Home Authors Posts by Dave Chick
Even though I’ve been here before, NAMM is exciting, overwhelming, thrilling and exhausting. The first day was a hit-the-ground-running experience even though my brain and gear-geek self were asking my body and schedule to slow down. My francophone co-hort (Marc-Andre) and I caught up on each others’ past year, took a spin through the exhibit floor, saw a lot of new and familiar faces and, most importantly, took lots of photos, videos and notes on lots of interesting things!
I’m going to be showing my age here, but I was in high school when the CZ-101 was introduced in hardware form. It was one of those little synths that you could easily pass off as a toy, but packed a lot of punch and eventually proved to be one of the iconic “retro” synths that are in demand decades later.
The Roland booth was packed (as usual) and had lots of toys to talk about. The one thing I saw that seemed to be always used and sampled was the HS-5. It’s a session mixer where all of the band members can just bring their instruments, plug in and jam with headphones.
A decade ago, I probably wouldn’t have recommended digital pianos to anyone looking to purchase one for learning the instrument. These days, given the advances in technology and relative prices, I’d say they’re something that one needs to seriously consider. They’re a great option for the modern family who want to start learning and enjoying the instrument.
I’m excited and grateful to Best Buy and Casio for asking me to cover NAMM for the second time! I’ve been keeping tabs on all the rumours and sneak-peaks that have been popping up and it looks as though there are going to be a lot of interesting things to see and experience this year. Stick around for the ride – it looks like it’ll be fun!
The Fender DG-60 dreadnought acoustic guitar will soon be available at Best Buy. I’ll come out and say it—this is a great guitar for the price. If asked to recommend something for a beginner or as a small-gig instrument, I’d put the DG-60 on the list for sure. It has a nice look and feel coupled with great playability and a brighter tone that fills the room.
The Pioneer X-CM32BT Micro System is a relatively compact little unit that can be deceiving. If asked to describe where it lands in the crowded arena of audio playback systems, I’d have to say it lies somewhere between massive amplifier/receiver systems and compact all-in-one mobile device docking stations. It reminded me of hi-fi systems of a couple of decades ago, but in a much smaller package. The system will play many audio formats and media. Radio, CD’s and digital audio files (MP3/WMA) are all supported.