Moments in Mobile Music: 6 – Jasuto

Let me start this moment with a statement that I am (currently) not a modular synth guy. That may surprise some of you but I’ve resisted that temptation so far. Although it isn’t easy. However, I’m very interested in ideas around modularity and I’m not just talking about modular synths. So when the first modular synth arrived on iOS I was really interested. I didn’t hurt that it looked amazing too. The design was really appealing. I know that for a lot of people Jasuto didn’t make sense at first but when you’re u gave it a little time it was pretty easy to get into. Also it wasn’t modular in terms of its look and feel and by that I mean that it didn’t try to look like a physical modular synth. I think that was a major plus point for Jasuto too. In fact, in my view its design was and still is a stroke of genius.

I started using Jasuto when it first landed. It was a main stay of my iPhone 3G and after that on my ipad first generation. Which in fact I’ve still got around somewhere. Apps like Jasuto showed just how innovative the developer community could get. It was a real signal for people to do things differently and I think it made users realise just how powerful the platform was. Let’s not forget that this was even before Apple decided to call the os iOS.

Moments like Jasuto show us that our devices are capable of a lot more than we thought. They make us realise that this tiny computers give us the ability to go to places that were unavailable only a few years ago.

I still like Jasuto. I still use it and find it useful. I’d like to hope that it isn’t abandoned. I’d like to think that there’s another massive version in the offing. I live in hope!

1 comment

  1. It’s my all time favorite music making app on iOS. While i was playing around with it since 2009 or smth, i still haven’t mastered even 30% of it’s possibilities. Of couse, situation with developer is a bit upsetting though i can understand him having busy life with both work and family (but he could be a bit more nice – not deleting official forums twice, not disappearing for several years without a word etc.). Considering how i only know about 5-7 people who use Jasuto on soundloud/facebook/youtube (and around 20-50 considering “community made” tracks that were shared in old versions), i feel that app is pretty underrated, especially also because nowodays iOS music making app scene HUGELY increased in contrast to 2008-2011 era before audiobus/midi/etc. Still, it was pretty good that Jasuto was updated several times, so it’s functional is really excellent. I know, some folks would prefer much more ambitious (and maybe powerful) Audulus, but my cup of tea was and is still Jasuto. I really love it’s workflow, and how interactive it is for semiimproviational stuff. My first ever live perfomance was done completely in Jasuto, Sure, it was some noise/trip-hop/drone whatever, and Jasuto is perfect fit for that both because of sound (de)constructing possibilities and how interface is useful for realtime manipulations; i would say that also it’s pretty possible to make “melodic” things in it too, and example scenes from 1.5-1.7 version demonstrate it well, though sure it would be easier to use Jasuto as synth and then record it elsewhere instead of trying to make a track inside it. I’m still feeling a bit bad how many functions/workarounds were never explained, and for example, most “math” modules were never used in scene examples so i still dont know how to use them and for what etc. And stuff like that, sure, can scare away people a bit, because learning curve. That being said, you can do many things in it (i was especially amazed by sampler module with granular synthesis bits, or that Fourier FFT/iFFT stuff which i dont understand), and i really hope that developer would still continue it from time to time. At least i heard it works okay in iOS9? I’m still sitting on iOS7 (ok, on ipad 3) because of some other apps like JR HEXATONE, Curtis, Donut, TOPLAPapp, RISCy, CP 1919, bleep!box, SynthTronica and somewhere i still keep my ipod touch 2G with noise,io (sadly cant use iHolophone anymore), tweakybeat, Spoke Groove Machine, SSquares, Polywave (Pulse Code), RicePad etc.


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