Ableton Amp: Amplifier Add-on for Live Goes Minimal, Dirty, Integrated

Dirty and minimal – that’s how I’d describe first impressions of Amp, the just-announced Ableton amp modeling add-on for Live, available a la carte or free with Live Suite. It appears at first glance to be just what you’d expect: it’s a radically simplified user interface for modeling amplifiers (“Amp”) and cabinets (“Cabinet”). (Hey, shouldn’t that have been Amp and Cab, or does that make people think of wine and taxis?) Or, as Ableton’s press release puts it, the aim is to “get good dirt, fast.” What you get in the add-on: Live-styled, minimal UIs, emphasizing essential parameters Inserts you …

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iOS Arrivals: A Serious Mobile Studio for Producers, AmpliTube for Guitarists

With previews and teasers, it’s sometimes easy to miss when useful new tools actually become available to you. Two tools this week became available, each potentially high on the utility end of the spectrum. There’s no shortage of variety in iOS music creation apps, but when people really want to get down to music making, many of them want to focus on one tool, not twenty. (That’s not universal – ask Richard Devine‘s screaming VST plug-in folder – but you ought to at least be able to make such a choice.) It’s therefore little surprise that there’s been a lot …

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Virtual Reality: Guitar Notation, Amps, and Effects Appear on Apple Mobiles

Competing solutions from IK Multimedia and Peavey extend the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad with custom hardware for connecting a guitar. Here, the AmpKit LiNK, by Peavey and Agile Partners. All images courtesy the vendors. Ah, amplifiers and stompboxes. We hardly knew ye. Once exclusively the stuff of tubes, wires, cabinets, aluminum, and electronics, guitar amps and pedals have for years been available in growingly-sophisticated software models. Once the electronics of sound become software, there’s nothing stopping them from running on any computer – which now includes computers disguised as mobile phones, like the iPhone. (In fact, I expect that …

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Goodies for Guitars: IK’s Wah Pedal That’s Also an Interface, Official Fender Software

Today is set to be an orgy of computer music-y, Abletronic, drum machine-loaded, Max-patching news, so let’s throw one out to the guitarists. IK Multimedia has two new announcements today that are actually quite cool. The StealthPedal is a Wah pedal that’s actually an audio interface, sort of like a James Bond pen that’s also a gun. And IK also landed the only official Fender-endorsed software amp emulation. Here’s a quick look at the specs. By the way, I’ve consulted everyone I know (especially as I’m not a guitarist), and basically what we’ve come up with is that a whole …

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Guitar Riggers: A Girl Plays Violin on Pogo Stick, A Man Dressed as Preset Cliches

Native Instruments’ Guitar Rig Hero video contest winners were unveiled today. At the top of the charts, players not surprisingly demonstrated fine craft, sharp execution, great playing, and so on. But let’s skip straight to the oddities in the bunch. Like the girl with the violin on a pogo stick. And there is an appearance by the NS/Stick, which earns stringed-geek cred the more-predictable entries lack. Now, normally I’m not so interested in the online contests various developers produce. But these entries stand out enough to have a good look here. Word of warning: you may be less inclined to …

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Get AmpliTube, Ampeg Amp Software Free if You’re A Pro Tools User

The folks at IK Multimedia are sending free software to users of Pro Tools — anyone with a copy of Pro Tools LE or HD. (Apparently no love for Pro Tools M-Powered owners.) You get AmpliTube 2 DUO; it’s not the full AmpliTube 2, but it’s no slouch, with tuner, stomp, amp, cabinet+microphone, two models for everything, and 30 presets. There’s also the Ampeg SVX UNO bass camp, again with 4 modules, though 1 model for each, plus 15 presets. Standalone + plug-in, with Mac Intel and Windows Vista compatibility included. Promotion details over at IK Multimedia’s site.

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AdrenaLinn III: Amp Modeling, Beat-Synced Effects in a Box, For Guitars or Anything Else

Even as software continues to flourish, there’s still a great argument for a hardware box that does what you need — especially when that box has extensive feature sets, MIDI support, comes from Roger Linn, and costs US$375. Roger himself writes to let us know about the release of the AdrenaLinn III: AndrenaLinn III Product Page Like the models that came before it, the AdrenaLinn III is a guitar amp modeler with modulation and effects. The effects section is what really sets it apart: delays, filter sequences, and modulation are all synced to either the built-in drum machine or external …

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Reimagined DIY Thumb Pianos, Amplified, Electrified, and with Faux Fur

Sometimes an instrument you know can become something else altogether. Bob Collier has been constructing his own thumb pianos, adding amplification, effects, self-sampling features, and novel cases involving recycled camera bodies and faux fur. As Bob says, “Sometimes the crudest and roughest looking kalimbas can sound surprisingly good especially with the right context of fx and amplification.” I find kalimbas beautiful and delicate to begin with. Throw in some faux fur and Korg KAOSS Pad effects, and they take on a whole new life: Other designs add all-new functionality, like the Sampimer, a “self-sampling” thumb piano with integrated 20-second voice …

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