Korg have released an iPad version of their famous Polysix! I had to drag myself away from it to update the site this morning!
iPolysix is an analog polyphonic synthesizer that's been carefully designed to take full advantage of the 7.9-inch display of the new iPad mini as well as the iPad. Bringing together a sequencer, drum machine, and even a mixer, it transforms your iPad or iPad mini into the ultimate analog synth studio. Pack an amazing set of early-'80s analog equipment into your iPad, and time-travel back to the dawn of polyphonic synthesizers!
- The world-wide best-selling Polysix polyphonic synthesizer, fully replicated on your iPad
- Use the newly developed Polyseq polyphonic step sequencer to control the Polysix
- A music production environment including two Polysix units, a drum machine, and a mixer
- Dual Kaoss Pads with chordal support make it easy for anyone to play analog synth sounds
- Polyshare powered by SoundCloud lets you publish, share, and remix songs with iPolysix users
In a lot of ways this feels like a huge upgrade from iMS-20; both in terms of the sonic capabilities in this polyphonic synth, and the functionality added to Korg's way of doing things. This will feel immediately familiar to anyone who has used iMS-20, minus the vestigial patch bay. Everything is much less scary, as friendly knobs replace messy cabling.
Unfortunately while the synthesizer technology has leaped forward by a decade, Korg's iApp technology has not! It has AudioCopy, but that is about the only modern app tool provided. Virtual MIDI is still absent from Korg's design, and background audio isn't an option. There isn't even a goddamn Panic button for when keyboard MIDI notes hang, and they will. Korg's proprietary WIST technology is on board, if you have multiple iDevices you'd like to sync, but the lack of Virtual MIDI at his stage feels like a huge omission from any serious app. You can send it notes from Genome, when sending to Network Session, but you won't hear anything unless iPolysix is in the foreground. In fact just dropping from the app for a second to check your email will cause you to wait through a splash screen when you return to iPolysix.
There are some great improvements though, including lengths of up to 4 bars in a single pattern, instead of the claustrophobia inducing 1 bar of iMS-20. The automation is also vastly improved! Every knob has its own individual automation panel, instead of pecking through the archaic iMS-20 sequencer and trying to assign things in there.
Drums are still synthesized like in iMS-20, but also like iMS-20 you cannot perform any automation there. You can however play around with them manually as a song is playing! If you want a synth-based studio this is easy to recommend, and you might also want to grab the manual. Just don't expect to be using any other apps unless you have a second iDevice to run them on.
Here is an excellent performance from Rutger Muller, aka iNALOG, which you can download from inside iPolysix's PolyShare. All of this synthesis goodness is happening on Rutger's iPad 1! An impressive feat, considering how much Korg have built into this app.