What is the Artiphon Instrument 1?

Over the past few days new US company Artiphon has been teasing tentative initial details of its first instrument, which is known as, funnily enough, Instrument 1.

At this stage it's still up for debate as to what exactly the Instrument 1 is. What we do know is that it's some form of controller to be used in conjunction with an iOS device, it's inspired by traditional stringed instruments and features a 'force-sensitive virtual string interface', and features some form of multitrack recording capability and audio and MIDI outs.

A statement on the Artiphon official site reads: "We are extending the musical possibilities of iOS devices into dramatically new territory. With an ergonomic body crafted from heirloom-quality hardwoods, this hybrid species of instrument offers musicians a force-sensitive interface, robust connectivity, and exceptional sound quality. Whether playing at home, in the studio, on the road, or on stage, Artiphon presents a dynamically new way to touch sound."

The official site lists the following features:

  • Extends the musicals capabilities of thousands of iOS apps beyond the screen
  • A body form inspired by traditional stringed instruments that can be held in multiple positions
  • Custom-designed electronics and precision-milled hardwoods, all made in Nashville, TN
  • High-fidelity stereo speakers produce warm, crisp sound that can fill a room
  • Force-sensitive virtual string interface adds detail and nuance to your performance
  • Full-featured performance interface and multi-track recording in a single instrument
  • Compact size and onboard battery let it accompany you anywhere
  • Built-in MIDI and professional audio connections integrate directly with GarageBand, Pro Tools and more
Si Truss

I'm Editor-in-Chief of Music Technology, working with Future Music, Computer Music, Electronic Musician and MusicRadar. I've been messing around with music tech in various forms for over two decades. I've also spent the last 10 years forgetting how to play guitar. Find me in the chillout room at raves complaining that it's past my bedtime.