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Support community for JTV.


JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by Nige_ on 2011-06-18 12:42:09

Hi guys.

I'm on the verge of making some changes here and the answer will determine my course of action. Given Line6's incursion into effects and its more exotic voices on the HDx000's (synth tracking), is there anything on the horizon for guitar to midi conversion? Surely with the VDI there exists an opportunity to effect some form of conversion?

I'm sure that Line6 are reticent about having the Variax identified as a midi guitar but must express my frustration given I own 4 Variaxes including the ultra-rare 5 string bass and a JTV (equally rare, LOL!!!!), that I cannot get a single poly note of midi from these loverly instruments.

I don't want to start attaching Roland outboard kit to a Variax so I would be overwhelmed with joy if there were a solution already or one coming along on the (near) horizon.

I am a truly crap keyboard player and really need midi to push some projects along!

Cheers.



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by ozbadman on 2011-06-18 13:00:37

Much as I understand the request, unfortunately Line 6 does not as a rule comment on future product direction.

I'm sure this has been asked before, and as you point out, maybe the JTV has sufficient processing power and code space to be able to do it (the previous genreation were maxed out on both I believe).

Your best bet is to put in a feature request here:

http://line6.com/company/contact/productfeedback/



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by Nige_ on 2011-06-18 13:20:44

I appreciate the comment however the dropdown on that page offers the Variax 300 acoustic  as the only option. I was not looking for midi out from the guitar but rather the interception of the VDI (Variax digital interface) to link to a midi converter. It seems pointless (and a great pity) adding a GK pickup when the Variax already has a 'hex-pickup' and outputs this via the VDI (although I am not wholly convinced that the strings are output separately at this point).

Clarification would be welcome, even if Line6 cannot comment on product development.

All the best.



RE: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by Line6Don on 2011-06-22 15:59:02

Hey Nige_,

I would please ask that you proceed to forward your product suggestions idea using the product feedback form that ozbadman referred you to. For the product, please select the Variax workbench, and in the body of your suggestion please make a note of the actually product you would like to see this on, just mention that the product you were looking for was not selectable.

This would be much appreciated. Unfortunately we do not have any information regarding details of upcoming products, release dates, or upcoming features. Although customers filling out the product feedback form is how we have come to make the products that we do, which is based off of customer requests.



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by Nipp on 2013-01-07 07:58:04

I see no drawback for Line6 having an option for midi from guitar - on the contrary major benefit boost.

Versaitlity of JTV would increase by a magnitude.

The potential for making the best ever midi guitar solution is surely there:

a) sensor on each string

b) having the knowledge for realtime pitch tracking

Some kind of box to connect to unit or something.

I would get a JTV - that's for sure.



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by mdmayfield on 2013-01-07 13:03:28

I'm convinced that the Variax and HD500 hardware would be more than capable of doing excellent guitar-to-MIDI conversion, with appropriate firmware. Possible, and fairly straightforward if you had detailed specs and the existing source code, although it'd probably take a couple dozen person-years from experienced engineers. The VDI cable carries a MIDI signal, and the HD500 can output MIDI. All the hardware potential is there.

My theory is that Line 6 already got burned with public perception of the first Variax - everybody probably thought it was a guitar synth and pooh-poohed it. I know many bandmates who thought that at first. So I suspect they're steering clear of MIDI note conversion for that reason; plus, it's such a niche market that it's probably a risky R&D investment (see "couple dozen person-years," above), not to mention legal costs for navigating the minefield of software patents.



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by phil_m on 2013-01-07 14:10:09

I just don't think there's a whole lot of incentive from Line 6's end to put MIDI functionality into the Variax. They don't make any MIDI-based processors, and it's not really something I foresee them trying to get into.



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by Nipp on 2013-01-13 01:45:17

mdmayfield wrote:

I'm convinced that the Variax and HD500 hardware would be more than capable of doing excellent guitar-to-MIDI conversion, with appropriate firmware. Possible, and fairly straightforward if you had detailed specs and the existing source code, although it'd probably take a couple dozen person-years from experienced engineers. The VDI cable carries a MIDI signal, and the HD500 can output MIDI. All the hardware potential is there.

My theory is that Line 6 already got burned with public perception of the first Variax - everybody probably thought it was a guitar synth and pooh-poohed it. I know many bandmates who thought that at first. So I suspect they're steering clear of MIDI note conversion for that reason; plus, it's such a niche market that it's probably a risky R&D investment (see "couple dozen person-years," above), not to mention legal costs for navigating the minefield of software patents.

As you write - it's all there.

And potential for doing it better than everybody else is there too.

And the demand is surely there - I see topics on KVR and Cockos.com asking for best solution.

There are a couple of things about Line6 policy that is hard to get:

#1. Why not reveal what is coming - that's what you want with software - a product that grows.

Problem with software products is the second hand value is dead once it's not improved anymore.

With flash memory technology you can improve a product even after you bought it - that is a strength.

So no news about future - my thinking is :

- This is what we get - I stay away.

If I knew there were more ethnic instruments on the rise - I would go for it right away.

#2. No midi out for what you play

It would increase usability incredibly.

Everybody wanting a midi guitar solution as well as all emulated instruments would make such a nobrainer for every guitarplayer.



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by Nipp on 2013-01-13 01:58:36

phil_m wrote:

I just don't think there's a whole lot of incentive from Line 6's end to put MIDI functionality into the Variax. They don't make any MIDI-based processors, and it's not really something I foresee them trying to get into.

But if everybody that plays guitar at some time or another would find midi part interesting to expand sound.

In the 80's McLaughlin and his band Mahavishnu Orchestra they experimented a lot with this.

Today I see guitarplayers doing home recording that wants it - due to they do not know keyboards.

And if you want notation on what you play - again you have great help from midi addon.

To have midi guitar that handle polyphonic excellent - wow, what a great addon.

And everybody doing home recording today that plays guitar - a big market I would say.

They would get a JTV without thinking twice.



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by phil_m on 2013-01-13 07:06:04

And everybody doing home recording today that plays guitar - a big market I would say.

They would get a JTV without thinking twice.

How many people want MIDI capability or have a MIDI processor? I'd say of the guitar market, we're talking a market share that in the single digits.

I just don't see it something Line 6 wants to spend money to do. If someone wants to add the MIDI capability to the Variax, it's easy enough for them to get a hex pickup and put it on the Variax.

The one big difference between the way the Variax works and a traditional MIDI system works is that all of the processing is done on the guitar on the Variax. With a MIDI guitar, all the processing is done outboard. It just seems to be a fundamental difference in how Line 6 thinks it should done versus a MIDI system.



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by spikey on 2013-01-13 12:36:55

phil_m wrote:

I just don't think there's a whole lot of incentive from Line 6's end to put MIDI functionality into the Variax. They don't make any MIDI-based processors, and it's not really something I foresee them trying to get into.

OTOH the moderators said the same thing about adding alternate tuning on the Variax, right here on THIS forum, about 10 or so years ago...He spoke for Line 6 on this forum at the time, and It just couldnt be done he said.  While back then, Roland "owned" that maket. I know and remember this well because I disagreed with the moderator then, and told him that him and his narrow minded attitude would be proven wrong... Funny how things change given time, isnt it.... The latest JTV can do now multi alternate tunings on a professional level. So much for saying " I cant" much less "we shouldnt"....

phil_m wrote:

How many people want MIDI capability or have a MIDI processor?

More than you or I may think. Compare apples to apples and there is a market for the 13 pin roland addon.... Lets not forget that Fender, Godin, Parker and others see this market too....



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by spikey on 2013-01-13 12:50:56

My first guess (and thats all it really is), is that Line 6 runs their business like a grocery store. They barely have enough checkers at the checkout stands now to cover the load, and we are wanting to add on to the parking lot....



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by Nipp on 2013-01-14 12:09:57

spikey wrote:

My first guess (and thats all it really is), is that Line 6 runs their business like a grocery store. They barely have enough checkers at the checkout stands now to cover the load, and we are wanting to add on to the parking lot....

Could be - but I see it a bit differently - we increase their business so they have to build a second floor and have to add on to parking lot as well to avoid traffic jam from main road



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by Rewolf48 on 2013-01-16 05:30:11

Put me down on the list of those that would be interested - I play both Keys and Guitar and sometimes want to double the guitar parts with keyboard but currently have to trigger a sequence to achieve this.

I think that all of the necessary bits are already in the JTV - for example pitch recognition is in place otherwise the Virtual Capo couldn't work, so all it needs it the firmaware to send the recognised notes over the VDI to an HD and then have the option of defining which channel it is sent out on - plus Volume and Tone controller data (pitch bend tracking would be nice too).



Re: JTV / VariaVDI - MIDI
by Nipp on 2013-01-17 02:12:37

Rewolf48 wrote:

Put me down on the list of those that would be interested - I play both Keys and Guitar and sometimes want to double the guitar parts with keyboard but currently have to trigger a sequence to achieve this.

I think that all of the necessary bits are already in the JTV - for example pitch recognition is in place otherwise the Virtual Capo couldn't work, so all it needs it the firmaware to send the recognised notes over the VDI to an HD and then have the option of defining which channel it is sent out on - plus Volume and Tone controller data (pitch bend tracking would be nice too).

I knew about open tunings, but not virtual capo - cool.

My thinking is a separate midi addon box to connect VDI or something, that also has midi out for note on/off etc. And a through for VDI go further into other equipment if any.

Thanks for your vote.




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