This project's funding goal was not reached on December 6, 2011.
About this project
The iTar project is alive and well!
Visit the new iTar product page
Even though we probably won't reach our funding goal here at Kickstarter, we've been able to set up private financing and several great industry relationships that will launch the iTar into the marketplace better than we planned. Many thanks to Kickstarter for the opportunity and to everyone who was so supportive to pledge and to leave many thoughtful comments. Your comments and suggestions are still welcome so please come to our website, www.starrlabs.com to follow the progress of the iTar. And, if you're still interested to have an iTar, you can place your order as well. For original Kickstarter backers, shipping is free. See the comments section for a little more detail. Again, many thanks and blessings to you all.
The Story: Our project is designed for musicians, guitar heroes, electronic artists, iPad junkies and hackers looking for a fun and easy way to take their show on the road. At it's heart the device is a button-based guitar fretboard (Starr Labs patented fingerboard) integrated with a dock for the iPad which will transform the tablet into a 21st century musical instrument we call the iTar (tm).
Our fingerboard has been battle-tested and proven for years to be a professional-quality electronic music instrument. We've built custom instruments for the likes of Vernon Reid (of the endlessly awesome Living Color), the Chemical Brothers, Pendulum, Linkin Park, Lou Reed, Kesha, Michael Jackson, Stanley Jordan, and many TV/film studios. Check out the gallery at www.starrlabs.com to see the high quality instruments we've been building around this impressive technology for years. Our line of Ztars and Z-boards are each custom built by hand, from scratch.
By mass-producing the fingerboard and linking it to everyone’s favorite music player/tablet we are making this professional grade equipment affordable and available to a much wider audience. One of the coolest features is that the iPad's touchscreen interface will allow you to strum a guitar, tap on keys, bang on the drums, shake the maraca and more. You will literally have a full band at your fingertips. Imagine you start by looping your drum pattern, then you play over that with a bass-line, now bring in a little soulful trumpet and back that up with some piano. Nice. Or, you can set up some beats or samples, modify and jam over them with wild abandon. A DJ's dream!
The possibilities are truly endless.
We have primarily focused on the musical performance side of things because that's who we are. However, we realize that there are a number of application areas that will benefit from this technology beyond our passion for playing; guitar education, music-mixing software, jamming over the Internet, and interactive gaming come to mind. We can also envision podcasters, studio techs, and amateur film makers using it as a soundboard/lighting controller. The iTar will come with it's own proprietary music app for strumming and using the whammy bar, as well as letting you set up the fingerboard for your own special uses. We eagerly invite developers and software gurus to contact us about creating their own applications. Anybody with a great idea about other uses should email us too!
We honestly could not be more excited to introduce this new technology to the world, but there is one major hurdle for a small shop like ours and that is funding. Building one-off custom projects like our Ztars and Z-boards is no problem in our little shop, and though we are now building the prototype iTar, sadly we don't have the capacity or the money to jump into high-volume production on this project. That's why we need your help. With your pledge we can gather the funding to produce the electronics for the neck and the rest of the docking assembly, and setup the injection-molded plastic for the enclosure. You are our Obi Wan. You are our only hope.
ADDITIONAL NOTE TO INTERNATIONAL BACKERS: If you are outside the United States we would really appreciate an additional $10 (USD) added to your pledge for any reward level above $1 this is to help us cover international shipping fees. Thanks friend.
(Left to right: Scott - computer guru, Mark - technician, Harvey - inventor/bossman, Jason - house musician/tester/sales, and Sergio - fabrication/paint)
Here is Jason, hard at work testing a brand new instrument.
One of our promotional signs showing off several of our custom Ztars.
There will be a new level of quality construction and performance in this that hasn't been seen before at this price level. If you've ever played a $200 MIDI guitar you know what cheap toys they are.
Sadly, no. There is a mis-wording in the text for the $200 reward. We started with some posters and other art at the lower reward levels but due to the lack of interest I removed those. I'm not able to edit the $200 level to reflect the changes.
In spite of the straight sides, it's really very comfortable when held in the sitting position. There will also be strap buttons attached.
Definitely. There are special incentives and pricing for dealers. Contact me directly for details.
We will provide an application that strums and taps and lets you assign some extra faders and pads for additional control. We also have some more exotic ideas in the works. And we're hoping other developers will find this an interesting platform to work with.
Yes, that's the goal. That's a project in itself and we're brainstorming the types of tools that developers will need to work with our hardware. Developers are invited to contact us with questions and ideas for apps that will help define the toolset.
Great question! We've got a couple of cool things in mind but the intent is to support others in creating add-ons they find useful.
- (60 days)