Rig Rundown: Charly Sahona (Sahona & Venturia)

Charly Sahona

My name is Charly Sahona, and I am a guitar player, singer, keyboardist and songwriter of the bands Venturia (progressive metal) and Sahona (rock/progressive). I released 5 albums with my own projects and did a bunch of guest appearances on various albums. In the next couple of paragraphs you can read about my guitar rig that I use both in studio while recording or live.


Ibanez RG 7620

I’ve been a long time Ibanez 7 string user. This Ibanez is the first 7 string guitar I got in the early 2000′s. I really wanted to have a 7-string guitar as I was (and I’m still) a big fan of Dream Theater, Korn and Meshuggah. Low riffs were everything I wanted to play when it came about playing and writing metal songs … And to date, I can tell you I’m still the same guy.

This one has a basswood body, Dimarzio pickups and a Lo Pro Edge tremolo bridge. Amazing playability when it comes to shred on it.

Ibanez RG 7680 LTD

This one is my favorite in terms of sound. I’ve recorded all the Venturia albums with this one. It sounds amazing and very precised when you riff on the B-string as the longer scale length allows you a better intonation, low-end response, more consistent tension and attack especially when you play on the first frets.

Ibanez RG1527M-GW

This is the main one that I use, especially on stage. Looks gorgeous in my opinion.

I switched the Ibanez pickups for EMG 81-7XH and 60-7XH pickups and it took the sound to another level… More warmth, power, sustain, clarity and versatility.

Ibanez RG 2027 X

I like this one a lot and even more since I switched the Ibanez pickups for EMG 57-7H and 60-7H. It also have an active piezo pickup saddles for acoustic-like sound. This is the one I mainly used for the recording of my last album “Sahona.”

Ibanez J-Custom Art 1

This is the very first Ibanez I got, and it’s just a beautiful instrument. It looks like the old Petrucci Ibanez model. This is the only 6-string Ibanez guitar I have. I’m so used to the sound of the 7 string guitars that It feels like something’s wrong when I play on this one. I changed the pickups for EMG H2A-N and H4A.

Ibanez RGIR28FE

This is my first (and only to date) 8-string that was released in 2013. It was among the first guitars produced under the Iron Label branding. It’s not a Prestige model with an amazing finish and there’s no tremolo on it and that’s the only thing I regret not to have on this one. However, it’s a great instrument that allows new possibilities. I only use it for metal playing.


Line 6 Helix

I’ve always been a Line 6 user. Using digital modelers on stage is so useful and easy to use. Ok you don’t have the 3D dimensional sound sensation. But as I’ve been playing with an In-Ear monitor system for ages it’s not a problem for me. It’s the perfect solution for a gigging musician. This way, you save your back and I don’t have to deal with tube amps issues due to the weather conditions and the bad treatment of the truck transport like I used to.

I guess I’ve used all the Line 6′s Pod series but I have to say that the Helix is way beyond good compared to the previous Pod series. The only thing that disappointed me a little bit at first was the lack of dynamic and realism compared to the Kemper and Fractal units. But as the Helix gives you the opportunity to download and use different IR’s, it brings the sound to another level and it responds the way a real amp would now that I use the Ownhammer and the 3 Sigma audio IR’s.

A must have unit.


Mesa-Boogie Mark V

Believe me or not but my friend used to make fun of me as I was the only guitar player they knew who didn’t have any real amp. As I was fed up with the mistreatment of my equipment during a tour I decided not to use any tube amp or multi-effects solid units anymore on stage. But when I was about to record albums in studios I was asking my friends to lend me more serious equipment.

However, 2 years ago I decided to get the best amp on the planet as a friend of mine was about to sell one of his Mesa Boogie Mark V. I wanted to have the amp of my dreams and finally got it. Now I have one and I’m using it for recording only. Best way to keep it safe and alive. It’s such a bliss to play with. Playing it makes your guitar feel so alive… I’m in love with this amp, definitely.

Two-Notes Torpedo Reload

Although I have a Mesa Boogie 2X12 Recto cab I use the amazing Two-Notes technology to record my amp. For home and studio recording, I use the Two-Notes Torpedo Reload unit. It is the ideal combination of the devices you must have in a modern studio for the recording of electric guitars and basses. It’s a power attenuator, a multi-impedance loadbox, a DI and re-amping box. This way I can record my amp into my DAW (I’m using Logic Pro 9 and X) using the Two-Notes’ Wall of Sound III speaker-cab simulation plug-in.

Two-Notes is an amazing company, we live in the same city in the south of France and I’m proud to collaborate with them. They are boss at offering us the possibility to use traditional tube/solid state amplifiers without using cabs whatever the conditions, at home, in the studio or on stage. And now they also have released their own preamp series.

Charly Sahona:


Cover photo by Laloo Photography