Any Axon MIDI Guitar Users Out There?

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Hypomixolydian
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Any Axon MIDI Guitar Users Out There?

Post by Hypomixolydian » Mon Aug 27, 2007 2:50 pm

Hello,

As the thread says, any Axon MIDI guitar users out there? I would like to buy one, either - the Axon AX 100 or the AX 50 USB. Seeing I am a guitar player and a crap keyboard player, it's about time I did. I have read favourable AX 50 reviews but nothing on the AX 100. Anyone out there with some useful information on both units would be much appreciated. Basically, do they perform the same? Is one better? How good can it get the job done? My playing style is in the Vai/Satriani vein. I should point out that it is not possible for me to go into a shop and try as none around my area have them.


Thanks
Last edited by Hypomixolydian on Tue Aug 28, 2007 8:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

Tone Deft
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Post by Tone Deft » Mon Aug 27, 2007 5:25 pm

I have the 100 and have no complaints. the 50 looks cool for the size, there's a feature or two it lacks from the 100 but not much. when I got my axon I set it up and haven't messed with it in months, it just works. it's GREAT to play synth sounds with it, it's a different beast than regular guitar playing but I can definitely 'compose' music with much less thought than poking at keys.

I'd highly recommend piezo pickups over the magnetic type. GREAT fun, I was playing the latest puremagnetik operator patches over the weekend, tasty!!
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Hypomixolydian
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Post by Hypomixolydian » Mon Aug 27, 2007 7:10 pm

Thanks for the response Tone Deft. Could it handle reasonably well fastish lead work well enough?

exaltron
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Post by exaltron » Mon Aug 27, 2007 7:57 pm

I have an AX-100 (number 2) and have had quite the love-hate relationship. I got my first one on ebay that I loved for about a year until it apparently fried/died, I brought it to one of their authorized techs (since it was off warranty), who told me it was not worth trying to recover. "It's a doorstop".

Yet I loved the response of this thing so much I went right out and bought a brand-new one. Not even a year later this one died. I call Axon and get the runaround vis-a-vis honoring my warranty because somehow I had gotten a brand-new unit with NO SERIAL NUMBER on the back. The guy at Axon was convinced that I was trying to scam them (I made the mistake of telling him I had an earlier model that I had bought on ebay- guess he pegged me as some sort of idiot-savant scam artist..). In the end they agreed to fix it for $100 after much ranting and raving on my part. They said it had a huge crack in the motherboard or something which made little sense since I had only gigged 4 or 5 times with the thing and never abused it.

That was about two years ago and I haven't had any problems since, oh, except that it doesn't seem to save certain settings any longer (string mode "common" is what I need to get chords to sound right in Logic). I find there is a huge amount to do in terms of soft-synths that is infinitely more rewarding than getting inside the module and trying to set-up fret and string programs. I have never had any desire to do so despite being somewhat of a tinkerer.

I can't comment on the AX50, but if it tracks the same as the AX100 without all the needless extras, I would go back in time get the AX50 if I could. I've never understood why the interface had to be this huge piece of rack gear.

Good luck, I'll see if I can find any good mp3s of the guitar-synth stuff I've done if you want to hear it.
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exaltron
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Post by exaltron » Mon Aug 27, 2007 8:00 pm

Astral Fridge Magnet wrote:Thanks for the response Tone Deft. Could it handle reasonably well fastish lead work well enough?
Oh, ps, yes this thing can handle pretty blazing fast lead stuff amazingly well. You will probably have to play around a bit with the global settings, especially sensitivity, to match your guitar and playing style, but once you get that sweet spot, this thing will pick up just about every nuance of your playing style- bends, fret slides, hammer-ons, tapping, even whammy stuff.
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Tone Deft
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Post by Tone Deft » Mon Aug 27, 2007 8:50 pm

you have to learn to play in a different style, slop doesn't cut it. crisp, determined, fretted notes get the cleanest results. it is really cool playing synths with it and with vsts like pianos it feels amazing to play an instrument that's 100% dead on in tune, no bends, no 'nearly in tune' up and down the fretboard.

last night I was playing with harmonics and percussive strikes to the strings, it gives a super short loud note that sounds cool with some synths (puremagnetik leads from their latest operator freebie.)

I also have the mk2, if it were to break I'd replace it without hesitation, maybe for the AX50.
"Obsession is a great substitute for talent." - Steve Martin on learning the banjo

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Hypomixolydian
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Post by Hypomixolydian » Tue Aug 28, 2007 8:18 am

Tone Deft wrote:
I'd highly recommend piezo pickups over the magnetic type. GREAT fun, I was playing the latest puremagnetik operator patches over the weekend, tasty!!
Sorry to bother you again with this. I am not clear about what you are saying regarding Piezo pickups. Do they have more influence more on the output of the guitar (from the guitar jack into the amp) rather than the triggering of MIDI data?

I only intend to use the Axon unit to trigger MIDI data using my guitar and not worry about the actual sound from the guitar itself. Finally, which pickup do you recommend? The Roland or Terratec ones?

Thanks.

Homebelly
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Post by Homebelly » Tue Aug 28, 2007 8:30 am

Astral Fridge Magnet wrote:
Tone Deft wrote:
I'd highly recommend piezo pickups over the magnetic type. GREAT fun, I was playing the latest puremagnetik operator patches over the weekend, tasty!!
Sorry to bother you again with this. I am not clear about what you are saying regarding Piezo pickups. Do they have more influence more on the output of the guitar (from the guitar jack into the amp) rather than the triggering of MIDI data?

I only intend to use the Axon unit to trigger MIDI data using my guitar and not worry about the actual sound from the guitar itself. Finally, which pickup do you recommend? The Roland or Terratec ones?

Thanks.
The piezo pickups for midi guitar are hexotonic,, there is one under each string,, the vibration of the string against the pick up is translated into midi data,, They work better in so far as there is less latency due to the actual physical contact between the string and the pickup,, they also track better as they are less prone to picking up out side vibrations in the same way as a magnetic pickup might. One draw back thought can be that if you have a very resonant guitar they might pick up those vibrations and see them as notes,, all synth guitars require very sharp and precise fretting and picking technique, the piezo pickups are usually a little more forgiving in this regard,,
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Tarekith
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Post by Tarekith » Tue Aug 28, 2007 11:16 am

Been wanting one of these for ages, you guys are making it hard to resist!

old school user
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Post by old school user » Tue Aug 28, 2007 5:55 pm

Just got the Axon 50 and was skeptical, but not any more. It tracks much better than my Roland Gr-33. I esp notice way fewer false triggers, almost none.

Also, the editor works fine, with the caveat that there is no sounds to reference while tweaking patches within the editor. But I can have Live or a standalone instrument open while tweaking. I'm a happy camper.

I've been messing with midi guitar since the beginning, had an old Casio with built in midi. Nice to have something reasonably functional without all the false triggers, lack of senstivity.

kimyo
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Post by kimyo » Wed Aug 29, 2007 6:09 am

i had a friend's axon for a few months, loved it.

apparently, tho, the roland vg-99 has midi out, i'd seriously give that a look.

coolo thing to do: control vocoder pitch via guitar/axon, run vocal loops through same, play human voices with your guitar.....

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