I reviewed Igor Vasiliev’s Master FX (UK£7.99) app a few weeks ago when it was first released. Igor has now posed v.1.1 of the app on the iTunes App Store. The update includes the usual array of minor fixes and tweaks including some improvements to the compressor module and a loop mode for playback of audio files within the app.
However, the highlight new feature is support for inter-app audio (IAA) to go alongside the existing Audiobus support. For an app like Master FX – which serves as a flexible ‘all-in-one’ effects unit for routine processing tasks covering delay, reverb, compression, EQ and modulation options, IAA support is a big deal. It makes the app much easier to use in a recording context with DAW hosts such as Auria or Cubasis, either as an insert or send effect.
Having given the update a brief test drive using Cubasis as my IAA host, things seemed to work very smoothly. I had no problems selecting the app as an IAA effect in Cubasis and was able to switch to Master FX to tweak my effects settings as required. Unlike some other IAA apps, Master FX doesn’t offer a transport panel to control your host DAW’s playback. Instead, there is a simple ‘Switch to host’ button (located top-right) that allows you to flip back to your DAW to start/stop playback, etc.
The app now also has a couple of extra colour schemes available if you want a change of look. The ‘white’ option had me reaching for my sun glasses, but the ‘grey’ look (shown in the main screen shot here) with green indicators of the key buttons, is quite easy on the eye when working.
Having reviewed Holderness Media’s Echo Pad earlier this week – and which is also described as a ‘multi-effects processor’ – it is quite interesting to use these two apps side by side. They are very different in approach. Master FX is most definitely an ‘every day’ sort of effects unit, with a suite of standard effects processors that would work in any conventional recording/mixing situation. Echo Pad is, by contrast, much more of a creative, experimental processor. Don’t, therefore, think of these two apps as doing the same job; they don’t… but they do complement each other nicely.
Finally, if you are a new(ish) visitor to the Music App Blog, you might want to check out the reviews of both MasterRecord and Audio Mastering – Igor Vasiliev’s other iOS effects apps. I was impressed by both of these apps and for a touch of analog warmth or to add some final ‘mastering’ punch and sparkle to your stereo mix, both apps have plenty to offer the iOS musician who uses their iPad for multi-track recording duties.