Way back in 2007 we released our first MIDI-controlled audio loop switcher, the RG-16. The idea was to improve upon the existing switchers on the market (Voodoo Lab GCX, Rocktron Patchmate, Axess Electronics GRX4, etc.) by implementing not only 8 audio loops but also 8 function switches for amplifier channel control. Previously, other audio loop switchers required you to sacrifice some of your audio loops in order to control your amp. If you had an amp with a lot of footswitchable functions (Mesa Rectifiers, Road Kings, etc.) or with a proprietary footswitch connector (Bogner Ecstasy, for example), you were in for some headaches.
By solving this problem for guitarists, we garnered a lot of attention from pros and amateurs alike. The RG-16 really put us on the map for the first time.
Since then, we’ve learned an awful lot and have developed some new technologies. I’ve wanted to incorporate these things into the RG-16 for a long time, and finally that time has come.
The Rack Gizmo still has the same basic feature set as the RG-16: 8 true-bypass audio loops and 8 function switches, all switchable under MIDI control. The improvements are:
- Stereo capability (using TRS stereo jacks) on loops 5-8. Like the Effect Gizmo, the Rack Gizmo can be special ordered with all stereo loops.
- The latest version of the Click Stopper noise reduction circuit has been included.
- The buffer and Click Stopper circuits are now being run from an internally generated +/- 15V power supply for improved audio quality and high headroom.
- The ground lift switch has been made externally accessible.
- There is now a front panel MIDI jack in addition to the standard rear panel MIDI jack. We used a 5-pin XLR jack for increased robustness over the standard DIN connector. This 5-pin XLR jack will be compatible with our upcoming Mastermind GT MIDI controller, and is also compatible with the Axess FX-1 controller. We can also make adapter cables that convert the XLR jack to standard MIDI connectors.
- The metal enclosure has been upgraded to Effect Gizmo specs: heavier gauge front panel, bigger screws. The layout has been flipped from left to right (compared to the RG-16) to match the Effect Gizmo.
This brings the RG-16 up to date with all of our latest technologies. We also took this opportunity to change the name to better match our other products …err… Gizmos. (The RG in RG-16 always stood for Rack Gizmo)
The Rack Gizmo should be available in July, maybe earlier if we’re really lucky. We have a small number of RG-16s left: a very small number of new units and a few B-stock or refurbished units. All of these are being sold at a discount. If you don’t want to wait or don’t need the extra features in the Rack Gizmo and want to save a bunch of money, please contact us and we’ll hook you up!
We don’t yet have pictures of the Rack Gizmo, but I’ve included diagrams of the front and rear panels for your edification: