Price paid: A$ 1500
Purchased from: South Coast Music
Sound — 7
The onboard soundcard is fairly basic but this unit really shines when hooked up to external sound modules and VST's. The soundcard has basic piano's, organs, just about every instrument you could want but they get a bit tedious after awhile. One of the first things I did was buy a Yamaha Motif Rack XS sound module for it which made it sound as good as it gets.
Overall Impression — 9
I own the Axon AX100 MK2 and the Roland GR-55. For triggering VST's and external modules in the studio I think the Axon AX100 MK2 wins hands down. Easier to re-route midi from front interface and in my opinion it tracks faster. It also has split zones. Of course the Roland GR-55 as a stand alone unit kicks arse so I use the Axon in the studio and the Roland at band practice were I can just plug it into the PA if I can't get an amp to the room because we are always practicing all over the place. If you are seriously into midi guitar and you see one of these units buy it because they are a collectors item and extremely rare now. Roland keeps stating that they have their tracking issues under control and I must say the GR-55 is a lot better but the Axon is slightly better with VST's. Also the Axon tracks very well with piezo type pick-ups.
Reliability & Durability — 7
I would not buy the Axon hex pick-up. My one crapped out and never was that good. I switched to the Roland GK3 very early on for the best results. Rack mount unit is very sturdy and knobs and buttons good quality. Supplied pedal is the usual light plastic and I would change that.
Ease of Use — 8
Definitely a learning curve. You have to mount the Axon hex style pickup then set it up as per instruction manual. The more care taken lining it up at this stage the better the tracking results. I actually changed the pickup for a Roland GK3 as I have these pickups on other guitars. Comes with 13 pin lead, pedal power supply and manual. Also came with disc with editor for setting up tracking and split zones. Once set up it tracks extremely well.