Looking for a MIDI guitar pickup ...

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Fender2112, Jan 24, 2004.

  1. Fender2112 macrumors 6502a

    Fender2112

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2002
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #1
    My objective is to get the sound from my guitar into GarageBand via MIDI so I can use my guitar to control the software intruments.

    What I found so far is a set up from Roland that consists of GK-2A pickup and a MIDI interface. The catch is that the pickup has a Roland proprietray GK conector that only works with Roland GK interfaces. The G1-20 being the least expensive. That's a minumum of $600 for the two items. Yamaha offers a similar set up in the same price range.

    My question: Is there a pickup that has a standard MIDI connector that I can use with the Edirol UA-20's MIDI-in port to send a MIDI signal to GarageBand allowing me to control the software instruments with my guitar?

    Thanks
     
  2. kanker macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2003
    Location:
    Indy
    #2
    I don't know if there is a readily available MIDI pick up, but the Roland has been out for years, and there may be some first generation GR-1's ( I believe that's the model #) out there used for pretty cheap.
     
  3. cubist macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2002
    Location:
    Muncie, Indiana
    #3
    Converting guitar sounds into MIDI data codes sounds like a very difficult thing to do. Are you sure that's what Roland's products do? I would think sampled audio would be a more likely outcome.
     
  4. Fender2112 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Fender2112

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2002
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #4
    That's what the GK-2 pickup is designed for. It transfers the string vibration to a Roland MIDI "box". The "box" handles all of the encoding and such.

    I just read where Roland announced a new product. The GR-20 which includes a new GK-3 pickup. I listend to some sample clips from their web site. The GR-20 sounds sweet. I may hold out a few weeks and see what this thing can do.

    In answer to my original post. I would not put much faith in a device that relies on software encoding. I stumbled onto a product (GVox I think it was) that connects directly to the computer (Windows only). I got the impression it used software to covert the signal to MIDI. It was inexpensive (about $130) and I'm a firm believer int you get what you pay for.

    Here's a site that gives a good summary of what's involved with a MIDI guitar set up.
     
  5. evil_santa macrumors 6502a

    evil_santa

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2003
    Location:
    London, England
    #5
    if i understad right you want a stick on midi converter that has midi out. I think the roland & yamaha pickups need a base unit to get all the electronics in it, you would need quite a big pick up to house all the controls / power / electronics. Unless it is installed into the guitar. In the 80s Casio made a strat type guitar with all the electronics built in, I think it had synth sounds & midi out without a base unit.
    I have a Roland pickup on my Strat, with a GR 50 rack mount unit. The multi pin conector take all the pick up info, power, controls & the Guitar Jack, from the pick up you can have a clean guitar out / guitar synth mix / synth & midi from the rack mount.

    or you could try a pitch to midi converter.

    here are some midi guitars
    http://electricguitar.50megs.com/midi.htm
     
  6. cpjakes macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2003
    Location:
    Buffalo, NY
    #6
    This is a quite compicated Digital Signal Processing application, converting sound into MIDI. It works pretty well for one note at a time, like a flute, but not so much on guitar with the chords. Most things would have to be played slowly, just to make all the data come through.

    Casio made a MIDI guitar in the late 80s - 90s that does just that. I would recommend checking one out on eBay.

    As I said, it's complex, but possible and you'll definitely get what you pay for.

    cpjakes
     
  7. kanker macrumors 6502

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    Nov 13, 2003
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    Indy
    #7
    I have to completely disagree- I know a few guys using the GK pickups with various Roland guitar interfaces (GR-1, VG-88) and those things track EXTREMELY well once you set them up. A couple of them are very serious jazz players who play really complex chord voicings rapidly with absolutely no problem at all, and the thing can track any single line stuff they play regardless of speed too.
     
  8. Engagebot macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2003
    Location:
    LSU - Baton Rouge
    #8
    well all i can say is that i've tried the fender made 'roland-ready' strat, and it didnt track as well as i would have liked.
     
  9. Fender2112 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Fender2112

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2002
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #9
    I was thinking about getting one of these. Is this your experience (maybe a defective pickup)? Or is it the expected behavior of the "Roland Ready" Strat?

    FYI: Here's a LINK to Roland's new GR-20. Click the interactive demo and listen to some of the sound clips. Depending on how well this thing works, I may fall in love with my guitar again. :)
     
  10. cpjakes macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2003
    Location:
    Buffalo, NY
    #10
    I was more referring to a cheaper option, where not every string has its own pickup/converter. Some try to do all strings at once, which is almost impossible to do in real time, especially on the lower end boxes I've seen. Of course, anything in the higher end should work well. I thought he was looking for a quick (and cheap) fix...

    cpjakes
     
  11. kanker macrumors 6502

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    Nov 13, 2003
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    Indy
    #11
    Ahhhh.... I misunderstood your point. Definitely have to agree that a cheapy new unit won't do the job.
     
  12. gmed macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 11, 2003
    #12
    http://www.samedaymusic.com/product--ROLGI20

    This is what you need. The pickup alone wont do it. I wanted something like what you said, but i did some research, and this is what processes the signals to MIDI. Of course you need the pickup too.
     
  13. Engagebot macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2003
    Location:
    LSU - Baton Rouge
    #13
    I played with one in a studio i recorded in, and i was trying to have it write out music notation like a midi keyboard can.

    the performance wasn't great enough to put the effort into playing it then editing the stuff. alot of chords, pick or hand noise, or bends really wrecked havoc on it. if you're playing static notes on the guitar, its fine, but guitar is just doesnt inherintly lend itself to midi.
     
  14. patenko macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2008
    #14
    Guitar Synth recap ?

    Hi Gang,
    I too am toying with the idea of using my guitar to somehow interface with the Garageband midi voices . . .

    From all the research am doing, looks like a person needs 2 things:
    the GK3 pickup AND the MIDI unit, then that plugs into the computer and you can access the Garageband MIDI files, does this sound right?

    Looks like everything (pickup and controller) costs about $550?

    rock on!
     

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