Christmas/holiday 2013 gift ideas for hi-tech musicians
11th Nov 2013 | 12:51
Call it what you want - Christmas, Xmas or the holiday season - but whatever you call it, you know as well as we do that it's approaching fast.
And that, as you also know, means gift shopping. MusicRadar probably can't help you much when it comes to getting something for your “difficult to buy for” Auntie Jean (unless she happens to have developed an obsession with synths and sequencers since we saw her last), but if you're looking for something to fill the stocking of a music technology enthusiast, we have some suggestions.
Join us, then, as we take a deep breath and begin our rummage to the bleepy depths of Santa's sack.
Korg Volca Series
OK, we're not talking pocket-money prices here, but if you really want to see your synth-obsessed loved-one's face light up this Christmas, a Volca Bass, Beats or Keys should do the trick.
If you're feeling really generous, we're sure that they wouldn't mind receiving all three, though you may have to accept that your usual festive table decoration will be replaced by a trio of patched-together analogue grooveboxes.
Roland TR-909 clock
The ability to keep time is a prerequisite of any decent drum machine, but this Roland TR-909 inspired clock does it in a very literal sense.
With no numbers of markings on it we're not sure how easy it'll be to read, but since when did you let a little thing like 'practicality' get in the way of buying something that looks cool?
Maschine Custom Kit
You might not be able to stretch to buying your beloved a Maschine Studio, but if they already own a Maschine MkII and you think that they'd appreciate the opportunity to give it a new look, one of NI's Custom Kits should do the job.
Available in a range of colours, each kit comprises a faceplate and a set of matching knobs.
IK Multimedia iRig Pro
It's the perennial Christmas shopping dilemma: would your gift recipient prefer an iOS music-making interface for audio or for MIDI? How in the name of Bing Crosby's Christmas cardigan do you resolve that one?
Fortunately, thanks to the iRig Pro, you don't have to. Endowed with a dual XLR/1/4-inch jack connector for audio (complete with a phantom power option), and MIDI via a mini-jack breakout cable, IK's latest interface has both bases covered. Phew.
Aves Mercury Bluetooth Music Receiver
You might think that your audiophile friend would like you to buy them a new Bluetooth-enabled speaker system, but given how choosy they're likely to be about their listening equipment, it's probably not such a good idea.
Instead, why not give them the useful and affordable Aves Mercury? Plug it into the auxiliary input of any 'stereo system', power it up (from the wall) and it's ready to be paired with your favourite Bluetooth-capable music player.
We've all been there - standing at the front door on a chilly winter's morning unable to decide whether to wear earmuffs or headphones. On the one hand, you could keep your lugholes warm, but this comfort would come at the expense of your listening entertainment.
Fear not, though, because the Midland SubZero will leave you both cosy and aurally pleasured. And with this on your head, you're bound to turn other people's.
littleBits Synth Kit
You'll probably remember the childhood joy of building your new Lego model on Christmas day, but what if that model was actually a fully-working analogue synth?
That's what's awaiting your loved-one if you buy them the littleBits Synth Kit. Produced in association with Korg, this comprises a dozen click-together modules (oscillators, filter, sequencer, envelope, sequencer etc) that can be combined to create custom sound-making creations. It's available for pre-order now and will ship in limited quantities on 6 December.
Puss Modular hoodie
If you want a red top with a hood on it a Santa outfit is one way to go, but your gift recipient is going to feel pretty silly wearing that in mid-April. So, why not plump for this unisex Nord Modular-inspired hoodie instead?
Handmade from “fluffy polar fabric”, it's designed with warmth in mind. Given the synth that inspired it, that's hardly surprising.