How does the touchpad affect the sound?
Synthesizers have many controls and effects that morph the sound. These can be mapped to the touchpad x or y axis in any way imaginable.
Can you sync it to MIDI?
Yes! It has usb-c midi out as well as standard 5-pin DIN midi.
Does it have an amp plug in?
It connects via midi. No amp plug-in but you can connect to a DAW and run that to an amp.
Can you play barre chords?
Yes, barre chords work very well on the Nova. They're excellent for pad and arpeggiator sounds, among others.
What is the polyphony?
Each "string" can play simultaneously, so the polyphony is 6. The "strings" also behave like normal guitar strings where they only play the top held fret.
Can you play hammer-ons?
Yes, we call this "tap" mode. When it's enabled you can trigger notes quickly with both hands without needing to touch the touchpad.
How do you play open strings?
We have some creative ideas to enable open string capabilities, but haven't had time to implement them quite yet. It's definitely our plan though, and some of them may even enable new techniques not found in traditional guitars.
Does it have internal sounds?
It does not have onboard sounds, but it can play any sound you want by connecting to your computer using MIDI with the provided USB-C cable, or to a hardware synth with the 5-pin midi connector.
I don't play guitar or have a musical background, is the Nova for me?
The Nova is surprisingly accessible to beginners. The buttons and touchpad do not require you to build up hand calluses or spend years learning plucking techniques. You can play amazing sounds by simply holding down any note with your left hand, and morphing the sound with your right.
Are the buttons on the neck velocity sensitive?
They are not. But the touchpanel can be used to change the attack and other synth parameters.
Is there a left-hand version?
It can be changed to left-handed tuning with a single button push. And there is a mode light on both sides of the fretboard. We don't have a left handed body quite yet, but we can install strap hardware on the left handed horn, just let us know!
Does it have a battery?
The Nova uses a USB-C cable to transmit MIDI and this same cable supplies all the power required, so no battery is needed. So the play setup consists of a single cable plugged into the instrument, similar to an electric guitar.
Is it stage ready?
Yes, it's been designed to be played on stage and we're working with musicians to make sure it has the features they need. (If you have a feature request feel free to let us know!)
What if I want to play wirelessly?
While the Nova doesn't have native wireless support, you can use the WIDI Master and an external battery to get a reliable, low latency wireless setup good to up to 65ft.
Is the touchpad always black?
Yes. It's a custom touchpad and has a lightly textured surface that makes it very smooth to slide your finger over. Not like a phone screen that grabs your finger as you slide around.
How durable is the Nova?
It is made to last a lifetime. We haven't cut corners with the design or materials. From the stainless steel fretboard, to the thick 3.5mm touchpad glass, it's made to be able to take a beating. The neck and body are made the same way traditional electric guitars are. We have early prototypes from 4 years ago that we've thrown around and brought all over the world, and they're still going strong.
What does the lifetime support include?
This means if you encounter any issues using the Nova we will do our best to help you work through them, even if it is outside the warranty period. This includes both software and hardware issues. (See below for hardware repairs outside the warranty.)
How much would it cost to repair outside the warranty?
It depends on how extensive the damage was, and which parts needed replacing. Most repairs should not cost more than $200.
Where are you located?
Bloomington IN, USA. If you're in the area and want to say hi or try out the Nova just send us a message and we'll set something up!