Tycoon Acrylic Cajon
Just when you think that you've seen it all in terms of cajon construction and the materials utilised, we now have something quite unique to get hands-on with.
Tycoon is a relatively new company, having only produced percussion since the mid-'90s, but already produce quite a staggering array of cajons. A multitude of different wooden models are included in their catalogue as well as some electriﬁed 'E-Cajons' and two types of acrylic cajon.
Tycoon produce one acrylic model already with a ﬁbreglass front plate if you want a completely synthetic beast, but this cajon satisfyingly mixes both natural and man-made materials.
This particularly striking cajon is available in four different body colours and the ﬁrst thing that you notice is just how heavy it is when compared to its wooden cousins. The thick acrylic body features a conventional rear sound hole, and saying it's substantial is an understatement to say the least.
It's beautifully ﬁnished throughout and gives the player a reassuring feeling of stability in addition to its obviously über-funky look. The responsive Black Makah burl wood frontplate complements the clear surround beautifully, although there are several other coloured-body models too - in Cherry Red, Neon Green and Royal Blue.
The solid, transparent acrylic body design seems to really amplify all the conventional cajon tones. Bass response is highly impressive with mids and slaps crisp and super clear.
The twin set of adjustable black guitar string snare wires lie vertically down the rear of the front plate and the level of snap is achieved via the included Allen wrench. There are also removable Velcro strips half-way down the wires that help you control their effect still further.
The smoked glass-effect seat provides a subtle non-slip feel and the substantial size of the four chunky rubber feet keeps everything feeling ultra stable in the heat of battle. This is an 'ampliﬁed' Cajon but without the need for plugging anything in. The aesthetic will no doubt be a winner (especially with the choice of different colours) and overall the sound is crisp, dynamic and volume will certainly not be in question with this cool option.
The mix of man-made and natural materials works well. Produces a crisp, dynamic sound. Beautifully finished and funky looking.
Expensive. Not the lightest cajon.
Tycoon have an enviable inventory that includes some of the most interesting folkloric instruments in production today, and they are already attracting a roster of big name artists such as the legendary Timbalero Ralph Irizarry into their ranks. Carrying bags are a must with a weighty cajon such as this, and if you ﬂy a lot with your playing then the excess baggage might well be an issue if you compare it to a wooden cajon. The price could deter some, but Tycoon are deﬁnitely turning a lot of heads with their comprehensive and well-crafted catalogue, and with instruments like this they're blending tradition and innovation to great effect.
All MusicRadar's reviews are by independent product specialists, who are not aligned to any gear manufacturer or retailer. Our experts also write for renowned magazines such as Guitarist, Total Guitar, Computer Music, Future Music and Rhythm. All are part of Future PLC, the biggest publisher of music making magazines in the world.