#1
http://www.riffstation.com/about.html <products website

Hey guys,

Just wondering if anyone has tried this product. It essentially is supposed to detect every chord in any song you drop into it. They claim it will tell you the key of the song, accurate chord progressions provided in real-time, and will help you isolate solos and perhaps tell you the notes used.

When learning a song on guitar, I typically go on this site and most cases I can find accurate tabs to learn the song of my choosing. Often times, I'll have to cross reference against other user submitted tabs. Eventually I have the song nailed down and its time to move on. So I'd more or less have interest in this product for those rare occurences when you can't find accurate tabs. Also, I think their can be some creative uses for this if you want to take an electronic song and figure out some chord progessions that weren't necesarily recorded using guitar.

I didn't post this to drum up a debate on the value of guitar lessons, learning by ear, or any other thing that might make a guitar purist wet in the socks. I'm simply curious of this piece of technology might have some use. I did read a review and they said its an interesting product but definitely flawed in many ways.

btw, I hope I posted this in the correct area....
Last edited by Gemini86 at Feb 17, 2014,
#2
I downloaded the trial version and must say that I'm not as disappointed as I thought I would be. The isolation of tracks is what caught my attention and it's kinda good. As you would expect, it's not great, but I put a song that I just couldn't hear one guitar on the chorus and now I can hear it perfectly. Didn't work as well with other songs, but still better than before, I'll definitely use it again.

On the other hand, the chord detection thing isn't useful at all, unless your song uses only basic chords. I put an electronic-esque song on it (lots of keyboards) and it didn't pick up the chords very well (it can't pick up on inversions), as well with the other guitar-driven songs (I did put some really atonal songs on it, lots of tritones and stuff, so maybe it can do better with "normal" songs). I didn't try the other features yet, but I can say for sure it's not worth the money, however I really liked the track isolation thingy.

Edit: I agree a 100% with fanapathy
Last edited by Lersch at Feb 17, 2014,
#3
I just checked it out for a while and can throw a verdict right away

-The "Chord detection / Chord viewer" gimmick is next to useless. It tries to read basic chords and can only do your minor/major, nothing more. It doesn't detect fretting or voicing but will give you the default chord chart from a beginner's book. I tested it in a really slow, almost Enya style song and it wasn't awful (even though there are still sus and add chords that go undetected). Then I tested it in 3 rock/metal songs, and one of my own where I know all the exact chords because I wrote it - and it's all over the place, it picked up like half of the changes but even then a lot were wrong. Since it's called Riff Station with a guitar picture, you might think this is gonna transcribe the riff for you and that it's for rock guitarists - misleading and just a waste of time to try to use this.

-The "Jam master" thing. "Isolate" is the most interesting feature of this app and it's pretty damn neat. I was able to quickly isolate lead guitar surprisingly decent here, same with bass and drums - this is potentially a great tool for transcribing (although with more complex mixing and many rhythm tracks - they sort of drowned still). I have to say it seems really good and I wish the rest of the app didn't suck. Tempo and pitch modifiers, nothing new there though - this is found in any modern audio editing software. It lacks all the great stuff that otherwise 7string Transcribe has but this is still probably one of the best equalizers/isolators I've tried - that's what they should be focusing on.

Verdict: Total waste of time and money if you're looking for a chord analyzer for modern music and expect to learn songs from it. Automatic tabbing - which is what beginners look for - just isn't happening anytime soon. Handy but unpolished transcribing tool that might become really good in the future. Would not recommend.
#4
Quote by Gemini86
those rare occurences when you can't find accurate tabs


Rare eh?
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#7
Quote by fanapathy
just isn't happening anytime soon. Handy but unpolished transcribing tool that might become really good in the future. Would not recommend.


My thoughts exactly. I've been reading a lot of reviews and I appreciate your thoughts after using it. It definitely seems like the technology has to advance considerably for this to be a useful tool.
#8
Quote by AlanHB
Rare eh?


I've actually had good luck finding tabs on ultimate guitar. Most of what I play is alt rock that I loved back in the early and mid 90s. I haven't had a need to look up more recent stuff, so maybe that might make things difficult for some users.
#9
Hey guys,

Bryan from Riffstation here.

It's really great to see some debate about Riffstation on here. I can totally see where some of you guys are coming from. We’re a small team of passionate guitarists looking to make the kind of tools we wished we had when first starting out and we're constantly striving to better Riffstation so we're always happy to hear any ideas that improve our software!

I completely agree that learning by ear is the way to go. The whole principal behind Riffstation is to help musicians who like to learn by ear.

For example, you can separate that hard to hear guitar part from the mix, slow it down if necessary, learn it, bring it up to speed, reverse the isolation to take the guitar part out of the mix, and jam with the band, all the while you’re using, and training, your ear.

The chord reading feature is geared more towards the busy musician who gotta learn heaps of 4 chord pop songs for cover gigs or the casual/beginner guitarist who wants to be able to play that new song they just heard on the radio so I can understand that it might be too simple for some of you guys.

We limit our chord selection to minor, major and 7 chords for a number of reasons. Our program actually detects a lot more notes. Look at a Cmaj7 chord for example. The chord contains both a C major triad and an E minor triad. That leaves 3 potential chords for Riffstation to choose between. (C, Em and Cmaj7) Limiting the pool to just major, minor and 7 chords ensures quite a high accuracy rate for our core users.

We’re constantly trying to improve Riffstation so we really appreciate your input. We're all guitar players here so if you guys any questions, ideas or suggestions we’d love to hear them!

Cheers guys,

Bryan
#10
I have been interested in trying this product out, but I have to be honest, I think the price is very high. The only thing I would be using the product for would be to load mp3's where I can't find tabs, and use the isolate software to slow down some of the guitar parts to understand them myself. Mostly live mp3's or songs that are obscure and don't have tabs available. So for me, I can't see myself paying $50. I can see $30, $35 might be a stretch. But more than that seems pretty high for what I will use it for. :-/
#11
Quote by jerrygillette
I have been interested in trying this product out, but I have to be honest, I think the price is very high. The only thing I would be using the product for would be to load mp3's where I can't find tabs, and use the isolate software to slow down some of the guitar parts to understand them myself. Mostly live mp3's or songs that are obscure and don't have tabs available. So for me, I can't see myself paying $50. I can see $30, $35 might be a stretch. But more than that seems pretty high for what I will use it for. :-/


So, givem all that how much do you think it cost, and what would you estimate the development time and debugging, education to learn to code, writing specs, determining program languages, and then determining algorithms, coding, beta testing, writing the UI, do you think it might have taken to create this program?

I don't work for free. I'm assuming you don't either. If you were to task someone to write a program like this assuming they have the availability, skill sets, and desire to do so for a given fee, how much might this program cost you?

I understand that for you the price might be too high, but we are talking about a tangible benefit that a user takes away from it, regardless of what someone makes of the execution, it's more than what's out there already in a lot of respects. Cost of development might make it a loss if it's sold for a different price point?

Best,

Sean
Last edited by Sean0913 at Feb 26, 2014,
#12
while i can say i understand your statement about the development costs, i'm more saying that for what i would only use it for, it doesn't really make sense for me. there are a handful of other products out there that do the same thing i am looking for, in some cases for free, with a not as fancy GUI because it wasn't developed by someone associated with that type of background. other people might say, yes this is exactly what i'm looking for and fork over the money, but for the limited amounts i would use it, it doesn't make sense.

in the past, they have lowered the price for a time and were selling it down in the mid-$30's price range to move product, perhaps seeing this thread on the forums may give them an incentive if they see that a number of people have tried and are not willing to fork over $50. had i known of the product then, i might have bought it.
#13
Quote by jerrygillette
while i can say i understand your statement about the development costs, i'm more saying that for what i would only use it for, it doesn't really make sense for me. there are a handful of other products out there that do the same thing i am looking for, in some cases for free, with a not as fancy GUI because it wasn't developed by someone associated with that type of background. other people might say, yes this is exactly what i'm looking for and fork over the money, but for the limited amounts i would use it, it doesn't make sense.

in the past, they have lowered the price for a time and were selling it down in the mid-$30's price range to move product, perhaps seeing this thread on the forums may give them an incentive if they see that a number of people have tried and are not willing to fork over $50. had i known of the product then, i might have bought it.



Appreciate your response. I can agree with you on that. If they can make it cost effective at the $30.00 price point, I'd certainly advocate that they do so. I have seen my share of great ideas on the concept side, work themselves out of business on the execution side simply because they priced themselves right out of the market. They were too enamored with their own product and overvalued it...a bad business move. You cannot lead with emotions, because the public may see it way differently.

Best,

Sean
#15
Riffstation On Sale now for only $25 U.S. I went ahead and bought it. For that price I feel it's worth while.