Interface recommendations for use with separate strings?

yes, that is the system.
Something a bit funny here: the modding of harmonics you can hear in many of the examples of that system sound a lot like Deep Expressor / Deep EQ in MG2. That is what you get when messing with the harmonics :wink:
My doubt is whether that VO system can do sustaining without the harmonic colorisation.

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well if you do dust off that project with sustaining hex pickups let us know! seems like something that might be ultra cool for MG3 and just in general

I’ve given up on all hardware experiments, I only do software nowadays (PD Space Guitar etc…)


Your doubt is well-founded @Paul, this is the worst kind of shitshow of a setup I have tried so far. Crazy amount of interference and totally unpredictable! :joy:


haha, yes, I can imagine! that is one big heap of interfering stuff going on there, and the feedback circuitry of the moog guitar is via electromagnetic fields, which might interfere with the magnetic GK2/3
mcMillen worked on a mechanical sustainer, that should work better in that regard: it sustains by applying small pulses in the longitudinal direction. that way no magnetix field is needed on the string itself to activate it.

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I don’t know if it is better or worse, but I have the GraphTech Ghost Hexpander tech in my Moog. It shouldn’t be as sensitive to electromagnetic fields, but it picks up and translates everything else, and I mean everything. So I haven’t really used these two aspects in combination. The sustain concept is interesting in itself, and I had some hope of having this as my go-to weapon of choice at some time, but if for nothing else the weight alone makes it uninteresting.

I had not seen those McMillen projects - supercool stuff. Do you know how far along he is with those? Fretscanning is a really interesting idea too.

Hi Coggins, I did get your email, but the wording was truncated and looked like spam to me. I get a lot of brief phishing emails btw. Sorry about that, and please email me again. :sunglasses:




Hi Bolt,

A budget Behringer UMC1820 is good enough for separate strings Behringer | Product | UMC1820 The audio is not great and the harmonic distortion is around -85dB, while more expensive daw interface the THD the is over -100dB. Having said that, the Behringer 1820 line-inputs offer a lot of gain, and sound very good with breakout cable separate strings.


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the 1820 is a good alternative for a small budget and if you don’t want top-of-the-range quality.
The sound is very acceptable for the price.

Inputs are not only line-type, but also switchable to HI-Z which allows the use of guitars or other instruments.

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Looks like the MOTU 8pre can be quite a bit cheaper second hand than the Behringer UMC1820! They both look like good options though for sure! Or maybe their prices are actually comparable if you get the MOTU 8pre USB version. Guess there might be differences from the firewire? I’ll do some research!

Nowadays, Firewire isn’t used much on computers, and USB has long since caught up.
This poses a problem if your machine is not equipped with firewire from the outset.

Certain computers can not be upgraded to support FireWire. If your computer is a laptop and does not have a Cardbus, PCMCIA, or ExpressCard slot, there is no way to add FireWire to the system. If your computer is a desktop but does not have any available PCI or PCI Express slots, you would not be able to add FireWire without removing another device.

I actually do have Firewire! Not that I’ve ever used it! There is a converter for Firewire to USB I believe also?

If your machine is equipped with a firewire port, you could indeed go for a second-hand Motu 8pre, which will cost about the same as a new UMC1820. Being sure that the drivers are still updated.

USB and Firewire are different technologies not compatible, a simple cable is not enough, it needs using a dedicated converter device.
Maybe these cables work on Macs but not on PCs for audio interfaces.
I was given two (regular and mini) because they didn’t work: one works perfectly for me with a Sony camcorder for data transfer but no way to use the second one with an audio device.

Moreover I learned that it could damage a computer: if you use a device with a 6-pin plug and connect it to a USB device with an adapter cable, it may try to draw the power expected from a FireWire port (typically 7 to 8 W at a voltage of at least 12 V), which could burn out the controller.
Be extremely careful with this kind of product.

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Bill, sorry for the delay, just back from vacation.

I’ll email again with contact info, was just looking for pricing and availability on a 2024Q1 purchase.

Glad to hear back from you.

Hi Coggins, Thanks for the email, and responded a few hours ago. Please feel free to share the email details with the forum.

@ Bolt
Be careful with those converters. Firewire can not be converted to USB for audio interface purposes (only for video applications). It’s a shame that firewire died a quick and silent death. I still have a Yamaha N12 digital mixer, fully functional and in excellent condition, that I can not connect to any of my computers, neither PC nor Mac. Even installing a Card doesn’t help since the drivers are outdated and not supported by current OS’s. If you buy a firewire device make sure that you get working drivers with it, or having a suitable “old” OS, otherwise don’t buy it.

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Thank you both there for suggesting not to use the firewire converters! As I said, I do have a firewire port (which lights up), so may end up seeing if I can it working first!

Just bare in mind that most firewire audi drivers out there are only supported by 32bit operating systems. If you run an older win version all would be fine. The problem is not the card. Please let us know what you finally decide and how it works out.

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Well, I decided to go with MOTU 8Pre USB, as I decided it was probably a better long term investment to go with USB over firewire. I’ve had my computer for probably 15+ years and I’m sure I’ll need to upgrade eventually even if its just when I need to finally upgrade to Windows 11! Thank you for the help on this all!

Cycfi also has a polyphonic sustaining guitar and maybe a polyphonic sustaining pickup, if theres enough interest, in the works! Exciting stuff!

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