One of the missed Winter NAMM products is this new drum machine by Alesis released after the more than 15 years success of the SR-16. The Alesis SR-18 Drum Machine sound range covers almost any kind of music and has some interesting drums, hits, electronic drums, percussion and bass sounds.
The Alesis SR-18 Drum Machine features 24-voice polyphony, 32MB percussion and bass sounds, built-in effects (reverb, EQ and compression), 12 drum pads, transport controls, value/tempo jog wheel, pattern-trigger pad, drum roll and mute/solo functions, 100 factory and 100 user presets, backlit LCD, 1/4″ input, 1/4 aux and headphones outputs and MIDI connections.
This drum machine can be controlled by footswitch pedals, the available functions for this controllers are start/stop and A-B fill/count. The Alesis SR-18 Drum Machine is now available and its price is $250.
Also introduced at Winter NAMM show are this new modeling amps by Peavey, a full combo amp serie that uses the 32-bit floating-point SHARC processors, that will have 6 models from 120 to 15 watts.
The Peavey VYPYR Modeling Amps shared features, besides the Vypyr 15, are 24 amp models (clean and dirty cannels for each amp), 11 StopBox (pre-amplifier) and 11 rack effects, analog pre-amp distortion, 12 programmable presets, onboard looper and chromatic tuner, 3-band EQ, pre and post gain controls and USB audio interface. The Vypyr120 and Vypyr 60 models also include a 6L6 power tube.
The combo models include custom speakers, 2×12″ for the Vypyr 120 and Vypyr 100 models, 1×12″ for the Vypyr 75, Vypyr 60 and Vypyr 30 models and 1×8″ for the Vypyr 15.
An optional accessory is the Peavey Sample foot controller that multiplies the number of programmable presets, from 12 in the amp to 400 in the controller. The Peavey VYPYR Modeling Amps will be available in Q2 of 2008, but the prices of the amps have not been unveiled yet.
We did not talk about Korg releases in the Winter NAMM show, one of the is this Korg Pa2X Professional Arranger Keyboard, a easy-to-use keyboard with high quality sounds using Real Experience technology, internal hard disk and an adjustable TouchView screen that provides an intuitive interface for controlling the keyboard.
The Korg Pa2X Professional Arranger Keyboard features 76 semi-weighted keys with velocity and aftertouch, 120 voices, 120 oscillators, 4 stereo digital multi-effects (including 124 effects types, 3-band EQ and built-in TC Helicon voice processor), more than 950 sounds or drum kits, more than 400 preloaded styles, 4 real-time tracks, MP3 player and recorder, DVD/CD player and LCD touchscreen display. The controls and connections include 4 assignable pads, master and MP3 volume, octave and master transpose, pitch and modulation joystick, 8 assignable sliders, 2 assignable switches; and unbalanced/balanced stereo or mono line, headphones and S/PDIF digital outputs, 2 unbalanced/balanced stereo or mono line and mic (with gain control and phantom power) inputs and MIDI and USB connections.
There are a lot of accessories for this product, like memory expansion boards or a video output for displaying lyrics. The Korg Pa2X Professional Arranger Keyboard is now available and its MSRP price is $4,600.
After the success and the noise made by the release of the MPC500 Akai has released its bigger brother, the Akai MPC5000 Music Production Center that comes with some improvements like eliminating the need of external synths, expandable sampler memory (up to 192 MB) or 4 effect buses, among others.
The Akai MPC5000 Music Production Center features 8 tracks, direct to hard disk recording, 3-oscillator analog synth engine, 300 virtual analog synth sounds, 64-voice drum/phrase sampler, over 40 built-in effects, compressor and EQ, multi-mode filter, 4 faders, 16 pads, 12 level knobs and transport controls and backlit LCD. Connections of this device include phono (with RIAA preamp), XLR & 1/4″ combo (with level control), stereo S/PDIF and 2 MIDI inputs, 10 analog 8 ADAT-optical, stereo S/PDIF and 4 MIDI outputs and USB connection.
Besides the internal hard disk you can save your music into a compact flash card or you can optionally add to this device a CD burner/DVD unit to add new sounds or to store your creations. The Akai MPC5000 Music Production Center will be available in Q2 2008 and its MSRP price is $3,500.
Peavey released at Winter NAMM a new guitar series with a very cool black & aluminum finish and specially designed for metal players, the Peavey PXD Series Guitars. There are 4 models in this serie, Tomb III, Twenty-Three II, Tragic II and Void III, an all of them with extreme versions of classic body shapes.
All the models from this serie features mahogany body, 24 frets, aluminum pickguard, Tune-o-matic bridge, strings-thru-body tail, EMG humbucker active pickups, 3-way pickup switch and 1 volume and 2 tone controls. The guitars also include gain booster EMG-AB Afterburner tone circuit, and optional features include Kahler Tremolo bridge or Peavey VFL active pickups.
If you are a metal music guitar player you will want to have one of these axes in your collection. All models will be available in Q2 2008 and the MSRP prices of the Peavey PXD Series goes from $400 to $900.
Winter NAMM show also saw the release of a new version of the Dual Boost Barge pedal that comes with some improvements that make the versatile pedal a very good option. The Barge DB-3 Dual Boost Pedal is a handmade linear amplifier that has been designed to be used as a boost effect to get your best sound from your guitar, but it can be also used as overdrive pedal.
The specifications of the Barge DB-3 Dual Boost Pedal include 2 channels, volume and gain (27+ dB) controls, on/off footswitch and LED per channel, 3PDT true bypass, flat frequency response, low-noise Burr Brown op-amps, Tantalum capacitors lossless signal, high impedance inputs and low impedance output, effects loop and 9V battery power.
If you want to acquire the previous model Barge is selling it at $85 until there are some left to sell. The price of the Barge DB-3 Dual Boost Pedal is $115 and is now available.
Fishman is probably the pickup company that is inside more different guitar models, mainly acoustic ones, and they continue releasing new models with improved technologies, their new product is the Fishman Matrix Infinity Undersaddle Pickup, a redesigned pickup that produces a high quality and balanced sound using the Acoustic Matrix pickup.
The Fishman Matrix Infinity Undersaddle Pickup features Acoustic Matrix active preamp, volume and tone (that goes from flat tone to scooped sound) controls located under the soundhole, voice switch (bass boost or flat sound) to adjust to the environment, battery checker LED, solderless connections and available in 2 saddle widths 1/8″ or 3/32″.
This pickup system is preferred to be installed by professionals but you can replace easily the battery when its over. The Fishman Matrix Infinity Undersaddle Pickup is now available and its MSRP price is $210.
The banjo and guitar company Recording King has unveiled a new acoustic guitar line, Recording King All-Solid Contemporary Acoustic Guitars, that includes dreadnought or 000-style types, the first one is a classic acoustic guitar and the second one is a electro-acoustic model with Fishman pickup and a single cut-away.
The models from the Recording King All-Solid Contemporary Acoustic Guitars include solid body from African mahogany or East Indian rosewood with AA Sitka spruce top, 1-piece mahogany neck, C neck profile, ebony fingerboard, 20 frets, 25.4″ scale length, ebony bridge and Fishman 4-Band EQ pickup (on 000-style models).
All these models include hardshell cases, have lifetime warranty and doesn’t have pickguard, I like this detail a lot. The Recording King All-Solid Contemporary Acoustic Guitars are now available but their prices have not been unveiled.
Akai introduced at Winter NAMM some interesting products, one of them is this drum machine specially designed for hip hop and R&B musicians, the Akai XR20 Beat Production Station. This device has the classic features of a drum machine but includes Chronic Music sounds, effects to improve your patterns and some more interesting options.
The specifications of the Akai XR20 Beat Production Station include about 700 sound of drums, percussion, synth and many more, built-in effect engine (EQ, reverb and compression), 99 factory patterns, 99 user patterns, pattern play (you can launch a pattern from one pad), drum roll and note repeat functions and backlit LCD. This beat machine can be controlled with 12 backlit pads, transport controls, real volume control, 1 jog wheel among other, and its connection include mic input, headphones, aux, main left and main right outputs, MIDI connections and footswitches inputs.
This drum machine can be powered with batteries or AC power adapter. The Akai XR20 Beat Production Station will be available this summer and its MRSP price is $500.
Another compact and mobile interface has been released at Winter NAMM to increase the huge number of options we have in this home recording field. The E-MU Tracker Pre USB Mobile Interface includes some functions only found in professional devices that will allow you to make your best with this dual-function mobile interface.
The E-MU Tracker Pre USB Mobile Interface, that can also be used as a stereo mic, line or instrument preamp because the signal is preamplified before the A/D conversor, features 24-bit and 192 kHz A/D and D/A conversion, mono and stereo mode switch, master volume level and gain control per channel, balanced XLR, 1/4″ and 1/8″ condenser mic inputs, 2 1/4″ balanced or unbalanced and stereo headphones outputs. There also available send/return connections before the A/D conversor.
This USB-powered device comes with a lot of software, all you need to create your own music and professionally record it with your Mac OS X or Windows operating systems supporting ASIO2, WDM, MME, Apple Core Audio and Core MIDI. The E-MU Tracker Pre USB Mobile Interface will be soon available, supposedly this month, and its approximate price will be $150.