There are a lot of people out there talking about the new Gibson Robot Guitar. If you’re unfamiliar with this guitar let me tell you a little bit about it. The Robot Guitar is essentially a Gibson Les Paul Studio model. From a distance it looks just like a plain old Les Paul. From the front, the only thing that really looks different is one of the tone knobs. Once you take a closer look you’ll notice that the tuners look normal from the front but from the rear they’re bigger. That’s because each tuner has its own motor that will tighten or loosen the strings automatically. What’s surprising is the tuners don’t actually weigh any more than a standard tuner. They’re controlled by a pair of CPU’s that are connected to tuning sensors built into the bridge. All these components work together to automatically tune the Gibson Robot Guitar.
Gibson Robot Guitar
It’s easy to see how nice it is to have a guitar that will tune itself. You just strum the strings a few times and the automatic tuners bring the guitar in tune! How cool is that? There have been a lot of times at a gig in the middle of a 45 minute set that my guitar will go out of tune a bit. So I’ll have to either slow the show down between songs an re-tune or try and hurry to get my guitar in tune during a break in the music. With the robot guitar you just push a button, strum a few times and you’re back in tune.
The Gibson Robot Guitar also features several programmed alternate tunings. Allowing you to re-tune the guitar in a different tuning simply by selecting the tuning, pressing a button and letting the guitar tune itself. The tuning system is also programmable which allows you to create and store your own custom guitar tunings. That’s a very big feature because you can make the guitar truly individual.
One of the nicest things about the automatic tuning system is the intonation mode. By putting the system in this mode you can intonate your guitar strings. It even tells you which direction and how many turns to turn the bridge-piece screw to get your guitar intonated. That can really save you some time.
Another great feature is the Neutrik Cable Jack. You just plug a standard guitar cable into it. The Nuetrik jack is made from high-grade thermoplastics and housed in a rugged die cast nickel shell. Inside the jack, a retention spring ensures optimum grip on the guitar cable. That makes it so you can’t inadvertently pull the cable out of the guitar. It’s a really nice feature and an added bonus on this guitar.
If you’re like me, you can be really picky about your instrument being perfectly in tune. To that end you can tune the guitar manually by pulling out on the tuning knobs to engage manual tuning. If you’re in the studio and you need your instrument perfectly in tune then this is how you’d do it. The automatic system will get you to within 2.5 cents of perfect which in a live setting will be acceptable most of the time. You can run into problems when on string is +2.5 cents and the next is -2.5 cents and that is a noticeable difference. Again, it’s a simple matter to manually tune but it does kind of take some of the auto out of automatic.
Overall though, the plus’s outweigh the minus’s on the Robot guitar especially in a live setting. The guitar sounds great and you’re backed up by Gibson’s excellent warranty. You owe it to yourself to check this guitar out.