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MGR/Hyzer 01/20/2002

Korg Ax1500g : MGR/Hyzer's user review

« Korg AX1500G Guitar Modeling Signal Processor »

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I work for a music retailer, so I got a screaming deal. This item usually goes for about $299.99. I bought this because I needed multi-effects for live performance, and couldn't afford to buy individual stomp boxes at $100 a pop. This pedal has been worth every penny.

Just about everything. The body is metal which gives it enough weight that it doesn't move around under foot. The effects are grouped into banks (16 preset/16 user) with 3 sounds per bank (total of 48 preset/48 user). Now here's where it gets good. The three sounds in each bank are diverse, usually a clear, distortion, and chorus/flange. Also, each sound has an A/B channel. The B channel activates the drive on the effect, so you really have 6 sounds, all without switching banks. This is very important for me, because I use this for live performing. I need to be able to quickly add drive, and effects without a hitch. This pedal is great for that.

You can also switch banks while still playing the sound you were on. This is not available on Zoom and Digitech pedals. Usually, as you scroll, the sound changes. Now you can get a sound, and play away while you scroll and get your next bank ready. Also, the sound change is very fast. No noticiable delay when you tap into a new sound.

The knobs at the top allow of quick changes for drivers, cabinets, modulation, and pedal. This is useful, because I have presets that I like to use, but the pedal does wah or something, and I want volume control. No problem. Get the sound, turn the knob to volume, and play away. This pedal is a live musicians best friend.

I haven't played much with the user programs, but for studio musicians, listen up, this could make a big difference. Most pedals say they have user settings. You spend an hour setting it up, getting just like you want it. But if you unplug the unit, all of that is lost. MOST PEDALS DO NOT SAVE YOUR CHANGES!! The AX1500G does. All the work you put into it is saved.

Last, the tuner is very good. Even better than my Boss tuner. (Really, I'm not kidding.)

1. The Buttons are small and there are five of them. I have small feet, but I play in Doc's, so I was hitting two buttons alot. I had to learn to turn my foot on its side to make sure I hit the button I was going for. I could see how someone with size 11's might have even more of a problem.

2. Scrolling down through the banks requires hitting two buttons simultaneously. The problem is one of the buttons also access the 3 sound in a bank, which is usually a very loud distortion. This means clicking in a new, abrasive sound by accident. I try to just scroll up whenever possible.

Great metal body, nice solid expression pedal. Chicken head knobs and dials are tight, no problem of accidentally moving them. The foot buttons are plastic, but they should hold up, especially under my light weight.

I have done alot of research, and here is your comparisson shopping list. These are internet prices, not in store, but you could get these prices at a store if you bargin.

Pedals in the same price range:
Digitech GNX1 $299 Digitech GNX2 $399
Digitech RP2000 $299 Roland ME33 $240
Digitech RP300 $199 Korg AX100G $250
Digitech RP200 $149 Boss GT6 $400
Digitech GENESIS3 $299

I feel all digitech products are overpriced. They use too much plastic, and I have seen more than one crap out during a band's set. The GNX2 is nice, but not as useful in a live situation. The ME33 and AX100G are nice, but for $50 bucks more, you get way more pedal in the AX1500G.

The only pedal I played that was a step up from the AX1500G was the Boss GT6. As far as ease of use, Korg wins, but the GT6 more sounds and more control over programming.

I'm sure I've left alot of stuff out, but here's the real point of this rant. As a live musician, I look for ease of use, variety, and dependability. In a gig situation, this pedal has out performed rack mounts, and higher priced Boss pedals. For $300 bucks you'll get a workhorse that will make you proud.

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