Diaries of a Gear Reviewer: The White Noise of Online Reviews Is Deafening

How do you find a review you can trust?   08-Aug-13


I have respect for these guys, anyone brave enough to upload anything to YouTube is alright in my books (unless they are spouting hate-speech of course), but it does make it difficult to find a great review of a particular product, your best bet is to go to your favourite reviews website or YouTube channel and see if it is covered on there.

Of course, not all of these videos are reviews, some of them are demos, giving no critical insight but simply demonstrating the sound and tone of a pedal.

This is what some people want to watch, they don't want some big mouth like me bumbling on about the lack of range in the tone parameter envelope on a delay plug-in. They just want to 'hear' it.

Fair enough! But another trend I've noticed recently is the proliferation of videos demonstrating a new pedal, but where the guitarist simply shreds for ten minutes without really changing the tone or demonstrating the sonic range of the pedal.

For me, product reviews should never be about the player, they should always be about the product. That's lucky for me because I'm not the best player in the world.

In my opinion you will be more authoritative if you are a better player, just like being a decent driver helps if you are trying to review a car, but your first thought should be exactly how you can convey the concept of a pedal and demonstrate its sonic range, and this should also call upon you to play a range of different techniques and styles.

I think if I could shred like a boss, I'd probably fall into this trap, simply because guitarists always want to play to 'the best' of their technical ability, they want people to know how good they are.

Well, here's my confession:

I'm not the best guitarist and I'm not the worst (please God I hope I'm not the worst), but I will help you make a choice on whether you want to blow this month's wages on that new amp you definitely don't 'need' by you think you might 'want'.



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