Guitar? Bass? Piano? Artiphon’s Instrument 1 is all of those and then some

Whether you simply aspire to one day play an instrument or you’re already a seasoned musician, chances are good you are going to want the device you are about to see.

Artiphon’s Instrument 1 is a touch-sensitive controller which outputs sounds akin to the guitar, piano, violin, bass, or pretty much anything else you want. Frankly, there’s nothing else quite like it in the world, and it could very well change electronic instruments for good.

The Instrument 1 debuted with a boom this week, as Nashville, TN-based tech company Antiphon’s Kickstarter for Instrument 1 met its funding target on Tuesday, the day it launched: over $80,000 in just six hours. At press time, 684 backers have pledged over $250,000.

The device itself is pretty unassuming, just a fret board with a ‘head’ and a ‘body’ consisting of a bridge, speaker, volume knob and instrument presets. Its ease of use and customizability have quickly made it a hot commodity, though.

“Our goal is to create the most effortless music-making experience at any skill level,” the company explained in a statement. “Tune it all to E-major if you like, adjust the sensitivity and let it auto-play the notes you press.”

It can be played in seemingly any way: on your lap if you’re a piano maestro; resting on your thigh if you’re a guitar shredder; or on your shoulder if you’re a violinist. And it’s not just a silly toy. It plays the notes you hit, strum, or bow so it’ll only sound good if you do. (It also has a beginner mode where it can auto-play notes.)

The device comes with a companion app which gives users the ability to customize the instrument, including choosing the mode (fretted strings, fretless strings, 6×12 grid or 12 pads), method, tuning and sound. Its digital strings are particularly innovative, as they’re pressure-sensitive to allow for vibrato, multiple notes per string and capo buttons to change tunings.

The starting price for the Artiphon Instrument 1, which comes in white and black, is $349. They can be ordered via Artiphon’s Kickstarter and expect to ship at the beginning of 2016.

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