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Sunday, October 6, 2013

New Music Gear Monday: Leslie 122XB Speaker

When you think of Hammond organ, you automatically think Leslie speaker, that unique big wooden box that takes advantage of the Doppler effect to make that sound we love. It's interesting in that while powered monitors are all the rage today, Don Leslie was the first one to incorporate an amp into his speaker cabinet over a half-century ago, as well as the totally out-of-the-box design.

Vintage Leslies like the model 122 or 147 go for big bucks these days because for a long time, they just didn't make them like they used to. Now that may be a thing of the past with the new Leslie 122XB, which maintains all the things we love about the old ones, yet brings them into the future as well.

The 122XB retains the rotating horn, 15 woofer with rotating drum, and 40 watt tube amp, but adds the 11 pin connector used on modern Hammonds. But the coolest new features are the ones that everybody moded on their Leslies of the past; a 1/4 input so you can plug other instruments into it, and a footswitch to change the speed.

I think the 122XB is overpriced at $3395, but on the other hand, it's one of those purchases that you'll use for a lifetime and won't depreciate much. Here's a video that explains more.


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