Micah Vellian’s Gift Picks

1.) D’Addario – Half Round Bass Strings ($35.00)

Sure a bass’ active electronics or lack thereof can help shape the tone, but the strings contribute to a bass’ overall sound. I personally like the a thick warm bass with some definition and presence and the half-rounds help achieve that tone.
Available at Sweetwater

2.) Auralex – Subwoofer Isolation Riser ($49.00)

My studio’s subwoofer can be a bit unwieldy because there aren’t a lot of absorption tools in the room. This will help tame some of those reflecting frequencies.
Available at Amazon

3.) Pioneer HDJ-500 DJ headphones (red) ($99.00)

There are those who are willing to pay upwards of $200 for DJ headphones. However, multiple gigs can cause a lot of wear and tear, especially at that size. I’ve found that headphones at this price range (Sony 7506) can and have lasted me for over 10 years. Unfortunately, it’s time for me to replace them. This one is a tad more solid because there are less wires to get pinched, plus it comes in different colors.
Available at Turntable Lab

4.) Arturia – MiniBrute – ($499.00)

Arturia, who has made a name for themselves with their stellar software synths, has released their first fully analog synthesizer. I’m particularly impressed with the fact that it has no display panels or presets, just knobs and sliders. There’s no better way to learn about synthesis by being forced to make your own sounds from scratch.
Available at Sweetwater

5.) Universal Audio – Apollo DUO ($1999)

Universal Audio has had a rich past in creating classic/standard studio gear (1176, LA-2A). UA has also led the industry with their UAD DSP cards and top-notch software that emulates an impressive amount of great studio gear (Manley, Neve, Empirical Labs, Studer A800 etc). With the Apollo, they’ve combined both aspects of the company to create a high end sound card with the UAD DSP processors built-in the unit. Imagine having a complete studio with a sound that rivals today’s high end studios available that is a fraction of that price and completely portable? I’m sold.
Available at Sweetwater

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