If you’re among the more visionary folk
who agree that an amp can look like something other than a vinyl- and cloth-covered
fruit crate, the Anacon Technology Zagray!
is your white knight. It certainly won’t hurt
that it sounds amazing, too.
The 23-watt, 7591-powered head,
which evolved very publically on forums,
much to the delight of circuit nerds, was
built by tinkerer extraordinaire Aleksander
Niemand. While it looks like a handful,
PG reviewer Steve Ouimette found the
Zagray! quite capable of everything from
simple clean Strat tones to Montrose- and
ZZ Top-style crunch—praising a midrange
voice that he claims “smokes just about
every amp on the market.”
He was also very reluctant to let it go
when Niemand needed it back, saying: “few
amps I’ve played over the past few years offer
the flexibility, performance, tone-shaping
options and pure fun of the Zagray! If I had
to choose a single studio amp for my work,
this might be it.”
We may not have moved along enough in
our musical evolution to require the extended possibilities of things like fanned frets.
But when the time comes that a regular old
four-string is standing in the way of you
playing your best, the Dingwall Z3 5-String
is waiting to launch you to the next level.
According to reviewer Dave Abdo, you
could sum the Dingwall in the words “
versatile” and “balanced.” In fact, he “was able
emulate the punch of a StingRay or the
warm, plucky sounds of a jazz bass with
a simple turn of the pickup selector.” No
mean feat for a single bass.
The fan frets had Abdo counting himself as a convert in no time at all—
finding the layout comfortable and intuitive
after a spell. Most of all, he really came to
appreciate that the Dingwall could do it
all, from rockin’ moves that seemed almost
incongruous to its advanced appearance, to
the fancy fretwork it looks born for.
If the Totally Wycked Audio Triskelion
TK- 1 looks more than a little like an
instrument sent across space by some sinister Klingon-ian kingdom to do harm,
well… it kinda is. Inspired in many ways
by the Maestro Parametric Filter and
Systech Harmonic Energizer, it’s a filter
that boosts and modifies specific frequencies—often in radical ways.
The TK- 1 proved to be a multi-dimensional weapon. And we noted that it was
easy to set the Triskelion to take advantage
of a guitar’s given strength, hone in on
the harmonic sweet spot of a guitar or
pickup and boost it. But as its aggressive
visage suggests, it’s just fine with getting
mean, and we were moved to remark that
it’s “graceful and at home when heavy,
and will drag you and your guitar happily
screaming in pursuit of lingering notes and
harmonics.” Clean or dirty, we found lots
of reasons to love the TK- 1. For bringing
so much life to our axe work in spite of its
Wycked appearance, we felt it most deserving of a Premier Gear Award.