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Thread: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

  1. #76

    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Just got back on here and it's a pretty big disappointment to see how far this has veered from its original intent. I'm hoping to get my unit tomorrow (based on the tracking) and I will use it for about a week and maybe repeat the experiments done by the guys who made it (although with a home recording setup). I was hoping other players would chime in about the device as I have been hoping from the very beginning of when I joined this forum.

    I've only ever wanted an educated opinion based on first hand knowledge (Ie people who own and use the tone traveler), I've gotten a lot of loose "theory" based on very limited knowledge.

    Still, vintage instruments (ie instruments that have been played for years and years) hold the place of number one in most serious players' minds. Also based on the reviews I read for the tone traveler, this concept holds true. That is why I bought one.

    I don't understand everyone who disagrees with the pretty clear video from drherringbone. It seems like a lot of strong opinions from people who have never used one, strong opinions that seem to fly in the face of (admittedly limited but concrete) evidence.

    More first hand news to come.

  2. #77
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    If you post here on Mandolin Cafe you have to expect a wide variety of comments including some just opinions, some musing on scientific method and some in favor of anything buttressing their own beliefs. It is the nature of an Internet forum and ours is more civilized than some. And, of course topics will go off-course from time to time.

    Going back to your original post: have you tried to contact Steve Gilchrist directly and ask his thoughts? He usually replies pretty quickly in my experience.
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  4. #78

    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    I've only ever wanted an educated opinion based on first hand knowledge (Ie people who own and use the tone traveler), I've gotten a lot of loose "theory" based on very limited knowledge.
    So you say Dr. Herringbone is more of an educated opinion than a controlled scientific study from Stanford University!!!????? Wow!!!

    You got a controlled scientific study from one of the foremost and prestigious academic institutions in the world. You also got commentary from one of the few academic researchers to do actual acoustical studies in a lab on mandolins. You chose to ignore that based on medicine show hype. Your intent appears to be that wanted validation of your already held opinions. You did not get that. Good luck. Its your money.

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  6. #79

    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Basically, people like what they like -- even in the face of overwhelming facts to the contrary. No, I'm not talking about politics, just an observation on how our minds work. And how it concerns our hobby. We are attracted to what we are attracted to, for whatever reasons....

    Some people like bluegrass, some don't. Some people aren't attracted to a vintage instrument, they must have a new build. Same with automobiles, some people won't drive a used car, etc. Some of us like trying new picks, strings, armrests, tuners, etc., and some of us don't see the need. Millions of examples across the board....

    And, that's what makes it a hobby, IMHO. If it makes you happy, then do it. There are no correct answers, only opinions. And, as Jim said this is a very polite forum compared to others I follow.

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  8. #80

    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Quote Originally Posted by FourPairPicker View Post
    I don't understand everyone who disagrees with the pretty clear video from drherringbone. It seems like a lot of strong opinions from people who have never used one, strong opinions that seem to fly in the face of (admittedly limited but concrete) evidence.
    All those disagreeing people with their strong opinions may have simply taken your original post (see excerpt below) at face value.

    Quote Originally Posted by FourPairPicker View Post
    Either way I love having these discussions with folks and totally respect your stance
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  9. #81
    Fingertips of leather Bill McCall's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Mando View Post
    ………. There are no correct answers, only opinions. And, as Jim said this is a very polite forum compared to others I follow.
    Actually, there are some correct answers, even in this forum.
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  10. #82
    Registered User foldedpath's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Quote Originally Posted by FourPairPicker View Post
    Still, vintage instruments (ie instruments that have been played for years and years) hold the place of number one in most serious players' minds.
    I don't play a vintage instrument. I bought a mandolin new around 15 years ago after some serious research and loved the way it sounded when it arrived. I still love the way it sounds now, maybe even a little better but that's because I'm a better player than I was then. That's the hard part to tease out of all these conversations.

    Maybe you want to refine what you mean by a serious player? Most of us who spend time here on the Cafe are pretty serious about what we're doing.

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  12. #83
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    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    I have two guaranteed methods to having your mandolin's tone sound better by strumming machines. Hand it to me and it will certainly sound worse. Hand it to Mike Compton and it will sound better. I once had the chance to hold and strum Steve Martin's Loar signed mandolin (I was delivering credentials to the Steep Canyon Rangers at a festival). It sounded exactly like any other mandolin I strummed. Once Mike Guggino played it it was totally different. I did not notice if he used any device on it prior to taking the stage.

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  14. #84

    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill McCall View Post
    Actually, there are some correct answers, even in this forum.
    I know that and you know that, but nobody else wants to listen to me!!!

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  16. #85
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    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    I bought a Tone Traveler unit a couple of months ago, just on a whim. At the time I was willing to take the claims with a grain of salt, realizing that I might be proving the null hypothesis. I have since used it on a couple of guitars and a couple of mandolins. I have to say that I don't entirely trust my ears in these matters as my perceptions seem to vary from day to day, depending on how my allergies are treating me. One obvious thing that I did notice was that (obviously) playing immediately after a session was completed, a mandolin will sound much louder, which makes sense as it has just undergone a prolonged "warming up period". How much residual effect remains I'm not sure I can say. It seemed to vary from instrument to instrument, really. On an Italian Spruce it seems to really have made a noticeable difference whereas on a Port Orford Spruce topped mandolin I'd say a slightly noticeable difference. On a Martin D28 there did seem to be some improvement in tone but in a custom OO that has graphite bracing and much older top wood, not much change. I plan to keep using the Tone Traveler from time to time to see what changes I may notice over time. I will say that it works good for warming an instrument up. I put it on a mandolin for 2-3 hours before going to jam with a friend and by the time I got there it was ready to go.

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  18. #86
    Registered User Drew Egerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Quote Originally Posted by FourPairPicker View Post
    Just got back on here and it's a pretty big disappointment to see how far this has veered from its original intent. I'm hoping to get my unit tomorrow (based on the tracking) and I will use it for about a week and maybe repeat the experiments done by the guys who made it (although with a home recording setup). I was hoping other players would chime in about the device as I have been hoping from the very beginning of when I joined this forum.

    I've only ever wanted an educated opinion based on first hand knowledge (Ie people who own and use the tone traveler), I've gotten a lot of loose "theory" based on very limited knowledge.

    Still, vintage instruments (ie instruments that have been played for years and years) hold the place of number one in most serious players' minds. Also based on the reviews I read for the tone traveler, this concept holds true. That is why I bought one.

    I don't understand everyone who disagrees with the pretty clear video from drherringbone. It seems like a lot of strong opinions from people who have never used one, strong opinions that seem to fly in the face of (admittedly limited but concrete) evidence.

    More first hand news to come.
    Frankly, to me it sounds like you have some kind of invested interest in these things from the tone and content of your posts, which rubs me the wrong way. I also think it is hocus pocus. Carry on.
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  20. #87

    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Quote Originally Posted by rick frank View Post
    I bought a Tone Traveler unit a couple of months ago, just on a whim. At the time I was willing to take the claims with a grain of salt, realizing that I might be proving the null hypothesis. I have since used it on a couple of guitars and a couple of mandolins. I have to say that I don't entirely trust my ears in these matters as my perceptions seem to vary from day to day, depending on how my allergies are treating me. One obvious thing that I did notice was that (obviously) playing immediately after a session was completed, a mandolin will sound much louder, which makes sense as it has just undergone a prolonged "warming up period". How much residual effect remains I'm not sure I can say. It seemed to vary from instrument to instrument, really. On an Italian Spruce it seems to really have made a noticeable difference whereas on a Port Orford Spruce topped mandolin I'd say a slightly noticeable difference. On a Martin D28 there did seem to be some improvement in tone but in a custom OO that has graphite bracing and much older top wood, not much change. I plan to keep using the Tone Traveler from time to time to see what changes I may notice over time. I will say that it works good for warming an instrument up. I put it on a mandolin for 2-3 hours before going to jam with a friend and by the time I got there it was ready to go.
    Anyone want to either define, or start a very long thread about what warming up a mandolin means? I have the (moderately educated) feeling that, like many things in the present thread, that we could venture far into psychology but only a little way into matters acoustic.

  21. #88
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    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Rick Frank mentions one aspect of the Tone Traveler that I've been wondering about, that is, when you use it on an instrument is the enhanced sound quality permanent or temporary? If using it seems only to provide a limited period of improvement such that each time you take the instrument from its case, it needs a new treatment to regain the enhanced sound quality, then it has become a problem. Who wants to attach that thing and then wait before you get to enjoy playing? On the other hand, if one application is all that is necessary (I personally doubt this is possible) why doesn't the factory that made the instrument do a Tone Traveler treatment before they sell the instrument thereby saving you, the purchaser the cost of the device. I ask those who own and use the device, are the effects lasting or short lived, as in one day? Is the cost of such a device really worth the time and effort in your opinion? I feel that if you've spent the money to buy one you may be biased due to the fact you want to think your money was wisely spent, but I would still like to know.

  22. #89

    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Quote Originally Posted by rick frank View Post
    I bought a Tone Traveler unit a couple of months ago, just on a whim. At the time I was willing to take the claims with a grain of salt, realizing that I might be proving the null hypothesis. I have since used it on a couple of guitars and a couple of mandolins. I have to say that I don't entirely trust my ears in these matters as my perceptions seem to vary from day to day, depending on how my allergies are treating me. One obvious thing that I did notice was that (obviously) playing immediately after a session was completed, a mandolin will sound much louder, which makes sense as it has just undergone a prolonged "warming up period". How much residual effect remains I'm not sure I can say. It seemed to vary from instrument to instrument, really. On an Italian Spruce it seems to really have made a noticeable difference whereas on a Port Orford Spruce topped mandolin I'd say a slightly noticeable difference. On a Martin D28 there did seem to be some improvement in tone but in a custom OO that has graphite bracing and much older top wood, not much change. I plan to keep using the Tone Traveler from time to time to see what changes I may notice over time. I will say that it works good for warming an instrument up. I put it on a mandolin for 2-3 hours before going to jam with a friend and by the time I got there it was ready to go.
    Thanks so much rick! I can't wait to try mine out

  23. #90

    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Just to note, if you are hyping a product which you have a vested interest in that is ethically wrong and dishonest.

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  25. #91

    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Honestly, I think some of the behaviors in this thread go beyond friendly. I don't see any indication the poster "Rick Frank" has a vested interest in this product and don't understand why someone responding to the OP with their personal experience comes off that way. There is absolutely nothing in that post that comes off as hyping a product for their own interest. Some people believe this sort of technology/concept works, others don't. For the record I have NFI and don't own one of these devices. I know many reputable people that very much believe in using some form or other of technology to open up instruments. I may just get one to turn my mandolin into the Schmergel Devastator.

  26. #92
    Registered User Russ Donahue's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    Playing the Devastator card? Josh, you just upped the ante.
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  27. #93

    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    It was also my impression that a couple of the postings sounded more like an advertisement that a question. Not accusing anyone, but....

    I do know that a great instrument sounds great right out of the case with the first chord. I don't know if a less than great instrument can be made "great" by attaching a gadget.

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  29. #94
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    Default Re: Gilchrist Using The Tone Traveler On Mike Compton's Mandolin

    The individual that started this thread has been permanently banned from the Mandolin Cafe and Classifieds for posing as an interested party for a product and attempting to drum up enthusiasm for it when in fact they have a vested financial interest in the business.

    We were contacted about this product by the company in question originating from our Contact Us form on March 13 of this year and asked for rates for advertising. We suggested instead they post a Classified ad to assess the interest in the product instead of paying for an ad. The classified ad, which was just removed, was posted March 19. FourPairPicker registered for a Forum account March 20. FourPairPicker made their first post on subject from July 27. In total, that party made 13 posts, all on this subject.

    Every single IP addresses, starting with the initial contact in March, the IP of FourPairPicker's initial Forum account request, the IP the classified ad was posted from, and every single post originates from the same identical IP location in Raleigh, NC. The phone number for Tone Traveller is a Raleigh area code. The ad representing Tone Traveller was placed from a residential address in Chapel Hill, NC.

    There's plenty more, but no need to go there. One of the moderators working on this with me has said this is currently occurring on other stringed instrument forums this very moment. Haven't looked myself, probably won't, but understand the user names of the "interested enthusiasts" of the product are different than that used here.

    For the record: we have no opinion on the veracity or lack thereof regarding the product in question, and the fact this discussion has ended should not be taken as anything other than us protecting our membership over a clear violation of Forum Posting Guidelines which state:

    Vendors: for the good of our community we ask that all vendors of mandolin/music related products/services exercise good faith in clearly identifying themselves. Vendor participation is welcome and valued, and we expect you to be involved in discussions of your products. Visitors to the site arrive from all over the world and possess widely varying amounts of knowledge, expertise and experience with our subject matter. This is an international web site for mandolin, not a country-specific web site. All visitors should be able to clearly discern a business relationship at all times in discussions of products sold in the retail market.

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