Archive for the ‘Review’ Category

The dream of creating full productions on our mobile devices is gradually becoming reality, as exemplified by the much-anticipated NanoStudio. With six tracks of sequencing in the familiar piano-roll style, a sampling (and resampling!) drum machine and four instances of a superb synthesiser, it really is a (basic) virtual studio in the palm of your hand.

To start things off, there’s the TRG-16. You get 16 pads into which you can load the factory sounds or your own WAV files, which can be imported using the free desktop NanoSync app. Stereo and mono samples are supported, there’s a sample editor, and you can record from the iPhone’s (mono) mic. Oh, and you can resample NanoStudio’s output. Very slick.

Blip Interactive NanoStudio | Music tech reviews |


Reason has been a firm favourite of ours since its original release a decade ago. Not just a virtual studio in concept, it offers a literal representation of a traditional MIDI studio, revolving around a simulated rack to which a huge range of devices can be added.

Effects, synths, samplers, drum machines, mixers – all can be dropped into the rack and connected as you see fit by flipping around to the rear of the units and plugging virtual cables into their I/O ports. Sequencing is pretty much the only part of Reason that’s not tied to the rack.

“Ultimately, Reason’s restricted nature is also its strength.”

Unlike almost all modern music applications, there’s no third-party plug-in support – and there likely never will be, although you can connect Reason to other apps via the ReWire protocol. [read]

It’s a good time to be a tech-savy guitarist. Recently, the App Store has seen the release of packages allowing you to turn your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad into a full-blown guitar amp simulator. Apps like Frontier Design Group’s iShred Live and IK Multimedia’s AmpliTube offer a large assortment of effects pedals, amplifiers, speakers. and even microphones that you can mix and match to come up with custom tones that are all your own. [read]