Product: Musical Instrument: Electronic
Guitar Synth   (+3)  [vote for, against]
Synthesised guitar

On a guitar, to my knowledge, the frets and the strings are both metallic. If you were to set up a low voltage on the frets and earth the strings you would be able to register which string is being pulled to which fret.

By analysing this you could have a synthesiser set play the correct corresponding note at the volume registered by the pickup.

This would also allow you to play a different instrument on the guitar (it would act like an electric keyboard) or have different guitar sounds (eg accoustic or different makes of guitar) from the same guitar.

Because it is reliant on the connection and not the note played the guitar would also not need to be tuned.
-- miasere, Oct 24 2005

Not like this:
but this is pretty cool anyway. [wagster, Oct 24 2005]

Vox did this in 1966. The Guitorgan was a Vox Phantom with the guts of a Vox Continental organ built into it, triggered exactly as you describe. It was mains-powered. They were unreliable and unpopular, and Vox only built eighty (I have one of them). Godwin did the same around 1976.
My Casio MIDI guitar works similarly to [Ian]'s Roland.
-- angel, Oct 24 2005

How about a robotic guitar you can hook up to a keyboard or other input source?
-- Spacecoyote, Dec 19 2008

Dedicated MIDi guitars like those from Casio used the frets, wheras the Roland use one pickup per string.A good example of MIDI guitar can be heard on Thomas Dolby's "keys to her Ferrari" Back in the 1970's Vox produced an organ guitar, which i've never heard.they're extremely rare. Alternatively play a synth using the handy keyboard
-- giligamesh, Dec 22 2008

[Ian] Awesome (second) link! I'm planning on ordering an Arduino controller; I think you've just given me a new hobby.

Even though this is baked, I would be proud to have thought of it independently. It would make a nice DIY project.

You haven't explained how plucking would be detected; using a metallic pick or bare fingers, the slight current drain could be detected on contact, like the way some lift buttons work. [edit] Sorry, wasn't thinking; the string-stopping fingers would have the same effect. You would prolly need a metal pick with a wire attached to it.
-- spidermother, Dec 24 2008

and Yamaha gave DSI the Sequential name back, apparently instigated by Mr Takahashi, so I might just partially forgive Roland a deliberate circle-jerk their repair centre visited on me.
-- FlyingToaster, Jan 24 2015

random, halfbakery