I’ve yet to see a full fledged sequencer for iOS that I really want to use. Today the grandfather of sequencers Steinberg bring us Cubasis. Good or not it uses what we musicians know as the traditional sequencer metaphor. I’m really looking forward to try this out but at $49 it’s more than an impulse buy. If it runs smoothly and it’s fun to record and create full songs with this will be very welcome!
“Cubasis is Steinberg’s streamlined, multitouch sequencer for the iPad. Specially designed for quick and easy operation, Cubasis makes recording, editing and mixing a breeze. You can also open your Cubasis projects in Cubase under Windows and OS X! Cubasis places touch-intuitive production tools in your hands, opening up a new world of possibilities for your creativity.” – steinberg.net
Audiobus was released today. It allows multiple iOS music apps to work together. I have found many music apps to be useful but I usually just record one at a time into Ableton. Audiobus opens things up. I’m still not certain I want to be bouncing in and out of Apps but this functionality is certainly welcome. I’m also glad to see many developers working together on it. $9.99
“A Tasty Pixel in partnership with Audanika today launched Audiobus, a revolutionary new app for iPad and iPhone set to reinvent iOS music making with its ability to connect music apps together, just as cables connect audio equipment. Support for the app is already built into such leading iOS music apps as Rebirth, JamUp, NLog, Sunrizer and more, with over 750 more developers registered to implement Audiobus in their own music apps.” – audiob.us
Anything that has a Forcefield Mode has to be a little cool no? Robert Tubb’s Masters degree project The Wablet has such a mode. Another good iPad app for glitch and drones.
“Scanned Synthesis is a way of generating complex tones by scanning an interactive model of a physical vibrating system. Scanned synthesis provides a good solution to some of the main issues in digital musical instrument design, and is particularly well suited to multi-touch screens.In this implementation, animated, vibrating mass-spring networks with a wide variety of configurations can be displayed. These can be manipulated by touching, dragging and altering the orientation of the tablet. Arbitrary scanning paths can be drawn onto the structure using the fingers.” – Robert Tubb
Korg has released iPolysix an iPad version of it’s classic Polysix synthesizer. Unlike the original there is a step sequencer, drum machine, chordal mode, Soundcloud sharing and Kaoss type effects pads. About $15 USD.
“iPolysix is an analog polyphonic synthesizer that’s been carefully designed to take full advantage of the 7.9-inch display of the new iPad mini as well as the iPad. Bringing together a sequencer, drum machine, and even a mixer, it transforms your iPad or iPad mini into the ultimate analog synth studio. Pack an amazing set of early-’80s analog equipment into your iPad, and time-travel back to the dawn of polyphonic synthesizers!” – Korg
Here is another great addition to the iPad’s music making app library. Gestrument puts music on a grid with pulses increasing in speed as you swiped left and right. Add a second finger and the pulse, volume and other parameters increase the further away your two fingers are places. Now imaging multiple instruments under your finger each playing notes according to a set of user definable parameters. Watch this video to see all this in action.
“Improvise or compose within the scales and rhythms you choose. Use parameters like pulse density, scale morphing, rhythm randomness or pitch fluctuation to find new paths for your musical expression and creativity. Use the tutorials or define your own settings to fit the musical style you want to play and compose in. Play on up to eight instruments at once – all with different individual settings.” – gestrument.com
I’m addicted to Samplers. I once owned a Roland S-50 and then an Akai S-950. A Make Noise Phonogene is on my must have list. iOS has some great and fun Samplers such as sir Sampleton, SampleWiz, sampletoy, iSample, SingingFingers and I am Sampler. Now you can at Samplr to the list and it looks like the most full featured yet. The iPad’s touch screen really makes sense here with 7 ways to play with the sample. Watch the videos above for the details. $4.99 USD.
“Samplr lets you make music and play with sound in a new and intuitive way by touching the waveform on the screen directly with your fingers.” – samplr.net
Take a look at the last post I did (link). See that video? Now check out the video above. I took the same sounds and put them into the Borderlands granular synthesis app. From a retro melody using analog hardware futuristic noise. I think it starts to get good around the 2:15 mark.
“Granular synthesis is a basic sound synthesis method that operates on the microsound time scale. It is based on the same principle as sampling. However, the samples are not played back conventionally, but are instead split into small pieces of around 1 to 50ms. These small pieces are called grains. Multiple grains may be layered on top of each other, and may play at different speeds, phases, volume, and frequency.” – Wikipedia
Borderlands is a granular synthesizer app for the iPad. It’s been highly anticipated since it was announced. It has a beautiful and futuristic interfaces. Watch the tutorial above, grab this app and most importantly load your own samples into it. Available now (iTunes link).
“Explore, touch, and transform sound with this new interface for granular synthesis, a technique that involves the superposition of small fragments of sound, or grains, to create complex, evolving timbres and textures. Borderlands emphasizes gestural interaction over knobs and sliders. Create, drag, and throw pulsing collections of grains over a landscape of audio files, or use the built-in accelerometer to sculpt sound with gravity. Record, save, and share performances via SoundCloud. Borderlands comes ready to play with default sample content included, but you can load your own sounds too.” – borderlands-granular.com
Impaktor is an iOS drum app. Very simply you put your device on a table and then hit the table to play drums. When this came out a few weeks ago everyone said it was amazing but since I’m not a drum circle kind of guy I overlooked it. Big mistake. This is a wicked app! There are two things that make it so great. First your drum taps and strikes are picked up by the iPhone/iPad very sensitively. Very light brushes of the hand and extreme punches to the table make the sound quite different. Next the drum synth is very good. There are some really futuristic synth sounds and metal clangs to play with. You can record your performances and more. This is one of those oh wow cool apps. Use with microphoneless loud headphones.
“Impaktor is a drum synthesizer with a vast sonic palette, that turns any surface into a playable percussion instrument.” – beepstreet.com
Qneo Voice Synth is another good audio app to have in your iOS music making arsenal. I’ve been using it quite a bit adding an extra vocal bit here and there on my tracks. The app is pretty slick and the audio is good. Try having this and Samplewiz’s audio plugged into your DAW. You will get some different results rather than simply resampling ITB.
“Voice Synth is a specialized synthesizer for creative voice sculpting, for endless fun and serious productions. Speak, sing, hum and beatbox in the mic, tweak the controls and turn your voice live into a human from baby to tenor, a popstar on AutoPitch, a robot from Cylon to iDalek, a church or close harmony choir, animals from birds to dogs and lions, musical instruments from organs, guitars and a groovy bass to percussions and rich 70?s vocoders, ambient, lush string/storm soundscapes. All effects applied simultaneously, polyphonic and live in real-time with low-latency. One app, two interfaces: dedicated interface for iPad, and a compact interface for iPhone and iPod that includes all features” – qneomusic.com