Redshrike updated – iceWorks iPhone-friendly synth goes universal and AU

Download from iTunes App Storeredshrike-logo-1There 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 quirky in terms of the synth engine design and, as a result, they do have a fairly distinctive sound….  and, if you know anything about the history of science, then you will also see the theme in the names as both apps have been christened after highly regarded scientific figures.

More recently, iceGear added another virtual instrument app; Redshrike. This came with one design feature that certainly attract the interest of some; it is designed from the ground up to run on the iPhone rather than the iPad. So, if you really do like to make your music technology as mobile as possible….  and want a serious synth engine that you can carry in your pocket…. then Redshrike, which I reviewed when it was first released, was well worth a look.

Redshrike; now universal and seen here running stand-alone on my iPad Pro test system….

Anyway, a major update to the app appeared on the App Store yesterday taking it to v.2.0.0. As well as some more minor fixes and improvements, there are two headline features for the update. First, the app is now universal and, while it scaled up fine to fun on an iPad before, it is now optimised for both platforms. Second, and this is perhaps of wider interest to many iOS musicians, iceGear have now made Redshrike available as an iOS AU plugin.

I’m sure many of us are more than a little impatient to see the progression of AU turn from a steady stream to a full-on flood….  but, that said, it’s great to see another developer take the plunge with the format…  and, hopefully, it might also mean that Lorentz, Laplace and Mersenne are in line for the AU treatment.

Yay! Redshike now runs as an AU plugin :-)

I’ve only had time to give the update a quick spin in Cubasis and AUM as an AU plugin but, in both cases, it seemed to work well. iceGear have, on the whole, handled the transition of the UI to the compact AU format very well. The main control panel for the synth engine simply scrolls left/right within the AU window. Perhaps the only slightly awkward element is the arpeggiator page. This has to be scrolled up/down to see all the features….  understandable given the constraints of the AU UI in most AU hosts but a bit of a shame. Even so, it’s great to see another synth with a serious engine under the hood survive the transition into AU pretty much intact and still easy to use.

Multiple instances ran smoothly within AUM…..

The stand-alone version now (without scaling up) looks great on my iPad Pro also. Other changes in the update include support for Audiobus State Saving, more options for sharing presets, the addition of a swing parameter for the arpeggiator (nice!) and some refinements to the MIDI mapping system. This includes the option for adding CC of Aftertouch control (if your MIDI keyboard supports it) to multiple parameters for real-time control, of the synth. It works very well and the option to add aftertouch control to multiple parameters will undoubtedly appeal to those that like to get expressive with their performance.

The Arp display is a bit clunky under AU but, otherwise, iceGear have done a great job in porting the UI over to the more compact AU window available in most hosts.

Feel free to check out the original Redshrike review as the majority of that is still relevant to v.2.0. If you have not yet taken the plunge, then with the app now being universal, and currently being on sale for just UK£5.99/US$5.99, this really is a good time to pick up a treat. You can also check out the v.2.0.0. preview video below for a quick demo…. and then hit the Download button to find out more via the App Store…..


Download from iTunes App Store

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    1. Well, I wanted it, but refused to buy it originally due to lack of iPad native support.
      Redshrike in now available (finally) for iPad as well and throws in AU compatibility as well.
      Needless to say, I’ve bought it instantly.
      Love it :)

      • Hi Leslie…. it is a cool sounding synth with enough options to keep programmers happy….. The AU support is, on the whole, well done…. Fingers crossed iceGear do AU with their other iOS synths…. Very best wishes, John

    2. Great move. Enjoyed this synth but now it will be awesome with AU!

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