TabStrummer programmable MIDI guitar works like a keyboard

Posted on Dec 20 2011 - 12:14pm by Robert

If you’ve got love for guitars and guitar playing, but are having problems with music theory and memorizing chords, a device has been developed just for you. The TabStrummer is a new guitar-shaped electronic device that lets you program chords by pressing buttons on the electronic guitar’s neck and be played by strumming, just like what you do on a real guitar.

This impressive new device is great for starters, as they would be introduced to playing anything by reading tabs (though well-trained musicians don’t approve of this).

“Tab + Strummer = TabStrummer. Tab or guitar tablature refers to a system of writing guitar chords easily and visually,” according to the device’s website. “The guitar having 6 strings; EADGBe, a guitar tab is a 6 digit combination of numbers and letter X which corresponds to a muted string. Each digit corresponds to each fret of particular string on the guitar.”

This audio device is built around an Atmel microcontroller and it features a MIDI (digital) output and a line out.  The audio out jack enables you to plug the device to your headphones, speakers or your TV’s input, and it also features an add-on MIDI sound shield from Sparkfun Electronics.

The Tabstrummer also has strings made of PCB traces and are touch sensitive. The strings are spread out so that users can pluck individual strings.

The device’s creators are considering releasing it commercially, so head to the TabStrummer website and let the creators hear your thoughts.

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