story behind this guitar. I bought it a few years ago to replace my original PRS CE model.

I liked the CE a lot, but the intonation wasn't quite right on the high E string, which was starting to annoy me. I guess it must be familiarity with guitars because I had played it for years without noticing. I took it to a luthier who basically said that the problem was the bridge. These guitars have a fixed, compensated bridge and when it works it works well, but if they are off then there's little room for adjustment. He suggested the fix would be a new bridge with individually adjustable saddles. The problem was not big enough to worry about so I left it, but a year later and it was starting to bug me, probably more psychologically than anything else.

I had seen the PRS S2 models advertised on Andertons YT channel, and saw they were doing a special end-of-line price, so I decided to get one. I sold mine on Gumtree to a guy who was just starting out he actually brought his guitar teacher over to check it out.

When I called Andertons the next day, I found they had sold out, literally that morning. Bummer!

So I scoured the Internet and found someone else who had them in stock. In fact, they were slightly cheaper. They had a decent returns policy so I bought it mail order.

The guitar itself is lovely. However, the "satin" finish is very thin and quite easily damaged. I was slightly annoyed at first, but then I realised a bit of wear gives it some character. In the photo yo can see a few places where it's starting to get some wear.

The guitar has two humbuckers, both of which can be tapped to give a "single coil" sound. Like most coil tapped humbuckers, it's not particularly convincing, but it is a different tone to play with. The guitar actually has quite a dark sound and can be quite muddy, but it's great for growling rock sounds and thick, creamy solos.

It has locking tuners, which are great.

I think this is my favourite guitar, and it's the only humbucker-equipped guitar in my collection. It doesn't suit every song but, whenever I use it, it feels comfortable and familiar.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 04, 2020, 04:36:50 pm
That PRS sure is a beautiful looking instrument, Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 04, 2020, 06:42:37 pm
Gibson SG P90

(I'm not sure exactly what model this is, but I think it's a SG Special '60s Tribute).

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/6FwGzN6hinmmhRfji_lQpFYPylEBOvO6K37ZSEBMWW6GQsNQszPGWlYeXyo5k6hNqC9KiyOVsE-22YHqTmCwITCTcaEiYt5joui_QOlC5dm0rUsX7nJYtNTKX7859Kddkw4AtG3_vsE=w2400)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/Zk2S18J5eGPwsJoPw6MFlQbI7ZmcP2LwyM3tQ-ujhHothfmL8te2okmCOkbVcwTvXqzwTuJC8wor_1vEW-O8QUq7qIt_yzGb816qJKoGOetfGNwOM7FwI3QX3dSWQndD7g1-KnyGJrI=w2400)

I got this as part of a bunch of equipment a friend, Anita, was selling. I actually got to know Anita through Scott's Bass Lessons. She was selling a bunch of both Bass and Guitar gear that she had accumulated over the years as she wanted to clear the space to make an art studio. She contacted me through a message on the SBL forums:

Quote
Hi Keith,

Thought I'd message you on the off-chance that you were interested in some guitar gear, as I'm wanting to get rid of it and I'd like to see it go to a good home. You still play guitar, right?
...
She then listed a whole bunch of kit.
Quote
I would rather have the stuff collected as I don't drive and it's pretty delicate/heavy to ship...

Yeah... I suffered from a lot of GAS when I was younger!

My initial response was:
Quote
Yes I'm still playing guitar although, really, with 3 electric guitars and 2 acoustics, plus a bunch of amps and modelling interfaces, I've probably got enough stuff. Do you have any view on what you want for them, either individually or as a package, as I can ask around.

She then messaged me prices and said:
Quote
For actually selling stuff, in particular I'm looking to move the Gibson SG Special P90s 2011 and the Laney TI15 amp. All fantastic condition, the amp was bought new in 2013 I think and barely used, the guitar was bought used but no wear.
...
Oh.. and I'm also looking to move a bass guitar and amp, so if you do happen to have any interest in those, let me know. I'll do an insane deal for a friend :)

I know, I know, lol. I have way too much stuff.
The bass and the amp piqued my interest (more on that later).

After a few messages back and forward, I was actually considering some of the guitar stuff as well. After all, I had to make a 3-4 hour round trip to pick it up, and the price she was selling it for was pretty good. Anything I didn't want she said I could sell on if I wanted.

I replied:
Quote
That is really, *really* tempting, damn you!
I drove over the following week, had lunch with her and loaded up the car. The deal I did with her included a cheap Takamine acoustic, which I gave to a friend who taught music at the local SEN school, some drive pedals, and a cahon.

I'll cover the bass gear in future posts.

Apparently the story behind the SG (if I have it correct) is that she was travelling through Europe with her boyfriend when she saw the SG online for sale second-hand in Belgium, so they did a detour and she bought it.

Being a Black Sabbath fan, she had originally changed the pick-guard out for a completely black one, but she had kept the original laminated one with the white layers so I reinstalled that, as I preferred it.

I was originally thinking I might sell this. I had never played an SG and, although at one point, had toyed with the idea of getting a cheap Epiphone SG, I had always suspected that it wouldn't be my thing.

It turns out I was wrong. It's a lovely little thing, and the P90s have a tonal character distinct from all my other guitars. I don't use it that much at the moment, but I enjoy it when I do, and it's really nice to play. one odd thing I find is that, when I first pick it up, I sometimes get slightly lost as I expect the 12th fret to be closer to the body than it is. It's not dramatically smaller than my other guitars, but it feels a lot smaller for some reason. It's a 2011 model with a matte black finish that I'm pretty sure is nitro.

I'll cover some of the other gear I got in later posts.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: close2u on September 04, 2020, 08:30:33 pm
That Ash Tele.

Mmhh


That PRS.

Mmhh


That SG.

Mmhh

That G&L Legacy.

Mmhh

 :) :) :) :)
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: batwoman on September 05, 2020, 06:11:28 am
So many bright, shiny toys, entertaining tales, deals done. Thanks Keith.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 05, 2020, 02:38:14 pm
And another fabulous looking instrument, Keith, and a story about how things flow.

And more to come

I think it will be fitting to cap this with a final shot of the whole family  ;D
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: phx1973 on September 05, 2020, 07:51:23 pm
What a fantastic collection, Majik. I particularly like the P90 SG. I don’t always love black guitars but that one is just sweet. I love my Les Paul Jr with P90 but do sometimes wish I had that neck pick up (https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20200905/7d96c69d3ae8cdffae89af7c3cfca3b9.jpg)


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Spike_tm on September 06, 2020, 10:22:53 am
Just subscribed to this topic, wel written and fun to read. Nice collection of guitars.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 06, 2020, 12:40:38 pm
Thanks to everyone for reading.

@close2u Yes, I'm very happy with my current collection of electric guitars. It's only really the acoustic I'm not so keen on.

@batwoman Thank you for reading.

I think it will be fitting to cap this with a final shot of the whole family  ;D

I will try to do that.

What a fantastic collection, Majik. I particularly like the P90 SG. I don’t always love black guitars but that one is just sweet. I love my Les Paul Jr with P90 but do sometimes wish I had that neck pick up.

That's a nice looking LPJ. Is that a satin finish?

@Spike_tm Thank you for reading. I'm runing out of gear to describe and stories to tell, but I'm glad you enjoyed my posts.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Spike_tm on September 06, 2020, 01:05:28 pm
While there is a "my first guitar" there is no such thing as "my last guitar. Only" my latest guitar".
I am sure there will be more guitar related adventures to come, with your current or with future gear.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 07, 2020, 06:00:00 pm
Sterling by Music Man SUB Ray 4 Bass

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/yzxJrzF-5DiQrDj28k3ZDZlhk8Zz27-_M46kRF40flwgxxhf2xGWr2HAFEqIiKnu3jlkyVNJjbcUp-R3lckdrSFHzQwjvzx3AlF-54uzOF6uCw07J-tT-jdg8DZfdZMO-n1O7u0w49I=w2400)

This is part of the package of kit I purchased from my friend Anita. And it really was the hook which got me interested in it in the first place. It's it's a cheaper version of the Music Man Stingray which is used by many renowned bass players.

So why did I get it?

I have previously described the cheap, second-hand Redwood bass I got as a project, and the Yamaha bass I replaced it with in a earlier post. They were both great basses for me, but I felt something was missing with the Yammy.

Thinking about it, the Redwood was junk when I got it and, although I transformed it into a playable instrument with a bit of TLC, it was always a bit compromised. But I had it at a time when I was making by first steps into bass playing, and so having an great instrument didn't really matter, and it wasn't so bad that it put me off. In fact really the only major thing wrong with it was the action was a bit high, and I actually shimmed the neck to mostly fix that.

But what it had was character. The body had chips and scratches and the frets were quite worn in places (I think the original owner must have obsessively played a single riff), and the knobs were slightly flaky. It was sometimes a little bit of a struggle to play but, as I said, not enough to put me off. In fact I think I liked that about it. And the fact that I had rescued it and restored it also, maybe, gave it a special place in my heart.

When I replaced it with the Yamaha, I got a much better bass, that sounded better, played better, that the knobs worked reliably on, and that didn't have nicks and little patches on the chrome where once there had been rust.

But it also felt a bit characterless to me. I think the problem was it was too similar to what I had before and I think in my mind I had envisaged upgrading to something else. Maybe if they had stock in a different colour than black, I might have gelled with it more. In retrospect, I didn't enjoy the black.

When Anita told me she was selling her bass and sent pictures, I was really interested. It was a step up, quality wise, from the Yamaha I had and it looked great. It seemed to have the character I was looking for. It is a simpler guitar, having only one humbucker, and I think that was part of the appeal: where I am now with my bass learning, I actually like having simpler controls. The Yammy was very flexible, but I never knew what to do with the controls so I generally left them set to one setting. The Sub Ray has limited options, but they fell "right".

When I went to pick it up, I knew it was the right choice. It looks great, plays great, and has character in spades. And it also has a fair bit of tonal variety if I ever want to explore it, but with only one humbucker and a couple of tone controls, I'm not going to be overwhelmed with options. And I love the look of the headstock with the chunky open tuners.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/LCJk7P4QCbD7aoodD-V9iYdj2U97XlvwczaZ37ngeu0hVxCGKNbo0r7jNVYewqcPFdQuChX6Vxx-k1TTWOc1HxAmYmcKbxFHJcG4OHpUdYuEX7yf8NukYlke6EVh1IdICPuUGJxEb20=w2400)

I'm not really into chasing tones, especially on the bass, but I do like how this bass sounds: it has a it of a "bark" to it that seems to suit rock music. It has a satin finish neck which feels great, and a bit of a retro, kitschy style.

Shortly after getting the SUB Ray, I was wondering what to do with the Yamaha, when a local friend phoned me. His teenage son had been learning bass at school, and he wanted to get him one for his birthday and wanted advice. He had been considering getting him a Yamaha as that is what his son was using at school. How serendipitous! So I sold the Yammy to him and, basically, threw in the cheap bass amp I had for free. His son loves it!

So that is my last guitar from my current collection. I may may some more posts covering the amps and some other kit I have.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: phx1973 on September 07, 2020, 07:42:26 pm
Hi Keith,

No, it's a gloss finish. I think they call it a nitro gloss (solid mahogany body). But yes, I love the looks of it, and it plays great.



That's a nice looking LPJ. Is that a satin finish?

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 08, 2020, 12:05:21 am
I think it will be fitting to cap this with a final shot of the whole family  ;D

As requested, a "family shot" of the electrics:

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/Md5K8syjzDkDdhoHnW0cHEMBpyq28HtbnpLpXbOFyZbA9WIaBlJPD4ml2De3TNXTKTVM1qu3DDg8IG0acQz5sDTrAdhwtfLhQFcayTXfuoEI7aw3oJeE6lubqRwpaMwXuYK1sl3LjfY=w2400)

And one including the acoustic, although I suspect she may be leaving soon:

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/995XOqVympgTZpbzCMlEQ6DS6w53K5r82YJg5M3E9vRGegzYgj40dMjsL7epu9QxJ5iEbkszDYwrnR6-KvnNOcSNwwRkv7yWLfkXHzt51qOt30O2hMgXoJ_DXmwqrQHmjDazpv8RO7c=w2400)

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: glpguitar on September 08, 2020, 02:00:41 am
Amazing stories, great photos, happy family ending :)!
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 08, 2020, 07:48:11 am
The bass does have a good look, Keith.

Thanks for the picture of all together. You have a fine collection of solid-body electrics there. Enjoy the variety in looks.

Guess now we can look forward to more on the gear plus that teaser about the acoustic  ;)
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: GregB on September 08, 2020, 11:34:59 am
I was thinking those guitars are massive until I realised the violet wasn’t carpet 😂
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 09, 2020, 06:30:42 pm
@glpguitar
@DavidP
@GregB

Thanks for reading and commenting, even if it is to say my wallpaper looks like carpet  :D

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 09, 2020, 07:23:27 pm
Amps I used to own

Line 6 Amplifi TT

(https://i.ebayimg.com/00/s/NzY4WDEwMjQ=/z/uYoAAOSwt0FZB3V0/$_79.jpg)

I had been interested in the Line 6 Amplifi range as a possible practice amp. I was interested in the online tone library and how you could match that to songs, and how you could stream Bluetooth audio to it; at the time it was one of the earliest Bluetooth-enabled guitar practice amps.

So when I knew I was going to Mexico for several weeks, I thought this would be the ideal thing to take with me: it was small enough to pop into a suitcase, would plug into the hifi in the apartment, and supported bluetooth streaming for the backing tracks I was learning as well as general streaming for pleasure.

It did the job... kind of... the guitar side worked OK but the BT streaming was flakier than a Greggs sausage roll. Even if I put my phone directly on top of the unit I would frequently get interruptions. A lot of the time I ended up using the BR-80  had also brought with me on headphones.

I assumed it might have been local interference, but when I brought it home I tried using it there and it was just as bad (other bluetooth streaming works fine).

At home I plugged the TT into the amp/speakers on an old Clavinova we have. I had used that for other amp modelling systems, which had sounded pretty good with it.

It sounded OK, but not really that great, especially with higher gain sounds. The app allowed you a lot of flexibility in tweaking the tone by adding effects and different amp models, messing with the parameters, changing the order of effects and so on, but I really wasn't that impressed with the sound. Also a lot of the cloud based tones were downright dreadful, and the factory supplied ones were typically OTT. And I found the app a faff to use (partly because of the flaky BT connectivity).

I just felt it was a great idea, but poorly executed. I ended up not using it and part exchanging it a few years later with a bunch of other kit.

Laney Tommy Iommi TI15-112 tube amp

(https://i.ebayimg.com/00/s/NzY4WDEwMjQ=/z/XRAAAOSwUPxdJz0d/$_79.jpg)

I got this as part of the bundle of stuff I purchased from Anita. I was quite keen to try it out as, although I already had a valve (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-P4sDnNOMZI) amp, I thought another which was voiced differently might be useful. However, I was also wondering if I really would use it but, as Anita was happy to me to re-home anything I didn't use, I decided to give it a try.

It was a great little (actually, not so little) amp if you like hard rock or metal. It's quite dark sounding and has no clean at all: even if you turn the gain all the way down you got quite a heavy, snarling crunch tone. On top of that it also had an onboard boost which could be foot-switch activated. Basically, it was high-gain, or higher-gain. For the right sort of song, it sounded great. It was also very loud even in 1W mode.

I lived with it for about a year before I decided that it really wasn't for me. I was making an effort to use it when I could but it really was limited in what I could use it for as I really don't play that much high-gain stuff, and the lack of anything resembling a clean or even a crunch tone made it useless for 90% of the stuff I was playing. And I worked out that if I needed that I could stick a distortion pedal/setting on one of my other amps. It was also taking up a fair bit of space as I didn't have anywhere useful to put it. So I sold this on Gumtree. They guy I sold it to was very keen and, I got the impression, was a Black Sabbath fan, so I imagine he is enjoying it.

Some other stuff I used to have

Digitech RP250

(https://i.ebayimg.com/00/s/NzY4WDEwMjQ=/$(KGrHqJ,!qYFHl61W2zjBSB-qzSk2w~~48_79.jpg)

I got this for a Birthday present a year or so after I got my first electric guitar. It was the first proper modelling system I used. I loved this little thing and I used it all the time, either plugged into an amp, or into the Clavinova amp/speakers or, mainly, with headphones. It had a tuner, and drum machine, which was much more fun than a metronome, and several of the stock patches were pretty good. I got quite good at dialing in effects and tones using the PC based application as well as the knobs and buttons on the front of the unit itself. I actually thought the user-interface was quite good. As for most of these systems, the stock patches are mostly awful, but if you spend some time learning to use it, there's some great tones to be had.

I eventually replaced this with a RP355, as I wanted the extra foot-switch and the looper.

Boss GT-3

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/91MmxbNOanL._AC_SL1500_.jpg)

This was a beast of a floorboad multi-fx unit that my Brother-in-law bought off eBay when he lived with me, and then hardly used. When he left for Malaysia he sad I could keep it.

It was actually very good quality multi-fx system and, like a lot of Boss stuff, built like a tank. Some of the tones from it were really good, but the user interface was really difficult to use. I used to drag it out and have a play every now and then, but I never really used it that much. It didn't really have any sort of sentimental value so I didn't mind getting rid of it. I eventually traded it in along with the Amplifi and my old RP250.

Cheers,

Keith

EDIT: Found a couple of pics
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 09, 2020, 07:37:04 pm
Current Amps

Roland Cube 20X

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/OVE9dsfFCZMP18atumtKT_Hz1Pih9BX7dSAvc52df7EEKVE1cXiw0iMFY2p0mJEvRu01uCP8u3KsPCX6PmeYx5_J0m7va-cr-BgM3dhuPcBEZMQ5ujEdpRfPmMOTonwb9_2TEsI-TqM=w2400)

My Brother-in-law bought this at the same time as he purchased the Tele, and said I was welcome to use it. Like his other guitar gear, he said I could keep it when he moved to Malaysia.

For quite a while I was very unimpressed with this thing. I could never get a good sound from it on any of the gain settings. It wasn't until a few years later it was that i realized that was my beginner playing at fault and, after I had learned to play better, I could make it sound pretty good. Having said that, the gain settings aren't amazing and, because it's quite a small unit, it has quite a "boxy" sound. But it goes plenty loud for a practice amp, and it's built to withstand the apocalypse!

I keep thinking I should sell this as I hardly use it any more. But it's really a nice little amp and it's not really taking any any space at the moment. I actually love the "JC Clean" setting on it. I mainly have used it for summer weekend or evening noodles whilst sitting in the conservatory (I really should do more of that). It's also been really useful for local events: I lent it to the guitar player in the live band we had supporting our local village Panto (https://g.co/kgs/y7skpc) production a few years ago, and it easily kept up with the rest of the band.

Now I have the Yahama THR10II I may consider selling it on, but I'm in no hurry.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 09, 2020, 09:45:04 pm
Tascam MP-GT1 Guitar Trainer

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/cnDZd4RriekX5ArZqFhXpkdwCWlcrN5zkCaSweO7GT5LX_ltQP-Liv7GMVgx-7jRXN_RbwI0YFa8JW6hJldqTeWY8YSnPuIeUWMUY_0DkyU4KvhV0hvE7V5HA68kvZ7DiydBuZpMMZk=w2400)

A special shout-out for this little thing. I've not used it in years and I tried to sell it a few years ago and noone was interested, so it got thrown into a drawer and forgotten about. Frankly, it's mostly obsolete. But for a few years this was my go-to guitar teaching tool.

It's about the size of an old-school tape Walkman (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walkmanl) (I'm struggling to think of anything modern that is that size and shape). It had a simple LCD display, a belt clip, a rechargeable  battery, and an on-board memory that you accessed by connecting it via USB to a computer (which would also recharge the battery).

Basically, it was an MP3 player and phrase trainer. You loaded MP3s into it and could play them. But you could also slow them down, pitch shift them, and do A-B section looping. It also had a tuner and a metronome. It had about 1Gb of memory for songs which was enough for more than a hundred or songs or backing tracks.

What is more is you could plug your electric guitar into it and it had onboard amp emulation with some effects including overdrives, distortions, modulations, etc. The amp emulation and effects weren't fantastic, but they were good enough.

I spent many a happy hour wandering around our conservatory with headphones and my PRS plugged into this little thing trying to learn songs or licks.

It will probably end up in the recycling centre one of these days but, for now, it will stay in my drawer with some fond memories.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: adi_mrok on September 09, 2020, 11:38:45 pm
Oh my God RP250 was a first multi fx tool someone has shown to me and I was so jealous that my colleague had it and I couldn't afford it (still in my early teens and it was crazy expensive in my homecountry). But each time he let me use it I was so happy having a chance to use it. Those were the times:)

Sent from my SM-G973F using JustinGuitar Community mobile app (http://r.tapatalk.com/byo?rid=93296)

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 10, 2020, 12:06:19 am
They were definitely well regarded in their day, and they were surprisingly powerful.

The guitar teacher I had at the time was doing student concerts where you got to perform a song you had learned with his band to an audience of student friends and family. I performed a song at one of them. I had transcribed the guitar solo for Tom Waits Downtown Train and performed it with his band at the concert. I had tweaked the RP250 to get a tone very similar to that on the record.

In the break afterwards, a couple of the other students came over to congratulate me and one of them commented on my tone saying how good it was, and asked how did I achieve it? He said he would love to get a tone like that, but all he had was a "crappy" Digitech RP250. I told him to go and look on the stage. He was amazed to see my RP250 there.

The difference is I spent time learning how to use it and how to create my own patches. I even tweaked the patch at rehearsals to make it work better with the teacher's Marshall amp that we were using. He was relying totally on the factory patches.

I think it's the same with a.lot of these modelling tools: they get a bad name because the factory patches are mostly bad (they are mostly for demo IMO) and few people spend time to learn them properly.

Cheers,

Keith

Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: adi_mrok on September 10, 2020, 12:10:52 am
Absolutely it was a very powerful tool my mate was actually pretty good with getting the right sound off of it. Playing to the audience sounds scary but what a fantastic opportunity given by a teacher, enjoyment after the show must have been over the top :)

Sent from my SM-G973F using JustinGuitar Community mobile app (http://r.tapatalk.com/byo?rid=93296)

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 10, 2020, 12:12:26 am
Relief, certainly. I appreciated the opportunity, but the few times I did it I was a nervous wreck.

Cheers,

Keith

Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: batwoman on September 10, 2020, 01:44:13 am
In the break afterwards, a couple of the other students came over to congratulate me and one of them commented on my tone saying how good it was, and asked how did I achieve it? He said he would love to get a tone like that, but all he had was a "crappy" Digitech RP250. I told him to go and look on the stage. He was amazed to see my RP250 there.

The difference is I spent time learning how to use it and how to create my own patches. I even tweaked the patch at rehearsals to make it work better with the teacher's Marshall amp that we were using. He was relying totally on the factory patches.

I've been following this head spinning thread, most of it whirling round over the top of my dizzy head. You are one impressive dude Mr Keith Majik - well named.

This post has sent my admiration even higher.

You da man.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 10, 2020, 08:56:41 am
That's very nice of you to say, Maggie. Sorry if I have baffled you in some way on this thread. If there's anything I need to explain better, please let me know. I am aware I can sometimes be over-technical.

I enjoy technology and have worked with it for most of my life, but I'm still learning. My explorations with technology in the field of music are no different. I have learned a lot over the last several years. Mostly this is not the technology itself, which is generally relatively straightforward for me, but about how it is used and how different people interact with it. That includes myself: things that work for me may not work for others, and vice versa.

The nickname, by the way, is one I got in the Engineering Dept. at a Telecoms startup I was working at in the mid 1990s. Back then we were using IRC (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_Relay_Chat) for intra-company chat and I started using "Majik" as my name (or "nick") on that because other variations had already been taken, and it kind of stuck.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 10, 2020, 09:33:09 am
Marshall MS-2

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/ogo45oOtra4r_ccL6G82w8UtUnqeqzdMBpBIsykOvYebTMePTCXnortwEGlgb7jMsSnBevFZD68yS9OJVHU9PTto4NIGnOvyxkRCT5EiC1nMN8BFpQR8z10YRfMFeieFYV_jNRuU_Zg=w2400)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/vvxxbkCCSFFk7DuOguxXrrJRk7cv1424i0tRE4XoMhLyA4CL54nuGARnNKBZYG5ZbPEDkE4H3VabfrFL-qsZGFA0K1YExBVV4JuKWFw6jYZ8Zpr7lfytLEH8NRghIzQ18EFhXO6f1OY=w2400)

We picked this up from the guitar shop for fun when I went with my Brother-in-law to buy his Fender Tele. We had low expectations of it, and they were met. It really is a toy and pretty useless other than as a portable headphone unit (and I think there are better options for that, like my Tascam unit above).

Frankly, I use it as an ornament.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 10, 2020, 12:14:03 pm
The good read rolls on, Keith.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: jono on September 10, 2020, 12:18:44 pm
Thanks for sharing that, I have often been tempted to try it but won't now.

Sent from my SM-A505FN using JustinGuitar Community mobile app (http://r.tapatalk.com/byo?rid=93296)

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 10, 2020, 12:29:42 pm
Thanks for sharing that, I have often been tempted to try it but won't now.

Hi jono,
Thanks for reading my Road Case. I'm sorry, but I'm not sure what you are referring to.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: jono on September 10, 2020, 08:51:45 pm
Hi Keith
I was referring to the mini Marshall. I wanted a small speaker for when I got called in to work out of hours.

Sent from my SM-A505FN using JustinGuitar Community mobile app (http://r.tapatalk.com/byo?rid=93296)

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 10, 2020, 09:17:51 pm
Ah, I see. Bear in mind they are dirt cheap. But you might be better off spending more and getting something better.

The Zoom G1x Four springs to mind, to use with headphones.

Cheers,

Keith



Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: batwoman on September 11, 2020, 01:56:39 am
That's very nice of you to say, Maggie. Sorry if I have baffled you in some way on this thread. If there's anything I need to explain better, please let me know. I am aware I can sometimes be over-technical.

I enjoy technology and have worked with it for most of my life, but I'm still learning. My explorations with technology in the field of music are no different. I have learned a lot over the last several years. Mostly this is not the technology itself, which is generally relatively straightforward for me, but about how it is used and how different people interact with it. That includes myself: things that work for me may not work for others, and vice versa.

The nickname, by the way, is one I got in the Engineering Dept. at a Telecoms startup I was working at in the mid 1990s. Back then we were using IRC (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_Relay_Chat) for intra-company chat and I started using "Majik" as my name (or "nick") on that because other variations had already been taken, and it kind of stuck.

Cheers,

Keith

You tell such a good story Keith. Your know how is clearly the result of many years of learning and application. I don't have enough years left or to be honest, the interest, to grasp more than enough to enable me to record stuff and improve it a bit. I do enjoy following along in this merry romp.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: pkboo3 on September 12, 2020, 09:49:32 pm
Interesting read, Keith!  The Red G&L in your second photo of it does look darker than the first. It really is pretty & seems you are attached to it for now. The PRS is unique-looking at least to me.

Takamine acoustic - Ooh! That caught my attention. That’s what I have.

Do you have a current favorite guitar, or is it according to the song you are playing? 

Anyway, interesting read.

Pam



Sent from my iPhone using JustinGuitar.com Forum
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 13, 2020, 12:47:31 am
Your know how is clearly the result of many years of learning and application.

A few decades, actually. I started messing around with technology in my early teens, and haven't really ever stopped. I've always enjoyed it, even though many things about the industry itself frustrate and annoy me.

Quote
I don't have enough years left or to be honest, the interest, to grasp more than enough to enable me to record stuff and improve it a bit. I do enjoy following along in this merry romp.

One good thing is that much of the technology to do certain things is now accessible to everyday people and at a reasonable price. That includes the tools to support making, recording, mixing and distributing music.

For instance, I've recently started using Harrison Mixbus DAW. For under $100 you get something with similar capability to a renowned full-sized professional mixing console costing many tens of thousands of dollars.

Of course that doesn't mean you don't need any skills to use it properly: all DAWs have some necessary complexity and some fundamental knowledge of how to do tracking, gain staging, and to use tools like compression and EQ are needed. And that's before we consider plugins.

But even there those skills are attainable by anyone with the curiosity and patience to study them. It takes time and effort, but it's mostly not rocket-science. And tools like Audacity, Ardour, Mixbus, Reaper, and Garageband do their best to make things easier, and there's also written and video tutorials. The nice thing is you can dip in as much as you want or need to.

For most of us this is a hobby and so we only need to take it as far as our interest and enjoyment dictates; if you are happy recording clips on your phone and doing basic editing in Audacity, so be it. It's possible to get some great results with simple equipment, as Brian has demonstrated. And for those that want to progress past this, there's affordable tools, information, and advice available. What a time to be alive!

So thank you for following along Maggie, and I'm glad you are enjoying reading it as much as I am writing it. It's actually something I should have done ages ago as it's helped to reconnect me with some old tools as well as old memories. It's also made me re-evaluate what tools have available to me and how I use them.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 13, 2020, 12:58:32 am
Interesting read, Keith!  The Red G&L in your second photo of it does look darker than the first. It really is pretty & seems you are attached to it for now. The PRS is unique-looking at least to me.
Hi Pam,

Yes, I really like how the G&L looks and it plays great and sounds good too.

One thing I like about the PRS is how understated it is. A lot of PRS models are quite eye-catching with heavily patterned and brightly coloured finishes. I really don't like those very much.

I have realized, whilst typing this, that 3 of my 5 electric guitars have a wooden or wooden effect finish, and the SG, despite being black, also shows the wood grain because the finish is so thin.

Quote
Takamine acoustic - Ooh! That caught my attention. That’s what I have.

It was a nice enough guitar, but really at the bottom end of their range and not as good as the Freshman I had, so there was no point in me keeping it. The school has made better use of it that I ever would.

Quote
Do you have a current favorite guitar, or is it according to the song you are playing?

It largely depends on my mood and the song. For instance, I recently set up an amp I really hadn't used much and plugged it into the Fender Tele which, again, I haven't used much considering how long it's been in the house, and straight away got a really nice "spanky" tone from it which put a huge smile on my face. That's something I may have to investigate a bit more.

If I had to choose one guitar, it would probably be the PRS.

But thank you for reading and commenting.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 13, 2020, 01:21:51 am
Boss JS-8 eBand

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/TDK8vgTnpNqXomgK9TIOuwhiiJKTy0lsyOMAmZ9twmEfotafr0_FVmEW1F-K-oCvfCszqliPfxibxyoRvUXok1BIXZp9axE0z7Q-O7RlrUJLc0o7HmKY4DmQ2kIjaNq4V91HVtiEBiU=w2400)

This isn't a conventional amp, although it can function as one. It's basically designed as an all-in-one practice tool. And it's probably the "amplifier" I have used more than any of my other amps over the last several years.

Firstly, although it has speakers, the speakers in it are rubbish. But I primarily use it on headphones so as to not annoy the family. The next generation version of this, the JS-10, has much better speakers and a better audio engine in general and I have considered upgrading a few times, but couldn't justify it.

It's basically an MP3 player that you can connect a guitar into and play along. In may respects it's similar to the Tascam MP-GT1 unit I used to use, but in a table-top form and with better facilities and better sound. It has a full suite of guitar amp modelling and effects onboard which can be saved into patches. One of the useful capabilities is to link patches to songs so that when you select a song you get up to two associated patches automatic dialled in for you.

You can, of course, just use it as a headphone amp (or a desktop amp through the dreadful little speakers (or line out into something better). Or you could use it just as an MP3 player and play music on it.

The MP3 player supports a range of capabilities for A-B looping, slowing down, etc. songs and it comes with a bunch of pre-recorded drum beat and backing track loops in a range of styles. You can even record directly to it, or plug it into a computer and use as an audio interface to record into a DAW.

It also has a metronome, tuner, and an AUX input. You can connect a footswitch to it for various functions including using it as a basic looper.

Oh, and it works with Bass, and has Bass amp presets too.

It's not the easiest user interface in the world, and there are no modern capabilities like Bluetooth or smartphone app support. Transferring songs on and off it is via USB or a SD memory card and a special app on the computer. But, in some ways, I think it's better for it (for me, at least); there's no distractions and no reaching for a phone and messing with screen timeouts and unlocking, Bluetooth connections, battery charge, etc.. I have it loaded with a bunch of backing tracks for stuff I'm learning or which came with music books.

I've used a few more modern tools which operate using a smartphone and I've not enjoyed the experience. One of those is the much-hyped Positive Grid Spark amp which I will discuss in a later post, but I've largely gone back to the JS-8 because I find it easier and more satisfying to use for most of my practice.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 13, 2020, 04:57:31 am
Another interesting read about another piece of kit, Keith.

Makes me think I might have done better buying something like this rather than an amp after I indulged in acquiring an electric ... ah well, what's done is done.

Also read your comment about Mixbus. I wonder how that compares to Reaper, which is what I use. Both under $100 and providing capability comparable to much more expensive products. So good options for folks wanting to a little bit more in terms of the full production process (record, edit, mix, master)
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 13, 2020, 12:09:18 pm
Another interesting read about another piece of kit, Keith.

Makes me think I might have done better buying something like this rather than an amp after I indulged in acquiring an electric ... ah well, what's done is done.

Thanks David. Of course, I have amps as well so I see this more as a specific practice tool. The JS-10 (which has a decent amp and speaker setup) might be usable in place of an amp, but the JS-8 speakers really are dreadful. I could see this sort of setup being something a student could use in their bedroom in place of an amp but, these days and for the price, there are probably better options (the Spark amp I mentioned) especially for a generation that seems to struggle to use technology which isn't on a smartphone or tablet...

Quote
Also read your comment about Mixbus. I wonder how that compares to Reaper, which is what I use. Both under $100 and providing capability comparable to much more expensive products. So good options for folks wanting to a little bit more in terms of the full production process (record, edit, mix, master)

As a general rule all of these DAWs pretty much do the same thing and what is best for you is often based on what you are more familiar with. The main thing that varies, in my experience, is the range of built-in tools and the workflow. Mixbus is, to some degree, a commercial version of Ardour, which I have used for years. You can get Ardour for $45. Mixbus has some "special sauce" which makes it different from both Ardour and other DAWs. I will write about this in a separate post.

I tried Reaper briefly, now that it is available on Linux, but I couldn't see anything compelling to switch from Ardour. Mixbus, being based on Ardour, is familiar enough to me to make the change easily, even to the point I can load Ardour projects.

By the way, I'm using the "full" version of Mixbus, Mixbus 32C, which I got for $99 on a recent sale. If you are interested in Mixbus it's worth registering and downloading the free trial. You'll get a fair bit of promotional email spam from Harrison, but sooner or later they will send you a sale offer.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: RC23 on September 13, 2020, 12:44:59 pm
This is a great read. Thanks for sharing the stories behind your gear.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 13, 2020, 01:00:23 pm
Ardour v6

www.ardour.org (http://www.ardour.org)

This is a bit of a diversion from the posts on guitars and amps, but the subject of DAWs has been raised and it is, in some ways, as much of my toolkit as a guitar or amp. In fact my use of Ardour pre-dates my first electric guitar or amp. Some screen shots...

Mixing view:
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/8KM_yaY_UvjjZqpQtJRD34NoUaB1cN9gwYLApT4uwZsx54OD8Ml3al3CaULEBM1jXYKisczDA34pv77Lovmu5snEn1yZoYc0StoBbS6WAGpRka7AcOrn4mzFgvt9lTqxLsiTLgpnfZM=w2400)

Track editing view
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/wPAcAGHj3DGDwG5ymsrSsx0Bgb1hv4hwUeZndS6vawZfGbXRTDT7OB2hUOYZHToFiAJR0njtEGcRJ546sfuVQWB9P_2fTVxig7tymTslr2gdZOOUVfQqWTlG9MIbfbbNCbFR4SjgKp0=w2400)

A video project
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/WmCc2rteBFIEuxooPT-WnfpdBSjq7e3TK_CaCF9Z6b3Y8QRGmPYYgjBw-CPpypNsUaoPeS-_9UZ2Na0ySEO1LZ-EvDZsz_MYkaaAI7UYPr8owkT7y9DuKcfoxbs_rL50-TwKIZhc6wA=w2400)

(The last is a screen shot from the project I used for my recent Both Sides Now video (https://justinguitarcommunity.com/index.php?topic=47342.msg425429#msg425429) in AVYP).

Ardour (as in "our DAW") is an open-source DAW that was originally developed on Linux but has, more recently, been ported to Mac and now to Windows. It's a "donation-ware" project in that to get a working download version you are asked to make a donation to the project. The suggested donation is $45 but you could pay as little as $1 if you like.

As it is an open-source project you can, of course, download the source code for free and compile/build it yourself, but this is beyond most people.

Ardour supports all of the conventional capabilities of a multi-track DAW including audio and MIDI tracks, busses, plugins and so on. It also supports video projects such as syncing audio soundtracks to video. It was originally built around the Linux Jack audio server (https://jackaudio.org/) which basically allows complete freedom of audio and MIDI routing between applications as well as centralised tempo, timeclock and transport controls. It was also, originally, based on the open-source plugin standards LADSPA, DSSI and LV2 although it also supports AU and VST plugins.

Compared with many DAWs I have tried, Ardour offers very flexible routing and bussing capabilities enabling you to build some quite complex setups, especially if used in conjunction with Jack and routing between it and external applications.

(https://qjackctl.sourceforge.io/image/qjackctl-screenshot1.png)

Ardour is in it's 6th major version with v6.0 announced  (https://ardour.org/news/6.0.html)in July last year (2019). It is under continuous and active development and v6.3 was announced 3 days ago (https://ardour.org/whatsnew.html) (at time of writing this post).

Because of it's background, coming from Linux, historically Ardour didn't ship with any plugins as most Linux distributions come with dozens of LADPA/LV2/DSSI plugins  (https://manual.ardour.org/working-with-plugins/getting-plugins/)including the excellent CALF Studio gear plugins (https://calf-studio-gear.org/) and virtual instruments like Helm (https://tytel.org/helm/), ZynAddSubFX (https://zynaddsubfx.sourceforge.io/), Fluidsynth (http://www.fluidsynth.org/),  LinuxSampler (https://www.linuxsampler.org/), and DrumGizmo (https://drumgizmo.org/wiki/doku.php?id=about).

In recent years, because it's been ported to Mac and Windows, they have started to include some plugins with the package.

In my view Ardour is a fantastic DAW and should be considered as an alternative to Reaper and others for those looking for a step up from tools like Audacity. I have only ever used it on Linux so I can't speak for how well it works on Mac or Windows, although the main developer is a Mac user, so I suspect it would work very well in that environment.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 13, 2020, 02:16:38 pm
Thanks for the replies to my comments, Keith, and for more on Ardour.

I guess in my case I bought the electric mainly because I was in the USA and could buy one at a much better than local price. Also thought maybe I would pursue the lead course.  And then be able to use an electric in my own original productions.  And for all that, probably would have done better with the kind of practice rig you are talking about.  The electric and the amp I have (a Blackstar TVP 15w) see very little use relative to my acoustic, since becoming more interested in finger-picking after completing the BC.

Reaper and Ardour seem without digging in, to seem similar. Though I did like that visualisation of the routing. So probably my situation is the reverse of yours. I am running on a Windows PC, have a couple of years of Reaper under my belt, and for the projects I do I am sure I am not taking advantage of all I could do with Reaper. So while I do structure my projects and make use of routing, bus tracks etc, nothing terribly complicated, that the visualisation is needed. So getting a trial and spending time on that would probably not be worthwhile for me.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 13, 2020, 02:40:04 pm
MixBus 32C

https://harrisonconsoles.com/site/mixbus32c.html (https://harrisonconsoles.com/site/mixbus32c.html)

Mixing view
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/X0HSWCMz85g3rS3b58-VXikzh6c2nhIOMby8i8WHhSxP5UhXknlZt5yIk8C_r4DjB-JLrixzVOg6WxpG1Qnk9oX_ovD4Oa4EfUp6hb2nwaqKeBMc-ZLGYfQu6MG-2NHYZ5yPBEVRjks=w2400)

Track edit view
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/uivPX15DSR5oyXhqEluPv4AGqqEr62sLfoMIfTQnqlo0-fqLG_IO-OXW4XmQG9-AilKT58jzGg8Xfv4kVTe_pOWLxl6q_1S_fkzIdwHC0eb9L-_yCxrx_ipH79XqgddCJRhoIbfU1qU=w2400)

Mixbus is a commercial DAW from renowned mixing console maker Harrison Consoles. Harrison Consoles have been used by many iconic artists and their records over the last few decades including Queen and Michael Jackson.

Mixbus is heavily based on the Ardour platform and Harrison are actually a major sponsor of Ardour, as well as a contributor of code and plugins to the Ardour project. Probably more than 90% of the functionality between Ardour and Mixbus is the same, as you might notice from comparing the screen shots of the two.

But there are some key differences, and it's these that have always made me interested in Mixbus, enough that when I was presented with an offer to get Mixbus 32C for $99, I jumped at it.

Note that Mixbus is in two versions: Standard Mixbus is normally $89 and is great for most users. Mixbus 32C is the professional version which pretty much fully emulates the renowned Harrison analogue hardware console and is normally $349, so getting 32C for $99 was a bargain.

So what's the differences?

Well, Mixbus is not only different from Ardour, but from pretty much any other mainstream DAW in one important aspect: how it sounds!

In a previous post I stated that most DAWs pretty much do the same thing, and that is true. Most DAWs are totally "transparent" and have no sound of their own. They do not colour or impact the nature or quality of the audio being mixed in any way on their own. That is, generally, by design and is a reason why digital audio recording and mixing is better than analogue audio recording and mixing. However, it's also a reason why it's worse...

Analogue recording and mixing systems degraded the audio and coloured the sound. A lot of this was highly undesirable. For instance: every time you "bounced" tracks from one tape to another the audio quality was impaired; every time you pass the audio signal through electronics, including the console itself, it was distorted by the circuits and the noise level increased; every time you mix or combine multiple tracks together, a "summing" function is used which adds further distortion and noise.

Digital doesn't have these problems: you can mix and bounce tracks an unlimited number of times, route it any way you want, and perform unlimited mixes with no loss of quality. However...

In past, analogue console makers, like Harrison, took advantage of the distortions caused by the analogue electronic circuits and tuned them to make them enhance, rather than degrade, the audio as much as possible. They weren't able to eliminate the distortion, but they could make it "musical". The result of this is that analogue consoles "have a sound" and a Neve will impart a different sound from a Harrison, or an SSL console. Even different models of console would sound different from each other. Experienced producers and mixing engineers would often choose a studio to use based on the sort of sound they were after and the console that was available in that studio.

Digital mixing via DAWs doesn't have this. DAWs do not touch the sound in any way: once the signal is in digital format it, effectively remains "intact" throughout the DAW unless the user deliberately colours it with things like EQ and compression plugins. Without this, digitally mixed music can sound harsh and sterile, and lacking the warmth and "musicality" that was often imparted by analogue consoles.

You don't have to take my word for it. Here is Grammy-winning mixing engineer Andrew Scheps on the subject ( the relevant part is at 3 mins and 21, but the whole video is worth watching):





Now, of course, we have loads of plugins available to us, many of which emulate old analogue EQs, compressors, etc. very well so we can, if we know what we are doing, get some of that character and musicality back into our mixes.

But one of the big things that most DAWs don't do well and which is difficult to emulate with plugins is the summing function. Digital summing is absolutely precise and numerically correct, but it's not very "musical". What many professional producers do, to solve this, is to perform the final mix summing function in an external (aka "outbourd") analogue summing device. They do this e converting the individual channels or busses back to separate analogue channels and pushing them into an external analogue mixer. Some of these can be very expensive (https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/analogue-summing-mixers).

Why Mixbus is different is that it includes an emulation of the renowned Harrison analogue console circuit on a number of its mixing busses. That means you should get all of the benefits of using an outboard analogue summing mixer without the hassle or expense.

This also points to one of the key differences between Ardour ad Mixbus: Ardour has busses and you can create any number of them as required (and you can do the same in Mixbus) but these will do digital summing. Mixbus has a set of specific analogue summing busses that create that musical, analogue sound. Mixbus 32C additionally (over Standard Mixbus) has a full emulation of the Harrison analogue console EQ circuitry, as well as additional analogue summing busses.

Mixbus also has built-in tape saturation emulation (in the screen shot, it's the analogue-style meters in each of the mix bus strips).

So my reason for getting Mixbus over and above Ardour was to experiment with this and, hopefully, to improve some of my mixes.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 13, 2020, 02:54:13 pm
Reaper and Ardour seem without digging in, to seem similar. Though I did like that visualisation of the routing. So probably my situation is the reverse of yours. I am running on a Windows PC, have a couple of years of Reaper under my belt, and for the projects I do I am sure I am not taking advantage of all I could do with Reaper. So while I do structure my projects and make use of routing, bus tracks etc, nothing terribly complicated, that the visualisation is needed. So getting a trial and spending time on that would probably not be worthwhile for me.

Hi David,

In general, I wouldn't suggest that anyone who knows and is happy with another tool, like Reaper, start looking at Ardour or Mixbus (or any other DAW). The only reason to do so would be if you were either unhappy with the tool you are using for some reason, or there was a capability on a different tool that you thought you could use. In my case, the built-in analogue summing and EQ emulation of Mixbus 32C was what I wanted to try. But, as I said, fundamentally Mixbus and Ardour are very similar so it's not really a huge change for me.

I think a key differentiation between DAWs is the workflow. Mixbus 32C, particularly, is set up to support a workflow that an experienced audio engineer who has worked on physical consoles would find familiar. Ardour inherits some of that. That isn't necessarily "better", just different.

In fact, to a degree, it makes things more complex: Ardour and Mixbus have a huge amount of functionality, much of which is designed to support workflow optimization for experienced users. Some of this comes at the expense of perceived user-friendliness.

The EQ section on Mixbus 32C is a great example: it has simple knobs for the centre frequency and gain for different bands which will be familiar to a physical console user.

(https://manula.r.sizr.io/large/user/3491/img/32v6-eq-annotated1.jpg)

But managing EQ in this way is quite opaque to someone who is used to a nice parametric or graphic EQ with a sexy GUI. The idea here is that, really, you should be using your ears, not your eyes, to set the EQ but there's a learning curve. Of course, you can always ignore the channel strip EQ and use a more familiar plug-in.

But there is no harm in giving it try and seeing how you get on with it, especially as the trial version free (and Ardour is pretty cheap).

Note that the routing visualization screen shot I posted is actually not Ardour itself, but is part of the Jack audio framework that is on Linux. Ardour and Mixbus both use a "routing matrix" approach which I will post a screenshot for.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 13, 2020, 03:16:17 pm
So while I do structure my projects and make use of routing, bus tracks etc, nothing terribly complicated, that the visualisation is needed. So getting a trial and spending time on that would probably not be worthwhile for me.

As a follow up, this is how Ardour and Mixbus visualise routing. Basically, it's a matrix with sources down the side and destinations along the bottom. This is used for routing from hardware inputs (i.e. from an audio capture device) as well as from tracks to busses, etc.

Here's a few screen shots:

Input routing:
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/Iczii1yWjDQAn08I70ISOV8MNrSR0_OZEu1pBO2ov5p38bwp7XIO8tSUqJHDk8Lsh0Gdw-VaUCqIOsuYxvl6ROeWuW1aP1nuW_3nvlJy-HlToTL20-Orre6wi2w8D9QEd7y7c7zgLXw=w2400)

Track to bus routing
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/gdd3UvmbNALP54DwOhdLXYUqcSTVF9A_d3k8byZ87cYnWfJ0OEePNmcT22ecPLqjpRCkwnqXuzXlld06MRE4VxZBfnzmAPDqS4NGW3WffBVxLs5Cb6_0Wo72aKYrKMdDU5FIEX8rCko=w2400)

Output routing
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/f_3IXcVBb2v_JwnE31-8fsG0KcTrt0KprajsNa52BEvtVu2rvmgpva-m9RR9HVZECpINLpIZoGqP1ewfdNxq2LKVpOPA-sGBMdZoL2MHs64eP6BAYg37n5qNVMB4dc6Opqz4_dtP99s=w2400)

Ardour also supports a more conventional "send/insert" interface on each track, which is basically a different way to configure routing.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/X8pMZCzifAESmx6ZhJ1_47rrbWkAtvkAb8NiWnTROOjea5qQMU83rgu6-ZI82zBCMheOSgoV4OnzBkzr2UKpSl4KzozTYg8jM7zkkGV4c0piyhsbrVKuio_n7c8yOTrGTpmFe881DqM=w2400)

Of course, there's always the Online manual (https://manual.ardour.org/signal-routing/Patchbay/) to look at.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 13, 2020, 03:36:27 pm
Thanks for all the extras Keith.

Not much else to say in reply.

I did see you clarified that the routing visualisation was not in the DAW. Reaper also uses a matrix.

Hope things are settling back into routine now you are home and that you get some time to play ... eventually record some more songs.  I really really enjoyed your last piece.

Take care
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 13, 2020, 05:34:03 pm
I did see you clarified that the routing visualisation was not in the DAW. Reaper also uses a matrix.

Hi David,

If you have the matrix capability in Reaper already and want something more, then you might want to look at installing Jackrouter for Windows. Here's a video:





Quote
Hope things are settling back into routine now you are home and that you get some time to play ... eventually record some more songs.  I really really enjoyed your last piece.

Thank you very much. My problem is actually that I'm very bad at routine. My daughter reckons I may have ADD.

I've been trying to decompress a bit as well as acclimatize back into family life and the new, chaotic "normal" that is going on in the UK now.

Four of us rang the church bells for a socially distanced wedding yesterday, and we rang again for service this morning. As you might expect there are quite strict guidelines on what we can and cannot do: we can only ring on alternative ropes and each person can only touch their own rope. Once a rope has been handled, noone else can touch it for 72 hours. We have to ring in masks, and we are only allowed a maximum of 15 minutes from start to end of ringing, which means we have to raise the bells, ring, and lower the bells within that time. That's quite hard work, especially on the bigger bells. Normally we raise the bells first and have a short rest before we start ringing.

For the wedding, the missus and I went to the church the week before to raise the four bells we would be using so that they would be ready 72 hour later.

We are doing handbell practice with ringing friends once a week or so, although that will also be limited from Monday with the new rules. The good news is that, at least with handbells, we only need 3 of us to do anything, as we can ring two bells each.

I have a laundry list of stuff around the house that needs sorting out, some of which is DIY for me, and other things are dealing with workmen and contractors. A bunch of it is internal "IT" stuff, like a massive overhaul/rewire of my office and home lab.

I'm also waiting to hear about film extras gig which may take up a few days of my time over the next few weeks, including costume fitting. It'll be the first one I've done for about 18 months, and it sounds like they are being very careful with how they run things. It will be a far cry from some of the sets I've been on with 400 or so extras crammed into various busses.

I am getting some time to practice and play guitar, but I'm not very disciplined about it. I did mention I'm not great with routine...

As I said in my post to Maggie, this thread has actually been very useful to me to help me evaluate my equipment and how I use it, but also what I am learning. I've actually been catching up on my bass guitar practice recently, but I also would like to spend more time on the 6-string. I have also bought a new toy, but it's related to something I've had for a while so I'll post about that later in this thread when it's time.

I have another fingerstyle piece I have been working on, but it has a rather tricky bit in the middle that is tripping me up at the moment, and I also have some pain in my fretting arm I'm trying to remedy, which is restricting how much time I can practice in one go. If I get it down I'll post something.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 14, 2020, 12:29:48 am
Vox Pathfinder 15R

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/HaLUtuKxJg1kfaHLtjeMfJblgMDQeOAXSFLBokjetk6Uu6O2dSuGDcOGhoMAR-Na1gCdssIlUpdoMzRAPS4cNxxj7p5c-mh-R3v-VRS7PrP3aDCfE2ZEBb2lqytbbTvqO76qAJHrHIY=w2400)

Back on track with the hardware, I've had this little amp for several years. I picked it up from the guitar teacher I was using at the time for a bargain price. It was taking up space at his house he wanted to use for other things, and I had done him a couple of favours so he offered it to me. At the price it was a steal and, for a while this was the amp I used in my office.

It's a lovely little amp but it's a little difficult to control. It's quite easy to get a clean tone on it and it goes into overdrive quite well using the gain control, but it quickly gets loud. There's also a boost control on it but, in my view, it's too aggressive. Part of the problem is it's difficult to balance the volume between clean and overdriven sounds as it starts getting so much louder as soon as it starts breaking up. I've not really tried it with a overdrive pedal, but that might work better as the break-up is happening in the pedal rather than in the amp.

But the tones you get when you dial it in are pretty good for a solid state amp. The reverb on it is decent and it has a vibrato, although I'm not really keen on vibrato as an effect (in general). It looks pretty good too, although mine really needs a good clean up.

Since I got the my Katana which has become my office amp, this has mostly sat in the cupboard unused and getting dusty although I have now put it in the conservatory and may try to use it a bit more. I'm loathed to get rid of it because it's such a nice little amp and really isn't taking up too much space.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: batwoman on September 14, 2020, 12:50:17 am
I've been trying to decompress a bit as well as acclimatize back into family life and the new, chaotic "normal" that is going on in the UK now.

Four of us rang the church bells for a socially distanced wedding yesterday, and we rang again for service this morning. As you might expect there are quite strict guidelines on what we can and cannot do: we can only ring on alternative ropes and each person can only touch their own rope. Once a rope has been handled, no one else can touch it for 72 hours. We have to ring in masks, and we are only allowed a maximum of 15 minutes from start to end of ringing, which means we have to raise the bells, ring, and lower the bells within that time. That's quite hard work, especially on the bigger bells. Normally we raise the bells first and have a short rest before we start ringing.

For the wedding, the missus and I went to the church the week before to raise the four bells we would be using so that they would be ready 72 hour later.

We are doing handbell practice with ringing friends once a week or so, although that will also be limited from Monday with the new rules. The good news is that, at least with handbells, we only need 3 of us to do anything, as we can ring two bells each.

I have a laundry list of stuff around the house that needs sorting out, some of which is DIY for me, and other things are dealing with workmen and contractors. A bunch of it is internal "IT" stuff, like a massive overhaul/rewire of my office and home lab.

I'm also waiting to hear about film extras gig which may take up a few days of my time over the next few weeks, including costume fitting. It'll be the first one I've done for about 18 months, and it sounds like they are being very careful with how they run things. It will be a far cry from some of the sets I've been on with 400 or so extras crammed into various busses.

I am getting some time to practice and play guitar, but I'm not very disciplined about it. I did mention I'm not great with routine...

I have another fingerstyle piece I have been working on, but it has a rather tricky bit in the middle that is tripping me up at the moment, and I also have some pain in my fretting arm I'm trying to remedy, which is restricting how much time I can practice in one go. If I get it down I'll post something.

Cheers,

Keith

This is wonderful to read Keith.

I've been following along, increasingly amazed at the vastness and depth of your knowledge and experience. I even understand some of it, the rest makes my eyes boggle.

I though Linux was Charlie Brown's best friend  ;D
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 19, 2020, 10:48:31 am
This is wonderful to read Keith.

I've been following along, increasingly amazed at the vastness and depth of your knowledge and experience. I even understand some of it, the rest makes my eyes boggle.

Thanks Maggie. It's only easy for me because I've been doing it most of my life.

Quote
I though Linux was Charlie Brown's best friend  ;D

 ;D

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 19, 2020, 11:29:13 am
Bugera G5 Infinium Head and Harley Benton 1x12 Cabinet with Celestion Vintage 30

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/F4-xCuPY1NacEQbe76Ez6Wcu-u2zk2YGd3-goHBNwlWzqP78SkS2g35uFzuAi6hy2zBRblwe9VNzxaz3qwSiYAhS9bRR7NV51jmCdig9ATAZ_VSPbBoymrCBgpLtKcewL3HszxxI2v8=w2400)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/NMXzkI3HW_jCPuAQsIcz94TgYHTeKy2FtUb2TP-BreMzbsDTDWAadyvCkoQ0HfhQi8jZI_3m4_gPj101WN2t57SKcQAYpoBMpAFcj-sisUtxp061UrLj1guuXnRGWMyoynTg-JiABpg=w2400)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/07rSvcIBgym5HnIbdaE2ctHwrRZyy9wm4erWgQI1DEEW-pFEr0ZBCttQkfYXA0O6FAXA31XvUZt4dj8Qg0nuOyhiL4lcEsKp-5YN0GB2W0ufOnJmypR8VVIgzVGT1A8cjxuhrKFP3Bk=w2400)

I got these several years ago as, until that point, I only had small solid-state/modlling amps, and I fancied getting a valve (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-P4sDnNOMZI) amp. I wanted something with an FX loop, and I liked the idea of a separate head and cabinet. After a fair bit of research I went with this pairing.

The amp is 5 W but, as a valve amp it goes pretty loud. Luckily it also has an attenuator so it can be used at more family-friendly volumes. The amp has an ECC83 in the preamp and a 12BH7 in the power amp. It has a clean and an overdrive channel which are foot switchable with the supplied footswitch, as is the built-in reverb.

I'm currently using the stock valves. I did try swapping the ECC83 in the preamp for a JJ replacement as this was recommended by some, but I was underwhelmed and swapped it back.

The cabinet is an absolute bargain given it actually cost me less than if I had purchased the speaker separately. It's probably not the best made or prettiest cabinet in the world, but it's good enough for my purposes.

The combination gives me a wide range of clean, bluesy and rock tones. The clean channel doesn't have as much character as, say, a Fender but it takes pedals well and, with a bit of boost in the front, overdrives nicely.

The overdrive channel also has a "morph" control which is supposed to allow you to vary the tone between "US" and "UK". To my ears the difference is not that great, but it does affect the mid-range somewhat. It's not something I really find to be that useful. This isn't a high-gain amp so it benefits from an external pedal pushing it. The FX loop would also support using an external pre-amp pedal, which I may try at some point.

Most of the time, at the moment, I've found it most useful to stick with the clean channel and use pedals in the front end to push into overdrive, or to create distortion.

One of the things which annoys me slightly is that it defaults to the reverb being on when powered up. The on-board reverb is pretty good, but I don't always want it, or I want to use an external reverb. Recently I have disconnected the foot-switch and turned the reverb level down to zero and am experimenting with controlling gain and reverb with external pedals.

I've not really used this as much as I should recently: I have too many other options distracting me, and I do most of my practice on other amps at the moment. But I do enjoy it a lot when I do use it.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 19, 2020, 11:47:28 am
Another winner by the sounds, Keith.

Now if there was only enough time in the days and weeks to enjoy all the different instruments, amps, and pedals :)

PS Haven't yet watched the video about the Jackrouter, though suspect it will be more for interest sake as I am not sure if I have a use-case. But you never know until you take a look ...

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 19, 2020, 05:06:13 pm
Thanks Davd,

Now if there was only enough time in the days and weeks to enjoy all the different instruments, amps, and pedals :)

Yeah, I really have acquired too much stuff over the years, especially amps. I'm using this thread partly as a way to think about what I have, what I really want to keep and to decide whether I get rid some stuff, but it's really difficult to make those decisions. If nothing else it's making me use some of the gear I have again.

Quote
PS Haven't yet watched the video about the Jackrouter, though suspect it will be more for interest sake as I am not sure if I have a use-case. But you never know until you take a look ...

It was more for interest than anything else. It's based on the Jack Audio Connection Kit which originated on Linux and is the de-facto standard for pro-audio on that platform. The original author is also the developer behind Ardour and Mixbus.

It is incredibly powerful but it can also be incredibly complex, because it can enable complex scenarios.

And one of the  main challenges of it is that you can build a complex network of MIDI and audio connections between applications, but as soon as you close one of those applications (or it crashes) you lose the connections and have to rebuild them. If you want to rebuild the environment in a future session, you have to manually open all of the applications and reconnect all of the connections.

In Linux they have, at least, partly solved this with "session management" which allows you to register applications and the connections between them into a configuration file and it will rebuild them. Some of the apps that you use for this, are incredibly sophisticated allowing you to create and save "studio" set ups which can include separate "rooms" with patching between them. You could even map some of this to physical setups with connections between apps running on different computers across a network with netjack.

As an example of how messy it can get, this is what the Jack connection manager app Catia makes of the Ardour setup I previously showed in the matrix. This is simply (!) Ardour running with a bunch of tracks and no other application, but because Ardour exposes all the connections to Jack, including internal ones between busses, these appear in Catia:

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/z2pvfX5btFsKbjN80Cp696pD1Vs9dpblOlj0kvPAQoOqo4feUjMjWWaxdRAEmtq6CQ-gNcx2VOH9KDl0h6nHK51jUFM43QWvOCHED3Ydil32_QzHdjo3KOGB9MrP0HboCQRiJXH6Syo=w2400)

(Blue is audio connections, red is MIDI).

It's amazingly powerful but, frankly, for most people it's complete overkill. And, increasingly, you can do 99% of what you would normally need to within a single application like Ardour. In fact even the original author of Jack recommends people against using it now, unless they have a specific use for it.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 20, 2020, 05:36:31 am
Keith,

My sense is that there is a larger, more active used market in Europe and US, that there is in SA (though maybe that is very much an untested assumption on the SA side). So at least should you decide that you can reduce the assets and still achieve all the various use cases then you can sell those assets. I have no idea if I decided I wanted to sell my Epi LP and amp to fund satisfying some new GAS urge, if I could do so.

Thanks for more on JACK ... with all that in mind I am more convinced that I don't have a need, appreciate what it is, and can skip the video.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 24, 2020, 11:01:19 pm
Orange Micro Terror (and cab)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/dO0fp2nT-Xd7YIioCKE9eBz6Uz8E-tTz8R0YAWugEZ7bMc3VJtBWWV3W4kxNG7NuQKrum7v5bEfr35GHWnroBYkOj04Bz3xf39M4GMHNDk4xzcZLQkNEpDa2nfvJijCp1cEFUSXaomg=w2400)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/j_idgVhVpNaeRdidQtrRbRXyqzfr6Z5TODW8YG5bVUcvQ44kT5aeLbvO5LtUVQTLfYY-cBgQNWu6FQuU1HsADKlGKlVo4QJUkydlyFu0vLYe6qNg2dAQQtl4kdvobXCxi-Q8Cq_AK8U=w2400)

I've had the amp head for a while; it was part of the stash of equipment I purchased from my friend Anita. I purchased the cabinet new quite recently because I decided it was about time I used this little thing more.

When I first got it I tried it out plugging it into my Harley Benton 1x12. It was good, but it wasn't convenient to keep swapping the cabinet between this and the Bugera G5, and it wasn't compelling enough for me to use it that much, so it's mostly sat on the side in it's box.

About 18 months ago I lent it to a friend at a local jam group I attended, and he was very tempted to buy it off me, but eventually he decided he didn't need it and gave it back. I could probably sell it, but I'm not desperate for the relatively small amount of money I would get for it and could do without the hassle of dealing with selling it, so I've decided to keep it for now.

Rather than have it sitting on the side in a box I decided, on a whim, to get the matching cabinet for it so I could leave it permanently set up. I have already been using it a lot more. It has quite a "spanky" clean tone with loads of mid-range character and some breakup, especially when I use it with my Fender Tele. And it dirties up nicely with a boost or overdrive in front of it.

It only has one channel, and not much in the way of controls (gain, tone, and volume), but the controls that are there work really well. And with the FX unit I'm using in front of it, it's ideal. In some ways more so than my Bugera. It also has a headphone output and an aux input which I will probably never use.

The matching cabinet is (as you might expect from an 8in speaker) a little "boxy" and relatively quiet, but for home use that's a really good thing, and it hardly takes up any space on the side. It also allows you to crank the amp a little without it getting ear-splitingly loud (this little thing is 20W) which means you can get some nice pre-amp tones from the 12AX7.

Plugging it into the HB 1x12 cabinet gives it a much louder voice if I ever need that.

The one small issue I have with this is amp that it is so small and light that it's easy to knock over, especially with the guitar cable plugged into it; slightly too much movement on the cable and the amp can go flying. As you can see from the photo, a solution to that is to pass the guitar cable underneath the head and down the back. It makes it look neater too.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Alex6strings on September 25, 2020, 12:08:00 am
I have one of those little orange amps and speaker, pretty cool.   Wow you have some gear Keith, Love it!

Sent from my CPH1920 using JustinGuitar Community mobile app (http://r.tapatalk.com/byo?rid=93296)

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 25, 2020, 06:52:30 am
This is such fun to see what is next, Keith. You may be inducing some GAS in the Forum.

Now all I need is to hear another song from you ... I know, I know ... life, the universe, and everything tends to conspire against ... but after the wonderful first posting I am hungry for more majik
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 28, 2020, 11:53:36 pm
I have one of those little orange amps and speaker, pretty cool.   Wow you have some gear Keith, Love it!

You know the saying: all the gear and no idea ;D

Seriously though, I am lucky to have the gear I have and a lot of it I came to own through accident, friendships, and the generosity of others. I am really rather spoiled for choice and I should use it more. Life (and my personality) has often got in the way of me doing so, but I'm working on that.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 28, 2020, 11:59:50 pm
This is such fun to see what is next, Keith. You may be inducing some GAS in the Forum.

Now all I need is to hear another song from you ... I know, I know ... life, the universe, and everything tends to conspire against ... but after the wonderful first posting I am hungry for more majik

Thanks David. This probably wasn't quite what you meant, but I have been playing bass a bit more recently, and I've previously shown video of me playing the basses I used to own, and I thought it was fair to give the one I currently have an airing.

This is a song I've been working on in the last few weeks from a set of backing tracks I have. I've only just got it up to speed and I felt it was appropriate given the month is almost over.

The production on this is a bit rushed and not particularly slick, but I didn't want to spend too much time on it. The audio isn't a great mix but it's mainly so you can hear the bass. And I somehow truncated the video abruptly, but I couldn't be bothered to go back and re-render it.

Watching it back has made me realise I need to work a lot on my timing, but I have only just got it up to full speed, so I'll keep working on it. I hope you like it.





Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: glpguitar on September 29, 2020, 12:13:25 am
Such a classic tune to show some good bass playing!

Now off to read some of the interesting DAW and routing conversation in this thread.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on September 29, 2020, 06:42:47 am
LOL ... you right Keith, I was thinking something more like the recording shared from the hotel room just before you headed home, to hear some of those electrics.

Nevertheless, thanks for sharing, appreciated that look into what you are working on. Your bass playing is looking pretty good to me, seemed smooth, consistent.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: close2u on September 29, 2020, 08:24:16 am
September in September.
Good to see you playing and standing and grooving Keith.
Nothing will get your timing and tempo and rhythm chops moving like a little funky stuff.
How about having a go at the guitar on that song too? Some lovely light strumming on Maj7, min7 and dom chords, plus octaves, double stops and more.  8)
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 29, 2020, 08:46:49 am
@glpguitar Thank you very much. If you want any further information on the DAW and routing stuff, feel free to ask. I was having a lot of fun for a bit yesterday with my Akai MPK Mini, syncing the MIDI clock with my DAW and messing with the arpeggiator on the Akai.

@DavidP Thanks, I've been working on my bass playing since I got back as I was getting into it about 18 months ago before work and travel got in the way, but then I didn't get to touch a bass in anger for about a year. I've learned a couple of songs in the last few weeks.

@Close2u An interesting thought, but I have other fish to fry at the moment, and I don't want to spread myself too thinly Maybe it's one I'll come back to at some point.

Cheers,

Keith

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Alex6strings on September 29, 2020, 09:42:58 pm
I loved that bass playing video... all i want to do now is play a big ole bass.   Thanks for the inspiration Keith, sounds cool!   You look to be a natural on the bass!
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 29, 2020, 10:25:08 pm
I loved that bass playing video... all i want to do now is play a big ole bass.   Thanks for the inspiration Keith, sounds cool!   You look to be a natural on the bass!

Thanks Alex,

It's actually taken me a few years to get to the point where I can feel relaxed whilst playing the bass. Of course, it also needs material I'm familiar with. I struggle with improvising on the bass just as I do on the guitar.

As for being a natural, not at all. I need a lot of work on my rhythm and consistency. I also often loose focus and suddenly forget where I am or how to finish a line. It's all stuff I'm aware of and working on.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Alex6strings on September 29, 2020, 11:10:32 pm
Thanks Alex,

It's actually taken me a few years to get to the point where I can feel relaxed whilst playing the bass. Of course, it also needs material I'm familiar with. I struggle with improvising on the bass just as I do on the guitar.

As for being a natural, not at all. I need a lot of work on my rhythm and consistency. I also often loose focus and suddenly forget where I am or how to finish a line. It's all stuff I'm aware of and working on.

Cheers,

Keith

I can relate to that completely.   I'm the same.  I switch off and then it just comes crumbling down.  It's actually sometimes worse when I'm playing well because all of a sudden my mind starts spinning and thinking, 'yeah this sounds good'  forgetting that if i'm not totally focused on playing I have about 3 seconds before in turns to a train wreck.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: batwoman on September 30, 2020, 02:20:55 am
This is a song I've been working on in the last few weeks from a set of backing tracks I have. I've only just got it up to speed and I felt it was appropriate given the month is almost over.

The production on this is a bit rushed and not particularly slick, but I didn't want to spend too much time on it. The audio isn't a great mix but it's mainly so you can hear the bass. And I somehow truncated the video abruptly, but I couldn't be bothered to go back and re-render it.

Watching it back has made me realise I need to work a lot on my timing, but I have only just got it up to full speed, so I'll keep working on it. I hope you like it.

Cheers,

Keith

The only think I want more of is dB Keith. Like cowbell, one can never have enough bass  ;D
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on September 30, 2020, 12:08:35 pm
The only think I want more of is dB Keith. Like cowbell, one can never have enough bass  ;D

(https://memegenerator.net/img/instances/58876947.jpg)

I'm not sure if you are being serious here or not Maggie. I thought the bass was fairly prominent, perhaps a little too high in the mix. If you are having trouble hearing it, you might want to try headphones.

Other than that, I have at least one other song I've been working bass on that I might record soon.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: batwoman on October 01, 2020, 04:56:10 am
(https://memegenerator.net/img/instances/58876947.jpg)

I'm not sure if you are being serious here or not Maggie. I thought the bass was fairly prominent, perhaps a little too high in the mix. If you are having trouble hearing it, you might want to try headphones.

Other than that, I have at least one other song I've been working bass on that I might record soon.

Cheers,

Keith

Yes Keith, I have a fever and the only prescription is more bass.  ;D

My car stereo is testament to my preferences. I don't bother testing recordings there because they're always raaaather bass heavy.

I was wearing hp.

Did you make this image? I can see it's from the SNL More Cowbell video.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on October 01, 2020, 07:07:06 am
Hi Maggie,
No, I found the image on the Interwebz.

Cheers,

Keith

Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on October 01, 2020, 07:58:14 am
Markbass CMD JB Players School bass combo

It seemed an appropriate time to describe this...

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/FxB0RrxDdAJgZKfOulDr-0-I3JZLfNTO831_dNgVELVGDFb1SkQ-GyJ_LMPQWghOsoWC8AFPNxAyTXEKwiAGVptDAW5jGj-0jiXUIogAx0AvDdvUvSvYqU5NYoAmcUzv_inUH9rEJS0=w2400)

This is my bass amp. It was part of the package of equipment I bought from my friend Anita and it was one of the things that, along with the bass, first interested me when she mentioned she was having a clear out.

And it is totally ridiculous!

It's big, it's quite heavy, it's loud, and it's covered in carpet (well, a sort of thin, carpet-like material). It is a large cube that's big enough to sit on and which has the controls on the top. It's far too loud for home use: I can barely get the master volume knob past 1 before it starts rattling the walls and getting complaints from the family, and it doesn't have a headphone socket.

I don't use it that much (usually when the family are out) but when I do I love it. It has a great, full and punchy tone even at low volume.

When I first started playing bass, I wasn't sure I would enjoy it so, along with my tatty £40 second-hand bass, I got a cheap 25W practice amp which was OK at the time, but not that great.

By the time Anita contacted me about selling her gear, I was thinking about getting a better amp anyway. My first concern with the Markbass was that it was far too big, and I didn't have anywhere to put it. But I thought about it and moved a few things around, and now it sits in the corner next to my coffee table, which would otherwise be a bit of a dead space.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/zcZN6sopI7niqTSVrc0huLP8hGssiF8JUnZJOf903OTxy8XSh6PFO8ck5rTreVhQMHYJsUZw1Cuel7NNoTeAT_rse8ky4rwG-yQtC6h445xBB8A3l3pPjsyvCpxrMBh2aLvlHAK_kGY=w2400)

It's a 250W amp with a 15in speaker, so it can get pretty low and loud.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on October 01, 2020, 09:14:54 am
Sounds like a beast, Keith. Can imagine how much fun it must be to turn that up.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: glpguitar on October 06, 2020, 09:03:00 pm
I still cannot believe how much equipment was in Anita's trunk 8). It really does sound like a movie scene where some shady business happens in the parking lot at midnight. If you want the true experience of this big bass amp, try some modern metal drop tunings. You'll definitelly feel it roar. Might not be audible but you will feel it haha.

Regarding MixBus32C. As a loyal user of Cubase (the only DAW I really use) who has an "analogue" template set-up with all the routing and only using channel strip for early stage mixing, I will not change at any point soon but I do have a question because I really like the concept of Mixbus.

Have you ever used a DAW controller (or have you made one based on Mackie protocol - you're the tech guy so would not be surprised you already made something on your own) to mix something. Since it emulates the mixing on the console, you don't even need to create your own template to do that. Would be curious to read someone's change of workflow or if someone would completely switch to "analogue" mixing (okay, some additional plugins that can't really be controlled with knobs or faders are exception here).

I have been playing around with a microprocessor, few pots, faders and mackie controls to make one on my own but my Cubase tempalte still needs a fair use of mouse and keyboard, so this is still in early stages but would be curious to hear if you've tried anything with Mixbus.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on October 06, 2020, 11:19:36 pm
I still cannot believe how much equipment was in Anita's trunk 8). It really does sound like a movie scene where some shady business happens in the parking lot at midnight. If you want the true experience of this big bass amp, try some modern metal drop tunings. You'll definitelly feel it roar. Might not be audible but you will feel it haha.

At some point I may try this.

Quote
Regarding MixBus32C. As a loyal user of Cubase (the only DAW I really use) who has an "analogue" template set-up with all the routing and only using channel strip for early stage mixing, I will not change at any point soon but I do have a question because I really like the concept of Mixbus.

Have you ever used a DAW controller (or have you made one based on Mackie protocol - you're the tech guy so would not be surprised you already made something on your own) to mix something.

Yes.

As I said, Mixbus is based on Ardour.

Several years ago I had a Roland V-Studio 20 audio interface which included a DAW control surface:
(https://static.roland.com/assets/images/products/main/vs-20_top_main.jpg)
(I actually still have it somewhere).

It didn't work on Linux so I contributed a kernel patch and an Ardour control surface definition:

http://majiksramblings.blogspot.com/2014/01/roland-v-studio-20-with-linux.html
https://discourse.ardour.org/t/roland-v-studio-20/86899

That was back with Ardour v3 (it's now v6) and that definition became one of the standard ones included with Ardour (and the patch was part of the Linux kernel for a couple of years until someone overhauled the driver code).

I used the VS-20 for quite a while, and I would use the faders and transport controls on the it when I was using Ardour. Those definitions were carried through to Mixbus. Those controls, by the way, were based on MIDI.

Since then I've messed with a few controllers including a Korg NanoKontrol (which is a standard template  in Ardour and Mixbus) and TouchOSC and similar based tablet apps, which use the OSC control protocol. A while back I was toying with the idea of getting a BCF2000 which, apparently, can work quite well with Ardour and Mixbus. More recently I'm tempted with the X-Touch which works well with Mixbus and Ardour, and would also work well with the Behringer XR-18 mixer I have.





I also have an Akai MPK Mini which has some MIDI control knobs on it, which I should be able to use.

I've not actually built my own, but it would be relatively easy to do something with Mackie,  standard MIDI, or OSC. Ardour/Mxbus have quite a good way to define MIDI mapping into control surfaces, so if you have a control surface, the chances are you can build a template for it.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on October 06, 2020, 11:28:46 pm
I just fired up Mixbus and checked. My V-Studio 20 template is still there :D

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/_OXCarwwsGztW6WDsgXt-CYVOFz-Y7ii08L348-yI28Lba0l2WZ2mU63fUw5-ncN3ur3VO09dfdDkgd0yaNC2V3cnXqpwazP9xR5lB6R1jIXmUI90n67-fU4jPLN1wWRHZu0qh2WL_Q=w2400)

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: glpguitar on October 07, 2020, 12:27:29 am
Thank you for the in-depth reply, also great that they put your template in :D! Especially that Paul Davis approved it must've felt good.

I was playing with the idea of X-Touch but what I really dislike about it (and any other DAW controller on the market - at least in the range of up to 1000 €/£/$) is the fact that NOBODY provides 2 channel strips. I just want to have two tracks selected and all eq/dynamics knobs so if something is fighting in the mix, I can find the sweet spot without doing it one at a time with a mouse. That's also the reason why I started to play with my own design.

I also found this guy making them:




And the mix looks actually quite smooth but I am still waiting that somebody out there makes one with two "channel strips". Or am I really going to have to build one on my own.

Sorry if this went too off-topic. Will stop rambling now.

Keep us updated how cranking this bass amp goes 8)!
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on October 07, 2020, 09:06:13 am
No, that's fine. It's an interesting, and logical, requirement. It's a shame the XTouch (or similar) don't have more physical knobs per channel strip.

This nice thing about Ardour (and, thus, Mixbus) is it is very flexible with control assignments (I've not used Reaper or others to compare) and the nice thing about Mixbus is the built-in EQ and bus assignment section which is just like a real, physical console.

Most DAWs (including Ardour) don't have this on the basis that you can, nominally, achieve the same thing with EQ plugins and by configuring busses and send routing. This approach is also more flexible (although there also nothing stopping you doing that with Mixbus if you want to).

Conversely, the big advantage for Mixbus on the control side is that you can easily map the EQ and sends to a control surface because they are a standard and constant part of the strip. I'm sure it's possible to map control surface knobs and sliders to an EQ plugin's parameters but I suspect it would be both complex and prone to failing in all sorts of ways. Practically speaking it may be something you have to manually configure at the start of every session.

If you do DIY something, I wold suggest you consider OSC as the control option. Ardour and Mixbus both have extensive OSC support, and I believe Reaper does too. The Ardour manual section on OSC (https://manual.ardour.org/using-control-surfaces/controlling-ardour-with-osc/) might be worth a look at.

I'll let you know if I try cranking some drop-tuned bass out, although it may have to wait for the family to go out.

By the way, how's the Tascam going?

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: glpguitar on October 07, 2020, 12:22:18 pm
Thank you for sharing your thoughts + Ardour's user manual is written very clearly. If I manage to move on from theoretical design to something that will actually work, I'll start a new thread.

Re-Tascam: This device is insanely good. Just the pure fact that it's pretty much plug&play with a backing track playlist, increased the productivity levels by a 1000. So thank you for sending it over!
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: J.W.C. on October 08, 2020, 12:30:45 am
Interesting stuff.

I've been using the knobs on my Akai MPK mini with my DAW (Bitwig running on Linux), but I haven't gone any farther than that. I can see the appeal of a more feature rich controller with sliders and such.

Bitwig controller scripts/extensions are written in languages that will compile with the JDK (so Java, Kotlin, Clojure, Scala, Javascript, etc). Scripts already existed for my controller, so I haven't delved into that, though.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on October 08, 2020, 05:32:14 am
This is beginning to sound like some of the coffee conversations with some mates at work, who are still into the technical side of technology (unlike myself who hasn't developed in years, other than some enhancing the odd Excel macro).
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on October 16, 2020, 06:22:45 pm
Positive Grid Spark 40

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/ZCke9_8Gf4pyfOScVBgOD9Fc-NdmPNxlfocMNZCEyAND5xrh1fh4v4yz-0YpaRTjXJgOsFp-LvyKrJIzOQ5iGnl1_51fYHCssaFrIxIE7JrnVu6cUYsrl15OID02kaFWPJW-YkYmZgA=w2400)

So I got one of these things. I ordered it back in March when they first started advertising them as it looked quite good and I thought it would be useful as a portable practice amp. I didn't actually get it delivered until mid September.

It's OK, but I'm not overly impressed. The sounds you can get from it are pretty good quality, and it supports bass and acoustic guitar as well, which is a bonus. I think it's a bit bass heavy on the guitar sounds but, conversely, when you use it with bass guitar the small speakers seem to struggle quite a bit. Acoustic guitar through it sounds very good to my ears.

The amp models are pretty good, but there's limited options on the effects and no ability to alter the chain which is stuck at:

noise gate -> drive -> amp -> modulation -> delay -> reverb

That's a good thing in some respects, as there's less to have to mess with, but it does feel a bit limiting compared with other options. There's no specific speaker cab emulation that is selectable/tweakable.

Mains hum is a BIG issue for some people because the power supply they ship it with is ungrounded. Replacing it with a grounded PSU fixes it, but they should have shipped it with one to start with. I have a bit of hum, especially when connected to a laptop via USB. Unplugging the laptop PSU helps a bit. I've been meaning to dig a grounded PSU out of my garage to try it.

The big hype around this amp seems to be the software. I should point out this is all app based and actually nothing to do with the amp itself (other than that it only works with the Spark).

The software basically allows you to stream backing tracks from YouTube, Apple Music or Spotify to the amp and play along with them. I can do that with any bluetooth enabled amp (or, in fact, a non BT enabled amp and a nearby Bluetooth speaker or a £20 Bluetooth audio streamer like the Blackstar Tone Link). Even the metronome is basically part of the app, streamed to the speaker via bluetooth.

Where the Spark software is different is that the app has the ability to analyse songs from Youtube, Apple Music, or Spotify, and put up a chord chart for it. That's fairly clever. Personally I don't find it that useful (especially as many Youtube backing tracks already print up chord charts) and it's not particularly accurate with more complex chords.

The other thing it does is the "Smart Jam" which lets you pick a drummer and play along. The clever(ish) part is that the app will listen to a chord sequence you strum and will then build a simple backing track for it. In that respect it's similar to the Digitech Trio. However, the Trio has more drum options, variations, more control over the resulting track and is generally much better in every respect.

Personally I found it a bit limited and uninspiring.. Hopefully they will update the app to improve on this. But, as I said, it's all app based so I could forsee other vendors launching their own app which did something similar.

You can download tones that other people have created from a cloud based service. But the interface for this is dreadful, and there are hundreds of the same patch polluting the catalog, where new users have accidentally uploaded the factory patches to the cloud. There's also lots of similarly named patches. I hope they can improve on this substantially.

You can use it as a USB recording interface. It is supposed to be stereo, but this only seems to work on Windows computers with their special drivers. For me it just come out as mono. That's not really an issue for me as if I was recording I would apply stereo panning in my DAW. And I don't think there are any onboard effects which are specifically stereo anyway. The biggest issue with USB recording is the mains hum.

Physically it's pretty small, but quite heavy even though the power supply is separate. The carrying strap is quite nicely arranged but, at the same time it seems a bit basic.

I got the package with the case. The case hasn't arrived yet.

I do use this a fair bit at the moment because it's a novelty, and I'm trying to get to know it. I mostly use it on bass as I can run it at a manageable volume, unlike my Markbass amp. I've used it with my electrics and my acoustic a bit as well, although I'm tending back towards my other amps for electric. The main reason I'm using is, frankly, convenience because it's currently located where I play guitar the most, and because it supports Bluetooth, so I can stream music or audio from other apps (like Loopz, JG Time Trainer, Music Speed Changer, Youtube, etc.) to it.

At this point I'm really not using most of the app based facilities. I have better music players including the Youtube app itself.

Would I recommend it? Yes and no. For the price it's a fairly good deal as a practice and the quality of the tones and the versatility are pretty good for a package that size. I think they have messed up on the power supply. Some users, who don't have other tools, might find the app facilities to be useful. I didn't, and I found the user interface to be clunky in some places and dreadful in others. Things like the app not working in Landscape mode on an Android tablet are annoying.

Does it live up to the hype on Youtube: absolutely not!

I'll probably hang onto this amp for now, as I am using it and it does suit me as a bass practice amp. But I wouldn't be surprised if I sell it on at some point.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on October 17, 2020, 05:16:19 am
Tip of the hat, Keith, for the quality of the reviews you write. Always an enjoyable, thoughtful read even if I have no specific take-away in terms of the item being reviewed.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on October 17, 2020, 11:41:49 am
Thanks David.
My Road Case posts weren't specifically meant as reviews, but more about stories and my relationship with the kit. But, in this case, you are correct in that my last post is really more of a review.

This is partly because there really isn't much story behind it (other than the length of the time it has taken Positive Grid to fulfill orders, which is public knowledge).

But the other reason is his product has been the subject of a very significant amount of hype over the last year, through (mostly sponsored) video reviews.

IMO it's not that "amazing" or revolutionary, and anyone who buys one thinking it is is likely to be disappointed.

One of the things that I wanted to get across is that the amp itself doesn't actually do that much: it's a decent portable practice amp with 4 presets, the ability to dial in sounds easily on the top panel, pretty good sound quality and it gets fairly loud (perhaps enough for a quiet rehearsal session), and can be used as a Bluetooth speaker (it also has an onboard tuner, although that is bordering on useless).

In that respect it should be compared to the Yamaha THR series, the Vox Adio, and the Boss Katana Air. And for the price, it stands up very well against those other devices. It could, perhaps, also be compared with the Line 6 Amplifi range. On that basis, for the cost, it is definitely a great option if you don't already have something similar.

As for all the hyped capabilities which are in the app, as you can tell I was not that impressed.

Maybe that's because of the hype, or maybe because I'm familiar apps which ship with other amps (like the Line 6 Amplifi) which, IMO, provide a much better cloud-based tone library and music player experience. Maybe it's because I'm familiar with other "smart jam" systems like the Trio and Band Creator on the iPad which can work with any amp and and which work really well compared with the Spark app which is a bit... meh.

The way I look at it is this: if Positive Grid launched these capabilities as an app on the App Store/Play Store which anyone could use on any Bluetooth amp/speaker (and there is no technical reason why they couldn't as, aside from the patch editing, the app only uses the Spark amp as a Bluetooth speaker) what sort of reception would it get? Personally, I think it would get a fair number of one and two star reviews.

Mind you, the Trio costs almost as much as the Spark itself, so if you treat the app-based tools as a nice-to-have freebie that comes with a decent practice amp, then you can't go far wrong.

If you already have an amp which you like the sounds on, and a iPad with some sort of Bluetooth speaker, I would save your money and get a much better experience by splashing out $7.99 for the Band Creator App (https://apps.apple.com/us/app/band-creator-drum-machine/id1040300295), or look at a Trio+ pedal.

If you are looking for a low-cost, decent sounding portable practice amp, then the Spark is a contender.

LOL, so my response has turned into an extended review. Hopefully this is helpful for anyone considering one of these amps.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on November 06, 2020, 04:11:32 pm
Boss Katana 100 mkI

I've been a bit tied up with work and personal life stuff recently, and haven't spend that much time on the forum. I thought it was long overdue to update this thread with some of my other gear.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/vxZBQVpZi1PF23UHKvHgI3Zlw-mUEqv1XIpGVWLlZqkFUX4ckDvqbF3dynFkso2MC7n0yfWuBhlPC3l_LiZrm_M6wqUDOVQxEBhnU_LnmvNCx6unH9q31voEpgsXSvbaDOBhdonud7o=w2400)

I bought this a few years ago to put in my home office so I could do some more practice more during the day.

I work from home most of the time and the music room where I normally keep my guitars isn't that far away, but I like to keep a guitar near at hand so I can pick it up and strum or noodle when I'm on a long conference call, or when I need a break. It's also good to have something I can turn up loud without disturbing the family too much, and the music room is right next to the living room, so I can't do that there.

I part exchanged a bunch of older kit at Andertons (about a 45 minute drive from me) to get the Katana. I chose the 100 model because it had an effects loop and I wanted to experiment with looping, partly as I had a Boss RC-3 looper already and I wanted to use that for my own loops, as well as for backing tracks and the onboard drum beats. I got the GC-FC footswitch with it.

I have used this a lot in the past but, more recently, I'm not used it as much, mainly because I've not been in the country much over the last year. Since I've been back in the UK, I've actually not been using my office much, and have been working from the sofa in the music room.

The reason for that is I got a new laptop before I wet to Singapore, and that is now very nicely set up for work stuff as well as for music. The PC in my office was getting old and slow and needed replacing. I have now replaced it, but it's not really set up as I would like it yet, and it's going to take a while to do so. I also have a plan to finish some rewiring and other work in the office which I started last year, but which then got put on hold when I got the project in Tokyo. So, at the moment, it's become habit for me to work from my laptop on the sofa.

Also, there was some talk of me continuing on some projects in Tokyo or Singapore although, at least for the moment, that's likely to be working remotely from the UK.

A while ago I lent the Katana to a friend who is a professional musician, and he has used it with his band when his normal Marshall valve amp stopped working and was in for repair. He really liked it and was seriously considering getting one for some gigs as it was so much lighter than his 100W Marshall.

I am actually considering whether I need this amp any more. I did love the onboard effects and playing with the patches, and it sounds great when set up properly, even at low volumes. But I do have too many amps and, frankly, although it's far simpler to use than most modelling amps I've seem, in practice I find myself only using a handful of tones and the effort to mess around with tone editing and level matching to build a patch set is something I find myself less and less interested in. It was also a bit far away from my PC to conveniently connect it for patch editing using the Boss Tone Studio.

So I'm considering "re-homing" this and moving one of my other "simpler" amps into the office.

I'll probably hold onto it for a while yet, and give it some more thought when I start using the office again regularly. I may swap some stuff around and see how I get on.

Also, I'm working with a Linux kernel developer on trying to squash a bug in one of the Linux sound drivers, and the Katana is a useful device for testing against.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: close2u on November 06, 2020, 05:10:31 pm
... I'm working with a Linux kernel developer on trying to squash a bug in one of the Linux sound drivers

What a sentence to finish your post with.
That did make me smile.
:)
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on November 07, 2020, 07:32:35 am
Thanks for another post, Keith.

All I can say now, is that I do appreciate the effort you go to in each of these write-ups. The result is an informative and easy-to-read chapter in your musical story time after time.

Like Richard, I took a step back when I read the closing comment, dropped so matter-of-fact.

Hope between the bug squashing, and the rest of life, you find a little time to keep playing your bass and/or guitars.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on November 07, 2020, 09:38:23 pm
@close2u @DavidP Thanks for your messages. Sorry if the final sentence was a bit of a non sequitur. I was waiting for a kernel compile with a new patch to finish whilst I was writing it, and as there had been a discussion previously on the thread about similar things, I thought it was OK to post.

I'm trying to find time to spend on guitar and would like to record something else soon, but I've been pretty busy and keep getting distracted bu things, but when the lead developer for ALSA wants to help you, that's too good an opportunity to miss.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: glpguitar on November 07, 2020, 10:59:41 pm
Again, an enjoyable insight into your pieces of musical gear you have. I was expecting to be part of this big parking lot exchange (in my head, I still see this as a big mafia movie scene) with your friend but I will take the Andertons exchange too 8).

I work from home most of the time and the music room where I normally keep my guitars isn't that far away, but I like to keep a guitar near at hand so I can pick it up and strum or noodle when I'm on a long conference call, or when I need a break.
Does noodling help you focus on the conference calls or can you just multitask so effectively? Sometimes I try to do the same but then I just forget about the call and fully move my attention to guitar. The others on the call weren't so happy about it :(.

but when the lead developer for ALSA wants to help you, that's too good an opportunity to miss.
That's just amazing!
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on November 07, 2020, 11:28:11 pm
Again, an enjoyable insight into your pieces of musical gear you have. I was expecting to be part of this big parking lot exchange (in my head, I still see this as a big mafia movie scene) with your friend but I will take the Andertons exchange too 8).

That's a fun scene. In fact it was a pleasant day out with a nice chat, a light lunch, and loading the car up.

Quote
Does noodling help you focus on the conference calls or can you just multitask so effectively? Sometimes I try to do the same but then I just forget about the call and fully move my attention to guitar. The others on the call weren't so happy about it :(.

I can't do it if I have to talk, and if I really have to focus on something I will stop, but a lot of the time I'm in long calls where I only have to pay attention.

I find (or have found, since my time in Singapore, stuck in my apartment doing endless Zoom calls with my laptop on top of the microwave oven) that I can actually almost mindlessly do certain exercises and practice certain songs, if I know them reasonably well. I think it helps to cement those exercises/songs.

Part of it is it helps me to do them without looking at the fretboard, as I'm generally having to watch the screen most of the time, or at least look like I am from the camera.

I think it was a lesson in the fingerstyle module where Justin suggested practicing the patterns whilst doing something else, like watching TV. The idea is to take your mind away from thinking about doing the patterns and watching your fingers, and that tends to make it more automatic. Initially I remembered that and started trying to do some of those patterns whilst on calls, but then moved onto doing other things.

Quote
That's just amazing!

Yes, I was pretty pleased. It has taken up a lot of time though. I've lost count of how many kernel module recompiles/reboots I've done today.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: batwoman on November 08, 2020, 12:04:53 am
I can't do it if I have to talk, and if I really have to focus on something I will stop, but a lot of the time I'm in long calls where I only have to pay attention.

I find (or have found, since my time in Singapore, stuck in my apartment doing endless Zoom calls with my laptop on top of the microwave oven) that I can actually almost mindlessly do certain exercises and practice certain songs, if I know them reasonably well. I think it helps to cement those exercises/songs.

Part of it is it helps me to do them without looking at the fretboard, as I'm generally having to watch the screen most of the time, or at least look like I am from the camera.

I think it was a lesson in the fingerstyle module where Justin suggested practicing the patterns whilst doing something else, like watching TV. The idea is to take your mind away from thinking about doing the patterns and watching your fingers, and that tends to make it more automatic. Initially I remembered that and started trying to do some of those patterns whilst on calls, but then moved onto doing other things.
Keith

This info is a gem Keith. This makes me laugh "... as I'm generally having to watch the screen most of the time, or at least look like I am from the camera." I'm still rather mind boggled that you can manage a conference call and practice and keep your work face on all at the same time.

The strategy of watching TV while practicing is a good one, I'm going to use that in an effort to break a fretful  >:(  habit I've developed. The other thing I'm doing to break the habit is putting a mic in front of me so I get singing and mic technique practice. The rule is I'm not allowed to look at the fret at all, and regardless of how it sounds I have to keep singing and playing. Perhaps not useful for you when you're on a conference call  ;D

Sorry if the final sentence was a bit of a non sequitur. I was waiting for a kernel compile with a new patch to finish whilst I was writing it, and as there had been a discussion previously on the thread about similar things, I thought it was OK to post.

I'm trying to find time to spend on guitar and would like to record something else soon, but I've been pretty busy and keep getting distracted by things, but when the lead developer for ALSA wants to help you, that's too good an opportunity to miss.

Cheers,

Keith

I found your comment totally logical and love that you've had such a great offer of help.

This is such a juicy thread Keith, thankyou.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on November 08, 2020, 05:13:27 am
Sorry if the final sentence was a bit of a non sequitur. I was waiting for a kernel compile with a new patch to finish whilst I was writing it, and as there had been a discussion previously on the thread about similar things, I thought it was OK to post.

Sorry from my side if my comment gave rise to thoughts to apologise, Keith.  Was quite OK to post. Was my clumsy way of expressing awe and admiration.  Maybe I should just have gone with "WOW Respect High Five" As you say what an opportunity.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on November 08, 2020, 05:18:09 am
I have tried that watching TV ... tennis worked well for me when I still had the satellite service with international sports coverage ... and practising picking. Works well.

But I reckon if I tried that in a virtual meeting I would soon drift from meeting matters to guitar ... too many meetings are just not that engaging.

Reminds me of the old days when I used to go to gym and use an exercise bike.  If started to enjoy the music or whatever sport was on the TV in front of the bikes then all of a sudden I'd realise my cadence had dropped off the pace significantly  ;D
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: close2u on November 08, 2020, 09:02:06 am
@close2u @DavidP Thanks for your messages. Sorry if the final sentence was a bit of a non sequitur....

No apology Keith, please.
 :)
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on November 23, 2020, 11:31:42 am
Hope between the bug squashing, and the rest of life, you find a little time to keep playing your bass and/or guitars.

Well, as it turns out, over the last 3 weeks I've been extremely busy with work stuff, but also working with Takashi-san (the developer) on triaging, debugging and testing the particular bug fixes and some related issues. So I've actually found very little time to pick up either the guitar or the bass.

The good news is we successfully tested the code over the weekend across a number of devices, including some small code tweaks I contributed based on the testing and, this morning, Takashi-san posted a whole bunch of patches onto alsa-devel (https://mailman.alsa-project.org/pipermail/alsa-devel/2020-November/177402.html) (the mailing list for ALSA development). So, for now, I have finished with that.

I now hope to get some time for guitar and bass.

Cheers,

Keith

For those of you who are interested in such things, ALSA is "Advanced Linux Sound Architecture" and is the sound driver subsystem for Linux and Android. It's sort of the Linux equivalent of ASIO on Windows.

The bug I was working on were some long-standing issues with "implicit feedback" which, roughly speaking, is a mechanism used by some USB audio interfaces to synchronize the rate at which audio samples are transferred between the computer and the audio interface. The bug was preventing some specific audio interfaces from working reliably or, in some cases, from working at all.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on November 23, 2020, 11:59:05 am
Good job ... sounds well above my play-grade, Keith.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on November 23, 2020, 12:22:09 pm
Back to the music gear...

Yamaha THR10ii Wireless

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/LDiC-w6qMjTDjP4LCRpxxeOCCCxRz6TZZ12dfUUGgW3JQKzhm5VMr-DoB6sKF5ysG2fOSDmuY3fEJT-jBp_fU1OCAI4JBbbrgGfdr4EVhL9x2AnAGhoSjW5F0PX2slD5_T5tIt7LGJQ=w2400)

I picked this up in a small music store "Sound Alchemy" in Singapore whilst I was over there. In Singapore, the main place to go for musical instruments is the basement floor of Peninsula Shopping Centre which is near to St. Andrews Cathedral.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/l2i0uq3yM_I_0wcqT7P95UJpCeIaAUhCnJAscPhpU3aPed1izcbAwM5m1h4kOEf5jgP4h3ycbbUYBUaYovUQ-05nJ4nOigau3SHEUGkJNugzG0m26mUGnCdMoqINQ8EyUEbItUOGhoc=w2400)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/7bWBN5v4zFKnHzcT9aOxVA68_KDToikg8_g5UxwyeRohUD2egSdoawZnWCfgyqCgnz9bYaQVxTxCVtvuZ4FrgyYaFf0asherckFbsKdH60dBK_fMVKv2KvfUk-GGTey1PZbMfhfqGNM=w2400)

As an aside: I was hoping to get to ring the bells at St. Andrews whilst I was there. St. Andrews is famous in bell-ringing circles for being one of the few working bell towers in this part of the world, and because it very recently had a brand-new set of bells installed which, by many accounts, sound and feel great. Unfortunately Coviid happened, and bell-ringing was one of the first casualties of the restrictions.

I had been considering getting one of these amps previously when I was in Tokyo and was visiting guitar stores in Ochanomizu and Shinjuku but, at the time, none of the stores had the new mkII model.

It's a fairly basic practice amp, but it also works fantastically as a Bluetooth speaker and, in both modes, it was a bit of a lifesaver (or, at least, sanity saver) whilst I was stuck in my small apartment in Singapore. It was perfect for that environment because it's possible to use at low volumes or with headphones and it can play backing tracks from a phone or PC.

It doesn't have the biggest selection of amp models in the world, but that suits me: personally I just want to dial in a quick and appropriate sound for the thing I'm playing. I don't really care that much if it's an accurate representation of a specific amp.

I've been through the stage of systems that model dozens of well-known amps and of trying to match them to the song I'm learning and I've realized that is a bit of a fools errand. Unless you are specifically trying to re-create a "sound-alike" recording, there really isn't much point in trying to match the tone on a given track. Even the artists themselves generally don't do that. IMO if (as a learner) you are always obsessing about the nuances of an amp model, then you are focusing your mental energy on the wrong thing. Such things are a distraction from learning and playing the guitar.

Of course you want to have appropriate tones and, as a general rule, the THR10II has them. It supports acoustic, electric, and bass guitars as well as a "clean" setting that can be used with keyboards or other instruments. For electric guitars it has clean, crunch, lead, high-gain and "special" (extra high-gain).

The previous THR models came in different physical versions with the "classic" models, but a separate "boutique" and "modern" models sold separately. The THR mkII has all of these combined into a single unit, so for each of the settings you have a choice of amp variants. On the THR30 you can select between these variants on the top panel. On the THR5 and THR10 you have to use the app. The app also lets you tune the tone by setting the amp parameters and the cabinet modelling used, as well as giving you finer control over the effects parameters.

The audio from the THR10II is pretty good for its size. You won't be gigging or even rehearsing with this thing any time soon, but it's perfect for bedroom practice. It lacks a little on the lower bass frequencies, especially when using it with a bass, but it's still good for practice purpose and the sound is always well balanced.

Compared to the Spark 40 amp, I think overall the THR is better. The Spark has better lower bass reproduction (probably due to it's bigger physical size) but always sounds a bit unbalanced and, sometimes, the bass can sound a bit "processed".

The construction of the THR series is rock solid, and it also looks great too with it's looks suiting something which is as much a Bluetooth speaker as a guitar amp. It wouldn't look out of place on the side in most living rooms. When powered on the THR has a nice amber "tube" glow, thanks to a couple of internal LEDs. When I returned from Singapore, I carried this thing as hand luggage with no problems.

I got the wireless version as I see opportunities to use this in the garden in the future. In fact I briefly used it when we had a fire-pit evening a couple of months ago. The battery seems to last for 5 hours or so in use.

It can also support a Line 6 wireless transmitter (at additional cost). This plugs into the top and charges from the THR, so when you want to use it you just unplug it from the THR and plug it into your guitar. I didn't have this in SG, but I picked up one recently in the UK. It's a bit of a gimmick in some respects, but there's situations where I can see it being quite useful, like the garden situation where passing a guitar around people sitting around a fire-pit could be tricky when there's a cable involved. Also, because the amp is physically quite small, with the cable there's always the danger of accidentally pulling the unit over, which wouldn't be good if it's on a high shelf.

I'm not using this amp that much at the moment because I don't need to but I can see myself using it quite a bit on occasions in the future, whether that is in the garden, going to friends or family (when we are allowed) or future business travel.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on November 23, 2020, 03:00:35 pm
And another enjoyable read, Keith. You could write for a guitar magazine, given your knowledge and turn-of-phrase.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on November 23, 2020, 03:18:22 pm
Thanks David, that's very kind of you to say.

I actually think most guitar magazines wouldn't like some of my opinions. Guitar mags are, traditionally, funded by advertisers who get a bit annoyed if they get reviews they don't like, so most reviewers tend to tread very lightly when big advertisers products are involved.

I'm catching up with a lot of things at the moment. Hopefully I will get the time to listen to some of the latest performances on the forum, as there look to have been some interesting ones recently.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: batwoman on November 24, 2020, 01:09:06 am
This is a fascinating thread. Thankyou Keith. Hope you can free up some time to play soon.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on November 24, 2020, 06:20:47 am
Thanks David, that's very kind of you to say.

I actually think most guitar magazines wouldn't like some of my opinions. Guitar mags are, traditionally, funded by advertisers who get a bit annoyed if they get reviews they don't like, so most reviewers tend to tread very lightly when big advertisers products are involved.

I'm catching up with a lot of things at the moment. Hopefully I will get the time to listen to some of the latest performances on the forum, as there look to have been some interesting ones recently.

Cheers,

Keith

As the saying goes ... "follow the money"  ::)

Lots to listen to, Keith, and all special and worth a look and listen but tough to catch up when you've been away a while ... "eat the elephant one bite at a time"  ;D
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Twin Six on November 24, 2020, 04:15:37 pm
I had been considering getting one of these amps previously when I was in Tokyo and was visiting guitar stores in Ochanomizu and Shinjuku but, at the time, none of the stores had the new mkII model.

I lived in Tokyo for many years working as a translator, though I haunted camera shops rather than music stores. Nice to know there's a fellow Asia hand on the forum.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on November 24, 2020, 04:27:00 pm
I lived in Tokyo for many years working as a translator, though I haunted camera shops rather than music stores. Nice to know there's a fellow Asia hand on the forum.

I was only there for just over 5 months, and my Japanese barely got beyond greetings and some basic phrases. It's an amazing place though, and I wish I had more time to explore both Tokyo and the rest of Japan.

I did a fair bit of looking around camera stores, mainly in Shinjuku. Not that I'm particularly into cameras, but it's quite an experience. I actually bought my 360 camera from Yodobashi Camera in Shinjuku.

Similarly, I'm not into anime of the collectables/figurines thing, but I explored many of the streets and shops in Akihabara just for the sheer "WTF!" experience. The leaflet I picked up in one of the tamer stores there sums up that area quite well:

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/yVjMY3OOPAH8HdNuYZ1K9VE0UNP39xzjyJQM6qiVfQynS2tZBI4b1pjPa91vLS-Ln8Qb4DBkL1Lnz5DaWaRjz2Drnknxr688S_0vVTihov7SQlNp8S0Dzng9q9R7a73gyk-MBeyPYWA=w2400)

Cheers,

Keith

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Twin Six on November 29, 2020, 04:38:58 am
Similarly, I'm not into anime of the collectables/figurines thing, but I explored many of the streets and shops in Akihabara just for the sheer "WTF!" experience. The leaflet I picked up in one of the tamer stores there sums up that area quite well:

Cheers,

Keith

My wife (who's English) had an apartment just a short walk from Akihabara, so we ended up spending a fair amount of time there, and had plenty of chances to observe the various bizarre subcultures that gravitate there.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on November 29, 2020, 02:58:34 pm
My wife (who's English) had an apartment just a short walk from Akihabara, so we ended up spending a fair amount of time there, and had plenty of chances to observe the various bizarre subcultures that gravitate there.

I actually wasn't living far from Akihabara myself: I had a nice little apartment in Kudanshita, Chiyoda City, very close to Kitanomaru Park and the Yasakuni shrine. There wasn't much going on there, but that suited me, and it was well connected for travel to other places; Tokyo Dome, Iidabashi, and Tokyo Station were all easily walk-able, and I could get to Shinjuku, Shibuya or Futako Tamagawa (where I was working) quite easily. I particularly liked walking up to Iidabashi where there was some lovely bars and izakayas, including a friendly nihonshu bar:

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/AiQaWjKsZG7R7AXCOL5CX4QLe6eDQn61jnEWXtxktNpYwNCl0A8pHfMXVUxYDbrjN9bNYIsAdiJ0tCsmPpN9GwMqlkPQ-4BVPW7UvqUO1bMCLKaYa-q4lq85pXDGMCXFmxaWVBmv9gQ=w2400)

When I first got there the Rugby World Cup was on, and accommodation was scarce. I ended up spending 5 weeks in a small hotel room in Akasaka until my apartment was available. The hotel room had no cupboards or floor space, and I ended up sleeping with my suitcase and piles of clothes on the bed next to me, which wasn't much fun. It was a fun area though, and I found some great little bars and eateries, including a pretty awesome sushi place right next to the hotel.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/O4bQ92aavjtCcxs1rTPcVFGSOnR90ki0bPHpvbawV4sr22FTVFU-NWq1G98b5q51SwVRqaUjiiDPmxS9cHqGUQ-c4kh1wmNRT19CPRgRDEJYLewppt07fdBoHmOTgMPzLG7eImK7meM=w2400)

I have to say, spending time in Tokyo was an amazing experience, despite being away from my family for an extended period. I hope to be able to spend some time there again in the future.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on November 29, 2020, 03:20:09 pm
Blackstar Fly 3 Bass

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/jFqWlTHL2udP7eXt3v8TDD7OSL60gjIVhSurop4q3mV-O0IebDN26H6dCkMtin2_z4i9M0AXubB3gb6jR6jphl9vaaSLd55pJW5ZWimwrEiEy7Ivre4rhZvKAYlRM4dkrp0GP8pel8s=w2400)

Back to the equipment...

I picked this up a few years ago as we were going to a festival called "Tribe Of Doris" with some friends. This is a quirky affair held in the grounds of Stamford Hall in Leicestershire over several days in Summer.

It basically comprises a bunch of workshops in music, dance, arts and crafts as well as food and drink stands (including a rum shack), live music events, and stalls selling interesting and unusual items. The workshops include gong baths, drum circles, hand pan lessons, flamenco dance, folk and sea shanty singing, and many others. The attendees camp in the grounds and it is generally a very chilled out and reinvigorating experience.

I had recently started playing the bass, and I noticed there was a bass guitar workshop being run, so I picked up the Blackstar so I could take it, and my bass guitar, with me. It was small, battery powered, and could also be used as a stereo Bluetooth speaker so, whilst I wasn't using it for guitar, we could use it for background music. It comprises a main amp unit with an optional speaker extension to make it stereo if you want.

For such a small thing, it's really quite impressive how good it sounds. Obviously it's not going to get much above "bedroom practice" volumes, but that was all I needed. The workshop teacher, an interesting reggae musician called Reuben, was impressed with it and it worked very well for the lessons (mostly in a large tent) and for practicing back in our own tent.

Since I picked up the THR10II earlier this year, which also works with bass pretty well, I don't really need the Blackstar any more, so I will probably sell it soon. Of course, with Covid this year, ToD didn't happen as usual (although they have been doing online workshops). Hopefully it will be on next year.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on November 30, 2020, 04:23:54 am
Good Vibes Keith for another gear story.

What more can I say  8.  8)  8)
 

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: LievenDV on December 01, 2020, 08:49:42 am
Love this thread and coming back to it!
This combo international culture and guitar gear sure is a unique feature :)

Wish you the best Majik!
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Twin Six on December 10, 2020, 01:32:22 am
Thanks for sharing the photos of Tokyo. You obviously found your way to most of the more interesting parts of the city. Though I left almost 10 years ago, the only thing I've missed are the restaurants & izakaya. No matter how obscure the corner of Tokyo, there are excellent restaurants & bars where you end up meeting fascinating characters.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on December 12, 2020, 10:23:39 am
Though I left almost 10 years ago, the only thing I've missed are the restaurants & izakaya. No matter how obscure the corner of Tokyo, there are excellent restaurants & bars where you end up meeting fascinating characters.

Yes, I agree. And, what I found, is the quality of the restaurants in Tokyo seems to be almost universally high. Although the some of food may not be something us westerners would normally eat (natto and nankotsu being two things I encountered quite a bit, but never got used to).

When I was staying in Akasaka, I was trying to read (using Google Translate) the menu of a small yakitori restaurant near my hotel when an enthusiastic lady popped her head out and said "English?" and then bodily dragged me in and sat me at the bar and handed me the English menu. I present it below (don't look too hard if you are squeamish or vegetarian):

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/To5dg0qAsCR-IXlqHn5lrZyV-Fvkl--Vmlcgj9UDOz1hgvqg5OiVGPjLYK8G5tYS89xEM3CIq1BTEcdNwxId0K-pAaRiu0Vd4M-ogWVoSYGtJZF88uD3u9ll_wCZW8FWCEP4B9_ki34=w2400)

I ended up ordering mainly vegetables and a rice ball (which, by the way, were all amazing) whilst I watched the chefs prepare various wibbly-looking foods for other people.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/DSPdJFFr4QsTPQv7Za-tfuCDobRdXW2ZWViGco2U_OtbF9HxEJXeBDTPn2iUkoqGk-sC0QME9eyd-UlynCIorvQUfZ8aRG6mnFbfbseaArL2OgDK7PviF5x5qADJIdXNuI9psmBv3RY=w2400)

I ended up chatting to a young woman and her father who were sitting next to me (chatting to random, friendly strangers in restaurants became a bit of a theme) who gave me some good nihonshu recommendations and (after I had a couple) convinced me to try the tongue sashimi which was... interesting.

Good times!

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on January 22, 2021, 10:37:26 am
This isn't, strictly, guitar related, but a discussion of USB cables reminded me I had recently been tidying up and organising my vast collection of cables including USB, MIDI, XLR, DMX, and instrument cables. They are now nicely boxed and labelled in my garage.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/fT0dR9vZTgRzAmCRm6FqnYnlLpB143G7VFL65KRzcrTYd89DSBauq1XUkrvuW6Z00kuc4AvuHPkeLaxaCAY5JXNjNKfzNxC573s6NlKU8_2LtPeaUjjdRHzi-TFG2MiVAQaOcNmJPjA=w2400)

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: adi_mrok on January 22, 2021, 10:45:38 am
Honestly mate you probably have more cables in there than they had on Christmas Lights event at Blenheim Palace which I believe were controlled using DMX.

Sent from my SM-G973F using JustinGuitar Community mobile app (http://r.tapatalk.com/byo?rid=93296)

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on January 22, 2021, 01:42:51 pm
LOL I can manage with a single drawer.

Just for interest sake, how many years of collecting does that represent, Keith.

And I imagine a quite some spend over time as well  :o
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on January 22, 2021, 01:56:20 pm
Probably 20+ years, although I have also discarded a lot too. One of the big white boxes contains power supplies, some of which are easily over 20 years old.

A lot of the cables are actually more recent. Most of the LAN patch cables are related to my work. The various USB cables have been collected over many years, as were the power cables. I don't like throwing them out as you never know when you might need one, and power cables don't become obsolete. To an extent this is also true of USB cables: type A USBs are still in common use.

And then there's various stuff like the MIDI 5-pin cables which I have had for over a decade, but which are still occasionally useful (some modern kit still has this connection) and DMX cables which are more recent.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on January 22, 2021, 02:03:51 pm
Just had to google "DMX cable" ... learned something new.

I guess I was a little similar with the old video/hi-fi cables, seemed to accumulate those over the years. But never quite to the same quantities as you've done, Keith.

And of course the worst thing is needing a cable, thinking you have one and can't find it and then after extensive searching discovering that you don't have one after all.

The time to organise and label will surely payoff. Though I suspect your mind is probably better organised than mine is  ;D
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on January 22, 2021, 04:30:13 pm
Just had to google "DMX cable" ... learned something new.

Yes, I dabbled with some DMX programming a while back. A friend of mine wanted to get some new lights for his band, so I helped set him up. I got a few cheap chinese-made DMX lights for myself so I could play with it.  They are set up in my conservatory, but I've not done anything with them for a while now.

Cheers,

Keith

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: adi_mrok on January 22, 2021, 05:03:19 pm
Just had to google "DMX cable" ... learned something new.

I guess I was a little similar with the old video/hi-fi cables, seemed to accumulate those over the years. But never quite to the same quantities as you've done, Keith.

And of course the worst thing is needing a cable, thinking you have one and can't find it and then after extensive searching discovering that you don't have one after all.

The time to organise and label will surely payoff. Though I suspect your mind is probably better organised than mine is  ;D
DMX is widely used in theaters and lots of different performances, I was involved in doing M&E services for English National Ballet HQ and Wellington College Performing Arts Centre and they had loads of DMX around, quite interesting stuff. I was at Christmas lights exhibition before UK went to a full lockdown and capabilities of the system are unbelievable, see below:

https://youtu.be/2farSx2UcU8

Sent from my SM-G973F using JustinGuitar Community mobile app (http://r.tapatalk.com/byo?rid=93296)
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on January 22, 2021, 05:23:46 pm
DMX is widely used in theaters and lots of different performances, I was involved in doing M&E services for English National Ballet HQ and Wellington College Performing Arts Centre and they had loads of DMX around, quite interesting stuff. I was at Christmas lights exhibition before UK went to a full lockdown and capabilities of the system are unbelievable,

Oh yes, I've been a member of a local theatre group for the last 20 years or so and, although I didn't get involved in it myself,  I was aware of the DMX lighting setups. I've always been fascinated by stuff like moving heads and robotic gobos since I saw the original Vari-lights at bands I watched in the 80s.

When I started learning it myself, I was using a dedicated DMX desk where you had to painstakingly configure each fixture and scene, although it had some built-in sequences you could employ for moving heads.

Since then I've been using QLC+ (https://www.qlcplus.org/) quite a bit, and the level of control you have on that is quite amazing, and there's some clever stuff with people running it on multiple Raspberry Pi's and networking them with Artnet, integrating and syncing with MIDI, and more. When you see one of those homes with Xmas lighting synchronised with music, that's probably QLC+_being used.

When I was in Tokyo in Dec 2019, I got to visit some of the amazing Xmas lighting displays they have there which, I believe, are  DMX controlled. This is the one in Tokyo Midtown:





Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: adi_mrok on January 22, 2021, 05:27:10 pm
Wow truly amazing show, guess once things go back to normal I need to go show it to.my wife since she has a huge bug for Christmas related events :)

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Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: stuartw on January 22, 2021, 05:46:44 pm
Oh yes, I've been a member of a local theatre group for the last 20 years or so and, although I didn't get involved in it myself,  I was aware of the DMX lighting setups. I've always been fascinated by stuff like moving heads and robotic gobos since I saw the original Vari-lights at bands I watched in the 80s.

I believe that Genesis where the first to use vari-lights in their shows.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on January 22, 2021, 05:52:29 pm
Indeed they were. They were actually one of the early investors in Vari-lite. The story was the company developing them set up a demo in a barn at the recording studio Genesis were working in.

They came out and saw the demo and decided to invest immediately.

Cheers,

Keith

Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: JustMe123456 on January 22, 2021, 08:44:20 pm
Dmx was the greatest. I especially liked “Slipping” and “stop being greedy”
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on January 23, 2021, 05:04:24 am
Fascinating. You never know what you might stumble across over here in the JG Forum. A little bit more googling this morning to understand more of the terms being used.

Thanks guys.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on January 23, 2021, 01:57:52 pm
Regarding lighting and Genesis, this teaser popped up for their forthcoming tour that has been delayed until October. Looks like they continue to knock it out of the park with regards to stage lighting and visualisations.

https://youtu.be/5CPqRQI7Vjo

Cheers,

Keith

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: stuartw on January 24, 2021, 11:27:44 am
Regarding lighting and Genesis, this teaser popped up for their forthcoming tour that has been delayed until October. Looks like they continue to knock it out of the park with regards to stage lighting and visualisations.

https://youtu.be/5CPqRQI7Vjo

Genesis have always been a leader in lighting and visuals for shows right from their early days. Mind you saying that Floyd and Waters also put on great shows as well, and in Waters case continue to do so.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on January 24, 2021, 11:29:11 am
Yes, Pink Floyd were another band who would always present a spectacular show.

Cheers,

Keith

Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on February 25, 2021, 09:48:43 pm
I've had a bit of a pause in updating my road case, due to family matters that need to be attended to.

But one small thing happened recently. If you recall, I previously posted:

Well, as it turns out, over the last 3 weeks I've been extremely busy with work stuff, but also working with Takashi-san (the developer) on triaging, debugging and testing the particular bug fixes and some related issues.

...

The good news is we successfully tested the code over the weekend across a number of devices, including some small code tweaks I contributed based on the testing and, this morning, Takashi-san posted a whole bunch of patches onto alsa-devel (https://mailman.alsa-project.org/pipermail/alsa-devel/2020-November/177402.html) (the mailing list for ALSA development). So, for now, I have finished with that.

...

The bug I was working on were some long-standing issues with "implicit feedback" which, roughly speaking, is a mechanism used by some USB audio interfaces to synchronize the rate at which audio samples are transferred between the computer and the audio interface. The bug was preventing some specific audio interfaces from working reliably or, in some cases, from working at all.

Well, just over a week ago, Linux kernel version 5.11 was launched (https://www.zdnet.com/article/linux-5-11-is-out-with-amd-and-intel-improvements-and-linus-torvalds-is-happy/) which includes the code I was testing. This enables the use of a whole bunch of Boss devices on Linux including devices such as the Boss Katana, GT-1, GT-001, GT-100v2, BR-80, and AD-10.

If I can find the time I will do a write up on some of theses devices (the ones I have) plus some other music technology stuff I have.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on February 25, 2021, 10:27:11 pm
Roland V-Studio 20

I will start with one of the early devices that got me into testing ALSA driver patches. I have mentioned this before (https://justinguitarcommunity.com/index.php?topic=47747.msg431321#msg431321) in this thread, I picked this up cheap from the local Dawsons as it was a display model and end-of-stock. It intrigued me because it wasn't just a desktop multi-fx device, but also a control surface. I also wanted to test some recent ALSA patches.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/1iW5eLF8Niw6NMoZ7jsWZAfAjnrRK_39sxcPyzY_FuxIdet2KThXwbqdydEfZe7fQjJJ0JE-OHzvLTZEljmIPvMvTSO-s5Zn_BJxrL1zO_sxWjnLXUl0ddFVn_Ru4xGYTVz1B8uibs0=w2400)

This is quite a nice unit because it has built-in stereo mics as well as an XLR input for an external mic (with phantom power) as well as a guitar input. Despite its looks, it's not a mixer and you can only use one input at a time.

It's powered by the USB connection to the PC, which also provides the audio and MIDI interface. It has audio outputs which I used to connect to a mixer, and also a headphone socket.

The onboard guitar effects are based on (I believe) the Boss GT-10 engine which is old by current modelling standards, but is actually pretty good. The unit also has some vocal effects, including pitch correction and chorus, and some bass amp modelling. So all in all it's a pretty versatile little unit.

The sliders and buttons on top are a control surface. For those that don't know what that is, it means they are MIDI controllers which are designed to communicate with and control a DAW. So, for instance, there is a set of "transport" buttons on the front edge which can be used to trigger play, record, fast-forward, rewind, etc. on your DAW. The faders can be mapped to individual channel faders on your DAW mixing view.

The idea is it gives you dedicated hard buttons for commonly used functions on your DAW. I contributed the MIDI mapping I created to the Ardour project.

Another really nice feature at the time, that I hadn't seen on many other similar units (other than the Boss JS-8), was the ability to "re-amp". That means you can record the "dry" guitar with no effects or amp modelling into your DAW, and then replay it back to the unit via the modelling and effects. This lets you test different amp models and effects, and different settings, on the same recorded guitar (or vocal). After "re-amping" the recording, you can the record the result.

The effects, and the routing to and from the computer, were controlled using a quite nice little application that would run under Linux using WINE.
(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/yCMzSSzN8B9jV47TmNuh2a4aedrWdL_eGUBmuNCWY-oqg05Ftl_GmXDqocm11K6J_a4B1PciT5XzpPviRtwpll7W9DNRaHOfgrJigqOhdAhfe_84ODQvjFRDk0f6XfrwmnkCmZjJOOo=w2400)

You could also connect a foot switch or expression pedal.

I haven't used this device in ages but I don't see any point in getting rid of it at the moment, partly as I can't see anyone would want it these days. Support for it on Windows or Mac stopped a few years ago, so only Linux users can still use it.

Cheers,

Keith

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on February 25, 2021, 10:46:29 pm
Boss GT-001

This is, in some ways, the more modern version of the V-Studio 20 (VS-20).

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/T3u5XTin33D3EeaE7DIgWbqfKEx0FWZxh0hVQ-R-mLhi3oSV53Y8lj8ccag5OpUo0CJlxYe8PwhkfnnGMPFp9n9NwUq5obLWyPT4hqqU4aM26glvMLmNh-J2ZFuHyL3zjGe9H0bPXmg=w2400)

Like the VS-20, this is a desktop multifx/modelling unit. In this case it contains the modelling technology used in the Boss GT100v2 floor unit, which is much more modern and, until the fairly recent GT-1000 launch, was Boss's flagship modelling technology.

It has a huge range of models and effects compared to the VS-20 and, unlike the VS-20, you can create effects chains where you can put the effects in just about any order. You can also run two amp models at a time on each patch and either switch between them or blend them together. You can also have different effects in each chain.

It's controlled using a version of Boss Tone Studio which will be familiar to anyone who has a Boss Katana:

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/W5LKaCc-Glbg5tHjnWxTz1OGtnXtXFdWPLo6U-vw1EcDCAlate9eG1-UBSQPNDAuO8rIu1xmdGvMqy2ArD1QmeOARbaIlK3SYS_Z1uqN2mnrNDEMhLgqdIzV40y_IIo5AxLsEKnGv4w=w2400)

Boss Tone Studo does work on Linux under WINE but, unfortunately, it only works in offline mode; it won't directly control the GT-001. This is because it will not connect to the GT-001 until it's done a handshake with it to test the audio driver and, until recently, the GT-001 didn't work as an audio device on Linux at all (the same applies to Boss Tone Studio for Katana). However, with the patches I helped with, it now does so I may experiment with trying to get it fully working at some point.

Like the VS-20, the GT-001 also has a switchable mic input with phantom power, and includes some vocal effects. It's powered off the USB, but can also have a separate PSU connected so it can be used without a computer. It can have a footswitch or expression pedal connected, and has a mode where it can be used as a basic control surface, although it lacks the physical faders of the VS-20.

It can also be used for re-amping (as can the Katana).

An interesting capability is a guitar-to-MIDI setting which converts notes played on the guitar to MIDI notes to control a synthesizer. I have experimented with this with variable results. It can, sort of, work with strummed chords, but it mainly works with single notes, and doesn't handle slides or bends. To me it's a fun thing to experiment with, but not particularly practical.

All in all this is a really powerful, portable, and great sounding, little desktop guitar recording device, that can also be used as a standalone practice tool with headphones (or to a mixer/PA).

I actually took this with me to Japan, along with my Tele, for the last few months I was there.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: close2u on February 25, 2021, 11:03:03 pm
I was very, very interested in the GT-001 as a desktop option - which is the route I wanted to take with my minimalist no amp setup so that makes for very interesting reading Keith. I opted for a cheaper, tried and trusted revisit to a Zoom G3 that I found 2nd hand at a good price locally. But the GT-001 did come close to being mine.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on February 25, 2021, 11:16:33 pm
Boss BR-80

Now this is a fun little device:

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/AeheFN5enHVEGY4Tr_UKg81JMCVJs3LFf7tWzMk0eJy0MBLSd88NPwQ2OHAYHqa7fw55gw5-zcYVzHY67uxnhb7eyuGWPZTEeG2k3NNI5SdKz0yLry2sVCd8EsroWJw-I3Z1ee-NJbA=w2400)

This is what I got as a replacement to the old Tascam MP-GT1 guitar trainer I used to use (https://justinguitarcommunity.com/index.php?topic=47747.msg429119#msg429119) (which is now, I'm pleased to say, getting new life under the ownership of glpguitar).

In fact, I replaced the Tascam, initially, with a Boss Micro-BR (https://www.boss.info/uk/products/micro_br/) which was the first version Boss made, but then upgraded to the BR-80.

The BR-80 does a lot. It's:

It also has a built in metronome and tuner, and a bunch of supplied "micro tracks" backing tracks.

I bought this primarily because I was doing a lot of travelling and spending most of the week staying in hotels near my clients, and thought it would be useful to take along with a guitar to give me something to do in the evenings. I also took it with me when I went to work in Kuala Lumpur for 4 months several years ago. I didn't take a guitar with me, but bought a cheap electro-acoustic at a local KL music shop, and used the BR-80 with it.

I've also used it as a field recorder for all sorts of things, including helping me, and others, to learn lines on the odd occasion I've done some local am-dram: stick the recorder in the middle of the group when doing a read-through, and then send a copy to everyone to listen to whenever they want. I've also used it to capture the sound of our local church bells, which I then created a "soundfont" (synth plugin) for, and have recorded some of our handbell practices with it.

I've not really used the multi-track capabilities of it that much. I did a bit whilst in Malaysia, but layering, editing, and mixing on the tiny display and with limited controls is quite painful. You can program in your own drum sequences as part of that but, again, it's pretty painful to do it.

These days, you could do the multi-tracking and sequencing a lot easier on a smartphone or tablet.

The jog dial on this unit is getting a bit sticky and I probably need to take it apart and clean it. Other that that, it works fine and as a guitar trainer/portable amp unit, it's great.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on February 25, 2021, 11:29:10 pm
I was very, very interested in the GT-001 as a desktop option - which is the route I wanted to take with my minimalist no amp setup so that makes for very interesting reading Keith. I opted for a cheaper, tried and trusted revisit to a Zoom G3 that I found 2nd hand at a good price locally. But the GT-001 did come close to being mine.

It's a really nice little unit and incredibly powerful. From what I've seen of the Zoom G3 Edit and Share app, I would say that the GT-001 with Boss Tone Studio is a bit more capable unit in terms of tone sculpting, as well as possibly easier to use (I have heard that the skeuomorphic approach taken with Edit & Share can make it quite clunky to use in some cases).

But, of course, you don't get the stomp pedals on the GT-001. And the Zoom G3 is a pretty powerful unit so, in practice, I suspect any benefit the GT-001 has over the Zoom G3 are minimal at best.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: LievenDV on February 26, 2021, 12:48:49 pm
Cool gear I saw passing by and these reviews are very insightful; thanks.

boys and their toys; we'll never change ;)
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on February 26, 2021, 01:32:22 pm
Thanks for another round of RC updates, Keith. Always interesting to read about these devices and what they can do.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Rossco01 on February 26, 2021, 02:00:04 pm
I was very, very interested in the GT-001 as a desktop option - which is the route I wanted to take with my minimalist no amp setup so that makes for very interesting reading Keith. I opted for a cheaper, tried and trusted revisit to a Zoom G3 that I found 2nd hand at a good price locally. But the GT-001 did come close to being mine.

I have to admit Richard I really like the Zoom G3. As an intro to MFX it was very good one and worked well. My Zoom G5 was even better BUT unfortunately died  :( I think if you'd been angling at the Boss equivalent it would have been the Boss GT1, effectively the floor variant of the GT-001 which also has the old Boss GT100 engine in it.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on February 26, 2021, 03:05:43 pm
Whilst the effects and modelling engine of the GT-1 is, I think, the same as the GT-100 and GT-001, the GT-1 is very much a cut-down version in many ways. For instance you only have 1 pre-amp per patch and can't split the chain, and there's fewer effects block available to you in the chain. You also can't re-amp on the GT-1, nor use it with a microphone.

Because of that, the GT-1 has it's own, specific, version of the Boss Tone Studio, whilst the GT-001 shares the same version as the GT-100.

The GT-1 is a great little pedal, but it's not as powerful as the GT-001.

I also have the GT-1 and I plan to make a post in my Road Case about it sooner or later.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: stitch101 on February 26, 2021, 03:08:47 pm
Thank for the well writen reviews Keith and thank for you work on Linux.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: adi_mrok on February 26, 2021, 04:16:27 pm
Great stuff Keith, always interesting to read about fx side of guitar play.

Sent from my SM-G973F using JustinGuitar Community mobile app (http://r.tapatalk.com/byo?rid=93296)

Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: close2u on February 26, 2021, 04:24:50 pm
I have to admit Richard I really like the Zoom G3. ... I think if you'd been angling at the Boss equivalent ...

I knew and liked the Zoom G3 very much from earlier days. It is a great unit.
I wasn't looking at Boss equivalents ... I was really looking at options for desktop multi-fx units.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on February 27, 2021, 11:34:50 pm
Cool gear I saw passing by and these reviews are very insightful; thanks.

boys and their toys; we'll never change ;)

Thanks Lieven. Yes, that is very true!

Thanks for another round of RC updates, Keith. Always interesting to read about these devices and what they can do.

Thanks David. As ever, if you have any specific, or general, questions about any of this stuff, just ask.

Great stuff Keith, always interesting to read about fx side of guitar play.

Yes, it's an area of interest to me. Probably, in part, it's because I'm an Engineer so the use of technology to solve problems or create something interesting fascinates me.

Thank for the well writen reviews Keith and thank for you work on Linux.

Thanks Stitch. Of course, you are now a Linux user too!

Contributing back to the community is part of the philosophy of Open Source. In many ways it's a bit like this forum. The word "Ubuntu" translates, roughly, to "I am because we are".

If anyone uses Linux and has, or is considering getting, any of these devices (the Katana being the most common), kernel 5.11 is due to arrive in Ubuntu 21.04 on 22nd April 2021, and will be backported to Ubuntu 20.04 in the summer at some point.

Any distros that are based on Ubuntu (Mint, Neon, etc.) should get it at the same time.

It's also being tested for Fedora 34 which is expected April 20th 2021.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on February 28, 2021, 08:09:18 am
Thanks David. As ever, if you have any specific, or general, questions about any of this stuff, just ask.

Contributing back to the community is part of the philosophy of Open Source. In many ways it's a bit like this forum. The word "Ubuntu" translates, roughly, to "I am because we are".

Thanks Keith. Should I have a need I shall gladly take you up on that.

As a South African, reference to Ubunto naturally caught my eye, more from the culture/philosophical perspective than it's use in the Open Source community. My understanding is ever so slightly different ... it is part of a bigger expression that roughly means "I am because you are". As I say, a slight difference but perhaps significant?
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on February 28, 2021, 12:43:48 pm
Roland Studio Canvas SD-50

This is a bit of an unusual one.

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/vHD750qHKB5mWd7RBS81wBRtYs_LH5Jexs1Py0cgELfeTPMnORLFz_gjDC2rUbje8-m8dcmnULCknVB28qFO1gk8p3lv3TMmJc3NXCBbCCdfiO41gaHLVxtbsxUIeYSXmAYUbl7kIdA=w2400)

The story behind this is that a friend of mine has a covers band. I often used help them with their sound and lights, and he would always ask me for gear recommendations. Several years ago, their keyboard player had a reasonable keyboard synth, but it didn't really have a couple of sounds they needed. In particular, they were after something which gave them the synth sound from Van Halen's "Jump".

I did a bit of research and recommended this synth module: it could plug into his existing keyboard via MIDI, it had a pretty good Jump synth sound, as well as a range of decent electric piano sounds that they liked, and a second-hand one could be bought reasonably cheaply off eBay.

So they bought it and used it for a few years until the keyboard player left the band. They got a new keyboard player and he had a newer keyboard that had all the sounds they need so it got stuck in a cupboard.

A few years later when he was clearing out his cupboard, my friend found this and asked me if I wanted it, for free. He couldn't be bothered to eBay it, and he thought I would have some fun with it.

So that's how I ended up with it.

It's basically a MIDI GS Synth module, but it also has a bunch of other goodies in it too. For instance, you can plug a USB stick containing MIDI tracks into it and play them. You could use this, for instance, for backing tracks (although, being MIDI backing tracks, they might be a bit cheesy).

It's USB powered, but can also run off batteries or a power supply so you can use it independently of a computer as a synth module connected to a MIDI keyboard.

If you do connect it to a computer, it supports USB MIDI both as a MIDI synth, and as a MIDI I/O device, so you can use it as a MIDI interface for your computer. It also has an audio capture input that is switchable between mic or instrument, so you can use it as an audio interface. It has a Hi-Z setting so you can jack a guitar directly into it, and I have done this in the past. It doesn't have any amp emulation so you need to do that in software.

It's quite old in terms of synthesizer technology and it doesn't have any patch editing capability other than basic add-on effects like chorus and reverb. These days, for many of the patches you are better off using software synths or samplers, but it does have some great sounds; the piano and drum patches are very good, coming from the Roland digital piano and vDrum series.

If anyone is interested, here's a Youtube video of someone exploring some of the sounds:





I really don't use it much because, as I say, it's usually more convenient and often better to just use software synth plugins these days, but I do occasionally have a play with it or find a use for it. One of the more interesting capabilities it has is that the output from the synth can be configured to appear on the USB bus as an audio input. That means you can play a MIDI track to it and capture the resulting audio output directly just using a USB cable. Not many modern synths do that.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on February 28, 2021, 01:27:30 pm
In my best Mr Spock ... Fascinating, Keith.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on February 28, 2021, 03:24:11 pm
I've added a Youtube video of someone going through some of the sounds on the SD-50 to the post above, if anyone is interested.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on April 24, 2021, 01:32:45 pm
A quick update. I've recently had some discussions with GregB on pedalboards. I originally built  (https://justinguitarcommunity.com/index.php?topic=46237.msg396177#msg396177)my minimal pedalboard, which I keep in my office connected to my Katana amp, a couple of years ago. I built this with a Boss RC-3 looper but, since then, I've replaced this with a Digitech Trio+.

When I did this, I didn't have any spare Evidence Audio connectors to make one of the new cables I needed, so I just whacked in a standard patch cable,and it's been like that for a while:

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/P-bgoZdVIFgddlcnetAwf6Muag5LNJ--u00fUk9qBOCi_f6cLVstDcjU98MCELyEXm_lQ1oGvw5MuOHaEOKvrnRd8choeDgmox-VbA9yBG8QCemBh4yRC0CW9LNCNpEMzr4PRE3T6CM=w2400)

I had considered getting the FS3X footswitch for the Trio+ but had never got around to it, but my exchange with GregB inspired me to explore this.

The Digitech FS3X is quite physically big, and I really couldn't fit it on my pedalboard, so I got the compatible pedal from Bright Onion Pedals which is still a squeeze, but does fit. I also got some new Evidence Audio connectors and made up a new cable. This is how it looks now:

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/w_zpthSRxrZeYVQCazhzGY8vHB3xI6fjLAt6ea3UAnw2X1-Tz9_eDFSGz2Y383ZtcTVvUGfXgFssNLkPruCd72A9kTOR-LURBb8ODcSzC4xWhOfj7sbUoJwqTblbwxPPqPjeyn8jJP8=w2400)

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: DavidP on April 24, 2021, 01:41:52 pm
Looks great, Keith.
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Lord_Gigabyte on April 25, 2021, 01:48:53 pm
This is interresting.

I have a question: what is the function of the footswitch, if you have pedals on your board?
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Majik on April 25, 2021, 02:52:44 pm
This is interresting.

I have a question: what is the function of the footswitch, if you have pedals on your board?

The Digitech FS3X has three modes:

ModeSW1 functionSW2 functionSW3 function
LiveNext/Prev StyleNext Part/Select count inAlt Time mode
Live MixerMute BassMte DrumsMute Drums and Bass
TabletopSame as Trio+ SW1Next Part/Select count inSame as Trio+ SW2

One use for the footswitch is to replicate the functionality of the unit's footswitches so you can place the two apart from each other (for instance, have the Trio+ within each reach of your hands, and the FS3X so you can use your feet to trigger it). But the other use is to extend the functionality as in the Live and Live Mixer modes.

Cheers,

Keith
Title: Re: Majik's Road Case
Post by: Lord_Gigabyte on April 25, 2021, 03:29:49 pm
Allright.

Thank you for the explanation.