Thomann's Cool Online Guides: MIDI and Modelling Guitars

6. Modelling Guitars

Modelling guitars and basses are instruments whose sound is produced by integrated electronics, not the acoustic or electrical properties of the instrument itself. Synth sounds usually play little or no role here; these instruments are concerned with simulating the sounds of important guitar models such as the Les Paul, Strat and Tele (even offering several versions/vintages of each) as well as additional sounds such as acoustic guitars, banjo and twelve-string.

A modelling guitar is not a MIDI guitar. Modelling guitars output the sound of a guitar from a regular jack socket, not signals that need to be converted by a guitar processor. The output from a modelling guitar may be connected directly to a guitar amp, while the output of the pickup of a MIDI guitar controller must be connected to a guitar processor or synth.

The leading company in the field of modelling guitars is Line 6, a California-based company which has pioneered the use of digital modelling technology in guitars, amplifiers and FX processors. Their first modelling amplifier was patented in 1996. Their Variax line of modelling guitars has become popular with guitarists; an easy way to spot a Variax guitar is that it has no visible conventional pickups. The Variax features many guitar sounds and familiar controls, and uses hexaphonic piezo pickups, so each string is individually processed. One benefit of this is that since each string is modelled separately, tunings may be switched instantaneously via footswitch. These guitars feature a digital output along with the standard quarter-inch jack, allowing direct connection to Line 6 amps or pedals, so that presets can be changed across all units with one button press. These instruments need power, either using internal batteries from a Line 6 amp or pedal board.

Variax acoustic modelling guitars are available in both steel- and nylon-strung versions and offer various features across the range including an integrated tuner, reverb, chorus, alternative tunings and models of rare and expensive instruments such as 12-string acoustics, sitar, shamisen and dobro. When using the alternate tunings, remember to set your amplified signal loud enough to mask the sound you hear from the guitar itself. These weight and feel of these guitars weigh is close to a solid body guitar. Because the cavity is smaller, they don’t produce a lot of acoustic volume, so while they may be perfectly suited for the stage or studio, they may not work as well at around a campfire.

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in online competitions

Note: Participation in an online competition runs independently from any purchase at Thomann GmbH. The following Competition Rules apply when participating in any online competition run by Musikhaus Thomann:

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MIDI and Modelling Guitars overview

Dante AVIO Analog Output Adapter 0x2 C.Giant LP-6210C Black Electro Harmonix Oceans 11 Reverb Steinberg UR-RT2 Presonus Studio One 4 Pro UG Prof/Prod Vic Firth SIH2 Roland TM-6 Pro Drum Trigger Module TritonAudio FetHead Fender SQ J.Mascis Jazzmaster 2018 Dante AVIO Analog Input Adapter 2x0 Marshall Major III Bluetooth Black Harley Benton TE-7 FanFret FBB 2018 DLX
Recommended
Dante AVIO Analog Output Adapter 0x2

Y Adapter Enables the output of analogue audio line signals from a Dante network, RJ45 Metal plug with built-in LEDs, 2 XLR male outputs, 96 KHz / 24 bit, Robust housing for day-to-day tasks while touring, Fully functional Dante...

to the product
€163
Recommended
C.Giant LP-6210C Black

Keyboard 61 Keys with touch dynamics, 162 Sounds, 200 Rhythms, 61 Percussion effects, 50 Demo songs, Fill-in, sync and rhythms variations, Split function, Chord, Recording, Pitch bend wheel, Microphone input, Line out sockets, Headphone output, Sustain pedal connection, USB...

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€66
Recommended
Electro Harmonix Oceans 11 Reverb

Electro Harmonix Oceans 11 Reverb, effects pedal, 11 different reverb types: HALL, SPRING, PLATE, REVRS, ECHO, TREM, MOD, DYNA, AUTO-INF, SHIM and POLY, Tails switch: Select whether the reverb fades out naturally or stops immediately when the pedal is switched...

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€149
Recommended
Steinberg UR-RT2

4x 2 USB 2.0 Audio Interface Up to 24-bit/192 kHz, 2 Class-A D-PRE microphone preamps with + 48 V phantom power, Rupert Neve Designs transformer switchable on each front input channel, 2 Analog XLR/jack combo inputs plus 2 line...

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€311
Recommended
Presonus Studio One 4 Pro UG Prof/Prod

Audio MIDI Sequencer (DAW) (download) Upgrade from Presonus Studio One Professional 1-3 / Producer 2 to Studio One 4 Professional Sleek single-window philosophy, Consistent drag-and-drop functionality throughout, Project page allows integrated mastering with DDP export, Redbook...

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€145
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Recommended
Vic Firth SIH2

Vic Firth SIH2 isolation headphones, (reduces overall noise levels by 25 dB). successor of the legendary Vic Firth SIH-1 headphones, features redesigned larger driver in the ear cups that deliver a more powerful low end, cleaner mids and clear highs...

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€79
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Recommended
Roland TM-6 Pro Drum Trigger Module

Trigger Module For acoustic drummers who want to extend the sound possibilities of their drums with electronic sounds, 500 one-shot sounds, 268 V-Drum sounds, 80 Drum kits, SDHC card slot for importing your own samples, 6x 6.3 mm stereo...

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€789
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Recommended
TritonAudio FetHead

TritonAudio FetHead, in-line microphone preamplifier, XLR 3-pole female XLR 3-pole male, ultra low noise Class A JFet amplifier, 27dB amplification (@3 KOhm load), 4 matched JFets, 24-48V Phantom Power required, for Ribbon & Dynamic microphones, shields phantom power from...

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€66
Recommended
Fender SQ J.Mascis Jazzmaster 2018

Electric Guitar J.Mascis (Dinosaur Jr.) Artist Model, Body: Basswood, Neck: Maple, Fretboard: Indian Laurel, Neck profile: C, 21 Jumbo frets, Nut width: 42.5 mm, Scale: 648 mm, Pickups: 2 Jazzmaster single coils, Adjusto-Matic bridge with vintage style floating tremolo,...

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€477
Recommended
Dante AVIO Analog Input Adapter 2x0

Dante AVIO Analog Input Adapter 2x0; converts analog audio line signals to feed any Dante-connected system; 96 kHz / 24 Bit; fully-functional Dante interface; adjustable signal levels: +24dBu / +4dBu / 0dBu/ 0dBV /-10dBV (through Dante Controller); frequency Response: 20Hz...

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€163
Recommended
Marshall Major III Bluetooth Black

Marshall Major III Bluetooth Black stereo headphones, on-ear design, closed back, foldable, Bluetooth® aptX Technology, up to 30 h running time, control knob on headphone, 40 mm moving coil dynamic speaker, newly constructed hinges and headband for a better fitting,...

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€135
Recommended
Harley Benton TE-7 FanFret FBB 2018 DLX

Harley Benton"TE-7 FanFret FBB 2018 DLX, 7-string Fanned Fret electric guitar, TE-Style with reversed headstock, body: ash, top: Flame Maple, neck: 5-ply maple/nato neck, neck mount: bolt on, neck form: Modern C-Profil, fingerboard: Roseacer, inlays: offset DOT inlays, 24 fanned...

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€298
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