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  • #16
    Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's

    Originally posted by cato View Post
    take a look at dimeola's setup. since this is foreign to me, can someone tell me the how and why of this setup? he controls his gr30 with the vg8? what's the vg8 for? why not connect the godin to the gr30 directly? why do you need a vg88 if you have all the sounds available by midi? it just adds amp/guitar sound emulation?
    so many questions.


    The descriptions in the image are self-explanatory:

    The VG-88 models guitars and amps. That means his Godin nylon-string guitar can sound like a Les Paul, a Tele, a Strat, a White Falcon, or a Gibson 12-string Hummingbird, through a Dumble, or a JCM800, or a Plexi, or a Champ, or a TripleRec, without having any of those actually on-hand or on-stage.

    While seemingly redundant, the VG8 does pretty much the same things the VG88 can do, although the 88 has a built-in expression pedal, which you would want for controlling volume, wah sweep, delay tempo, tremolo depth (Link Wray's "Rumble"), or any other parameter (gain, or even pickup switching ala Hendrix with the 5-way).

    The VG-8 has more pedals than (and can therefore control more functions of) the GR30, but the GR30 does all the non-guitar sounds like woodwinds and brass and such.

    As well, you can set the VG88 for one group of simulated guitar, pickup, and amp tones while the VG8 is set for a different-yet-complimentary group, i.e. Les Paul with PAFs into a Plexi on one and a Strat with vintage singles into a Tube Driver into a Fender Twin.


    Another benefit of MIDI is having multiple sound modules dedicated to only one or a few instruments each. Since each unit has a limited amount of RAM (and usually not much as compared to a PC - I'd be surprised if anyone makes one with 4GB), a full orchestra with brass, wood, and strings of all varieties will not sound as good in a single unit as if you spread that out over 3 or 4 different modules dedicated to only a handful of instruments.
    For example, you have 4 sound modules;
    #1 has 2 alto saxes harmonized in 3rds, 3 tenor saxes harmonized in 5ths, and 2 baritone saxes an octave apart
    #2 has 3 trumpets, 2 are doubled and one an octave below
    #3 has 5 violins, 2 doubled and 3 harmonized across one octave, and 4 cellos
    #4 has nothing but a Grand Piano and is set up for the highest level of articulation so you get all the notes, from the soft to the slammed

    That's a 21-piece orchestra that, depending on the sound quality of the samples contained within the unit, can be controlled by one person, or a laptop running a MIDI composition, and would sound awesome.
    And it all fits in a 4-space rack you can put in the trunk of a Kia Sorento.

    Further, the layering of similar instruments still consumes the available memory of the unit, but contributes to a much fuller sound than a single trumpet blaring away.
    Last edited by DrNewcenstein; 03-29-2017, 09:49 PM.
    Originally posted by Brown Note
    I'm soooooo jealous about the WR-1. It's the perfect guitar; fantastic to play, balances well even when seated and *great* reach for the upper frets. The sound is bright tight and very articulate. In summary it could only be more awesome if it had b00bs and was on fire!
    My Blog

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    • #17
      Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's

      excellent article securb. very informative. i'm finding much of my confusion was coming from reading articles that seem to be using midi and guitar synthesizer interchangeably when clearly they're not the same thing. the people writing the information know the difference and are not intending the confusion but that's how my novice brain got tripped up. further, I was reading about Al DiMeola's set up just to get an idea about the subject since I know he uses midi, and I saw he uses what is referred to as a godin "midi equipped" guitar with the Roland guitar synthesizer; but then I look up the two godin midi guitars and I find out they have divided pups (in add to HBs) with a 13 pin (not midi) connector made to connect to a roland guitar synth. that just muddied things up.

      i take it some roland synths like the 55 can output true midi signals functioning as a midi converter; but if divided pups like gk3's don't output midi signals, and rather need a converter, what signal is a gk3 outputting? just curious if there is an industry term for the gk3 signal before it's converted to midi. not critical. just curious.

      also, roland says the gk3 signals are converted to midi by the converter attached behind the bridge, but if the signals are outputted via the 13pin connector to the 55, and 13 pin is not 'true midi', than what is the difference. midi signals are midi regardless of the connector facilitating the transmission, no? if the 55 accepts and transmits midi via its 13pin input and output, isn't it a true midi converter as well as a synth.

      not overthinking; just breaking down the info i'm reading. fascinating learning process.

      Comment


      • #18
        Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's

        A hexaphonic pickup is actually 6 separate pickups in one; each string has its own pickup. I would imagine that's part of the reason why it needs so many pins going out from it to the synth module ... as for HOW it does the conversion, I couldn't find anything online but my guess it that is uses some type of technology which is older than MIDI but not synthesis: CV, or Control Voltage. There are different standards for CV depending on the synthesis used, but they all share one common trait: they take voltage generated from oscillations in the audio range and convert it into pitch and gate information. The hexaphonic pickup sends CV from each pickup which is then converted to polyphony for the synth engine to process.
        Why don't you take your little Cobra Kais and get outta here?!
        My collaborative PROGRESSIVE ROCK PROJECT, As Follows.

        Comment


        • #19
          Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's

          thanks TO. very interesting.

          Comment


          • #20
            Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's

            Originally posted by DrNewcenstein View Post
            The descriptions in the image are self-explanatory:

            The VG-88 models guitars and amps. That means his Godin nylon-string guitar can sound like a Les Paul, a Tele, a Strat, a White Falcon, or a Gibson 12-string Hummingbird, through a Dumble, or a JCM800, or a Plexi, or a Champ, or a TripleRec, without having any of those actually on-hand or on-stage.

            While seemingly redundant, the VG8 does pretty much the same things the VG88 can do, although the 88 has a built-in expression pedal, which you would want for controlling volume, wah sweep, delay tempo, tremolo depth (Link Wray's "Rumble"), or any other parameter (gain, or even pickup switching ala Hendrix with the 5-way).

            The VG-8 has more pedals than (and can therefore control more functions of) the GR30, but the GR30 does all the non-guitar sounds like woodwinds and brass and such.

            As well, you can set the VG88 for one group of simulated guitar, pickup, and amp tones while the VG8 is set for a different-yet-complimentary group, i.e. Les Paul with PAFs into a Plexi on one and a Strat with vintage singles into a Tube Driver into a Fender Twin.


            Another benefit of MIDI is having multiple sound modules dedicated to only one or a few instruments each. Since each unit has a limited amount of RAM (and usually not much as compared to a PC - I'd be surprised if anyone makes one with 4GB), a full orchestra with brass, wood, and strings of all varieties will not sound as good in a single unit as if you spread that out over 3 or 4 different modules dedicated to only a handful of instruments.
            For example, you have 4 sound modules;
            #1 has 2 alto saxes harmonized in 3rds, 3 tenor saxes harmonized in 5ths, and 2 baritone saxes an octave apart
            #2 has 3 trumpets, 2 are doubled and one an octave below
            #3 has 5 violins, 2 doubled and 3 harmonized across one octave, and 4 cellos
            #4 has nothing but a Grand Piano and is set up for the highest level of articulation so you get all the notes, from the soft to the slammed

            That's a 21-piece orchestra that, depending on the sound quality of the samples contained within the unit, can be controlled by one person, or a laptop running a MIDI composition, and would sound awesome.
            And it all fits in a 4-space rack you can put in the trunk of a Kia Sorento.

            Further, the layering of similar instruments still consumes the available memory of the unit, but contributes to a much fuller sound than a single trumpet blaring away.
            wow newcenstien. that's uber enlightening! self explanatory is in the eye of the midi expert beholder! I'm too green in my understanding of midi capabilities to have thought about using different controllers to control different functions of a synth. your illustration of different scenarios markedly enhanced my understanding of the subject.
            thanks!

            Comment


            • #21
              Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's

              I love my LGXSA Godin w/hex out .

              I love my Roland GR33 too .

              I'm in heaven when I hook them to my T.C.Helicon Vocal Live 3 X .

              It's a small footprint on stage , clean set up & streamline looking .

              Not much at all to haul besides my 3 mics , harps , amp/P.A. & drum throne to sit on .

              I have it set up for live off grid busking too besides doing casuals , coffee houses and
              small venues.

              Cant hardly wait to do a big venue and walk in with just my LGXSA Godin , harps , harp mic ,
              condenser mic hooked into the T.C.Helicon & Roland GR33 to the T.C.Helicon VL3X and go direct
              into the house system controlling everything myself .

              EZ :

              HR
              It started for me with Twinkle Twinkle Little Star in 54 on a Blues Harp and progressed , then life .....some death ....Evolving as I went like a small rock in a stream rounding out as I went with the flow as I go through the white waters and waterfalls of life . Life has always been interesting to me

              Comment


              • #22
                Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's

                Originally posted by Hurricane View Post
                I love my LGXSA Godin w/hex out .

                I love my Roland GR33 too .

                I'm in heaven when I hook them to my T.C.Helicon Vocal Live 3 X .

                It's a small footprint on stage , clean set up & streamline looking .

                Not much at all to haul besides my 3 mics , harps , amp/P.A. & drum throne to sit on .

                I have it set up for live off grid busking too besides doing casuals , coffee houses and
                small venues.

                Cant hardly wait to do a big venue and walk in with just my LGXSA Godin , harps , harp mic ,
                condenser mic hooked into the T.C.Helicon & Roland GR33 to the T.C.Helicon VL3X and go direct
                into the house system controlling everything myself .

                EZ :

                HR
                just looked up the helicon and godin. sweet setup! that godin says it has a 13 pin, which i understand.
                but what's the 'acoustic transducer' for if it's midi and can trigger any array of acoustic sounds?
                also, what is the '3 way magnetic output'?
                also, i hear so much about 13pin roland vs. 'true midi' output. why does a 'midi' guitar not have 'true midi' output instead of adhering to the roland standard?
                thanks!

                Comment


                • #23
                  Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's



                  Originally posted by cato View Post
                  just looked up the helicon and godin. sweet setup! that godin says it has a 13 pin, which i understand.
                  but what's the 'acoustic transducer' for if it's midi and can trigger any array of acoustic sounds?
                  also, what is the '3 way magnetic output'?
                  also, i hear so much about 13pin roland vs. 'true midi' output. why does a 'midi' guitar not have 'true midi' output instead of adhering to the roland standard?
                  thanks!
                  cato on the compliment on the set up . Yep I am loving this so far .

                  The issues are/is latency and accuracy , with one being faster and claiming being more accurate than the another , but at this point IMHO it's like splitting hairs .
                  We're talking milliseconds of time . The issue IMHO whether you choose one or the other is not critical , what is critical is how accurate your playing skills are :

                  If technically your are not very accurate a guitarist it translates in false triggered notes and digital glitches .
                  • Classical
                  • Bluegrass
                  • CW
                  • Flamenco
                  • Jazz/Fusion


                  Finger style players seem to excel while thrash metal players who rely on heavy distortion and FX might not have as good an experience if
                  you dig where I'm coming from .

                  The Axion group touted their system was fast - The Roland GR 20/30/33 group could not notice the difference and these Roland users include
                  some heavy weight players .

                  Axion is no longer around from what I have or have not seen of their line up of units evolving like Roland and Yamaha , I could be wrong .

                  The Hexaphonic has to process the CV signal of each string and the frequency individually of the note then interpret this into numerical values
                  that midi uses to trigger the assigned note and voice . This process is not in the chain of event's on a keyboard .

                  Bottom line is a hexaphonic chain like my Godin LGXSA to the Roland GR33 gets converted to midi signal and then out it's " Right & Left Line Outs "
                  is analog audio and with a midi keyboard plugged into the GR33 midi in and out and older units , can trigger midi voices and notes FX CC - Program/Preset Changes
                  and all that crazy cool digital FX stuff in the GR series or any other midi system , Korg - Yamaha , you name it - " Midi is Midi " - that's why it's so powerful because it's
                  been around since the 70's as a standard that has not changed it's OS since it came out .

                  The newest GR55 unit is really good and then again lacks some of the things most GR midi guitarists want that their units have and will miss
                  if they change units with a latest issue model upgrade .

                  On the plus it's got " Open Tuning(s) " that's unreal - guitar models and pick up options - cool , and electric guitar FX ,
                  and a looper , these are some of the things the older GR unit series lacked .

                  On the negative it's missing a five pin midi in and out !

                  So - it's all good and then it's never perfect .

                  Fishman's Triple Play is not bad also the Livid and ACPAD systems but they require computer/laptop/ipad/iphone , and are
                  all really cool but again , not as robust as a GR series .

                  With the Vocal Live 3 X I cover the things I need and that's cool for me .

                  EZ :

                  HR
                  It started for me with Twinkle Twinkle Little Star in 54 on a Blues Harp and progressed , then life .....some death ....Evolving as I went like a small rock in a stream rounding out as I went with the flow as I go through the white waters and waterfalls of life . Life has always been interesting to me

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's

                    Originally posted by Hurricane View Post




                    cato on the compliment on the set up . Yep I am loving this so far .

                    The issues are/is latency and accuracy , with one being faster and claiming being more accurate than the another , but at this point IMHO it's like splitting hairs .
                    We're talking milliseconds of time . The issue IMHO whether you choose one or the other is not critical , what is critical is how accurate your playing skills are :

                    If technically your are not very accurate a guitarist it translates in false triggered notes and digital glitches .
                    • Classical
                    • Bluegrass
                    • CW
                    • Flamenco
                    • Jazz/Fusion


                    Finger style players seem to excel while thrash metal players who rely on heavy distortion and FX might not have as good an experience if
                    you dig where I'm coming from .

                    The Axion group touted their system was fast - The Roland GR 20/30/33 group could not notice the difference and these Roland users include
                    some heavy weight players .

                    Axion is no longer around from what I have or have not seen of their line up of units evolving like Roland and Yamaha , I could be wrong .

                    The Hexaphonic has to process the CV signal of each string and the frequency individually of the note then interpret this into numerical values
                    that midi uses to trigger the assigned note and voice . This process is not in the chain of event's on a keyboard .

                    Bottom line is a hexaphonic chain like my Godin LGXSA to the Roland GR33 gets converted to midi signal and then out it's " Right & Left Line Outs "
                    is analog audio and with a midi keyboard plugged into the GR33 midi in and out and older units , can trigger midi voices and notes FX CC - Program/Preset Changes
                    and all that crazy cool digital FX stuff in the GR series or any other midi system , Korg - Yamaha , you name it - " Midi is Midi " - that's why it's so powerful because it's
                    been around since the 70's as a standard that has not changed it's OS since it came out .

                    The newest GR55 unit is really good and then again lacks some of the things most GR midi guitarists want that their units have and will miss
                    if they change units with a latest issue model upgrade .

                    On the plus it's got " Open Tuning(s) " that's unreal - guitar models and pick up options - cool , and electric guitar FX ,
                    and a looper , these are some of the things the older GR unit series lacked .

                    On the negative it's missing a five pin midi in and out !

                    So - it's all good and then it's never perfect .

                    Fishman's Triple Play is not bad also the Livid and ACPAD systems but they require computer/laptop/ipad/iphone , and are
                    all really cool but again , not as robust as a GR series .

                    With the Vocal Live 3 X I cover the things I need and that's cool for me .

                    EZ :

                    HR
                    awesome info man. thanks. i enjoy playing very technical/clean/acoustic, or low gain/minimum fx strat type stuff, with the exception of a bit more preamp OD/chorus/reverb for neoclassical stuff. so i was thinking hexaphonic pups/midi might accommodate my playing with some adaptation on my part. i'm almost reluctantly exploring this idea just cause i've always been a mild purist when it comes to fx, and so midi/synth is way outa my comfort zone.

                    so your godin has a "three-way magnetic output" it says. what's that?

                    and an 'acoustic transducer'?
                    why would a midi guitar need that when it can trigger midi acoustic sounds?

                    and weird a midi guitar would output 13 pin roland standard rather than 5 pin midi. no?

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's

                      Acoustic transducer = the actual sound of the acoustic guitar. Godin guitars excel at their transducer technology.

                      Magnetic = regular old pickups one would assume.
                      Why don't you take your little Cobra Kais and get outta here?!
                      My collaborative PROGRESSIVE ROCK PROJECT, As Follows.

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's

                        ah. got it.

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's

                          Originally posted by cato View Post

                          and weird a midi guitar would output 13 pin roland standard rather than 5 pin midi. no?
                          There used to be a few 5-pin midi guitars out there, but it does cause a few problems when plugging it directly into a synth (like not being able to plug a hold pedal directly in. The company responsible for that technology went out of business. We now have either 13 pin out, or the Triple Play system which uses Bluetooth to send it to a PC or Mac.
                          Dave, Ambassador/Writer/Artist for Seymour Duncan

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            Re: MIDI & Guitar Synthesizer Q's

                            Originally posted by Mincer View Post
                            There used to be a few 5-pin midi guitars out there, but it does cause a few problems when plugging it directly into a synth (like not being able to plug a hold pedal directly in. The company responsible for that technology went out of business. We now have either 13 pin out, or the Triple Play system which uses Bluetooth to send it to a PC or Mac.
                            ah ok, thanks mincer. i was wondering about that. that explains it.

                            Comment

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