Vinyl Tap ($1.99) by andBoom is a virtual turntable for the iPad. Relive your childhood (or understand your parents more) with this beautifully rendered music app. Listen to digital music the way it should be listened to, on a simulated record player.
Before downloads became the standard for buying and listening to music, people would actually venture out of their homes to buy albums. There was a time when LPs and EPs were the product of the times. In the 90s, vinyl all but disappeared. Only audiophiles and punk rockers were still buying music in that format. Luckily for music lovers like me, vinyl is making a resurgence and younger generations are learning to appreciate what really makes an album sound good.
The developers of Vinyl Tap might be old enough to remember buying records, but they are not too old to appreciate how to combine analog with digital. This app will make you want to break out your first pressing of “Sticky Fingers” by “The Rolling Stones” and give it a spin.
There are two turntables to choose from, with the promise of more coming soon. You can play your virtual vinyl on the “andBoom T-800” or the ‘andBoom T-1000.” The former is more like an analog record player with a needle arm that can be lifted and placed on the record and moved from one song to another manually. The latter is modernized for the digital age with a digital track finder and a linear needle arm that can only be moved around with a jog wheel.
The app accesses your iPad’s music library and displays it on a wall where you can choose the album you want to listen to. The record will then appear on the turntable with the cover art showing as the label. Tap the play button and the needle will automatically move to the vinyl and the album will begin. At the beginning of each new record, you can hear the pops and hisses that are audible on most vinyl records.
One bonus feature that makes this app stand out above all other turntable simulators is the fact that you can actually flip the record. The album is split in half and users can listen to the first five or six songs on one side, flip the record over and listen to the rest on the other side.
Another exceptional feature with this app is that it recognizes records by their speed. That is, some records are played at 45 RPMs and others are played at 33 1/3 RPMs. This feature isn’t exact. Basically, if it is a “single” or seven-inch record, the default is 45 RPMs, while LPs are 33 1/3.
This is, hands down, the best turntable simulator I’ve ever used on the iPad. It works smoothly, looks fantastic and offers uniqueextras that make it stand out above others in its category. Keep in mind, this isn’t a deejay app, it is just a means to listen you your music with an interesting visual connection. The price of $1.99 is a bargain for such a well-made app, especially if they offer more styles of turntables for free in future updates. If you are an audiophile, a music lover, over the age of 25 or just want to see what it would be like to play your tunes on a record player, you will absolutely love this app.