APPLE LOGIC PRO X
Apple has announced the long-awaited update to its flagship digital audio workstation and effects program, Logic Pro X. Logic Pro 9 was first announced in July 2009, giving Apple more than four years to improve and enhance the software suite. With everything you'll need to write, record and edit audio, Logic Pro X now includes a much faster 64-bit architecture (32-bit plug-ins are now incompatible) and a streamlined, customizable single-window interface with a simplified, but customizable design.
A free iOS app, Logic Remote, gives Logic Pro users a literal hands-on touch, as it allows them to control features wirelessly from the multitouch display of an iPad, ideal for operators working from an instrument or a microphone. The iPad can be used as a keyboard, drum pad, guitar fretboard, mixing board and transport control. This edition sees the rhythm section getting a lot of new options, as well. The brand-new Drummer feature substitutes as a backbeat stand-in with a virtual session player capable of a variety of drumming techniques for simulating styles like rock, alternative, songwriter and R&B. The accompanying Drum Kit Designer plug-in will also let you build a custom kit from a large mixable collection of recorded snares, toms, hi-hats and cymbals. A Bass Amp Designer is also included for customizable bass recordings through vintage and modern bass amps.
Logic Pro X sports a rebuilt sound and loop library with more than 1,500 instrument and effects patches, as well as thousands of loops available for download. For guitarists, there are also seven new stompbox simulations like an octave pedal (Dr. Octave) and reverse delay (Tie Die Delay). Logic Pro X expands on its collection of keyboards and synths with new instruments and nine new MIDI plug-ins, like the Arpeggiator, with verbose parameter adjustments, and the Retro Synth for emulating classic synthesizers from the '70s and '80s. With tone-shaping controls, the Vintage Keyboards plug-in simulates realistic electric pianos, B3 organs and clavs.
For composers and video editors, native MusicXML metadata support will allow you to transfer compositions to compatible scoring programs and others, including Final Cut Pro X. An Auto Save will allow you to reconstruct lost crashed projects, and an Alternatives feature lets you save varying versions of a session.
No upgrade pricing is available, and the software requires Mountain Lion OS X 10.8, as well as roughly 35 GB of hard drive space if installing all optional content. MainStage 3 was also announced as a separate purchase, but companion live-performance application with a new user interface and compatibility with Logic Pro X plug-ins, Patches and Smart Controls. List Price: $199 (Logic Pro X); $29 (MainStage 3). Contact: Apple, (800) MY-APPLE, www.apple.com.