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Midiplus Mirror

Midiplus Mirror  ·  Source: Midiplus

Midiplus Mirror

I'm looking so great, let's do another take.  ·  Source: Midiplus

Midiplus Mirror

The horror...  ·  Source: Midiplus

Midiplus Mirror

Look it has inputs and outputs and everything  ·  Source: Midiplus

Fresh from Taiwanese music technology company Midiplus comes an audio interface designed “through a female perspective and taste”. Stay with us here, it gets better. Mirror is a “glossy treasure box” that offers 1 in and 2 out 24-bit 192kHz high precision sampling – but you don’t want to worry your pretty little head about that, just check out these delightful, eye-shadow inspired knobs.

Mirror

Seriously, it’s “designed for females”. Midiplus says it’s “observed the industry and market” and has decided it lacked the “elegance and charm” that a feminine touch could bring. We haven’t got to the really awesome bit yet. The lip that flips up to reveal the 6 muted shades of fashionably coloured knobs doubles as a vanity mirror with a 5500k LED light source. Sorry if I lost the ladies there with the technical jargon – I think it means it’s quite bright but undoubtedly flattering.

Midiplus Mirror

The horror…

Now being a man and devoid of emotional responses I can poke fun at this all day but that wouldn’t do justice to the level of outrage that should be directed at this product, the makers and whoever it was that thought this would be a good idea. So I contacted someone from the target audience to gauge their reaction. Professional musician Catharina Boutari (aka Puder), once we got through the expletives and WTFs, commented:

Honestly I, as a professional musician, feel embarrassed, that some developer thinks that women need
a) something cute that will reduce their fear of handling technology (or help them get interested in technology?) or
b) to check their make up while creating and recording music.

It feels like I’m being treated as a puppy that wants to play and not as a musician being talked to at eye level.
And that it, in my opinion, is what we women demand: talk to us at eye level, treat us as pros or future pros, design advertising where professional female musicians present gear in a professional way to other women, and you’re gonna sell your shit.

Twitter has also seen a bit of a reaction:

What a terrible, awful, product – I am literally lost for words, and it doesn’t even match my nail polish.

Midiplus Mirror

Look it has inputs and outputs and everything

More information

  • Here’s where to go to experience the whole horror of it – Midiplus Mirror webpage.

Update: Midiplus appear to have pulled the product from their website. Digging into their recent press releases the Mirror was part of a range of products called “Fancy” – that accounts for the “f” on the front of the box. Other products include a natty retro looking audio interface and a weirdly wonderful Keytar in the shape of a giant tuning fork. So they have the ability to design interesting products and it’s a shame that they were so wide of the mark with Mirror.

Midiplus Mirror

A female with her Mirror

17 responses to “Ladies, your audio interface has arrived and it’s called Mirror”

  1. Tons of products are made to appeal to men, no one shames those companies. Someone decided to make a audio interface that looks like a compact and it’s the end of the world. If this looked like a socket set and was targeted as a macho interface no one would care.

    • Uncle Jimmy says:

      Audio/Music gear has been marketed as “macho” for generations, often with little connection to the equipments function/utility. The discontent at this product is that many women have found it challenging to be accepted as equally skilled, capable, or taken seriously in a male dominated industry. Veiling a professional product in a gender based object comes across as pandering. It does little to make the community feel accepted and included on their own merit. And it perpetuates an illogical inbalance in representation.

      • I think most pro audio is gender neutral, and aside from guitar products, sexist advertising has been out of vogue for at least a couple decades, just as hypersensitivity surrounding gender is fashionable now. I think women are strong enough to handle whatever gear exists, and I think they’re strong enough to handle that someone attempted to make a pretty audio interface without the potentially well intentioned keyboard chivalry that pops up around things like this. It’s an option in a sea of other options, shaming the company it because it has offended current sensibilities is censorship.

        The market will make it a success or failure, but if enough angry (probably) men stomp the life out of it before it even gets to market, no one will ever know if this product was helpful or necessary.

        • Robin says:

          With respect I didn’t offer chivalry, I didn’t say what I think women think or what you think women are, I reached out to the target audience and asked their opinion – it’s that which drove the article.

          • Since none of these will probably ever be seen east of the International Date Line anyway, whatever Western women think of it is superfluous. Really, if Western women (and men) are so easily offended by stuff like this they shouldn’t be shopping in Asia to begin with. Just saying.

          • Robin says:

            In which case why was it in English? They’ve pulled the product now so we can perhaps assume that they seem to care about what western women think.

          • Iamme says:

            We’re not “easily offended”. We reject sexism and there’s nothing wrong with that. The onus isn’t on us.

          • No, you judged it harshly at the onset. your outrage was evident, and you’ve helped to kill a creative product because it didn’t suit what you think women should be offered. I think it’s incredibly sad, and what it really is, again, is men telling women what they can and can’t have, patriarchy disguised as empathy coupled with a need to assuage male guilt.

            What should have happened is that it was released and the market decided. This is the same thing that happened to the ‘pussy melter’ pedal, except the unexpected effect was that the Steel Panther dude stuck to his guns and created a product that has since sold out.

            I wish the makers of this had the courage to tell the knights of the internet to shove it and let the people who might have liked or used this product have it. Good job, you’ve helped to prevent that, and if this would have been the gateway to even ONE person, male or female, making music, you have helped to prevent that from happening. There is nothing to be proud of there.

          • Robin says:

            Thankfully mate you’re completely wrong. I didn’t tell anybody anything, I reached out to the target audience and expressed their feelings about it. It was an ill-judged marketing campaign that I am happy to have highlighted and I’m pleased that the company took note and made changes. All I helped prevent was a ridiculously genderised product patronising its audience.

          • Your post is incredibly biased against it, dripping with condescension… you definitely voiced your opinion very strongly, encouraging people to get the pitchforks out. Target audience? The audience for this blog (which I enjoy, by the way, even though I don’t agree with you at all on this product) is largely, I am very confident, middle aged men. Yes, you solicited the advice of apparently ONE female professional, hardly a great sample there, but did you solicit the advice of young women who AREN’T into gear about whether or not this product was appealing or looked fun? No, of course you didn’t, because you don’t want that answer.

            I’m sure you have no issues with, for instance, razors meant for women (typically made to look ‘girly’ or jewelry for women or shoes for women or a million other products meant to look feminine that have counterparts made to appeal to men. This is no different.

            There are differences between men and women, pretending that there are not is diminishing both. We are on the way to a culture where we won’t accept that because we think, wrongly, that every difference is a weakness, and ignorance (and outrage) is strength. There are so many other things that are actually due outrage… FGM, human trafficking/forced prostitution, etc., that the rancor over something as benign as a shiny interface (which I truly think was an attempt to make something cute/fun/attract women into making music) is at best, misplaced, but I really think it’s a creepy, sinister censorship masquerading as empowerment. I appreciate that you have been open enough to post a differing opinion, and, again, overall, I enjoy this page.

          • EmBe says:

            Aw, do you want the girls and all their silly topics to go away from your middle aged manly internet space? So sensitive! Also telling us to care about the really outrageous problems is a false analogy and a diversion tactic. Just…don’t. It’s a bad look and makes for poor conversation.

            Pitchforks? Lol. Such hyperbole! Also, women have been talking about razors made for women for years, and trust me that many who choose to shave know or are learning that the much cheaper razors marketed to men are exactly the same, but like…not pink. Things like, tampons, okay, those probably will be marketed to folks with uteri that bleed on occasion (though the vast and varied gender expression among people who menstruate has been slow to hit marketers). But anything else? Goofy. See the Bic pen fiasco from some years back which this reminded me of.

            Good article, Robin, with well-done tongue-in-cheek humor while also completely understanding why it’s goofy at best and offensive at worst.

  2. Bob says:

    Why are westerners angry at what is arguably a product created for the different, Asian market?

  3. vout says:

    Cool – I’m getting one to record my Daisyrock guitar

  4. Deneteus says:

    Yall are dumb as hell. This device has a market in whatever market they bring it to. The real users would be Instagram models and people that record makeup podcasts. Anybody trying to claim that all other audio interfaces are sexist has some serious psychological problems that need to be worked on. I personally know alot of women that do recording at home for their personal projects from vocals to guitar work to entire albums and they don’t think about Focusrite as sexist. Sometimes people want their gear to look artistic. I would use it but make it look like a Gameboy SP as long as it works most men don’t care really.

    They even said its aimed at a specific group of users for recording Karaoke.
    https://www.prosoundnetwork.com/pro-sound-news-blog/midiplus-addresses-mirror-interface-furor

    • Robin says:

      I think the takeaway point from their statement is the apology and the changes they’ve made to the marketing. In which case it’s a job done – they were called out on the ill-judged marketing and they’ve apologised and taken the criticism onboard – that’s how these things should work.

  5. yike_jia says:

    Thanks for those who suppopt us,when I was informed by a lot of friends that there are some negative news about MIRROR, I was confused,and we are trying our best to make creative products for music maker as well as who would like to play music in other ways,love you guys._______YK from MIDIPLUS instagram@yike_jia

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