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Clint Thompson

How many of you own an Atari Hotz Box?

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When the iPad first debuted, I thought to myself "I wonder when the Hotz software will be ported to it". Well, it's 2019 now and still no dice...

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When the iPad first debuted, I thought to myself "I wonder when the Hotz software will be ported to it". Well, it's 2019 now and still no dice...

 

Yeah, not really sure why that hasn't happened, though I still feel like one is not complete without the other (Hotz software and Hotz Box) and AFAIK, iPads don't offer full pressure sensitive touch yet so it woudln't be possible to emulate the Hotz Box. I'm guessing pricing is the other factor since the current Windows iteration is $199 - not sure what price point it would come to the iOS/etc. store., and in my opinion it's just too expensive unfortunately.

 

Uploaded a short clip of Kitaro using his custom Hotz controllers in 1994 from An Enchanted Evening Vol 1 - Mandala:

 

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A while back I was finally able to pick up the smaller Hotz wing controller to complete the Hotz setup as what I imagined always being a complete setup. It came with original disks and the large master instructions for the Hotz Translator Atari ST software as well as the original Hotz Trax for W95/W98.

 

I will say though, that if I would have received the small version instead of the large box at first, my impression of the the device would have been different, whereas I think I would have said to myself: I'm glad I didn't bother getting the bigger version... (but would have always had that wonder lingering in the back of my mind about the larger unit and its capabilities). Having received the large Hotz Box first has me saying: I'm glad I didn't get the smaller version first as I would have missed out on an amazing MIDI controller combination setup and one of the coolest musical input devices I've ever had the joy of experiencing.

 

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I even went as far as getting the original stand used in the Atari promotional brochures:

 

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It's a dream to finally have them both running in tandem and usable on the fly in multiple configurations. I already have quite a few musical compositions possible to iron out that wouldn't have been possible without these, especially from an expressive creative or creation standpoint, as you find yourself doing things you would have never imagined possible trying before.

 

Eventually I'll dive in deeper at some point and create some in-depth videos to really give an elaborate overview of the setup as a whole and what's possible. If anyone has specific interest points or questions to focus on, please drop a comment below so I can add it to future videos.

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On 5/27/2019 at 12:05 PM, Wally1 said:

Let's hear some samples of your creation.

Haven't had the time to finalize and record the much more complex stuff I've been toying with but feel like this is an unusual example of what can be done on it in very simple form without the software:

 

 

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Comparing the large Hotz Box against the smaller unit. Not sure why the large one has what looks to be a printed logo as the top shell definitely has a pad stamped logo while the smaller unit has both top and back stamped. 

 

If only these things weren’t so rare. I would love to disassemble one to check out the internal goodies but definitely do not want to damage the ribbons and these did not come by cheap for me, so I’m not sure that will happen. 

 

The smaller unit did not come with a serial number but the large unit is listed as 1061. I’ve seen another unit with the serial number of 069 and one of the original testers unit serial number is handwritten 01002. I suspect Jimmy had envisioned selling possibly over 10,000 units at some point but since the pricing never was realistically low enough for the average consumer, it never happened.

 

It’s also too bad that the software seemed to be the huge focus with these but I’m guessing after realizing very limited amount of people were willing to pay $2,000+ for one, it was probably a last ditch effort to bring in some sort of revenue since so much time and effort was put into creating and manufacturing these super cool MIDI controllers.

 

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*notice the original white labels used on other units, mine has a silver reflective label

 

 

Not trying to turn this into an advert but since they’re so seemingly rare, figured I would share this Reverb post by someone (Yoram Ariel) who claims to be one of the original testers. If I didn’t already have mine, I would jump on it (also, he’s in Israel):

 

https://reverb.com/item/23217976-atari-hotz-box-master-unit-hmt130h-1989-blue-black

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Looks like another smaller unit was just listed by Dean the other day on Reverb for $1,975. Since they are rare to appear, wanted to drop the link:

 

https://reverb.com/item/29590546-atari-hotz-box-midi-translator-ultra-rare-midi-controller-2005-black-blue

 

I do believe that is his last one of these specific variants. The large unit from Tim is still on Reverb as well for $3,000 but he never responded to my message so I'm not sure if he actually still has it available for sale.

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So over the weekend I had quite a scare with the Large Hotz Box. I was practicing several hours to prepare for recording one of the more complex tunes I've been experimenting with and out of nowhere sustain on both channels 1 and 2 dropped, which is essential for what I was playing. It didn't stop there though and part of the 2nd channel keypad stopped functioning completely and then finally both modulation and pitch for channels 1 and 2 were acting completely erratic and bending the tune into an unplayable state.

 

Hooked it up to MIDI OX to investigate and sure enough the Hotz was going completely bonkers when pressing any of the pitch/mod keys. Instead of sending pitch bend/modulation signals, it was all over the place with control changes, foot switch changes and would overload the MIDI bus to the point of causing an error and stopping completely. The thought of having to send it to Jimmy for repair filled me with unease, not only with the thought of the expense involved to ship both ways but to also pay for the time and possible parts to repair the unit.

 

What this eventually led to was me ultimately doing what I had not wanted to do to begin with and that was to disassemble the unit for troubleshooting and attempting to repair myself. Mainly this was a fear instilled due to word on just how fragile the unit is (and expensive!) and how easily damaged it can become. I think if any issues did arise for the majority of owners, most would just have sent it back to Jimmy for resolution. However, this turned into an opportunity to finally see what was under the hood of the Hotz since I have not seen a single internal photo of any Hotz Box units online to date. I realize the units are seemingly rare but it has definitely remained a mystery as to why no one has captured pictures of the guts and glory that is known as the Hotz and plastered them online at some point over the past 30 years.

 

Long story short, Jimmy was kind enough to briefly talk me through properly disassembling the unit the other night in a way as to not completely wreck it. I took mental notes and decided to rip it apart this evening in hopes to resolve the gremlins it was suddenly plagued with. Not only was I able to fix the issue (after a bit of reseating the majority of components on board #3) but I was also able to find why sustain on channels 3/4 wasn't working since I received the unit, due to a hot glued wire that had jarred lose. Anyways, I did manage to take some pictures and document the chips used so that I can purchase spares in case I may need them in the future. The only other major concern I have right now is the very dated original Atari TT power supply that is juicing this unit for obvious reasons.

 

Tech mumbo jumbo after the pics:

 

Here you can see the 3 main processing boards, each identical in layout and design but configured individually to match that of the pad configuration necessary:

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The key fragility components on these are apparently the ribbon cables to the pads themselves, which are even more frail than what you would find connecting LCDs in even older laptops due to being nickel plated and not copper connections:

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Stickers inside to show you DIP switch settings for each of the boards and layout inside:

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Here you can see the MCU , EEPROM, SRAM and ADC chips that make all the continuous magic happen - also note the ancient 30-year old brittle glue gobs:

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PCB reads - Atari Jimmy Hotz MIDI Box Rev 4:

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The (10) microprocessors are Intel 1980 8-Bit MCS51 MCUs / CISC 8051s that were created for embedded specific applications such as this very Hotz Box. Each board is also equipped with (3) 32Kx8 NEC SRAM chips (D43256AC-10L) and (3) 8-Bit Analog to Digital Convertors (ADC0816CNN) with of course the accompanying sub-components and EEPROM program chips to drive them all: Code C301539-001 Ver 3.4 - I did notice the boards were manufactured through Alterflex, the same company that Atari used for the majority of their PCB designs in the later 80s and early 90s.

 

I'll have another write-up round soon with some more detailed info on the Hotz in general and eventually may dive into the smaller newer unit since it's a completely different creature but wanted to share the main juicy bits this go around on the larger Hotz Box.

Edited by Clint Thompson
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Just ran across this tonight and wanted to share probably the last massive update I make to this thread. I hadn't seen this video before since it fails to mention Atari or Hotz but is indeed the Hotz Vest Mick used during their tour - what a wild concert that must have been a part of lol:

 


Digging further into the Hotz Rabbit Hole, I managed to get a better timeline and details of how the Hotz hardware/software continued post-Atari days until now. Interestingly, there was no mention of being able to purchase any Hotz Box hardware devices on either the Hotz.com site or on Accordance Music Systems site after the original Hotz site (Hotz Interactive) ceased to exist. I can only find that Jimmy started selling custom Hotz Boxes again directly on his website beginning in 2009. The prices for these units were and still are ranging from $2,500 for a smaller unit and upwards of $10,000 for the larger units.

 

The Post Atari Hotz Timeline:

 

1997 - Jimmy Hotz and Charles Abronson runs Hotz Interactive (www.Hotz.com) and sells Hotz Trax 1, Hotz Trax 2, Hotz Player (free), Hotz Translator and Hotz Maker - Sells 3rd party D-Beam Dimension IR hardware controller to be used in conjunction with Translator Software. Device is listed for $499 (this same IR beam technology was later licensed to Roland and can be found in many of their products like the Roland Fantom)

dimensionbeam.thumb.PNG.7f807f8e68031c21d8fd6e3e3ef32306.PNGhotzcorporatebackgrounder.thumb.PNG.4e3a9e46c29c25cb4f30f415c1549c1b.PNGhotzcorpproducts.thumb.PNG.85346c860152fa749f8ecaf54df12715.PNG

 

1998 - Hotz Trax 1 and 2 pricing and availability ($29 and $49)

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1999 - U-Play (appears to be re-labeled/branded Hotz Trax with dedicated site for Windows 95) introduced by Accordance for $25 (Drops Hotz Trax from product offerings) (Hotz Tranaltor II price increases to $99) This is also the time period where Jimmy creates a dedicated site www.JimmyHotz.com for his own works and inventions starting December of 1999. He must have known a change of hands was about to take place with Accordance taking over the Hotz technology completely.

uplaytranslator.thumb.PNG.134425751b2f63d54dd03ddf4a7fb97e.PNGuplay2.thumb.PNG.ca77fc6c26f5d79ce35ea1d8c1f83e3b.PNG

 

Comparing the U-Play re-label to the original Hotz Translator screens - it would seem the original is superior looking:

 

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2000 - U-Play still sells for $25 (drops Hotz Trax 1 and 2 availability) End of year Hotz Interactive becomes Accordance Music Systems www.accordance.net
 

2001 - Hotz.com redirects to Accordance Music Systems. (Charles Aboronson as CEO and Jeremy Wasser as CTO- no longer mentions Jimmy Hotz) Freestyle Player becomes translator enabled software for online net use.  Freestyle Studio to come in 2001. Went on to become Music Therapy or Muse MTE for $39.99 (another re-branded, re-purposed version of the Hotz Translator software package). Below you will find a video of Mick Fleetwood talking about the now Muse MTE or Therapy Music program and screenshots. I could not find this particular software variant available anywhere. Mick makes it a point to exclude mentioning Jimmy Hotz in the video or on their website and loosely uses the creation technology as reference only.

 

mte1.jpg.981ca8ec7785aed1b24fb440ec0059a1.jpgmte2.jpg.9880761dedb7a46ee7f3e19cc8d0f309.jpgfreestyleplugin.jpg.12f5ddc6bcd45c3f2c3e30fb6d8907b2.jpg

 

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2002 - Freestyle plugin updated - Hotz.com continues to re-direct to Accordance Music Systems

 

freestylepluginupdated2002.jpg.650293df859b48a0c04b9468d0739158.jpg

 

2003 - No updates to Accordance Music Systems - JimmyHotz begins working on Hotz Encryption Technology (does not appear to gain any momentum and is later not mentioned)

 

2004 - Hotz domain ceases to exist ; No updates on Accordance Music Systems

 

2005  - No Updates

 

2006 - Accordance drops all translator software from product offering and shifts business model to initiate focus on Wholesale Music and Accessories (this proves to go nowhere)

 

2007 - No updates with Accordance, wholesale music/accessory business site remains at a standstill. Tim Conrardy announces release of Hotz MIDI Translator software for the Atari ST as FREEWARE - Permission is granted by Accordance to release the original ST software. Jimmy announces newer Hotz Super Instrument using similar pads used on the original Hotz Box but configured to be played as a guitar as seen below:

 

 

2008 - Hotz.com domain becomes a dating website ; no updates on Accordance and remains in wholesale storefront limbo until 2013 when site ceases to exist.

 

2009 - Jimmy Hotz opens online store through his personal website as www.hotzstore.com , begins selling Translator II software again for $199. Unique Hotz Controllers available on a custom order basis.

 

2010 - No notable updates.

 

2011 - Jimmy Hotz demonstrates You Rock Guitar MIDI controller being used with Hotz Translator II software.

 

 

2012-2014 - No notable updates.

 

2015 - Jimmy helps David Clark create the 10th generation, portable version of an IR beam Space Harp MIDI controller which was funded on IG. Interestingly this seems to bounce right back to the beginning when Jimmy was selling the D-Beam Dimension in 1997. You can see the product offering through www.SpaceHarp.com - I did not receive a response to my inquiry regarding SpaceHarp pricing information sent earlier this year.

 

 

2016 - No notable updates.

 

2017 - Hotz Translator III software becomes available - price remains at $199. Jimmy helps produce Soundwell's DEK MIDI Controller device in conjunction with Dean Hovey - www.soundwell.io - You can see the very similar membrane style used with this new device but now includes transparency for underlying illumination which is now in tiny squares:

 

 

2018 - Soundwell's DEK is shown by Dean Hovey (the same guy who was recently selling his 4 custom Atari Hotz wing controllers, which have now all been sold) at NAMM 2018 - Hotz Translator III remains available for $199.

 

 

2019 - No notable updates.

 

End Timeline Update

 

Admittedly, I wasn't much of a fan with the idea of the Soundwell DEK because I would prefer to play the original Hotz Box since it has a much more traditional keyboard layout. While it's kind of on the weirder side of things, it's possible this unit could be configured and used for polychromatic / microtonal music experimentation similar to what Dolores Catherino has been known to play, which may prove to be kind of interesting but unlikely for me to ever really get into:

 

 

 

What I would personally like to see Jimmy create now is a flat Hotz touch controller that is similar to that of a Haken Continuum only priced much lower and in red with the touch surface similar to that of a laptop touchpad. As it would be more digital, should be less expensive and would be less mechanical like that of the Haken, it would be easier to get in the hands of musicians but that was supposed to also be the same idea behind the Hotz Box itself.

 

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I'm not sure why an affordable Hotz Box with digital continuum controller combination couldn't be made as that would be an ultimate dream device for modern day use but seriously doubt we'll ever see the likes of that happening, at least from Hotz and/or Haken himself. I think the Roli Seaboard is the closest we'll get in that regard, despite my sincere dislike for the feel of the unit. Was on the edge of purchasing it and then after playing with it in person, couldn't stand the rubber feel with the straw-like tubing underneath the surface.

 

 

Next update will include the last bit of Hotz related scans I have but will be for another time.

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Edited by Clint Thompson
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A few more Hotz related items arrived and one in particular that took some serious digging to find was a VHS promo of the French band called Lightwave (had never heard of them before) who collaborated with Paul Haslinger from Tangerine Dream to play with them live at The Astoria in 1992. You can see a small clip I captured here but the entire thing is over an hour long and features video shots of the Hotz Box almost the full duration with multiple Atari ST computers in action. It was quite a treat to watch. The entire time it gave off the vibe that they were really trying to sound a lot like Tangerine Dream (and for good reason) as I then saw Paul Haslinger playing the Hotz and was "Ohhhh!" :D well, that makes sense.

 

I haven't seen any other bands use the Hotz Box in concert outside of Fleetwood Mac (until now) but they didn't really show it much in their videos. It's very prominently shown throughout this event however, even if it's really kind of bizarre usage, similar to the Kitaro video:

 

 

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Pictures from the Lightwave studio, you can see a Hotz in the background with the Atari ST running the Translator software:

 

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These pictures certainly make more sense now with Paul Haslinger in Jimmy's studio:

 

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Gert Borovcok was kind enough to open up his Hotz Wing controller and verify the PCB internals are identical to the larger unit:

 

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Mondo 2000 magazine with an article from 1992 also showed up on my doorstep recently:

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Mondo_2000.Issue_08.1992_0021.thumb.jpg.eb7815f96ff6536213344fb17ffde2e8.jpgMondo_2000.Issue_08.1992_0022.thumb.jpg.972da77f176f0e1566d0af0079e4036e.jpg

 

Future Music - October 2006 wrote about the Hotz Box a little bit and mentioned Jimmy Hotz in the front of their magazine:

 

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Pretty sure the information well is almost dried up at this point on what's left out there. It has taken a considerable amount of research time to find all of these information tidbits, so it only makes sense to continue sharing what little I find here and there. I'm actually surprised having been able to find as much as I did considering just how scattered everything was in regards to time gaps and locations. Even so, there are still a ton of unanswered questions which hopefully someday will be revealed.

 

With that said, there's a nice little project I've been working on and should have it completed in the next month since I'm eager to add it to my studio mix. Will post more details on when that's done as I'm eagerly looking forward to it being finished! =D

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Posted (edited)
On 3/5/2020 at 8:49 AM, rdefabri said:

Really cool piece of history, but forgive my ignorance - how is the Hotz Box any different from a MIDI keyboard controller? 

I think your question really hits head on as to why the Hotz Box never managed to gain momentum (outside of quite a few other variables prohibiting it) or others understanding its intended purpose.

 

Words really can't do it any justice but from a technical standpoint on the hardware side alone, I would say the primary takeaway bullet points would be:

 

-Built-in vibrato (perfect for a whammy-styled guitar sound). Jimmy is a guitar player first and foremost, so it makes sense he would want to translate that play-ability into the device.

-More sensitive pitch bending that's configurable via the Translator software. There's something to be said about having those 3 buttons to pitch bend up, down and use vibrato in one central location.

-Possibility of 8 individual layered MIDI channels (different sounds) played simultaneously or entire board merged into a single channel via Translator software for fast scaling, all with sustain possibilities.

-Incredibly fast sliding due to the flat membrane ideal for harp-like sounds and playing, sliding of guitar sounds, experimental, etc.

 

I think Jimmy has been the only one to even come close in exploiting its full potential, which makes sense seeing as how he's the inventor having some 30+ years experience with it. Plus not very many are out there, it's kind of sad because there is a lot of potential with a device or setup like this in the right hands. I'm an amateur but it's a lot of fun. I'll record a video in an attempt at highlighting the features I described above in something that has more of a song-like structure and might show how you could do things with it not possible with just any MIDI keyboard.

Edited by Clint Thompson
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Thanks to Sean for bringing this Podcast to my attention again. Believe I had stumbled upon it before but the link was either broken or it didn't link back far enough to the 2008 episodes so never had the chance to actually listen to it until now. Found out that just changing the download title in their link page from the latest episode to 075 works just as well and so there it is: (they start talking about the Hotz at the 5 minute mark)

 

http://www.sonicftp.com/podcasts/sonicstate_talk075.mp3

 

Kind of have mixed feelings on their reactions but in particularly disagree with the guy calling it complete rubbish. Not to ruin it for anyone but it is interesting to hear the different opinions on what various people had thought about the Hotz Box and the backstory of programming the unit for Jon Anderson of Yes had me laughing out loud.

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These photos are 11 years old, so I've updated some things, but you get the idea.

 

475800622_Controller2.thumb.jpg.6abd67dd6715ab74cdd39d33cc9a43c4.jpgcontrollers.thumb.jpg.d9f0e75452d4d37777b64526d20a02be.jpg59582235_Controller1.thumb.jpg.2b9c529eb41dedbffbc5faaf032c71a6.jpgComputer.thumb.jpg.5e6a2b2165f6754d4d959936b86e690a.jpg364310969_AtariHotzTranslator.thumb.jpg.3fd4a9802a33a3dc8200aeaabfd00be6.jpgAll.thumb.jpg.4032a879bf4d504238aac9b57f4897c8.jpg

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Thanks for sharing your studio pictures Crash, digging your rack/gear setup! Looks like you have a nice window view to help inspire creativity = ) Would love to hear some of the songs you've created with the Hotz/Translator sometime, if you feel like sharing. How often would you say you still fire up your Hotz on occasion and do you find yourself still compelled to using it in conjunction with the software more than not? Any moments that still catch you by surprise while using the combo?

 

Realized after a recent correspondence that I hadn't mention Tim's (RIP) Atari MIDI World and he rightfully deserves credit as being one of the original sources for Hotz information I had stumbled upon during the the MyAtari magazine days back around 2001-2004 that helped fuel my original desire for one of these. While Tim never owned one sadly, Jimmy was kind enough to loan him one for a short period of time in which he also had the pleasure of meeting at NAMM in 2004:

 

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Tim also had other good tastes in hardware outside of Atari computers including synth-related curiosities like the Casio DG-20 and the Yamaha TQ5 (both of which now command prices in the $300+ range). Tim would have been a super cool guy to hang out with for sure!

 

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That Yamaha TQ5!

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Here you can see Tim happily set up the Hotz into his studio with Translator software in action on the top ST screen:

timstudmyatari2001.jpg.2d3fce3a6c82a202586b58acb1a822ab.jpg

 

His original site is gone but it appears to be preserved here thankfully with a ton of great information:

http://www.atari-music.fddvoron.name/hotz.htm

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Recent free time has allowed me to finally finish the custom one-off Atari Hotz MIDI Translator Rackmount unit that I had started working on earlier this year. It merges the incoming MIDI data of both large and small Hotz controllers into a single dedicated 1U rackmount space running the original Hotz Translator ST software on MiST FPGA connected to a 24" LCD up top. Wanted it to be simple so that all you do is power it on and it fires away into the Translator program instantly. I had designed the fascia with the Hotz star field promo pamphlet in mind and overall rather happy with the end result considering this is my first time creating a rackmount unit of any kind. Re-creating the Hotz vector logo by hand in itself was a fun few hours to get just right but well worth it in the end!

 

HotzRack1.thumb.jpeg.59a991878ce68f80696353213e556e74.jpegHotzRack3.thumb.jpeg.03d4642cbb4ceeaf64e119cef9c3583a.jpeg

The star field promo sheet I was referring to:

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I've had a few ah-ha moments with the translator now with the time to actually explore more in-depth but man, what a total blast once you get it! It makes me wonder exactly just how Fleetwood Mac actually used it outside of the vest drums and if they ever got on with it as intended from a creative standpoint. Anyways, that ah-ha moment pushed me to hand select and scan a few important or overall more interesting pages from the massive manual to share here as well to give a better glimpse on what Jimmy had envisioned this to be. You can certainly tell how passionate he was about creating this system as a whole and get a sense of the underlying hope of what it could bring in the future.

 

A few additional things of interest to note is that he mentioned future instructional videos that could be purchased (which I do not believe happened but would be entertaining to see if they actually had made them) and that some people use a soft guitar pick to play on the Hotz as if they're strumming a harp or guitar.

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Just arrived in the mail today from Musician Magazine July 1990 for Fleetwood Mac's "Behind The Mask" North American tour campaign:

 

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Hi Folks, Sean McKee here. I've been working with Jon Anderson on various projects for a while now. Back in 2016, he let me take home his smaller standalone Hotz Box. I had been using it with the PC Hotz software running on a Mac through Crossover. I found it to be an inspiring system. For being 30+ years old, it still stands, in my opinion, as one of the greatest MIDI controllers out there. There are modern controllers by other manufacturers that employ intelligent scale/chord layouts, but most of them have rubber buttons that just don't feel right if you're trying to do some quick fiddly bits. I know some people call it cheating or say only unskilled people would use this, which I say is false. I'm an Emmy-nominated composer and multi-instrumentalist and was before I ever tried this thing, and have only gained a deeper understanding of theory and exotic scales and voicings as a result of using this. Just because a device can lay out only technically correct notes for a given scale (and let's not forget chromatics and passing tones), that doesn't mean you will automatically create "good" music. You still need talent for that.

 

So it was mentioned on here that there was a full sized Hotz Box available in Israel. I now have that unit. Having spoke with Jimmy Hotz just today, he confirmed it was the first one he ever sold, and the original owner kept it in mint condition. Having digested about every piece of information and disinformation and videos I could find about these units, one thing struck me: There are a lot of videos out there of people just sliding their fingers along a row at light speed making blinding fast runs, not humanly possible on any other instrument. Some of the comments I've seen regarding this are along the lines of "that's not real music and if that's all you can do on this thing I'm not interested". Some of those videos have done a disservice to educate on the capabilities of the system. But the one thing I haven't seen is a video explaining how the hardware integrates with the software, and how it lays out different things on different rows, like chords on top, scale on next row and individual notes of the chord on the third row, so basically arpeggios laid out.

 

So I plan to make a video just to show how the hardware and software integrate together for those who are curious and interested. To really get the most out of it, you have to get at least a basic understanding of the software, which I have, but it really can run very deep and very customizable. Now I don't do any of the "Hotz Coding", which is taking a song and programming it with the Hotz software to play back and automatically change keys and scales, etc. That's cool and all for jam karaoke, education and inspiration to beginners and kids, but I can't talk about any of those features or how to do it. I use it to create and explore exotic possibilities. Anyway, I'll post back here when I make the video. Hopefully it will demystify the system and clarify how it works, and show you the benefits. It really is an amazing system no matter what your skill level.

 

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BTW, here's a picture of my Hotz setup when I got the main unit. Since the smaller unit doesn't directly integrate and plug in to the larger one like the "wing" does, I've taken it out for now and put a synth in it's place until I figure out if it makes sense to have the smaller one in there. With each row on a different MIDI channel, it makes for an immense live performance system, or Vangelis-like improvisational system, but I use it to write, so don't necessarily need 9 different sounds available in real time...

 

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Here's a quick tune I made on the smaller Atari Hotz wing controller and finally got around to recording last night. It shows the software (Atari ST version) running/overlaid and how it completely re-maps the keyboard in real time so I can play the Stratocaster-like patch from the Roland 2080:
 

 

The first one I recorded a while back but forgot to post here (more of a quick Metal jam) though is less apparent in how the remapping may benefit with no overlay and is probably unnoticeable as a result:

 

 

Edited by Clint Thompson

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Mick, how could you!? ;-) but I do wonder when that clip interview with Fleetwood was recorded, had to have been 1993 - 1996. I only stumbled upon this crazy Zendrum MIDI device this morning but it seemingly had far more interest or people playing it than even the Hotz did, which is interesting since the Hotz controller is a more traditional styled instrument. Possibly due to cost I guess but a used Zendrum is currently going for $1,250 on Reverb right now, because I was curious if they even still existed and were sold.

 

Where's the band that uses a Zendrum, Hotz, Synthaxe and Space Harp at? :D

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If anyone is in or near the Netherlands and interested, OD&D Vintage Audio listed a large Atari Hotz box for €2,499 - looks to be in pretty good condition too!

Find it interesting how far and spread out these units have traveled.

 

https://odnd.nl/instruments-audio-instruments/atari-hotz-midi-translator-tce-r-4299?fbclid=IwAR1rwTuqMLXlbgESB_dgf-4eWaJ-DcCmdYt5u2r2yIvG_lVEzZumulxHVy4

 

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There's also a smaller one on Reverb still that has the price reduced to $1,500 currently in California as well:

 

https://reverb.com/item/34341979-hotz-atari-hotz-box-midi-translator-2005-black-blue-extremely-rare

 

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It seems to me I'll be the owner of the main unit. At least I paid for it....

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22 minutes ago, jvas said:

It seems to me I'll be the owner of the main unit. At least I paid for it....

Very cool, congrats! = ) You're going to have fun with it for sure, looking forward to hearing about your experiences and music made with it!

 

Noticed someone picked up the smaller unit as well.

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