MOTU Debuts ZBox Guitar Impedance Adapter

Jan 20, 2010 12:51 PM

Polls


Education Guide

Mix is gearing up to present its longstanding annual Audio Education Guide in its November 2014 issue. Want to have your school listed in the directory, or do you need to update your current directory listing? Add an image, program description, or a logo to your listing! Get your school in the Mix Education Guide 2014.

photo of MOTU ZBox

At last week's Winter NAMM show in Anaheim, Calif., MOTU announced that it is now shipping ZBox ($39.95), a guitar pickup adapter that matches the output impedance of a guitar with instrument inputs on audio interfaces or other devices.

Guitar inputs on audio interfaces, mixers, P.A. systems, wireless transmitters and other similar devices (often labeled “instrument” inputs) usually have impedance levels that differ significantly from those typically found on guitar amp inputs. This mismatch can make a guitar sound unnatural (too bright, thin and brittle). In addition, the guitar may not "feel right" while played through software- or DSP-driven amp models.

By providing the proper impedance levels, ZBox restores natural guitar tone that would otherwise be lost through a non-amp input.

"During the development of our own guitar FX software products, MOTU's number one R&D goal was accuracy: We got completely obsessed with delivering the most faithful reproduction possible of the sound and feel of the amps, cabinets and pedals we model," says Jim Cooper, Director of Marketing at MOTU.

"We discovered a crucial factor that's impossible to model in software, because it occurs at the input stage, long before the guitar's signal even reaches any software processing: mismatched impedance levels between the guitar and the input. This mismatch not only affects the guitar tone, it has a negative impact on how the guitar plays: it just feels strange...not quite right. So, we developed ZBox to faithfully replicate the impedance levels found on classic guitar amps. We found the resulting feel and guitar tones to be subtly, yet dramatically more realistic, even with third-party guitar tone products from Waves, Native Instruments, Line 6, IK Multimedia and other developers."

ZBox is designed with authentic matching circuits that emulate the two-jack switching network found on many classic amplifiers, complete with analog simulation of the input tube grid. This unique approach delivers the most authentic amplifier impedance matching available for the absolute truest sound and “feel” from a guitar.

To use ZBox, plug a guitar into ZBox’s lo-Z or hi-Z input (whichever sounds better) and plug the ZBox's built-in, 16-inch cable with ¼-inch jack into the guitar input on the destination device. MOTU states that ZBox is suitable for use with any device that has an "instrument" or preamp input for a guitar, such as audio interfaces, mixers, recording devices, wireless transmitters, P.A. systems and effects processors. ZBox is not a computer interface and does not require any software drivers. It does not require a power source or extra cables—only the cable from the guitar.

ZBox is housed in a small (1x1.75x2.5), lightweight, virtually indestructible aluminum housing that can be conveniently fastened to a guitar strap with Velcro or duct tape for live performance through a wireless transmitter.

Find our more about MOTU's new ZBox guitar impedance adapter.






Acceptable Use Policy
blog comments powered by Disqus

Mix Books

Modern Recording and Mixing

This 2-DVD set will show you how the best in the music industry set up a studio to make world-class records. Regardless of what gear you are using, the information you'll find here will allow you to take advantage of decades of expert knowledge. Order now $39.95

Mastering Cubase 4

Electronic Musician magazine and Thomson Course Technology PTR have joined forces again to create the second volume in their Personal Studio Series, Mastering Steinberg's Cubase(tm). Edited and produced by the staff of Electronic Musician, this special issue is not only a must-read for users of Cubase(tm) software, but it also delivers essential information for anyone recording/producing music in a personal-studio. Order now $12.95

Newsletters

MixLine

Delivered straight to your inbox every other week, MixLine takes you straight into the studio, with new product announcements, industry news, upcoming events, recent recording/post projects and much more. Click here to read the latest edition; sign up here.

MixLine Live

Delivered straight to your inbox every other week, MixLine Live takes you on the road with today's hottest tours, new sound reinforcement professional products, recent installs, industry news and much more. Click here to read the latest edition; sign up here.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]

The Wire, a virtual press conference offering postings of the latest gear and music news, direct from the source. Visit the The Wire for the latest press postings.