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Gamechanger Audio Plasma Rack – A Real-World Review

Producer/engineer Russ Long dives into the Plasma Rack and discovers “the most unique distortion I’ve heard in 25 years.”

When Gamechanger Audio released the Plasma Pedal nearly two years ago, I found it extremely intriguing. Most guitar players I record have their own pedal collections, so I couldn’t justify the price tag for something I’d likely rarely use. Now the release of the Gamechanger Audio Plasma Rack? That was right up my alley.

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The Plasma Rack is a 1U rackmount unit perfectly suited for studio mixing. The innovative box creates distortion by converting an audio signal into a series of high-voltage plasma discharges of up to 5,500 volts within a sealed, xenon-filled tube. The result is a unique distortion that is both edgy and crisp, clear and responsive.

The Gamechanger Audio Plasma Rack’s gate controls allow the user to take control of Plasma’s natural gating; a musical 3-band EQ provides easy tonal shaping and can be switched to affect only the wet sound or dry sound. Additional controls for Input Gain, Sustain, Oversaturate and Tremolo are also included. Full MIDI implementation provides control of all parameters and values via CC Messages and Program Change Messages with eight preset slots. Expression input allows an expression pedal to be assigned to any parameter. The box incorporates three Effects loops that work with line, and instrument levels make it easy to insert guitar pedals or other processors into the signal chain.

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While its $1,499 price tag may place, the Gamechanger Audio Plasma Rack beyond the reach of many, I can vouch that it’s well worth the cost—it is the most unique distortion I’ve heard in 25 years. It is a blast to play with and sounds amazingly good. Regardless of the sound source, it is musical and quite usable. So many of the distortion plug-ins today sound good on their own, but are difficult to place in a mix—the Gamechanger Audio Plasma Rack is not that way at all.

Gamechanger Audio •