Where to start with a “simple” synth live rig

Started by guitarmanjon, January 02, 2024, 11:16:50 AM

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guitarmanjon

Hello
Long time lurker, but now in need of a little advice.

I've recently joined a covers band as the lead guitarist. There are some songs that would benefit from a little synth and/or other instruments (brass, strings, etc) and I'm looking for the simplest way to achieve this. I also want to have a play with the synth guitar world as it intrigues me and looks like a lot of fun.

I'm using a Headrush straight to PA for my guitar signal chain. I'd like to be able to "turn on" or mix the synth sounds with my feet, via the Gigboard if possible.

Things I've considered:
* Boss SY-1 or SY-200 in the effects loop - I can turn the loop on/off and adjust the mix with an expression pedal. But I'm not convinced by the brass, strings, piano, etc capability of these pedals.
* Boss SY-1000 - this could potentially do the synth thing as well as my guitar/amp rigs. But it's a ~£900 investment.
* Boss GM-800 - does the synth thing very well by all accounts and could integrate into my current rig. But again, ~£900 investment.
* Fishman Triple Play - I'd want to run this through my iPad for the cleanest live set up. But I can't figure out how I would be able to control the mix of guitar to FTP via my Gigboard as the iPad audio would have to go via the Aux In, whose volume cannot be controlled by an expression pedal.
* An older Roland / Boss 13-pin board. Could integrate into my current rig but makes it all quite big on the floor.
* Other synth pedals that just use the guitar input. Again, fine for the synth tones but not great for other instruments.

I was leaning towards the FTP, as it comes at a nice price for what seems like a lot of functionality, but I'd want to have some control over its volume/mix at my feet.

Any tips on what I could do with the FTP or if there are any other (simple?) options I've missed.

Many thanks
Jon

gumtown

Look up the Roland GR-20, does the synth sounds you require, is compact, cheap if you can find a good used one, can integrate with your existing pedalboard with guitar mix features.

The SY series will not do PCM ROM sample sounds like piano.
Free "GR-55 FloorBoard" editor software from https://sourceforge.net/projects/grfloorboard/

arkieboy

https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/roland-gr20-guitar-synthesizer

I agree with gumtown. Perfect way to dip a foot in the water, unless you can work out how to integrate the Fishman.  Even then, as an unfussy gig-ready solution the GR-20 is still is worth serious consideration.
Main rig: Barden Hexacaster and Brian Moore i2.13 controllers
Boss SY1000/Boss GKC-AD/Boss GM-800/Laney LFR112

Other relevant gear: Line 6 Helix LT, Roland GR-33, Axon AX100 MkII
Oberheim Matrix 6R, Supernova IIR, EMu E5000, Apple Mainstage, Apple Logic, MOTU M4

guitarmanjon

Thanks for the replies. The GR-20 does look like it'd do what I want. I'll see if I can find one. Looks like my local shop has had them in as second hand items but none at the moment.

SY.Borg.300

Simple synth rig? That's like asking how to do simple brain surgery.

Elantric

#5

Brak(E)man

#6
Quote from: guitarmanjon on January 02, 2024, 11:45:24 PMThanks for the replies. The GR-20 does look like it'd do what I want. I'll see if I can find one. Looks like my local shop has had them in as second hand items but none at the moment.

The gr20 or another gr are probably the easiest, sturdiest and most reliable for what you're looking for.
There's a gr33 not far from Sheffield

It's what I'd recommend checking out.

https://reverb.com/en-se/item/76623591-roland-gr-33-2000s-black

Quote from: guitarmanjon on January 02, 2024, 11:16:50 AMI was leaning towards the FTP, as it comes at a nice price for what seems like a lot of functionality, but I'd want to have some control over its volume/mix at my feet.

Any tips on what I could do with the FTP or if there are any other (simple?) options I've missed.


For ftp volume control just stick a stereo volume pedal before the aux in.

(BUT I use an iPad live and they do tend to crash at times in my experience.
The way I'm using it , it's not a big issue,  but playing synths it's not a route I'd take.)
swimming with a hole in my body

I play Country music too, I'm just not sure which country it's from...

"The only thing worse than a guitar is a guitarist!"
- Lydia Lunch

guitarmanjon

Well...after a lot of looking, thinking and watching many videos, I decided to go all in and got a GM-800. Sold a couple of bits of rarely used gear to fund it. Excited doesn't cut it.