Positive Grid takes Spark guitar amp on the road
Positive Grid launched one of our favorite modeling practice amps back in 2019, in the shape of the Spark. The family got smaller members in 2022 and 2023, and now the company is going gigging with the Spark Live smart amp and PA system.
October last year saw the introduction of the Spark Cab, a 140-watt powered speaker designed to give some serious output oomph to the Spark, Spark Mini and Spark Go amps. Though aimed at recording musicians as well as bedroom practice, the Cab could also allow players to take the Spark amps on the road.
But now Positive Grid has added a dedicated multi-channel tour rig built around the company's Sonic IQ computational audio engine, which is described as "a groundbreaking fusion of hardware and software technologies such as dynamic range compression, vocal clarity enhancement, virtual bass augmentation and more – driven by a dedicated computational audio chip."
The 150-watt, four-channel setup dynamically adapts to different instrument inputs for the promise of a balanced, full-spectrum sound, while a g-sensor can auto-detect the unit's placement to tune the EQ accordingly. There are onboard controls for tweaking tones and mixing multiple inputs, though the real power of any Spark system is the companion mobile app – which sports a bunch of amp models, effects and tones that can be loaded into the amp.
Within the sturdy cabinet are two 6.5-inch custom woofers and two 1-inch compression tweeters (plus two reflex ports), driven by a Class D amplifier. Backing tracks or practice jams can be loaded into the system wirelessly via a Bluetooth-paired source device. The 18.26 x 9.86 x 12.04-in (464 x 250.6 x 306-mm) Spark Live weighs in at 26.45 lb (12 kg) on its own, but for more portability, an optional 6,000-mAh battery is reckoned good for up to 8 hours of per-charge play time.
The smart amp and PA system is up for pre-order now for an introductory price of US$499 (recommended retail price is $549). The video below has more.
Positive Grid has also launched a wireless foot controller for use with any of the Spark amps, including the new one. It works with the Spark app for assigning effects, and features six switches, multi-color LEDs, and a built-in battery – all wrapped up in a road-ready aluminum housing. The Spark Control X unit is also up for pre-order at $149.
And as if that's not enough, a Spark Link wireless guitar system completes today's power trio launch. As with similar setups, the transmitter module plugs into the instrument jack, and the receiver plugs into an amp's input jack. Wireless range over the 2.4-GHz band is up to 70 ft (21 m), and players can expect 24-bit/48-kHz sound quality with a reported lag of under 3 ms. The pre-order price for the Link is $129.