Comparing musical instruments online is a bit like judging a recipe by a picture of the final dish. It may be possible to make a good guess, but the impression will be incomplete without the ability to taste – or, in this case, hear. TonePedia has set out to change this. The Bremen-based start-up has developed a web-based player that can authentically reproduce the sound of guitars, effect products and amplifiers.
This could revolutionise the market for musical instruments. Think that might be an exaggeration? At the Frankfurt music fair in spring 2015, the three founders of TonePedia introduced the concept to the music business, armed with little more than a prototype on a laptop. No stand, no meetings, no professional presence. The result? Four contracts with large music companies.
“Our idea was an immediate hit,” says Hajo. The 35-year-old, who was born in Münster and is currently living in Berlin, is one of the three founders of TonePedia. He started the business in spring 2017 with Elad Yaacov and Baffour Nkrumah, and together with their two employees they occupy an inconspicuous backyard shed in Bremen Airport-Stadt. At first glance, the premises look a little makeshift, but appearances are deceptive. Inside there is a state-of-the-art sound studio.
“We want to get as close to the real thing as possible,” says Hajo, who is responsible for sales and marketing. They are not searching for the best sound, that would be too subjective. What they are looking for is the authentic sound of the instruments. To help with this ambition, professional musicians regularly come to Bremen to accurately record music samples on a range of guitar models. The TonePedia engineers then feed the audio samples through effect products and amplifiers using their proprietary software and methods they have developed themselves to capture all combinations for the audio player. This creates the perfect symbiosis of sounds and bytes.
Musicians can compare guitars online using the samples and combine them with effect products and amplifiers. To date, the team at TonePedia has digitalised 200 instruments and pieces of equipment, allowing a huge range of settings in the TonePedia player. “There are around 1,300 guitar manufacturers and around 3,600 effect-product manufacturers globally, so there’s still a long way to go,” Hajo adds.
The player is used on the websites of manufacturers and dealers in musical instruments, for which they pay a licence fee, and adapted to each product range. “Dealers are increasingly using content instead of traditional advertising to reach their target groups – they want to provide added value for the user. By using our player, dealers can increase the time users spend on their sites,” Hajo says. Visitors spend more time on websites that encourage interaction. The web player also reduces the number of returns, as musicians no longer have to order and hope for the best. It comes as no surprise, therefore, that TonePedia is generating huge interest.
The founders themselves share a background in music. Israeli Elad Yaacov is a successful musician, and Hajo was a keyboard player for many years before switching to music management. “Music is in our blood – reproducing the true sound of equipment and instruments is our main concern,” says Hajo. Yaacov and Hajo met by chance on a train: “When we had to get off, it was like we’d known each other for years. Our interests and skills were a perfect match.”
There are good reasons why TonePedia is based in Bremen, as Hajo explains: “Our investors are based in and around Bremen, and the city gives us the opportunity to get noticed. Berlin and Munich are just too crowded, but in Bremen we quickly found the right premises and received the support we needed to get off to a good start.”
The development of the software was supported by BAB, the development bank for Bremen and Bremerhaven, through its LIP Bremen regional investment programme. The three founders are also planning to apply for support from the research and development programme to fund further features for their player. “Bremen’s on the up. We’ve noticed that things are happening here and that people are very committed. BAB and Bremeninvest helped us a lot with the search for premises and with establishing contacts,” says Hajo.
The TonePedia team is busy looking for new partners and customers, recording more instruments and equipment, and improving the software. “We want to enable our customers to perform ‘big data’ analyses, and we’re hoping to open up new business models. At some point, we’ll also give other instruments a go,” Hajo adds, looking to the future. It may be some time before an entire orchestra can be heard in the TonePedia player, but it certainly won’t be quiet in Bremen Airport-City in the meantime.
For further information on creative industries and business start-ups, contact Anke Jacobj, tel: +49 (0)421 3613 2173, email@example.com
To find out more about Bremen Airport-City, please contact Andreas Zimmermann, business services and sales, project manager for the south Bremen region, tel: +49 (0)421 960 0124, firstname.lastname@example.org
Businesses and entrepreneurs looking for suitable sites can contact Bremeninvest’s relocation service for more information: Thomas Hofhans, tel: +49 (0)421 960 0151, email@example.com.
Bremen-based Flyline can look back on two decades of success and expansion. The British Airways (BA) subsidiary began as a call centre with a 30-strong workforce. Today, Flyline employs around 400 people at Bremen airport.
Artificial intelligence is becoming part of everyday life, and Bremen-based companies are leading the way. We have put together a ‘who’s who’ in artificial intelligence in Bremen.
Whether they involve flying around virtual spaces or manipulating reality, augmented and virtual reality open up new dimensions. A number of companies in Bremen are working on these technologies, and one of them is even the global leader in its market.
From one side of the Atlantic to the other: two graduates from New York University travel to Bremen for a research internship – and immediately want to stay.
DIGILAB Brennerei 4.0 supports companies on their digitalisation journey with free and independent services. Getting started has never been easier.
Bremen’s IT sector is an important pillar of the local industry. We introduce ten IT service providers.
The state of Bremen covers 420 square kilometres and is home to around 670,000 people. Almost 22,000 companies provide more than 325,000 jobs. Below, we introduce some of the strong sectors that that make Bremen such an excellent business location.
The best of both worlds. A young Indian from Bremen is helping German engineering to benefit from India’s factory capacities and vice versa. And everything is completely digitalised – with one click in real time, an order can be sent straight to the Indian factory. The benefit for manufacturers is huge.
How is the role of media and other forms of communication changing in society? What are the resulting challenges? The international MA in Digital Media and Society, which launches at the University of Bremen in time for the winter semester, aims to provide the answers.
Airbus is a global trailblazer in the field of 3D printing, and the aerospace company has established a technology centre for this new production method in Bremen. This is one of many reasons why the Hanseatic city has become a hub for 3D printing in Europe.
Wherever Urbanscreen appear with their projectors, astonishing "Ahhs" and "Ohhs" are guaranteed. It is good that they also record their works of art on video – we have selected the ten most beautiful.
Disposable plastic cutlery is a cheap and practical solution for barbecues or children’s birthday parties. But this wasteful use of resources is a big problem for the environment. BlumBio Solutions has proven that there is an eco-friendly alternative.
It was a cold February evening when Paramjit Kohli first came to Bremen from India – and he loved it immediately. Read on to find out why he founded a company here and what lessons he has learned over the past year.
The construction of the complex new EcoMaT research and technology centre at Airport-Stadt Bremen is at an advanced stage. Prospective tenants include Airbus and Testia, as well as a number of leading medium-sized businesses and scientific institutions. After the topping-out ceremony, work will get under way on the interior of the building.
The depths of the ocean remain one of the last great mysteries on Earth. What is the precise composition of the seafloor? What flora and fauna inhabit it? Where has the delicate balance of the ecosystem been seriously disrupted? We still don’t have complete answers to any of these questions, but four young scientists from Bremen are aiming to change that.
Bremen has the right location to suit any company, from the logistics sector at the Cargo Distribution Center (GVZ) to research institutes at the Technology Park and international companies at Bremen Airport-Stadt. Or perhaps you are looking for more of a mix of sectors to stimulate creativity? We can show you the right business park to suit your needs.
Even Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible would find it difficult to break into this data centre. Metre-thick concrete walls are just one of the many security measures protecting this bunker.
Unloading shipping containers requires manual work, which is pretty unusual in the automated and digitalised world of logistics. But a Bremen-based research project aims to change all this with its IRiS robot.
How will we be working in the future? Daimler’s Innolab in Bremen’s Überseestadt district provides an answer to this question. And anyone can come and see it.
In April 2018, Team Beverage AG moved its headquarters from Wildeshausen in Lower Saxony to Bremen. The company provides services to the drinks industry in wholesale, retail and the catering and convenience sectors. Now, its success story is set to continue at Bremen Airport-Stadt with the relocation of its head office and 90 or so employees.
Bremen Airport-Stadt is an international transport hub and a centre of excellence for the aerospace industry and for research and learning. It occupies a leading position among Germany’s airport locations. Here are ten benefits that Bremen Airport-Stadt offers.
In December 2014, ORTEC GmbH moved from Lower Saxony to Bremen. The software specialist hoped to strengthen its market position by moving to the city’s Überseestadt district. Around three and a half years later, we got in touch with the company again to ask whether the move has been a success.
Fatih Özdemir has furniture made in Turkey and sells it to customers mainly in Africa and the Middle East. In theory, he could run his business from anywhere in the world, but there are good reasons why he chose to relocate to Bremen and found Brefeo Hanse GmbH.
Is this what sales assistants of the future will look like? Bremen start-up company Blackout Technologies develops software based on artificial intelligence, unlike any other software in Europe. Before long, we’ll be greeted by their robot Pepper in shops, at trade fairs or even in care homes. We visited Bremen’s robot lab to find out more.
The research alliance ROBEX is sending robots up active volcanoes and down into the deepest and darkest seas. Working across disciplines, the 120 scientists of the 16 institutes involved are breaking new ground on this project. They have been eagerly waiting to find out what has happened to the TRAMPER diving robot, which has been exploring the deep seas around Spitsbergen for a year. Now they are ready to bring it back.
A growing number of companies are becoming more aware of their social and environmental footprint, and are looking for ways to act with greater environmental and social responsibility. Germany’s north-west is set to become the national centre for social entrepreneurship in logistics. A new platform is under development and the first round of events is being planned to achieve this goal.
This new master’s degree at Bremerhaven University of Applied Sciences prepares students for the future and offers them excellent job prospects.
BLG Logistics Group is a major player in logistics with 18,000 employees. It established the Digilab in Bremen as a core element of its digitalisation. The company’s premises are reminiscent of start-ups in Silicon Valley, and there are good reasons for that.
FabLab Bremen invites visitors to learn about new manufacturing technologies and try their hand at everything from laser cutters to printing and programming. Digital technology enthusiasts of all ages and programmers of all abilities are welcome here. And it is not long before they can put what they have learnt to good use.
The founders of Mac Panther Materials, two brothers from Bremen, produce an open-cell metal foam for use in a number of different applications. Its secret lies in the production process that is based on a brilliant and yet simple idea.
Photography studios, workshops and professional kitchens are rarely fully occupied round the clock. So why not let others share them? The german start-up Craftspace brings together providers of production spaces with entrepreneurs, small business owners and artists on a single online platform. It’s an arrangement that benefits everyone.
A great deal of manual labour goes into aircraft construction. Despite this – or perhaps even because of it – Airbus is changing its approach to make increased use of digital technologies. It’s also researching the applications of new manufacturing technologies such as 3D printing. And not a moment too soon, as Airbus’ site manager in Bremen, Dr André Walter, explains in our interview.
The Chinese designer Haoyu Li combines his German design degree with Chinese business acumen. Now he is opening a design office in Bremen, with the aim of making it easier for Chinese products to enter the German market, and to bring German brands to China.
What makes an aircraft fly? You don't have to be an aerospace expert to be fascinated by what goes on behind the scenes at one of the largest aircraft construction companies in the world. The Airbus Group in Bremen turns the dream of flying into ...