Welcome to
the forums at bobdunsire.com
bobdunsire.com forums bobdunsire.com forums
You can reset your password by going here. Be sure to try your current email and any email addresses you may have had in the past.
Otherwise please use the Contact Us link at the bottom of the forums. In order to help you, please provide the following info: Your Display Name from the old forum and any possible email addresses you would have used before. Without that info we cannot locate your account.


Go Back   Bob Dunsire Bagpipe Forums > Great Highland Bagpipe > Technique & Instrument
Register Blogs FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Technique & Instrument Related to techniques, to the instrument, to the components, to maintenance.

Platinum Sponsors
Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 07-15-2017, 04:20 PM   #11
Pppiper
Forum Regular
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: USA
Posts: 285
Default Re: Electronic Pipes

The A-pipes look very tempting, and compared to other products, it's on the expensive side, but still quite reasonable. It MIGHT be the perfect alternative to the other electric sets I have/use.

After reading this and investigating the A-pipes site, I'm very much considering this. Please let us know if you pull the trigger, and your thoughts in using it!

I have both an older set of RedPipes (electric contacts on chanter, not optical), and an older Deger chanter. Both have their advantages in one way or another, and both drive me a little crazy in one way or another.

The RedPipes were a bit of an impulse buy on my part, and if you want to play on stage and "look" like you're playing the real thing, this is nearly as close as it gets. I also liked the idea of playing with a bag, and opening the air valve so that it takes a similar amount of air pressure as an actual set (keep my lips in shape when I can't get away from my apartment to practice).

For one thing, the air pressure settings are awkward, and no matter how much I'm fiddled with them, I can't seem to get them to feel like I'm playing a regular set (which to me, was half the point). And around the house, the drones ended up being more of a nuisance, so I pulled them off. Funny enough, I now have put reeds in the RedPipe drones, and use them for rowdy stage shows as actual highland pipe drones (since they're plastic, and actually sound pretty decent).

I never feel like using the whole thing (bag, etc), so they don't really get used compared to practice chanter and Deger. They're good for MIDI though, so I've used them in mixing some recordings in a pinch. Good as well for some stage situations, but I don't really like playing "faux pipes" in public .. nothing against them, it's just not my preference. But with rock bands, electronic music, that sort of thing ... the RedPipes solve a BUNCH of problems.

The Deger chanter is good and portable, but the dry-finger issue borders on maddening. Lick your fingers, fine .. but two tunes later, you're doing it again, and again, and again. Otherwise, I kind of love it. It's invaluable for helping to finger things by ear (since you can adjust pitch, you can pretty much play along with anything).

The Redpipes can be sent back to get the optical upgrade, but those cost me enough as it is already, and I've heard their optical chanter has trouble in certain lighting conditions. The other advantage to sending them back though would be using a chanter with actual pipe-chanter holes. We'll see.

It sounds like the A-pipes has addressed the light issue, as well as having an actual pipe chanter. And since it can be fitted into a pipe bag at will (since, lets face it .. your highland pipes will be sitting there wishing for you to play them) .. it seems to be quite perfect for practicing in silence, yet keeping the feel of things as close to how they'd be when playing normally.

Also, according to a review on the site, the A-pipes allow "bending" notes, like an actual chanter. This fact MAY have sold me.

https://www.a-pipes.com/en/feedback/john_g

Worth considering, in my view ... but everyone's needs are unique.

Cheers,
~Nate
Pppiper is offline   Reply With Quote
Gold Sponsor
Old 07-16-2017, 10:17 AM   #12
paul_111
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: IL
Posts: 38
Default Re: Electronic Pipes

I really like the Technopipes - it has allowed me to practice more than with the traditional noisemakers. It is great on a plane or at night or early morning. What drives me nuts is how sensitive the sensors are to dry fingers. Yeah, I use lotion when it is around, but sometimes it is not. Thusly, sometimes I have to put them down out of dry-finger frustration.

The poly A-pipe is currently on sale. While $340 is not cheap, if it lives up to the claims and the optical sensors work better than the Technopipe, it will be a winner.

I was toying with the eChanter on the diy forum, but it still has the dry finger issue.

I like to buy quality - it only hurts once. The ability to silently practice and get new tunes under finger is (almost) priceless.

I'll let you know if I bite...

Paul
paul_111 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2017, 04:01 PM   #13
pancelticpiper
Holy smoking keyboard!
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: WV to the OC
Posts: 9,361
Default Re: Electronic Pipes

It's interesting to hear about the various electronic things.

Myself, I've only owned the Fagerstrom, and I love it.

It's greatest use, for me, is at work and on flights. It's so compact.

I rarely have the dry finger problem. When I do I use hand lotion, just a little.

I paid around $100 for mine, used, many years ago. It's an early model. There are two problems with it, both of which I assume have been addressed on newer models:

1) the pitch adjustment maxes out at around 480, not high enough to match many modern recordings.

2) the batteries can be difficult to find (three small watch batteries). Every place in Japan had them, but on other trips I've not been able to find them anywhere.
__________________
proud Mountaineer from the Highlands of West Virginia; Son of the Revolution and Civil War; first white settlers on the Guyandotte
pancelticpiper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2017, 05:47 PM   #14
Ron Teague
Holy smoking keyboard!
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Sacramento, California
Posts: 1,247
Default Re: Electronic Pipes

I have the Fagerstrom guy. It works great in a Midi environment such as Studio Piper and Universal Piper and Garage Band ( but you need to get a MIDI adapter for it]. I almost never use it stand alone. Yes if your hands are dry you need to wet them. One could use some sort of cream but I just wash my mitts or if one finger is dry, I just lick it. Kinky but effective
__________________
Ron Teague

The Cheesy Piobaireachd Player
Ron Teague is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2017, 06:57 AM   #15
dave11
Forum Member - Shy or Quiet
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: us
Posts: 3
Default Re: Electronic Pipes

I'm leaning pretty hard on this one because of the optical pickups and actual holes in the body of the chanter. I was going to get a set of Fagerstrom technopipes, but this has pretty much the same features with the added drilled holes which I like for a "feel" that an electronic contact can't give.

So who's going to take the plunge?
dave11 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2017, 07:07 AM   #16
Pppiper
Forum Regular
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: USA
Posts: 285
Default Re: Electronic Pipes

Quote:
Originally Posted by dave11 View Post
I'm leaning pretty hard on this one because of the optical pickups and actual holes in the body of the chanter. I was going to get a set of Fagerstrom technopipes, but this has pretty much the same features with the added drilled holes which I like for a "feel" that an electronic contact can't give.

So who's going to take the plunge?
I just might do it .. it's bad timing though, as I just bought a ton of pipe books, and that ES Session chanter. Both well spent, but ... money ... (slaps forehead).

I'll drop a line if I go for it. If not now, then I definitely will in a few months.

Cheers,
~Nate
Pppiper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2017, 07:57 PM   #17
Tom MacKenzie
Holy smoking keyboard!
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 1,307
Default Re: Electronic Pipes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom MacKenzie View Post
I use Deger Pipes II ...

I am working on using the MIDI output and Audacity to see where my grace notes lie according to the beat. This is an idea I got from the Pipers Dojo. No success yet.
Success! On Windows 10 I downloaded Anvil Studio and installed it. I had to purchased a female to female MIDI plug adapter and a MIDI USB converter.

Using the MIDI attachment that comes with the Deger II, plug in the Deger MIDI jack into one end of the female to female adapter and the MIDI IN into the other end, and then plug the USB into the computer.

In Anvil Studio, I selected "Piano Roll", Time "2/4", Grid "1/32 note", and in the Track properties selected "General MIDI - Microsoft Wavetable".

I set the metronome to "66 bpm" and configured record to start the metronome when recording starts.

Press "Rec" and play the tune on the Deger II to the metronome.

Edit the track and voila! you can see all your timing mistakes. Wonderful!

Here is "Walter Douglas MBE" first part as shown in the piano roll view. My taorluath at 0:02:272 ends on the beat instead of starting on it. Must work on that.

__________________
tom.mackenzie@sympatico.ca

Last edited by Tom MacKenzie; 08-05-2017 at 08:04 PM.
Tom MacKenzie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2017, 10:30 AM   #18
paul_111
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: IL
Posts: 38
Default Re: Electronic Pipes

Quote:
Originally Posted by dave11 View Post
So who's going to take the plunge?
I did! It should be here next week.
paul_111 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2017, 12:15 PM   #19
3D Piper
Forum Clasp
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Hattiesburg, MS
Posts: 926
Default Re: Electronic Pipes

Quote:
My taorluath at 0:02:272 ends on the beat instead of starting on it. Must work on that.
It looks perfect to me!
LG-D-LG before the beat (like a grip), then the E ON the beat of the melody note (just as you would play a single E grace note). Think "Man On The Moon": man is the low a (or whatever melody note leads into it), On and The are the Low Gs, and Moon is the E grace to the next melody note.
What a great visual tool, although I'm sure a lot of people would say it is too metered and doesn't flow as we should play it.

-Matthew
3D Piper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2017, 10:18 AM   #20
Graineag
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 41
Default Re: Electronic Pipes

I don't really have anything substantive to contribute to the discussion here other than to add yet another endorsement for the Fagerstrom chanter.

I bought one from the College of Piping shop when I was living and studying in Glasgow, and it has arguably been one of the best purchases I ever made.

Since that time, I've gone for many long spells unable (or unwilling) to play my Highland pipes--living in Japan, living in small, cramped apartments, stricken with uilleann pipe fever--but the one thing that kept me from giving up the instrument was the techno-chanter. I wouldn't be playing Highland pipes today without it.

I once accidentally left it in a sweatshirt pocket and my wife put it through the washing machine--it survived unscathed.

After nearly 19 years of almost daily use, it still works great.
Graineag is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Silver Sponsor

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:49 PM.