INSTRUMENT 1 Firmware 1.1.20


#1

Hi all! We’re excited to announce that our latest firmware release for the INSTRUMENT 1 is now live to the public – firmware 1.1.20. Check out the full update notes below, and as always, let us know your thoughts!

WHAT’S NEW

  • You strummed, we listened. The INSTRUMENT 1 just got a major playability update for muting strings. Now simply strum a chord, and when you lift off the fingerboard the strings will automatically mute. Easier than pie.

  • Bonus: Strummed notes will ring out for as long as you can hold them with new infinite sustain. Can you hear it?

  • The volume knob also learned a new trick – it now sends data to your DAW (via CC#9) so you can map your favorite effects, dynamics, and more when using an external sound card or line-out from your iPad. Awesomely optional.

FIXED

  • Previously, the bridge on Tap Fretted Strings mode was strummable. Now, it’s tappable. That just makes sense.

  • Bow method also gained velocity sensitivity, for the orchestrally-inclined. Perfect for Hans Zimmer covers – or John Williams, if you prefer.

(Artiphon Blog)


#2

Only showing up in the desktop editor for now – but wow, that’s a lot to explore. Congratulations and thanks to all for the thought and hard work that’s gone into this. Can you say a bit more about the volume knob CC? I expect it’ll be obvious once I start poking around at it…


#3

OK, got it – the volume knob sends a CC9 value from 0-127 in increments of 4 per click. Nothing to see here unless you want to, but if you do you can map CC9 to the parameter of your choice in anything that supports MIDI learn (and also anything that doesn’t if you’re using Midiflow). It’s fun with effects in tandem with accelerometer tilt…

I’ve been finding the Artiphon iOS app crashing quite a lot with the new firmware when I try to alter some settings; I’ll report further if it keeps happening and replicable patterns emerge.


#4

Thanks for the input, Nick. We will look into your reported stability issue and will keep everyone posted.


#5

I am new to Instrument 1 and these changes you did sound great. My Instrument 1 was updated last night but didnt know what the update did at the time. Your note off change is similar to my YouRock Midi guitar which when my hands release all notes on the fretboard all the notes shut off. Have to now try this see if that is exactly what the change does.

Note: Then if I wanted to purposely hold notes/chords when I left my hand off the fretboard on my YouRock Midi guitar, I used a sustain pedal from one of my other controller keyboards which makes me play the guitar like a piano. Makes for cool effects and different style of playing by even holding notes that are on the same string.

Thank you also for the extra cc9 controller also. Cool stuff.

I just got into exploring your Tilt and String bending last night. These features are awesome also. I am using the Instrument 1 on a PC desktop computer Windows 10.

take care,
Dave

Edited: Just played Instrument 1 tonight, The Notes off feature works great as Luke mentions. Now I have no fighting false sounds of open strings anymore. This works exactly like my other midi guitar now, but Instrument 1 has more features and with MPE that my other guitar can not do. The only thing beware of, All notes will shut off soon as your hand lifts off the fret board and will depend on the release time of the sound how it will quickly or slowly the sound shuts off. if you are planning for notes to stay on between long sounding chord changes when you lift your hand off the fret board, they will not. That is where my sustain pedal comes in handy for more control. With additional pedal control, i can strum a chord, take my hand off the fretboard, chord continues to play, and take my time to get ready to play the next chord when i want to. Kinda my own personal feature with the pedal.


#6

Thanks for the feedback, and glad you like it!

And you prompted a fun idea: you could re-map CC-9 to CC-64 (via MIDI Pipe or direct MIDI mapping in your DAW), and use the INSTRUMENT 1 knob instead of a sustain pedal. (Just keep in mind that the knob still controls the onboard volume, so use an external sound card or iPad headphone out).

Also, if you’re into the “multiple notes per string” concept, try Grid mode with a string tuning (like the Grid Guitar preset). You can tap as many notes as you like, even right next to each other on the same string.


#7

Thank you Mike. I have just barely touched the surface using Instrument 1. I havent even gotten into the other modes yet to see what Instrument 1 can really do. Thanks for the additional tips on the re mapping of CC-9. I still find the foot pedal is best and faster control for me since playing Instrument 1 with both hands being used like a guitar or maybe other modes. i guess it comes natural from my keyboard playing background.

Question to anyone:
Still trying to figure out how the pitch bending works best for me to set it to the right sound bending effect. What CC value or parameter is the pitch bending? Since I have the ROLI Searboard Rise 49, I tried Equator with Instrument 1. I see when I put pressure to the strings, Equator reacts to it, but i don’t know what control parameter it is reacting to.

take care,
Dave


#8

Continuing the discussion from INSTRUMENT 1 Firmware 1.1.20:

Thanks for the update!

I am also new and coming from a YouRock guitar. I’ve owned the Artiphon for a couple weeks and am only half way through a second battery charge.

With respect to the new firmware, the guitar is much improved. However, the suggested Kontakt jazz guitar patch, with bend enabled, seems more finicky. Alternative guitar patches from my DAW (Mixcraft 8) worked great.

The bowing feature, which I have had a few really fun sessions, is also changed. I don’t remember this from before, but now if I am pushing down (bowing) the bridge and lift my finger off a string, the open note that sounds is extremely loud. I found myself afraid to lift off any fingers for fear of accidentally triggering a loud open note, which is quite jarring.

I am so new to the instrument, I am not sure if I should be critiquing the changes, especially after only a half an hour of testing out the new firmware. I stopped playing to write this because the bowing feature seems less playable. I look forward to reading what others have to say.


#9

Hi Sumartiphon,

Welcome to the group, myself also being a former YouRock user. You seem to have similar music items that i also have. Exactly which Jazz Guitar patch were you using Pitch Bend on in Kontakt? Did you get pitch bend working with Mixcraft guitars and which ones? Would love to try the guitars you used. For one of my DAW’s, I also have Mixcraft 8.

i find with String Bending on, i really have to press down on the fretboard to get the bending and many of my kontakt patches and i have go into the editor and modify it a little for Pitch Bend control. Manuals say Instrument 1 can bend 2 semitones and only in the up direction.

I havent gotten into bowing yet, so I cant compare the before and after update changes.
Do you fingerpick or use a pick in Guitar mode with Instrument one?

take care,
Dave


#10

Hi Dave,
Thanks for the response.

Here are some answers to your questions as well as some other information that might be helpful.

"Exactly which Jazz Guitar patch were you using Pitch Bend on in Kontakt? Did you get pitch bend working with Mixcraft guitars and which ones? Would love to try the guitars you used. For one of my DAW’s, I also have Mixcraft 8"

With Kontakt, I was using the patches configured by Artiphon, one of them is called “jazz guitar.”

With Mixcraft, unfortunately I haven’t set up pitch bend yet. For the firmware update, I quickly tested out some acoustic and clean classical and jazz guitar samples.

I found a useful tutorial, made by a knowledgeable musician and sound technician, on how one might want to set up the Artiphon using Kontakt’s Rock Guitar patch, although in this video he is actually configuring a Roli Rise25 to play Hendrix’s “Hey Joe.”

“i find with String Bending on, i really have to press down on the fretboard to get the bending and many of my kontakt patches and i have go into the editor and modify it a little for Pitch Bend control. Manuals say Instrument 1 can bend 2 semitones and only in the up direction.”

For sting bends, pressing down varies with the patches, I believe it is an aftertouch signal that triggers the bend after a certain threshold has been reached, so it does take some force.

On the second day I had this instrument, I found a free VST called midiMonitor. It lets you observe what messages are being sent from the Artiphon. From what I can tell, each setting, strum, bow, slide, and tap, has its own charm, meaning it sends messages in a particular way, almost like having a midi Swiss army knife. While, bowing, the fretboard is completely cold - or at least it was before - and midi signals are only sent when the bridge is activated. The tap mode is the most expressive, you can get aftertouch values as light as 5 and as heavy as 125 (for anyone reading this who doesn’t know, midi sends data values from 0-127). On strum, Artiphon sends velocity, and the signal is very hot, for instance the lightest touch sends 105, which might be part of the reason some people have had difficulties with it. Here is a link to the Midimonitor program:

http://www.thepiz.org/plugins/?p=midiMonitor

On another note, that PC users you can’t access the Artiphon interface while using a DAW is disappointing. I am surprised there currently is no VST or ReWire support. I found some potential workarounds, although I haven’t tested them out yet, here they are:

Midi-Ox (a tool that goes way back)
http://www.midiox.com/

LoopMIDI
http://www.tobias-erichsen.de/category/loopmidi

LoopBe1 (I think this one will work and allow accessing Artiphon software and a DAW at the same time).
http://www.nerds.de/en/loopbe1.html

The reason why I haven’t explored these further is because I ordered iConnectivity’s MIDI4+. It is a $200 device that allows sharing a couple dozen midi instruments with three computers at the same time, and route 8 channels of 48khz audio as well. I am hoping to use my desktop to stream SSD stored samples to a less powerful Windows ink enabled laptop, where I will run my DAW and write music using a digital pen into Finale - my preferred method for composition. I hope it works, if not I will probably go back to trying out those tools. Here is a link to MIDI4+

https://www.iconnectivity.com/products/midi/iconnectmidi4plus/

"I havent gotten into bowing yet, so I cant compare the before and after update changes.
Do you fingerpick or use a pick in Guitar mode with Instrument one?"

I tried picking the Artiphon a little, just to test it out, but prefer to pluck with my fingers.

As a guitarist, I use all five fingers. While I can work my pinky in on the Artiphon, I find it a little too cramped to fluidly finger pick with all five fingers simultaneously, maybe this will change over time.

Using the pre-update bow method, I had a blast, for about an hour, rapidly pounding the bridge with my fingers the way a piano hammers its strings. I believe the Mixcraft patch was called “garble vox,” it has a long sustain, that allows for really fun playing. Any patch with sustain can be interesting using the bow method. Give it a shot. :blush:

All the best.


#11

Hi Sumartiphon,

Thanks for all that info/replies to my questions. I read about the instrument 1 editor for Windows not usable when a music application is open. Not sure if it was mentioned in their manual or I saw it in one of the posts here in the forum.

I think String Bending is different from Aftertouch and are two different effects. Today i had aftertouch turned off and just String Bending turned on in their editor for my guitar strum mode and i could do Pitch bending. Verify this for me to see if I am correct.

Only thing is the bending in kontakt patches is have not gotten much swing so far, and i had the kontakt wheel limits plus and minus 3 octave swings. it is getting better and still trying to find the missing link. unless it works better with MPE mode turned on. Right now i am doing everything in single MIDI channel. I will try adding that one thing they do in the RISE video is with setting up that cc-74 parameter. The Pitch Bend setup part i had already done.

Let me know how good Pitch bending works for you when you try it. If you do the Rise video steps you will be setting up your Kontakt patches for MPE multichannel midi.

Note: i had trouble using Loopeb1 with windows 10. Kept getting errors and wouldnt install right. i do have LoopMidi installed and works great with Instrument 1, and a couple of standalone music apps to then tie into my DAW as long as it is midi data. Havent used Midi-ox yet.

Far as syncing with Rewire, I have Rewired my Ableton Live 9 DAW to Mixcraft 8 Pro DAW and works great. Mixcraft 8 can only be a host using rewire at this time. The only 2 DAW’s that can be made slaves to another DAW is Ableton and FL Studio.

I also use my fingers for playing. I tried doing a pick, but strumming across the Bridge strum contacts would feel like it was a little sticky right now.

Last thing for tonight. I do have the ROLI Seaboard 49 keyboard and is an Awesome keyboard with the 5 MPE features. That is one reason i got Instrument 1 to team up and use along with the keyboard.

Good luck in your setups and your findings. We are both learning new things as we go.

take care,
Dave


#12

Hi Dave,

You are correct. String bend is the pitchwheel. It looks like once aftertouch (cc-74) reaches 100 it switches over to the pitchwheel parameter if string bend is enabled. Also, I think string bend is a little more expressive if you set aftertouch to “low” instead of the default, which is “medium.”

I tested Loopmidi; it wouldn’t let me run the Artiphon editor and a DAW together.

I almost pulled the trigger on a Seaboard Rise49 over the holidays, when it was on sale and had a $200 rebate. I’d love to have one. I’m also anxious to see what other manufacturers come up with now that MPE is all the rage, lol.

Lastly, here is a useful link to a Youtube Artiphon review, where the reviewer does some cool things in Ableton, triggering filters set to aftertouch and velocity. You can find these parts between 2:24-2:56 and 9:37-10:35.

Cheers!


#13

Hi Sumartiphon,

Thanks for the pointer to the video with Ableton.

Note: Loopmidi only works with midi devices. The Artiphon editor has no midi capabilities so it is still locked out when running Instrument 1 with an Application. No harm in trying though.

I don’t think you need aftertouch at all with the string bending of Instrument 1. I think they are 2 separate independent features. Maybe Artiphon rep can help clarify us with these two features(aftertouch vs string bending-even though both of these are when you press down on frets). Last time I tried string bending, I had aftertouch completely shut off.

I am pretty sure now that MPE is a standard, more manufacturers may add this feature to their product lines. That’s why i like instrument 1 and my ROLI keyboard. There are a few software products that are now MPE compatible. Two that i have are Equator and Strobe. Both i got free when i bought the ROLI keyboard.

I am going onto the other methods/modes to see how they work.

take care,
Dave


#14

Hi Dave and Artiphon readers,

I just wanted to let people reading this thread know that the Midi4+ did not work as I had hoped. I did find an alternative. I purchased this USB 2.0 switch.

I find I can have the Artiphon editor open on one computer and my DAW on the other and switch between them. The only catch is that when switching back to the Artiphon editor, it is best to have it in one of the first four settings (factory defaults), otherwise it is prone to crash. Sometimes it will crash anyway, but not that often (I can live with it).

The Artiphon is so much more powerful when it can be quickly edited. It is unfortunate that it doesn’t function correctly in Windows. If I hadn’t found this fix, I might have returned it, even though I love the instrument and wouldn’t want to not have it.

Also, since my last post, I’ve purchased a Roli lightpad block and received equator player for free. I love that too. Roli and Artiphon aren’t competitors as much as they are compliments. I frequently switch between them and/or play them together.

Bow = Roli slide (movement up and down the key) *it is very sensitive
Slide = Roli glide (horizontal left and right)
Press = Roli Press


#15

As predicted, the update refused to work on my iPad Pro using a USB C hub. However, plugging it into my PC and running the Artiphon software instantly allowed it to update. What surprised me was there was not one update, but several. Instead of a cumulative update, it updated one, then the next, then the next and then another one all the way up to the current.

No big deal - it worked - but it was just unexpected.

Thank you Artiphon. Now to explore the new features…

Mike