Published Nov 03, 2010In the past 50 years, electric guitar technology has remained relatively unchanged, as beloved makes like the Fender Stratocaster and Gibson Les Paul remain similar to their early designs. However, Gibson is now looking to overhaul guitar technology with the new Firebird X, which CEO Henry Juszkiewicz says is "revolutionary."
The Firebird X, which is modelled after the classic Gibson guitar of the same name, contains built-in effects that allow users to modify the sound without pedals or amp settings. "This is a new way to play. Infinite voices," AFP quotes Juszkiewicz as saying. "Literally, there are lots and lots and lots of programs in this guitar that allow you to choose the way the guitar sounds... A huge sonic arsenal."
The neck sports a robotic tuner that keeps it in pitch. There's also built-in Bluetooth technology that can communicate wirelessly with pedals or a computer. It's powered by a cellphone battery.
Incredibly, the new Firebird X only weighs six pounds (by comparison, the infamously heavy Les Paul is about nine pounds). Inside, it contains a chipboard and processors; the electronics can be replaced and updated as software and hardware continue to advance.
The guitar has one major drawback: the price. It will sell for a hefty $5,570. Currently, the guitar has a planned limited edition run of 1,800 coming out on December 11. Of course, if this experiment goes well, we could see more (and cheaper) guitars with built-in effects coming soon.
Click on the video below to see a demonstration of the guitar.