Looking forward to 2008

Well, we’re nearly at 2008. I think that there is quite a lot to look forward to in 2008 and here are a few of the things I’d love to see next year:

– What will Apple announce at MacWorld?
– TuneStudio released at last?
TrakAx competition closes – 21st Jan

– Apple to release the iPhone and iPod Touch SDK!
– Pacemaker DJ device available?

– First iPhone music apps?
– DScratch and DS Protein apps develop?

– More games like Harmonix Phase for iPods?
– More Sound Toys from Palm Sounds, or something more interesting?

– 2008 Mobile Music Workshop in Vienna

– Something new from miniMusic like SpinPad or WavePad?

– Something new from 4Pockets, or maybe updates of StompBox and AudioBox?

– Echo nest doing something exciting with the iPhone and iPod Touch?

– TrakAx updated and even more impressive?

– AxisPad update to include recording and MIDI

– Echo nest release Capers for Palm?

– MixPad Pro: MIDI recording and editing

Obviously I’d love to see all these and more in 2008, but I guess we’ll need to see what happens.

Pixilang 1.3

Pixilang 1.3 has been released with a range of new features:

Main features:

* added commands for video-export to AVI file; at the moment working in Windows only;
* added command resume_video_export();
* parameters of t_translate() changed to fixed point (1.0 = 256);
* fixed bug with pixi-sound playing;
* internal structure optimization;
* fixed bugs with print() command;
* changed priority of math operations;
* added new construction: while( .. ) { .. };
* increased precision of delay in frame() command;
* changed pixi-image sound playing in stereo mode: now red is right channel and green is left channel;
* added functions for drawing array of 3D-triangles: triangles3d(), pixi_triangles3d, sort_triangles;
* new functions: t_get_matrix(), t_set_matrix(), t_mul_matrix(), t_get_x(), t_get_y(), t_get_z();
* added software Pixel Shaders (version PS1);
* added two options in config file: noborder and windowname;
* new command: exit() – exit to OS; exit(1) – exit to OS with exit-code 1;
* new command: noesc(1) – no exit on ESC; noesc(0) – exit on ESC;
* fixed bug with negative frame numbers;
* now during pixi-program compilation virtual disk0 defined to the file “data.tar”; so you can include TXT files from disk0 (INCLUDE “0:/blabla.txt”);
* removed zoom() command (please, use scaled pixi instead).

Mobile Music in 2007: Round up

I thought it might be worthwhile to give 2007 a little review in terms of some of the highlights of the year, Of course, lots of other things happened and, but this is kind of a best of review of 2007. Overall a good year for mobile music in many ways.

Apple announces the iPhone a mobile device running OSX
Belkin announces the TuneStudio, a 4track hardware add-on for 5th Gen iPods.

4Pockets release Pocket StompBox for Windows Mobile, an effects box for using live.
Alesis announce iMultiMix 8 USB with iPod integration.

miniMusic released their MIDI player / mixer application MixPad

Palm announce their new Linux based OS.

In May we saw the release of the first true multi-track software for a handheld. MeTeoR by 4Pockets gives 12 tracks of audio with effects and automation.
Tao Group go into administration and with them miniMIXA disappears for ever.
Palm Sounds publishes the mobile music directory.
Pacemaker DJ

Intermorphic are born out of Tao Group and announce their first products.
Griff Network MIDI plugin surfaces.
MeTeoR PC version becomes available.
Syntrax becomes free.
MilkyTracker v0.90.60 released.

Mixx Mobile released
Palm Sounds announces Sound Toys series

Pophorns are coming.
DScratch video on YouTube
Palm Sounds releases first Sound Toy app – ranDRUM
Psytexx II updated to v 0.5

Tenori-on launch
UbiSoft release JamSessions for the DS platform
Kaosillator announced by Korg
More details on DScratch appear
iPod Touch announced.
Palm cancels the Foleo device
Pophorns go live!

MeTeoR saw an upgrade to version 1.07
Apple announce official SDK for iPhone / iPod Touch coming Feb 2008
DScratch is to become DS Protein Suite of audio manipulation applications
TrakAx mobile multimedia app for Pocket PC on the way
Circuit Bending challenge from CDM
Styletap Symbian version in alpha: Now run Bhajis in Symbian!

Pixilang version 1.2 allows Palm users to create soft synth type applications
iPhone comes to the UK
iPod Touch firmware upgrade allows calendar add / edit. iPod Touch becomes a true PDA
Google announces Android mobile OS.
Harmonix Phase game for 5th Gen iPods appears
TrakAx Mobile becomes available for Windows Mobile

Garnet VM for Nokia internet tablet allows Palm apps to run.

All in all I think it was a good year in many ways. There have been some new applications and some apps that have disappeared namely miniMIXA. There’s been lots of new hardware too, and maybe the start of a more mainstream future for mobile music.

So, more of the same for 2008 or a really interesting year on the horizon? Time will tell.

Music Studio 1

Ages ago I wrote about this application. It isn’t available anymore as the developer’s site vanished years ago and now even the palmgear listing is now more.

When it originally came out I bought it as was quite disappointed. It is a notation application for Palm OS. However it supported the Clie GM chip and so was quite good at using MIDI sounds from that range of devices.

I found it the other day and decided to see if it could access the GM sounds on my old Treo 600, and amazingly it did!

The app is basically a notation based sequencer with 8 individual channels. Each channel can be assigned to a different GM instrument and has an independant volume control.

Sounds can be selected from standard MIDI groups.

Notes are entered via a keyboard and appear on as notation.

It isn’t the best application in the world, that’s for sure, but it also isn’t the worst I’ve seen. It is a shame that the application has vanished and can’t be purchased any more, but you can still get the demo from the Palm Sounds site.

The Basics: MIDI

There are quite a lot of applications that support MIDI in one way or another. So I thought I’d give a brief run down of what you can expect:

MixPad from miniMusic is a MIDI player / viewer / mixer which arrived in 2007. The Pro version of MixPad (not available at the time of writing) will have recording and editing facilities as well.

NotePad again from miniMusic is a notation editor with the ability to export files to MIDI, but no MIDI import facility.

BeatPad again from miniMusic is a pattern sequencer which will export to MIDI, again, no MIDI import.

Bhajis Loops
Bhajis Loops will import and export MIDI files.

Griff has some interesting MIDI control facilities using the Griff MIDI plug in, and also the MIDI network plug in. I’ve never got around to trying these two plug ins, but they present some interesting possibilities.

Syntrax has MIDI support.

AudioBox Micro Composer
AudioBox has MIDI import.

PDA Musician
PDA Musician have a couple of applications that feature MIDI support. MidNote is a notation application that also has MIDI import and export, and MIDI control is a MIDI file utility that allows you to mute tracks and change instrument etc.

All in all lots of applications have MIDI support in one form or another although most are limited to simple import and export facilities.

For me the most promising will be the Pro version of MixPad when it becomes available. We’ll have to wait and see.

The Basics: Trackers

I was never really into trackers, so I doubt that you are going to get a good idea of what the tracking capabilities are. What I can do is tell you about the tracker applications I know about that run on PDAs.

This application runs fine on my Dell Axim although I have spent very little time on it so far. It is worth a look if trackers are your thing, and is being continually developed.

This is an application I know very little about indeed. Psytexx has been around for some time and is a cross platform application as well as being open source.

Mobi Tracker
Mobi tracker is another app I know nothing about, but also runs on a platform I know nothing about.

As far as I know that’s it in terms of tracker apps, but if you know of more, please let me know.

The Basics: Music Studios

If you’re looking to make mobile music on a PDA then you may well be looking for a mobile music studio kind of application. There are a number of options available.

Palm Operating System
The most obvious choice for Palm is Bhajis Loops. Bhajis is one of the most well rounded all in one music applications available, irrespective of platform. It not only includes sample editing, sequencing, mixing, automation, and rendering to .wav, but also can import and export MIDI files amongst it’s array of features.

If you are a palm user and what a stand along application for all your music needs then Bhajis Loops is really worth trying out.

Windows Mobile
When it comes to windows mobile there is a lot more to choose from.

First off there’s Griff which sports multiple plug ins, synthesis, sampling, etc.

AudioBox is a great self contained music studio application with MIDI support. There’s lots more on AudioBox on the rest of the blog, so if you want more just search for it,

Finally, there’s Syntrax which is another excellent application (as well as being free now) and it runs on Windows Mobile and Symbian. Again, there’s more on Symbian on the rest of Palm Sounds.

This is really just a brief run down of what is around. The best thing to do is to try out applications before you buy them.


You may have noticed that the labels or categories for the blog have altered. I’m trying to make to it easier to find information and generally navigate about.

I was toying with the idea of a “best of” category, but I thought it might be better if I asked if anyone had any suggestions for entries to this category first?

Apple Making a new Newton (via Brighthand)

Brighthand has yet another rumour on Apple’s supposed new Newton. I like the idea, let’s see what happens next month.

The Basics: Sampling

Sampling applications are quite common on all platforms these days. Of course there are a wide variety of applications available but few will do all the things you want in one place.

First off there are lots of voice recording applications. There’s nothing wrong with these apps, but of course they do very little in terms of sampling.

Palm OS
On the Palm side there are only a small number of actual audio editing applications. My favourite is Wave Edit Pro, and of course the enterprise edition of the same app.

Wave Edit Pro is an excellent recorder and editor. It offers no plug ins or effects, but is very good at cutting and pasting sample data directly on a Palm device. Also, it has one benefit over other applications in that you can paste sample data from one sample into another.

Aside from Wave Edit Pro the best application for sample editing and manipulation is Bhajis Loops. Of course there’s plenty of information on this blog about Bhajis Loops and on the chocopoolp site too.

However, the notable information in terms of sample editing is that you can do almost anything using Bhajis loops when it come to samples.

Windows Mobile
In terms of windows mobile applications, again there are lots and lots of audio recorders available, but fewer sample editors. There is one application like Wave Edit Pro called Pocket Mixer, which I have never tried personally but looks really good.. There are of course lots of applications that work with sample data:

4Pockets make the awsome MeTeoR (Multi-Track Recorder) application, which is one of the best audio applications for PDAs anywhere. 4Pockets also make the AudioBox Micro Composer, which has an onboard sampler.

Griff too has a sampler, as does Syntrax, although Syntrax has really amazing sample manipulation features. Mixx Mobile is also worth a look at.

Other Platforms
Syntrax is available for Symbian devices as well as PocketPC, but aside from that I know very little

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