Gibson's been riding the wave of tech for quite a while now -- launching several "robot" guitars featuring functions such as fully automated tuning systems. For that, we give them credit: guitar purists are a tough bunch, and one that is most definitely resistant to change. So we can't help but welcome (on principle alone) the Firebird X, even if our standard Firebird is way, way better looking. The Firebird X -- which will retail for about $5,500 when it launches in December -- features the robo-tuning head found on the Dark Fire, and a seriously sick range of built-in effects, including modulation, echo, reverb, compression, EQ, and distortion. Hey, purists may grimace at that non-Firebird headstock, but let them: you'll be jamming with some sweet effects.

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Gibson announces $5,500 Firebird X robot guitar