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Underwhelmed with iOS Music Apps?

For iOS (iPhone, iPad & iPod), Android, Windows Phone, etc. App and Hardware talk

Moderator: Moderators (Main)

Are you satisfied with the current crop of iPad music Apps

Poll ended at Sat Dec 15, 2012 12:30 pm

Yes, you just have to take the time to learn what they can do.
44
60%
No, current apps are a waste of time better spent on superior PC/Mac software.
19
26%
It doesn't matter, even the worst app is a better love story than Twilight.
10
14%
 
Total votes : 73
peanut_gallery
KVRist
 
43 posts since 6 Jan, 2012

Postby peanut_gallery; Mon Oct 22, 2012 7:23 am

Keebo, you're not alone. While I generally have found a good iOS workflow, I get stymied from time to time because an app with a fantastic / inspiring sound hasn't implemented a good way to get it recorded and then exported.

Just yesterday I had a great groove going in DM1 and was jamming around in Magellan. I really wanted to capture what I was doing in Magellan and bring it into NanoStudio, but there was no good way to sync it up with the groove in DM1. Magellan does a recorder count-in, but there's no option to start recording with the first note hit (which is the ideal way for me to record, and Sunrizer implements very nicely). Total Pain.

There's probably some workaround somewhere, but it shouldn't have to be this difficult. The "record with first note hit" is a brilliant feature, and I'm surprised more apps don't use it. Despite the fact that I generally love working in the iOS environment, it's the little things like this that make me consider booting up the laptop DAW again.
iPlogger
KVRist
 
429 posts since 27 Oct, 2011, from Pacific Northwest

Postby iPlogger; Mon Oct 22, 2012 2:11 pm

I am fairly happy with the iOS music apps and am continually amazed at what is available. I am also one of the older crowd from the 80's synth scene. All of my sequencing has been done with on-board sequencers. I never got into using my computer for music (funny as I am a software developer and use computers all the time), so I am sure this has a lot to do with how I view the iOS apps. But I also haven't done any sequencing for over ten years. I've been focused on piano and my synths have been sitting idle until last year. My main focus is also live.

Individually, I find the apps are good. I enjoy the portability and the ability to create/tweak sounds wherever I am. Not so easy with my hardware synths. Where I have been left wanting is in the cohesive integration. Right now things are too individual. I don't like having to switch apps, which on an iPad 1, is rather slow. And oftentimes, switching the app forces the app to go through its startup process. This becomes useless for me live as I have to have quick patch changes.

No doubt, I've had lots of fun coming up with lines in Alchemy Mobile, copying into GarageBand and adding instrumentation on top. But if I want to use another synth (Magellan, Sunrizer, etc.) that is where the workflow breaks down for me. I can lay down some stuff in IMS-20, but have to do it without being able to hear Animoog or GarageBand. So far, the best thing I have found for me is I will start something in ONE synth app. Copy/paste the audio into GarageBand. Then add instrumentation from GarageBand on top.

This weekend, I was reminded why I get excited about using my iPad for music. I thought about my first drum machine. The Roland TR-505. It's bigger/bulkier than the iPad and contains sixteen sounds. I now have several drum machines on the iPad that make me thankful my 505 is boxed up and hasn't been touched in probably 20 years.
darsho
KVRAF
 
1538 posts since 14 Sep, 2007, from www.koeln.de/en/

Postby darsho; Tue Oct 23, 2012 1:11 am

Pretty happy with iOS music apps.

I use Genome sometimes and also Animoog, Sunrizer and Alchemy.
They work well, it's easy to incorporate the iPad in my setup, nothing left to be desired for me.
Dusk to Dawn (Synth-Pop) : http://www.dusktodawn.de
M & D (Breakbeat Fusion Trance) : http://tinyurl.com/moebiusdarsho
Darsho (Solo-Releases & Gear-Reviews) : http://www.darsho.de
sazb30
KVRian
 
1002 posts since 11 Sep, 2008, from UK

Postby sazb30; Tue Nov 13, 2012 5:05 am

iPlogger wrote:No doubt, I've had lots of fun coming up with lines in Alchemy Mobile, copying into GarageBand and adding instrumentation on top...


Hmmm... I tried to do this exact same thing last night and couldn't copy into Garageband?? Am I missing something?

Interesting thread anyway.. I am quite excited by my new ipad adventures and am having lots of fun. Like others, I am a bit frustrated by the lack of integration between apps but on the whole pretty amazed by all the funky things I can do!!
iPlogger
KVRist
 
429 posts since 27 Oct, 2011, from Pacific Northwest

Postby iPlogger; Tue Nov 13, 2012 9:33 am

sazb30 wrote:Hmmm... I tried to do this exact same thing last night and couldn't copy into Garageband?? Am I missing something?


In Alchemy, first record some notes. I like to have a drum pattern (loop) playing so I know the tempo. Then use Edit->Copy and click "Copy Audio" when its done rendering. Click Done. In GB, select an Audio track (the microphone). In the track view, tap in the track for the Microphone and a context menu pops up. Select Paste.

Some things to note:
1) Be sure the tempo in GarageBand is the same as Alchemy so everything lines up.
2) GB defaults to just a few measures. You may need to expand the number of measures for your song to fit what you want to paste. For example, if GB is set to 4 measures, but you recorded 8 measures in Alchemy, the GB song will stop at 4 measures. If you need more measures, click on the little '+' sign at the end of the measures.

Hope this helps and gets you started.
sazb30
KVRian
 
1002 posts since 11 Sep, 2008, from UK

Postby sazb30; Tue Nov 13, 2012 9:38 am

iPlogger wrote:
sazb30 wrote:Hmmm... I tried to do this exact same thing last night and couldn't copy into Garageband?? Am I missing something?


In Alchemy, first record some notes. I like to have a drum pattern (loop) playing so I know the tempo. Then use Edit->Copy and click "Copy Audio" when its done rendering. Click Done. In GB, select an Audio track (the microphone). In the track view, tap in the track for the Microphone and a context menu pops up. Select Paste.

Some things to note:
1) Be sure the tempo in GarageBand is the same as Alchemy so everything lines up.
2) GB defaults to just a few measures. You may need to expand the number of measures for your song to fit what you want to paste. For example, if GB is set to 4 measures, but you recorded 8 measures in Alchemy, the GB song will stop at 4 measures. If you need more measures, click on the little '+' sign at the end of the measures.

Hope this helps and gets you started.


thankyou iPlogger, I'll try that. I didn't actually open GB when I tried it, I just noticed that it didn't appear as an option for an app to paste into on the clipboard so assumed it didn't support ACP.

Also, If I play over a drum loop in Alchemy, won't it record the drumloop as well? Is there a way to have a beat / metronome but only record the synth?


thanks!!
peanut_gallery
KVRist
 
43 posts since 6 Jan, 2012

Postby peanut_gallery; Tue Nov 13, 2012 10:09 am

Actually, the drum loop in Alchemy serves as a sort of "groove metronome." It doesn't actually record the drum loop when you hit the record button. Just the synth part you play.
sazb30
KVRian
 
1002 posts since 11 Sep, 2008, from UK

Postby sazb30; Tue Nov 13, 2012 10:15 am

aah! excellent! thanks peanut_gallery
Crabshack
KVRist
 
136 posts since 24 Oct, 2012, from berlin

Postby Crabshack; Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:05 am

the one thing that really pisses me off is that i would love to start creative things in Garageband and then go on with Beatmaker for better drums an so on but theres no way to escape out of the GB jail...yes,with mail and stuff like this but not if you are sitting in a train for a long ride...if you are allways near a wlan its possible to do"something" but i would like to work with my ipad WHEREVER i am...and i have a Wifi only.
oldlibmike
KVRist
 
56 posts since 18 Mar, 2011, from USA

Postby oldlibmike; Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:32 am

Crabshack wrote:the one thing that really pisses me off is that i would love to start creative things in Garageband and then go on with Beatmaker for better drums an so on but theres no way to escape out of the GB jail...yes,with mail and stuff like this but not if you are sitting in a train for a long ride...if you are allways near a wlan its possible to do"something" but i would like to work with my ipad WHEREVER i am...and i have a Wifi only.


Pretty easy now. In garageband, turn on "background audio". Start whatever you had going in Garageband (mute out the drums if you are replacing them). Switch over to the other app and record away. Once done, audio copy from BM and paste into Garageband as audio.
iPad/iMac Music blog - http://whitherwalter.blogspot.com
iPlogger
KVRist
 
429 posts since 27 Oct, 2011, from Pacific Northwest

Postby iPlogger; Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:58 am

oldlibmike, this is where the flow breaks down for me. How do you record something in the other app that is timed with GarageBand? How do you get the two apps to sync tempo? Or do you manually set the tempos, hit play/record and just hope the recording is close enough? Maybe there is a part I am missing. I'd really like to understand this part better as it is where my process breaks down. So I usually start using a single app, laying down some line. Copy/Paste that into GB, but after that, I do the rest in GB.

I can lay down some various drum patterns from another app (using copy/paste), but recording those patterns will have to be on its own, isolated from the rest of my tracks.
oldlibmike
KVRist
 
56 posts since 18 Mar, 2011, from USA

Postby oldlibmike; Tue Nov 13, 2012 7:12 pm

Yeah its not perfect but what works for me is to play the garageband in the background - usually with a drum beat in it so I can hear the tempo. On the other app (animoog for example), start the recorder, allow time for the count in and start playing in time to the garageband song. I usually skip the metronone since it may well be fractions of a beat off.

After I copy and paste the audio into Garageband, I have to line it up with the beat. Easiest way is to put and hold your finger on left side of audio until the wave "expands". I then can drag to the right to clip off the empty space, align the first sound with the beat and voila!

Not as easy as desktop DAWs but after a few tries, I am getting pretty good at it. I'm looking forward to Audiobus when/if it ever hits.
iPad/iMac Music blog - http://whitherwalter.blogspot.com
Crabshack
KVRist
 
136 posts since 24 Oct, 2012, from berlin

Postby Crabshack; Wed Nov 14, 2012 4:58 am

there are two more important things besides all the things iplogger mentioned.yes,its possible to work with Garageband as a final link in your chain BUT:a lot of functions missing.I need at least a proper eq (god bless beatmaker 2.4 is out now)and at least volume automation.I'm doing electronic music and use a lot of volume fades in my trax.Sadly,GB is simply not an option then.It's just a toy,not more.Okay,thats what makes it interesting,cause you can play with it like a toy and have a lot of fun.

and all of this only because they dont want to support Audiocopy OUT.Sense?

Therefore i don't believe they will support Audiobus until i see it with my own eyes...
Echoes in the Attic
KVRAF
 
3832 posts since 12 May, 2008

Postby Echoes in the Attic; Wed Nov 14, 2012 8:41 am

I can't really answer the poll because it depends on whether we're talking about music control apps or music creation apps.

I just can't be bothered with the music production apps. The whole philosophy of each app needing it's own audio files is ridiculous. I'd much rather just have my whole sample library and access it from any app. I could see using Garageband for some portable guitar playing. But really, the size of the ipad isn't so important when you ahve something the size of a guitar to deal with right? I do own a few synths and samplers on the ipad, mainly because they're so cheap I don' tmind trying them and there's some appeal to the oldschool way of recording an external instrument directly to your DAW, printed as is to audio.

Generally I much prefer it for touch control surfaces like lemur and Konkreet or note playing apps like cantor, all of which I'm only just starting to get familiar with but am very excited.
This is a block of text that can be added to posts you make. There is a 255 character limit. Once I have something clever, I will certainly fill it in.
sequenz23
KVRer
 
7 posts since 3 Nov, 2012, from UK

Postby sequenz23; Sun Nov 18, 2012 3:50 am

Echoes in the Attic wrote:Generally I much prefer it for touch control surfaces like lemur and Konkreet or note playing apps like cantor, all of which I'm only just starting to get familiar with but am very excited.

I find the same. Although Lemur is very expensive (for an app) it is a great way to interact with your DAW, and makes it possible to perform live in a way that you never could with a mouse and PC:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XkLsoOebwpA

TouchOSC is much cheaper but haven't found it quite as easy to set up and create templates.
Kapture Pad is another app that's really useful for music production. Its not much to look at, but lets you create snapshots of as many device/mixer settings as you want, and morph between them.
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