NAMM

  • Last year, YouTube guitar wizard Jared Dines began a quest to find a skilled luthier who could make him a one-off 17-string guitar. After being let down by a US builder, Australia's Perry Ormsby stepped in to save the day. The result is the 18-string monster you see here, dubbed the Djent 2018.
  • Many synthesizers are aimed squarely at adults, but hardware for youngsters occasionally comes along that's capable of satisfying grown ups, too. Such is the case with Blipblox, a music-making toy for kids which looks like so much fun that parents might just end up playing it themselves.​
  • For more than 100 years, most of the soundboards of acoustic guitars have used X-shaped bracing to not only reinforce the top but to help give the instruments their voice. Now Taylor Guitars has announced the V-Class bracing system, which is said to both boost volume and increase sustain.
  • ​We've seen some incredible instruments from Fender Custom Shop's Yuriy Shishkov in the last couple of years. And now the Master Builder has teamed up with Jim Dolmage to create a guitar and amp which pay a not-so-subtle homage to The Who's iconic 1975 rock opera, Tommy.​
  • Zivix has announced the third generation of its pleasantly portable Jamstik smart guitar MIDI controller. The company is now offering different models to serve learners and more experienced players – with more frets, more power and (hopefully) more picking fun.
  • Acoustic players who want to add effects can pop in a soundhole pickup and cable it up to pedals and an amp or route sounds captured by a microphone through and effects loop. With the Pulse, they can tap into such things from the instrument itself – no cables, no pedals, no amps.
  • ​We've seen a number of guitars made with wood reclaimed from old bridges, a firehouse and shacks. But Canada's Joi guitars has dipped into rock 'n' roll history for a limited edition acoustic made using reclaimed wood, wiring, paint and nails from the Seattle family home of Jimi Hendrix.​
  • ​Emulating the tones of iconic guitars is not exactly new, we've seen a number of amps, instruments and apps giving players access to legendary sounds. Italy's Sim1 is aiming to stand out from the crowd by not only cramming classic tones into a stomp, but doing so without any sampling or MIDI help.
  • ​​If you want a guitar that's dripping with history then you can either hit the auctions or grab yourself an instrument made using wood from old buildings. Fender has chosen the latter for a limited edition Telecaster from Yuriy Shishkov​ that makes use of bench boards from the Hollywood Bowl.​
  • ​Legendary noodler Eddy Van Halen partnered with Peavey in the late 1990s to make a signature six-string named the Wolfgang. Rumors of a new version have been floating around for a little while now, and Peavey appears to have done them justice with the launch of the HP2 at the Summer NAMM show.​
  • Line 6 is looking to solve reliability, affordability and complexity issues of wireless guitar systems with the Relay G10, a plug and play solution that's claimed as easy as using a cable and has enough battery life to survive the longest of noodlefests.
  • Taylor has developed a new health monitoring system for its guitars. Similar to fitness trackers like the Tickr X or Garmin's Vivosmart, TaylorSense keeps track of an instrument's well-being and sends status updates and alerts to a companion app running on a Bluetooth-connected smartphone.