photos: Clément Topping
(1994) / Laurence Labat (2002, 2006) / Mark Miller (1997)
/ Bang on a Can (2010)
those gear-heads who are interested /
pour les mordus de l'équipement qui s'interessent....
seem to like Godin guitars a bit more than is reasonable... /
il semble que j'aime pas mal les guitares Godins ...
of Lists: Guitars / Amps / Pedals / Studio Gear
14 guitars, 9 amps, 26 pedals as of 2016, so - trying to take
a year off from G.A.S.
Acquisition Syndrome - in case you did not know...)
2017 - will be another "Year of No New Guitar Gear!"
In 2016, I had to re-purchase my whole touring rig
because of a theft on the road, and I added a few more backup
pedals and goodies in the process. Plus, now with 2 Eventide
H9 pedals, I can pretty much just download whatever sounds I
need. Two new Godins in March 2017 - ordered in 2016 (ok, it
become four! - but I got rid of two others, so it
balances)...so, as you can see, there is no excuse to say "I
really need (name gizmo...) in order to do (whatever
Trying to be rational - I'm hoping this will should hold for
the next 365 days!
I am the original owner of all 8
Godins (received new in stated year).
MAIN AXE - Godin PASSION RG-3- prototype
"Passion RG-3" #1
(22 frets, chambered
spruce body with maple cap) - 2008 -
Maple neck (25.5") with Rosewood fingerboard,
double cutaway "Strat"-style body...
- I have one of only three protoypes they made in the H/H
configuration, rather than the final S/S/S version. Amazing
workmanship and wood, very cool sounds with the H/H set-up. I
put in the then new (2008) Seymour Duncan P-Rails pickups
(2 asymmetrical Alnico 5 single coils joined to be a
humbuckers). With 2 mini-switches, this gives 12 different
sounds all through passive electronics (changes in
impedance). The best sounding/playing guitar I have ever
owned. I call it the "Godin Passion H/H Convertible " - though
the model is not available commercially. John McGlaughlin used
this rare, prototype model for several years,
though he used the stock pick-ups, and the MIDI out.
THIS GUITAR HAS NOW BEEN MADE AVAILABLE COMMERCIALLY -
(without P-Rails, just regular humbuckers) as the Godin
Godin "Summit Classic CT Convertible"
(22 frets, chambered Spanish cedar body, maple cap, mahogany
neck with Richlite fingerboard, 24.75" scale, single cut, 2 X
P-Rail pickups, 2 mini-switches for P-Rails) - 2017
Just took delivery of this - I am in love. I've never really
bonded with the LP style guitar, but Godin has made the
perfect version of this classic. More airy and transparent
sounding, but still with the big, dense powerful sound if you
need it. Balance is incredible - every note in every register
to rings and sings, is never shrill or muddy. This uses my
absolute favourite SD pickups - P-Rails (like Passion RG-3
mentioned above, my main touring guitar). So in addition to
great traditional humbucking sounds, you can click-in P-90s or
single coils. Singles will not replace your Strat (gets close
with HDR engaged!), but have a very cool sound on this
shorter-scale, mahogany guitar. Super ergonomic, weighs just
a bit over 7 lbs, tummy cut. Within 48 hours it has become my
#2 guitar, and giving my #1 a serious run for its money.
And, the good folks at Godin made me one in a custom colour:
the beautiful Creme Brulé! Production Convertibles only come
in Goldtop (which I really, really do not like), so they
spoiled me and made this one-off. Thanks - serious customer
Godin "Passion RG-3" #2
(22 frets, chambered cedar body with mahogany cap) - 2010
neck (25.5") with Rosewood fingerboard, double cutaway
I discovered that Godin had made another prototype of my
favorite guitar (see above), with slightly different woods.
So I bought it, to have a back up. Put on a Trem-King whammy
bar (not a great whammy, but a nice big sound as a fixed
bridge, don't use it much as a whammy) and my favorite Seymour
Duncan P-Rails pick-ups. Another "Godin
Passion H/H Convertible " - sounds just a bit
different than my #1 guitar because of the different woods,
but still an amazing instrument.
"Montreal: Premiere" #1
(22 frets, semi-hollow
body, set-neck. 24.75" scale, cherry-wood body, mahogany
neck, spruce centre block with "breath through" sound
chambers, stop-tail piece) - 2013.
is a new model (2013) and this guitar is AMAZING. 24.75"
scale, single-cut, semi-hollow puts it in the
335/339/137/135 camp, but it is so much more flexible, has a
much better neck joint, and the choice of wood gives
it an incredible sound. A little more open sounding than the
Gibson semis, probably because of the chambered spruce rather
than solid mahogany centre block. Cherry is somewhere between
maple and mahogany, so you can push this guitar easily from
pure jazz (Benson/Metheny) to Scofield and well into serious
blues and rock (no metal). I now have a tough time choosing
between RG-3 #1 and this guitar, it is that much fun to play!
However, they sound and feel very, very different, so the
context usually makes the choice for me.
"Montreal Premiere" #2 - version: Supreme
(22 frets, semi-hollow body,
24.75" scale, cherry-wood body with maple top, set maple
neck with inlays, spruce centre block with "breath through"
sound chambers, trapeze tail piece, Seymour Duncan pickups
and HDR boost circuit, sunburst) - 2017
Yes, I bought a SECOND one - I had a 2nd regular Montréal
with a Bigsby, but sold it to buy this new upgrade. This is
probably the best "jazz" guitar I've ever - stunning jazz
tones, but it can be much more. The new neck, maple with a
Richlite fingerboard, has a very solid feel, incredibly
focused notes with unbelievable balance. You want snappy,
you want warm, you want something in between? It has it all
- I think the SD pickups probably help (Jazz and Custom).
The boost circuit means it can actually rock-out as well,
but honestly, that is not why I use this one - it's about
beautiful, warm, transparent tones. The finish is utterly
gorgeous, as well. Great block inlays on the neck put it in
the seriously high-end semi-hollow category, in terms of
look. Has taken over my my other Montréal as my main
semi-hollow. Sorry, Montréal #1!
Godin "Summit Classic HB"
(22 frets, chambered Spanish cedar body,
maple cap, mahogany neck with Richlite fingerboard, 24.75 "
scale, single cut, Alnico II and '59 pickups) - 2017
Another take on the LP body - exactly like the Summit
Convertible (see above), but with 2 more traditional vintage
(slightly lower) output SD HB pickups. A bit less dense and a
bit brighter than the P-Rails humbuckers, but still with tones
of depth and bottom end. What I love about this guitar is the
simplicity - 2 pickups, 3-way switch, vol/tone, that's it.
(Well, ok, it has the HDR as well). I can see this blending a
bit better with complex ensembles than the Convertible HB
sound (which could be almost too massive in certain
contexts). And the colour - Burgundy. The most visually
striking guitar I have ever owned. Classy and subtle, but you
cannot take you eye of the instrument. Note: both these
Summit single cuts come in at a very shoulder-friendly 7 lbs -
take that, Les Paul!
Godin "Passion Custom
frets, 25.5" scale, maple neck with rosewood fingerboard,
single cut, chambered Spanish Cedar body with Swamp Ash top,
1 P-Rail (neck), 1 Single coil (bridge), 5-way switch,
tremolo arm, HDR circuit) - 2017
Looks like a Tele, sounds totally original. The snap of the
long scale neck and maple wood, the warmth of the Spanish
Cedar and the P-Rail. The combined single-coil sounds are not
quite Tele, nor Strat - just great single coil sounds - let's
say great Godin sounds. In truth, I'll be swapping out the
bridge pickup for an SD stack plus Tele (STK-T2b, if you must
know) - humcancelling blade pickup, and re-wiring the switch
to have more humbucking options (I hate hum). I'll put the
P-90 sound on a push-pull (tone), to have one true single-coil
sound, but the 5-way will give my 5 combinations of various
coils for humbucker and various splits (somewhat akin to the
old PRS 5-way switch). It's very subtle, but I would say this
is the most original sound guitar I own - utterly it's own
voice. Quite a bit warmer than the RG-3 Passions (different
woods, single cut). And a floating termolo bar - this thing
has everything. News on the pickup upgrade in a month of so.
(22 frets, maple fretboard and neck, maple/poplar body,
S/S/H) - 2011
For certain sounds, that special transparency of a maple
fretboard is essential. So I got this very affordable Godin,
set it up with light strings (.10 - .46), put in some
Seymour Duncans (Little '59 - neck, Classic Stack Plus -
middle, both humbucking single coils, and a Custom humbucker
in bridge - neck and bridge with series/parallel switches),
added Gotoh locking tuners and voila – an amazingly rich yet
transparent S/S/H-style guitar with the added flexibility of
the Godin High Definition Revoicer (HDR), fully humbucking
single coils, and that amazing Godin woodwork! It's basic
sound is a bit darker than a Strat (probably the different
woods), but the use of the HDR button on clean and slightly
overdriven sounds gets you right into that "clacky" Strat
I have owned many other Godins - Flat Five, Freeway
Floyd, Icon, first generation Summit, Montreal, LG
Signature, xtSA, LGXT, Artisan,
obscure early S/S/H unfinished S-Style, they all
played very well and sounded great. However, I only have so
much room to store guitars so I am just keeping my
absolute "best" pieces.
That will make 8 Godins - 4 long scale, 4 shorts scale,
some single cuts, some double cuts, some with whammy bars,
some fixed bridge, some semi-hollow, some chambered, some
solid, etc...with the exception of a full-on Floyd Rose
equipped metal machine or 17" hollow jazz box with floating
neck pickup, I have it covered!
In fact, I can even
fake the two above mentioned guitars pretty well, in a
Godin does not make 25"
6-string basses, or 50-year old vintage acoustic
"SE Semi-Hollow Custom"
(22 frets, mahogany body, natural maple top
veneer, 25" scale).
2007 model (hey, that makes it "vintage" - first year of
issue for this model!) - bought in 2013. So, in 2013 I
sold my high-end PRS semi-hollow because I was not using
it at all, as well as using the cash to finance the new
computer. I've had several PRS's in the past (Standard,
Mira, Semi-hollow Ltd.), and I am intrigued with the PRS
25" scale length (Godin only does the 2 traditional
scales of 24.75" and 25.5"). That 25" scale really is
something different - kind of a "warmed-up Fender" or a
"snappy Gibson". Plus, I wanted a double-cut semi-hollow
(which Godin doesn't make) without paying a fortune
(Gibson 335/339, not to mention Collings, etc...). I
found a decent deal on eBay for this used PRS SE Semi
Hollow. The scary thing is that I enjoy the feel and
sound of this budget guitar way more than the $2,800
high-end model I used to own! And it is only a bit of a
joke about it being "vintage" - I actually think the
aesthetic design of the early models was considerably
classier than the current models. Simple dot inlays,
nicer, simpler tops. To me, the design of the older
ones said" "I am an affordable, quality guitar", the
newer ones are saying a bit more: "I am an affordable,
quality guitar but I'm trying to look a bit more
I also put my extra Seymour Duncan P-Rail pickups in
the this guitar. The stock pick-ups are good, but those
SD P-Rails are special!! This gives me access to
humbucker, P-90 and single coil sounds on the 25" scale
with a traditional mahogany body, quite different than
my Godin S-style guitars. The humbucker and P-90 sounds
are spectacular (fat and warm but with great clarity),
single coils sounds are functional (but nothing special)
in this guitar.
"SE Singlecut Tremolo"
mahogany body, black,
top, 25" scale, tremolo).
I realised I did not actually own a standard "rock" guitar -
singlecut, mahogany+maple, 2 humbuckers...that most basic of
instruments! But I liked this little twist on the
principal: 25" scale and a tremolo. Also got this for a
crazy low price....changed the pickups for some covered
Seymour Duncans (covers for that little bit of high cut!) I
had lying around: Jazz (neck) and Custom (bridge), added
Schaller locking tuners. Voila - for less than $600, I got
a killer rock guitar - simple, basic black, 3-way switch, 1
volume, 1 tone, series/parallel push-pull switch on each
pickup for 2 output levels - just shut up and play. A little
brighter and snappier than a "LP", for sure (slightly
thinner body, 25" scale, tremolo), but a monster with a fair
bit of flexibility and subtlety, if desired. Really fun to
(24 frets, black, 25.5" scale, double-cutaway S-style
body, trans-trem) - circa 1991
H-(EMG 89: non-standard)-S-H (EMGs) Toured the world
with this in the 1990s - very tough, sounds good if a
bit less traditional. The original configuration is
S/S/H, but I replaced the neck pickup with am EMG
splittable humbucker with gives the guitar a better
clean, warm sound, when needed. The 25.5" scale makes 24
frets almost usable! An untraditional guitar
sound, not really a crunchy "blues-rock" thing, but very
good with processing, quite good for clean sounds, and
high gain. Great to have a guitar that does not need to
be checked baggage, with a neck that will not twist,
break or budge, sometimes.
(20 frets, sunburst) - circa 1965: bought in the
added: non-standard "clear" pickguard, added "cutaway",
new bridge for better intonation
recorded with this in the 80s and 90s, it sounds amazing in
Too bad I don't play
it more these days...
SO, WHY NO GUITAR CLASSICS IN THE COLLECTION?
Squier / Fender Bass VI - 2014
(21 frets, 30" scale, 3 single coils, 4 P-U switches,
basswood body, sunburst)
In Instruments of Happiness (IoH - the all-guitar
group), Antoine Berthiaume uses an older MIJ Fender Bass VI
for some pieces. It sounded so great I decide I wanted one.
And then I discovered Fender has a budget version - a
Squier, made in Indonesia, very, very affordable, it sounds
really good. What could I say? It will be used for fun, and
also in the context of my multiple guitar pieces for the IoH
Quartet, IoH Orchestra (20 players)
and IoH EXTREME (100 players).
ION (Alesis) - incredibly cheap Strat copy
I need an incredibly cheap guitar to abuse for a project in
2008, so I got this $40 guitar.
It feels just like $40 guitar - crude, baseball bat neck;
terrible, jagged fret job; awful wood; awful action;
seemingly tin-foil hardware (the input jack broke the second
time I plugged it in!). What can you say - $40? However,
surprisingly, it sounds half-decent, if you can ignore the
60 cycle hum!
you should ask that!
my younger days I had a few classics (Les Paul Custom,
ES-335, ES-335-12, ES-120), but, in fact, I always failed at
sounding like any of my guitar idols. In retrospect, this
was very useful (though frustrating at the time), as it
forced me to find my own sound and create my own unique
music. By late 80's I knew I needed to find "other"
to find another sound. I had an 1985 PRS Standard for
several years (when they were still unknown - used on albums
and touring from 1990 to 1995 ), but I found it a bit too
dense and aggressive at times. This is probably why they
eventually became so popular with hard rock and metal bands
- that slightly in-your-face tone!
Then I had (and still
own) a Steinberger GM4T - quite a different sound, almost
too "clean", used it from 1995 to 2005 (CDs and tours). I
have also had a few PRS guitars that were nice. But when I
found Godins in 2005, I knew we were getting close to what I
wanted - a new platform that was clearly linked to the great
guitar tradition, but one that was not loaded with historic
connotations and pre-imagined sounds.
I spent 5 years
experimenting with different pickups in relation to
different woods and different body shapes and I now have a
clear image of what I want to hear, and how to get it, and
it sounds like me. The "24 Frames" (2010 - 2011) triple CD
project is the best example, and is in fact a result of, all
this search for my ideal sound.
I love a great Strat or Les Paul sound, but
that's for Eric, Stevie-Ray, Duane,
and Jimmy P., not for me"
offically run out of guitar storage room in my studio, so we
are into the
"one in, one out"
principle for the collection from now on!!
My four main Godins (RF-3s and Montreal Premieres) are all
strung with D'Adarrio
- .49, as is the PRS. The "rock guitars" are a bit lighter:
Velocity, Core-90 and Steinberger are all strung 10. -
.46. Gibson acoustic is .11 - .49 as well.
I had tendonitis many years ago on my left hand and I can't
quite go up to .12 any more!
and maintainance done by Montreal guitar gurus Al
Gunn and Pierre Laporte.
a 10 years from 2006 to 2016 I tried many different amp and
speaker combinations, looking for "the
sound" - the perfect balance of warm but
detailed and transparent.
now have it: an all-tube PTP vintage combo stereo pair with
10" speakers (Fender, 6V6), and a small selection
of amp heads, all capable of being loud
but very quiet: a solid state/tube hybrid (Evans), pure 6L6
all-tube bliss (Groove Tubes), pure EL34 all-tube bliss
(Koch Twintone), a micro-head (Carvin, with EL84s), using a
variety of cabinets. Added a few solid states as well - with
a bit of research, you can actually find really good SS
also play almost exclusively solo, or with chamber groups or
orchestras, almost never with "bands" (no drums, no PAs), so
I am looking for a big, real, 3-d guitar sound without
needing anything approaching "guitar/rock-band" levels.
Which is not to say this stuff can't get loud if necessary
- it is just that quiet and transparent are my priorities.
Super Champ (Paul Rivera era) - 1983/84 (6V6
power tubes) - bought: 2007
upgraded Eminence "Lil Buddy" 10" hemp-cone 50 watt
to be able to switch from Class AB (18 watts) to
cathode-biased pseudo-Class A.
had the bright capacitor cut and boosted the bass response
of the tone circuit so
sounds big and warm at all volumes. Recording out is now an
8ohm speaker out,
it can get fairly loud (but still clean and quiet, if I
want!) when I plug in
extra 12" speaker. Sounds like the worlds smallest Twin
Reverb (perhaps a slight exaggeration, but it sounds awesome
for 18 watts and a single 10" speaker).
I run this in stereo sometimes, with my Evans and a 10"
Hendriken cabinet, like a great stereo Vibrolux - that
amazing 2 X 10" speaker sound, but with more space!
maintainance done by Montreal amp guru Rick Onslow.
AH200 hybrid (head) - bought: 2008
interesting take on solid state power amp - with a tube
preamp (3 X 12AT7 tubes) and 200 watts (Class D), with
really flexible EQ. I often plug it into a Lopoline cabinet
with an Eminence Delta light 1 X 12". The whole thing is
astonishingly light weight (head - 5 lbs, cabinet - 18 lbs)
for the power and clarity. Sounds equally good, if a bit
darker, into the Raezers Edge cabinet. I simply cannot
believe the quality of this amp - ABSOLUTELY quiet, amazing
EQ - from very dark and jazzy to almost country bright
(without the "icepick" - thanks!). Even has a pretty cool
flanger / chorus circuit in the back (switch on or off), and
you can adjust the reverb dwell (time plus balance) - very
flexible!! Almost as loud as a Twin, if you want/need that
kind of thing. This model is now discontinued, and is only
available as a pure solid-state (see below!).
Evans AH200 - solid state (head) - bought
used: 2014 (from around 2008)
Basically, the solid state version of the AH200 - pretty
much the same sound as above (but not quite...that tube
pre-amp!), but just a bit less fragile, a bit less
expensive, a back-up, plus it this gives me the Stereo Evans
Effect - 400 watts of clean, warm, detailed, punchy sound at
Quilter 101 mini head (2016 - new)
Bought this in 2016 - it weighs 2 lbs (yes, 2 lbs) - 100
watts in clean mode (50 watts - "dirty" modes), very small
and very, very portable (fits in a big guitar gig bag
pouch!). No reverb, but it sounds and feels great, I don't
miss the reverb much (it has an FX loop, so there are always
reverb pedals). Somewhat quirky EQ configuration (Tri-Q
mid-control section and a Hi-cut, not standard T/M/B) - but
you can get pretty much what you need, if you take a bit of
time to listen (they controls are interactive). Overdrive
and distortion are very credible: ok - not quite as amazing
as my favourite Koch head or Fulltone pedal, but very
usable. Live, most of my overdrive comes from pedals, in
high quality analogue solid state, not modelling (I'm not a
fan of the modeling amps I've heard and played, admittedly
only low or mid-level examples, no Kempers...)
Given the size, sound and construction quality, and cost
(very affordable), I predict this little amp showing up at
lots of rehearsals and small gigs in the guitar world. I
know it will be showing up at a lot of my rehearsals
("schlepp" factor). Sounds great with all my cabinets.
Groove Tubes Soul-o 45 - mid 1990's (head - 6L6
power tubes) - bought: 2009
somewhat rare (rumor has it only 400 were built), all-tube,
hand-wired but PC-board based 6L6 head rated at about 45 -
50 watts, almost totally clean sound, 1 channel with volume,
treble, mid, bass, presence, reverb and master volume. Very
effective and flexible EQ. Designed and built by tube amp
guru Aspen Pittman. Gives that BIG 6L6 tube sound with no
hiss, no distortion - just very slight crunch at maximum
volume - but it sounds great with pedals!. It is in a
smallish, short chassis head that weighs only 32 lbs....I
plug it into one of my Lopoline or Raezers Edge. Mostly for
bigger halls - it sounds huge!
Koch Twintone - early 2000's (model I -
head - EL34 power tubes) - bought: 2012
I had a Twintone combo in the early 2000's and loved it, but
I found it a bit heavy and bulky, and it did not have as
much low end at low volumes as I would have liked (open
back). But it was very nice, and quiet, the cleans are
special (that slight EL34 mid-range "hollowness" is great)
and the distortion channel is incredibly flexible - from the
lightest crunch overdrive to truly heavy, dense distortion.
So when a head came up on eBay for a crazy low price - I did
it! I had to repair the reverb, but it still came out to
less than 1/2 price of a new one. Plugged into a Raezers
Edge Twin 8 it sounds gorgeous. Yes, it is a PC-board, not
PTP, but if it sounds great and is reliable, does it really
Carvin V3M - 2013 (4X EL84 power tubes)
- used - bought: 2014
Seems like the best compromise for an affordable,
light-weight but powerful all-tube head (50 watts - 19
lbs!). As a back-up, and I was looking for an EL84-based
amp (though, in fact, they are probably my least favourite
tube...), just to have a different sound world from my other
tube amps. The cleans are very good (with the right EQ -
getting rid of a bit of that EL84 "honk"), and it is very
quiet, which is what I am looking for. Overdrives can be a
bit over the top, but can be made to behave by using the
right EQ and very low drive settings (under 4). The amp is
voiced a bit dark (which basically suits me) but the EQ is
very, very flexible, so you can get lots of sounds - just
flick that bright switch!. Does not really sound like a
"fake Fender", "fake Mesa" etc - it is it's own thing. The
cleans are the best part of the amp, to me. I tend to use
my Fulltone and other pedals for overdrive/distortion in
concert and on tour, in any case.
Yamaha JX55 - solid state, 50 watts, 1 X
12" open-back - 1980 (bought - 2014)
I stumbled across one of these at a rehearsal space recently
and was amazed! Clean, warm, articulate, quiet, great EQ
(including a great "FAT" switch, which adjusts the overall
mid-range character of the amp!) - and the thing still
worked perfectly after 35 years! Found one on eBay - they
are a bit rare, but quite affordable. It needed a cleaning
(it is a 35 year old amp!), but it works perfectly and is
great for jazz, chamber music, basically anything that is
built around a clean sound (or pedals). Overdrive option is
not great (but not awful), but that is not the point. Turns
out these amps, and the follow-up Yamaha G series, are
underground cult amps - the best affordable solid state amps
around. They beat the current crop of affordable modeling
amps hands down (I've tried a few - will not be going there
again - see below!). No tubes: no transportation worries
(only 32 lbs for 50 watts), no microphonic issues, no
meteorological worries about -30 degree temperatures (I do
live in Montréal). A keeper.
2 X Lopoline custom 1 X 12" Speaker Cabinets
had these made a few years ago - using very light-weight but
strong Italian Poplar and an Eminence Delta Lite neodymium
speakers. They weigh only 18 lbs. each and can handle 125
watts. The speaker baffles have a 15 degree angle upwards,
so even when placed on the ground you can hear some direct
sound, and I can run them open-or-closed back. A very
balanced sound - you can really push them in whatever
direction you want - dark or bright. Plugged into my Super
Champ (which has an internal hemp-based 10" speaker), you
get a really rich sound, due to the asymmetrical speaker
sizes and cone materials. Makes for a cute little 18-watt
mini-stack as well.
X Raezers Edge Speaker Twin 8 Cabinets (used)
I started using this in December 2011 - I got one for a good
price on eBay.
impressive - 2 X 8" heavy duty speakers in a ported
cabinet, rated at 250 watts, they can handle anything you
through at them! I really like the ported sound - somewhere
between closed and open back, with huge low-end response,
and 2 speakers in a cabinet always gives a more complex and
3-D sound. Did I mention it is not much bigger than a 1 X
12" cab, and weighs only 30lbs? Found another one on a
blow-out sale for 30% off, so now I can run them in stereo.
I have re-wired one 2 X 8" cabinet so it can run mono (4
ohms - 250 watts) or stereo (2 x 8 ohms - 125 watts per
side) - which means I can have a true stereo rig with one,
30 lbs, portable cabinet.
1 X Henriksen 1 X 10" Ported Speaker Cabinet (used)
I wanted a really small, really
light, really high quality speaker - saw this on
eBay - an older model (a bit smaller and lighter than the
current model), very portable, with a port, so it has more
low-end and openness than a small closed-back 10" cabinet
normally would. Also a rare 4 ohm cabinet, which means the
Evans head is running at a full 200 watts, so I get huge
headroom. Works very well with Quilter mini-head as well -
even smaller and lighter! Basically this gives me top
quality sound and volume in a very small 15lb cabinet -
ideal for rehearsals, little gigs, etc . Weighs less and is
smaller than most cheapo modelling amps and sounds about
Dirty Little Secrets.....
For a while I had a Roland Cube 40 -
ok, but could never find my sound, it was always a bit too
brittle, no matter what I did with the EQ. An awkward shape
to carry, as well. (Note: new range of Cube 40's are a bit
better - sound and shape!) Then I swapped it for a used but
relatively new Fender Champion 40 modeling
amp. Very, very lackluster tone - NOTHING like my 1980s
Fender Super Champs. Got rid of it in a few months. I
quickly decided to get the above-mentioned Henriksen 10"
speaker to solve the issue of highly portable sound. Cost
more, but the sounds quality is SO MUCH better.
really, really simple rehearsal needs and ultimate
portability I now have a VOX MINI5 - 5
watts, 6.5" speaker, 7lbs, can run on batteries and is a
functional sounding amp with basic effects. Sounds
ok/livable (for a 5 watt $160 modeling amp....) - hey, at
least I don't hate the sound, that's a start.
actually spent the money on some high-end guitar cables
(Evidence Audio and also some George Ls) and I can honestly
say I hear a difference but it is quite subtle and I
play solo a lot, the
difference in a band situation might be less obvious. I will
also use whatever cord is hanging around....
- I rent: 2 X Fender Hot Rod Deluxe / Fender Deluxe
Reverb / Fender Twin Reverb
use a pedal board - they are too big and bulky to fly
with (extra bags cost money and have to be carried
around airports!). My 12 main pedals and all cables fit
in a ThinkTank "Airport Commuter" padded backpack
(designed for high-end cameras), which comes on-board
and can then go on my back once I arrive. Weighs about
23 lbs (just at the border of carry-on weight), but
convenient for travel. Longer set-up time
(re-patching), but this is an acceptable compromise.
This "open" set-up also means I very easily just pull a
few pedals for smaller shows without a huge re-patching
job of a board.
used on current and upcoming projects
I've had serious reliability issues with some newer TC
stuff, and try to no longer use it!
(With AnalogMan mod)
Boss SD-1 (with Keeley mod)
Boss BD-2 (with Keeley mod)
Electro-Harmonix Pitch Fork
Eventide H9 effects pedal (unbelievable sound quality!) -
with 12 extra algorithms
One of the H9s has the Barn3 OX9 auxiliary switch add-on
for more flexibility
X Digitech Timebender - delay/harmoniser/looper pedal (now
Digitech - Jaman Express XT looper (stereo)
TC Electronics - Ditto x2 stereo looper (stereo)
TC Electronics - Corona Chorus (stereo)
G2.1.nu (small multi-FX unit)
- 2011 - 2012 tours - 24 Frames
G3X (slightly bigger and significantly better multi-FX
- 2013 onwards
Zoom G3 (smaller version of G3X with no controller pedal -
for smaller shows, and backup)
Zoom MS100BT - all the sounds of the G3X in an even smaller
stomp-box: cool backup!
Fulldrive 3 - Orange model - from the Fulltone Custom
21 SansAmp GT-2 - distortion
Giga-Delay/Looper Twin Pedal (now discontinued)
X Boss PS-3 (delay/pitch shifter - "legendary" - new
versions don't have all the wild
delay/pitchshift/feedback sounds like these ones!)
(both old and new version) + slides (glass and metal)
HoTone Soul Express - mini volume/wah/expression
Volume pedal (Boss FV-50)
Expression pedal (Boss EV-5 - for Timebender and/or the
Electronic Polytune tuner pedal
Power supply: Yankee PS-M2 - made in Poland, 120/240 - has
every conceivable output!
My Yankee (which was great) got stolen! Have replaced it
with the new Strymon Ojai power supply - very small, very
powerful, very light - I have 2 (backup!). No AC, but I just
use the AC adapter for the Timebender, and am moving to 2 H9
units (instead of Timebender), in any case.
stuff I sometimes use (or have used in the past)
Pedal (Ernie Ball)
ProCo RAT - distortion
GT-8 multi-effects processor
Zoom 2100 multi-effects (small floor pedal with tons of
stuff: late 90's touring!)
The "legendary" Boss SE-70 multi-effects (used
to have 3, kept one, in case!)
for "Strange Atttractors" CD and
tours (1997 - 1999)
Roland GP-100 guitar preamp
2 X BOSS SE-70 multi-effects
Rocktron MIDIMate controller / or /
Lake Butler Midi Mitigator (contoller)
and in the 1980s /early 1990s!
2 X Roland SDE 3000 delays
Ibanez HD1000 delay/harmoniser
Yamaha R1000 digital reverb
Rocktron Intellifex - multi-effects
Symetrix SX201 preamp
DBX 163X compressor
250RL (head version of the famous "lunch box"amp)
Demeter H series Stereo Tube Mic Preamp/DI
RME Fireface 400 digital audio interface
MONITORS: Dynaudio BM5 speakers
HEADPHONES: Sennheisser 650, 570 and 450 HD
CONTROL: Mackie "Big Knob" studio command
MICS: Sennheiser 421 (2), Audiotechnica AT825
(electret condenser stereo - for remotes)
2 X Mackie 1202 VLZ Pro mixer
Marantz portable DAT (1991 - still works perfectly!) -
kept as a back-up unit...
Hardware Sampler: Yamaha A4000 (with 128 MB RAM) -
kept as a back-up unit...
COMPUTERS: 2013: Mac Mini 2.3 Ghz i7 chip,
with 1.2 TB fusion drive, 16 MB ram, a La Cie 4 TB
external drive, and a Mac Superdrive (CD+DVD burner)
MONITORS: Dell 24" flat screen with built in
"soundblock" speakers (main screen)
Packard 24" flat screen LP2465 (for notation work)
Mac Book Pro - 2.16 Ghz, 2 GB RAM, with 100 GB hard drive
La Cie 500GB FW hard drive (7200) + OWC 2.5" 100GB FW hard
+ G-Factor 750 MB FW800 hard drive (7200) (portable
audio - Digital Performer 8.0 / Atliverb - GREAT
notation - Sibelius 6 - I LOVE this one!
SAMPLES: Garriton Personal Orchestra 4 /
Wallander NotePerformer for Sibelius
Yamaha YPP200 digital piano (88 keys-just for composing)
P-85 (weighted 88 keys for rehearsals, electronic projects -
sounds great, weighs 25 lbs!)
or ProTools HD192
Remote Recording: RME Fireface 400 / RME 800 to Mac Book
On-stage monitors / rehearsal speakers: Yamaha MSR 100 (4)
Mastering Monitors: Genelec 1030 / Dynaudio BM5
Pre-amps: Focusrite, Avalon, Manley, Studer, Neve,
Mics: AKG, Neumann, Schoeps, Shure, Sennheiser,
Earthworks, Countryman (voice)
My sound tech/recording engineer for the past 25 years has
been Morris Apelbaum (Silent Sound Studio,
Montreal). He has the most incredible and ever-evolving
range of mics and pre-amps, I can't keep up. I don't even
try. But it always sounds good.