Ops review – Jonathan MacKenzie brings his take on a modular synth for iOS

I make this confession regularly on the blog – I’m no great expert when it comes to synth programming – and such a confession is all the more apt when we are taking about not just programming synths but actually designing your own synth from scratch. Yes, modular synths, of which we have a good few examples available under iOS, are something that are, at any detailed level, well out of my comfort zone. That doesn’t mean I’m not interested though and I’ve reviewed a number of such apps here on … [Read more...]

Baervaag review – Klevgränd add an FM synth to their iOS AU instruments collection

I've reviewed a number of iOS music apps from Klevgränd Produktion here on the blog over the last year or two - Vandelay, Squashit, Svep, Roverb, Enkl, Weeel, Korvpressor, PressIt,  Esspresso, Jussi, Haaze and Pads. A number of these are also available in an AU plugin format for these working on an OSX desktop system and Klevgränd took a pretty bold step a few months ago when the also added AU support under iOS; it was great to see... and, in every case, I've been hugely impressed with the … [Read more...]

GoBeats update – Positive Grid add further features to their iOS AI drummer/jam app

Positive Grid are well known within the iOS music making world for their highly regarded guitar rig/amp modelling software with BIAS Amp and BIAS FX being the current flagship products. Having started with iOS, they are, however, one of the few iOS developers that have attempted to 'go the other way' and expand their product line into the desktop world. Equally, they have also moved into hardware and their latest product - the BIAS Head amplifier - is an ambitious undertaking, especially as they … [Read more...]

ReSlice review – VirSyn deliver a slice of pure genius for iOS musicians

If you have hung around these pages for any length of time you will have a pretty clear idea of my own preferences when it comes to my personal iOS musical toolkit. I’m a guitar playing, synth using (my keyboard skills are basic), recording nut with a soft spot for working with audio loops and drum instruments (acoustic or electric) that give me rhythmic options that my limited (but improving) drum skills don’t allow me to play live. I’m perhaps less into really deep synths or self-assembly … [Read more...]

Guitarism updated – Rhism bring their playable guitar app up to date

Well, today has already been quite an interesting one for my personal iOS music app preferences. Not only has Oscilab (a long-term favourite) recieved a welcome update after a period of quiet, but  Guitarism by Rhism (another long-term favourite) has also been updated. I reviewed Guitarism quite some time ago and the basic principle of how the app is played hasn't really changed too much since then so, if you are new to the app, then have a look through the original review to get up to speed. … [Read more...]

Miroslav Philharmonik 2 IAP review – can you cram an orchestra into an IOS app?

If money is no object, then you can take your pick of some truly wonderful sample-based virtual instruments for Windows/OSX that bring the sound of a full orchestra to your computer (actually, if money is no object, you would book a real orchestra, but that’s a different conversation!). At their very best – and full-exploited by a skilful composer – most listeners might find it difficult to distinguish between the computer-generated musical performance and ‘the real thing’, especially if they … [Read more...]

Sensual Sax review – Embertone port their sensual sax to iOS

As I mentioned a couple of days ago, Embertone - with collaboration from Blue Mangoo (a developer well know to iOS musicians through their iFretless apps) - have released a new virtual saxophone instrument for iOS. Creating realistic sounding solo instruments from samples can be quite a challenge. Sensual Sax is a sample-based virtual instrument any is launched at a fairly modest UK£3.99/US$4.99 price point. Embertone's background is in desktop virtual instruments and they have a line of … [Read more...]

Troublemaker review – Bram Bos delivers a dose of 303 inspired trouble in an iOS AU-ready app

As I mentioned yesterday, Bram Bos has just delivered a new iOS music app to the App Store to tempt us with. The choice of name - Troublemaker – suggests this is going to be an app with a certain amount of attitude. I’ll come back to that issue later but, as the app is a synth that attempts to capture the essence of Roland’s famous (infamous?) TB-303 hardware ‘bass’ synth – the synth that perhaps launched the whole ‘Acid’ music genre on its own – then Troublemaker is bound to make a lot of iOS … [Read more...]

Redshrike review – iceWorks add an iPhone-friendly synth to their app collection

There are, of course, no shortages of iOS music apps that offer virtual synthesis and we are blessed with some fabulous synth apps that run on the iPad. While most iOS musicians will have a number of the obvious candidates installed on their iPads, there are plenty of very creditable alternatives to some of the more profile and well-established competition. A few of these slightly left-of-centre options are Lorentz, Laplace and Mersenne from iceGear/iceWorks. All of these synths are slightly … [Read more...]