What are some changes in guitars and gear in recent years that are actually great?

Discussion in 'General Music Discussion' started by The Mirror, Dec 18, 2017.

  1. The Mirror

    The Mirror SS.org Regular

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    All we talk about in the last few years is how the big companies became shadows of their former self.
    The disaster of what happens to Gibson right now is just a small example for that.

    However what do you think is working absolutely great in the recent times?

    Two big examples for me would be PRS and Fishman.

    Back when I started playing guitar, PRS were basically purely upper class guitars and I was absolutely not able to afford them. Around came the SE-series, which of course needed some time to find it's place.

    Right now however the quality you can get for a guitar that costs below 1000 bucks from the SE series if phenomenal. In fact all my guitars I play are now PRS-SE's.

    And then there is Fishman. They were basically non-existent back in the late 90s / early 00s. People used their acoustic line and that's it. Noone would name them in one sentence with the "big" pick-up lines for metal back then. Now they came back from basically nowhere with the Fluence line that is delivering top-notch stuff.

    And finally a quick shout-out to Framus Guitars. I'm so damn excited what these guys will put out in the next few years. They are definitely on the right track.
     
  2. budda

    budda Guiterrorizer Contributor

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    PRS has improved their hardware a bunch these last few years. Starting with the 5*/0* pickups, then developing a new synthetic nut material, and improving their bridges and tuners. I'm not sure who else has been doing that stuff, though I'm sure someone has.
     
  3. fps

    fps Kit

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    Kemper and Fractal are transforming gigging for musicans and sound exploration for home players.

    Honestly there have never been so many great guitars out there as there are right now, and the development of builders like Skervesen and Daemoness in profile, as well as the lower cost high quality guitars, is definitely worth mentioning. PRS SEs are mighty guitars, I just got a new Mexican Charvel that is rock solid in every way, there is incredible value out there both new and in the used market.

    Evertune is making a big difference for gigging players.

    The next steps will involve fretless, quartertone and other forms of guitar that allow different pitches rather than the 12 note scale, IMO.
     
  4. Mwoit

    Mwoit Lifted By Skin

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    Watching .strandberg* grow from custom shop M2M and getting early endorsements from Misha and Tosin, to blooming into full-scale production from Korea / US / China(?, not sure) / Sweden has been exhilarating. Credit to Ola as a luthier, but also a business man.
     
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  5. Vyn

    Vyn Not a Sparkly Vampire Contributor

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    Amp profiling units (notably Fractal and Kemper) are probably the biggest ones, followed by Evertune and more recently Fishmans (Love them or hate them the tech in those things is wicked). All of the above have made a huge difference to the consistency of live performances.
     
  6. HeHasTheJazzHands

    HeHasTheJazzHands greg rulz ok

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    Import guitars going from shitty weirdo guitars to high-quality instruments that can take years of abuse.

    Digital gear becoming more realistic and, in some cases, more affordable.

    Expensive studio gear and devices shrunken down into multiple-megabyte plugins for your DAW.
     
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  7. Lemonbaby

    Lemonbaby SS.org Regular

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    By far the biggest revolution has happened in recording equipment. 30 years ago, a private person could only afford stuff like a Tascam 4-track tape multitracker and since mid 90s maybe an ADAT 8-track recorder which was still quite expensive. And you still needed a big/expensive mixer, tons of external rack effects and so on. Nowadays, you get a notebook, DAW and interface for 2000 bucks and you're good to go. Besides that, the huge selection of guitars we have today is just amazing.
     
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  8. karjim

    karjim Set the World Afire

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    superior drummer , fractal, torpedo, ez mix, fast internet for tons of gga plug ins. A jackson is still a jackson, 5150 and Mesa are still the best high gain amps for metal
     
  9. marcwormjim

    marcwormjim SS.org Regular

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    Fewer people playing and buying guitars.
     
  10. Descent

    Descent SS.org Regular

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    Nothing really comes to mind, at least not as far as guitars go...price increases and diminishing quality on US guitars.

    The death of Carvin...Marshall, Laney, Peavey, Vox becoming shadows of their former selves, moving to China for cheaper production.

    I guess maybe switching and more amps on the tube side offering USB and reamping/silent recording options.

    Cheap recording equipment and finally stable enough computers that you don't want to commit suicide when you loose your sessions at the end of the recording process.

    Probably biggest improvement to me would be the quality of pre-recorded midi drum samplers, like EZDrummer and others, where it is much easier to create an interesting arrangement with less work...not quite 100% realistic but much better than what I managed to pull of with drum machines a few years back.
     
  11. Descent

    Descent SS.org Regular

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    Doesn't look that way at least where I stand. Quite a few friends got their kids new guitars, amps and are looking to upgrade this Christmas as they've finally saved up enough money for the next move to a better instrument.
     
  12. marcwormjim

    marcwormjim SS.org Regular

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  13. Descent

    Descent SS.org Regular

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    ^ that's what I think Gibson is trying to tell us as they jack up prices again.
     
  14. Lemonbaby

    Lemonbaby SS.org Regular

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    Yeha, that is brilliant! Ehrm, wait... what?:hmmm:
     
  15. Mathemagician

    Mathemagician SS.org Regular

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    VST’s and affordable digital gear sounding amazing now.

    You can download something like TSE and buy some headphones and have a fantastic metal tone.

    When I started playing in 2001 I had a strat knockoff and some old crate bass amp. I thought my boss MT-2 made me sound like Metallica once I first got it.

    Now you can drop ~$500 and approximate the actual black album tone while practicing.
     
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  16. InCasinoOut

    InCasinoOut syncopAZN

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    I think Schecter's been killing it. To me, they were the first company I noticed really keeping their finger on the pulse of what modern guitarists like most of us here want, at a price point that's hard to say no to. To go from all their black or cherry red, abalone-filled, baseball-bat necked guitars in the mid-2000s to the interesting finishes, SS frets, great pickups and comfy neck carves we have today is pretty amazing imo. I don't own any, but I always try them out at the stores and if I wasn't so set on seeking out used Prestige deals I'd probably have a Banshee and/or KM by now.

    Also, small tube-powered lunchbox amps. It wasn't that long ago where I was dreaming about owning a tube amp, but there was such a huge disparity between the solid-state amps that I could only afford and real tube amps that it seemed like it would take forever to own one. Now there's so many great choices for those of us who aren't pursuing live performance and prefer to create music at home, with versatile tube amps that don't shake the house. ...I still bought an expensive, custom-tolexed one anyway though haha.

    Practice amps as well have come such a long way. I absolutely love my THR10, and it might be one of the best gear buys I've made considering how often I use it.
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2017
  17. Floppystrings

    Floppystrings No like the floppy

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    1. VSTs and amp sims (This changes things in a big way.)

    - Dual rectifier head $900
    - Mesa oversized 4x12 $600
    - Ibanez 808 tube screamer $180
    - Boss DD-3 $140
    - Shure SM57 mic $80

    All of that stuff and more can be replaced for free now.
     
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  18. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    I think it really depends on your definition of "amazing sounding". Free VST amps still sound pretty bad on their own, to my ears, unless you're going for that particular sound. Vastly improved? Absolutely. Can replace real gear? Nah, not a chance IMO.
     
  19. bhakan

    bhakan SS.org Regular

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    I feel like there are three big ones:

    1) Digital. This goes without saying and is pretty self explanatory. Modern modelling is amazing and only getting better. Even though I'm a tube amp guy there's just no denying how many possibilities that tech opens up.

    2) Imports. Even the Squier stuff nowadays is fantastic. I had a Gibson SG that I never bonded with. When I was replacing it I almost bought a Squier J Mascis Jazzmaster that honestly felt more solid than my Gibson.

    3) Pedals. The outburst of small, boutique builders has created so many weird, unique pedals that make sounds we've never really heard before. Sure, it's also lead to a million redundant tube screamers and klones, but some of sounds you can make with pedals nowadays are a breath of fresh air for guitar playing.
     
  20. Mathemagician

    Mathemagician SS.org Regular

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    It’s relative, but my idea of inexpensive is my rackmount Helix. $1300 or whatever for every time I could want? You couldn’t spend $4,000 in 1990 to emulate (well) what a single piece of gear can do today.

    And have you tried the $50 TSE Vst? It shouldn’t be that cheap. It only does a. 5150 but that’s enough for a lot of metal guys.
     
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