NAMM 2009: Ibanez 7 string guitars and 7 string basses

Check out Rich Harris’s awesome NAMM coverage at Ibanez Rules. Rich is a legend among Ibanez geeks such as myself. Here are a few interesting new 7-strings from his site, but be sure to go to to see the rest.

SR7 bass/guitar hybrid

Rich says: “My pick for the coolest new instrument at the show, Ibanez continues it’s innovation into multi string instruments but introducing a Bass/Guitar Hybrid 7 string based on the SoundGear platform. It’s tuned to standard 6 string bass tuning B E A D G C but adds a high E, you can see how easily this can be changed to normal 7 string guitar tuning. It’s 30″ scale and narrower string spacing means you can play it like a guitar, or a bass.”

This is a Prestige series instrument made in Japan. List price is $2133.32 including case. Rich has ordered some of these, so hit up his site if you’re interested.

RG7321FMBBS

Didn’t see this one coming! Rich says: “Basswood body with flamed maple top [I’m guessing veneer at this price point], 7 string, 5 piece maple/walnut Wizard II – 7 neck, jumbo frets on a bound rosewood board, basswood body, fixed 7 bridge, AH1-7 neck and AH2-7 bridge pickups.” Made in Indonesia, list price is $666.65. Case is the M100C at $159.99.

Photos by Rich Harris, but hosted by me so I don’t eat up his bandwidth.

NAMM 2009: More Dean Dime details

More details have emerged on Blabbermouth.net about Dean’s new Dimebag amp, designed with Dime’s guitar tech, Grady Champion.

Here are some excerpts.

Commented Dean Guitars CEO Elliott Rubinson: “We’ve been wanting to do an amp that replicates Dime’s tone for many, many years. I met Grady about a year or two ago, and Grady was Dime’s guitar tech for 13 years — all through the PANTERA years, all through the time that Dime developed his sound. The key is, he had the ears — he probably knew Dime’s sound better than Dime knew it, because he dialed it in every night. So we found the engineer who designed Dime’s original amplifier 13 years ago, brought him out of retirement, had him build us an amp, had Grady come over. Grady listened to it, and with a couple of tweaks, I think this thing is just dead nuts on, it’s Dime’s sound.”

Minimum Advertised Pricing (MAP) on the Dean Dime amps:

100W Head – List $530.00 / MAP $349.99
412 Cabs (straight or slant) – List $530.00 / MAP $349.99
100W Combo – List $780.00 / MAP $499.99

Head over to Blabbermouth for the full story.

NAMM 2009: Randall RM12 – twelve preamp modules? WHAT?

Last year I reviewed Randall’s RM100 head and a few preamp modules for Mixdown Magazine. This series allows you to swap out different preamps from a whole bunch of different models so you can create your ideal setup. When I reviewed the amp, my favourites were based on the Marshall Plexi and the Bogner XTC. Of course, I couldn’t help but feel that it would be great to have some way of trying out all of the modules without having to stop playing.

Enter the RM12. It was originally designed for dealers to demonstrate the modules, but its 50 watts of chameleon-like awesomeness will soon be available to the public.

The RM12 isn’t ready for production yet but I’ll keep you posted.

CLICK HERE to see the back of the RM12.

CLICK HERE to see Randall amps on eBay.

NAMM 2009: Marshall MG4 range

This is the groovy new Marshall MG4 amp, which upgrades the MG series with similar Stompware switching technology to that used in the JVM series amps. The entry-level MG series was always a very useful practice amp, but the addition of Stompware looks like it will make the amp more user-friendly for stage use too. I’m sure beginner guitarists will appreciate having easier access to their sounds when rocking out at school or at Battle of the Bands competitions and stuff like that, and I’m sure the MG4 series will be handy for teachers too.

Marshall Amplification has completely renovated its popular MG guitar amp lineup with the new MG4 Series. Combining analog tone, digital control, digital effects, and exclusive STOMPWARE® technology, the MG4 Series provides maximum versatility. Seven new combo amps — plus a 100-Watt head — provide players at every level with access to the classic Marshall sound, all at an affordable price.

Models in the new MG4 Series are:
MG10 2-channel / 10-Watt / 6.5″ combo amp
MG15 2-channel / 15-Watt / 8″ combo amp
MG15FX4-channel / 15-Watt / 8″ combo with digital effects
MG30FX4-channel / 30-Watt / 10″ combo with digital effects
MG50FX4-channel / 50-Watt / 12″ combo with digital effects
MG101FX4-channel / 100-Watt / 1 x 12″ combo with digital effects
MG102FX4-channel / 100-Watt / 2 x 12″ combo with digital effects
MG100HFX4-channel / 100-Watt head with digital effects

In addition, two 4 x 12″ cabinets are available — the MG4X12A angled cabinet and the MG4X12B straight-style cabinet.

With the MG4 Series, Marshall has returned to a simple, tried-and-true panel layout for extreme ease of use. Gain, followed by a three-band EQ (two-band Contour Control on the MG10), Volume and Master Volume are laid out for quick access. Push-button channel switching provides for smooth, uninterrupted transitions. Combining true analog tone circuitry and Marshall’s proprietary FDD* technology, the solid-state MG4 Series achieves that authentic Marshall sound and feel. The combination line out/headphone out features speaker cabinet emulation, providing the user with full Marshall sound when recording or practicing through headphones. A line input allows for playing along with CDs, MP3s, etc. *(Frequency Dependant Damping — used to replicate the interaction between an all-tube amplifier and the loudspeaker)

Beginning with the MG15FX, the MG4 Series adds Reverb, plus Digital Effects (Chorus, Phaser, Flanger, Delay) and digital programmability. The delay time can be manually set using the front panel Tap button. Settings for each channel can be customized and saved for instant recall. The STOMPWARE footswitch (optional for MG15FX and MG30FX) provides seamless transitioning from sound to sound and tap tempo, plus a built-in tuner with LCD display. STOMPWARE technology allows this sophisticated multi-function pedal to be connected using a traditional guitar cable, eliminating the need for special or hard-to-find cables.

In addition, the MG50FX, MG101FX, MG102FX and MG100HFX feature a switchable effects loop for adding a favorite external effect to the sound. These models also include the STOMPWARE footswitch as standard equipment.

For more information, visit their web site at www.marshallamps.com.

An I Heart Guitar reader alterted me to these cool clips of Kerry King and Doug Aldrich demoing the MG series at NAMM on the Premier Guitar website.

NEWS: Vote for the next Ibanez PGM reissue

In yet more Paul Gilbert/Ibanez news, Ibanez is giving fans the final say in which past PGM model guitar will be reissued. Cool huh?

You can see each of the models and place your vote here.

I have a feeling the winner will be the PGM200 (left), although as a Talman geek I’d love to see the PGM900 (below) achieve wider recognition. Or perhaps, with the massive $9,333.33 price tag on Paul’s new Fireman model, fans will vote for the next closest thing, the Iceman-based PGM600?

The Ibanez site reads:

In celebration of the PGM’s 20th Anniversary, we look back on the past two decades of crazy colors and designs that have made each PGM a unique instrument unto itself. There are a lot of memories associated with each model, and who better than Paul Gilbert to discuss what they are. Here is the complete lineup of PGM models along with personal comments and stories from Paul himself. Let us reminisce!

To mark the occasion, we are putting the guitars to a vote. The model with the most votes will be put back into production. Some of these were only available in Japan, so here’s your chance to revive your favorite. Voting will begin January 15th and conclude on March 20th (GMT24:00).

CLICK HERE to see Ibanez Paul Gilbert guitars on eBay.

NAMM 2009: Steve Vai’s Legacy II launch (video)

Just spotted this on Blabbermouth.net… Steve Vai’s press conference launching the Legacy II amp for Carvin at NAMM. In the video, Steve talks about the design concept behind the amp, including the new added channel, which is a boost for the clean channel. Unfortunately he doesn’t actually play through the amp in the video.

The Legacy II will be released at the end of February.

SPARKLY GUITAR WEEK: Day 2 – Fender Dick Dale Stratocaster

Today’s sparkly guitar is the Fender Dick Dale Stratocaster. Look at that damn thing. The heavy strings and gutsy single coil pickups say “I’m gonna kick your ass in the parking lot,” but the sparkly gold finish says “Then I’m going to run my flick-comb through my hair and drive off in a duck egg blue Caddy.”

Specs are:

Custom Artist Series. Maple neck with special shape, rosewood fretboard, 21 frets, reverse headstock, vintage tremolo, 3 Custom 50’s pickups, special switching, master volume, chartreuse sparkle finish, brown tolex case. Made in U.S.A.

CLICK HERE to buy the Fender Dick Dale Signature Stratocaster from Musician’s Friend.

Or CLICK HERE to see Fender Dick Dale signature Strats on eBay.