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Music


— Music

Use your iPhone to change the effects on the iStomp pedal

The never-ending quest for killer effects pedals is an expensive and time-consuming passion that most electric guitar players will have to endure for much of their playing careers (unless you're lucky enough to hit on the perfect setup early on, of course). Effects veteran DigiTech has developed a stompbox that could well put that quest to bed. The iStomp effects pedal effectively starts life as a blank canvas onto which the user paints a wall of sound in the shape of a downloadable effect. Just like any other stompbox, the new pedal allows for fine adjustment of tone with parameter knobs, but if you fancy a brand new flavor of distortion or a completely different reverb to the one which is resident on the pedal, you can just buy the effect from DigiTech's online store and download it onto the iStomp via your iOS device. Read More
— Music

This record player reads tree rings instead of LPs

Artists often say they can find music in everything, particularly nature. The question they often face is how to get the general public to hear the same tune that they do. One German artist, Bartholomäus Traubeck, seems to have hit on one straightforward method to accomplish this with some clever technology. Using a digital camera and some software, the artist has built a unique record player that spins cross-sections of trees instead of vinyl and translates the rings into piano music. Read More
— Music

Roland and Fender announce the G-5 Stratocaster with COSM technology

Roland and Fender have joined forces to create a guitar called the G-5, that fuses a traditional Stratocaster body shape with cutting edge digital music technology. Set to hit the shelves a few months before either of the Auto-Tune guitars from Peavey and Parker, the VG Strat G-5 offers similar alternate tuning at the turn of a knob, a host of onboard digital guitar emulations and the chance to dial in different pickup and signature guitar sounds, too. Read More
— Music

iRig MIX compact mobile mixer for the mobile DJ

Apps that transform an iOS device into a portable DJ system (such as Algoriddim's djay app) have been around for a good while now, but the restricted screen space on small devices can lead to somewhat limited mixing functionality. Budding party disc jockeys can get more control from physical deck emulators like Numark's iDJ Live, but those with an appetite for real-time mixing of music stored on more than one device have now been catered for with the upcoming release of the iRig MIX from IK Multimedia. This compact mobile mixer can auto match the tempo from any type of audio source with the tunes on a connected iOS device, features an extra input for an instrument or microphone, and comes with four free music apps. Read More
— Music

PocketStrings takes guitar practice on the road

Guitarists don't like to be parted from their guitars. Even as a rank amateur, I get a nagging itch in my fingers after a couple of axeless weeks on the road. But guitars take up a lot of space and they are expensive to haul with you on a plane, so I often find myself seeking out music shops just so I can have a noodle. It's exactly this kind of affliction that PocketStrings is designed to address. It's not an instrument and it doesn't make a sound, but this portable mock-up of the first four frets of a guitar could help you satisfy the playing itch as well as giving beginners and more experienced players a take-anywhere tool on which to practice chords and build finger strength while keeping your calluses tough. Read More
— Music

Fender announces first ever multi-effects unit - the Mustang Floor

We've been treated to a number of Fender stomp boxes over the years - like the classic Fender Blender and BOSS collaborations like the '65 Deluxe Reverb - but the iconic manufacturer has never gathered all its tone tweaking know-how into one big bundle ... until now. The new Mustang Floor brings together dozens of effects, amp modeling and computer interaction into one rather attractive multi-effects unit. Read More
— Music

The Vortex: the world's first USB/MIDI Keytar Controller

Noted rock vocalist and bass player Glenn Hughes (Trapeze, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, and more recently Black Country Communion) has often been quoted as saying that, for him, much of the 1980s was just a blur. It's probably just as well, or he might have had a hard time dealing with the emergence of the keytar - a strap-on keyboard that has a little neck with a number of parameter-changing buttons on it. Okay, I admit it, I'm not a great fan of the Jan Hammers and Jean-Michel Jarres of this world, but those who want to emulate these digital music innovators without digging deep for a Korg, Roland or Moog original can now rejoice with the release of the world's first USB/MIDI keytar - the Vortex from Alesis. Read More
— Music

Peavey Electronics and Parker Guitars first to launch Auto-Tune guitars

The sound and feel of modern music was changed forever in the late 1990s when Antares launched its Auto-Tune pitch correction technology. As well as putting some life back into flat performances, the system was also used to great effect by the likes of Cher and T-Pain to give a unique twist to vocal tracks. The company announced its intention to bring the technology to the electric guitar in May 2011, sending shivers down the spines of purists everywhere. Now Peavey and Parker have launched the first guitars to incorporate Auto-Tune for Guitar and we've had the chance to take a closer look at the former's AT-200 in action at Winter NAMM in Anaheim. The verdict: pretty impressive. Read More
— Music

Mogees turns any rigid surface into a musical instrument

Mogees is great news for all the air guitarists out there. This tiny device, built by Bruno Zamborlin for his Arts and Computational Technologies PhD project, offers a whole new way of expressing yourself musically, even if you don’t have the slightest idea how to play an instrument. Mogees, or a “Mosaicing Gestural Surface," is based on a simple contact microphone that turns any hard surface into a musical interface for triggering audio samples. What sets Mogees apart from other interfaces of this kind is that different types of touch stimuli generate different output. Simple gestures like scratching, rubbing or tapping can produce a surprising array of sounds worthy of a serious experimental music set up. Read More
— Music

Soundmatters foxLO claims to be world's "first palm-sized hi-fi subwoofer"

Soundmatters has announced a new speaker designed to bring some low frequency oomph to its portable foxLv2 Bluetooth and non-Bluetooth brethren. The new foxLO, which Soundmatters calls “the world’s first palm-sized hi-fi subwoofer,” plugs directly into foxLv2 speaker’s subwoofer output but will also work with other branded portable speakers, such as the Jawbone Jambox, thanks to the inclusion of a 3.5 mm full pass-through output. Read More
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