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Gibson announces limited Firebird X with built-in effects

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After a couple of weeks of Apple-esque hype, Gibson CEO Henry Juszkiewicz gave what he calls the revolutionary the Firebird X a smashing start at the press launch in New York. Featuring built-in effects, robotic tuning and coming with wireless pedal controllers, the lightweight new model is being offered in a strictly limited run.
New York's Hard Rock Cafe played host to the launch of Gibson's latest attempt at bringing the electric six-string into the digital age, where Juszkiewicz stunned members of the assembled press by smashing a guitar to pieces to usher in a new era of guitar technology. Previous outings have included the Dusk Tiger which allowed for PC-enabled tone changes and incorporated the kind of robotic, self-tuning technology seen in the earlier Dark Fire and carried through to the new model.

In addition to the Firebird X's RoboHead tuners and Tune-o-matic/Piezo robot bridge to help keep the guitar in prefect tune, players are offered onboard, fader-fueled multiple effects such as distortion, EQ, reverb and compression and front facing toggle controls. Gibson says that players should be able to control numerous effects on the fly, with "a minimum of motion and disruption from playing the music." An accessory pack includes Bluetooth pedals for wireless expression and tone control.
To the front of the lightweight, chambered ash body can also be found the familiar volume and control knobs and 5-way pickup selector and a not-so-familiar LED-lit Master Control Knob. There's also a threesome of FBX pickups - alnico II for the neck, ceramic for the middle and alnico V for the bridge. The brand new electronics within come with a Pure-Analog Digital Signal Processing engine with Goldtone FX and the single-piece maple neck sports a Brazilian Marblewood fingerboard sporting 23 frets.
Ableton Live 8 and Guitar Rig Pro 4 are supplied with the Firebird X, for digital tone processing via a PC or Mac and the whole package comes with a special FBX vinyl case.
The reception to the new model on musician forums has been somewhat mixed, with a fair amount of passion coming from both the "Fail" and the "Future" camps. Gibson are banking on its "revolutionary Firebird X" becoming an iconic collector's piece and to help it achieve such a status, is limiting its production run. It will become available worldwide on December 11 and carries a recommended retail price of US$5,570. Once the initial run is gone, that's it – there'll be no more.
 
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Jimi Hendrix' favorite guitar for sale


Now this is something that won't come along again. It's the favorite guitar of Jimi Hendrix. Voted by everyone from Rolling Stone to Time as the best guitar player ever, Hendrix favorite guitar was this vintage Epiphone FT79 and was “used for almost everything he composed" whilst he was in the United States. Given to a friend just before he died, it was subsequently on numerous recordings and film soundtracks including those by Dusty Springfield, Walker Brothers, Blue Mink, Paul McCartney and on David Bowie’s Diamond Dogs. It's coming up for auction, and is estimated to fetch GBP80,000-120,000, which seems incredibly cheap for such a piece of musical history.
The guitar will be offered in the Bonhams Entertainment Memorabilia auction on December 15, 2010 and is estimated to fetch £80,000-120,000. Hendrix, widely considered to be the best electric guitarist in the history of rock music, bought the vintage Epiphone FT79 guitar second hand for about $25 in New York during his first tour of the States.
He kept it for three years – longer than any other documented Hendrix guitar and spent weeks recording, jamming and performing with it in New York, Washington DC and Los Angeles. The acoustic Epiphone became his favorite instrument and his girlfriend Kathy Etchingham has said, “it was used very, very heavily, continuously, all the time. Jimi had music coming out of every pore. One minute he’d be eating his breakfast, the next he’d say ‘hey’ and pick up the guitar and play the riffs in his head...” His manager Chas Chandler remarked that Hendrix was so attached to the guitar he would even take it with him to the bathroom. He continued to use the guitar regularly after moving to Brook Street in London, at around the time Electric Ladyland was completed. He was captured on film playing Elvis’s "Hound Dog" on this distinctive instrument at the after-show party following The Experience’s Royal Albert Hall concert of February 18, 1969. He gave it to a fellow-musician in March 1970 and it was subsequently used on numerous recordings and film soundtracks including those by Dusty Springfield, Walker Brothers, Blue Mink, Paul McCartney and on David Bowie’s Diamond Dogs.
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Misa digital guitar set for CES launch as the Kitara


By Paul Ridden
08:43 December 24, 2010

5 Pictures


The Kitara's onboard polyphonic synthesizer has a library of over a hundred different sounds, which a user can edit or combine to produce new tonesImage Gallery (5 images)

Not too long ago, Gizmag featured a futuristic digital guitar which replaced the strings of a traditional axe with rows of six buttons on the neck and a resistive touch interface for tweaking tones. Now, the designer has announced that a production model is available for pre-order. The internals have been upgraded, the touchscreen in now capacitive, there's now an onboard polyphonic synthesizer, and the digitar has been given a name – the Kitara.

The demo vid we included with our introduction to the instrument at the beginning of 2010 became a YouTube sensation, and has now been viewed over two million times. However, designer Michael Zarimis told us that, even with this success and a dedicated legion of followers, it's "been really tough getting to this stage, even with over 2 million views on a YouTube video it is very hard to get support from people who share my perspective, but somehow it happened, we have the ball rolling now and it is a very exciting time."
No longer based in Australia, Zarimis says that "to create a high quality product we need to be at the manufacturing hub of the world – China." So, Misa Digital has moved to Hong Kong and will be ready to ship the first instrument in April 2011.



The Kitara (a play on the Greek word Kithara, which is an ancient stringed instrument from the Lyre family) is currently being offered in two flavors, a standard model with a high-density injection-molded ABS polymer body and a limited edition, numbered version machined from a block of aluminum. Both share the same feature set, which includes an 8-inch low latency, multi-touch capacitive touchscreen where the pickups and bridge would be on a traditional guitar, and a full-length fretboard with 24 frets – with 6 buttons at each fret, making 144 individual notes.
The user can choose to have the display show digitally-duplicated strings, so that the instrument can be played somewhat like a normal guitar – where the fingertips can be used to tap on individual strings, perform string combinations or strum up and down for chord play. A player can also choose to allocate a different sound to each string on the screen and much more besides, such as effects mapping to x and y axes.
The onboard polyphonic synthesizer has a library of over a hundred different sounds, which a user can edit or combine to produce new tones, and if the millions of sound possibilities offered by the instrument itself are not enough, the Kitara is also compatible with MIDI devices. The Linux operating system has made it through from the prototype, and the production model now sports an audio out jack to connect straight to an amplifier.
For those who can already play the guitar, the Kitara offers some familiarity in shape and form, but with much more room for expressive experimentation. For anyone who has never picked up a guitar, it's a chance to learn something new.



Misa Digital Instruments will unveil the Kitara at CES 2011 in Las Vegas and then at the Winter NAMM at the Anaheim Convention Center.
Both versions are available now for pre-order, the standard edition carrying a US$849 price tag, and the limited edition aluminum model costing US$2,899.
A short video has been produced showing the new models:
 
The fender strat has some unusual mods, looks like a Jaguar style vibrato tailpiece with a locking nut set up. Not a Fender typical strat combo, but it could be a "Pawn Shop" Fender item. The "blackout" pups are not stock as well, this is a interesting guitar, would love to play it. Cant tell if the serial number starts with an "M" that would make it a MIM, or rather made in mexico making it worth 300 - 500 American dollars. No M in the serial number you could prolly bump that value up to about $700 - $1000
The "Squire" on the other hand prolly fetch you $75.
Thanks for posting Wino!!
 
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