Vintage Guitar - October 2017 - open - 135

BELLISSIMO!

Gurus Amps' SexydriveMkII

C

halk up another score for Italian innovation. Chicco Bellini and his company,
Gurus Amps, are among the top dogs in the
Italian gear market. They've also been gaining
steam worldwide since the release of their most
popular pedal, the Echosex 2, a few years ago.
The SexydriveMkII is a reissue of Gurus'
first pedal, the Sexydrive, with additions for
further tweaking. It also conforms aesthetically to the Gurus look, with a Plexiglass faceplate that makes it feel premium and unique.
On the front, the SexydriveMkII features a
passive three-band EQ, the standard Volume
and Gain controls, and a Balance control that
gives you the ability to mix in your dry signal
with the distorted one, essentially adding
more shades to an already impressive palette
of overdrive colors.
Like its predecessor, the SexydriveMkII
seeks to emulate the crème de la crème of
driven amp and overdrive tones, mixing influences from the Dumble Overdrive Special

Price: $249
Info: www.gurusamps.com

and Klon Centaur. A few hours with the
pedal left the impression of an overdrive
designed by a hi-fi specialist - meticulously sculpted in all frequencies, with
enough compression to make it feel tight
but not noticeably squashed. With the
gain cranked up, it responded to changes
in dynamics with a nice smooth bite.
The Balance control adds an interesting
functionality to the drive characteristic;
mixing in more of the dry signal makes
the pedal feel bouncier and clearer, while
mixing in more distorted signal makes the
overall sound smoother (high-end doesn't
peek out as much).
I found the sweet spot a few ticks above
the 1:1 clean-to-distorted ratio, where it had

DIRECT RESULTS
Schertler's Magnetico AG6

F

or performers, the struggle to amplify
acoustic guitars properly never goes away.
But as Schertler shows, things are getting better.
It's generally accepted that a combination
of pickups can yield better results, especially
that special blend of a magnetic pickup and
mini-condenser microphone. With their
M-AG6 model, Schertler offers a solution.
The Magnetico pickup is both active and
offers good electronics, with flat frequency
response (i.e., an uncolored, truer acoustic
tone) and fast transients, meaning it delivers
each note with impressive speed. The AG6 also
has a full, warm tone, unlike the thin, tinny
sounds of some piezo systems. You just have
to keep in mind that it runs on a 3-volt lithium
battery that periodically needs replacement
(though it can last up to 120 hours).
The AG6 is mounted into the soundhole,
and the female end of its output cable can be
set up in two ways. To mount it permanently,

Price: $179
Info: www.schertler.com

the output jack replaces the strap's end-pin
and is screw-mounted onto the body. If
you plan to use it on multiple instruments,
you can buy

enough dynamics and compression to sound
like a classically smooth overdrive, but the
added detail of a good clean tone lying right
underneath. - Yoel Kreisler

the CA-M cable that plugs into the pickup
housing and dangles from the soundhole.
Schertler also provides another cool feature; thanks to a mini input jack (Ext-In),
you can plug in your own pickup or one
of Schertler's condenser or contact mics.
There's another Volume thumbwheel for an
additional pickup, allowing the user to blend
the AG6 with the second unit to your own
preference - again, that magic combination
of different pickup tech.
Fitted into a Yamaha dreadnought and
acoustic amp, the AG6 gave strong results
- a commendable tone that sounded like a
natural acoustic guitar without any piezo
harshness. If you're looking to upgrade
your flattop's pickup, the AG6 is a
solid contender. - Pete
Prown

October 2017

135

VINTAGE GUITAR


http://www.gurusamps.com http://www.schertler.com http://www.vintageguitar.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Vintage Guitar - October 2017 - open

Contents
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Vintage Guitar - October 2017 - open - IFC
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