Thursday, January 19, 2006

Gibson + Ethernet = ??

Remember that Ethernet guitar I mentioned? Well it has come back to haunt me.

The Gibson Digital Guitar brings the 1930s technology of conventional electric guitars into the Digital Age according to the press release. It looks like a regular Gibson electric, but it adds an Ethernet port and Gibson will be showing it at NAMM, though no word on price or availablity...

The Gibson Digital Guitar System features:

* A genuine Gibson guitar, 100% compatible with existing equipment.
* Gibson's patented HEX pickup, which senses up-and-down motion (like an acoustic guitar pickup) and side-to-side motion (like an electric guitar pickup) for each string.
* MaGIC-enabled digital transport, carrying multiple channels in both directions over standard Ethernet cable.
* Gibson's BreakOut Box, with 8 outputs (1/4" jacks) - one for each string, plus classic humbucking pickup output and pass-through for microphone; 2 inputs carry audio back to guitar for monitoring; split mode assigns strings to different amps.

Wait a minute. Did that say EIGHT outputs? I have enough trouble with one!

Gibson has developed a prototype digital guitar that converts the analog signal into a digital signal inside the guitar. Stray frequencies entering the guitar pickups are eliminated along with analog line noise induced through the guitar cable. A guitarist can run a cable over 100 meters with no loss of audio quality.

What if you want wireless? Does it support Wi-Fi?!

The Gibson Digital Guitar system delivers signal processing on a string-by-string basis, providing increased quality and flexibility, including the ability to adjust volume, pan and equalization of each string individually.

MaGIC technology
MaGIC, developed by Gibson Labs, stands for Media-accelerated Global Information Carrier and is designed to replace all wiring systems in both the musical instrument fields and consumer electronic applications with a single Ethernet cable. MaGIC-enabled consumer electronics devices will allow daisy chaining devices and plug-and-play capabilities.

If Sony and Apple support it, maybe I'll buy one...


Adrian said...


But I ask again: why not USB or FireWire? WHY Ethernet?

adrian said...

OK, forget what I just said. I think I figured it out on my own. lol

ethernet has a much longer cable range than either USB or FireWire. So that must be the reason. You can use a loooooooooong ethernet cable, rather than a relatively short USB or FireWire cable.

mchgtr said...

Like I know?! ;)

...but I think your guess is right. Certainly, USB and FireWire only work well over comparatively short distances.

Still wondering how you go wireless though ;)

adrian said...

Now, if they put a USB port on it, either instead of or in addition to the Ethernet port, you could simply attach an inexpensive USB-to-802.11g dongle, and there you have it, instant WiFi.

Or they could put the WiFi inside the guitar as a build-to-order option and charge a ridiculous amount of money for it.

mchgtr said...

Are there any 802.11g dongle's that don't require a power supply?

adrian said...

they're powered by the USB bus... which I assume would be powered by a battery inside the guitar.

adrian said...

dongle is an obscene-sounding word.

i'm just saying.

mchgtr said...

Wouldn't they suck battery juice? But then I guess the regular wireless thingos (avoiding the 'D' word) they use on guitars probably use up batteries pretty quick.

Words that sound obscene, but aren't:


adrian said...

{tasteless joke about sucking and juice}