Mercuriall ReAxis Review

Mercuriall ReAxis Review

The Mesa Boogie Triaxis is one of the classic preamps of the nineties, used by bands such as Dream Theater and Metallica. It’s only fitting someone made a virtual recreation of it and Mercuriall have done just that with the ReAxis.

ReAxis Layout

When you fire up the ReAxis you’re greeted with the classic Triaxis style control panel. It certainly makes a change but it is initially strange seeing all of the glowing digits and buttons instead of knobs. Along the top of the screen, you have the usual input and output controls along with a handy row of buttons for instantly switching the various elements on and off.

Preamp effects consist of a noise gate, wah pedal and overdrive. Switch to the cabinet section and you find a variety of cabinet options plus the power amp controls. Post FX comprise of chorus, reverb and delay.

Mercuriall have managed to squeeze a lot of options into the three main screens but have also kept things as simple as possible. Never an easy task. At first, it does look slightly confusing but you soon get used to where everything is and how it all works.

In Use

I must admit, it took a bit of time to get used to the ReAxis. Having never used a Triaxis I didn’t realise the controls work a little differently to a regular amp. I actually downloaded a Triaxis instruction manual and then things started to make sense. Just like the Triaxis, the Reaxis has eight different modes based on different Mesa Boogie amps. These are all different preamp circuit configurations so the range of tone is surprisingly wide. The clean tones are very impressive and the crunchier modes are perfect for blues. I wasn’t expecting the clean to be so good but Mesa Boogie amps do have some legendary clean tones so I guess it makes sense. They are great for a whole range of sounds but I couldn’t resist adding some chorus and delay to emulate John Petrucci’s Dream Theater cleans and the ReAxis doesn’t disappoint.

The real fun for me was switching to the yellow and red modes of LD2. This is where the best high gain tones live. James Hetfield used a number of Triaxis preamps as part of his live rig for years and it doesn’t take long to dial in those classic Metallica style tones. When I was a teenager I would have loved to have had these kinds of sounds. It’s amazing how close you can get nowadays with a plugin.

Add a drive pedal and lead tones jump out with clarity and articulation. Classic Petrucci liquid lead sounds are easily achieved and the range of effects perfectly compliment the base tones.

Mercuriall ReAxis Review

The cabinet section allows you to fine-tune your tone with a range of cabinets and positional microphones. You can also load in your own impulse responses. Always a nice feature to have and it’s quickly becoming a standard addition in modern plugins.

The poweramp section has three different valves to choose from along with master and presence controls. I found the presence particularly useful for bringing out some extra definition if things ever got muddy.

The included effects should cover enough extra sounds for most people. Each one has plenty of control options and they all sound great. The delay and reverb are the stars of the show for me. Whether you’re looking for beautiful ambient tones or want to add them to your lead sound to really make it stand out, they’re more than capable. The chorus sounds huge too. I added it to a very dirty amp sound and was greeted with instant Zakk Wylde tones.

One thing I wasn’t expecting from the ReAxis was how good it is for more modern style distorted tones. I was expecting all of the classic eighties and nineties style sounds but add the overdrive pedal and things can get very dirty and aggressive. With the right EQ and speaker choices, it can still keep up if modern metal tones are more your thing.

Conclusion

As a teenager in the nineties, I used to drool over photos of my guitar hero’s racks when I was reading guitar magazines. Now it’s actually possible to have digital recreations of them for a very reasonable price. And most importantly, the tones are incredibly close. Although I found the ReAxis slightly confusing to start with it’s actually pretty simple once you’ve worked it out. The range of tones is huge and you can easily cover a wide range of styles thanks to the different amp modes and excellent effects. Being a recreation of a single preamp, it’s never going to cover as much ground as a wide range of different amps. But when the original had so many options to begin with you certainly have a lot to work with. If you’re a fan of the classic Mesa Boogie tones then the ReAxis is a must-own product.

Rating 9/10

The Mercuriall ReAxis is available from https://mercuriall.com for $89.99
There is also a demo version available.

Mercuriall ReAxis Demo Video