Ibanez, Ernie Ball + more: our top five gear releases of the week

Subscribe to Mixdown Magazine


Ibanez, Ernie Ball + more: our top five gear releases of the week

Words by Will Brewster

All the best new gear to keep your eyes out for.

Been off the gear grid? No stress – we’ve got you. Today, we’re spotlighting five product releases that might’ve flown under your radar this week, including new releases from Ibanez, EHX, Trace Elliot, and Ernie Ball.

1. Ibanez FRM300 Paul Gilbert Signature

There’s been a lot of new product launches from Ibanez in the past few days – and we’ll aim to get to most of them throughout the week – but this one definitely takes the cake. A signature model for Mr Big and Racer X legend Paul Gilbert, the FRM300 takes design cues from the Fireman, and comes dressed in a sweet Gloss Purple finish with chrome hardware and a black pickguard.

With an okoume body, set maple neck and bound ebony fretboard with 22 frets, the FRM300 combines an angular design with a myriad of tonal possibilities, provided by three DiMarzio PG-13 mini-humbuckers with coil-splitting functionality. A five-way toggle switch lets you flip between pickups, and a lone tone and volume control helps to make sound sculpting simple.

Additional appointments include a Graph-Tech nut, a slotted Quick Change III tailpiece and an Ibanez Gibraltar Performer bridge.

2. Ernie Ball Signature Slash Strings 

Honouring one of their most revered endorsees, Ernie Ball have unleashed a limited edition set of guitar strings for guitar legend Slash. With a measurement of 11, 14, 18p, 28, 38 and 48, the set replicates the Guns ‘N Roses titan’s preferred custom gauge, and feature Ernie Ball Paradigm cores with plasma-enhanced nickel-plated wire and brass wire reinforcements for ultimate stability.

As part of the limited edition package, the strings are bundled into a pack of three inside a collectable Slash steel tin. Check them out below.

3. Ibanez PHMINI Phaser + BTMINI Booster

Another drop from Ibanez – this time, in the micro pedal department. The PHMINI Phaser, decked out in a cool red chassis, makes use of controls for speed, depth and feedback, while a mini toggle on the right side of the pedal lets you flick between four-stage and six-stage phasing.

Meanwhile, the BTMINI Booster makes use of a Japanese-made JRC MUSES 8820 op-amp and follows suit with a simple three-control layout. The EQ of the unit allows for a wide range of boost effects, with Ibanez highlighting the pedal’s capabilities to function as a clean boost, mid-scooper, treble boost and beyond.

4. Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff Nano

Squeezing the mighty Metal Muff into a super compact chassis to suit smaller boards, the new Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff Nano will satisfy even the most fussy high-gain guitar players with its impressive feature set.

In addition to the powerful three-band EQ section of the original unit, the Metal Muff Nano also introduced a new noise gate feature, with an adjustable noise floor threshold control nullifying that pesky hum that occurs when you’ve stopped playing.

Other than that, the Metal Muff Nano retains all the same tones and features of the original, so expect all the same brutal tones as the Nano’s larger sibling.

5. Trace Elliot ELF Combo Amplifiers

A new model launch for the longstanding low-end enthusiasts, Trace Elliot’s ELF range seeks to take the tones of their larger stacks into a compact combo range that’s perfect for lugging between gigs – whenever they may return.

With two units on offer – the ELF 1×8 and ELF 1×10 – these amps feature an inbuilt Trace XLR DI and headphone input for silent practise, while the amplifier section makes use of a three-band rotary EQ and wide-range input gain control.

Never miss an update – sign up to our newsletter for all the latest news, reviews, features and giveaways.