New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)

1st Jun 2012 | 07:25

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
28 products at a glance

Every month, MusicRadar's industry-leading sister magazines - Guitarist, Computer Music, Total Guitar, Rhythm and Future Music - publish the best independent and in-depth music-making gear reviews.

This is a collection of electric and acoustic guitars, amps and effects, all of which were tested meticulously by either Guitarist or Total Guitar in recent months and reviewed on MusicRadar throughout May 2012.

Flick through this month's picks and follow the links to read each product's full review. We kick off with a tasty all-mahogany acoustic…

NEXT: Atkin Guitars AA AM Special

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Atkin Guitars AA AM Special
Alister Atkin is adding models to his acoustic range all the time, and among them are these new fetching all-mahogany jobs. We dip in…

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“Puts a fine gloss on the all-mahogany genre, with great style.”

FULL REVIEW:Atkin Guitars AA AM Special

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Fender 50th Anniversary Jaguar (£1943)
A new Jaguar heralds the half-century celebrations for Fender's least popular 'classic' electric.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“A perfectly good Jaguar. But does it really broaden the appeal of what was a truly oddball Leo Fender design?”

FULL REVIEW:Fender 50th Anniversary Jaguar

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

BUY: Fender 50th Anniversary Jaguar currently available from:
UK: Andertons Music | Thomann
USA: Full Compass
FR: Thomann | Michenaud | Woodbrass | Musikia

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Collings I35LC (£3799)
Would a company famed for solid wood acoustics and electrics turn its hand to making plywood guitars? One firm in Austin, Texas certainly would.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“Once again, Collings redefines the term boutique guitar. One of the finest thinline semis we've ever played.”

FULL REVIEW:Collings I35LC

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Egnater Vengeance (£1149)
Egnater releases a long-awaited high-power head…

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“The Vengeance is a truly great two-channel head.”

FULL REVIEW:Egnater Vengeance

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

BUY Egnater Vengeance currently available from:
USA: Sweetwater | Full Compass

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
GJ2 Arete Four-Star (£2299)
Grover Jackon returns with a new fully customisable boutique design.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“Very natural feeling thanks to the oil finish, this guitar plays wonderfully.”

FULL REVIEW:GJ2 Arete Four-Star

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Fender Modern Player Jaguar Bass (£443)
This stripped-down version of Fender's Jaguar bass offers a radical change - but would it have been better off being called the Jazzuar?

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“This Modern Player is an affordable, desirable Jaguar Bass with Fender on the headstock. As an entry-level instrument it stands out from the crowd. The third classic Fender bass design? Maybe…”

FULL REVIEW:Fender Modern Player Jaguar Bass

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

BUY: Fender Modern Player Jaguar Bass currently available from:
UK: Andertons Music | Thomann
USA: Sweetwater
FR:Thomann | Woodbrass | Musikia

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Sonoma Wire Works GuitarJack £139
Audio input for your iPhone or iPad.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“It's not cheap, but if you want a rugged audio input device for iOS that will slip into any pocket and take more than just guitar signals, GuitarJack is the way to go.”

FULL REVIEW:Sonoma Wire Works GuitarJack

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

BUY: Sonoma Wire Works GuitarJack currently available from:
UK: Andertons Music Co. | Thomann
USA: Full Compass
FR: Thomann | Star's Music | Woodbrass | Musikia

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Super-Vee BladeRunner Tremolo System (£120)
Classy update for your Strat-style guitar...

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“An idiot proof, easily reversible retro-fit vibrato that won't damage your guitar. It sounds good and although feels slightly stiffer has exceptional return to pitch with zero tweaking.”

FULL REVIEW:Super-Vee BladeRunner Tremolo System

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Eternashine Guitar Scratch Remover (£19)
Another restorative guitar potion.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“This is a nice package that works on those small but still annoying scratches and marks, as well and giving your favourite axe a thought clean and polish. Plus, if you purchase the product from Posh Guitars, 10 per cent of the asking price goes to charity work in Africa building orphanages to care for AIDS victims.”

FULL REVIEW:Eternashine Guitar Scratch Remover

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Egnater Armageddon (£1499)
Egnater unleashes a serious dose of stack attack.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“The Armageddon will win lots of three-channel fans - don't pass up a chance to try an awesome amp.”

FULL REVIEW:Egnater Armageddon

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

BUY: Egnater Armageddon currently available from:
USA: Sweetwater

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Fender Johnny Marr Jaguar (£1943)
Has time and the input of one of the UK's most revered guitarists made it time to reconsider the Jaguar?

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“Finally, 50 years on, the evocative style and sound of the Jaguar is now available on an instrument that works. Nice one, Mr Marr.”

FULL REVIEW:Fender Johnny Marr Jaguar

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

BUY Fender Johnny Marr Jaguar currently available from:
UK/Europe: Andertons Music | Thomann
USA: Sweetwater | Full Compass
FR: Thomann | Michenaud | Star's Music | Woodbrass

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
GJ2 Arete Five-Star (£2999)
Back in the '70s, Grover Jackson instigated the idea of hot-rodding guitars for the rock fraternity. Now he re-emerges…

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“Options galore make this a serious boutique contender for rock.”

FULL REVIEW:GJ2 Arete Five-Star

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Godin Core HB (£899)
This new Godin keeps things simple but effective.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“A strong alternative to more predictable Gibson-influenced electrics.”

FULL REVIEW:Godin Core HB

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

BUY: Godin Core HB currently available from:
UK: Thomann
FR: Thomann

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Hayden HGT-A20 (£539)
Hayden steps into the mid-price valve-amp ring.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“Portable and loud-for-20-watts valve combo with a wide range of sounds for classic rock and rock-leaning blues styles.”

FULL REVIEW:Hayden HGT-A20

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

BUY Hayden HGT-A20 currently available from:
UK:Gear4Music

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Mariner Eunoia DEC (£525)
Mariner's Green Series appeals to your conscience - but what about your ears?

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“An eco-friendly guitar with excellent electro sounds.”

FULL REVIEW:Mariner Eunoia DEC

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Godin Core P-90 (£849)
A fresh model from a major Canadian maker.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“An appealing, well-made and good sounding instrument.”

FULL REVIEW:Godin Core P-90

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

BUY: Godin Core P-90 currently available from:
UK: Thomann
FR: Thomann

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Timber Tones Bone Tones plectrums (£4)
Bone up on your playing with Timber Tones…

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“The plectrums are certainly attractive and well made, but whether the animal origins of these products bothers you will be down to personal preference.”

FULL REVIEW:Timber Tones Bone Tones plectrums

(Reviewed in Total Guitar issue 228)

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Perri's Leathers Licensed Straps (£15-22)
Show your rock idols some love with these straps

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“Strong range of designs, if that's your thing.”

FULL REVIEW: Perri's Leathers Licensed Straps

(Reviewed in Total Guitar issue 228)

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Dunlop Sturdy Stand (£55)
There's a stand for that…

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“We'd sooner pay out for the SturdyStand than a broken iPad…”

FULL REVIEW:Dunlop Sturdy Stand

(Reviewed in Total Guitar issue 228)

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Hayden HGT-A40 (£529)
UK marque Hayden enters the crowded mid-range amp market.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“Reasonable value option for a giggable, valve-powered rock rig that steers away from classic Marshall and Fender.”

FULL REVIEW:Hayden HGT-A40

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

BUYHayden HGT-A40 currently available from:
UK/Europe: Gear4Music

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Dunlop Ben Harper Signature Tone Bar (£49)
Harping on about slide.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“It may be a niche product and rather expensive, but for lap slide styles the Ben Harper Tone Bar scores highly for sustain, tone and comfort.”

FULL REVIEW:Dunlop Ben Harper Signature Tone Bar

(Reviewed in Total Guitar issue 228)

BUY: Dunlop Ben Harper Signature Tone Bar currently available from:
USA: Full Compass
FR: Michenaud

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
PRS SE 30 head (£999)
A no-frills workhorse that's all about the tone.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“If you don't need oodles of gain, then get stuck in and simply enjoy an expressive amp that will respond dynamically to your guitar and playing style.”

FULL REVIEW:PRS SE 30 head

(Reviewed in Total Guitar issue 228)

BUY: PRS SE 30 Head currently available from:
USA: Sweetwater

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Fret-King Black Label Elise (£749)
Trev Wilkinson's new tone machine combines pro players' experience with innovative construction methods.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“Clever Trevor has designed a fantastic working musician's tool that's tonally versatile, gig-tough and realistically priced.”

FULL REVIEW:Fret-King Black Label Elise

(Reviewed in Total Guitar issue 228)

BUY: Fret-King Black Label Elise currently available from:
UK: Gear4Music

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Pigtronix FAT Drive (£115)
Pigging out on fat tones.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“A smart, modern and intuitive pedal, with a great set of classic and contemporary tones. Best of all, this boutique quality comes in at a sensible price.”

FULL REVIEW:Pigtronix FAT Drive

(Reviewed in Total Guitar issue 228)

BUY: Pigtronix FAT Drive currently available from:
UK/Europe: Thomann| Gear4Music
USA: Sweetwater | Full Compass
FR: Thomann

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Carl Martin Classic Optical Envelope (£99)
Play that funky music.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“A unit that deserves some serious consideration.”

FULL REVIEW:Carl Martin Classic Optical Envelope

(Reviewed in Total Guitar issue 228)

BUY: Carl Martin Classic Optical Envelope currently available from:
UK/Europe: Thomann
FR: Thomann

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Mariner Eunoia OME (£525)
How does Mariner's eco-friendly Green Series compete tonally?

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“Though ticking green boxes, the OME may struggle to compete tonally with popular £500 electros.”

FULL REVIEW:Mariner Eunoia OME

(Reviewed in Guitarist issue 355)

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Gretsch G5013CE Rancher Jr (£298)
A resurrected classic that has the looks and the chops.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“If you're looking for something outside of the norm that can still do the business when required, this could be just the ticket.”

FULL REVIEW:Gretsch G5013CE Rancher Jr

(Reviewed in Total Guitar issue 228)

BUY; Gretsch G5013CE Rancher Jr currently available from:
UK/Europe: Andertons Music
USA: Sweetwater | Full Compass
FR:Woodbrass | Musikia

New guitar gear of the month: review round-up (June 2012)
Squier Vintage Modified Surf Strat (£334)
A '60s cutie is dressed up with a bit of lipstick for surf and retro aficionados.

MusicRadar’s verdict:

“A custom colour, vibrato-loaded Stratocaster is the ultimate surf guitar. Pimping one with a set of lipstick pickups makes this guitar even more ridiculously desirable.”

FULL REVIEW:Squier Vintage Modified Surf Strat

(Reviewed in Total Guitar issue 228)

BUY: Squier Vintage Modified Surf Strat currently available from:
UK: Andertons Music | Thomann | Gear4Music
USA: Sweetwater | Full Compass
FR:Thomann | Michenaud | Woodbrass | Musikia

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