AxeTrak® Magazine Reviews
The guitar version of the AxeTrak® has been evaluated and reviewed by many well known Music Publications. Please click on any of the links below if you wish to read the full review.
Front Of House Magazine – Review by James Elizando, August 2008
Christian Musician Magazine – Review by Mitch Bohannon, April 2008 (Bass)
Guitar Buyer Magazine – Review by Pete Crisp, July 2005
Guitarist Magazine – Review by Trev Curwen, June 2005
Vintage Guitar Magazine – Review by Pete Prown, December 2004
EQ Magazine – Review by Mitch Gallager, June 2004
What’s The Word (Customer Testimonials )
I received my new unit today. Test: I hooked up my 15 watt tube Laney and Iommi pickup BC Rich Rich Bich and cranked it all the way open with very heavy distortion thru my monitors. DAMN!!! This thing LOVES overdrive & distortion! It shrugged 15 tube watts off like it was nothing. Even sounds incredible with the plug in. What sound and tone from a small ISO box. The harmonics & overtones great. Sounds a lot like my Marshall 4×12 cab with Celestion Vintage 30’s and I can play & record without going deaf haha. All I can say is you did hit it out of the park. Actually I think you hit it into orbit! What did you model the Rapture speaker after? A Vintage 30? Sounds freaking amazing!!! I might even get another one so I can run stereo dry/wet etc. This is a great product that’s for sure!
I have spent some time now playing through my upgraded unit and I have to say WOW! It is like night and day. I cannot believe what a difference in tone from my old model to the new Pro model. Not to mention how many more options I have with all the added bells and whistles. This unit sounds every bit as good as my 1×12 open back cab loaded with an eminence patriot canibus rex. I just want to say thank you!
I purchased and AxeTrak Pro a couple of months ago and although I usually don’t email companies after purchases in this case I felt it was a necessity! I have a small project recording studio and have tried every possible method for recording my tube amps over the years, like many folks I have been disappointed by modeling software and other ‘line-level’ solutions. As a regular gigging musician I am also getting concerned about my hearing especially when struggling to record miked amps and keep the earphone volumes at a sane level. I searched the Internet for DIY speaker coffins and baffle systems but it seemed in many cases the end results were not satisfactory and the box dimensions were not suitable for using the usual dynamic microphones. One of my Googles came up with AxeTrak and with interest I watched the YouTube videos and reviews and decided to take a chance and purchase one. I was a bit apprehensive because I use a lot of Baritone guitars and ‘C’ and ‘D’ tunings and I was concerned that the AxeTrak may not handle those frequencies with definition and clarity, well I was wrong, the AxeTrak was up to the task and I didn’t even need to remove the threaded port plug! Using the passive high-end boost switch was all that was needed. My sincere thanks to Jeff Harris and team for a great product that has in this rare case exceeded my expectations! I am now contemplating purchasing the bass model to extend the benefits to tracking bass. Best wishes for your continued success!
My order has arrived via the transport company in Turkey and all I have to say is ‘wow!!!’ 🙂 This little thing has reintroduced my tube amp and recording techniques to me. I always had to go on axis with line out + cab simulations, because it gave a very dull sound. I now understood that I love off axis recording, and I have done what I couldn’t with line out box + cab simulations in months with this little cab in hours. I just cut off the lowest frequencies 10 db and cut between 200-600 hz 4 db, and here is the tone I long for. It is now 2 a.m. in Turkey and I’m still playing while my 20 watt tube amp is cranked and my window is open. Thank you very much for your ‘invention’ 🙂 I dub your cab as the only real isolation cab since it is so quiet as you mentioned. It is even lower than conversation level since we shout a lot during our conversations 🙂 I’m waiting for Saturday impatiently to record my songs. This thing is great. I will do whatever i can to inform people about your isolation cab. You are great, thanks again…
I am the proud owner of the AxeTrak ATV Iso Cab. There are many reviews on the Internet, everything from full stacks to guitar sim plugins and honestly I have used them all. I love the tone of a good tube (Valve) amp, as well as the array of pedals I have accumulated over the years. I have recorded everything from delicate acoustic guitars to twangy blues and Hard-Core Metal. Each has their own setup, but for the consistency of full-tone sound at a reduced volume, nothing beats the AxeTrak ISO. It has its own flexibility with its on/off axis mike setup, high end roll off and its “Deep Plug” which helps harness those subsonic tones. I have used other ISO Cabinets and of all of them the AxeTrak is my personal favorite for it’s easy to carry and setup, its rich tone, and that it really is a bulletproof solution. I highly recommend it and would put it up against any other.
I just wanted to give you feedback on how the AxeTrak is working out for me. I play lead guitar at my church, C3 Greensboro and I was absolutely blown away at what this box does. I bought the AxeTrak 112 for guitar and I have to tell you that it exceeded my expectations! So simple to use and barely any stage volume. My sound guy was very impressed of the sound quality. He said my tone is the best it’s ever sounded. Thank you for creating such a fine piece of equipment. It is very well built and looks great on stage. Our other guitar player was so impressed that he ordered one for himself too. Keep up the great work! God Bless!
The AxeTrak arrived yesterday, just in time for Wednesday night rehearsal, and I gotta say… this thing is awesome. It absolutely exceeded my expectations. It’s the best purchase I’ve made in a long time. No more sterile, lifeless, direct guitar sounds! thanks for a wonderful product.
I just received my AxeTrak and got to test it out and if I was not extremely satisfied was going to send it back. I AM extremely satisfied !! WOW !! This sounds amazing !! I wanted it to play and record late at night but I will be using this to do all my recording regardless of the time. THANK YOU !
The AxeTrak truly is a remarkable product. With as many as three guitar amps on stage at one time, we really needed a way to control stage volume. I decided to purchase one and give it a try. I wasn’t sure how well it was going to be received by our band guys. When the AxeTrak arrived, I grabbed our band guy, and we set everything up for a test drive. We were both amazed at the sounds we were able to get from this little box. We were able to crank a Vox AC30 all the way without any problems. Even our most discriminating players are loving the AxeTrak. After the test, I went and ordered two more. I plan to order three to four more for other rooms on campus.
The Church at Brook Hills
We recently opened a new church campus that meets in a gymnasium on the weekends. A friend told me about AxeTrak, but I was concerned that our musicians wouldn’t be satisfied without their amps blasting on stage. Instead, from the first week they’ve raved about it! We’re getting a great guitar sound while keeping complete control over the SPL in our services. Our worship leader likes it so much that we’ve just purchased two more for our other two campuses.
Cross Timbers Community Church
I just want to let you know that I think your product works great! I still love micing a good cab in a good room with great mics and a skilled engineer. However, It’s great to be able to use this device anywhere without concern for any of the above. And, It’s quiet! It’s a win win situation for me since I have a child now. So, I don’t have to disturb her or the neighbors for that matter. And I can still get a great take no matter when it is or where I am at with no concern of the room or equipment situation. Thanks for a great product! I’ll be contacting you in the near future to get one for my bass! (with no hesitation!)
Just wanted to say great product! Really impressive, but two things really took me back:
1. I currently run a Mesa 2×12 with Vintage 30’s, now I get my AxeTrak plug it in fire up the amp and I barely have to EQ a thing!
2. (Now I know it’s a isolation cabinet) but there is barely any type of volume coming from it (so quiet).
I really only had a half hour with it so far but I’m sold, I am no longer a slave to the next and greatest modeler. Now when I record it won’t sound like my Mesa Mark IV, it will be my Mark IV or my Peavey Classic 30 and so on.
I just wanted to say, thanks for a great product! I don’t need to tell you how well it works, but It was a surprise to me. The interesting thing is, that little speaker actually makes an improvement, in some cases, over the speaker in the amp. This is totally unexpected. I’m impressed. Thanks,
Just wanted to say a big thank you for creating a small, simple, cost effective way to plug in direct. I’ve tried all the modeling boards, and the sansamp para driver DI, and nothing acts like a real amp. With a little tweaking of the amp head I get my sound, the sound of a real tube amp. Thank you so much. I love all the features, and the lack of any more of them. Just plug in and go. Yeah!
The Axetrak eliminates a lot of the issues encountered when trying to capture a great guitar tone for recording purposes. I can lay down tracks whenever I want without disturbing others and I don’t have to think about which speakers to use, which mics to use and where they should be placed. Dealing with microphone placement and speaker selection can be a real pain sometimes. It’s nice to know that I no longer have to worry about it. With that part of the process already done, I can really experiment with the tone shaping features the Axetrak offers. Once I dialed everything in to my liking, it was hard to believe the tone I was hearing was coming from a tiny box with a 6″ speaker.
Equipment used – Ibanez RGT220 > Bogner Uberschal > Axetrak (no adapter) > small Yamaha mixer > Echo MiaMidi soundcard > Sonar 3 Producer. Here is a clip that I recorded. axetrakbluoma.mp3
Last week I received an AxeTrak from your dealer in the UK. Let me congratulate the AxeTrak team, this unit delivers the sound I was looking for for ages. Like many, I use amp modelers for practicing at home without disturbing the neighborhood. Tone is ok but the dynamics are missing. To get the real cranked up amp tone I got interested in iso-boxes a few years ago, and decided to build my own… with unsatisfying results. This requires some complex acoustic theory I lack. I finally went to consider this solution of mic’d sealed speaker as conceptually unrealistic to get THE tone. Plus, considering invested time and money it’s clearly not worth it. Then from the great www.amptone.com web site I went to the AxeTrak. Although I was skeptical after my DIY iso-box experience, the low price made me decide to order one. I use a relic strat direct to a Music Man RD110. No effects except additional reverb. The AxeTrak delivers an awesome tone with natural tube screaming and with all the dynamics and nuances of your playing style. It makes you play for hours and hours. The silence outside the box is really impressive for a volume level I normally use on stage, plus it does not sound boxy at all as it could be expected. From now, I’ll be an evangelist of AxeTrak among European guitarists.
I received my AxeTrak approx. 1 week after purchase (which was pleasantly surprising considering I live 3000 miles away in NY!) and the packaging was first rate. I opened the box and it was like Christmas. Neatly wrapped in plastic cradled with foam inserts and the user manual sitting right on top. I will say without hesitation that the build quality is flawless. The quality control in this dept. is to be commended and sets the standard. The attention to detail is obvious. I consider myself a guitar tone purist and over the years have accumulated various amplifiers, guitars and rack units to achieve certain sounds for my recordings. Curiously, after reading the various AxeTrak reviews and product description, I realized I might finally have the final weapon to complete my sound arsenal. Right out of the box, this unit speaks Rock and Tone! I specifically matched it with a 2004 Marshall DSL50 with JJ Power and Pre-amp Tubes with output set at 8 Ohms. I started with the clean channels and kept turning up the gain and master volumes to see how AxeTrak could handle it and I can tell you that this baby LOVES a 50-watt Marshall tube head CRANKED at about 7 or 8 across the board!!! I’m gonna stop right here because every guitar player has his own definition of what “The Tone” sounds like, but I WILL tell you that AxeTrak can probably give it to you with a little tweaking. Classic rock right into grunge, no problem. Congratulations on a great product. No doubt, you’ve got a winner. Next, I’m gonna buy a speaker cab from you with the AxeTrak built right in. Excellent idea, I can’t wait!
(This customer special ordered a 4-ohm version of the AxeTrak)
First I was shocked: Is that me? With that sound right in my face? I was so used to speaker simulations, emulations, whatever there is, I tried it, but this thing is absolutely unique! It sounds so loud and so live when recorded – I love it. The great thing is I finally have tone I can work with. Not that blunt, lifeless emulation thing where you can tweak and tweak and the result is always … well … okay…. but not more.” If you like you can here a little thing I did in half an hour after receiving it: axetraktremolux.mp3
Equipment used – LesPaul R7 GoldTop, Fender Tremolux (1964 piggyback, controls on 6), Weber Mass (on 4), AxeTrak, MindPrint MicPre, Midiman Delta 66, Cubase (with a little Universal Audio Plate Reverb on it)
I used the AxeTrak immediately upon receiving it with a Peavey XXX to record some rhythm tracks on the new Zero Hour CD that I’m producing. It sounded fantastic! This is a very cool little box indeed! It became indispensable the minute I heard the sound coming out of it! Great production tool!
(This customer special ordered a 16-ohm version of the AxeTrak)
Great little product, it does capture the upper-end life and the crunch tones of my amp that the PODxt was “close, but so far away” in modelling. I have a Gibson Super Goldtone 30RVH head and Super Goldtone cabinet. The cab is 210 open-back Celestion Vintage on top, and 212 closed-back CV’s on bottom, best cabinet I’ve ever had, and if I end up selling millions of albums, I’ll build an isolated room just to record it close-in and distance, but in the meantime, the Axetrak is very, very similar in tone to the close-mic’d Marshall 412 cabs in character. Its also quieter than I thought it would be.
It does what it claims to do! I have spent a long time trying almost every direct recording device made that would allow me to have that cranked amp sound at either low or no volume. When I first heard of the AxeTrak I had my doubts because I had owned isolation cabs before. They never sounded “right” to me. But, I checked out your web site, listened to the sound samples and was impressed! The price was not bad and decided to give it a chance. I am glad that I did! The AxeTrak allows me to have my amp at full volume but at a sound level that only I would hear. And, it is portable!
I am totally amazed by the tone of my new AxeTrak. I run it through an Alesis Multimix 6FX mixer before going into my Audigy soundcard. I get mad variations of killer grind no problem!!! Your AxeTrak is the best innovation for guitar I’ve ever used for recording distorted guitar tracks. And believe me, I tried them all. It’s hard to believe all that from a little 6 inch speaker. You guys definitely make the killer iso-cabinet!!!
My AxeTrak gives me coliseum sound in a controlled box.
Just writing to say I love the product. It was not as quiet as I thought it would be, but what you can hear is VERY quiet, and the sound does not travel. My wife can’t tell when I am playing anymore (she loves it). I realize it is intended for the bridge pickup, and distorted rock tone, but I can get a wide variety of sounds from clean to fully overdriven rock and metal, using all of my pickups. This thing loves EL34s, 6L6s, 6G6s, 6V6s, etc.. Thanks for a great product that met and exceeded my expectations. This is much better than the speaker simulators I use. Best wishes with the success of your business.
I can’t believe a 6-inch speaker can put out that much low end thump. When I opened the deep port I thought I was playing through 15’s. Now I can get ragging guitar rhythms whenever I want. Pretty cool gizmo!
The AxeTrak is the best product in its class, period. I can finally record the actual sound of my tube amp without concern for mike placement or phase problems. The sound quality of this box is phenomenal. Now my guitar solos sustain and scream, whereas before they would fart out from some of the other products I tried. Thanks for putting out such a great product.
Just wanted to let you know I am very pleased with the Axe-Trak. It really works as advertised, which is a rare accomplishment! I go back quite a few years in searching for a “silent cabinet” that still has good tone. I was one of the rare owners of the early “Harbinger Iso-Box”, a huge unwieldy cabinet that gave me isolation, but I never got a decent tone out of it.
For me I have always had a problem with being loud and recording, the axetrak has solved this FINALLY!, It has taken decades to perfect this, someone has surely gotten it right . Thanks,
My Axetrak sounds awesome both at my live shows as well as in the recording studio. I’m addicted, I’m never going anywhere without my Axetrak again……
Thank you for such a great invention, you are going to make my life a lot more bearable.
It’s about time someone came out with an affordable isolated speaker cabinet! I live in an apartment but I still like to rip on my live setup. I am sure there are thousands of apartment and condo-dwelling guitarists that have the same problem. Now I can rock in my home studio any hour of the night. Your box crunches to the max!!!
Hi guys! Just wanted to say this baby sounds pretty damn good. I discovered setting my Marshall flat was also best…and the bass port is AWESOME for tuned down chugga chugga type stuff.
Cute but powerful box! It’s a product best in the bad housing situation in Japan. Especially for the hi-distorted sound lovers. If the recorded sound is heard, nobody will be able to believe that it was recorded in the narrow room of an apartment. I’m using it with a Peavey 5150-II. I can live without a huge 12″x 4 cabinet. Thanks a lot!
(This customer special ordered a 16-ohm version of the AxeTrak)
I received my AxeTrak today. It is AMAZING! I wanted to thank you for making such a great product!!! Since my set-up is a bit different than your recommended solution, I wanted to let you know how super AxeTrak is with the following: *Marshall 1987X 50 Plexi reissue at 8 High Treble Volume, with a little Normal Volume (1.25) blended in. *THD 16 ohm; set at -8db fed into the AxeTrak. Since AxeTrak is designed for Master Volume amps, using the THD is a nice way to use a non-Master Volume amp with the AxeTrak. Plexi users should check this out! I’m using a Les Paul ’58 Reissue. I’m recording via Cakewalk Sonar 3.1 with an M-Audio 2496 card, via Mixer (no impedance match required.) I was amazed that AxeTrak has no hum at high volume from a Plexi non-Master Volume amp. Incredible! Not only does the AxeTrak sound fantastic, but the room volume is no louder than a mid-volume TV. For players looking for that Allman Brothers or ZZ Top sound — it’s the perfect setup. I have several other recording solutions, such as Marshall JMP-1 and Line 6 POD XT, but the AxeTrak leaves them in the dust for direct recording. Thank you again.
When I first saw the AxeTrak for bass guitar I was very intrigued. So intrigued that after a few weeks I finally bought one. When it arrived, I was shocked to see how small it was. With total skepticism I plugged my MusicMan bass into my SWR bass head and then connected the AxeTrak to my computer soundcard. I set the volume as instructed in the manual and said here goes. I thumped and slapped a few notes and thought WOW! This thing sounds great for slap bass. Then I played a bit with my fingers. To my surprise there was no low-end speaker distortion or buzzing. The tone was deep with good punch and presence and with awesome sustain. It sounded like a pair of 15’s. I played a few riffs with a pick and I was totally amazed. IT SOUNDS INCREDIBLE! Unlike many of my musical toys, the AxeTrak was well worth every penny.