NAMM 2013: Robocaster Melds Guitar & Controller

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controllerism namm NAMM 2013 Robocaster
Last updated 20 August, 2014

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Moldover – the man who first coined the term “controllerism”, and who has been at the forefront of the scene ever since – has never been one to follow trends with the performance gear he concocts. His latest project, the Robocaster, continues that trend of innovation and while it will surprise many people, it is one of the most fun Midi controllers I’ve seen so far at the NAMM Show 2013, melding guitar and controller to make a brand new instrument.

Here’s how it works: The audio leaves the guitar like with any normal guitar, but there’s also a USB which outputs digital information from the guitar’s four arcade buttons, touchstrips, accelerometers, volume control and other input devices. This information controls effects software which processes the guitar’s output, allowing the performer to add filters, harmonies, way-wah, pitch modulation and any other controllerism-style audio processing desired just by mapping the controls to the desired Midi virtual instruments in the laptop.

The Robocaster is a true family affair – Moldover’s brother was responsible for the firmware – and it’s been brought to market with the help of Visionary Instruments. Just like Moldover’s brother, I couldn’t play it (being left-handed), but the video of Moldover performing on it will give you a sense of how much fun it is.

Did you like the Robocaster? Do you think Midi controllers that push the boundaries like this are exciting? Do you think we’ll see more of this kind of stuff? Please share your thoughts in the comments.