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GIFTStweak's fireplace

for the studio freak
by  Tweak

its that time of year


Don't you wish you could look up all the items in a music store at a defined range of prices?  Here you can!  To use the magic gift-finder type in a range like this 19-25 or 49-55.  This little search engine does not need dollar signs or decimal points, all you have to do is type in 2 values with a dash in between.

Ok, I confess, I am a studio freak, probably more so than most people.  Do you know how many, ah, bad gifts I've gotten from people who thought they knew what I would like?  I've got more guitar figurines, coffee cups with cutesy musical notes, music oriented calendars (still all turned to January), dopey musical knick knacks, tablets of flowery (and useless) manuscript paper--than I will ever use.   Heh. You open it up and try to smile with a genuine face while you are thinking where-am-I-gonna-put this-so I don't trip on it... Significant others!  Listen now, you can't buy a gift for a studio musician-freakoid at a "gift shop"!  Or at anyplace at any Maul, oops I meant Mall!  Smile. You are in the right place, right here!


Gifts  Under under $17

Gifts   from $20-25

Gifts  from $30-50

Gifts  from $50-75

Gifts  from $70-99

Gifts  from $99-100

Gifts   from $100-175

Gifts   from $175-250

 

 

 

A fantastic total studio in software, Apple Logic Studio Music Production Software (Macintosh) will delight any Mac user who does not already have it.

Its a great deal ATHM40fs Headphones

Its time they learned to play the thing..
eMedia Guitar Method Lesson Instruction Software.  More of E-media's instructional line

 

The classiest most beautiful synth with electronic piano ever made in my opinion is the Yamaha S90XS 88-Key Weighted Synthesizer

Its a favorite among those who do hip hop Akai MPC4000 Plus 24-Bit, 96kHz Music Production Center

 

Guitarists always need picks.  I have thousands, so there is a pick at every possible place I might someday play guitar, even at bus stops.  Check these out

Dunlop Gator Grip Standard Picks (72-Pack)
Gator Grips are high quality picks from Dunlop and com in your choice of gauges.
 
Dunlop Nylon Standard Picks (72 Pack)
Dunlop Manufacturing produces many different types and sizes of picks to suit the varied preferences of today's musicians. Dunlop's wide variety of gauges, shapes, sizes, and materials allows the player to select the exact pick for his/her own particular style of playing. Exceptionally crafted and finished picks for every player's needs.

Dunlop Tortex Standard Picks (72 Pack)
The picks used by top musicians worldwide. Tortex picks are carefully designed and manufactured to give the characteristic maximum memory and minimum wear that made original tortoise shell famous. Dunlop's Tortex picks are available in a variety of shapes and gauges.

A very cool, but inexpensive, Microphone.  Worth its weight!  Main

More Blue Mics

Its for Professional Studios Eventide Eclipse Harmonizer Studio Effects Processor

Considering Guitar Pedals--Get a Boss, made by Roland, who has been doing them forever.  Check this one out:

Boss RE-20 Space Echo Delay Pedal
One of the most beloved echo effects ever made, the Roland RE-201 Space Echo, has been reborn as the BOSS RE-20 Twin Pedal! Roland and BOSS have recreated every sonic.  Tweak: That's one I want in my stocking!

 

I feel ya, You want to see ALL the Electric Guitar and Amp starter packs for your son or daughter, of course.
Red

 

Tweak: If you can master this pedal, you will blow your audience away.  Its a phrase sampler, and you can connect mics and guitars for the ultimate electronic stage tricks.

 

Ion Audio IED01 5-Piece Electronic Drum Kit
The iDM01 features a great selection of 233 realistic, natural drum sounds, offered both in dry form and sampled with Ion's incomparable digital reverbs. Ion's exclusive 'Dynamic Articulation' feature enables a drum sound to change its tonal content as it's played harder for truly realistic performances.  Tweak: E-drums are usually very expensive.  These are cheap, yet cheerful

Yamaha C40 Classical Guitar Package
For almost a decade, the Yamaha C40 has established itself as Yamaha's lowest priced full-sized classical guitar. Beginners and young learners alike will appreciate the level of quality found in the C and CS Series classic guitars.
  Tweak:  The perfect low cost student classical guitar.


The SM57 is a cardiod (unidirectional) dynamic microphone with a contoured frequency response of 40 to 15,000 Hz, perfect for clean reproduction of vocals and instruments. Tweak: The all-around. do-everything studio microphone is known and used in high end and low end studios.  Everyone needs one, even those with the mega buck mic habit.  Under $100  Keep in mind that stores will not let you return a mic, software or headphones


Epiphone SG Special Electric Guitar
You've been waiting and now you don't have any more excuses. Epiphone's SG Special is the most affordable SG ever. Now everyone can own the classic styling and unbeatable performance. Features include 2 humbuckers, tune-o-matic bridge with stopbar tailpiece, and Rosewood fingerboard.

 

Numark DJ in a Box DJ Package
The Numark BattlePack DJ In A Box has everything a DJ needs to spin. That is, everything but records.

MAudio Audiophile 2496 A great soundcard for getting started with computer recording.  MUCH better than the mass market cards

 

Behringer CT100 Cable Tester  A useful tool.  The more cables you have, the more you need one. 

 

Middle Atlantic Wall Mount Patch Cable Hanger  Tweak: LOL, it's the thought that counts and they will not believe you thought of this.

 

Off The Wall Hanger for Standard Instruments  Tweak:  Gives a new meaning to being "off the hook"  Lol, ROFL, heh-heh-heh

 

Latin Percussion Dual Surface Multi-Guiro

 

Latin Percussion Afuche Cabasa


 

 

Latin Percussion Rock Ridge Rider Cowbell
 

Latin Percussion Microphone Claw  Tweak: Stop tripping over mic stands

 


Roche Thomas Fingerboard Oil For those slippery fingered Guitarists!

 

 

Mackie Onyx 1640i 16-Channel Premium Analog Mixer with FireWire Interface

onyx 1640i

Tweak:  Whoah!  We have a game-changer!  The new Mackie Onyx "i" series includes a built-in audio interface.  On the 1640i, for example, you get an integrated 16x16 audio interface. 
As they write:

  • - 16 Onyx boutique quality microphone preamps
  • - 4-band Perkins EQ with sweepable mids on all channels
  • - Full 16x16 FireWire channel streaming for ultimate DAW integration
  • - Flexible FireWire routing including aux sends, groups and pre/post EQ assignment for all channels

 

Gorilla Snot Musicians Gripping Resin

For drummers, pickers, not nose pickers tho..
 

 

  Alesis 3630 Compressor  An inexpensive but well-featured compressor/limiter, for adding the professional touch to recordings Tweak:  I've used mine for years (7 actually) and it has never had a problem.  Allows one to make hot radio-quality mixes. 

 

Behringer XENYX 1204FX Mixer with Effects


A good little mixer for home recording with soundcards

 

The best gifts are those that get used.  One thing that always has a place is a direct box.  Somewhere in the sea of cables are two that don't get along impedance wise.   The direct box helps instruments like guitars, basses, untamed keyboards output a balanced, clean signal.  You can also use really long cables if a direct box is in the chain.  Every studio needs at least one.

Dunlop System 65 Guitar Maintenance Kit System 65 Guitar Maintenance Kit contains one each of every one of Dunlop's guitar care products, along with instructions, microfine fret polishing cloth, and two 100% cotton cloths. Perfect for gift giving! Tweak: has some of that Ultraglide 65 stuff

The best gift for a musician with a home studio takes into account where that studio is in its development.  The home studio owner has a list somewhere in their mind prioritizing the things they need.  The successful gift will be one that actually meets one of these needs.  For example, a studio that has only one mic and its a condenser would like to have a quality dynamic mic as a second mic.  A guitarist who has a great steel-string might still want a nice nylon string guitar as well.  How do you know what's on their list?  You have to ask.  Its a simple question.  It goes like this:  "Hey, what do you think you're going to get for your studio for next year?"  Not too hard eh?

Studio fiends, I mean friends. Slip this link to your loved ones and maybe you might get something you can actually use.  These items make great gifts for the recording studio, and for the musician you might know, or want to get to know. 

Books make cool gifts but can be tricky if you don't know what you musician friend is into.  You can go browse some titles I think are worthwhile in the TweakHeadz Bookstore. or just click those little numbers at the top of the page. 

 The perfect $20 gift for a guitarist is a digital tuner.  Assuming they don't have one.  This is the one I have.

Korg GA40 Chromatic Tuner
With superior features like a large, easy-to-see, LCD needle-style display, the GA-40 dedicated Guitar/Bass Tuner is a great value!


 

 

 

 


Vox VT30 Valvetronix Guitar Combo Amplifier (30 Watts, 1x10 in.)
Sophisticated modeling technology combined with the Vox Valve Reactor power amp circuit that uses a 12AX7 vacuum tube results in sound quality that overwhelms the competition. Announcing the VT series --- the latest combo amps in the Valvetronix series, featuring simulation sounds of famous guitarists.

 

This guitar amp is amazing.  I bought the previous version for my school's recording lab and it has a surprising range of tone, thanks to the digital modeling presets.   Too much?  Check out the 15 watt VT15

 

 

Zoom R16 Multi-Track SD Recorder Interface and Controller
Zoom has revolutionized digital recording again with the first digital recorder with 16-track playback and 8-track simultaneous recording that utilizes Secure Digital (SD) memory. The new R16 recorder is three production tools in one incredibly versatile device. It's a digital multi-track recorder, an audio interface and a control surface, providing you with all the tools necessary to create studio-quality recordings anywhere.
Tweak: This has got to be one of the coolest, budget friendly pieces of 2009. Its a portable multi track recorder AND an audio interface for your computer.  There is a package deal with a mic, cable and monitors too.
 

Mark of the Unicorn (MOTU) BPM Beat Production Software
BPM unites drum machine-style operation with advanced virtual instrument technology to give you the ultimate rhythm programming experience. Combine drum kits, sequenced patterns, sliced loops and instrument sounds to realize your rhythmic vision, mixing and matching any playing style with any drum kit. Or plug in your pad controller or MIDI keyboard to capture your live, groove-quantized performance directly in BPM.

Its not a drum machine.  Its a software drum machine plugin, and its got more inside than any drum machine ever did.  The focus here is hip hop and electronic kits. 

This got my Tweak's Pick award in 2009.  See my review

It is the closest thing I have found to the illusive "software MPC".  In fact, if you add an MPD24 or MPD32 controller with this software, close your eyes, its will be darn close.  BPM can sample, resample, stack sounds on a single pad or spread them out over 48 pads or keyboard keys.  BPM can store patterns, your own kits, samples.  Build as many custom kits as you want using any audio material.

But many hip hop people want the real thing, and that takes you to the MPC 1000, a combination drum and MIDI sequencer and digital sampler.  You can do full hip hop beats on this box

Akai MPC1000 Music Production Center

large product image

Small but perfectly formed, the MPC1000 is a welcome addition to a now legendary product line which holds a unique position in the evolution of modern electronic music. Inheriting all the features which make the MPC so recognizable, the MPC1000 is not only a perfect compliment to its larger MPC siblings, but a powerful Music Production Center in its own right.





When you need to play "Down by the River" down by the river. This is the Danelectro N10 HoneyTone.  Under $40

Fostex MR16HD 16-Track Digital Recorder  Unique to the MR16HD are 33 stellar EQ presets available to each input and 2 AUX sends for connecting to external gear. Add to this the convenience of WAV file recording, digital effects, mastering effects, analog guitar distortion and mic simulation and you've got just about the slickest, highest quality and downright easiest to use 16 track available on the market  A great gift!  Check out my page on these

Tascam 2488MKII 24-Track Recording Workstation

Twenty-seven years after the first Portastudio comes the incredible 2488. It’s by far the most affordable 24-track recording and mixing workstation ever made for home studios — and the only model within 3X its price range that can truly run 24 tracks at 24-bits/ 44.1kHz.
Tweak: I've used the original 2488 extensively.  Sounds nice for the money.  24 bit, 24 tracks. (has 4 XLR mic preamps).   Gee, when I started a recorder that could do this cost about 15,000 bucks

One really neat item is the Ebtech Hum Eliminator.  Every studio needs one, maybe two!

Do they play Guitar?  Here's where all the guitar accessories are.  Here's a thoughtful 50 cent gift. A pick pouch, which you can put in your wallet. 

Is your significant other using computer speakers for their home recording studio?  Then they are candidates for real studio monitors.  Its amazing the difference they make!  Here is one of the best package deals you will find on a pair of KRK RP8G2s bundles with mics, cables, headphones and bom stands 

KRK RP8G2 Monitor and Mic Pack  In addition to a pair of KRK RP8G2s you get:

  • Samson C01 Large Condenser Microphone
  • Behringer C2 Condenser Microphone
  • Audio-Technica ATHM20  Headphones
  • 2  Tripod Boom Mic Stands
  • 2  Mic Cables
  • 2 XLR to 1/4-inch TRS Cables

 


Tascam FW1082 Firewire Recording Package
$599

You get:
1 x Tascam FW1082 Firewire DAW Controller

1 x Behringer C2 Condenser Microphone

1 x Samson R11 Dynamic Vocal Mic

1 x Nady HP03 Closed Back Headphones

2 x CBI MLC20 XLR Microphone Cable (20 Foot)

Tweak: The FW1082 is an audio interface, MIDI interface, AND a control surface with motorized faders.  Comes with Cubase LE.  Add some monitors, your computer with firewire, some mic stands and your talent.  Read more specs on the 1082 on the "Docs" tab. 

 

Next time you're out and an after hours jam session is brewing you will be the ONLY one who has a pick.  How many times did I have to play guitar with a matchbook for a pick at parties?  Don't ask. Its really embarrassing when they catch on fire.

Cables always make a good gift because they are always breaking down and we are always running out.  A home or pro studio needs all shapes of connectors and all lengths of cables.  Avoid the real cheap ones though.  A nice cable will instantly be put to use, often replacing the cheap ones in the rig.

Korg microSAMPLER Sampling Keyboard
The latest addition to the Korg "micro" series serves up sampling with a powerful performance punch! The microSAMPLER delivers multi-mode sampling, resampling, Pattern Sequencing and over-the-top effects - and all under a fun-to-use intuitive interface. More than just a sampler, the microSAMPLER is a complete sound design studio for creating up-to-the minute loops and phrases.


Martin Backpacker Guitar  makes a great gift for a guitarist.  These guitars are designed to be easy to travel with, go camping with.  Keep the prized guitar at home and take this one along.

Take a look at the newer nylon stringed version:

If you've got the cash, few things please the studio freak like a real high quality microphone.  If you see your resident studio geek freak singing into a little 4 inch plastic microphone that looks like it cam with some El Cheapo tape recorder then, yes, they need a decent mic.  The  good all- arounder, SM 57, which  you might find on this page

would do handsomely. I particularly favor the Rode NT1a Condenser Mic if you can spring for a little more.  It can make excellent recordings of just about everything, especially vocals. 

All studios that have microphones need a popper stopper.  These clamp on to a mic stand and have a fine nylon mesh screen that prevents plosives or "P-noise" from the vocalist from "popping" the mic.  They are cheap and cheerful and look cool in use too. Click the pic for more info.

Wealthy?  Looking for that one of a kind gift for someone that just stays home and listens to old "Switched on Bach" and Tomita recordings all day?  Here's a hot synth that's already a collector's item, designed by Bob Moog himself (yes, THE Moog who made the original Moog Synthesizer.)  This item is pure class. Analog all the way!



Speaking of expensive, but classy, check out the Yamaha Tyros2.  This keyboard has come a long way from the autoplaying casios and yamahas of erstwhile generations!  Take a look!  Yamaha Tyros 3 61-Key Digital Workstation

Numark iDJ iPod DJ Mixer

 The iDJ is a 2-channel mixer that enables mobile DJs and iPod enthusiasts to seamlessly integrate their portable music libraries with other music and sound reinforcement systems—transforming the iPod from a personal music player into a source playback device. With its compact form factor, comprehensive feature set, and a blue on white aesthetic appeal that blends perfectly with the iPod, the iDJ makes the music more accessible and the party better than ever.   Tweak:  This is the "what?, she's DJ-ing on 2 iPods!" device.

Lanikai LU21 Standard Nato Ukulele (Rosewood) The LU-series ukuleles are the most popular and affordable ukulele models with that SWEET Lanikai sound! This is where it all begins - classic designs and beautiful wood with attention to detail. All this at a price that will make you smile... Ride the Wave with Lanikai!  Tweak: The Uke is hot right now!

Fender Vintage Reissue '65 Twin Reverb Guitar Amplifier

Twin reverb guitar amplifier. Fender Reissue amplifiers include such features as solid steel welded chassis, plywood construction, all-tube circuitry, and carefully reproduced cosmetics.  It's Baaaaack after 40 years!  Why risk electro-shock soldering the old Fender Twin one more time?

Got a kid in the family that is always tapping on kitchen appliances and wish they would stop?

 Do they spends all their time in their room making disgusting drum sounds with their mouth?    Get a clue and get a jr. drum kit. PS. Too much noise for the homestead? Then they need one of these.


Roland HD1 V-Drums Lite All-In-One Electronic Drum Kit

For conventional drummers:
Vic Firth SIH1 Isolation Drummer's Headphones These specially designed headphones drastically reduce the level of external sound reaching the musician's ears, offering valuable protection from potential damage. The SIH1 reduces overall noise levels by 24 decibels and features high quality stereo headphones.


Do they have a LOT of guitars that are always propped up against walls falling down?  Perhaps the Rockstand is in order.

 RockStand by Warwick RS7 7-Guitar Folding Stand

While on the subject of guitarists and tone, I'd be remiss not to tell you of one of the great technological achievements of this century, the Roland VG99 Virtual Guitar system. The system requires a guitar with a GK3 pickup.  The guitarist can use their existing guitar and mount one of these to it:  Roland GK3 Divided Pickup for Guitar  The VG99 is a guitar modeler, an amp modeler and simulator, effects rack and also a guitar to MIDI converter.  This box will please the many a tech savvy adventurous guitarist.



 

The growing home studio and pro studio alike needs to have furniture specifically suited for gear.  One standard, however, that applies to all studios is the 19 inch rack standard for studio gear.  If you walk in their studio and see gear with rack ears sitting there loose and un-racked, you might ask "did you every think of putting all this stuff in a rack?"  If they say "don't need no stinking rack" then pass. Some studio freaks actually prefer using cinderblocks and wood boards as shelves. Then go to your Local Home Depot and wrap up a few preferably unbroken cinderblocks. (smiles)  But if they grunt in agreement, then Click the pic for a nice one at a nice price.

 

Diamonds are Forever!  Oh C'mon now!  Not for someone who lives and breathes studio air.  Neumanns are forever!  the TLM 103 is welcome in any recording studio, and if they already have one, they might want two.

Neumann TLM103 Anniversary Microphone with Shockmount and Case

The TLM 103 is the ideal large diaphragm microphone for all professional and semi-professional applications requiring the utmost in sound quality on a limited budget. By utilizing the tried and true transformerless circuit found in numerous Neumann microphones.

Nobody ever thinks of a stand for the amp, except folks that are always micing them or what to adjust the controls without getting on the floor. OnStage RS7000 Amp/Monitor Stand

If your friend likes using computers, wants to make music and you want a great, inexpensive total package to get started, get him or her Propellerheads Reason (a software package) and Edirol PCR500 49-Key USB/MIDI Keyboard Controller They will think you really did your homework as these items are well-respected.

Latest and greatest controller?  The Akai MPK49 comes out in the next few weeks.  In time for X-mas?  Lets hope!

The Beatles Complete Scores Book A fitting tribute to possibly the greatest pop band ever - The Beatles. Tweak sez: Great for the boomer generation.

There's more gift possibilities on my Accessories page.

 

OK, here's the stuff you can buy under $20 in case you missed it the first time.

 

 

Merry TweakMas!

from Rich the TweakMeister

tree1-sequencers
2-studio
3-composing
4-synths
5-guitar
6-drums
7-mix and master
8-software
9-video monitors/scsi
10-Gifts For Musicians
Tweak's Audio Pro Shop
World Instrument Shop
General Books and Music
Music Trade Magazines

 

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