January 8, 2007

Oh, please, no...

by Chris Randall

Apparently, the Rhodes remake will actually be at NAMM this year, only like 5 years after that dude bought the name and started threatening to make one. There is actually a web site up and everything, and since it's on the interwebs, you know it's true.

I have to say that the technical data on the preview page isn't exactly inspiring. I can't for the life of me figure out why a simple mechanical instrument would need a USB port and an LCD screen, so it makes me think that they may have tried to improve on an already good thing. The words "state of the art" appear twice in three bullet points, and since the original Rhodes was created in 1946, I'm wondering how much "state of the art" technology should really be applied.

However, I don't think it's a ROMpler. If it is, I swear to christ I'm gonna start fashioning a shiv.

Any other rumors we should all be aware of? I do know a certain effects maker is supposed to debut a new flagship, but other than that, I haven't heard about anything that would really qualify as "interesting."



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Jan.09.2007 @ 6:15 PM
"loaded with techno never gets old."

You might even say that the catchphrase "loaded with techno" is itself loaded with techno. Isn't there a name for that?


Jan.09.2007 @ 6:39 PM
"Isn't there a name for that?"



Jan.10.2007 @ 3:17 PM

Jan.12.2007 @ 4:17 PM
There's a thread on gearslutz discussing the new rhodes models link [www.gearslutz.co...]">link [www.gearslutz.co...]

The actual designer gives more of a heads up as to what all the extras (pitchbend LCD) are for. Here's the pertinent remarks:

"Hold yer horses, boys!


If that's all you want, order a stripped down stage model and go away. If you want active preamp/EQ/vibrato, get the active version. If you want the bottom speaker, just pop it underneath, it's ready to interface. If you want MIDI, get it. It will have a display for midi mapping, nothing related to the piano's sound.

Hammers and tines are based on the MKV technology. It will weigh around 85 lbs for a 73. Tines are made from the same alloys and are from the same source. The action is fast without the key bounce common in older designs. These things PLAY.

They will have the usual "accessory" jacks to allow interfacing to your beloved MXR Phase 90 while offering a passive output for external processing or a DI right off the pickups. The vibrato rate is very wide, from very slow to chattering fast, great for effects. It's a very smooth optically based triangle waveform pan circuit.

The preamps are using new silicon/germainium technology and noise is very low. There is a 3 band EQ with a mid sweep range of 100 to 8k hz, + - 15 db. Residual buzz from the pickups is also reduced from better shielding. The pickup coils will be made by Turbo-Jet, just like before. They will be better matched than any other previous Rhodes offering improved signal to noise ratios.

The speaker bottom is very powerful but also very light. It has wheels and a great stand/support system. The pedals are improved for faster set up without rubbing. I can get Hendrix like feedback from this thing, it's so powerful.

The new 61 key passive is very affordable. What ever the price is set at, it will be reasonable for the quality and features offered. One can conclude this will be a great product and will find favor with many musicians who don't want the aggravation of maintaining a 30+ year old piano or those who want additional performance and sound quality. We all realize some vintage old "rhodents" will hate anything new, but they already have their old dinosaurs so they are not the market focus.

Booth 5811, see you there....

Jim Williams
Rhodes designer."


Jan.17.2007 @ 10:33 AM
"The new 61 key passive is very affordable."

I'm really hoping his idea of affordable is close to my idea of affordable.


Jan.21.2007 @ 12:22 AM
I am just returning from the 2007 NAMM event, and have to offer some input to all of those that hold strong opinion for something THEY HAVENT EVEN SEEN! The Rhodes IS all that it is built up to be, Stevie Wonder is a huge advocate for it's revival, and the rest of NAMM is clearly on the side of supportive, otherwise I would not have had to wait in line for 25 minutes to try this fine instrument.

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