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Old 01-23-2019, 07:46 AM
Dino Silone Dino Silone is offline
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Default Modeling pedal (or box) for acoustic guitar

I asked this question on the Fender Acoustasonic (sp?) Telecaster thread, but it was buried - and it probably wasn’t the right place to ask.

What impressed me about what Fender (and I guess others) have done, was that they did a surprisingly OK job of taking a not-very-good acoustic guitar, and making it sound like a bunch of different (and better) acoustic guitars.

That got me thinking about what you could do if you started with a better acoustic guitar to begin with, and used modeling to make it sound like other acoustic guitars. Is there such a thing? I found pedals intended to make electric guitars sound sort of like acoustic guitars (like the Boss AC-3), but are there pedals that are actually intended to be used with an acoustic electric that do more or less what Fender and Fishman have done? Does Fishman sell the sensors and modeling stuff separately, such that it could be an after-market mod to an acoustic guitar?

One difference between what I’m talking about and the pedals intended to be used with electric guitars, is that the pedals are designed to work with the spectral characteristics of electromagnetic pickups, where what I’m talking about would be (potentially) designed to work with the characteristics of piezo or microphonic sensors, perhaps (but not necessarily) in conjunction with electromagnetic pickups.

Another difference might be in the number of sensors. I guess, in an ideal world, you could do a better job at this by having separate sensors for each string, and then mixing back. That would already be much more sophisticated than the AC-3, I think.

I’m a complete newb to this stuff - I’ve taken the “buy a bunch of different acoustic guitars” approach up to now. But I’m curious...
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Old 01-23-2019, 08:11 AM
mercy mercy is offline
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i dont know exactly what you are asking, you want it onboard the guitar or not. There is a box that is excellent called the Mamabear but I think Fishman has one also.
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Old 01-23-2019, 08:46 AM
Monsoon1 Monsoon1 is offline
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Edit* completely irrelevant post about this thread topic.
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Last edited by Monsoon1; 01-23-2019 at 02:51 PM.
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Old 01-23-2019, 08:52 AM
J Patrick J Patrick is offline
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The Fishman Aura Specrtum DI does that...
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Old 01-23-2019, 09:15 AM
Tahitijack Tahitijack is offline
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I think what you want is a Yamaha AG Stomp. Unfortunately it's discontinued, but like all gear you can find them for sale at the usual sources. I had one and in a period of stupid I sold it. Good luck.
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Old 01-23-2019, 09:15 AM
redir redir is offline
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I used to hate USP's like the Fishman Matrix and so on. They have that fake, canned, rubbery sound. Something like a K and K is more natural. That was up until I discovered the aforementioned Aura pedals by Fishman. Now I won't use anything else if I plug the acoustic guitar in.
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Old 01-23-2019, 09:50 AM
ripdotcom ripdotcom is offline
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I use a Voice Live 3 and Voice Live Play Acoustic only when i need it and primarily for vocals. It seems to have a nice Chorus and that is about all I think I would use one for.
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Old 01-23-2019, 10:59 AM
Dino Silone Dino Silone is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mercy View Post
i dont know exactly what you are asking, you want it onboard the guitar or not. There is a box that is excellent called the Mamabear but I think Fishman has one also.
I’m just asking out of curiosity - I spent a lot of my career on acoustic signal processing, though not for a number of years now. So it’s more technical curiosity.

What I was asking was whether there were products that do what the Fishman piece of that Fender guitar do, as aftermarket add-ons.

What I envisioned was a box with firmware/sorftware that took the input of one or more sensors on the guitar (either ones specially intended to work with this system, or standard acoustic guitar sensors), and allowed the guitar to mimic the characteristics of other acoustic guitars.

I don’t mean chorus or reverb or any sort of other effects. Just something that makes one acoustic guitar sound like a different acoustic guitar.

I’ll take a look at the Mamabear and also look harder for the Fishman one. I’m not really planning to buy one - I really don’t plug in much at all, and I already have a bunch of different guitars. Just curious, really.

Edit: I did look at a few of these on YouTube, and the most interesting seemed to be the DTAR Mama Bear. The Fishman was also impressive, but it seemed aimed mostly at microphone modeling. The Fishman spiel was that it works best when you choose a body model that most closely matches your actual guitar. They’ll even do the modeling for you. That said, it sounded pretty amazing when doing what they said it’s supposed to do.

Last edited by Dino Silone; 01-23-2019 at 11:30 AM.
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Old 01-23-2019, 01:05 PM
fuman fuman is offline
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I have a Zoom A2.1U. I think the models are pretty cool, if not always a good mimic of what they purport to be modeled on. You can certainly get a variety of good acoustic sounds. I have even used it in a band context with an electric guitar and a tube amp modeler, and it worked well for me. The drawback with a pedal like that is you get almost too much choice, but you can make your own presets and clump them together.
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Old 01-24-2019, 04:38 AM
Jack R Jack R is offline
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Look at the Zoom a3. Discontinued but you can still find them. Run mine into monitor speakers at home.
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Old 01-24-2019, 12:24 PM
FrankHudson FrankHudson is offline
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I'm not sure if the idea of using a "good" acoustic guitar is the best platform for modeling different instruments. I could be wrong, but I'd suspect that the more inert the sound that is triggering the sound, the less it'll have unpredictable interactions with the desired sound.

The Aura pedal has already been mentioned, and I suspect that some of it's technology is what informs the new product for Fender/Fishman. The Tonedexter is another example. In both those cases, a complex sound the acoustic part of the acoustic guitar is the assumed input, and so neither is designed to make your all-mahogany parlor guitar sound like a D-28 or vice-versa. These devices have too much information from a "good" acoustic that will be played in various ways to make A sound like B.

The Line6 Variax is another example, though not a pedal. It starts from a simpler electric guitar like body, not "good acoustic" base, and the results are better to my ears than the simplest attempts using only a set of piezo pickups on an electric guitar in sounding "real." Alas, I don't hear their technology improving much in the last few years, though now that Yamaha has bought them I suppose it could advance to another level.

MIDI virtual instruments are not a pedal per se either, but since you can add a MIDI pickup to a guitar and put a box (or laptop) on the floor, you could view them as such anyway. Not that much success in the virtual instruments I've tried that attempt to be well-known acoustic guitars, but there's a great amount VI stuff out there. I don't use them to sound like acoustic guitars, but I do use them a great deal of the time to be other kinds of unusual string instruments that I don't have access to or money or space to collect.

You can mount a MIDI pickup on an acoustic, but I have my pickups on solid body electrics.
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Old 01-24-2019, 04:59 PM
slooky slooky is offline
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I have a Boss Gp 10 with gk3 pickup. It does all kinds of modelling. Gibson ,,Martin acoustics , 12 strings, classical. Sounds fantastic.
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Old 01-24-2019, 06:56 PM
J Patrick J Patrick is offline
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....i’m just gonna add some of the experience I had when I actually owned a Fishman Aura...the pedal I claimed could “do that” above....I had two setups...a K&K pwm sbt...and a d-tar wavelength ust....both pretty good pickups in their own right....I did not have a Fishman ust which is what I believe the Aura was designed around...but it did have a mag option if I recall which I used with a vintage deararmond....

...the K&K did not play nicely...never sounded good.....the d-tar worked well enough but fell short of delivering realistic representations of the modeled guitar sounds...but it still sounded good...the mag setting worked well with the resophonic model but not much else....

...it could be that way better results could be had with a Fishman pickup.....i’m skeptical......I don’t think the tall order of accurately modeling various guitars and making them available digitally for use with any pickup has been reached yet....yet!...I do currently own a Tonedexter and it’s an impressive device...but it doesn’t do exactly what the OP is asking for.....
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Old 01-25-2019, 06:26 AM
Dino Silone Dino Silone is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankHudson View Post
I'm not sure if the idea of using a "good" acoustic guitar is the best platform for modeling different instruments. I could be wrong, but I'd suspect that the more inert the sound that is triggering the sound, the less it'll have unpredictable interactions with the desired sound.

The Aura pedal has already been mentioned, and I suspect that some of it's technology is what informs the new product for Fender/Fishman. The Tonedexter is another example. In both those cases, a complex sound the acoustic part of the acoustic guitar is the assumed input, and so neither is designed to make your all-mahogany parlor guitar sound like a D-28 or vice-versa. These devices have too much information from a "good" acoustic that will be played in various ways to make A sound like B.

The Line6 Variax is another example, though not a pedal. It starts from a simpler electric guitar like body, not "good acoustic" base, and the results are better to my ears than the simplest attempts using only a set of piezo pickups on an electric guitar in sounding "real." Alas, I don't hear their technology improving much in the last few years, though now that Yamaha has bought them I suppose it could advance to another level.

MIDI virtual instruments are not a pedal per se either, but since you can add a MIDI pickup to a guitar and put a box (or laptop) on the floor, you could view them as such anyway. Not that much success in the virtual instruments I've tried that attempt to be well-known acoustic guitars, but there's a great amount VI stuff out there. I don't use them to sound like acoustic guitars, but I do use them a great deal of the time to be other kinds of unusual string instruments that I don't have access to or money or space to collect.

You can mount a MIDI pickup on an acoustic, but I have my pickups on solid body electrics.
This makes a ton of sense. When I was thinking about how I would design something like this, I thouht the “cleanest” way to approach the problem would be to have a pickup for each string, and to use those signals to generate information about attack, sustain, fundamental frequency, etc - much in the way that a midi front end does. The modeling box would then use those six, string-dependent inputs to drive what amounts to re-synthesis of the desired signals.

I have no idea of the available pedals/processors do it that way. But, if they did, it would mean that the initial input wouldn’t have to be a good guitar or a bad guitar - it wouldn’t matter, because the signal from the guitar would have been reduced to a few parameters.

Thanks to all for thoughtful responses.
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Old 01-25-2019, 12:29 PM
Sonics Sonics is offline
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Fishman, Zoom, Yamaha and Roland all make modelling pedals. The Fishman is severely limited in that it has no built-in effects, besides compression. OTOH it is expandable. You can go to the Fishman website and download via an app various sound images from their vast library of various guitars, resonators, mandolins...and ukes (I think).

Taylors, Martins, Ovations, Gibsons, Breedloves, et al. are all represented, just select the Brand, then the model and download the image into one of the 16 available memory slots in the pedal. You can swap, store and replace these images on your computer.

Fishman will also create sound images of your guitar at their professional studios using some VERY expensive studio microphones. You may also want to consider that if you're leaning towards the Tonedexter solution...and a SM57!
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