PORTLAND, Ore. Dark Fire, a new "robot guitar" based on a Les Paul guitar body, features improved automatic tuning functions plus tone technology.
Nashville-based Gibson said its Chameleon Tone Technology combines digital signal processing with single-pole (P-90), double-pole (Hummbucking) and piezoelectric (acoustic) pickups, permitting complex sonic profiles to be dialed in.
Both sonic profile software and multitrack recording software are included with the Dark Fire, as well as a Firewire-based computer interface to run a Robot Interface Pack. The interface's A/D converter digitalizes the guitar's signal, then routes it to the user's computer where Guitar Rig software sculpts the sonic character of the guitar's tone.
The guitar's master control includes a 4- x 7-pixel color LED display complemented by edge illuminated icons that prompt switching of the blend between pickups, your selection of software sculpted tone, and chosen string tuning--all of which can be simultaneously changed even during songs. A hex output that divides the signal into six separate feeds--one for each string--permits Dark Fire guitars to control outboard MIDI converters for adding synthesized sounds. An Internet connection on the host computer can download updates and new sonic software features from Gibson.
Gibson also slimmed down the size of the powered tuning heads, making them closer to normal size, and sped up the tuning time to under one second.
In early 2009, Gibson will offer an optional Bluetooth transmitter for wireless connections, as well as an upgrade kit for first-generation Robot Guitars that permits them to access Dark Fire technology.