BeatSpiral is a Universal sample performance instrument from Xylio, makers of Future DJ.

We've seen a few sample slicer apps, but most stick to the conventional 16-step sequencers of hardware samplers. This looks pretty damn cool, using the touch interface to control the sequencer in a more dynamic way.

iTunes Description:

Chop samples, make beats and perform them live. Choose from the included library or import your own.

  • Create new sequences by rearranging and looping sample slices
  • Hold the wave stripes at different locations to play slices, slide out to record
  • 2 Waves on the left get recorded to one track, the others to the second
  • Different loop regions on each track, change their length, copy and erase
  • Mute pads for temporary silencing, erasing track content and deactivating
  • Eject buttons for selecting sample files and setting volume and panning
  • User sample import via iTunes File Sharing (mp3, wav, aiff, m4a)
  • Animated metronome shows tempo controls (20-200 BPM) with Tap Tempo
  • Zoom, Undo and Rotate tracks
  • Audio engine featuring high quality interpolation and low latency
  • Sample library and handy user guide to get you started
  • Crossfader
  • Autosave

Buy BeatSpiral on iTunes: $1.99

Not mentioned in those features are how you import your own samples, record nor export.

For $2 though this looks pretty damn fun, as evidenced by their introductory video.

Impaktor Overview

Noise Solution has posted a video exploring Impaktor, including the different sounds you can get out of a single synth patch.


Buy Impaktor on iTunes: $4.99

The iPad Piano

Chen You has a 3 iPads, so he set them up end-to-end, to make an 81-Key iPad Piano. This seems like a very space efficient 81-key configuration. He also demonstrates why you want to turn multi-tasking gestures off if you're playing polyphonic keys.

Garageband Update - Make your own ringtones on iOS 6!

While there have been several apps designed to make ringtones, Apple has never allowed any app to actually copy the ringtone files into the system. You always had to do this back and forth dance with your computer. Until now!

What's New:

  • Create custom ringtones and alerts for your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch*
  • Import songs from the Music library on your iOS device
  • Play or record with GarageBand in the background while using other apps**
  • Addresses a number of minor issues related to overall performance and stability
* Requires iOS 6 or later
** Requires iPhone 4S, iPad 2 or later

Just to be super clear on those extra points at the bottom, iOS 6 is not required for this update! You will need iOS 6 if you want to import your own ringtones though. On iPhone 4S+ and iPad 2+ you can also now use background audio in Garageband!

Reader gatearray has already been playing with this and pointed out that since you can import anything into GarageBand with Audio Pasteboard, you could make a ringtone or notification out of just about any iOS music app!

Buy GarageBand on iTunes: $4.99

GrainBender Protests Apple Patent Abuses

Readers hoyas79, Matt, and gatearray let me know about the price change for GrainBender, which carries with it some sad news!

iTunes Description:

In protest over Apple's abuse of the patent system I am removing all my apps from the app store. I will issue one update for existing customers if necessary to fix any bugs that arise from the transition to iOS 6.

Buy GrainBender on iTunes: $99.99

That is no typo. All of Miles Egan's apps are now $100 to discourage sales while he continues to support the app. I tried to contact him this morning, about his decision, but he was not feeling talkative.

As a non-partisan in the Apple vs Android Wars, I can really relate. The idea that Apple has a patent on a rectangle with round edges is pretty absurd, but many of the patents they were hitting Samsung with were downright scary.

Like the gestures! How can anyone patent moving your thumb to the left? The whole business of patents and copyrights has been laughable for decades, but these guys are actually using these stupid patents to sue the shit out of each other instead of competing.

Apple won this round, which will of course be appealed, but in response Google tried to counter by blocking imports of all Apple products because they use some equally stupid Google patent. Meanwhile your iPhone 5 that's on the way, has many of its parts fabricated for Apple by Samsung factories!

This is all maddening to fans of technology. I can understand Miles wanting to protest it, but I doubt it will be very meaningful. In the end, as with all of this patent nonsense, it is the consumers who really lose. I love GrainBender, and I'm not just saying that because it is the only app that includes presets from me!

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