are fake guitars going to be the new innovation?

If you’ve read plenty of this blog, you know of my disappointment with today’s music gear manufacturers and their lack of innovation.

Hell……read the previous post where the latest big innovation was to add a big knob to a pedal. oooooook.

As I was teaching music this morning, I thought about Steven Slate. He mostly makes plugins, but he is hell bent on creating absolutely accurate plugins of vintage products. Spending enormous amount of R&D in getting every last nuance as accurate as possible….and even more accurate than other people who make plugins. I mean….are they competing to see who can imitate someone else’s product & design better?

Its like two Metallica tribute band trying to outdo each other in who is most like the real Metallica. Maybe they’ll get so close to the real thing that you will mistake them for the real thing. Wheee……the real Metallica won’t have to do anything anymore.

Anyway, Slate also made a microphone which along with his software is supposed to accurately emulate many different types of vintage and highly prized microphones. For a few hundred dollars this one microphone should give you the sounds of tens of thousands of dollars of microphones.

Now his latest product is classic guitar amp and guitar speaker cabinet emulation. He has numerous examples of how its nearly impossible to notice the difference between his software and the real thing. Note: Many other companies do this, but I’m picking on Slate because he came to mind today for some reason.

So whether its Slate or one of his competitors……what’s next guys?

Getting rid of the electric guitar all together? A simple guitar without strings or the need to tune or do adjustments. With software the user can now emulate nearly every single classic electric guitar that ever was? Want your guitar to be just like Santana’s PRS? Boom. done. Wait let’s try an SRV Strat. Boom done. Nah….let’s try Slash’s Les Paul. Boom done.

That combined with the amp and speaker cabinet simulators and software effects……Hell there’s no reason to have real instruments nor real microphones nor real recording preamps nor consoles. Software will take care of it.

My question to all involved here……when will someone break the trend and create something new? Create a new product which isn’t emulating nor copying another product?

As an artist I gotta tell you…… must be really nice to run a profitable company based on copying someone else’s ideas to a T.

P.S. Its not just Slate, but many many other manufacturer’s who constantly churn out emulations. When will they innovate and create something new and sonically exciting?