AES London Student Section Guitar Summit

by Sam Robinson – Secretary, AES London Student Section (OIART Student)
photos by Ian Trance – Chair, AES London Student Section (OIART Student)

On January 29th OIART hosted the AES London Student Section’s Guitar Summit. The event saw the gathering of a multitude of electric and acoustic guitars and amps, as well as a guest lecture from guitar wizard/studio owner/musician Reiner Weichman.

AES Guitar Summit OIARTThe day started off with a meet-and-greet…of guitars! Different stations throughout the school were organized by brand so that one could experience the sound of a specific brand, then see how it varied from model to model. Once every guitar had been properly gawked at and noodled upon, everyone took their seats and Mr. Weichman began his presentation.

The topics of discussion were varied and colourful, to say the least. Reiner discussed the use of amp modelling systems, and while they were obviously not the real amps themselves he was optimistic for the future of them and expressed his own satisfaction with his own Fractal Audio Axe-FX system. Reiner also surprised some by mentioning  that the electric guitar is in fact an acoustic instrument that benefits from being played loud, as well as gaining very unique tones according to it’s position in relation to the amp and the resulting feedback. The discussion, however, was not limited to just guitars. Reiner touched upon the analog/digital debate, conceding that while analog multi-tracks do have a particular sound they are much more unwieldy than DAWs and the sonic gap between the two is rapidly being closed.

To conclude his presentation Reiner demonstrated the number one issue he encountered as guitar technician: improper stringing. While showcasing his re-stringing power tools on one lucky guitar (think: power drill meets string winder) he managed to find a brand new defective string. While far from ideal this was not going to stop Reiner from stringing this guitar. A quick “Macgyver” and the guitar was all set. This concluded the official events of the day, and while some left to dig their cars out of the snow many stayed to chat with Reiner and marvel at his own custom built electric guitar that featured a body shaped like a spider.

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