BackLine Engineering has announced RiffBox, a looping technology designed to enhance the capabilities of performing musicians. RiffBox uses a patent-applied-for method to determine loop timing by recognizing each note or chord that you play. You can also synchronize an external MIDI drum machine to your loops for the ultimate one-man band experience.
The RiffBox does not try to emulate software-based loopers in a dedicated hardware box, but instead provides a very simple and intuitive user interface.
Traditional loopers require you to press a footswitch at the right time or to time your playing to match a MIDI clock or external tempo to get accurate loop timing. With RiffBox, loops can be timed to your playing. You can even start loop playback without the press of a footswitch. If you want to time your loops to external audio signals or MIDI sequencers, RiffBox has options for that as well.
RiffBox contains 76 operating modes and other settings that can be saved in 100 preset locations. The factory presets provide a good starting point for almost any type of loop that you want to create. You can manually add layers to a loop, automatically add multiple layers, fade loops, automatically end loops, play loops back in reverse or play loops back at half speed. These are just some of the operating modes available. It also records loops in CD quality audio with up to 40 seconds of loop time in 16-bit 48KHz stereo, or up to 80 seconds of loop time in 16-bit 48KHz mono.
You can control RiffBox in a variety of ways including a built-in footswitch, a remote footswitch, or with MIDI program change messages. If you use a MIDI setup, you can control loop recording with the same footswitch that changes your amplifier setting. This means that you can control loop recording and playback with no more footswitch presses than you would normally use.
With the available automatic looping capability, loop recording stops and playback begins automatically without the press of a footswitch. This feature also allows several delay effects where the delay time is based upon the time difference between the first two notes that you play. Synchronizing an external MIDI drum machine to your loops is just as simple.
Pricing and Availability:
RiffBox will be available for initial shipment in early April 2005 at a street price of $390.
More information is available at the Backline site.