Reviewed: Ortofon Concorde MkII Scratch DJ Cartridges
It’s been over twenty years of abusing the same pair of turntables that has seen me have some good times and some bad times when it comes to cartridge and styli choices. I’ve burnt through a few in that time and regretted a couple of choices, always falling back to the old faithful. But even the stalwarts of one’s stable are not without their failings, and the amount of Blu Tack and five cent coins that have been used for modification over the years just begs the question of why I never seriously looked for a better option. With that in mind, I was more than open to giving the Ortofon Concorde MkII Scratch cartridges a run to see just how they handled.
REVIEWED: AURALEX ISO-TONE TURNTABLE ISOLATION PLATFORM
I’ve run into all sorts of issues with operating turntables in all manner of environments over the years. When flying a rig from a warehouse ceiling, or having it supported from the same structure as a stage, you run into a range of various isolation issues depending on the situation. The same goes for setting up turntables at home, be it a single unit for general listening or a pair for DJ mixing in a party or practice environment. I’ve gone through all the tricks over the years and still have found myself resorting to some MacGyver-style techniques to make the best of some bad situations. It’s a shame I didn’t have a pair of Auralex Iso-Tone turntable isolation platforms 20 years ago, they would have solved a lot of issued and saved me a fortune in gaffer tape and other materials.
Sennheiser Evolution Wireless D1 Guitar System
More than a year on from when we first saw the Evolution D1 series released from Sennheiser, they continue to deliver exceptional quality in digital wireless transmission, at a price range that just amazes given the products that Sennheiser produce. This month I got to give the instrument set a workout, and having used Sennheiser’s Freeport, XSW, EWG1, EWG2 and EWG3 systems in the past, I can honestly say that Evolution D1 has set the new standard for simplicity in wireless guitar setup.
Hercules DG400BB Laptop Stand
Hercules is a name that is well-known and trusted when it comes to musical stands. The familiar yellow detail on their stands makes them stand out visually on any stage or in any studio, and their reputation for delivering rugged built solutions for musicians is well deserved. There is a Hercules version of pretty much every instrument and music stand you might think of, but they usually come with a clever design aspect that has previously been ignored, and so offers the users a greater ease and comfort in use. So, as I write this, my laptop is resting atop of their new DG400BB laptop stand, and I am standing behind my desk with the computer now sitting about a foot above the desk’s surface.
Audio-Technica System 10 Wireless Guitar
Audio-Technica have now given us the latest in their System 10 range of digital wireless products, but this time, they have strayed away from the microphones we all know them for and have delivered a guitar wireless solution that will interest many of you. With this setup, you don’t need to worry about recent changes in the Australian transmissions laws, and can be sure that you will get many years of use out of all the devices in the System 10 range as they sit right up in the 2.4 GHz range, so you not only get crystal clear digital audio transmission, but you also get the headache-free ability to use it wherever you like.
DBX goRack Portable PA Performance Processor
So, if alliteration is not your thing, then the portable PA Performance Processor concept might have just drifted past you in the wind. But, if quality live audio at the press of a button is more your idea of a good time, then the DBX goRack is going to be right up your alley indeed. Derived from the now legendary DriveRack series of speaker processors, this handy and compact device packs a whole lot of goodness into one easy to use box.
Sennheiser EW172 G3 Instrument Set
With the excitement over Sennheiser’s new Evolution D1 wireless systems causing a bit of a stir at the moment, it’s easy to overlook the systems that originally made Sennheiser Evolution Wireless series so popular over the years. Clearly, the D1 is worthy of its praise, but there’s still a very real place for the other wireless systems depending on the environment your working in. Of course, with all the hullabaloo of late about the government’s changes to wireless transmission laws and with so many existing systems now becoming effectively redundant in the past six months, there has never been a better time to reconsider to benefits of the EW172 G3 Instrument set when running your guitar signal on stage.