Thursday, 2 June 2011

Eneloop Music Booster

With the "rainy season" supposedly in full swing, my hopes for a break in the weather today allowing me to go to the park and play me some guitar, were dashed.

I didn't want to stay in the apartment AND I did want to go to Ochanomizu/Akihabara, so at about 2.45pm I grabbed my umbrella and even decided to walk there. It's a bit of hike made longer by the rain but better than staying in on my day off.

Letting me go to Ochanomizu with the ever present temptation to buy more stuff I don't need is like giving drugs to kids. It just ain't right, is it?

Anyway, while I was there I was looking around for some neat pedals to go along with my newly acquired looper and delay. I've got on my mind a Whammy, and a Wah. The Whammy can't be DC or battery-powered for my busking project, so I looked at Boss for any alternatives.

I tried a secondhand PS-5 Super Shifter which could be useful for bass, harmonising and Whammy, but the newer PS-6 seems like a better unit so I'm on the lookout for one of them.

I have my Zakk Wylde Wah but I already brought it back to Australia *oops*, so I think I'll be on the lookout for a reasonably priced Boss PW-10, that can also double for a bit of a distortion pedal as well.

I saw a Crybaby that had "junk" written on it. I asked what was wrong with it, and the staff struggled with his English to explain what was wrong. Apparently the AC didn't work, the battery cover was broken, and the pedal didn't make sound! Ok, that was easy to pass on it.

One of the usual secondhand guitar shops was closed for renovation. I tried an acrylic telecaster that looked pretty cool, but weighed half an elephant. Sounded better than I expected, and the price was good. Shame on that weight.

My REAL reason to go out was to get a Sanyo Music Booster to give me portable power for my looper. The cheapest I could find it was in Akihabara. In other parts of the world it looks identical to their Pedal Juice. The only difference I could see was the carry case wasn't black.

The power cables are 2.1mm internally (like Boss pedals) so I also needed a DC 2.5mm plug adapter for my connection. I found online one for 60 yen, but the shop guy was a bit confused on the dimensions, so I got one in another shop for 100 yen, that was clear it was the right one. Better safe than sorry!

While I was in Akihabara I played a few cool retro LCD games - a beat-up Bandai Solar-powered Hikyo Amazon, and an immaculate Gakken Searchlight. I was *this* close to buying the latter. It was a little more than I wanted to pay for it, even with a 10% off today, but the deal breaker is that it had no mute for playing on the train, besides I can play this and many more great LCD Simulations here. Check it out!


Limo said...

Stop buying guitars!!

Jimmy In Japan said...

I know, I know. I'm looking at guitar stompboxes instead now, to hopefully prevent unnecessary spending, if that makes any sense. Is there a "Guitarist's Anonymous" per chance?

Adam Smith Lieberfarb said...

I've seen the Eneloop in all the stores, but what's special about it compared to other AC adapters?

Jimmy In Japan said...

Portable power. The Boomerang can't run on batteries, so I was looking for a DC rechargeable battery that I could use outside where there are a lack of power outlets. It can give clean power to multiple pedals too. If I get my busking idea out, it's going to be very useful. Still haven't tested how long they last yet.

Adam Smith Lieberfarb said...

Nice. You'll be needing that for the Echo Park! How many stompboxes you running with it? Is it noisy?

Jimmy In Japan said...

I've only tried it so far with the Echo Park by itself. It comes with 2 power cables, a polarity changer, charger cord, and grey carry case.

The EP was running fine with it. I've been so busy, I haven't plugged up more than one pedal yet, sorry. If you want to do more than two effects, you need an optional daisy chain power connection cord (which I don't have). A single Eneloop can power up to 2000mA.

I plan to have a test seeing how many juice hours I can get running the looper, and then the pedals. I think it will drain power quickly like the EP. I suspect I may need to get a second one. This weekend I should be able to waste a few hours trying it all out.