Navichord update – refinements added to the excellent iOS chord and harmony exploration app

Download from iTunes App Storenavichord logoI reviewed Navichord here on the Music App Blog back in September 2014. The original release was designed to do one job – it allowed the user to explore chord structures and progressions and possible melodic association – but the design is so simple and elegant that, even though it was (at that stage) more of an educational tool or idea pad, rather than an actual musical instrument, it is a pleasure to use.

The first major update – taking the app to v.1.1 – turned the app into a ‘MIDI performance app’, with MIDI out being the key new feature turning Navichord into rather a nice MIDI performance tool for creating MIDI data to drive other iOS synths or to send to a DAW/sequencer for recording.

Further updates have come in a bit of a flurry over the last 3 months with v.2.0+ bringing a new chord pad system, chord presets, updating of the Audiobus SDK, new internal sounds, a metronome, a sequencer for use with the chord pads, Ableton Link and MIDI input options. The later offer MIDI Learn for the chord pads and a channel split for chord so you could set up some quite sophisticated MIDI control options.

Navichord now offers a 'grid links' options so you can more easily visualise how a chord is constructed.

Navichord now offers a ‘grid links’ options so you can more easily visualise how a chord is constructed.

A further update – taking the app to v.2.0.6 – appeared on the App Store yesterday. Aside from the usual bug fixes, this also brings a couple of notable refinements. First, in the main display, you can now toggle on/off visual ‘grid links’ that allow you to more easily see the chord construction. These links are show whether you are using the original Navichord layout or the Chord Pad system. Second, you can now also specify the MIDI channel used for any MIDI Learn actions.

You can now also specify the MIDI channel used for MIDI Learn operations.

You can now also specify the MIDI channel used for MIDI Learn operations.

Navichord really is a very cool tool and, because of the way the note buttons are arranged in the upper portion of the display, you can quickly learn quite a lot about chord construction or, with the MIDI out features, create a MIDI performance with another app or onto your desktop computer. The chord pads are also easy to configure so this is great for budding songwriters or if you want to transpose a chord sequence from one key to another.

You can read the original Navichord review here but, now priced at UK£5.99/US$7.99, the app is very good value for money and well worth checking out on the iTunes App Store.

Navichord



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