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NEW GEAR 16/24: Jackson Soloist SL2, Celestion 100, Line 6 and Roland RD-08 Combos

Jackson has expanded its American superstrat edition with the SL2MG and SL2MGHT models, Foo Fighters frontman's signature Epiphone DG-335 is available on the European market, Celestion celebrates its anniversary with the Celestion 100 speaker and Line 6 has upgraded its Catalyst combo collection with three versions of the CX series. The Cortex Bass brand introduced the new Ganesha Deluxe series, British Ashdown expanded its range with the OriginAL EVO Mini amplifier, Meinl targets drummers with the Compact 10″ MPCSS side snare, Roland introduced the RD-08 digital stage piano and we also recommend a pair of Dunlop pedals from the Wylde Audio collection. Welcome to our regular review of new gear and interesting facts from the world of music.

Jackson American Series Soloist SL2MG and SL2MGHT

Two new Soloist super-string models have been added to the Jackson portfolio, sharing a 3-piece glued maple neck, alder body, a variable radius ebony fingerboard with 24 stainless steel frets, Gotoh MG-T locking tuners, two EMG 81/85 active humbuckers, and the place of origin, the Fender factory in Corona, California. The SL2MGHT version is fitted with a Hipshot 6 – Fixed .175 hardtail bridge, while the SL2MG variant features a Floyd Rose 1500 Series tremolo. Price including Foam-Core case and Dunlop strap locks: the SL2MGHT is about 2500 dollars, the SL2MG about 2600 dollars.

Epiphone DG-335 Dave Grohl

The Foo Fighters frontman's signature combines the design of the semi-hollow Gibson ES-335 and Trini Lopez, which is reflected in the diamond-shaped soundholes of the laminated maple body, the style of the Indian Laurel fretboard markers and the Firebird headstock shape. The one-piece mahogany neck received an elliptical C profile and the strings are anchored in a LockTone tailpiece complemented by a tune-o-metallic bridge and Grover Mini Rotomatic tuners. The guitar uses a pair of Burstbucker 2/3 (USA) humbuckers controlled by a reliable Switchcraft three-position switch and quality CTS potentiometers with Mallory condensers. The Epiphone DG-335 Dave Grohl comes complete with a hard case.

Wah pedals V846 Vintage and VRM1 Real McCoy: Vox returns to the 60s

"1967 is back" declared Vox at the premiere of the reissue of the VRM1 Real McCoy and V846 Vintage, faithful replicas of the brand's first-ever wah pedals. According to the manufacturer, both versions are fitted with "hand-selected and custom-designed parts to fully replicate the original." The V846 Vintage variant, which was modelled by Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton, has an assertive sound with an extended frequency spectrum and an emphasis on the higher bands. The VRM1 Real McCoy version has a more pronounced midrange compared to the V846, the chassis was designed using a 3D scan of the vintage original, and the same attention was paid to the other details. In addition, the wah pedals boast an extremely low current draw (0.54 mA). A limited chrome-plated version of the VRM1LTD is also available.

Anniversary vintage Celestion 100 speaker 

The British loudspeaker manufacturer celebrates its centenary with a special Celestion 100 model, inspired by the early guitar speakers that gave birth to modern music in the 1950s. Like its predecessors, the 12-inch version of the G12 100 is fitted with an Alnico magnet giving the resulting sound a warm character with transparent ringing highs, musical mids and pleasing compression. The 30 W loudspeaker is available in T100 or T101 versions with an impedance of 8 or 16 ohms and a frequency range of 75 Hz to 5 kHz. The sensitivity is 100 dB, which will also be appreciated by owners of now popular small amplifiers, for which the "100" is able to deliver additional sound pressure. A collector's speaker with a stylish grey magnet finish and steel basket costs around 370 euros.

Dunlop Wylde Audio Cry Baby and Rotovibe Chorus/Vibrato

Jim Dunlop is expanding the Wylde Audio range of effects with the reissue versions of the Wylde Audio Cry Baby WA45 wah pedal and the Rotovibe Chorus/Vibrato model with product branding WA357. The effects are being produced as part of Dunlop's 20th-anniversary collaboration with Ozzy Osbourne's backing band guitarist and Black Label Society frontman, whose sound has influenced many playersA replica of a wah pedal the company has designed for Wylde in the past provides a fat tone with an assertive expression suitable for a variety of genresThe Rotovibe has been part of Zakk's pedalboard since 1988 and in this case provides inspiring modulation based on switchable chorus and vibrato, with wave intensity adjustment and smooth control of its speed via a foot pedal. The Wah (approx. 240 euros) is due to be available during April, while the Rotovibe, with a price tag of approx. 450 euros, will probably arrive on the market a month later.

Modelling combo amps Line 6 Catalyst CX

Unlike its predecessors, the updated edition of the Catalyst CX 60 1x12, Catalyst CX 100 1x12 and Catalyst CX 200 2x12 two-channel digital combos received 12 virtual amps with optimized boost and 24 effects derived from the company's flagship Helix series. The amp voicings cover the spectrum from crystal clear sounds, through crunches to modern high-gain registers, while the effects section is divided into units of modulations, delays, pitch/filters and reverbs, each offering 6 items. There is a tap tempo, tuner, MIDI, USB-B card, Output Power function (mute, 0.5 W, 50%, 100%), XLR line output, effects loop, Aux In or Catalyst Edit compatibility.

Ganesha Deluxe Series by Cortex Bass

Four, five and six-string basses are offered in the new Ganesha Deluxe collection from the Swiss company Cortex Bass, which has armed these instruments with a sandwich three-layer body and a bolt-on neck, with a choice of mahogany, several types of maple, padauk, zebrano, wenge and other exotic materials. The 24-fret fingerboard is made of maple or beech, and you can choose from various combinations of humbuckers and Delano single-coils coupled to Glockenkland or Noll active electronics with two- or three-band EQ. The models have been given a Headless ABM 3901 bridge with integrated tuning machines, and the headstock is equipped with ABM 7011 string blockers.

Head Ashdown OriginAL EVO Mini 300 Bass

With 300 watts of power, the new OriginAL EVO Mini 300 is ready to deliver massive sound on stage and in the studio, while maintaining its compact size and straightforward controls. The amplifier features a five-band EQ with +-15dB, Shape function, input sensitivity and master potentiometers, a switch for instruments with passive or active electronics, an effects loop and a line DI output in the form of an XLR connector. There is a mini-headphone jack for quiet practice and a pair of master outputs with a minimum impedance of 4 ohms. In addition, we can find an automatic voltage circuit and an adaptive fan. With a price tag of around 400 pounds, the amplifier comes with a five-year warranty from the manufacturer.

Meinl Compact 10″ Side Snare MPCSS

The new Compact series features an exceptionally bright and clear tone with assertive attack and crisp, concentrated punch at higher tuning, plus smooth resonance at lower tuning, enriching the band sound with a depth and warmth rarely found in instruments of this size. The base of the 10" x 3.5" MPCSS drum is a maple shell complemented by a traditional snare wire, triple-flanged 2mm hoops and a throw-off mechanism for quick string tension control. The versatile model in a matte black finish works great not only within a traditional kit, but its features can appeal to percussionists as well. Price: approx. 125 euros.

Roland RD-08: stage piano at an affordable price

With an official price tag of approx. 1000 euros, the RD-08 stage piano is the most affordable model of the Roland RD series, whose history dates back to the 1980s. The instrument, equipped with a PHA-4 keyboard with 88 keys and a hammer-action, features the SuperNATURAL engine reserved for piano or electric piano sounds, while the other registers, including synths, strings, organ, etc., are based on the ZEN-Core engine, taken from the Roland Fantom and Jupiter-X. A bank of one hundred scenes and over three thousand sounds is complemented by an extensive effects section, a pair of USB ports, mic/line inputs, MIDI Out, a pedal jack and, last but not least, a 2x 6W sound system. With a one-time Lifetime Key purchase for the Roland Cloud, the system can be expanded with the RD-08 upgrade.

Tagy Jackson epiphone vox Line 6 Celestion Cortex Bass Dunlop Ashdown meinl Roland

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For Insounder, I am mainly responsible for the news section and articles covering the gear of well-known musicians. I have been playing guitar in various bands for years and I also teach this beautiful instrument.