Gibson Dusk Tiger Released December 7th
The guitar that’s causing so much stir around the net. So far, only seen in teasing half-caught glimpses and partial views, the Gibson Dusk Tiger is finally out of the cage. Almost.
We can get a good look at it though and we can learn a bit more about its features.
As we already knew, the top is a – rather nice looking – exotic hardwood. Partially pictured in some of the earlier images, that huge chrome thing – pickguard/control panel/pickup mount is likely to be the biggest stumbling block for many. To put it mildly, it’s a bit in-your-face. There’s no missing it. Personally, it’s not really my cup of tea and I have a feeling that many will feel the same way. Perhaps the R&D and marketing bods at Gibson have done their homework and found that it’s just what some demographic or other wants in a guitar but it doesn’t really do it for me.
The output is a little special. It has a combo Neutrik jack which allows connection with either an XLR, a stereo jack or a mono jack. It has a switchable low-impedence circuit. Gibson are calling it the LP-Z after Les Paul (who liked his impedance on the low side). The idea is that it will better match the output to your effects and amp and, if you’re using one, your mixing desk.
The Dusk Tiger is a fully-equiped robot guitar and can do all of the fancy, automatic tuning stuff you’d expect and also display the frequency of the note being played on the master control knob’s display. The guitar includes a a number of tone-presets which are editable in Gibson’s Chameleon Tone software.
RIP (Robot Interface Pack) is a FireWire interface that splits the guitar’s output into independent string channels and can carry both the piezo and pickup output direct to your computer. As for the means to power all of this fancyness, that’s a little different too. Instead of popping a 9v battery or two into it somewhere, the Dusk Tiger comes with its own, rechargable battery pack (and charging unit). The battery clips into a space in the back. Quite handy in some ways but you might want to get yourself a spare battery for the inevitable low-battery mid-gig scenario.
The Dusk Tiger will be a limited edition. Only 1000 units will be produced. It will ship on 7th December and has an RRP of £2799 or somewhere in the region of $4650.
There’s no doubt that, even before it’s been released, the Gibson Dusk Tiger is causing a lot of stir and much of that’s been negative. When it comes to that big chrome monstrosity of a pickguard, I’m firmly on the negative side. However, as I mentioned the last time I talked about this, I am pleased and encouraged to see companies trying to innovate; taking a risk. I think there is a lot to be lauded in this instrument and I have a feeling that in ten years, bits of its ‘innovation’ will be commonplace in a number of more widely available instruments.
Not the pickguard though.