Here's an interesting new idea for a product that, on paper at least, looks like it would be pretty cool. Described by its designers as "a MIDI beat and synth sequencing tool delivering hands-on control for hobbyists and professional musicians", Groove Engine aims to bring all your MIDI and CV-capable gear together and provide a more tactile alternative to using a computer for triggering your kit. The project has recently appeared on Indiegogo.
Bring all of your gear together. The groove engine's purpose is to provide a standalone production platform for live-stream and live venue performers. Ideal for breaking from the virtual mindset of computers, sub menus and limitations of on-board sequencers on samplers and synths.
Here's a concept video of how it might work.
And here's a breakdown of the main features:
- 16-step sequencer across 16 instrument tracks
- Output any track to any MIDi channel
- 3 automation channels per track (CC / CV)
- 16 pattern slots
- 16 arrangement slots
- MIDI, CV or internal clock sync
- CV clock out
- Save / recall using SD card
- Expansion slot
Which all looks and sounds pretty cool. There's only one slight issue though - it doesn't exist yet. As you may have noticed from the promotional video, it's currently at the 3D-modelled stage and as far as we can tell a prototype doesn't yet exist. That's not the end of the world - every product starts life somewhere. But the sums involved to pledge backing to the project are quite large - $349 CAD for the basic unit, which apparently represents a discount on the eventual price of $499. Will people pledge these amounts - as much as $699 with bundled MIDI splitters and routers - without seeing a physical product?
In fairness, D&W are upfront about this, stating that the funding will go towards:
- Rework / Soldering station.
- CNC Router / Aluminum Milling machine.
- Controllers, Programmers and ICs.
- Analog Components.
- Aluminum plates.
- PCB layout.
- PCB Print outsourcing.
- Shipping Costs.
- Unforeseeable expenses
It's certainly an interesting idea - but does it tickle your fancy enough to part with some cash?
[Via Devin Taylor]