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Making the Magnet — have any design feedback?

We're making some final tweaks to get the Magnet ready to manufacture. Ideas? Let us know!

By November 15, 2019 News
Closeup of Magnet mounted on a guitar neck

Nearly five years after our first Kickstarter attempt, we think it may be time for another go at getting the Magnet manufactured!

The Magnet is that red camera mount you’ve probably seen clamped onto a guitar neck in our lessons and interviews. It’s an awesome tool for filming your technique, and it works with any smartphone. 

We designed and prototyped it ourselves, and have had DIY instructions available for a while, but it’s expensive and time-consuming to make. We want to make an affordable version that anyone can buy and use as a tool to learn more about your playing.

As part of preparing for a possible manufacturing run, right now we’re taking a look at some small design tweaks. We’d love your feedback!

Twin Tweaks

One design tweak we’re making is to reverse the orientation of the Magnet, so it faces the bridge instead of the headstock. This way, when the Magnet expands, even with large phones, you won’t lose any more space on the fretboard.

Troy fastening the Magnet to the guitar

If those upper-fret arpeggios get out of control, our next design enhancement has you covered. Sometimes the phone shifts around during aggressive playing, or the Magnet gets bumped, and we wanted to address this possibility. So we’re adding a strap! With one simple drawstring, you can lock the phone in the Magnet, and the Magnet on the guitar neck, at the same time.

Magnet viewed from below with safety strap wrapping around the guitar neck

These two tweaks work together — we’ve been doing a lot of testing, and it turns out reversing the orientation is also what helps make it possible for the strap to better secure the Magnet.

Five years on, we’re amazed this design still works so well. The dual-expansion nature is uniquely functional and has proven itself time and again. And the goal is for the mass produced version to work even better — better tolerances, smoother operation, and just overall nicer to use.

Magnet Feedback

Right now we’re polishing our prototype and looking into getting some new quotes from factories. If all goes well, we’ll aim to do a new Kickstarter next year. For now, a couple quick questions for you!

If you have a DIY Magnet:

Anything you’ve noticed about the Magnet design and how it’s been working? Let us know if you have any suggestions or issues we may want to address. We probably can’t make any huge changes, but we’ll see what we can do!

If you don’t have a Magnet:

What do you think…excited by the prospect of a mass-manufactured Magnet? Other thoughts / feedback welcome! We’ve gathered feedback in the past but it’s been a while, and we’d love any thoughts and impressions you may want to share.

Please share your comments in the forum discussion, linked below!

Top Comments

  1. I’d invest in one. Please make it work on left handed guitars though. :slight_smile:

  2. I’ve made the 3D printed Magnet and the improvement I’d like to see is a thumb screw type arrangement to tighten the phone clamp rather than it being spring loaded.
    Trying to pull and hold the magnet open with one hand to load the phone without pulling the magnet off the neck or moving its location is kinda fiddly.
    If a manufactured version were to slide much more smoothly than the 3D version that might also solve the problem.
    Although I have the 3D magnet I’ll sign up for a new and improved one.
    Thanks

  3. First of all we need to understand what the magnet actually is. Yes, it’s a phone mount for a guitar….but reallly it’s only a part of a tool.
    Tool to understand and build your playing technique. Noone said that it will be easy, but the reality comparing to the Cracking the Code videos is really different.
    Open any of the cracking the code videos and compare it with the experience when using magnet. Video shows us the ideal workflow for practicing when we see everything without a delay. Reality shows us that between filming a few second lick and watching it on a computer we need to struggle for about a minute. It’s not much but if we’re practicing - we need to see our every try to analyze it.
    If wee have a 5 second long lick that we want to practice: It takes less than a minute to play it 10 times, but it would take more than 10 minutes to film every try of it,export every try to pc or mac, open it and actually analyze.

    At this point i hope that you’re getting my idea.

    The ideal magnet bundle should be:
    1-The Magnet
    2-iOS / Android Camera Client Software
    3-PC/ Mac Camera server software
    +(optional) small stomp box with usb interface just for shortcuts

    1- i already explained
    2- there are a lot of apps which allow you to use Phone as a wireless webcam.problem is that they just stream 30fps video. Magnet app should film slo-mo video(triggered by the server sofware ) and send it wirelessly to a computer app as soon as filming is finished.

    And that’s basically it.

    3- Computer server software is more complex.
    Basic features:
    -it sends start/stop recording command to a phone.
    -automatically imports and opens the slo-mo video as soon as recording is finished.
    Advanced features:
    -Integration with Cracking the code series. All the lessons will contain video practice files specially for the magnet app. You can watch and compare your video with any other magnet footage in splitscreen mode or by merging 2 pictures*
    *App should allow you to fine tune the beat and to fine tune the picture perspective.

  4. Disclaimer. I am not a software engineer, i have a degree in medicine, programming is an old hobby.

    back in 2012when i was a poor student ii bought myself an Axe Fx II, it literally cost me everything. i had no money for foot controller. So i decided to build it myself. At this time i didn’t know anything about arduino. few months later i had my first prototype.

    And in a month later it was inside a shoe box


    Then with a working screen

    Then in a metal box

    And the latest and the tastiest - with reverceenginered stickers

    The point of this story is to show that even with minimal knowledge i was able to build this kind of thing from scratch. 0 lines of code were used from different projects. If you’ll find the right person for writing the app -i am sure that the first beta could be done in less than a week.

Continue the discussion at The Cracking the Code Forum

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