Gear

Below is list of current gear I am using. There’s a few affiliate links here on the page as I’d like to see if it’s worth the effort adding them or not. A lot of the stuff I buy is secondhand and it’s definitely a much cheaper way to accumulate equipment.

AMP:

Laney VC15 (Made in UK)
I haven’t owned a two channel amp since I had a Marshall combo in my late teens but I am enjoying exploring this as well as using the effects loop. I learned of this technique from watching Guthrie Govan videos on Youtube.

Some other amps I’d like to own:
• Fender Princeton Reverb
• Mesa/Boogie Mark V
• Victory Countess 30

GUITARS:
Fender Stratocaster (’84-87, Made in Japan)

This guitar was recently re-fretted and I had Paul Dalby put some secondhand Seymour Duncan Cool Rails in the neck, original Japanese pickup in the middle and Hot Rails in the bridge. I really like the Hot Rails but the Cool Rails are a little dead sounding. I’m thinking to swap that for a Seymour Duncan SSL-1n and would like to try the Fishman Fluence pickups in it when I can afford to.

Aria Pro II TA650SP (1989, Made in Japan)
I really wanted a semi-hollow guitar as I’ve never owned one. This guitar was affordable at the time and I’m going to upgrade the pickups with a Seymour Duncan SH-1 set I bought secondhand.

Aria Pro II PE-85/100 (Early 90’s, Made in Japan)
I found this guitar hiding in a corner at work. It’s kinda like a cross between a PRS and a Les Paul. I have a set of Seymour Duncan Hot-Rodded Humbuckers which are going in it. I wanted to have a guitar with some hotter pickups to have as a studio guitar so I can get some high-gain sounds out of it. Something fun to play with.

Terada Classical Guitar (70’s?, Made In Japan)
I found this one for a great price at Echo Tone in Northcote. It’s just something to take with me to practice away from home.

Squier by Fender Jazz Bass (80’s, Made In Japan)
This bass is on loan from my friend Stephen who is currently living in Bali. It has P&J pickups and a 90’s indie road-worn look thanks to it’s time in the band, Incursion.

My ideal guitars right now would be:
• Suhr Classic S – HSS
• Gibson ES-335

• A 4-string bass by Sadowsky, Fodera or Callowhill 🙂

STRINGS:
• D’Addario Pure Nickel on my Strat
• D’Addario Chromes on the Aria Pro II Semi-Hollow
Ernie Ball Power Slinky on the Aria Pro II PE (I am going to try Regulars next)
Savarez Cristal Corum High Tension on the Terada Classical

PEDALS:
I’m still working out which pedals suit my needs and I’ve been through a few so far. I was never really into pedals much when I was younger but lately I find that some basic tools are helpful for making guitar practice fun.

Boss TU-3 Tuner
I bought this because apparently you should have at least one buffer early in your chain if you are using true-bypass pedals and of course we all need a tuner.

CMAT Mods Deluxe Compressor
I’ve not used many compressor pedals before but apparently this is somewhat of a Ross Compressor clone which is supposed to be good. I have it to tidy up the dynamics for various playing styles.

Dazatronyx Professional Drive
This is my first Tube Screamer type pedal. I wanted to try boosting the gain on my amp’s drive channel. I like the sustain I can get doing this and it encourages me to practice playing legato type lead stuff.

Yamaha Magic Stomp
Allan Holdsworth has become a recent influence so when this pedal turned up at my work I thought I’d like to try it for myself. It’s got some good sounds in it that have helped me to work out what other effects I might like to incorporate into my setup, e.g. Chorus, Flanger, Delay, etc.

Boomerang III Phrase Sampler
I saw Tosin Abasi demoing one of these on a Premier Guitar Rig Rundown and thought it would be useful for practice and songwriting, which it is. This one quickly replaced the TC Electronic Ditto looper I bought as it’s got more useful features and functions.

Some other stuff I have just because:
Vox 847A Wah
• RambleFX Twin Bender Fuzz
• EBS Multicomp (for bass)
• EHX Q-Tron


I also have my eyes on:
• Strymon Big Sky (or Blue Sky)
• Strymon Mobius
• MXR Carbon Copy Deluxe (on order)


Having a good set-up is nice, but you could do well with just one decent guitar and something like a Line 6 product with amp modelling and multi-effects. I’m now trying to put more focus on technique than acquiring gear and making the most of what I have.

I would recommend all-in-one units such as:
• Boss GT series
• Line 6 Pod HD Series
• Zoom G3N
• Roland Cube series

STUDIO GEAR:
• Edirol FA-66 Audio Interface
• Yamaha HS8 Monitors
• 2013 Macbook Pro
• M-Audio Axiom 49
• Logic Pro X
• Native Instruments Komplete 9
• Soundtoys V5
• Fabfilter Plugins
• D16 Group Plugins
• u-He ACE Synth
• Korg Legacy Suite
• Valhalla DSP Reverbs
• Izotope Ozone 6 (and Trash)

Manny’s & StoreDJ have always looked after me with new products so I recommend them if you are in Australia and need to buy new gear. If you’re in Melbourne, the best places to look for secondhand guitars and amps are: Music Swop Shop, Found Sound, Echo Tone and Clingan Guitar Tone. And if you have cash to splash on the finest boutique pedals and amps then Deluxe Guitars is the place to go.