mini review- MadCatz Fender Mustang MIDI & game controller

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nix808
KVRAF
4286 posts since 22 Jul, 2006 from Tasmania, Australia

Post Fri May 15, 2020 9:03 am

Hiya-
what with the pandemic,
my package of the Fender MadCatz Rock Band 3 Mustang
took 6 weeks to get here, but it arrived this morning,
and I tried it today.
For me Rock Band 3 seemed to make my timing worse the one time I played it years ago-
the Mustang controller is all about MIDI in my studio.

To emphasise that there is one almost showstopping behaviour of the controller.
In strum mode, the only way to make a note off is depress a fret button
default out of the box. The string triggers do never send note offs.
Thus you get open notes hanging something chronic.
I made a little script that plays an open note for 1.5 sec and this really kicks ass
It plays really cool now, really doing that made it fine
-so it has that neat mechanical behaviour a button controller should.

The strings feel so cool, really nice work on their feel.
The buttons are awkward some, it's the first button guitar I have played though.
The lack of fret dots is troublesome, maybe I will have to do something with paint I guess

The build is extremely fine for plastic, but the dinky thing doesn't have much cool factor.
The fit for the neck is splendid thing.

So 4/5 stars from me, because I was dismayed at first with the hanging notes,
I thought it was a broken unit. The Ruby script fixed my problem though,
so I am very happy with it this evening.

In the script I decided to do these things-
-block the constant pinging
-change it to send on channel 1 alone
-make open notes mute after 1.5 sec
-give it a panic button
-shift pitch

I'm happy to field any questions u have about these cheap and available toy-like but capable controllers. I am only using it in strum mode, but some peeps will like the synth mode,
which is like tapping and uses only the buttons, no strings.

<small edit> There are 102 buttons, 17 frets, so a little limiting there-
but they really r cheap, as 102 of the things is a hefty number though

CapnLockheed
KVRAF
2387 posts since 12 Mar, 2002 from Central NY

Post Sun May 24, 2020 10:53 am

I had one and re-sold it pretty quick. I found the Yamaha EZ-AG was a similar but much more capable controller. But it had it's own drawbacks as well. I sold it too. Now I just stick with a Fishman Triple Play for MIDI conversion and still use my old Roland GK-3/VG-88V2 for COSM processing....alternative tunings, hex effects and such.
the secrets to old age: Faster horses, Richer Women, Bigger CPU's

https://soundcloud.com/cristofe-chabot/sets/main

User avatar
nix808
KVRAF
4286 posts since 22 Jul, 2006 from Tasmania, Australia

Post Mon May 25, 2020 2:17 pm

CapnLockheed wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 10:53 am
1.the Yamaha EZ-AG was a similar but much more capable controller
2. it had it's own drawbacks as well
3.Now I just stick with a Fishman Triple Play for MIDI conversion
thanks for the communique!
I thought i'd ask a few questions. MIDI guitar is prolly my biggest passion,
and being more informed is desirable to me
1. how so?
2. I'm not hugely considering it, there is another Yammie I am though(the G-10).
What was no dice for you with it ez-ag?
3. Is the Fishman basically perfect? Never had the opportunity to try it-
I mean in relation to always playing the correct note, it's latency sounds workable

nJoy the tek!

CapnLockheed
KVRAF
2387 posts since 12 Mar, 2002 from Central NY

Post Tue May 26, 2020 11:41 am

Ok......

1) It's been a while but, as I recall, the string sensors could be turned on/off allowing you to play it in either guitar mode or more like a keyboard with just the buttons. There were still some hung note problems with the Yammie but not as bad as either the MadCatz or YouRock controllers. The other thing is, I prefer to blend in REAL guitar sounds with synth sounds which is why I gravitated first to Roland then Fishman.

2) The G-1 is HORRID!! Aside from the fact that it looks like a portable vacuum cleaner, it uses 6 strings of the same gauge tuned to the same pitch. I've played a couple of them and just could not get used to the "feel". Same thing with the Casio DG-20....which feels even worse as it uses nylon strings....but, at least, that unit is self contained. No external MIDI controller box AND it has onboard sounds. Still far from ideal.

3) The Fishman Perfect? OH HELL NO!! There really is no "perfect" MIDI guitar option. BUT, that being said, I find the Fishman to be a better hex type, (like Roland), converter. Better but not perfect. You'll still need to adjust your playing style. Also like ALL MIDI guitar solutions some sounds work better than others. Pads, Strings, Organ....things with long sustain work better, Something a short attack like a piano....not so much. BTW.....the Fishman was developed by the same guy that developed the Axxon converters which were generally considered to be better than Roland's offerings. There was some development in optical converters...and one commercial product the K-Muse Photon. But it was short lived and I never found a complete system to try it. I don't know why this line of research seems to have been abandoned. Theoretically, at least, it seems that optical conversion would be faster than current hex magnetic systems.
the secrets to old age: Faster horses, Richer Women, Bigger CPU's

https://soundcloud.com/cristofe-chabot/sets/main

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