Category Archives: Versterkers

JamUp XT Review

 

JamUp XT Review

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Hallo guitar fans. This month I am presenting JamUp XT Pro iOS app developed by Positive Grid. This is not only one of the best guitar amp simulators out there in my own opinion, it is much more than that.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

JamUp XT review by Daddo Oreskovich

 

Some time ago, with the appearance of the first iOS apps for guitarists, iPad, iPod, or iPhone were merely a tool for great practice, warm-up or hotel room jam. Android is still not even close to iOS because of its latency issue.

I remember almost two years ago when I bought my iRig audio interface. I downloaded free AmpliTube app and I was amazed with an opportunity to practice virtually anywhere without harassing my neighbors with Progressive Metal and Rock music by turning my amp and the full gear on 🙂 The sounds were decent and the app served its purpose -> to be used as a practice tool.

jamup xt pro

 

After I found out about JamUp, honestly, I thought this is just one of the many variations of the same thing. I was so wrong 🙂 It is not only the perfect practice tool, it is truly every guitarist’s “Swiss army knife” app. All magazines like: MacWorld, Guitar World, Guitar Player, Guitarist and Premier Guitar were reviewing the app with high appraisals, introducing the best seen symbiosis of Apple iOS and actual musical instrument.

What is JamUp? It is guitar amp and FX simulator, multi track recording device, loop/phrase sampler, guitar tuner and professional backing track player with tempo and pitch tweak possibility. What makes possible using this app live is ability of pairing with a third party MIDI controller pedals.

Amp simulators

jamup xt pro

Virtually almost every amp is emulated here; Fender, Marshall, Messa Boogie, Orange, Peavy, Laney are just to name a few. Regardless of what version of JamUp you downloaded (free or pro version), all additional amps and stomp boxes can be obtained through the “in app purchase”. There are 3 categories of amps: acoustic, electric and bass guitar amps.

 

Stomp boxes

jamup xt pro

There are 6 stomp box groups in JamUp:

  • nosie gate FX
  • modulation FX (chorus, flanger, wah, phaser…)
  • reverb FX
  • delay FX
  • EQ
  • Compression and overdrive/distortion group

All effects and amps can be moved in the signal chain order. For example, you can drag the Tube Screamer stomp to be the first in the signal chain, Noise Gate on the last spot, etc… like the “real-world” pedalboard. All parameters are very easy and straightforward. Just use your imagination and tailor to your taste. All settings can be configured as a “patch”. There are 4×16 patch slots including factory presets. Each slot and patch name can be renamed of course.

 

Jam Player

jamup xt pro

Jam player is professional grade audio file player. You can import your favorite guitar backing tracks and regulate their tempo and speed. This comes very handy if you have string lock on your guitar and the backing track is half step down for instance. Just raise the pitch parameter half step up to “1 o’clock”  and you can jam without retuning your instrument. Very cool. This is also great aid for singers. Not every male singer has a vocal range of David Coverdale or Bruce Dickinson, so backing track pitch comes very handy -> great karaoke player as well 🙂

If you are “one-man-band “, it is great to control both your guitar sound and backing track in the same app, without a need for a separate CD/Karaoke player. Both volumes (guitar and backing track) are controlled separately.

 

Phrase sampler

jamup xt pro

Let’s say you are on a guitar clinic or you have your guitar solo section on the gig. You can record and loop a phrase, and then play over it. You can also load a drum loop from your iPod library and jam with it and also save it for later exploit. Loop and instrument levels are controlled separately.

 

8-track recorder

jamup xt pro

One of the best tools in JamUp. I use it frequently when filming lessons for Live4guitar. I record video on the HD camcorder, I play backing track on iPad and record live guitar track on iPad. This eliminates dragging the computer to the best spot in my apartment for video recording.

Lets say you have your ProTools or any DAW session. You can export each track and the drums stem, and import into 8-track recorder for better control. You can also copy audio file from another app such as Garage Band as well. You can also record your guitar or bass in another app on the same iDevice using “Audio Bus” app. I briefly explain it how in the review video.

Many, many possibilities and options. This is why I claim JamUp to be the “Swiss Army Knife” music app.

Tone/Patch sharing

jamup xt pro

This is one of the unique features in JamUp. You can share your patches on-line with JamUp community. People can like or comment your patch.

I am truly honored to be chosen by Positive Grid as their featured artist. You can download and jam with my signature “Preset Pack“. More about my Preset Pack in this video:

 

 

Using JamUp live

jamup xt pro - controler

There are vast possibilities of connecting your guitar to JamUp and your iDevice to your pedal board. I am using Griffin pedal controller with JamUp. You can configure 4 different stomp switches from the app. This controller also has an expression pedal input, so you can control volume and Cry Baby wah. At the time of this writing, Positive Grid is developing emulation of Digitech Whammy so stay tuned for that one 🙂 There are many different third party external MIDI pedals that can be used with JamUp. For complete list visit www.positivegrid.com 

In the next video, I’m showing my Griffin controller and talking about my hybrid pedalboard in details.

 

 

The Verdict

I am giving JamUp 10/10 points. This is universal “guitar Swiss army knife app” for every guitarist and bassist. It can very astoundingly emulate all vintage amps and stomp effects. It can be used for making music, recording and sharing the ideas and patches. It can be used as a source of recording in other apps via “Audio Bus” app, so you can use JamUp sounds in Apple Garage Band for instance. With third party MIDI controllers, it can be used live on stage.

What else one needs? It’s all in there, in iOS app called JamUp XT.

Download free version and see it for yourself. Here is direct iTunes link:
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/jamup-xt-amp-effects-processor/id449820506?mt=8

 

(by Daddo Oreskovich in Reviews | 08. 06. 2013.)

Hughes & Kettner Tubemeister 36 Amp Head

Hughes & Kettner’s Tubemeister has a few new tube heads. The 5 watt mini amp, the 18 and 36 watt. I was impressed of the feature set and huge sound of the 5 watt. The  Tubemeister 36, with 36 watts of output and three channels, offers considerably more features in a compact package that’s only about twice the size of the Tubemeister 5. The Tubemeister 36 may still qualify as a mini amp, but the only things small about it are its physical dimensions and affordable price. It offers versatility, performance and functions that aren’t available on many three-channel amps nearly four times its size.

FEATURES

The Tubemeister 36 is a stylish amp head featuring chrome handles on its sides and a clear Plexiglas faceplate that lets you see the transformers and glowing tubes inside. The interior is also illuminated with cool blue LEDs when the amp is powered up. Four EL84 tubes drive the power amp section to provide 36 watts of output, while three 12AX7 tubes drive the preamp section. To keep the size as small as possible, the Tubemeister 36 features onboard digital reverb instead of a bulky spring reverb tank. The reverb is also programed to sound full and lush with clean tones and become less pronounced with crunch and distortion tones to avoid the smeared mush that often occurs when using reverb with high-gain sounds.

The front panel is logically laid out. It has separate gain and master volume controls for the Clean, Crunch and Lead channels, three-band EQ (treble, mid, bass) controls for the Clean channel, and three-band EQ controls that are shared by the Crunch and Lead channels. Each channel has its own push-button selector switch, although you can also switch channels with an optional footswitch controller or via MIDI. The rear panel reveals most of the Tubemeister 36’s “secret” weapons, which include its Power Soak feature, Red Box DI output and TSC (Tube Safety Control) self-adjusting bias feature.

The Power Soak reduces power to 18 watts, five watts or one watt and provides a speaker-off setting that allows guitarists to use the head without an external speaker cabinet or load box. The Power Soak is also MIDI programmable, allowing users to program different settings for each channel (such as 36 watts for the Clean channel for maximum clean headroom, 18 watts for the Crunch channel to produce full-bodied power amp overdrive and five watts for the Lead channel to generate singing sustain at lower volumes). Up to 128 different combinations can be saved. The Red Box is an XLR DI output with 4×12 speaker emulation for sending the preamp and power amp tone to a mixing console or recorder. The TSC automatically adjusts optimum bias, and rear-panel LEDs indicate if the power tubes are malfunctioning.

A MIDI input lets guitarists use an external MIDI controller to switch channels, reverb, effect loop and Power Soak settings, and a MIDI Learn switch makes it easy to assign amp settings to a program-change number. The seven-pin MIDI connector also provides up to 20 volts of direct current for powering a MIDI controller without an external power supply.

PERFORMANCE

I thought the Tubemeister 5 sounded huge, but the Tubemeister 36 sounds absolutely colossal, especially when connected to a 4×12 cabinet. Like most Hughes & Kettner amps, it has its own sonic personality, so you’ll want to try a variety of cabinets to find the best match. With 1×12 cabinets, the amp sounded best through speakers with scooped midrange characteristics, as the Tubemeister 36’s inherent midrange is quite pronounced and assertive. I use it with the Carvin Legacy 2 x 12 speaker cabinet.

The Clean channel offers more than ample undistorted headroom, and it can generate lush, gorgeous tones with the reverb dialed in. The Crunch and Lead channels deliver plenty of supersaturated gain and sustain, but if you prefer muscular power amp thump you can get that even at low volume levels thanks to the Power Soak. Don’t let the Tubemeister 36’s small size and 36-watt output fool you—this is a truly gigworthy amp that’s more than loud enough for the stage. And if you need more volume you can feed its glorious tone to the house PA via its impressive Red Box DI.

THE BOTTOM LINE

The Hughes & Kettner Tubemeister 36 may be a mini amp head, but it provides outstanding tones, versatile professional features and distinctive innovations that many full-size amps don’t offer.

Morley BPA 25/50 Bigfoot

It you ever thought that it’s impossible to integrate a complete amp in a stompbox. Well Morley did it in the late 70s: Morley BPA 25/50 Bigfoot. An amplifier with a power of 40 watts.
On the left side you will find the volume, treble and bass knob.
The foot switch is the master volume that responds fairly accurately.
Left of the footswitch you find the treble booster. Right is the bass booster built.

You plug on the right side of your guitar. You can also find the output where you speaker (cabinet) on can aanlsuiten directly. Furthermore, the pedal also an output to plug. Directly into a mixer

In the past, I even have my headphones connected to it.
If the amplifier is too warm for a longer period of time, then there will be a light bulb as a warning.

A wonderful piece of nostalgia, I’ve found after years of searching again back.

Carvin VL300 Legacy 3

Compared with the firm’s standing in the US, Carvin has a fairly low profile here in the UK and players are in danger of missing out on some very tidy guitars and amps.

However, such is the furore that surrounds any release from the House of Vai, be it musical or equipment in nature, there’s little chance of this new Carvin Legacy 3 passing anyone by.

“Clean channel three is gorgeous, mixing a Fender-style chime and brightness with a fatter, juicier low-end.”

Vai himself outlines the development of the Legacy range as a whole on page 128, sofor now we’ll point out the salient facts. This is a three-channel, all-valve affair that mixes genuine portability – it’s reassuringly weighty, but easily carried in one hand – with a choice of output levels for live use as well as in the studio.

The amp can run at 100, 50 or 15 watts via a three-way slider switch on the rear panel, and even though the power section out of the box is based around EL34 valves, you can also fit 6L6s and bias accordingly with yet another switch.

Channels one and two are exactly the same – both technically and in use – as those found on the original Legacy. Channels two and three share a three-way EQ and augment the tone tailoring options with individual presence controls. Not only does channel three prove to be by far the dirtiest of the triumvirate, it also has an additional gain stage that can be switched in via the front panel, although sadly not with the optional FS44M footswitch.

“It’s the completely filthy dirty channel,” says Vai. “I use the second channel as my main rhythm sound and then I’ll kick in a distortion pedal, but that means more electronics and it’s hard to find a good one that doesn’t take away the top end and lighten up the bottom. So the third channel is designed to kick in for those really intense kinds of overdrives.”

One feature Vai is especially keen on is the master section, which includes a volume, boost function and reverb control.

“I wanted a master volume that changes the level without changing the tone,” he explains. “You’ve got it to sound the way you like, and then you gotta turn it down because you’re tooloud and you lose all your mojo. With the Legacy 3, you can get your sound, then bring it up and down.”

The boost function, which at its maximum setting adds a relatively subtle 6dB to the signal, can be selected with the footswitch. It’s an easy method of upping the signal on demand, but you do need to turn it back off manually when changing channels because it’s not automatically bypassed.

The internal lightshow, the hue of which changes with each channel selection, looks great, and it can be altered or even bypassed if you wish. In addition, there’s an inexpensive chassis custom colour option – “the colour for me this year is Seafoam Green,” jokes Vai.

There are a number of cabinet options available too, and of course there’s no real need to use a Carvin cab at all if you don’t want to. But we began our sound tests using the bespoke CT212S, an angled 2 x 12 loaded with Celestion Vintage 30s that stands vertically.

Sounds

As this is a Vai signature head, we reached for our battered Ibanez Blue Floral JEM and, before concentrating on each channel in turn, we had a quick flick around the three to get our bearings.

With channels two and three, we were struck by the rather muffled nature of the initial drive tones. However, this led to the discovery that the EQ section is among the most responsive we can remember playing with, especially on an out-and-out rock amp.

The trick is to balance the shared bass, middle and treble of the two hotter channels to obtain sounds you wish to use, and then use the independent presence controls to fine-tune. To give an idea of just how sensitive it is, turning channel two’s presence knob from six to just under seven adds almost too much rasp, and although the process of dialling-in and balancing tones is an involved one, it must be remembered that this is a wholly pro amp.

Channel two is where the lion’s share of suitable rhythm rock tones reside and, with the drive set to just over five, there is sufficient gain to enable us to rock out without sacrificing Vai’s characteristic tonal clarity and string separation. The drive compresses markedly around seven, so keeping the setting below that helps to keep the tone transparent.

With identical control settings, channel three is slightly thicker and smoother. The balancing act here is to marry drive settings with crisp presence and the additional gain switch, which heaps drive upon drive to really extend musical sustain.

The footswitchable boost function adds up to 6dB of signal hike and is a gradual rather than immediate effect, which easily allows lead parts or licks to stand out across the whole amp. One downside is that, if you have the boost switched on and then go to another channel, the boost remains, requiring you to turn it off manually. As we’ve said many times before of course, MIDI switching is your friend in solving this inconvenience.

Clean channel three is gorgeous, mixing a Fender-style chime and brightness with a fatter, juicier low-end. The reverb, which is equally impressive, can be assigned to any and all channels and makes clean sections sing, whether using single-coils or mid-powered humbuckers.

The three power options give yet more tonal options, not least for recording, and the usual guidelines apply: 50 watts gives fatter gains at lower volumes, while the full 100 offers the best headroom for clean tones.

Other guitars used during our tests included the Gibson Les Paul Standard and Fender American Standard Strat, as well as a Charvel San Dimas and an EMG-loaded ESP, and each required a given level of EQ tweaks to tick the necessary boxes. However, none sounded as Vai-authentic as the JEM and, if nothing else, the fact that we can get sounds that are anywhere close to those of Mr Vai says a great deal about how sonically impressive the Legacy 3 is.

Don’t be fooled by its size. Unlike similarly tonesome units such as the Orange Tiny Terror, H&K TubeMeister and Hayden MoFo, this is a full-powered, hand-wired, 100-watt amp and represents what we think is excellent value at just over a grand.

The Vai connotations notwithstanding, it’s packed with great tones, not least those of the magnificent clean channel. From those sparkling yet rounded Fender-style chimes to all out high-gain mayhem, this is a versatile and very special amp. The audience is glistening…

MusicRadar Rating

5 / 5 stars
Pros

Great tones; lovely clean channel; portable; LEDs.

Cons

The assumption that you’ll also need a specific guitar. We don’t think that you do.

Verdict

Finally, a high-powered, all-valve amp that comes in a more than portable package.

 

 

( www.musicradar.com – Simon Bradley )

The Jim Marshall Story (29-07-1923 / 05-04-2012)

“I really like my old Marshall tube amps, because when they’re working properly (i.e., when the volume is turned up all the way), there’s nothing can beat them, nothing in the whole world. It looks like two refrigerators hooked together…..”

James Marshall Hendrix – Los Angeles, California (1967)

Jim Marshall, circa 2000While it’s hard for most of us to imagine now, there once was a time when rock and roll and all of its associated trappings simply didn’t exist. Dance bands and “Big Bands” were the rage along with wholesome family entertainment and cabaret shows. Black and white television was still a big deal and to stay out after the pubs had closed was almost bohemian. Now we’ve got colour television, MTV, birth control, jets, divorce, mortgages, two car families.

And rock and roll.

There are probably many people who have played a part in both of these eras, but surely few so significantly as Jim Marshall. It has always amazed me how such a quiet and unassuming man as Jim should become involved in a wild and frenzied business like rock, let alone to have contributed to such a violent assault on music lovers’ ears with the invention of the “stack”. But he has never led what you could call an ordinary life. He was born in Kensington on the 29th of July, 1923 to Mrs. Beatrice Marshall and her husband Jim. Unfortunately, he suffered from tuberculosis of the bones which meant that he was in plaster cast from his ankles up to his armpits during most of his school years.

He managed just eight weeks at school before leaving at the age of thirteen and a half to start a variety of jobs. His father owned a fish and chip shop in Western Road, Southall, but it wasn’t for Jim, so he started drifting around and found work as and where he could. He worked in a scrap metal yard, a builder’s merchant, as a baker in a biscuit factory, a “boiler” in a jam factory, a salesman in a shoe shop and as a meat slicer for a canned food group where he sliced off the top of his thumb!

Yet all this time he seemed to have a thirst for knowledge and had started reading books on engineering. Due to his illness he failed his medical for the Forces, so he went to work at Cramic Engineering throughout the Second World War and then he put his new found engineering expertise to good use by working at Heston Aircraft in Middlesex as a toolmaker from 1946 to 1949. However, at the age of 14 he had learned how to tap dance and music was already very much at the forefront of his mind.

“I went to tap dancing lessons and a Band Leader who’s grand daughter was in the same class as me heard me sing, he said he was playing locally at the Monapole, this was the largest dance hall in Southall. He asked me to come along and he would try me out. He thought that I sounded fine with just a pianist but may not be all right with a 16 piece orchestra. It turned out fine and from then on I was singing 5 or 6 times a week.

“I was making 10 shillings a night and because it was wartime, we didn’t have any petrol for cars, so I would ride my bicycle with a trailer behind it to carry my drum kit and the PA cabinets which I had made! I then left the orchestra to be with a 7 piece band and in 1942 the drummer leader was called into the forces and I took over on drums.”

Realising that he wanted to be more proficient at drumming, he started taking drum lessons from Max Abrams in 1946 in Knightsbridge every Sunday, trying to emulate the style of his idol, Gene Krupa.

“At the end of two years, I became quite efficient on drums”, so in 1949 Jim started teaching other drummers in Lonsdale Road, Southall. “I taught Mitch Mitchell who joined Jimi Hendrix, Micky Burt of Chas and Dave, Micky Waller with Little Richard and Micky Underwood who played with Ritchie Blackmore. I used to teach about 65 pupils a week and what with playing as well, I was earning in the early 1950’s somewhere in the region of £5,000 a year, which was how I first saved money to go into business.”

“In 1960 I started building bass and PA cabinets in my garage because nothing was really made as a column speaker, and I had the idea of using two 12″ speakers. Also, there was nothing produced whatsoever in those days for bass guitar. The bass guitarists used to complain that they were being out-gunned all the time by the lead guitar and they asked me for help. So I started building bass cabinets. They usually used a single 18″ speaker in a very small enclosure completely packed with sawdust and wood shavings. The back of the speaker cone was covered with a canvas back to prevent wood shavings from getting inside, and later used a 25 watt Leak amp as the power.”

The sales sheet described them as the “Custom-Line Range” of amplification and were available in 12″, 15″ or 18″ enclosures with Goodmans speakers and they looked strikingly similar to the “Selmers” of the time. Initially they were offered with “Linear” amplifiers, then “Leaks”, and production lasted for about a year. The catalogue announced that the cabinets were endorsed by “The Fabulous Flee-rekkers” and “The Sensational Flintstones”! It is perhaps no coincidence that Jim’s son Terry played saxophone with the “Flee-rekkers” and Rod Freeman, who was a salesman at Jim’s shop, played guitar and sang with the “Flintstones”.

“Having taught so many drummers, I used to buy Premier drums from the Selmer shop in Charing Cross Road and sell them to my students. The manager said that it was rather silly spending all this money there so why didn’t I open up my own drum shop? That’s how I started in retail. Then the drummers brought their groups in, including Pete Townshend, and said why don’t you stock guitars and amplifiers, which I knew nothing about. This would have been July, 1960.

“So I took the groups advice and they said they wanted Fender and Gibson. They were usually Fender Stratocaster guitars and Tremolux amps as well as quite a few Gibson semi-acoustics such as the 335. It was what they wanted and Ben Davis, who was the boss of Selmer at the time who imported most of the top models, was worried about how much I was buying, but I had already sold what was ordered. I then started stocking them in depth, as a result of which the West End dealers gave me 6 months to last.

“Ken Bran used to come into the shop with his band ‘Peppy and the New York Twisters’. At that time I think Ken was eager to stop travelling with the band and he said that if ever you want a service engineer don’t forget me. About a year later, after he’d worked with Pan Am, he came to work for me in 1962.

“It was Ken who said to me that it was rather silly to keep on buying in amplifiers when we could probably produce our own. So I told Ken to produce something and let me listen to it. We went all out to build a lead amp; I made the chassis while Ken and a bright young engineer called Dudley Craven designed and built the circuitry. I had already had chats with Pete Townshend, Brian Poole and the Tremoloes and Jim Sullivan and they said that they wanted something different in the sound because Fender was too clean, and listening to what they said imparted in my mind the idea of the sound they wanted.

“Obviously, we looked at the Fender amps because they were my favourite amplifier and the Bassman seemed to be nearer the sound that people were talking about, rather than their lead amplifier. So we were influenced by it, but after all, there is nothing new in valve technology; it’s all been done before.”

So the first prototype was built in September of 1962 and was a bare chassis without a cabinet to allow modifications to be made more easily. The first 4×12 followed shortly thereafter.

“We tried a 2×12 with the 50 watt lead but it didn’t give us the sound we wanted or the projection that was required; we kept blowing the speakers. Then we had the idea of putting four 12″ speakers into the smallest enclosure we could. There was nothing brilliant about designing the first 4×12, it was purely the most convenient size to get into the transport that groups had in those days. I thought that it didn’t look very nice with just the amp sitting on top, so I did the angle to match the dimensions of the amplifier and make it look a neater package. We were really proud when we finished it.”

Many orders were taken from that first prototype and Jim recognised that he was into something. By 1963 he had expanded the shop to include a small manufacturing area where Ken and his assistant Dudley built the first amplifiers at the rate of about one a week. As demand increased, the cabinet manufacturing was moved to another shop across the street and then into a 20 x 30 ft workshop in Southall, Middlesex.

By 1964 Jim had to expand again and the first proper Marshall factory opened in Hayes with 6000 sq. ft. and 16 people making 20 amplifiers a week.

Marshalls were only available to customers at first from his own shop in Hanwell then, as word spread, Jim offered them to other retailers in the South of England while his friend Johnny Jones of “Jones and Crossland” in Birmingham Distributed them in the north of England from late ’63. This arrangement continued for about 18 months until 1965 when Jim signed an exclusive Worldwide distribution agreement with Rose-Morris that was to last for about 15 years. Consequently, Johnny lost the rights to distribute Marshall so Jim introduced the “Park” line of amplifiers for Johnny to distribute as a favour.

It was now 1965. Britain was revelling in the hysteria of the “Beat Boom”, America was succumbing to the “British Invasion”……. and Pete Townshend needed a bigger amp. Jim put Ken to work on the prototype 100 watt head.

“Jimi said that he wanted to use Marshall gear and that he was also going to be one of the top people in the world at this type of music. I thought he was just another one trying to get something for nothing, but in the next breath he said that he wanted to pay for everything he got. I thought he was a great character, I got on very well with him and he was our greatest ambassador. I saw him play about three times, and I saw him at the first sort of major concert which was at Olympia with Jimi Hendrix, The Move and Pink Floyd. I was very impressed by him as a musician; it was something new to me. I also went out with Ken and saw bands like The Who and Cream”.

From 1966 onwards Marshall enjoyed explosive growth and consolidated their position as the Worlds premier rock guitar amplifier. During the Seventies the number of products offered mushroomed and Marshall found themselves in the forefront not only of guitar amplification but also of bass, PA cabinet and mixer designs, supplying mammoth systems for such bands as Deep Purple and Elton John.

By 1981 Jim decided to end his 15 year association with his distributor Rose-Morris and handle his own distribution. He had by this time drastically reduced the number of models available and concentrated on the newly introduced JCM800 series. It was tough at first not least of all because Britain was in he depths of a recession at the time, but they pulled through and in 1982 Marshall celebrated their 20th anniversary with a special run of white Marshall’s.

In 1984 Marshall was awarded the “Queens Award for Export”, an honour bestowed by the Queen in recognition of their outstanding export achievement over a three year period.

“That award meant a hell of a lot to me personally and to the company because we could use the Queens Award logo on our letterhead as well as in any advertising. It gave us prestige and as far as the employees were concerned was a source of pride.”

In November 1985 Jim was invited to add his hand prints to the “Rock Walk Hall of Fame” in Hollywood along with Leo Fender, Robert Moog, Frank Martin III, Les Paul, Bill Ludwig, Remo Belli, Eddie Van Halen and Stevie Wonder. As Jim explained to the Los Angeles Times:

“At first I thought it was some kind of joke, but as I was putting my hand prints in I thought, ‘Good God! I’ve really arrived!’ On meeting Les Paul for the first time, as I did then, we hit it off straight away and he has a fantastic sense of humour. It was great. He’s somebody I’ve looked up to for many years and I used to play his recordings. I admire anybody who has achieved what he had, especially when the man is such a nice man.”

1987 marked the celebration of Jim’s 50 years in music and 25 years in amplification, and was the catalyst for the introduction of the “Silver Jubilee” range of 50 and 100 Watt amplifiers, looking stunning in their chrome and silver vinyl and which became one of Jim’s personal favourite models.

Marshall’s long awaited JCM900 series were announced in 1990, universally referred to as “The amps that go to 20”, and of course this particular feature was inspired by Spinal Taps’ Nigel Tufnel whose previous Marshalls only went to “11”! Jim appeared alongside Nigel in the hilarious promotional video called “Twenty”, basically a short sequel to the legendary film “This is Spinal Tap” and which is now highly prized by musicians and film buffs alike.

Outside of the music industry, Jim had devoted an increasing amount of time to many charities, including the Variety Club and the London Federation of Boys’ Clubs.

“I’d done well from nothing, all these kids around the World were buying Marshall, so I thought it was about time that I started to put something back in for handicapped and underprivileged children.”

Jim Marshall, circa 2001 Most recently, Marshall have marked their 30th Anniversary in 1992 with two new products, the 30th Anniversary amplifier which was designed to be the ultimate valve head and the JMP1 midi preamp which is easily the most technologically advanced amplifier yet built by the company. To top it all, they have once again won the “Queens Award for Export”.

In one of life’s little ironies, Marshall has now been contracted to build the reissue of the Vox AC30 which started production in early 1993. Tom Jennings, who back in the ’60’s had threatened to sue Marshall, must surely be rolling in his grave!

“The original AC30’s had that particular sound that I could appreciate, even through we were in competition right from the word go with Vox, but the company changed hands so many times that the amplifiers no longer sounded the way they used to. So we’ve recreated that sound.”

When Jim considers where he will take his company from here, he remains quite philosophical:

“Over the next five years we will expand; I’ve just bought another factory. I would say that all we will endeavour to do is to try and improve on what we have done in the past, and I don’t mean purely on the money angle. You can’t take it with you, you can only live in one house and drive one car at a time. It’s the name that means something to me – because it is my name.”

Jim Marshall died Thursday, April 4, 2012 in a London hospice at age 88. Jim’s legacy lives on.

Aloha, Jim. We miss you.

The Marshall Fridge: The Coolest Amp

The Marshall Fridge

Marshall Amps just got a whole lot cooler!

Introducing the brand new Marshall Fridge!

The Marshall Fridge “Web Store” will be opening soon.

According to the site, they are busy preparing to take (what is likely to be) an onslaught of orders very soon at the special introductory price of $299.00 USD.

The estimated ship date for the product is October 01, 2012.

Visit the Marshall Fridge Web Site for more info and to get in line…

I gotta say, this is one of the COOLEST things I have EVER seen!

I am in line for mine!

-GuitarDaddy

 

De Yamaha THR5 en THR10: “Your Third Amp”

Laatst viel trok een artikel over een nieuwe versterkerreeks van Yamaha mijn aandacht. Het ging om de Yamaha THR5 en THR10. “Broodrooster!” was mijn eerste reactie. Maar dat beeld heb ik toch moeten bijstellen.

Yamaha heeft zijn nieuwe THR gitaarversterkers gepresenteerd met de slogan: THR “Your Third Amp”. Yamaha ziet het namelijk zo, je eerste versterker is die enorme toren die je achter je hebt staan tijdens de uitverkochte concerten die je geeft (…), je tweede versterker is de versterker die eigenlijk een kleine versie is van dat monster waar je mee optreedt en de Yamaha THR5 of THR10 moet dan je derde versterker worden waar je op elke plek die je maar wilt mee gitaar kan spelen. Doordat de THR versterkers op stroom en batterijen werken is er dus geen plek meer, behalve onder water dan, waar je andere mensen niet lastig kunt vallen met je ‘talent’.

De THR5 en THR10 lijken op elkaar en hebben beide hetzelfde vermogen namelijk 10W (5W + 5W) maar de THR10 is iets groter (36 x 18 x 14 cm i.p.v. 27 x 16,7 x 12 cm), iets zwaarder (2,8 kg i.p.v. 2.0 kg) en heeft iets meer knoppen en drie versterker types meer aan boord dan de THR5.

De Yamaha THR versterkers hebben een tuner aan boord, kun je doormiddel van een USB kabel aansluiten op je computer en de THR gebruiken om de muziek van iTunes en Youtube mee af te spelen en bovendien hebben ze een AUX ingang waar je een MP3 speler, telefoon of andere geluidsbron op kan aansluiten.
De THR versterkers kan je gebruiken als een audio interface en ook kan je doormiddel van de speciale THR Editor, die je gratis kan downloaden van download.yamaha.com, de versterker types en effecten editten.
Het allerleukste van de THR series vind ik het retro design en de ‘Virtual Tube Illumination’ waarmee je van de versterkers romantische slaapkamerlampjes kan maken.
De THR5 en THR10 worden beide geleverd met een gratis versie van Cubase AI en alle benodigde aansluitsnoertjes. Meer informatie over de THR serie kan je krijgen door de speciale THR pagina’s op de Yamaha website te bezoeken of door het hilarische (kuch, kuch) filmpje hieronder te bekijken.

 

Wat: THR5 en THR10
Van: Yamaha
Prijs:  THR5 199,- euro / THR10 ± 299,- euro
Waar: (online)muziekwinkels
Website: yamaha.com

Bron: MusicGear.nl