This really has been a vintage year for musician-friendly Cyber Monday deals. Whether you’re a guitar player, producer or drummer, there have been some genuine bargains around, from amazing plugin bundles, to products that have never been on sale finally getting the discounts we deserve.
The MusicRadar team has been recommending loads of cut-price music gear over on our Cyber Monday music deals page, but for this round-up we wanted to share our personal picks - the items we've genuinely purchased this year, or where we’re hovering perilously close to the ‘checkout’ button. In other cases these are products we've reviewed, or we already own and have had a good chunk of time to decide whether we would recommend them or not.
Our crew is comprised of guitar players, drummers, piano players, home producers, DJs and more, and these choices represent our personal tastes. We’ve all been covering Cyber Monday for years now too, so as well as knowing our gear, we know a bargain when we see one too.
Will Groves, Editor-in-chief
I'm head of the editorial team on MusicRadar, and also the site's least proficient instrumentalist; drums are my thing, and my style can most charitably be described as 'enthusiastic'. Other relevant adjectives are 'out of time', 'limited' and, luckily, 'persistent'. As a drummer often confined to the spare room, e-kits have been a godsend. I currently abuse a Roland TD-1KV set-up, augmented with extra cymbals, pads and a TD11 module, but have been looking for an excuse to upgrade, hence these choices...
Was $4,639, now $3,929
Oh, go on then. Yamaha ekits have never seen reductions before, let alone chunky ones like this year's savings across the range, so I've gritted my teeth and taken the plunge on the prestige 10K-M. I simply couldn't resist the real wood shells, multi-zone mesh heads all-round, and high-powered DTX PROX module. Now, how to break the news at home...
Roland SPD-SX Pro:
Was $1,199, now $899
Now I haven't actually pulled the trigger on this yet, but I'm getting very twitchy with hours left to grab this one. A tooled-up upgrade on Roland's already virtually industry-standard SPD-SX, the SPD-SX Pro has a larger colour screen, programmable LEDs, extra trigger inputs and audio outputs. Do I need it? Almost certainly not. Do I want it? Oh yes.
Drumeo Annual Sub:
Was $240, now $150
So, having splurged on the above, it's probably time to get serious about improving (again). As a lapsed Drumeo user, I'll get back up and running pronto, before the current offer expires. For my annual sub, I'll once again get access to hundreds of hours of lessons and courses from some of the greatest drummers in the world, thousands of song transcriptions and hundreds of jam tracks. I can already vouch for the benchmark quality of the courses, as explored in our 5-star Drumeo review.
Rob Laing, Guitars Editor, MusicRadar
I'm Guitars Editor for MusicRadar, handling news, reviews, features, tuition, advice for the strings side of the site, and everything in between. Before MusicRadar, I worked on guitar magazines for 15 years, including Editor of Total Guitar. I've currently set aside any pipe dreams of getting anywhere with my own songs and am enjoying playing covers in function bands.
Fender Paramount PO-220E Orch:
For a company getting headlines with its envelope-pushing Acoustasonic and Highway guitars, I think it's a shame that Fender's more traditional acoustics often get overshadowed. Especially this excellent Paramount series that I've reviewed in the past. They're rarely discounted in the US, and this Guitar Center deal gives you a lot of acoustic guitar for the money. A lovely Aged Cognac finish, an excellent and versatile Fishman pickup system that uses two kinds of pickups for the best of both worlds, but moreover the build specs are great. Solid mahogany back and sides, premium checked design purfling around the rosette and edges, and a smooth satin finish on the back of the neck. Oh, it even comes with a hard case.
UAFX Dream '65 amp emulator:
$399, now $319
The best modelling emulation of probably the most recorded guitar amp in music history. Universal Audio knocked it out of the park with this one. It's not just the way it captures the Fender Deluxe Reverb's gritty edge of breakup tones so well, or the incredibly captured spring reverb, vibesome vibrato, or even the clean headroom that's a huge draw as a pedal platform for me. This actually adds more than the amp offers. There are three different boost modes, six great speaker emulations to choose from once you've registered the pedal with the UAFX app and you can program the footswitches to give you two channels, each with different boosts and speakers.
Squier 40th Ann. Jazz Bass:
$499.99, now $349.99
Squier's 40th year has given us some great guitars, but I can't be alone in being a guitarist who has always wanted to add a bass to the collection. The Jazz Bass has always been my wishlist model too, and this one is the kind of deal that can make it a reality with a huge $150 discount from Fender. I love the fact it has a satin body and neck finish with an anodized aluminum pickguard that gives it subtle, premium flair. It's a great platform to consider modding for actual bass players as well as a great quality beginner bass. Everyone should enjoy this deal – including guitarists like me!
Ben Rogerson, Deputy Editor
I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, which means I write and commission all kinds of ‘content’, testing some great gear along the way. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years.
Yamaha Reface CP:
Was $449.99, now $349.99
I’ve owned lots of keyboards down the years, but one of the ones I’ve always hankered after but never got round to buying is the Yamaha Reface CP. Now might be the time to put that right, though, as this cracking little ‘vintage’ electric piano is currently available at a $100 discount. It comes with six old-school sounds (plus a ‘secret’ acoustic piano), great hands-on effects and built-in speakers. A battery power option makes the CP properly portable, too, so no one will ever be able to escape the sound of my playing.
IK Multimedia iLoud Micro:
$349.99, now $149.99
They might not be IK Multimedia’s best monitors, but the iLoud Micros still pack a mighty punch, and remain an excellent option for bedroom studio warriors or anyone who needs a pair of speakers that they can take on the road. In fact, I’ve had a set sitting on my desk for several years now; they were always pretty good value, but at just $200 for a pair, they’re a snip. Each speaker contains a 3/4-inch silk dome tweeter, a 3-inch paper cone performance woofer, and a large flaring front-firing bass reflex port. There’s Bluetooth support, too, so if you want to use them for music listening, you can stream wirelessly from your phone.
Shure Aonic 40 headphones:
Was $199, now $99
There are lots of pairs of noise-cancelling wireless headphones on the market, but the Aonic 40s still manages to offer standout performance. Released in 2022, they sound superb, whether you’re using them at home or they’re helping to lessen the misery of a long-haul flight. Originally retailing for $249, the Aonic 40s have since been reduced to $199, but Sweetwater is currently offering them at the frankly insane price of just $99. I’m almost tempted to buy another pair.
Simon Arblaster, Video & Reviews Producer
I look after the Reviews section on MusicRadar and am a bit partial to writing the odd guitar, drum, synth and general techy review every now and then. I'll review the lot, me.
Focal Listen Pro:
Was $299, now $254
Sweetwater is offering a juicy $45 off these great closed-back all-rounders. These, I must add, are some of the most comfortable studio monitoring headphones I've had the pleasure of wearing, even over extended periods of time in the studio, and they're also number one in our guide to the best studio headphones. Overall, the Listen Pros are some of the most honest headphones I've come across in a long time.
Baby Audio Industry Pro Bundle:
£249, now £159
I've yet to try the new Andrew Huang collab, Transit, but it ticks a lot of boxes for me. And despite already being an avid user of TAIP, I'm fine with buying the odd plugin twice when a deal is this good. The bundle also includes Baby Audio's first softsynth, the BA-1. At full price, the overall value for all 10 products comes to £659.98, so at just £159, you're saving a whopping £500.98 compared to buying them individually. Even though it had already been discounted, this further reduction is crazy.
ASM Hydrasynth Explorer:
Was $599, now $499
One of my favourite synth releases in recent years is the Hydrasynth from Ashun Sound Machines. The fact that ASM managed to squeeze everything into a portable format, especially polyphonic aftertouch in a mid-size keybed is ideal for me as I have little to no room in my home studio. The only downside is fewer controls on the interface, but if you can bear to ditch the keyboard for the module version, or have deep enough pockets for the larger models, then you're in luck as Sweetwater has deals on all Hydrasynth models.
Matt Mullen, Tech Features Editor
I cover music technology here at MusicRadar, working on everything from artist interviews to tech tutorials. Though I have been known to dabble in the instrumental world, my primary focus is the weird and wonderful sounds made by electronic musicians and the ever-widening array of tools we use to make them.
Was $503, now $258.32
I interview a lot of producers here at MusicRadar, and across all of those conversations, there’s one software brand that gets mentioned more than any other: Soundtoys. When I tried these out for myself I was seriously impressed- these effects are easy to use and sound fantastic. Bringing together 21 plugins in one bundle, Soundtoys 5 features its new SuperPlate plate reverb, popular pitch and formant-shifter Little AlterBoy, beloved saturation and distortion tools Decapitator and Devil-Loc, versatile delays like PrimalTap and EchoBoy, chorus and widening effects such as Crystallizer and Microshift... need we go on? This is a stonking amount of effects processing goodness for a phenomenal price.
Arturia V Collection 9:
Was $599, now $299
V Collection 9 is one of the most (if not the most) popular bundles of synth plugins on the planet, and for good reason. This suite of 33 software instruments brings together emulations of some of the most beloved analogue synthesizers, digital samplers, electric pianos, keyboards, and organs in musical history, including the Korg MS-20, EMS Synthi, Yamaha, CS-80 ARP 2600, Mellotron, Fairlight CMI, Roland Juno-6, and Jupiter-8. I’ve lost hours playing around with V Collection’s 14,000 expertly crafted presets - I’m sure you will too.
Glitchmachines Fracture XT:
Was $49, now $5
An inspiring and creative multi-effects plugin that I regularly use in my own productions (shout out the Little Driller preset!) Fracture XT is designed for granular processing. Though it also offers a delay, dual multimode filters, and 4 LFOs, these play second fiddle to Fracture's granular capabilities and its buffer effects processor, both of which slice and dice your sounds into chaotic new forms, shredding source signals into tiny pieces and reassembling them to create mind-bending soundscapes. All that for the price of a cup of coffee!
Chris Barnes, eCommerce Editor (Music)
I'm MusicRadar's eCommerce Editor. It's my job to manage the buyer's guides on the site and help musicians find the right gear and the best prices. My first love is playing the drums - I spent 7 years as Editor of the UK's best-selling drum magazine Rhythm - but I also play a bit of guitar.
Positive Grid Spark Go:
Was $129, now $99
As a new dad, getting time to play guitar is super limited, but the Spark Go has enabled me to grab a few minutes of me-and-my-guitar-time without any faff and, crucially, without waking the baby thanks to the headphone input. It's a superb mini amp that streaks ahead of the competition with thousands of tones at your fingertips via the Spark app. It's also rechargeable and still gets loud when you need it to.
Was $1,899, now $1,429
I loved this kit when we had it in for review for the excellent sounds, tweakable module and the fantastic TCS pads which are an excellent alternative to mesh, in my opinion. Today you can save a huge $470 at Sweetwater. We've never seen discounts like this on Yamaha e-kits before so if you've been on the hunt for one, today is your day.
Guitar Tricks annual subscription: $99 + freebies!
With the best price of the year on a Full Access annual subscription, now is a great time to sign up to Guitar Tricks if you want to improve your playing in 2024. You also get hundreds of dollars of extras, including a custom lesson plan, access to one premium Bootcamp, a copy of Guitar Tricks’ Ultimate Beginner Guide and exclusive access to their brand new 100 Essential Licks video series. If you’re serious about learning the guitar, or getting better, this deal should be top of your list.
Daryl Robertson, Senior Deals Writer
I'm a Senior Deals Writer at MusicRadar, and I'm responsible for writing and maintaining buyer's guides on the site - but that's not all I do. As part of my role, I also scour the internet for the best deals I can find on gear and get hands-on with the products for reviews.
Squier Classic Vibe Jag:
Was $499.99, now $399.99
I love offset guitars and the Fender Jaguar is one of my favorites. Now, in a world where guitars are only getting more and more expensive, it’s difficult not to recommend turning to a more budget-friendly brand like Squier. This retro-inspired '60s Jag in the eye-catching Silver Sparkle finish has all the vintage charm of the original, with an effortlessly playable neck, superb pickups, and a very modest price tag. Save $100 at Fender.
EarthQuaker Devices Hoof V2:
$179, now $143.20
When it comes to fuzz pedals, my go-to is the classic Russian Big Muff, so it’s only natural that one of my favourite pedals from EarthQuaker Devices is the Hoof - which is loosely based on that iconic circuit. Featuring a hybrid Germanium/Silicon design, this fuzz is seriously versatile and a lot of fun to experiment with. So, if you’re in the market for a new fuzz, then I highly recommend checking this one out.
Fender Vintera '50s P-Bass:
As well as being a guitarist, I’m also a keen bass player. I played bass in a classic rock tribute band, playing covers of everything from Led Zep to Black Sabbath, Rush, Free, Deep Purple, and AC/DC. My weapon of choice was a red and gold Fender P-Bass we nicknamed J.A.R.V.I.S. due to its resemblance to Iron Man. I’ve always loved the tone of the Precision Bass and this offer is the best I’ve seen on the legendary bass. Save a whopping 30% at Fender.
Matt McCracken, Junior Deals Writer
I’ve been a musician for well over 20 years in a variety of different bands playing everything from djent to jazz. As an intrepid explorer of sound, I’m always seeking out new gear for my own projects whether it be new pedals or plugins. In my role as Junior Deals Writer my job is to review and recommend products to our readers, as well as find the best deals possible on all kinds of gear.
Was $359, now $269
I’m guilty of having way too many plugins I never use, but FabFilter Pro-Q has been a permanent member of my favorite lists for years and years now. For me, the interface is so easy to use, and it’s my go-to for subtractive EQ moves when I need surgical precision. This essentials bundle contains Pro-Q 3, the Pro-C 2 compressor, and the brand new Pro-R 2 reverb plugin, with a tasty $90 reduction on the regular price. Many producers make the common mistake of slamming a track with plugins when they could probably get a much better result from the correct application of just these three eminently useful plugins.
Line 6 Helix Native:
Was $399.99, now $199.99
Before I bought my HX Stomp I admit I baulked at the cost of Line 6 Helix Native. For a standalone plugin, it sits at a wince-inducing price point but once I upgraded to Helix Native I realized what an incredible bit of software it really is. The sounds of the amps are simply astounding and the choice of effects is unrivalled. I use it for creating the weirdest sounds possible, and I love that you get intermittent updates with fresh models for no extra cost. It’s currently half-price in the Sweetwater Cyber Week sale at the moment, which is as cheap as I’ve seen it this year.
Yamaha HS5 studio monitors: Up to $125 off
I love recording sounds whether it’s guitars, synths, drums, or vocals but it wasn’t until I got my set of HS5s that I realized just how crap some of my mixes were. These monitors are unflinchingly honest and I admit I was dismayed when I first played back my songs through them. Over the years I’ve come to realize just how much these monitors have helped me improve my mixing, thanks to their flat frequency response and superb clarity. There’s up to $125 off at Guitar Center on HS5, HS7, HS8, and the HS subwoofer too.