Let's Play with Mood

I jump at all apeSoft apps, but I was especially excited to try out Mood. I was in as soon as I heard the Moog Model D style synthesis, but what I've spent most of my time playing with is the extra added bonuses apeSoft has added to the formula. Both Granular and FM synthesis are available in a nice tight package, and all running right next to the classic Subtractive synthesis. I play the hell out of it in this Let's Play!

Contest: I have 2 copies of Mood to give away! This article is a contest post. Since this is also a Patron Timed Exclusive, I'll wait to close the contest on Saturday morning so everyone will be able to see it and enter Friday. Patrons can comment here to join the contest early, but that does not increase your chances to win.

Contest closed! Congratulations to Charlie, and deezign!

Video Description:

Mood is a re-imaging of the classic Moog Model D. Rather than emulating the original hardware faithfully, this takes things much further! In this Let's Play I'm exploring both the standard and non-standard features of the app. If you enjoyed this please consider supporting this series by sponsoring them on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/discchord If you'd prefer to help on a monthly basis, instead of per video, there is a new monthly Patreon campaign: https://www.patreon.com/discchord_com

Audio Evolution Mobile Tutorial Series

After 6 months I've finally finished the tutorial series for Audio Evolution Mobile! This was a commissioned project, but I'm quite proud of it. The whole production run was great, and it opened my eyes to the potentials of modern Android. In fact, my experience using Audio Evolution Mobile on a Samsung tablet was directly responsible for all of the Android support added to the site recently.

I found Android to be a lot easier to work with. I didn't have to "jailbreak" it to record the screen, and I don't have to fuck around with iFunBox or SSH to transfer files between the Android tablet. I also really like having a 16:9 screen. Yet nothing on Android compares to the power we have on iOS; with AUv3, and Inter-App Audio/Audiobus. These tutorials cover both platforms, including the AUv3 integration found in the iOS version.

WWDC 2017: Aftermath

Now that people have had a chance to explore iOS 11 there are some interesting finds!

The Good:

iOS 11 includes the ability to record the screen natively! There are reports of some bugs with the recordings, but it is a nice first step. Especially coming from the company that has thus far rejected many apps attempting to offer this ability. Unfortunately, in all of the demo videos I've seen there are no on-screen finger taps. This is fine for video game footage, but in tutorials I think it is vital to show on-screen taps. In a complex synth it can be hard to follow exactly what is being done without them.

If they add this feature though, I may never need to jailbreak again!

The Bad:

Yesterday Apple released an update to the iOS version of GarageBand addressing, "stability improvements and bug fixes." This could be a bad omen. The differences between iOS 10 and iOS 11 seem slight, but Apple doesn't update first-party apps very often. That's a hell of a coincidence if they decided to do this one on the day they release iOS 11 to developers.

I don't think it is too much of a stretch to imagine that something in iOS 11 has necessitated this update. We'll have to wait until developers have had some more time with it to see if other apps will need fixes too.

What's new in GarageBand v2.2.2:

This update contains stability improvements and bug fixes.

The Ugly:

In the last several years Apple has been trying to phase out 32-bit support. First with requirements for 64-bit support, then nags built-in to iOS 10. If you're running iOS 10 you've probably read the message, "This app may slow down your iPad." This message when running 32-bit apps was replaced in 10.3 with, "This app will not work with future versions of iOS." In iOS 11 they make good on that promise.

You are not even be able to load 32-bit apps onto a device running iOS 11, and this is not merely a limitation of the beta. The iOS 11 Beta release notes explicitly state 32-bit legacy support will not be returning.

Meanwhile owners of 32-bit devices are going to find they've hit the limit of Apple's support. iPad 4, iPad Mini 1, iPhone 5, and all devices before them, are now out. All of the folks that have doggedly stuck with a trusty iPad 4 are going to find iOS 10 is the limit.

WWDC 2017: iPad Pro 10.5" & HomePod Announced

This year's WWDC is taking place in my home town of San Jose, but I watched the keynote from the comfort of my couch. Despite skipping the usual 30 minute intro of chest thumping and statistics, the keynote dragged on for nearly 2 and a half hours! Here are the highlights.

No Mac Pro, and No Mac Touch

Apple proudly displayed their iMac line up, which now includes an iMac Pro for people who want to blow $5,000 on a non-upgradeable workstation. You'll have to wait until December for the privilege, but even that flagship product fails to include touch support! This begs the question: "What the fucking fuck is wrong with Apple?" They had such a huge lead on everyone with iOS, but Microsoft is eating their lunch, and customer base. If you want an all-in-one with touch support you have no choice but to buy a Microsoft Surface Studio. Apple simply doesn't deign to offer that to their users. This, and the the fact that the iMac Pro won't ship until December, may see a lot of creative studios jumping ship.

iPad Pro 2017

Apple announced the long rumored 10.5" iPad Pro, which is packing in a new A10x Fusion chip with 6 cores. In addition to Apple Pencil support, the new iPad Pro features a 20% larger display over 9.7" iPads and 120hz refresh rate for smooth animations. This will mostly be a games feature, but it is impressive nonetheless.

The announcement also mentioned new Smart Covers with built-in Apple Pencil holders!

The MaxiPad™ 12.9" also received updates with the A10x chip, and improved cameras.

The new iPads start with 64GB of storage, but are cheaper than last year's iPad Pro 9.7" models. You can order one today, and they begin shipping next week. I'm personally quite tempted to upgrade from my iPad Air, but I'll wait for the iFixIt folks to tear one apart and tell us how much RAM it has... because Apple isn't telling.


Apple also made a big deal about the H.265 video codec. They claim it offers a 40% compression improvement over the current standard, H.264. This new codec will be supported across iOS 11 and the new macOS High Sierra. In addition to video encoding, the codec is being used for a new static image file format HEIF (High Efficiency Image Format).

Lest you think that Apple is innovating here, I'll point out that the developer of FFMPEG released a similar, non-proprietary, H.265 image file format back in 2014.

So Many Fucking Dad Jokes

Pictured right are my WWDC notes. Here's a round-up of some of the other non-iPad news, sans Dad Jokes.

  • ARKit - a new way for developers to create Augmented Reality apps. They focused on games, but I'm looking forward to seeing music app developers embrace AR, like we've seen to some extent in AC Sabre.
  • App Store refresh - but no mention of subgenres, so finding music "production" apps is still going to be a mess.
  • Improved QWERTY Keyboard - They've redesigned the onscreen keyboard in a way that looks nice. There will be less effort to get to special characters and numbers.
  • iOS 11 introduces Drag & Drop for copy-paste. It was unclear if this functionality will be opened to third-party apps. They only showed Apple apps doing it.
  • iTunes has paid developers $70,000,000,000 to date, and 30% of that was in the last year. While most of this WWDC was pretty meh, this is an important and positive note on the health of the iOS eco-system.


To finish off the presentation Tim Cook tried out a new catch-phrase with his, "One last thing." Tim announced the HomePod, to rival Amazon's Echo and Google Home. At three-times the price of the competition, with a name that's not only ham-fisted but also used already, Apple has RSVPed late to the party. They still haven't arrived, and won't until December.

Rather than show a picture of the product, here is a selfie I took when I realized my face was stuck like this through the whole HomePod unveil.

iOS 11

The iOS 11 details revealed today were all general audience fluff. We'll have to wait for a few days as developers explore it to find out if there is anything interesting going on under the hood, or relevant to anything besides games.

Let's Play with Syndt

For those of you that do not follow me on Twitter, I've historically always posted an Early Access Screening for my Let's Plays that were only available to Patrons. But since Patrons of the Let's Play series are getting Ad Free status on this site, I wanted to make sure that Site Patrons get the benefits of Early Access to my Let's Plays. So I made a Patron Only mode for posts. If you can read this, you are a Patron of either campaign! Thank you!

Update: This post is now visible to everyone, so that is why you can see this if you are not a Patron!

I'm just making sure Patrons of both campaigns get the same benefits. Everyone else gets this on Friday!

This is my first Let's Play I've done in a while, and I felt really good about it! I hope you'll enjoy it too, and forget all about Jakob and Doug's videos... even if they got theirs out ahead of me!

Video Description:

KLEVGR's Syndt is a new synth app with some unique sound shaping parameters, and a beautiful UI. Let's Play with it and make something awesome! If you enjoyed this please consider supporting this series by sponsoring them on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/discchord If you'd prefer to help on a monthly basis, instead of per video, there is a new monthly Patreon campaign: https://www.patreon.com/discchord_com

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