Danny Gatton T-Style Pickups

The Danny Gatton T-Style Pickups are great high-end dual blade replacement pickups. Inspired by and originally designed for Danny Gatton, these pickups are favored by professional Tele players around the world. They’re more than just your basic repair part—they bring a great vintage tone to your guitar along with increased fidelity. You’ll find that the pickups keep the highs, lows, and mids equal in power thereby eliminating that tinny, thin sound that often Tele style guitars suffer from.

One of the biggest problems Tele players often have is that the output from the bridge pickup is very different from that of the neck, but the T-Neck can be adjusted so that it’s equal to the T-bridge. The T-bridge uses a very unique staggered blade design that balances the response from the outer strings.

In addition to the standard Gatton T-Style pickups, a Nashville T-Style set and a Modern T-Style Bridge Pickup are also available. The Nashville set uses a standard Stratocaster pickup as its center pickup and is designed to compliment the Gatton neck and bridge pickups. The Modern pickup gives more power to the bridge position but doesn’t lose any of the tone the Gatton T-Styles are designed for.

The T-style pickups fit on any standard Tele body with no modifications required. They use four conductor shielded cable so any wiring combination is possible. The Gatton T-Neck, Gatton T-Bridge, and Modern T-Bridge sell for $159.95; the Gatton and Modern sets are priced at $293.95, and the Nashville T-Style set sells for $439.85.

For more info be sure to visit the Joe Barden website

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February 24, 2011
Posted in Joe Barden — anthony @ 4:46 pm

David Bray Amps – Vintage Plexi Sound

David Bray Amps is a small amp company located in Yucca Valley, California. The company, founded by David Bray, offers point-to-point, handwired Plexi style amps using high-end components such as ARS, Heyboer, Metropolis, F&T, Weber, Sozo as well as his own. He offers a few stock models ranging from 45 to 100 watts inspired by classic Marshall's, but Bray hand-builds each amp to fit his clients’ unique needs. He also does a lot of mods to existing amps. The tone you can pull out these amps can conjure anything from classic Cream, to early Van Halen, Angus...you get the idea.

One of the things Bray focuses on is increasing the musicality of each amp he works on. Before he delivers or ships out any amp he'll plug in his own guitar and record a short clip of what the amp sounds like. If the client likes the sound, he ships the amp. If not, he goes back to work.

Bray’s stock amps include the Mod I, which he likes to think of as a glorified plexi. It features plexi architecture but has a number of upgrades that make it much more musical, clear, allowing for more harmonic content. He also has the Mod I PLUS, which is everything the Mod I is plus two extra higher gain levels. When you engage PLUS mode both channels are in series which allows for the higher gain levels.

Another model offered by Bray is the 45 Custom Plexi Style Head. This amp is based on the JTM 45 made back in the 60s. It has a cleaner tone, however, and puts out a more mid-focused sound. Bray customizes these amps with the client’s choice of mods, voicing, and more.

The Bray 100 custom Plexi Style Head is for players who need some serious power. You’ll never lose a volume war with this beast. It’s basically a super-powered version of the Bray 50 custom Plexi Style Head.

For more info check out the David Bray amps website:

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February 23, 2011
Posted in David Bray Amps — anthony @ 4:36 pm

Kingsley ToneBaron

Kingsley Amplification is the brainchild of Simon Jarrett, a UK born professional guitarist now living in British Columbia. A serious and studied guitarist in his own right, Jarrett also spent many years servicing Fender, Hiwatt, Marshall and Vox amps. He channeled his years of experience into a line of boutique amps with it's unique blend of classic British and American circuits. If you're the kind of player that likes versatility when it comes to dialing in your sound then you might find Kingsley's amps very interesting.

The Kingsley’s ToneBaron is a 60 watt cathode biased amp that provides a lot of power while still being very flexible tone wise. It’s builds upon KIngsley's earlier models, namely the Deluxe 30 and Deluxe 32, by providing twice the output and offering more variable options than either of them. One of it's defining features is it's ability to accept a variety of different output tubes and different combinations, giving players licnese to experiment with a wide range of sounds.

The amp comes standard with either four EL34 tubes or four 6L6s tubes, but players can request or later switch out these tubes for 5881s, KT77s, KT66s, 6550s, or 6V6s. The ToneBaron features two pairs of octal sockets in the power amp section. Each of these pairs has its own on-off switch, so it’s possible to turn off each pair and let the amp run in a reduced power mode using only two output tubes. A pentode/triode switch lets you then cut the power in half for any tube complement. This means you can run this amp with 60 watts, 30 watts, or as little as 7 watts as necessary.

In the preamp section, the ToneBaron features two channels. Channel 1 is for low to medium gain, and works great for blues and rock. The second channel is for clean tones, and works well with jazz and for bright guitars like strats and teles. You can run the two pre-amp channels in either parallel or series modes. While in parallel each channel is independent of the other and can be activated simply by plugging in to either one. An ABY box can be used to select channels remotely. The amp's front panel has a switch to move between modes. In series mode, the overdrive channel is routed in series into the clean channel. The allows for a simple effects loop to be created by using the channel 1 output jack to send effects to the input of channel 2. This creates a real basic and natural effects loop by avoiding extra circuitry and gain stages. It also gives you option to blend the reverb on Channel 2 with overdrive of channel 1. You can also add in an effects loop pedal so that you can select the channels remotely and use effects like delay on both channels, switching between the two sounds on the spot.

The Kingsley ToneBaron comes in a 1x12 combo, 2x12 combo, or as a head. Pricing for the ToneBaron is as follows: Head: $3225, 1x12: $3380, 2x12: $3535

For more info and soundclips you can visit the Kingsley Website.

There were no videos on the ToneBaron available but here are some related ones

Kingsley D 30 Demo

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February 22, 2011
Posted in Kingsley — anthony @ 7:33 pm

ChromeDomeAudio Tone Philosopher 20 Vintage Gain

If you'd like to be able to dial in both British and American gain in one amp, then ChromeDomeAudio's Tone Philosopher might be something you want to check out. Think vintage AC-30 meets Tweed / Blackface era Fender. The Tone Philosopher 20 Vintage Gain has a truly loud tone without any of that arena hall volume. The amp features a preamp section inspired by some of the classic British amps. It has great sustain, a decent amount of headroom and a versatile and vintage sounding overdrive. As far as controls are concerned, the TP 20 uses the same layout as other Tone Philosopher amps, including gain, volume, treble, bass, and presence knobs.

The TP 20 also features a hi-gain switch so you can lets you easily tweak how much front end drive the amp has. It also features a C-Cap switch that swaps between American and British values for the preamp frequency response. The T-Cap switch lets players decide between two different values in the treble section, while the Slope switch changes the frequency emphasis in the tone stack. You can also use the M-Cap to select three different tone stack cap values for mid range. All of these controls let you customize your sound so that it’s uniquely yours.

The Tone Philosopher 20 uses two 12AX7 tubes and two 6V6GT tubes for preamp. It also makes use of a Warehouse Guitar Speaker Veteran 30. This is a really versatile and powerful new amp and at $799 it's more than a pretty good value.

For more info be sure to check out the ChromeDomeAudio website:

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February 21, 2011
Posted in ChromeDomeAudio — anthony @ 9:27 pm

Artist Gear Profile – Jim Campilongo

Jim Campilongo is one of those rare artists that' works every inch of tone, style and technique, without ever losing you emotionally. He's definitely a guitar player's guitar player, but you get the sense that he thinks as much like a songwriter when you hear his solo albums. His music conjures the ghosts of classic country and early rock and roll, but through a modern lense. At times haunting and ethereal, upbeat and swinging, dark and disonant, Campilongo keeps you guessing and thoroughly entertained. I can't say I've heard all his stuff, but one listen to Live At The Du Nord is enough to make a convert out of anyone.

I think it's fair to say that Campilongo's sound isn't something that anyone is just going to cop by plugging into the right gear. As with any great tone there is alchemy going on there that can't be distilled down to a method or blueprint. But perhaps if we take a look under the hood it might provide us with a cool starting point on our own quest for the right sound.

Influences:
Before we get into gear though, I think the first place to look would be the players that influenced him. He sites his biggest influence (and mentor) as Roy Buchanan, which makes total sense. Buchanan was a master at things like pitch harmonics, tone & volume pot swells, bending behind the nut, and all matter of pedal steel style innovations. Getting a grip on these types of techniques would no doubt be a great starting point. Buchanan's first self-entitled album is a treasure trove of these ideas. (more...)

February 18, 2011
Posted in Tone,Tone Profiles — David @ 4:58 pm

East Amplification

Jeff Bober is one of the most renowned and innovative amp designers in the U.S., and now he offers up his years of experience and creativity in a line of products from East Amplification. His new company began in 2010, as a natural evolution of the work he has created to date. East amps have an amazing, unique voice while still retaining much of the feel, sound and vibe of classic vintage amps.

Bober began his career in the mid 80s. At first, he worked for different artists repairing and modifying their amps. He worked for Precision Audio Tailoring at first, and during that time, he actually had the chance to build equipment for Stevie Ray Vaughan. During the 90s, Bober worked for a company in Washington DC. There, he produced a small combo amp called the Fenton Basic 110. This was the amp that brought him to the attention of Scot Sier, and the two created a new company called Budda Amplification in 1995.

While at Budda, Bober built the Twinmaster amp, an 18 watt amp that was like no other. It wasn’t a clone of any other amp but had a unique old school character in a time when 50 and 100 watt amps were the norm. While it didn’t catch on at first, soon many players saw what the Twinmaster had to offer and jumped on it. In 2009, after being purchased by Peavey, Bober left Budda amps to start East Amplification.

The first amp from East Amplification is the Studio2, a full featured, versatile amp designed for recording and for playing in small venues. It’s only a 2 watt amp, but like the Twinmaster, Bober has wrung every bit of power and sound from it. It’s only the first of what is sure to be a great line of amps from East Amplification and Jeff Bober. The studio 2 is available as both a combo and head. More recently he released the club which is a 18 watt amp that also comes in both combo and head.

For more info check out the demo videos below or the East website:

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February 17, 2011
Posted in East Amplification — anthony @ 1:25 pm
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