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Digital music

Amanda Ghassaei has developed a technique for converting digital audio files of virtually ...

Like many music lovers today, I have a huge digital library and even though I've now converted much of my vinyl collection to MP3, I still return to my racks often. I've not really considered the possibility of converting my MP3/OGG/FLAC files into 12-inch records ... until now. While exploring the limits of today's 3D-printing technology, digital music tinkerer Amanda Ghassaei has come up with a technique for converting digital audio files of virtually any format into 3D-printed, 33.3 RPM records that can be played on any ordinary turntable.  Read More

A retrospective of the best weird and wonderful instruments of 2012

Should you find yourself thinking about supergroups, you'll likely center on the famous names that make up the bands and not the instruments they use. Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page, for example, rather than the double-necked Gibson EDS-1275, or Cream's Jack Bruce instead of his Gibson EB-3, or Brad Wilk of Audioslave/RATM and not the custom Gretsch drumkits he uses. Being as much fans of the tech behind the hits as the talented folks who create them, we've grouped together a super collection of favorite music-making gadgets from the past year.  Read More

Artiphon has released the first teaser images of its forthcoming INSTRUMENT 1 pro-level mu...

There is no doubt that smartphone- and tablet-based apps have had a huge impact on music creation. While there seems to be plenty of plastic devices that extend functionality and creativity beyond the touchscreen (from the toy-like Fingerist to the iTar), if you yearn for wood then you're options are a little less abundant. After spending two years in development, the first images of Artiphon's intriguing, hardwood-bodied INSTRUMENT 1 for iPhone have been released ahead of a product launch in early 2013.  Read More

BassNation Audio has released the BlackBox speaker system, which can be used with any devi...

Like the just-released Hanwell from Marshall, the BlackBox speaker system from BassNation Audio has the look of a guitar amp but delivers its quality audio amplification payload for a fraction of the price. Any device sporting either a 3.5-mm jack or RCA phono outputs can be used as an audio source (TVs, games consoles, smartphones and music players, for example), and multiple units can be stacked on top of each other for increased volume ... and some extra points in the cool department.  Read More

The Olive ONE brings all of your digital music together

San Francisco-based audio manufacturer Olive has launched some audiophile-level digital music hardware in the past, but the new ONE promises to be its most stylish, consumer-friendly offering yet. Olive calls the touchscreen-based music player "the world's first all-in-one HD music player."  Read More

panGenerator's Dodecaudion is a 12-faced music controller that can trigger audio or video ...

Moving around the stage while performing is a whole lot easier with instruments such as the Vortex or Kitara than with something like the mighty JUPITER-80. Innovations like Onyx Ashanti's Beatjazz hands or the Air Piano from Omer Yosha go even further, by making movement a vital part of the music creation process. Such is the case with the Dodecaudion from Polish art and design group panGenerator. When a performer places a hand, foot, head or other part of the body in front of any of its 12 IR-sensor-packing faces, wirelessly-linked processing hardware generates pre-programmed audio or visuals.  Read More

Grace Digital has launched the gdock speaker dock for Samsung Galaxy and Note

Grace Digital is following the release of a speaker dock specifically designed for Amazon's Kindle Fire called the MatchStick, with the launch of the gdock for Samsung Galaxy and Note devices.  Read More

Moritz Simon Geist has built a huge mechanical homage to Roland's iconic TR-808 drum machi...

If you're a fan of 1980s music, then there's a very good chance that you'll already be familiar with the electronic beats provided by what's widely regarded as the drum machine that started it all, Roland's TR-808. It set the mood for Marvin Gaye's Sexual Healing, fired shots at David Byrne in the concert movie Stop Making Sense and was the inspiration for the naming of the band 808 State. In his own homage to the iconic device, electronic music tinkerer Moritz Simon Geist has mechanically reproduced 11 of its key sounds using real instruments played by robots within the supersized, wall-filling frame of the stunning MR-808.  Read More

Roland has unveiled a highly portable electronic drum set that can fold up small enough to...

Surely no working drummer would seriously entertain the use of drum pants or t-shirts to make the burden of transporting and setting up a kit a little easier, but even conventional acoustic skin bashers might give electronic drums a whirl. The e-drumkit takes up much less room in the back of the band's van, is always in tune and can sound just like the real thing, or just about anything else you might want the various pads to sound like. In the case of Roland's new TD-4KP V-Drums Portable, the whole setup can be collapsed down and carried under the arm.  Read More

Jamboxx is a harmonica-like breath-driven digital instrument that can be played and contro...

Digital wind controllers like the Morrison Digital Trumpet give players the power to go beyond mere instrument clones and make virtually any instrument or sound available to the musician. More recently, Ashanti's Beatjazz Hands combined breath, pressure and motion sensors to bring gestures into the equation and free him from the confines of a computer screen. The problem in using such systems for folks with limited cognitive abilities or physical disability is that they can't effectively be used hands-free. A skiing accident in the 1980s left Dave Whalen a quadriplegic, and his burning desire to continue making music has led to the development of Jamboxx, a harmonica-like digital instrument that can be played and controlled using just the head.  Read More

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