152 PREMIER GUITAR NOVEMBER 2009 www.premierguitar.com
The Pedal Riser from Stage Trix debuted at
Winter NAMM ’09, and we were immediately
struck by its simplicity and effectiveness. A
discrete metal platform fitted with Velcro,
the pedal riser has two purposes: cleaning
up your pedalboard and making sure your
stomps are accurate.
The latter is achieved quite simply. The Pedal
Riser’s 1 1/16" height raises your back line of
pedals just enough to keep your feet clear of
the pedals in the front. The real value to the
Pedal Riser, however, is in organization. It is
designed to cleanly run your pedals’ cords
beneath and through the product to eliminate
clutter. To make the most of the Pedal Riser,
you might want to look into custom cable kits
(see below) for the cleanest board possible.
The Pedal Riser is solid and well-built of
18-gauge steel, with cleanly-applied Velcro on
top (female) and bottom (male). The company
also offers compatible Velcro Pedal Fastener
kits for $9.99 for a pack of three. The Pedal
Riser is certainly a professional-grade product,
though outfitting a board with four or five of
these might become a bit costly.
The Batt-o-Meter is a new product from Keith
McMillen instruments that they’ve dubbed,
“the world’s first battery tester for musicians.” Outfitted with a special 1/4" plug
called the Power Probe and a side testing
panel, the Batt-o-Meter tests voltage, hours
remaining, percent of battery life, and type of
battery in any 9V pedal (or guitar).
When we first heard about the Batt-o-Meter,
we were skeptical of its usefulness. When it
arrived, however, we found ourselves grabbing every pedal in range (and thanks to this
month’s pedal roundup, there were a lot) and
testing its battery health. We can definitely
see where a person who doesn’t use AC
power would find this as a welcome relief
from unscrewing back panels and licking batteries. For those who use active guitars, it is
The product is easy to use—insert the plug into
a 1/4" input jack, hold the Test button and read
the display (a key to the abbreviations is found
on the product’s packaging). The Batt-o-Meter
also can test 9V and AA or AAA batteries
externally on its side panel. The device runs on
a 9V battery itself, which—of course—it can
test by holding the power button.
Relentless tweakers pay attention—the Pedal
Flex is up your alley. Fashioned with a knob
on one end of a wire and a clasp section
on the other end, the Pedal Flex transfers
your tweaks to the pedal below. A mic clip is
included to mount the Pedal Flex at a
Even if you’re a dial-it-and-leave-it type when
it comes to live shows, the Pedal Flex does
have some studio or practice applications—
you can dial in your sound without interrupting
your flow to bend down and tweak the knobs.
While it’s not for everyone, if you’ve got
the cash and the drive, the Pedal Flex could
change the way you look at using pedals.
P3 Phantom Power
Also announced at Winter NAMM ’09, the P3
Phantom Powered Pedal System is the first
way to power your pedals without a power
supply or battery—instead, the power comes
through the cables connecting your pedals.
You can use the P3 system in a number of
ways, but the least invasive method is an
external kit. Produced as part of Fuch’s Plush
pedals line, the external kit features a Power
Station and Power Splitter. The Power Station
We’ve all been there. You roll into a gig and the
headlining band takes one look at your whip and
says, “Maaaaan, that rack is whack.” Well, we’re here
with all the bling you need to school the posers on
your next gig—spinners for your pedalboard’s wheels,
custom flame paint job, and an iced-out handle.
But seriously, sometimes a small, inexpensive
improvement, or two, can go a long way to freshen-
ing up your rig and making life onstage a lot easier.
We’ve rounded up eight such improvements, ranging
from items you won’t be able to live without, to a
few more frivolous toys for the arsenal.