There’s an obsessive-compulsive bunch out there who will tweak forever to get it right.
It doesn’t matter how well received something was the first time, dagnabit, they’re going
to make it better. This group’s attention to detail and relentless improvements have given
birth to a whole slew of second and third generation instruments that improve upon their
predecessors—often just months after the predecessors hit stores. To these we say: keep on
tweaking—our tone is better for it—and enjoy the Premier Gear Redux Deluxe Award.
Carol Ann OD2r
The OD2r is a boutique amp that was slimmed down and tailored
toward recording. The amp is versatile, with a switch for either 6V6
or 6L6s and two distinct channels. Both of the amp’s two channels
were mind-blowers, with Channel A delivering perfect Strat tone,
and Channel B delivering a completely new and different sound.
Reviewer Steve Ouimette says, “I liked it so much that I’ve ordered
one to be part of my arsenal of amps. After I had it for that brief
period of time I just felt like there was no other amp that could
achieve its tone, so I called up Alan and he’s going to build me
one. Clearly, the cat is out of the bag.”
Ibanez Tube King TK999HT
An update of the nineties Tube King, the new version
features a 12AX7 that delivers genuine tube-like distortion. The pedal is easy to get great sounds out of, and
is a great choice when a tube amp isn’t an option. Said
reviewer Gary Guzman [August ’08, online], “It can
make any guitar setup with average pickups and amp
sound amazing.” With a street price of $149.99, the
Tube King nearly won the Nice Price award as well.
Hamer Talladega Pro
We got our hands on the Talladega Pro a mere half-year after
the Talladega. The Talladega Pro was spot on; it brought together a wraparound bridge and humbuckers, dropped the controls
in a classic LP configuration, and classed it up with ivoroid
binding on the mahogany neck. The Pro really separated itself
from its predecessor by offering a thick, Gibson-like tone with a
Fender scale and feel.
“If you’re a Fender aficionado and switching
between different scale lengths gives you the
willies, the Talladega Pro could handle your
humbucker-flavored chores with aplomb.”
– July ‘08