Welcome to the inaugural installment of “New Gear That Excites Me.” As gear companies release new gear, I’ll try to share with you the gear that catches my attention and gives me a major case of GAS.
Today Boss announced their new Nextone line of amps. It utilizes Roland’s “Tube Logic” technology, a marriage of solid state and dsp technology used to great success in Roland’s Blues Cube amps. This technology faithfully recreates and mimics every aspect of a classic tube amplifier but at a fraction of the weight, heat, and reliability. Boss takes that technology a step further with expanded flexibility. You can recreate the tones of a 6V6, 6L6, EL84, or EL34 tube powered amp. There’s both a 40 watt and a 80 watt version. Hook this bad boy up to your computer and you can dive even deeper to adjust things like bias, sag, EQ, and “other internal settings” with Boss’ Nextone Editor software. Add in some effects, footswitching capability, power scaling, and emulated lines out (even with the speaker muted), and you have some serious flexibility.
Why does this excite me? We guitarists are an odd bunch. We seem to embrace modern technology in all aspects of our life, except for how we make loud noise. Sticking with tube amps is like using one of those old crank cars when everyone else is in self-driving electric cars.
Boss and their parent company Roland have always been on the cutting edge of sonic mischief. The Nextone seems to be a solid next step on the path to a classic tube-tone with the reliability and affordability of solid-state technology. Between Roland’s Tube Logic and Korgs Nutube, I’m excited to see where these alternatives to heavy tube amps go in the future.
I have yet to actually play one of these, but all the videos that came out today sound amazing. The prices are not yet available.