In the past two weeks, three of the leading iOS music apps received vital updates that significantly enhance their functionality. If you want to learn more about Korg Gadget, Stroke Machine, and Thor, check out our previous articles here at TabMuse. Read on further to get the latest news about these updates.
Korg Gadget adds Landscape Mode, Ableton Live Support, Two New Gadgets
Two new gadgets highlight the recent update to Korg’s Gadget beatmaker app. Unfortunately, Abu Dhabi and Bilbao are only available through in-app purchase, and are priced a bit too high at $9.99 each. For an app — already including 15 gadgets — that normally costs $40, $4.99 makes much more sense as a price point for an individual gadget.
The new gadgets are suitable for anyone using samples in their music. Abu Dhabi is a cool looking beat slicer, and Bilbao is sample player that follows the same mapping as Gadget’s London drum machine, making it easy to swap out one for the other in a project. Surprisingly, Bilbao has no capabilities to use a mic to record samples on the fly — an oversight by Korg. Both gadgets allow the importing of your own samples.
Support for landscape mode is a great addition. Considering my affinity for Korg’s iPolysix and iMS-20 apps, the original portrait-only orientation of Gadget never felt quite right. It’s easy to switch between the two using the accelerometer.
Other enhancements in this Gadget update include upgraded support for external MIDI controllers — something I can’t wait to check out once I get a new iPad. (The 30-pin connector in my iPad 2 only works for charging these days.) Korg also added integration with Ableton Live, making it easy to port projects from Gadget to Live. Native 64-bit audio support rounds out the new features.
Stroke Machine wears the iOS Drum Machine Mantle
Wolfram Franke has been burning the midnight oil and the result is version 2.0 of his incredibly deep iOS drum machine app, Stroke Machine. The ability to compose beats in any time signature known to beast is the big selling point of this update to me — not that I use them all. A pad screen allows you to play beats with a noticeable lack of latency sure to make Android owners extremely jealous.
Stroke Machine’s stability is also greatly improved; I regularly write beats with nary a glitch or crash. Still, this is a professional-level music app that gets the most out of the resource-constrained environment of the iPad, so iPad Air owners can expect to enjoy the best performance.
Audiobus 2.1 support allows the saving of kits and patterns within an AB patch. Fresh support for MIDI CC learn enhances the app’s use with external MIDI controllers. Additionally, each sound/voice can now use its own MIDI channel. Boom!
Thor also adds Audiobus 2.1 Support
The excellent iOS version of Thor, Propellerheads’ synth originally introduced as part of Reason, also received a fresh update recently. The most notable changes involve support for Inter App Audio and Audiobus 2.1. Now, like with Stroke Machine, Thor’s patch details can be stored as part of an Audiobus project. Other bug fixes and performance improvements come along for the ride.
So there you have it, three important updates sure to make music creation on an iPad more fun and rewarding. After watching a video of someone using Gadget’s Abu Dhabi beat slicer, I am inspired to check it out. When I do, expect a more detailed review here at TabMuse.