MacRumors Giveaway: Win a Jamstik+ Smart Guitar for iOS and Mac

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jun 12, 2015.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    For this week's giveaway, we've teamed up with Zivix to offer MacRumors readers a chance to win a Jamstik+ Smart Guitar, the company's latest and greatest product. The Jamstik+ is a MIDI guitar controller that feels like a real guitar and works with the iPad, iPhone, and Mac. It's 16-inches long and comes with real metal strings and frets to capture each musician's unique playing style.

    Compared to the original Jamstik, the new version connects to your iPad, iPhone or Mac using Bluetooth instead of WiFi, and it includes a new magnetic pickup to improve pick detection to better mimic an electric guitar.


    Jamstik+ is a great way for novices to learn how to play the guitar because it comes with a dedicated series of JamTutor instruction apps, and there's no experience necessary -- anyone can use the Jamstik+. It uses the Jamstik's finger-sensing technology to teach the basics of guitar playing. Jamstik+ can connect to a Mac, iPad, or iPhone wirelessly using Bluetooth, so there's no cable to deal with, and its size makes it more portable than a traditional guitar.

    Jamstik+ works with several exclusive apps, but it's also compatible with the hundreds of music apps in the App Store. Unlike a real guitar, Jamstik+ does not need to be tuned, and it has a rechargeable battery that lasts for a full playing session (eight hours). The Jamstik+ is currently available for pre-order for $299.

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    To enter to win the Jamstik+, use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter your email address. Your email address will not be given to any third party and is used solely for contact purposes. You can earn additional entries by subscribing to our weekly newsletter, subscribing to our YouTube channel, following us on Twitter, or visiting the MacRumors Facebook page. Due to the complexities of international laws regarding giveaways, only U.S. residents who are 18 years of age or older are eligible to enter.

    This contest will run from today (June 12) at 1:30 p.m. Pacific Time through 1:30 p.m. Pacific Time on June 19. The winner will be chosen randomly on June 19 and will be contacted by email. The winner has 48 hours to respond and provide a shipping address or a new winner will be chosen.

    Article Link: MacRumors Giveaway: Win a Jamstik+ Smart Guitar for iOS and Mac
     
  2. DocStone macrumors regular

    DocStone

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    #2
    I am all about this! I hope I win!!! Thanks MacR..

    P.S. - Cue the "What about us postings..."
     
  3. William Gates macrumors 6502

    William Gates

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    #3
    Doesn't include an iPad or Mac to use it with? o_O
     
  4. mgipe macrumors demi-god

    mgipe

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    CA
    #4
    I would think that someone whose name is Bill Gates would be able to afford to buy the iPad to go with the free guitar. ;)
     
  5. SgtPepper12 macrumors 6502a

    SgtPepper12

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    #5
    Don't want to be the party pooper, but that Jamstik is a useless piece of junk. First, to learn how to play the guitar you should use a guitar, because that's the instrument you will use to actually audibly play stuff. It's a significant part of making music that you actually get the satisfaction to hear what you are playing exactly how you are playing it. Secondly, memorizing where to put your fingers is probably the least of your problems when learning (difficult) new chords. That takes like two seconds. The difficult part is to get your fingers to do what you want them to do. It's not like that thing makes that easier in any way (if anything, harder, because you are ruining your posture and technique by substituting an actual guitar with that weird little thing). If the part that instruments make sounds when playing them scares you in any way, you probably shouldn't learn to play an instrument to begin with.
     
  6. William Gates macrumors 6502

    William Gates

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    #6
    Gave all my money to Africa, send iPads.
     
  7. 2010mini macrumors 68040

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    Jun 19, 2013
    #7
    Sounds like a scam
     
  8. John.B macrumors 601

    John.B

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    #8
    Get a cheap electric -- Epiphone LP Junior or Squier Strat or borrow one from a friend -- and download a copy of Rocksmith 2014 from Steam (OS X compatible) and within a few short weeks you'll be far ahead of where you'd ever be with this Jamstik gizmo.
     
  9. Traverse macrumors 604

    Traverse

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    #9
    Not interested myself, but what a neat concept. I hope whoever wins enjoys it.
     
  10. OtherJesus macrumors 6502

    OtherJesus

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    #10
    Don't want to be the second party pooper but I've tried once of those and it's one of the worst pieces of gear I've ever used in my entire life of playing music. It has no action and emits no acoustic sound whatsoever.

    It's cool that it's a free giveaway but I wouldn't give this to my worst enemy.
     
  11. mistertomlinson macrumors 6502

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    Dec 22, 2007
    #11
    Why wouldn't you just buy a real guitar? In before Chapter 11.
     
  12. MentalFloss, Jun 12, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2015

    MentalFloss macrumors 65816

    MentalFloss

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    #12
    Based on that "logic", you should also learn playing keyboard instruments with a piano and never an electronic keyboard, because with that, you have the same problem that the sound is generated based on a key press detcted by a sensor as opposed to direct mechnical and acoustic interaction. And learning with an electric guitar is also not good then, because you usually would play it through an amplifier instead of just listening to the sound directly from the strings. And I am sure that some classically trained guitarist will tell you that the small electric guitars ruin your posture and technique.

    But of course, whenever something like this is introduced, there are some conservative elitists who call it a "piece of junk" for some obscure pseudo-reason, when they actually want to say "Don't buy something that makes it easy to learn an instrument! You have to learn it the same way I did! The hard way! The way it was done a hundred years ago! I can't stand the thought of you having it easier than I did! LEARNING MUSIC IS NOT SUPPOSED TO BE FUN AND EASY!"

    Right?

    Right. Sure. Two seconds to memorize a chord. Perhaps for people who learn ancient Greek in an afternoon.
     
  13. SBlue1 macrumors 65816

    SBlue1

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    Oct 17, 2008
    #13
    Looks like you never touched a guitar. :) No hate, but your post is wrong on almost every word. :) I play piano and both acoustic and electric guitar.

    With a keyboard the note is the same playing on a plastic kids keyboard or a Steinway grad stage piano. An E is an E. With a real guitar pressing the string down a millimeter off will give you a totally different sometimes even buzzing or scratching sound. A string is not a key or a button. So there is no substitute in playing a real guitar string at the exactly right position.

    Wrong. I practice at home mostly with an electric guitar unplugged when the family is here because it has the same sound but it is not loud at all.

    Nope. Electric guitars have the same fret board size as acoustic guitars.

    Wrong. Learning Music is supposed to be as easy as possible. In fact, guitar is so easy, I learned it solely by online videos. :) Learning piano at the other hand took me years of private teacher lessons.

    Check my online teacher out, a really great guy, a professional teacher and musician who is teaching millions of online students in a really fun and easy way. Guitar is not elitist or hard or whatever you think it is. It is really easy as long as follow these three little secrets: 1. practice 2. practice and 3. practice.

    http://www.justinguitar.com/en/BC-000-BeginnersCourse.php

    It really is that easy. As a beginner you will start with two or maximum three chords: E, A and D. A small kid can memorize those in minutes.

    So this thing indeed is really an unnecessary waste of money. There is no need to make learning a guitar easier because it couldn't be any easier than it already is. :) There are no shortcuts to learning guitar. It is as easy as just a lot of practice. Nothing else. :)
     
  14. SgtPepper12 macrumors 6502a

    SgtPepper12

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    Germany
    #14
    Yes, if you want to play the piano, it's probably a good idea to learn it on an actual piano. But a keyboard is also a legitimate instrument on it's own, so you can't compare that to this "jamstik", which is not an actual instrument.
    Again, electric guitars are complete instruments on their own. If you want to play electric guitar, you can of course learn that on an electric guitar. Plus acoustic guitars and electric guitars behave very similarly and you can switch back and forth quite easily.

    In what ways should this thing make learning the guitar easier? It shows you where to put your fingers, big deal. I can write that on a piece of paper and have the exact same thing. And why would something that so heavily relies on muscle memory like playing an instrument be learned on anything else than the actual thing? It basically makes you learn everything twice.

    That is an E major chord: 022100. That's all the information there is in a chord. Once you put your fingers in these positions, it's even easier to memorize. It's really not that complicated as a concept, it just can be hard for beginners to develop the necessarily control over their fingers. But I don't see that the jamstik is helping with that in any way.
     
  15. DocStone macrumors regular

    DocStone

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    #15
    Sgt. Pep, relax man. I have been playing guitar for over 20 years and own 15 instruments from Fender and Gibson to Taylor and Collings. Each of us learn differently. To memorize a chord for you might be easy but for someone else it might be more difficult. As a guitar instructor over the years I have seen people pick up guitar quickly and others it took many years.

    Any tool that helps you learn is a good thing. Just because you see this as junk does not mean it can't be used by someone else to learn the basics. Could they just get a guitar and your piece of paper? Sure. But if the software and hardware helps, who are you to judge? It's obviously not for you so instead of being so closed minded about a product that might just help someone learn the gift of music, why not embrace thinking different? I am sure many had your same attitude when the synths and keyboards were introduced in the 60's.

    BTW, if anyone wants to save money, I am sure Sgt. Pepper would be happy to jot some chords down on a piece of paper for you. Just message him for his guitar course he is teaching.
     
  16. C DM macrumors Westmere

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    #16
    So many assumptions about so many things from so many people. Kind of shocking, but I guess it shouldn't be.
     
  17. SgtPepper12 macrumors 6502a

    SgtPepper12

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    Germany
    #17
    If someone is actually convinced that this thing is the best way to learn playing the guitar for him, then he should go ahead. But it's still absolutely implausible to me how it's supposed to help (and your post didn't really clear that up either. Just calling other people 'closed minded' doesn't magically relieve you from actually explaining yourself). If it was a full fledged guitar with MIDI-output this would even be a good price, but paying 300 bucks for a stripped down guitar that doesn't even make musical sounds? How could anyone recommend this to anyone, it's an obvious waste.
     
  18. OtherJesus macrumors 6502

    OtherJesus

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    Bay Area, California
    #18
    Sorry, buddy. But you're reaching.
    By all means, if you think this is a great product... Go buy some. But your comparisons are way off when it comes to this toy.
     
  19. Iconoclysm macrumors 68020

    Iconoclysm

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    #19
    Agreed, it's complete junk. And nevermind if you actually want to do anything beyond some basic chords...
     
  20. Iconoclysm macrumors 68020

    Iconoclysm

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    #20
    This would be more like trying to learn how to play piano on some children's leapfrog piano with 5 keys. Studies show there are 9 guitarists within 1 mile of everyone in the US on average. This happened without the use of one of these...and I'm damn sure that one lesson with a half decent teacher then practicing on your own would pay off far better. They have lessons online as well, you can even take them using Facetime or Skype.

    What he's saying, what I'm saying, is that this is going to push you in the wrong direction and possibly make you have to unlearn your piss poor technique.

    This thing costs $250...you do realize you could buy a cheap but full scale guitar and any number of adapters for every device out there for that price? And that they make learning software for that stuff as well? It's this device that is a waste of time.
     
  21. ThunderSkunk macrumors 68030

    ThunderSkunk

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    #21
    That thing is totally cool.

    I wish I had something like that to practice on when I first learned. I got a warped old neck with strings held on to it with wood screws, and in order to hear any sound, I had to bite on the headstock like Beethoven uphill both ways in a snowstorm.
     
  22. maryunani macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    #22
    $299. Pre-order.

    Okay, I won't say it's "expensive" because of obvious subjectivity. But there are so many guitars out there that sells for under this price. And with that guitar, even a simple acoustic, you can do, and learn, a lot (yes, a lot) more than you would with this Jamstik. Some of those include:

    1. Real audio feedback
    2. The ability to do more than just basic chords (melody, power chords, etc)
    3. The need to be able to tune your guitar (yes I would say it's a plus. Of course tuning is something that you'd need to learn, plus it's a hassle, but it's actually very easy if you're not tone-deaf, knowing the theory of tuning would really help your understanding of the scales, and come on. Sooner or later you're going to have to learn it anyway. No self-respecting guitarist would feel the need to give the guitar to a friend to tune it. There's tons of apps to do it anyway)

    Of course that doesn't mean that the Jamstik is in my view a *complete* waste of space. It's small and portable, and yes of course it can help you learn while you travel. Sadly, though, the advantage (yes, not plural) ends there, and ultimately not enough to justify a purchase.

    As an added note, I do realise that some of us here would really like to learn the guitar with the assistance of our tech gadgets. It actually does make it a whole lot easier, and fun as well. Of course as a self-taught guitarist I can just take the ol' "do it the old fashion way! And get off my lawn, you crazy kids!" approach but there's actually an iPhone app called "Yousician", it's a freemium app, and it is a dream accompaniment to learning the guitar. I can vouch for it, I essentially learned the guitar all over again from the very start with this app and really enjoyed it. I'd recommend it to all aspiring musicians.

    I don't say this to a lot of products. But don't waste your time with this. Not that I want to be nosy with your respective lives, it's just that I'd prefer a product with minimum value and scratch-your-head marketing slogans to not be a hole in anyone's wallet.
     
  23. teslo, Jun 14, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2015

    teslo macrumors 6502a

    teslo

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    #23
    people here are funny.. if you're a creative individual, you can make anything into a 'worthwhile' sound. why pretend this is for learning guitar only? why pretend everyone approaches an instrument the same way? why pretend having acoustics is 'better' for everyone because this has to be plugged in to make noise?

    it seems like some people are insinuating this doesn't control any notes, it's just a finger-position tool for hitting chords like guitar hero or something. look around youtube at vids, this is a 'midi controller' that plays notes, bends, etc.. it can be used by anyone looking to write songs and record 1st drafts, maybe even record a track to a billboard top 40 smash hit - in the right hands.

    i'd also like to know how many people here have tried the thing before chiming in. $300 is expensive for a total beginner on mom's allowance, but i'd get one if i had the disposable income i had a few years ago - just to eff around.
     
  24. jephrey macrumors regular

    jephrey

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    Dec 19, 2005
    #24
    Heavy opinions both ways here.
    I've played acoustic and electric guitar for 20 years (self-taught, casually)
    I'd be curious trying this out as a tool to help me with some of the scales stuff that is still a tad over my head and it is an interesting option for beginners. Others may find it useless but I'm sure none of these comments came from someone who has tried it out. It might actually be more fun for someone who plays than a beginner trying to learn - although that seems to be the target market.
    Personally, tho, I'd rather put the $300 towards a new real guitar so this "drawing" is right up my alley.
     
  25. kingtj macrumors 68020

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    Brunswick, MD
    #25
    Have you actually had a chance to use one? I haven't, so I will refrain from giving it a negative review. But in general, I think you're right.

    When first learning guitar, one of the things I found most difficult (and still do) is switching my fingers between positions rapidly enough so the next series of notes strummed or chords played comes out smoothly and with proper timing. You tend to master a number of basic chords and changes pretty quickly. There's sort of a "core set" of them which are really useful and fairly easy to hold the finger positions for that guitarists can get a lot of mileage out of. (I'm thinking your first position C, Am, and G chords, for example.) But it quickly gets more complicated, and even a first position F chord takes some practice at holding all of the right strings down tightly enough so it rings out properly (especially on an acoustic guitar, vs an electric).

    I don't think there's any really good way to practice the mechanics of holding and changing chord positions "cleanly" except for practicing it a lot on the real instrument. This is where any of the programs like RockSmith will make better tutors than devices having you use a simulated guitar-like object.

    That said, if you're already a decent guitar player -- maybe Jamstik makes sense as a very portable tool to use as a controller to an iOS device, to allow playing guitar parts of songs anywhere, any time? I assume you don't need to tune it, so that's a plus as well (especially since traveling with a guitar practically ensures it will need re-tuning thanks to temperature and humidity changes).


     

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