FM4 preset competition – Primal Audio have promo codes up for grabs

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There are all sorts of different types of sound synthesis but, if you are of a certain age, then I expect you will have a fondness for the Yamaha DX series from the 1980s the the FM synthesis engines upon which they were built. If these are sounds you hanker after, then the recent release of Primal Audio's FM4 iOS synth for iPad may well of been of interest. FM4 features - surprise, surprise - a four operator FM synth engine and attempts to model the same gritty sound - albeit within a very … [Read more...]

Scythe review – budget iOS synth from Plastaq Software gets a rebrand

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While the App Store is very well stocked when it comes to iOS synth apps, that doesn’t stop lots of us looking for the next synth to add to our (probably already extensive) collections. When you look at the range of features, price points and different synth engine formats available, there is probably a synth (or three) that would fit everyone’s needs, whether you are a geeky ‘hands dirty’ programmer type or a ‘skim through the presets’ kind of a person. A new (well, sort of new) synth … [Read more...]

B-Step Sequencer 2 Pro update – MonoPlugs step-based MIDI sequencer gets new features and price reduction

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I was both impressed and intrigued when I first saw Monoplug's B-Step Sequencer back in April last year. At one level, this is a 16-step-based step sequencer with four lanes of notes where a project can consist of up to 16 patterns and where you can also sequence those patterns into an overall arrangement. However, at another level, this is quite unconventional as it is, apparently, inspired by a bass guitar and the four lanes of notes are tuned to a specific chord. This means that, once you … [Read more...]

iCathedral Organ sale – 60% off Crudebyte’s mega pipe organ app

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I've reviewed both iSymphonic Orchestra and Oriental Strings from Crudebyte here on the blog before. Both offer high-quality sample-based virtual instruments and, after what was perhaps a bit a shaky start for iSymphonic, once the first significant update arrived with extra sounds included and an IAP to expand the sound set even further, both apps are very good at what they do; at the top-end of the iOS music app price bracket and requiring plenty of storage space for all those samples...  but … [Read more...]

Air Display 3 review – workflow utility for those combining iOS with OSX

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While I tend to focus here on the Music App Blog on iOS-based music production topics, I'm happy to include the occasional desktop product when it has some relevance to the iOS music making. So is was a few weeks ago when I took a look at the Duet Display app. Duet Display allows you to use for iOS device as a secondary display unit with your OSX computer. This is not such a novel feature in itself but what was novel was that the connectivity was achieved via a standard USB link between iOS … [Read more...]

Limiter update – dynamics app from Amazing Noises gets new options

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I've reviewed a number of iOS music apps from Amazing Noises here on the Music App Blog including Reverb FDN, Dedalus and Limiter. All of these apps can do 'subtle and/or conventional' if you want them to but you get the impression that that is not really the primary intention - Amazing Noises seem to like their app to be pushed a bit harder than that :-) The last of these - Limiter - has been updated in the last couple of days. While there may well be some minor tinkering that's gone on in … [Read more...]

AltiSpace update – new presets and other tweaks added to iOS convolution reverb

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The App Store is blessed with a few pretty good reverb apps and I'll regularly reach for any of AUFX:Space, AudioReverb or AD480 Reverb when I need a conventional reverb treatment (as opposed to something more off the wall; then it might be something like Crystalline). All produce results that are far superior to what their respective the price tags suggest ought to be possible. However, since Igor Vasiliev released his convolution-based reverb AltiSpace, when a track or mix element justifies … [Read more...]

Multirhythms Rhythm Trainer giveaway – 20 copies of rhythmic skills trainer app up for grabs

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I’ve often noted here my search for the perfect iOS ‘virtual drummer’ and the main reason for this is that my own drumming skills are perhaps best described as 'basic' :-) There are apps to help with that though and, a couple of weeks ago I reviewed Multirhythms Rhythm Trainer from developer Radicle. The basic premise of the app is that you can create multi-part (that is, several different drums) rhythmic patterns and then, at a tempo of your own choice, practice playing one or more of those … [Read more...]

StepPolyArp giveaway – 20 copies of iOS arpeggiator app up for grabs

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I've mentioned my fondness for arpeggiators on the blog on a number of occasions, a fondness that stems from my less-than-stellar keyboard skills. I also noted last week that on of the 'best in class' -  - the excellent StepPolyPad app from Laurent Colson - was updated with some useful new features. Laurent is also the developer behind ChordPolyPad, absolutely one of my favourite MIDI performance apps. StepPolyArp is both fairly easy to use and well featured...  so if you want an introduction … [Read more...]