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I am really, really not a ludite when it comes to the laptop thing.

It's just that I lack the few thousand dollars to upgrade my sturdy old 
Mac laptop to the latest greatest model and all the software and 
peripherals I'd have to buy (or re-buy) as well.

Because I would also be doing lotsa graphic work on it - hey I'm a Mac 
guy making his living on the computer as well and can't afford 2 
separate machines - that financial consideration becomes a real barrier 
as well.

I'm working on a shoestring.

Then it becomes this big switch-over for ALL the software I use - and 
justifying it at tax time and convincing the spouse that it's a 
worthwhile place for our money when we're putting 2 of our 3 boys 
through college become a big bother.

Believe me, back in the early to mid '90s (when I worked for Seymour 
Duncan) I got together with some of my pals who were big-time software 
programmer/developers and we explored the possibility of doing all the 
stuff we take for granted these days as off-the-shelf Native 
Instruments and IK Multimedia software solutions.

I even worked up a GUI that had little stomp-boxes and rack stuff on it 
(modeling it after the stuff in my rack).

But the computers of the mid '90s were still not quite powerful or fast 
enough to do it right.

My little group of Santa Barbara engineers and nerds disbanded and 
moved away.

Not too many years later I found myself in Oregon doing graphics for IK 
Multimedia magazine ads as a long distance freelancer - how ironic is 

Anyhoo, I've always been a little bit "behind the curve" in terms of 
what computer hardware I can afford to buy at any time.

What I do buy (when I buy) is on the cheap - buying almost discontinued 
models before a big change just as they're fading them out and then use 
'em for 5, 6, 7 or 8 years without upgrading.

What I really want to do is do the MaxMSP/Jitter thing, but it's really 
going to be a long time before I can own the computer that will do what 
I want to do there.

For now I can afford minor purchases of used gear on Ebay and try to 
work up something that "works for me" in the fashion that I am used to 

The fact that I am really not financially all that well off and 
struggle with out-of-date equipment (on the computer side of things 
anyway) is the sad little secret of my musical and professional life.

I have the cool, fairly late model, music HARDWARE that I have because 
I make small shrewd investments in the stuff over a longer period of 
time, and then buy and sell again and trade it like a kid trading 
marbles or Pokemon cards on the schoolyard.

I also know some music company reps personally and have other 
connections that allow me to buy some things wholesale.

I have no such contacts like that on the computer side of things.

I simply have not been able to afford to migrate over, in the 
first-class way that I'd want to yet.

I have to wonder (sometimes) if it will ever happen.

But I remain hopeful.

On the other side of the coin, I have seen a lot more computer 
melt-downs at looping festivals than dedicated hardware snafus.

When a live looping lappy won't boot up on stage mysteriously (as I 
have seen all too often), or suddenly has dumped all of a performer's 
much-labored-over custom FX parameters (also seen), or stubbornly won't 
recognize their MIDI foot-controller for no particular reason 
whatsoever (ditto) . . . I have to think schlepping a little redundant 
gear (so that the show can go on) is not a terrible thing.

I guess that's where I'm at.

I'm not happy about it, but there you are.



On Jun 28, 2009, at 5:29 PM, Mark Sottilaro wrote:

> On Sun, Jun 28, 2009 at 2:21 PM, tEd  KiLLiAn<tedkillian@charter.net> 
> wrote:
>> Yeah, it's really too bad that there's no also a single-device 
>> solution for
>> a stereo amp simulator to go along with this device.
> Aren't all the flavors of Pods and the Digitech stuff and Vox boxes
> exactly this?
> Ted, I know you struggle with back issues and lugging stuff is no fun
> so I wonder why you don't look into a laptop solution.  I think you'd
> be happily surprised at the sound quality of the IK Multimedia
> modelers.  I started because I was looking for a solution for bass and
> I was blown away by the quality of Ampeg SVX (IK's Ampeg endorsed
> package) and there was a two for one at the time so I went for their
> Jimi Hendrix package.  I loved them so much I ended up getting all of
> them.  Now you can get the Stealthpedal for $199 and it comes with a
> light version of Amplitube 2 and the full Amplitube Metal.  It's a
> good deal.  That, Mobius, a host and laptop and your guitar and that
> would be all you'd need to move unless you want a second controller
> like an FCB1010 (you probably would want that as a Mobius controller)