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Zynewave has announced the release of the first public freeware edition of Podium. It is available as a free download for Windows from zynewave.com/download. The full version of Podium has also been updated to v2.32.

Podium Free is a fully functional freeware edition of Podium. It is identical to the commercial Podium version, except for a few limitations, and a small "Podium Free" logo. Podium Free will be familiar to users of the Podium 2 CM version that came bundled with the Computer Music magazine earlier this year. It has the same limitations as the CM version, but it is a more recent version.

Limitations of Podium Free compared to the commercial version:

  • MIDI interface setup is limited to one input and one output.
  • 64-bit mixer engine option is disabled.
  • Plugin multiprocessing is disabled.
  • ReWire is disabled.
  • Surround-sound playback is disabled.

The disabled plugin multiprocessing option means that only one CPU core will be used when processing plugins. If you have a dual-core CPU you will be able to use 50% of your available CPU power before the Podium CPU indicator overloads. Podium Free still uses all available CPU cores for various tasks such as GUI updates and disk streaming.

These limitations may change in newer releases of Podium Free. It will depend on new features added to Podium, and the general user response to Podium Free.

Changes in Podium v2.32:

  • Redesigned the graphics of track events. The events are drawn with a drop shadow and slightly rounded corners. This appearance matches the new design of note events that was introduced in Podium 2.31.
  • The sequence event headers are painted with the same color as the track header. This applies when the "show sequence event headers" option is enabled in the tracks region dialog.
  • The color of a track event is brightened when the mouse cursor is moved over the event. This is similar to the note event highlighting introduced in 2.31.
  • Optimized the painting of note event drop shadows. Removed the outdated shadow option in the notes region dialog.
  • The Note Map dialog will show plugin key names, if supported by the plugin.
  • Lowered the minimum size of note events when resized by mouse dragging. The minimum size is now a 1/256 note instead of the current grid value.
  • Fix: The track event background color is now painted properly when only part of the event is record enabled with punch-in and punch-out.
  • Fix: Using the Shift key to override snap did not work when dragging a file from the browser onto a track.
  • Fix: Inserting tracks from the clipboard or from a track template file would wrongly assign a track tag to all effect tracks in the chain.

Changes in Podium v2.31:

  • Introduced a note map feature for the piano roll and drum map editors. Each track contains a customizable note map where individual notes can be disabled, soloed, muted, colored and renamed. By disabling notes you can hide unused note ranges from the editor. Solo and mute is only available in drum map mode.
  • Revised the piano roll and drum map editors. The old separate drum map editor is removed, and instead the note editor can be toggled between piano roll mode and drum map mode. Use the "restore default editor profiles" command in the setup menu to get the defaults used in the updated note editor.
  • Added a button panel to the left side of the note editor. At the top is a note map options menu button for: toggling drum map mode, enabling standard GM drum kit notes, enabling only notes used on the track, and copy/paste for copying the note map to other tracks.
  • "Audition event mode" button toggles audition of selected and edited note events. The audition behaviour has been modified so that audition will stop when the mouse button is released, even if the note event duration is longer.
  • "Wide event mode" button will set a minimum width of the clickable frame around note events, making it easier to select and edit short duration events.
  • "Ghost event mode" button will display a mask on the timeline background of note events on all tracks. Alt+Clicking a ghost event will switch the editor to that sequence.
  • "Note enable mode" button toggles display of disabled notes. When the option is selected all drum map headers show an enable/disable button. When the option is deselected, all disabled drum keys are hidden. This can be used to set up a compact drum map with only the drum sounds you intend to use. In piano roll mode, only full disabled octaves will be hidden.
  • If a VST plugin supports custom key names, the key names will be displayed on the drum map headers and on the piano keyboard when zoomed out.
  • Right-clicking on the piano keyboard or the drum map headers will open the Note Map dialog. The dialog contains a multi-selection listbox which easily lets you enable/disable, apply color and rename a range of notes. Note maps can be imported and exported as files. The Podium installer creates a "Note Maps" folder in the Podium setup folder.
  • Removed the obsolete "drum kit" option from the preset properties dialog.
  • Added new shortcut keys for sliding and zooming:
    • Shift+Alt+ArrowKeys to slide.
    • Shift+Home/End to slide to the top/bottom.
    • Alt+Home/End to slide to the start/end.
    • Home to center the timeline on the current selection.
    • End to center vertically on the current selection.
    • Ctrl+Shift+Alt+ArrowKeys to zoom in/out.
    • Ctrl+Shift+End to set vertical zoom to default.
    • Ctrl+Home to set timeline zoom to full range.
    • Ctrl+End to set timeline zoom to the current selection.
  • The popup help for the navigator and all scroll/zoom sliders are extended with descriptions of the new slide and zoom key shortcuts.
  • Modified the alignment of buttons in the scrollbar region, and changed "zoom segment" to "zoom selection".
  • Changed the key shortcut for transposing notes in full octaves in the piano roll from Ctrl+Shift+Up/Down to Shift+Up/Down.
  • Changed the default note attack velocity to 100.
  • Added "auto-audition" option button to the file browser toolbar.
  • Added "include editor tool shortcuts in timeline context menus" option to preferences. The default is off.
  • Toned down the drop shadow effects in the editors.
  • Added "timeline grid" setting to the colors setup dialog. The grid color can also be adjusted with the right-click menu on the track inspector color picker.
  • Rewritten the Note Sequence chapter in the Podium guide.
  • Fix: The original timing data stored when using the Adjust Timing dialog was not saved correctly in the project file.

The .pod file format has been updated in this release, so please make backups of your older projects before saving, if you intend to go back to previous Podium releases.

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