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Re: Does Anyone Care About MIDI Guitar? [Re: The Real MC] #3014631 11/02/19 12:33 AM
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Originally Posted by The Real MC
Now simulating overdriven power chord guitar on synths... that's not easy. I never liked samples, too monotonous. Power chord guitar is so dynamic. ...


I've had the same experience. In the 80's I covered a LOT of rhythm guitar parts on keys. Luckily one of my favorite albums was Three Dog Night - Live at the Forum. Listening to it 1000 times help me take the "rhythm organ" approach. I had a Hammond and Leslie. At the time I never realized how much Jimmy Greenspoon affected my playing. We constantly focus on musicians that rip. He taught me how to support a guitarist and band in a 4 piece guitar/bass/drum/keyboard setup. 30 years later, after all of the advancement of ROMplers, I might still choose that approach if I had a real tone wheel organ and tube leslie.

Re: Does Anyone Care About MIDI Guitar? [Re: Anderton] #3014699 11/02/19 06:21 PM
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And... back to MIDI guitars.
I remembered that a friend of mine has a Godin nylon string "Tele" with the jack for Roland synth systems built in.
He's bought Roland modules a couple of times, the second time I got to play with it for an hour or so.
It triggered well, I didn't have time to explore much, just preset surfing.
Nylon strings are very different than steel, I like them for what they are but they don't respond to stretching notes or vibrato in the same way.
Plus the neck was a bit thin for my tastes. It did seem usable in terms of the synth and sample sounds. In the end, he sold the units both times and I probably would have done the same.

Godin makes steel string guitars with the Roland option as well. Nice instruments but again, not my preference for neck sizing - an important factor.

This looks interesting. If I am not mistaken, every time you stretch a string the system will either lose track (with a long bend) or since the distance from bridge to fret has not changed the note will not change either.
https://newatlas.com/laser-system-detects-guitar-string-pitch/19278/

A long time ago a friend of mine built a pickup for his guitar using beams of light to detect the strings. There were other light beam pickups then and still are - https://www.willcoxguitars.com/lightwave-optical-pickup-system/.

The advantages would be zero magnetic field, the ability to have completely discreet pickup from each string. The primary disadvantage I can see is the area above the strings must be covered, hampering picking technique, which may not matter in an instrument used purely for MIDI. My searches did not yeild any MIDI guitar setups utilizing light beam pickups, anybody find one?

Another fairly interesting article from 2016 so reasonably current.
https://www.premierguitar.com/articles/23660-decoding-modern-midi-guitar

I'm thinking that strings themselves inherently have problems that will not be easy (or even possible) to overcome for now. AI may change all that but is not there yet and who knows when that will happen.

For playing any MIDI related sounds, keyboards still win, electronic drums still win and even electronic "wind" instruments still win.
I'll get what I can out of my Triple Play and limited keyboard skills and just keep playing guitar!!!!


There is never enough time to be in a hurry...
Re: Does Anyone Care About MIDI Guitar? [Re: Anderton] #3014705 11/02/19 07:17 PM
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My favorite "mostly guitar-like" controller was the Beetle Quantar. It used all the same string gauge, and ultrasonic detection on each string to determine where you were fretting. The tracking was excellent, but at the time, guitarists were put off by the strings all being the same, and having no relation to what was coming out of the guitar.

Yamaha's G10 "dustbuster" MIDI guitar used the same principle (come to think of it, there may have been legal issues with Beetle/Yamaha - not sure who was first), but it failed for probably the same reasons.

I think guitarists are more accepting of the fact that if they want to trigger MIDI instruments, they'll need to compromise with what's considered a "guitar." Maybe it's time for the ultrasonic-based system to make a comeback.

Re: Does Anyone Care About MIDI Guitar? [Re: Anderton] #3014708 11/02/19 07:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Anderton
My favorite "mostly guitar-like" controller was the Beetle Quantar. It used all the same string gauge, and ultrasonic detection on each string to determine where you were fretting. The tracking was excellent, but at the time, guitarists were put off by the strings all being the same, and having no relation to what was coming out of the guitar.

Yamaha's G10 "dustbuster" MIDI guitar used the same principle (come to think of it, there may have been legal issues with Beetle/Yamaha - not sure who was first), but it failed for probably the same reasons.

I think guitarists are more accepting of the fact that if they want to trigger MIDI instruments, they'll need to compromise with what's considered a "guitar." Maybe it's time for the ultrasonic-based system to make a comeback.


I could live with same diameter strings. I like that the Quantar uses what appears to be a standard neck pocket. I could bolt a neck I prefer on there!
For me, a big attraction of Triple Play was being able to use my own guitar.

I've messed with all sorts of things but have never seen a Quantar. I even briefly owned one of those Casio thingies with the plastic strings, I think it is a "cult classic" because it is so cheesey and terrible.
Became a quick "thrift store flip" and on to the next.

I have a couple of friends who are very good with keyboards, maybe I can just trade some guitar tracks for key tracks. :- D


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Re: Does Anyone Care About MIDI Guitar? [Re: Anderton] #3014755 11/03/19 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Anderton
My favorite "mostly guitar-like" controller was the Beetle Quantar. It used all the same string gauge, and ultrasonic detection on each string to determine where you were fretting. The tracking was excellent, but at the time, guitarists were put off by the strings all being the same, and having no relation to what was coming out of the guitar.

Yamaha's G10 "dustbuster" MIDI guitar used the same principle (come to think of it, there may have been legal issues with Beetle/Yamaha - not sure who was first), but it failed for probably the same reasons.

I think guitarists are more accepting of the fact that if they want to trigger MIDI instruments, they'll need to compromise with what's considered a "guitar." Maybe it's time for the ultrasonic-based system to make a comeback.


I was always willing to compromise, in order to have access to MIDI from a Guitar-shaped controller. My first MIDI "Guitar" was a Suzuki XG-1m, which I think you had reviewed for EM magazine, way back? Plastic toy configuration, but it worked, for much less money than anything else I could find at the time. It didn't even feel as much like a Guitar as the plastic Casio Digital Guitars, but like I say, it worked.

There's an old expression about not letting the perfect become the enemy of the good, or something to that effect. Every Guitar-to-MIDI system I've tried has required some kind of compromise, even at best. I try to make the system work for me, which requires putting in some time and effort, but time and effort is what separates those of us in here from the folks who gave up after trying to play their first Barre Chord.

It seems, in answer to the question posed at the top of this thread, that some of us do still care about MIDI Guitar. Count me in.


"Monsters are real, and Ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win." Stephen King

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Re: Does Anyone Care About MIDI Guitar? [Re: Anderton] #3014938 11/04/19 09:09 PM
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I think the "9" series of Electro Harmonix pedals has scratched the itch of many guitarists looking for synth, Hammond, and Mellotron sounds. They are really phenomenal in the hands of a competent and open minded guitarist.

Is anyone here using a MIDI guitar to just play non-essential drones and pads underneath their real guitar sound? I always thought that might be the sweet spot. I sold a lot of Roland rigs, but I never saw any of them really utilized well.


"For instance" is not proof.
Re: Does Anyone Care About MIDI Guitar? [Re: Anderton] #3015043 11/05/19 06:40 PM
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I say bring these bad boys back!



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Re: Does Anyone Care About MIDI Guitar? [Re: Danzilla] #3015083 11/06/19 12:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Danzilla
I say bring these bad boys back!



Maybe they could make them just a wee bit less hideous? :- D
That thing is butt-ugly to a mud fence!!!


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Re: Does Anyone Care About MIDI Guitar? [Re: KuruPrionz] #3015087 11/06/19 01:24 AM
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Originally Posted by KuruPrionz
Originally Posted by Danzilla
I say bring these bad boys back!



Maybe they could make them just a wee bit less hideous? :- D
That thing is butt-ugly to a mud fence!!!



IIRC they were really expensive, too.

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