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Gibson NAMM news.


zeronyne

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Gibson Guitar plans to exhibit a variety of new products at this year's Summer NAMM show. Among the expected features at the booth are the company's first production offering of the digital guitar and the new Synapse line of Steinberger guitars and basses. Gibson Labs will also offer a limited edition Les Paul Jr. amplifier with plexiglass cabinet.

 

The limited-run of digital guitars are designed for Gibson dealers to demonstrate the capabilities of digital technology to guitar players. Utilizing Gibson's patented MaGIC digital transport protocol, the Gibson Digital offers six separate digital signals - one for each string - providing the player with myriad tonal and panning possibilities. The limited run will feature a metallic blue finish and special tuners and control knobs.

 

The new Steinberger Synapse line features the latest innovations from engineer Ned Steinberger, who broke free from traditional design in 1980 by introducing a bass with a rectangular body, headless construction and carbon-fiber materials. "The Synapse guitar incorporates all the tweaks and improvements that have been brewing in my mind ever since the original Steinberger GL-series guitar went into production over 20 years ago," Steinberger said. Innovations include a TransScale neck with integrated capo and custom electronics, pieze bridge pickup, a strap extension for better balance and string clamps to accept conventional strings as well as the traditional double-ball end type.

"For instance" is not proof.

 

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Every year. Year after year.

 

big press announcements, no product.

 

I -hope- to see a real prototype with a practical application. Better than the display of Les Pauls that had their 1/4" jacks replaced with plastic ethernet connectors that they put on display the first year.

 

First year of announcement dialog between me and the booth went something like this:

 

Bill: "Okay. What does it do?"

 

Gibson Rep: "Uhhh..... it's digital. You can control things from the guitar. Like effects and amps."

 

Bill: "But there are no new controls."

 

Gibson Rep: "uhhhh... the guy who knows about this is at lunch."

 

Bill: "Got any literature on this so that I can read up on it."

 

Gibson Rep: "Just the one copy that we have here. You can look it over, though."

 

(The 'guy who knew' never seemed to be around.)

 

Last year they had replaced the 1/4" connector, and the cheesey wall-mount ethernet jack had become one of the new and far more durable Switchcraft connectors. But they were still dummies.

 

At this rate I don't expect the actual, purchaseable product to ship for quite a while. But I'm hoping that the prototypes have a purpose.

 

Bill

"I believe that entertainment can aspire to be art, and can become art, but if you set out to make art you're an idiot."

 

Steve Martin

 

Show business: we're all here because we're not all there.

 

 

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Dang why are people so hard on Gibson?If you

don't like what they offer don't buy it.

 

http://www.lespaulforum.com/slub2/thumbnails/msg59_t.jpghttp://www.smileytown.com/content/emot/love0002.gif

The story of life is quicker then the blink of an eye, the story of love is hello, goodbye.
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So how much different is it than the Roland GR-20 that I was messing with at the Clinic a few weeks ago.

to quote the Promo piece that I brought home

When you buy a GR-20, you also get a GK-3 Divided Pickup and GK cable in the box. In other words, everything you need to start playing synth sounds is included! The GK-3 is 30 percent thinner than its predecessor, and it now uses a 1/4-inch jack for normal guitar input. The pickup includes an adjustable curve design to keep an even distance between the strings for better response (the pickup cable length is also adjustable). Owners of Les Paul-type guitars can install the GK-3 safely without drilling using a special attachment plate included in the box.

On hte other hand, the Les Paul Jr Plexi Amp sounds cool :thu:
Lynn G
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Originally posted by guitar geezer:

So how much different is it than the Roland GR-20 that I was messing with at the Clinic a few weeks ago.

to quote the Promo piece that I brought home

When you buy a GR-20, you also get a GK-3 Divided Pickup and GK cable in the box. In other words, everything you need to start playing synth sounds is included! The GK-3 is 30 percent thinner than its predecessor, and it now uses a 1/4-inch jack for normal guitar input. The pickup includes an adjustable curve design to keep an even distance between the strings for better response (the pickup cable length is also adjustable). Owners of Les Paul-type guitars can install the GK-3 safely without drilling using a special attachment plate included in the box.

On hte other hand, the Les Paul Jr Plexi Amp sounds cool :thu:
The Gibson digital guitar isn't like the Roland GR-series products in any way.

 

The Gibson sends a digital audio stream (like the kind that could be recorded as a wav or aif) from each string. Each string can be digitally processed in all the fun or cheesy ways we process any digital signal - time, phase, distortion, etc., recorded, amplified, etc.

 

It seems to me that stuff like pitch, note on/off, velocity, etc., could easily be detected by an external processor and spit out as MIDI so this guitar could control a synth module, but this doesn't seem to be, for better or worse, what Gibson is aiming for.

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Originally posted by DARKLAVA:

Dang why are people so hard on Gibson?If you

don't like what they offer don't buy it.

 

http://www.lespaulforum.com/slub2/thumbnails/msg59_t.jpghttp://www.smileytown.com/content/emot/love0002.gif

You are way off base on this one. What product?

 

I have always been a great lover of Gibson. (My prefered guitar, and I got a bunch of them.) But this technology has been announced year after year after year, with NO PRODUCT AVAILABLE TO BUY! Am I being hard on Gibson by expecting to see an actual -product- follow the announcement? How about after about 5 -years- of the same kind of announcement??? Hello? is anybody paying attention?

 

No jumping on the guy who posts verbatum a Gibson press release?? Happens every year. Last year's announcement had a nice picture, though.

 

Bill

"I believe that entertainment can aspire to be art, and can become art, but if you set out to make art you're an idiot."

 

Steve Martin

 

Show business: we're all here because we're not all there.

 

 

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Originally posted by Doug Osborne:

The Gibson digital guitar isn't like the Roland GR-series products in any way.

That is true, but the intended function (separate audio stream for each string) exists in the Roland divided pickup.

 

The difference is that the A/D conversion exists in the guitar. It will need a breakout box to connect to regular amps, which sort of defeats the purpose. How many people are going to want to record a straight less paul without any processing, be it a tube amp or compressor or what not.

 

I like Line6's direction better. The new Variax can change tuning per string and do all kinds of other neat tricks with the upcoming workbench software.

 

Like a rical CEO said in a Wired article, "Looks like a solution looking for a problem"

"For instance" is not proof.

 

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Originally posted by bpark@prorec.com:

Originally posted by DARKLAVA:

Dang why are people so hard on Gibson?If you

don't like what they offer don't buy it.

 

http://www.lespaulforum.com/slub2/thumbnails/msg59_t.jpghttp://www.smileytown.com/content/emot/love0002.gif

You are way off base on this one. What product?

 

I have always been a great lover of Gibson. (My prefered guitar, and I got a bunch of them.) But this technology has been announced year after year after year, with NO PRODUCT AVAILABLE TO BUY! Am I being hard on Gibson by expecting to see an actual -product- follow the announcement? How about after about 5 -years- of the same kind of announcement??? Hello? is anybody paying attention?

 

No jumping on the guy who posts verbatum a Gibson press release?? Happens every year. Last year's announcement had a nice picture, though.

 

Bill

MYYYYYY BAD! http://www.smileytown.com/content/emot/shok0005.gifYou hang in there Bill,one day Gibson will

come through. http://www.smileytown.com/content/emot/hapy0006.gif

The story of life is quicker then the blink of an eye, the story of love is hello, goodbye.
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Originally posted by zeronyne:

The difference is that the A/D conversion exists in the guitar. It will need a breakout box to connect to regular amps, which sort of defeats the purpose. How many people are going to want to record a straight less paul without any processing, be it a tube amp or compressor or what not.

 

Like a rical CEO said in a Wired article, "Looks like a solution looking for a problem"

This gets pretty close in my estimation. If the developer/manufacturer can get the "public" to bite before the product is truly ready, not only will some of their development costs be defrayed, they will have a ready made market for any "add ons" later. Taylor Guitars' ES pickup system is a good example of that...thought by many to have been brought on the market too soon, ol' Uncle Bob now has tens of thousands of his guitars NEEDING their dedicated preamp....at more than $400 a pop.

 

The problem with doing business this way is if no one bites....which is apparently the case with this "virtual" Gibson product...I mean let's face it...NO ONE buys a Gibson guitar for current innovation....they buy it for the innovation of 50 years ago, and the "perceived quality" that is supposed to follow suit. The ONLY companies that can pull this kind of business tactic off are the "big boys" as they have the financial support to do so. Companies like Roland or Line 6 don't carry this kind of baggage and they are FORCED to innovate to survive...we expect it from them, while at the same time, don't want it from a "traditional" builder like Gibson because it just seems "out of character".

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Well said. Gibson is not a brand that is associated with technological innovation. Nor is it marketed as such. It's a "Nostalgia" or "Heritage" brand and that is totally counter to pushing tech stuff. No one wants a Harley crotch rocket and no one wants a digital Les Paul - at least not until after a digital interface is already popular and is considered necessary by a lot of players.

 

Gibson should have rolled the technology out through Steinberger or gone into a licence agreement with another manufacturer with a more "tech friendly" image.

"You never can vouch for your own consciousness." - Norman Mailer
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The MAGIC technology might see some useful applications in sound reinforcement or recording studio technology but a lot of it depends on whether Gibson can get other companies to license the design. Something to replace ADAT Lightpipe could be handy and 32 channels of 192kHz audio in two directions at once with additional control channels and power would be a real step up. and it uses cheap ehternet hardware and cabling.

 

Digital Les Pauls don't appeal to me either but I'm pretty traditional when it comes to my guitars and amps. I went back to analog FX and tube amps a long time ago and don't see any reason to change that part of my hardware. But I use a computer to record and edit music and Sofware Synths and samplers are my favorite toys. I also have a Roland GR-33 which has come in handy for a number of things.

Mac Bowne

G-Clef Acoustics Ltd.

Osaka, Japan

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