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“Dewmosa” – new take on a drink (non-alcoholic)

Posted by is9582 on September 7, 2012 with 2 Comments
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This morning I got up and thought I’d have a glass of a drink we’ve purchased recently, that is a sparkling Blood Orange soda, with my breakfast. It has some bite to it, and I find it very refreshing. Well, unknown to me, the remaining portion was already gone. I sulked around for a few minutes and then came up with an idea.  We usually have some really good orange juice (HEB brand “Home Squeezed w/ Some Pulp”) in the refrigerator. I fixed a glass of ice and filled the cup about half full of the orange juice. To this, I filled the remaining space with the Throwback version (made with regular sugar in-lieu of alternate sweeteners) of Mountain Dew soda.

Mountain Dew Throwback (left) and HEB Home Squeezed Orange Juice (right)

What a great tasting drink! It has the smoothness of the orange juice, added to the effervescent kick of the Mountain Dew. Since it tasted so good, I let the family members that were home, taste it, too. They enjoyed it enough to fix one to drink with their lunch. I’m calling this a “Dewmosa”, as you might expect, based off of a Mimosa. Again, the Dewmosa is a non-alcoholic drink, in it’s present recipe, but it would be easy to add a splash of your favorite liquor, if you’re so inclined.

I hope you enjoy this drink!

**Update! – Guess I’ve been living under a rock. Seems this is already a known drink; By the same name!! Grrr, and there I was thinking I’d saved us from the energy crisis, or something. 😉

Axe-FX II: the best guitar processing ever!!

Posted by is9582 on September 5, 2012 with No Commentsas , , , , , , , , ,

I know this is slightly off the woodworking topic, but hope those reading will see the connection it has to my (still going) Les Paul copy build.

The Axe-FX line or processors, made by Fractal Audio, have been around for a number of years. As a guitarist, I truly can’t imagine any other product that could better handle all of the different aspects of sound, than the Axe-FX II.

And did I mention support? I had an issue this morning, that scared the heck out of me. I turned on the unit, and all of the pretty lights came on, but no sound! I was starting to freak out. Did I do something to somehow damage the unit, even though it lives in a rack space? After making different attempts to resolve the issue (I used to modify and repair old tube guitar amps, as The Amp Doctor), I got my thoughts together and emailed the support group at Fractal Audio. I decided to include my phone number, just in case they wanted to discuss audibly. Less than 5 minutes after I sent the email, my phone started ringing. Sure enough, it was Matt Picone at Fractal. Matt’s a super nice guy and really understands these units. We talked and troubleshooted (obviously, more Matt than me) for less than 5 minutes, before resolving the issue. A couple of presets I’d downloaded, had settings for extra gear that I don’t own, like a pedal board to control the attributes contained in the presets. So, about 10 minutes after sending my “HELP!” email, I was back jamming. Truly amazing and wondrous support!

Click picture for a larger version.

This product provides the user with a huge selection of amplifier choices (70+ at this time), speaker cabinets (70 + 50 user slots), effects (flanger, phaser, delay, compressor, pitch modifier, and the list goes on, and a tuner. At present, they are up to firmware 7.0. The folks at Fractal don’t sell you a unit, and wave goodbye. Unlike most other products, this one is a continual work towards being the best. So, when I got my unit, it had firmware 6.02. They have added additional amplifiers, cabinets, effects, and a cool tool “Tone Match” that lets the user match a sound from a record or CD, so that when they play, the Axe-FX II sounds like the guitar on the song they chose. This is just amazing. There is also a free software product called Axe-Edit that interfaces with the unit, via USB, making the adjustments much easier than from the front panel. As I’d mentioned, they continue to add free upgrades to this unit, and superb support.

Here is a link to an awesome guitarist named Mark Day, playing a cover of Photograph by Def Leppard, which gives an idea of the wonderful sound of this unit. There are plenty of other youtube videos out there that show the magnitude of the Axe-FX II.

I personally play through some small powered speakers (some that can handle the SPL of guitar playing), which provides a great small environment. If that is too loud, I turn off the speakers and hook up my head phones. Truly flexible and amazing. You just won’t believe the sound! It’s so flexible, that my old Mesa Mark IIC+ is sitting idle. I wish I could have had this Axe-FX II back in the day. It just covers so much ground.

Feel free to ask any questions you may have.

Cheers,

Lee