This box turns your iPad into the ultimate guitar pedalboard

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iRig Stomp I/O Pedalboard
Nothing can bad can happen to your iPad down there on a stage floor. Nothing.
Photo: IK Multimedia

Electric guitar players have effects pedals. It’s an addiction, and a law of nature. We keep buying little stomp boxes in pursuit of the perfect sound, and of course we don’t even call it sound. We call it “tone.” But the sensible players don’t try to beat the addiction. They switch to software. Instead of buying and trading expensive hardware boxes, they move to something like iOS effects apps, which let you experiment at a fraction of the cost.

And that’s where IK Multimedia’s new iRig Stomp I/O Pedalboard comes in. It’s a hardware pedalboard that provides guitar players with a familiar front-end to all those amazing iOS effects.

These tiny guitar amps can be controlled by your iPhone

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laney iphone amp
So cute.
Photo: Laney

Laney’s new Mini-Laney and Mini-St-Lion are tiny, portable, desktop versions of the U.K. guitar-amp company’s popular full-sized amplifiers. They come in retro and modern styles, and mono or stereo versions. Plus, they can be hooked up to any amp-simulation software on your iPhone using a single cable.

Guitar Gravitas, Final Fantasy XV Pocket Edition, and other awesome apps of the week

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Awesome Apps
'Appy weekend.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

This week we have apps that will help you to learn everything about your guitar, read up on the latest news, and use the Touch Bar to edit text on your MacBook Pro. But who are we trying to fool with all those? This weekend you’ll all be playing Final Fantasy XV Pocket Edition all day long.

Bias Mini Guitar amp is controlled by your iPhone

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bias mini guitar
This slimline, portable amp can sound like any other amp, ever.
Photo: Positive Grid

iOS is getting to be a serious platform for musicians. Lots of musicians already know that, but now some amazing hardware is appearing that takes advantage of the little devices. The latest is Positive Grid’s Bias Mini, for guitar and bass, 300-watt guitar amplifier that takes its sounds from an iPhone, iPad, or Mac app.

EvenMidi adds real knobs to the iOS-controlled effects pedal [Review]

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evenmidi
Look at all those knobs. Just look at them.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

The Eventide H9 is a magical effects box for musicians, and it is especially relevant to iOS users because it can be completely controlled by an iOS app via Bluetooth, putting virtual knobs and dials on the screen of an iPad or iPhone. Today, we’ll review the EvenMidi, which is a box that does one thing — adds bunch of knobs the the Eventide H9 so you never need to touch a screen again.

Boss’ smart wireless guitar amp is designed to work with your iPhone

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Boss katana air
Look ma, no wires.
Photo: Boss

CES 2018 bugThe Boss Katana Air looks like the ultimate living room amp for guitar players. It looks cool, it runs off mains power or AA batteries, and it features a wireless dongle that plugs into your guitar and means you never need to trail a cable across the room ever again. It even has a companion iOS app so you can tweak all the settings not available from the knobs and buttons on top of the amp.

This tiny cube connects your iPhone to guitars and microphones

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iTrack One Pre
The iTrack One Pre won't slide off your desk.
Photo: Focusrite

Focusrite’s iTrack One Pre might be the ultimate portable recording gadget for musicians. It’s a little cube that fits in a pocket, but that packs in connections for a microphone and a guitar, as well as a port for charging the iPad or iPhone you connect to. It can even supply Phantom Power to a microphone, and has it’s own gain (“volume,” kinda) knob.

Fusion Guitar packs an iPhone dock and speakers

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fusion guitar
With the Fusion Guitar, you too can sit in a chilly, graffiti-covered street and smile.
Photo: Fusion Guitars

What would happen if you took an electric guitar, made it as thick as an acoustic guitar, and stuffed the extra space not with boring old air, but with speakers and an electronic brain that works with your iPhone?

Then, you might put in a cutout on the guitar top to hold that iPhone, and a rechargeable battery to power it all. If you did all that, then you’d have invented the Fusion Guitar.

Nail the guitar sound of any song with Tonebridge

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tonebridge bass
Even bass players can use Tonebridge.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

The iPad has many, many amazing effects apps for making music, and several high-level apps just for emulating guitar amplifiers and effects pedals. But what if you just want to plug in and play a song, and have your guitar sound just like the one on the record? That’s exactly what Tonebridge is for. Under the hood, this simulator app is as powerful as the others, but it’s way, way simpler to use.

Whereas most apps present a range or virtual pedals and amps, Tonebridge is based around songs. You fire it up, plug in your guitar, and search for the song you want to play. The app loads up the sound of the song, and you can play along. The app is impressive, nailing the tomes of pretty much any song you ask for, without any tweaking necessary.

But now, with the latest Tonebridge release, you can also dig in to the settings that used to sit behind the scenes. Let’s take a look.