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Apps for Making Music

Apps for Making Music

We've all got creative impulses, and music is one of the most basic human activities around. Even if you're not a virtuoso musician, these apps will help you create sounds and songs right on your iPad or iPhone.

Music Recording and Composition for Everyone

Whether your a Novice or a Pro, GarageBand is an easy to use app that can provide the music recording and editing tools you need to express your creativity on iPad and iPhone.

GarageBand

Make some music or talk shows with GarageBand

GarageBand

Get instrumental

For anyone who wants to make some creative audio on-the-go

Apple's GarageBand is a great solution for anyone who is looking to make some music or even create their own podcast. GarageBand lets users record in audio from multiple sources, apply audio effects when necessary like loops, and much more. Even if you don't have any musical talent, GarageBand has tools that sound like the real thing and the app is smart enough to play them like a person when you need some filler. No matter who you are, it's easy to make some music with GarageBand.

Why we love it

GarageBand is easy to use and rather intuitive considering all of the tools that it offers. It is a great way to record audio on-the-go, so it's like having a portable recording studio.

Making Electronic Music

Make soundscapes with these fun, easy to use music creation apps.

Guitar Effects

If you're creating music on your iPhone or iPad, sometimes you just gotta make your guitar scream. These effects apps act just like the real deal.

AmpliTube LE

Find your perfect, unique guitar sound without spending a fortune with this Limited Edition.

AmpliTube LE

AmpliTube LE

If you want to create the perfect guitar sound, you'll need an array of stompboxes, an amp, a speaker cabinet, and a guitar. Why not skip everything but the guitar and get a whole bunch of the rest right from your iPhone or iPad? AmpliTube LE lets you build your own guitar or bass rig with up to 5 stompbox effects, 1 amp and speaker cabinet w/microphone options, and a looping drummer groove. Need more? Just upgrade to IK's massive library of sounds -- what more do you need?

AmpliTube Slash

Make your axe sound like GnR guitarist, Slash

AmpliTube Slash

AmpliTube Slash

When you need your guitar to sound like Guns n Roses' eccentric lead player, Slash, you could go buy the same pedals he's got, and the same amp and the same guitar. OR you can grab this great app from IK Multimedia, plug your axe into your iPad or iPhone, and just let it rip. You can build an entire rig with 6 stompbox effects, an amplifier head and cabinet modelers, and even a single-track recorder. What are you waiting for? Go shred!

Piano

Tickling the ivories is the concept here; these apps will have you playing the piano in a jiffy.

KORG Module

High-Quality Piano

KORG Module

KORG Module

For Studio and Live Performance

KORG Module comes with five sound modules - instrument categories : Electric Piano, Clav, Organ and Multi. Expansion sound libraries are available as in-app purchases. Great piano app for performing live or in the studio. You can connect your iOS compatible MIDI keyboard, adjust the Velocity Curve so that the pressure you apply on the keys captures the dynamics of your playing style and performance. Inter-App Audio compatibility allows to connect to other music production apps you own for further processing. You can take notes and view music scores and share your ideas on Soundcloud. If you own the music production app KORG Gadget you can choose from 5 separate instruments from KORG Module to work in a project. There's a free KORG Module Le app if you would like to try the app.

Why we love it

For the realistic piano sounds, great, easy to navigate App design, Full- range keyboard and the vast amount of Piano Instruments to choose from.

iLectric Piano for iPad

iLectric Piano for iPad

IK Multimedia

iLectric Piano for iPad

For musicians who want the funky sounds of electric piano along the way.

Launch iLectric Piano for iPad, choose a sampled electric piano sound, and you're off. Incredibly authentic electric piano sounds fill the air.

Synthesizers

When you need to create and/or play high-quality synthesizer sounds, these apps will get you exactly what you need.

CASSINI Synthesizer for iPhone
CASSINI Synthesizer for iPhone

CASSINI Synthesizer for iPhone

iceWorks, Inc.

Polyphonic Subtractive Synthesizer for iPhone/iPod touch
3 OSCs + 2 Filters + AMP + 9 EGs + 6 LFOs + 3band EQ + Saturator + 2 Delays + Arpeggiator

* Inter-App Audio support (v1.3.0)
You can stream live audio directly to other InterApp-Audio compatible apps directly.

* Audiobus support
Now you can stream live audio directly to other Audiobus-compatible apps! See http://audiob.us for more information. (including. state saving in Audiobus2)

* 3 Oscillators + 1 Sub-Osc
- Sawtooth, Pulse(PWM), Triangle, Sine, Noise, FM, 8bitOsc
- Waveshape Modulation
- Oscillator Sync
- Ring Modulation

* 2 Filters
- LP24, LP18, LP12, LP6, BP, HP, Formant

* AMP
- Overdrive
- 3 Band EQ
- Auto Pan

* 9 Envelope Generators
- DAHDSR (Delay, Attack, Hold, Decay, Sustain, Release)
- Velocity, Keyboard Tracking

* 6 LFOs
- Sawtooth, Pulse, Triangle, Random, 16 Step Sequence
- Waveshape Modulation
- Envelope for LFO (AD/AR)

* Modulation Delay
- Delay Time: 1-2000ms / Tempo Sync
- Delay Time Modulation

* Filtered Stereo Delay
- Resonant Filter (LP, BP, HP)
- Filter Modulation

* Programable Polyphonic Arpeggiator
* Scale/Chord Remapper
* Support for CoreMIDI device (input)
* Virtual MIDI-IN & Background Audio
* Scrollable keyboard (Horizontal scrolling at the bottom edge of the keyboard)

* Recorder
- Audio Copy (Compatible with INTUA BeatMaker, Apple GarageBand and so on.)
- Export wav file via iTunes File Sharing
- The recording time is limited to 3 minutes.

Further information at http://ios.icegear.net/cassini_iphone/

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iMini Synthesizer
iMini Synthesizer

iMini Synthesizer

Arturia

iMini is a recreation of the legendary synthesizer created by Bob Moog in 1971, one of most iconic synthesizers of all time. Use it in Tabletop™ to compose your music.

Need help? Have an issue or question? Please email us at [email protected]

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Tabletop Ready™
The connect menu will allow you to connect iMini to Retronyms Tabletop™ app. With Tabletop™ DAW you can build an entire song.Tabletop™ is a free app for your iPAD that allows you to integrate iMini into a complete studio environment. You can use multiple instances of iMini; record your performance into a real-time sequencer; automate any of the parameters; add effects; process other modules through the iMini filters, etc. Tabletop™ also features add-ons for more effects and instruments from other 3rd party companies.

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COMPATIBILITY
iMini is compatible with as old as iPad Mini, iPad 2, and newer. iMini supports iOS 8 and higher, including Apple's InterApp Audio.

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DESCRIPTION
Based on the TAE® technology found in our award winning Mini V software, iMini offers a level of sound quality never before found on the iPAD as well as over 500 sounds by leading sound designers.

The 1971 reference of the iMini was made famous by artists and bands such as Stevie Wonder, Depeche Mode, Kraftwerk, Keith Emerson, Devo, Jean Michel Jarre and more. We now bring the features and sound of this classic to the iOS platform.

The iMini not only recreates the look and feel of the most legendary synthesizer, it does it with unparalleled sound quality. iMini is based on the award winning Arturia Mini V software that was created in partnership with Dr. Robert Moog himself, back in 2003. Thanks to this heritage, continuous research and refinements over the years, iMini comes with amazing sound quality and a large collection of preset sounds created by top sound designers such as Klaus Schulze (Tangerine Dream) and Geoff Downes (Asia).

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What will you do with it?
First you can play the iMini’s numerous sounds from the iPad keyboard. You can create your own sounds and start building your personal sound palette.
If you are an owner of the Arturia Mini V software on your Mac or PC, you can import and export sounds between your laptop or desktop Mini V and iMini.
You can also control iMini from a MIDI keyboard via CoreMIDI and integrate it into your studio or live performances.

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Features include:
Classic sound of the 1971 legendary synthesizer.
3 Oscillators
24db per octave filter.
Simulated headphone jack/external input feedback.
2 Assignable XY pads
Chromatic or tuned scale keyboard modes
Polyphonic mode
Full featured arpeggiator
Repeat
HOLD and MEMORY latch modes
Octave span
5 note order modes
Speed and sync controls
Virtual Analog Chorus
Virtual Analog Delay
Owners of both the iMini and Mini V software apps can transfer sounds from one platform to the other via iTunes.
Full user MIDI mapping of panel controls.
Supports WIST sync with other iOS devices.
‘Tabletop Ready’
Soundcloud seeder (via Tabletop)
Render to .wav file (via Tabletop)
‘Audiocopy’ to paste your audio into another iPad application. (via Tabletop)

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Mini Synthesizer
Mini Synthesizer

Mini Synthesizer

Electro-Harmonix

Electro-Harmonix, a pioneer since 1968 in the field of sound effects pedals for musicians, has produced an app which is a faithful digital re-creation of their circa 1980 analog cult-classic, The MINI-SYNTHESIZER.

Available for iPad and iPhone (IOS version 8.0 or later), the EHX MINI-SYNTHESIZER accurately delivers all the vintage synth sounds of the original plus modern updates.

EHX President and Founder, Mike Matthews stated: “Fans of vintage synths will appreciate the apps ability to recreate the original’s warm analog sounds and deep funky bass, but because it’s so affordable ($2.99 for phone, $4.99 for tablet) and user-friendly, parents, educators and non-musicians will love it, too.”

The MINI-SYNTHESIZER app comes with 25 presets and the ability to store an almost unlimited number of user presets programs. Audiobus and inter-app audio capabilities are included as well as Aftertouch for iPhone 6s, 6s Plus.

Intuitive, flexible and powerful control are provided by the MINI-SYNTHESIZER’s 12 sliders and nine switches. Here’s a breakdown of the user interface:

OSC Section
- PITCH slider lets the player raise or lower the pitch of the note by +/- 1 octave
- SUB-OCTAVE slider introduces a note one octave below what’s being played for extra bottom
- OCTAVE UP switch causes the note being played to jump up one octave.
- TUNE knob lets the player tune the MINI-SYNTHESIZER to other instruments and sound sources over a +/- 50 cents range.

FILTERS Section
- PHASE RATE slider adjusts the speed of the phase shifter
- FILTER START sets the start frequency of the filter sweep
- FILTER STOP sets the stop frequency of the filter sweep
- SWEEP RATE controls the speed of the filter sweep
- PHASE switch turns the effect on/off
- 2X FILTER switch changes how the audio passes through the filters (either in parallel or in series)
- Q switch sets the amount of resonance on the filter sweep
- RETRIGGER switch turns the filter retrigger on/off

DELAY Section
- TIME slider adjusts the delay time up to two seconds
- FEEDBACK controls the number of echo repeats
- BLEND adjusts the mix of the original signal and the echo repeats
- DELAY switch turns the effect on/off

REVERB Section
- AMOUNT slider adjusts the reverb effect level
- BLEND slider controls the mix of the wet and dry signals
- REVERB switch turns reverb on/off
- REVERB>DELAY switch lets the user place either Delay or Reverb first in the effects chain for a variety of cool sound effects.

MISCELLANEOUS CONTROLS
- VOL (Volume) slider adjusts the MINI-SYNTHESIZER’s overall sound output level
- POLY/MONO switch toggles between polyphonic (four notes can be played simultaneously) or monophonic (only one note can be played at a time) modes
- PRESETS pop-down menu displays the presets available and allows the user to instantly select one
- HORIZONTAL slider lets the player adjust the keyboards sounding range over an expansive eight-octave range.
- RIBBON Interface lets the player perform portamento (glide up or down to pitch), vibrato and other expressive playing.

The easy-to-use Electro-Harmonix MINI-SYNTHESIZER App is loaded with great sounds and features and is sure to appeal to serious musicians and non-musicians alike.

LIMITATIONS
- There is a known issue with old iPad and iPhone devices (pre-2012) and the emulation will cause a CPU overload.
- For iPad 2nd gen, iPad 3rd gen, iPad 4th gen, iPad mini 1, mini 2, mini 3, and iPad Air, polyphonic mode limits to 3 voices instead of 4 voices for Holy Grail REVERSE reverb.

DOWNLOADING iPHONE VERSION ON iPAD
- The iPhone version is not meant to perform optimally on the iPad. Be aware that if you download the iPhone version on the iPad you are more prone to glitches and crashes than having the iPad version on the iPad.

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Thor Polysonic Synthesizer
Thor Polysonic Synthesizer

Thor Polysonic Synthesizer

Propellerhead Software AB

Thor for iPad puts the mighty Thor synthesizer at your fingertips.

“A truly must-have synth for iPad users of all skill levels” – Keyboard Magazine
"A Synth-Geek’s Dream Synth” - Synthtopia
“A game changing synthesizer for the iPad” - Dubspot
"Thor sounds just as good as its bigger sibling, and its ability to share patches makes it a fantastic tool for portable sound design.” - MusicRadar

Reason's legendary flagship synth delivers a thunderous sound, god-like sound sculpting capabilities and an innovative, lighting-fast keyboard designed for iPad. Thor is a synthesis playground, a flexible sonic workhorse, but above all, an expressive musical instrument for the iPad.

Thor highlights
• Play Reason's Thor Polysonic Synthesizer on the iPad.
• Load any of the 1000+ expertly crafted synth patches, or create your own from scratch.
• Create your sounds using a palette of multiple oscillator and filter types.
• Play Thor using an expressive touch interface keyboard with aftertouch and strumming.
• Collapse the keyboard to a key and scale of your choice, just like in Figure.
• Move your favourite patches from the iPad to your computer and use them with Thor in Reason

Thor sounds like no synthesizer you've ever heard before - and every single one of them. Where other synths use one specific form of synthesis and one single filter, the Thor polysonic synthesizer features six different oscillator types and four unique filters. What does this give you? Simply the most powerful synth ever created; an unstoppable monster of a sound generator that utilizes synthesizer technology from the last 40 years.

On the iPad, Thor comes with a specially designed interface that's optimized for touch control and the iPad screen. Cleverly designed panels expand and fold at the touch of a button to hide or reveal oscillators, filters, envelopes and more.

The app is divided into three main screens: Keyboard, Knobs and Routing.

Keyboard mode features:
• Piano keyboard with transpose and range control
• Modulation and pitch bend controls
• Assist function lets you select key and scale to highlight chord notes or to collapse the keyboard to only show the chord notes of the selected scale.
• Strum function lets you play arpeggios by holding a chord while strumming across the strum control.
• Two assignable knobs and buttons acts like performance controls
• Settings for polyphony and portamento

Knobs mode features:
• Access to all of Thor's synthesis features
• Three oscillator slots for Thor's six oscillator types: Analog, Wavetable, FM Pair, PhaseMod, Multi Osc and Noise
• Three filter slots for for Thor's four filter types: Low Pass Ladder, State Variable, Comb and Formant
• Three envelopes
• Dual LFOs
• Delay and Chorus
• The Knobs screen is divided into panels that expand and collapse at the touch of a button
• Miniature keyboard to audition your sounds as you are working on them

Routing features
• Comprehensive but easy to use routing matrix lets you create complex modulation and signal flow setups
• Step sequencer with 16-steps and six channels: Note, Velocity, Gate length, Step duration, Curve 1, Curve 2

General App features:
• Patch compatible with Thor in Reason on your computer
• Move patches to and from your iPad using iTunes
• Sound bank with more than 1000 Thor patches from leading artists & sound designers (Kill the Noise, Richard Devine, Chris Petti and many more)
• Gorgeous retina display interface
• MIDI in - play Thor from an external MIDI source or from another app on the same iPad
• Audiobus compatible - stream audio from Thor to another audio app on the same iPad
• Audio in background option lets Thor keep playing in the background when working with other apps.

Note: We recommend using Thor for iPad with iPad 2 or later. Requires iOS 7.

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iVCS3
iVCS3

iVCS3

apeSoft

iVCS3
Official EMS VCS3 emulator

The VCS3 was created in 1969 by Peter Zinovieff's EMS company. The electronics were largely designed by David Cockerell and the machine's distinctive visual appearance was the work of electronic composer Tristram Cary. The VCS3 was more or less the first portable commercially available synthesizer—portable in the sense that the VCS 3 was housed entirely in a small, wooden case.
The VCS3 was quite popular among progressive rock bands and was used on recordings by The Alan Parsons Project, Jean Michel Jarre, Hawkwind, Brian Eno (with Roxy Music), King Crimson, The Who, Gong, and Pink Floyd, among many others. Well-known examples of its use are on The Who track "Won't Get Fooled Again" (as an external sound processor, in this case with Pete Townshend running the signal of a Lowrey Organ through the VCS3's filter and low frequency oscillators) on Who's Next. Pink Floyd's "On the Run" (from The Dark Side of the Moon) made use of its oscillators, filter and noise generator, as well as the sequencer. Their song Welcome to the Machine also used the VCS3. The bassy throb at the beginning of the recording formed the foundation of the song, with the other parts being recorded in response. The VCS3 was also a staple at the BBC’s Radiophonic Workshop, and was a regular (and most frightening) sound generator for the Dr Who TV series. Many fo the monsters and atmoshere;s created for the show came directly from the VCS3.

Description

The VCS3 has three oscillators (in reality, the first 2 oscillators are normal oscillators and the 3rd an LFO or Low Frequency Oscillator), a noise generator, two input amplifiers, a ring modulator, a 18dB/octave (pre-1974) or 24dB/octave (after 1974) voltage controlled low pass filter (VCF), a trapezoid envelope generator, joy-stick controller, voltage controlled spring reverb unit and 2 stereo output amplifiers. Unlike most modular synthesizer systems which use cables to link components together, the VCS3 uses a distinctive patch board matrix into which pins are inserted in order to connect its components together.
Keyboards controller

DK1 keyboard controller

Although the VCS3 is often used for generating sound effects due to lack of built-in keyboard, there were external keyboard controllers for melodic play. The DK1 in 1969 was an early velocity sensitive monophonic keyboard for VCS3 with an extra VCO and VCA. Later it was extended for duophonic play, as DK2, in 1972. Also in 1972, Synthi AKS was released, and its digital sequencer with a touch-sensitive flat keyboard, KS sequencer, and its mechanical keyboard version, DKS, were also released.

(See: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VCS3)

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Drum machines

Why hire a drummer when you can just plug in your iPad? These apps will get you tapping your toes and shaking your groove thing in no time.