Picture, if you will, an electronic device that can tell the difference between how your guitar sounds through a microphone, and how it sounds through the pickup you've been using all along. It records this difference in a WaveMap. This device can then reverse the difference when you're only using the pickup, and produce a sound that is remarkably like the mic sound you just taught it. The process only takes a couple of minutes, and it can be repeated indefinitely, so you can dial in your tone, maybe add different WaveMaps for different instruments.
If you've followed this technology for the last 15 years or so, you've seen lots of folks try to get this right: DTAR Mama Bear. Fishman Aura. And yet there's a reason every band here in Durango is clamoring to outfit every single one of their acoustic players with one of these: The ToneDexter really is all it's cracked up to be. Check it out.
Recently I found myself backing up with multiple acoustic instruments, and wanted additional flexibility as well as top notch sound on stage. The Tonedexter met all my expectations and more. Mandolin, octave, and guitar - all sound great.
Works great! Easy to use. I've created wave maps using an Ear Trumpet Labs Edwina for two guitars (Martin 000-15M and Martin CEO-4R, both equipped with K&K Pure Mini pickups) and they sound great -- especially when plugged into my Bose S1 Pro Amp/PA system. They sound pretty great even plugged direct into a USB audio interface or other recording device. I made a short and not particularly precise video demo for a friend and I went ahead and posted it on YouTube here:
I've used a Fishman Aura (OM version) for my 000-15M before and the Tonedexter is just flat better. That guitar has a pretty high resonance peak at 147Hz and again at 165Hz and is therefore prone to feedback when I play plugged in. The ToneDexter notch setting is GOLD for quieting that down and whatever DSP magic happens in the creation of the wave maps seem to help a bunch -- it's less feedback prone even w/o the notch filter but the notch setting is like bringing a gun to a knife fight.
Super happy with my purchase and I'm looking forward to refining my wave maps by experimenting with other mic positions and maybe a small diaphragm condenser mic.
The ToneDexter REALLY IS all that it's cracked up to be - and so is SHORELINE MUSIC!
In fact, there are two reviews in order here... One for the ToneDexter, and One for Shoreline Music.
There's really not much I can add to (nor take away from) what has been covered in the other 5-Star reviews here. They've NOT overstated the usefulness of this little magic box. I'm using it for violin/fiddle and acoustic guitar. I couldn't be more pleased. Works like a Charm! If you haven't already, take a close look at the features this baby offers.
2) Shoreline Music
I'm a brand new customer of Shoreline Music, so this was my first buying experience online via the Shoreline Music web site. Late one evening, I saw the ToneDexter being offered on sale as an Open Box, and immediately knew I had to buy it. I created an account and purchased it PRONTO, hoping nobody would nab it before I could get my account registered. As it turned out, the Open Box ToneDexter had already been sold and was no longer available, even though this not reflected by the online listing. I received an email right away the next morning from John (Shoreline's owner) letting me know what had happened - AND - he offered me a significant discount on a brand new ToneDexter by way of a very kind apology for the mistake (s*#t does happen, ya know). So, while I was very momentarily disappointed that I'd missed the Open Box price, that feeling was almost immediately replaced by the realization that my new relationship as a customer with Shoreline Music is one based on professional integrity! Thank you so much, John, for kindly rising to the occasion without me asking. It is such a refreshing experience and so starkly contrasted by much of what most of us encounter daily as "business as usual". I hope all of your customers are as pleased as I am! It's easy to guess that steadfast long-term customer loyalty must follow you naturally.
The device works well in improving the sound of a small body guitar with pickup. If you compare its price to a high quality preamp, it seems almost reasonable. it functions well as a tuner and mute switch, boost, etc. It definitely adds harmonic complexity and makes the pickup sound much more acoustic. Shoreline was very fast and professional.
I have a Martin HD-28V with a K&K Pure Mini pickup. As good as the K&K is, it doesn't sound like a mic'd HD-28V. It is muddy on the low end and, without a preamp, it's "quacky." With the ToneDexter, using the pickup my guitar now sounds like it should. Creating the wave maps is pretty easy, but you'll want to play with different mic positions and, if you have them different mics. So far, I have two wave maps created with two different mics and I have found that I use both, depending on PA system I'm connected to. The ToneDexter costs more than I wanted to spend, but the result is that my guitar now sounds as good plugged in as it does unplugged.