January 18, 2008

NAMM-tastic News...

by Chris Randall

Obviously, I'm not at NAMM (what were the odds?) so I'm in the same boat most of you are, sitting back and reading the seemingly unending stream of press releases like all the other plebs. Quite frankly, this is for the better, as my temperament would probably get me in trouble were I actually to attend. So I have to live vicariously through Dave Gamble, basically.

That aside, here's the obligatory post of Things I Find Interesting So Far in all the press releases. With one exception, I haven't actually beheld any of these products in real life, so my bullshit detector is working at a low threshold. We'll see how that works out. Anyways, I'll say ahead of time that I don't find the LinnDrum II, the MiniMoog OS, or the Virus Snow interesting, really. I have great respect for two out of the three companies, but nothing new here, really. Just old stuff re-packaged for a different price point.

Moog MP-201 Multi-Pedal: At first pale, you're like, "oh, an expression pedal. Whatever." Or at least I was. Then I started to think about it, and realized how slick it was. This is the Controller Pedal Of The Gods, able to do most anything. Assuming (and this is a bit of an assumption on my part) that the buttons and pedal can be assigned to any ol' MIDI CC, this will fit in to my foot-pedaling world so perfectly I can't really believe it. I'll certainly be getting one as soon as they're available.

Sonalksis Mastering Suite: These will be fairly slick. They haven't put anything up on their website yet, but it was "announced" at NAMM. Four plugins, and to my ears much better at software limiting than other stuff I've heard. Dave did a hell of a job with these. And no motherfucking iLok bullshit.

Line 6 ToneCore DSP Development Kit: (Note that the link goes to Digital Pro Sound's iteration of the press release. That site is the worst ad farm on the planet. They make Sonic State look like, well, me, in comparison.) I know this was announced last year, but it looks like it is finally gonna be released in a couple months. This is a little module that fits in Line 6's ToneCore dock that has a chunk of blank DSP and some RAM and some knobs, so you can program your own guitar effects. I think that, for guitarists, it is a pointless product, but for those of you that get your giggles turning Furbies in to Overlords Of Sonic Death, this is about the best thing since diagonal cutters. Time will tell, but I think we'll see some interesting things come from this.

I've been keeping my eyes open, but nothing else has really caught my fancy. New 3.5 OS for Eclipse makes me happy, but I can't remember my damn username and password for the Eventide site. (And they FINALLY discovered HTML 1.1, it seems.) Anything I missed here that is on the down-low cool?



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Jan.18.2008 @ 1:34 PM
Yaa, thats the first thing I thought when I saw the pedal. Combined with one of their little(expensive) expanders you could part the sea.

Amusingly, I also found the Sonalksis offering to be one of the only new and undoubtedly useful products.

One has to wonder how certain companies have strayed so far.
Roland: I'm looking at you.
I mean they've got old shitboxes that are literally falling apart selling for over a grand on ebay for several years now.
What do they bring to the party? A fucking accordion~link [namm.harmony-ceal.co...]">link [namm.harmony-ceal.co...]
thats fucking awesome-dont get it twisted, but where's the dildo with D-beams?
C'mon Tanaka, I know you've got it in you:)


Jan.18.2008 @ 1:37 PM
I was chuffed to see that Eventide have finally automated their file delivery. No more emailing for a chumpy URI with no htaccess or anything like that {so why hide it at all?}, finally.

I think the Thermionic Culture Rooster is on display; while that's purportedly shipping next month and everyone else was aware of it, was news to me, and mrkgnao!

DP 6 supports zooming in the tracks overview, presumably in response to years and years of people bitching about having to use a different, better window for track details. Sell-outs!


Jan.18.2008 @ 1:40 PM
Chris Randall
Since I already have one of the little (expensive) expanders, the pedal makes me happy as hell. I've previously had to give up both attenuators and the LFO for my pedal needs, and those cheap-ass expression pedals they sell, well, forget it. Plus nothing but Gorilla Glue will hold them in place on the fucking floor. They're modeled from banana peels.



Jan.18.2008 @ 1:44 PM
I was thinking about what i wanted the lin6 pedal to be, and i basically decided I just wanted Clavia to make a open micromod2 with footswitches.

Jan.18.2008 @ 1:49 PM
Didja see this?
"the new through-zero-flanger"

link [namm.harmony-ceal.co...]">link [namm.harmony-ceal.co...]



Jan.18.2008 @ 2:11 PM
D' MacKinnon
Hey, what do you guys think of the Open Labs Neko?
I thought it was a good idea at first, being able to load up vst instruments and effects into a keyboard that you can haul to shows. I've been hearing feedback from people that you can just get a laptop and a midi controller for cheaper.

Gimmicky and overpriced or actually worth the $?


Jan.18.2008 @ 2:21 PM
Chris Randall
Gimmicky and overpriced. The Neko Labs Open Controller is a MIDI controller with some knobs, a quasi-optimized PC, and a Presonus Firebox all in one handy case.



Jan.18.2008 @ 2:36 PM
When you see it up close it will remove all doubt as to it's pedigree. The shoddiest construction I've seen.
You'd be better off with a
link [www.excelsior-usa.co...]">link [www.excelsior-usa.co...]

Jan.18.2008 @ 2:37 PM
Terrific pinata though
link [www.youtube.com]">link [www.youtube.com]

Jan.18.2008 @ 2:41 PM
I haven't found much that exciting. The only big surprise to me is that it would seem Korg didn't announce anything new.

It's a bit worrisome that the biggest stories are repackaged versions of gear from the 80s and corporate consolidation (Roland/Cakewalk, Gibson/TC).

Biggest headshaker for me was the Alesis MPC, no wait, the Akai XR20 (wink wink). I can just hear the product development meeting that took place to produce that gem.


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