Friday, December 4, 2009

Cleaning out my analog closet

I feel like I should post since Karl was nice enough to link my blog and say kind things about it! The internet doesn't need another "sorry I haven't posted in a while" blogs so I'll just skip past that.

Life has brought about a lot of changes this year. I just became and uncle and I started dating the most amazing woman I've ever met. That wasn't enough change so I decided to get engaged, start planning a wedding, and look for a house for us to buy as well. Whoa.

In terms of guitar, the biggest change will be moving to a smaller house. Currently I live with 3 other guys who are all musicians and we have a 20' x 20' room full of recording gear, drumsets, bass rigs, guitars and amps, a fender rhodes and a hammond B3. I have lots and lots of stuff in that room. I won't have room for it and honestly I don't use a lot of it so I've been selling stuff off. I'll be taking my amp, three electrics, an acoustic, my pedalboard (plus a few extra pedals), and the rhodes with. Everything else is going.

In the downsize, one of the things that crossed my mind was selling my amp, cab, and pedalboard and replacing it with a digital modeling system. I couldn't bring myself to do it, though. Not because I'm against modelers but because I really like what I'm getting with my current gear. Why fix it if it ain't broken?

However, I did decide two things: 1) If I didn't have any gear and I was starting from scratch I would go digital and 2) when my amp dies I will most likely switch. My amp is 38 years old, it will die someday and I have it insured so even if it just dies of old age I'll still get the appraised value, score!

So, what should I get if my amp died today or hypothetically I didn't own any gear?

I have a few criteria:

1) It has to sound good. Not "people falling to their knees that single note sounded so sweet" good. Maybe 90% that good.

2) I has to keep presets and have a simple layout so with two or less buttons I can bring up a new song with a new tempo.

3) It has have great delay, light overdrive, tube screamer (solo), and high gain - or let me input my Tim, TS808, and OCD.

4) It has to model a Superbass/Bassman and AC30 well. Bonus if it models a bluesy fender.

5) It has to be significantly cheaper and/or easier to transport than my current set up. Otherwise, what's the point?

6) Has line out to the sound board and the option to go out to a solid state power amp with a speaker.

Components I would look at:

1) Axe-fx
2) Line6 M13
3) Line6 M9
4) Line6 EchoPro (rack delay)
5) Digidesign eleven-rack
6) POD (maybe..)

Any recommendations?!?