Author: Richard MacLemale

Fender Mustang GT100 Amp Review

I was a fan of the previous Mustang amp series – I had the Mustang II and I liked it a lot.  So it’s not a surprise that I like the new Mustang series.  But the real question is this – is the new Mustang line better than the previous?  And my answer would be… yes.  Pretty much.  I guess.  Um, yes. It’s not night and day better.  So that creates a slight problem – you can buy a used Mustang III from the previous line for around $220, and the GT100 is $399.  But it depends what you...

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Why Aren’t the Bassbreaker Amps Selling?

OK, it’s clickbait.  Technically, they are selling.  They’re just not selling in the kind of volume you’d expect from the best amp line in Fender’s inventory.  And yes I am biased.  That’s an amp joke, for you youngsters out there.  A bad one. But my pals in the industry tell me that the Bassbreaker line has been a disappointment.  And the reason is simple – the amp doesn’t sound “Fender” enough. Guitar players are slaves to tradition.  If they want to go the Strat route, they usually want a Strat with three single coils and a Fender tube amp...

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A Peak into the Budget Guitarist Website

Each month, thousands of people visit this site.  The audience is about 96% male, with the biggest age group being 35 to 44, but with users from 18 to 80.  Amp and guitar reviews are the most popular content, with the all-time leading page being the Bassbreaker review I did. The vast, overwhelming majority of mobile users are using an iPhone, and the vast majority of computer users are running Chrome, with Safari in second place.  iOS is tied with Windows as being the two most common operating systems.  Android is third, and Mac OS is fourth. The state with the most traffic is California, followed by Texas, New York, Illinois, Pennsylvania. What jumps out at me most is the fact that about 4% of site visitors are female.  Less than 4%, actually.  I am wondering how much of that is my fault.  I’m cool with female guitar players not being interested in the things I write about, but I hope I’m not driving them away with whatever you’d call my writing style. The other thing that jumps out is that you couldn’t pick two more politically diverse states than California and Texas.  I’m proud of that.  Budget Guitarist is not about politics and will never be about politics.  In this age of politics dividing people and families, music is something we can all get behind.  There’s too much us...

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Epiphone Les Paul Upgrade Guide – Top 10 Tips

The two most iconic electric guitars are the Fender Stratocaster and the Gibson Les Paul.  As I type this, the entry level price for an American-made Strat or Les Paul is about $1,000.  Fortunately, both companies have lower priced versions.  The Fender Standard Strat is made in Mexico and you can pick up a used MIM Strat for about $300 to $400.  And Gibson owns Epiphone and license them to make Les Pauls, so a used Epiphone Les Paul can be purchased in the $250 to $350 range.  So for those of us on a BUDGET, these are good...

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Review – Marshall DSL 15H Tube Amp Head

I always liked the Marshall DSL40 combo amp.  I almost bought one once – I ended up buying a Hot Rod Deluxe, which I ended up not linking and getting rid of.  But when it came time to get a nice tube amp head that had a really good dirty tone, I ended up buying the Peavey ValveKing Microhead, a smart decision.  I use the Peavey head for recording guitar tracks a LOT.  I have the Peavey head and I have the wonderful Fender Bassbreaker 15, which can also do a great dirt sound.  But last weekend I bought...

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2018 Gibson Line – More Price Hikes

Another year, another round of price increases from the company guitarists love to hate  You’d think that here at Budget Guitarist headquarters we would join the Gibson hate fest, but no.  I don’t hate Gibson.  I like their instruments a lot.  My Gibson Les Paul 70’s Tribute is probably my best sounding humbucker electric.  Not that its competition is that stiff.  And if I’m honest, I did replace the fairly expensive bridge Dirty Fingers humbucker with a better-sounding less expensive Seymour Duncan Pearly Gates (the world’s best $129 pickup.) My industry insider friends tell me that the low end...

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The BEST Way to Practice Guitar 15 Minutes a Day

Disclaimer – Clickbait titles are, sadly, required to get Google’s attention.  There IS no one best way to practice guitar.  But I can share what I’ve learned.  And I will. The best type of playing a guitarist can do is with others.  Playing with other musicians, especially those who are at your level or higher, is the best way to improve your overall skills.  But it’s not likely you can do this every day.  So…  Practice with a metronome/drum machine/backing track.  The difference between a bad player and a good one can often be their sense of timing.  If...

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Review – Mighty Mite Strat Neck

I bought a Mighty Mite Strat Neck from StewMac.  This is my review – it’s shit.  I can return it, or refret it.  I’m going to refret it. I’ve read that Mighty Mite necks are hit and miss – some people get lucky, some don’t.  Here’s what I can tell you – do not buy one of these necks if you plan on simply dropping it into your Strat.  It will need work before it’s usable.  But let’s stick to the BG review format, shall we? The Good The satin finish on the back of the neck feels nice,...

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