Well I’m glad you asked me that Marc, yes there are some very cool things you can still do with an old Palm device

So, Marc Weidenbaum from Disquiet (you might remember he wrote a very nice interview with me) emailed me a question about using some old Palm PDAs. In fact the three palm devices in question were,  a Palm IIIxe, the Clie SJ20, and the Tungsten T3. Marc suggested that I reply to him in the form of a post, so here we are with “there are some very cool things you can still do with an old Palm device”.

Let’s start off with the Palm IIIxe.

The IIIxe is actually a very interesting device. Even though it’s old, it actually has a lot of potential, especially for anyone who wants to use it for MIDI. There are a few MIDI apps available for the older Palm OS. But before we go there, just a little history about the Palm OS and devices.

Palm devices like the IIIxe used Palm OS 3 or 4 and these devices used serial outputs which are generally speaking very good for old five pin MIDI. After Palm OS 4 came Palm OS 5 (not a big surprise there), and OS5 was more USB focused and not quite so good at MIDI either. However, it did have its other benefits and we’ll see those in a while.

For now let’s have a little look at the different possible MIDI apps you could find for a Palm IIIxe:

For starters there’s MixPad:

MixPad is great if you want to play MIDI files and mix them. It came from miniMusic who were real pioneers in the mobile music world. MixPad works well, but doesn’t allow you to change the MIDI file unfortunately. There were plans to do this, but sadly it didn’t come about.

Next let’s look at BeatPad. This is a Palm OS app that will be a bit more familiar. It has a drum part and a bass or mono part too. However, there’s a lot you can do to control what BeatPad does.

BeatPad is pretty cool and lots of fun to and gives you some nice control if that’s what’s important to you, but we don’t end there.

Another notable Palm OS app in the same series is NotePad, which is, as you might expect, a notation app. NotePad also has MIDI capabilities too so is worth a look.

The last of the miniMusic apps to look at is SpinPad which is a more interesting interface altogether.

SpinPad also has the added benefit of being free too. It was a miniMusic app that I’d always hoped that they’d do more with, but sadly that is now very unlikely.

So those are the miniMusic apps. But before we leave the IIIxe, and I hope that I’ve proved so far that there’s life in the old dog, there’s another group of apps that I need to mention. These are the Capers applets or demos. These are a group of apps that were meant to demonstrate some of the functionality for a replacement OS for the Palm OS which would have been a musical operating system. Sadly, it never saw the light of day,

But the Capers applets / demos are still available. One of my favourites amongst the applets is the Hedgehog. Here’s what it looks like in action:

The last video here bridges the gap between Palm and iOS with the old IIIxe driving an iPad app, Magellan. That about does it for the IIIxe. If you do take a look at the applets from Capers you’ll also find a PDF on how to use Hedgehog. Hopefully it’ll be useful.

Next we move on to the Palm Tungsten T3, and now it gets really interesting …

So, what  can you do with a Tungsten T3 these days. Well, it’ll come as no surprise to many that I’m going to mention Bhajis Loops. Bhajis is still one of the most versatile and complete mobile music apps around, even though it has been out of development for years and years now.

I went looking for a few videos of Bhajis, but couldn’t find too much actually. However, this video from artist Transient.

Bhajis was, and still is for that matter, a unique a brilliant app for the Palm OS. I’d probably go so far as saying that it’s only relatively recently that apps on iOS have gone further, and there are still some things that Bhajis does way better than iOS. Add that Bhajis is now free, as is it’s little brother Microbe (which is also worthy of a look) and you’ve got a simple and cheap way to get a mobile music machine going. So if you want a cheap mobile music device, get yourself a Pam Tungsten T3 from eBay or a Palm Tungsten TX for that matter, then grab Bhajis for free, and Microbe of course, then, when you need some instruments and sample libraries, head over here for an Aladdin’s cave of Bhajis richness!

So Marc, does that give you enough to go on? I hope it does. In my view both your T3 and your IIIxe are very useful indeed. You may have noticed that I haven’t mentioned the Clie SJ20. Well, of the three, in my opinion this is the least interesting. It was running Palm OS 4.1 which was ok, but not with serial so not much good for MIDI. It’s an ok device overall but for musical applications, not so good.

So, to recap, both Bhajis Loops and Microbe are still completely excellent mobile music making apps for Palm OS, and as you’ve already got a Pam Tungsten T3 which was arguably the best Palm for running Bhajis then you’re good to go!

I think that there are still some quite interesting things that can be done with Palm devices these days, and I hope that I’ve gone at least a little way to showing that.

24 books for Christmas: 3 – Basic MIDI

Basic Midi is a great starting point for anyone who has heard of MIDI and yet feels completely confounded as to what it is, what it does and how to make best use of it. It has plenty of background and useful explanations. However, it is good for beginners. If you’re an experienced MIDI user then this isn’t going to be nearly as much use to you. I’ll leave it up to you to decide.

You can find it here on Apple iBooks.

Auria Pro has arrived

At long last, and after a very long wait Auria Pro has finally arrived, and it is a beast. Here’s the full details of the Pro version …

Auria Pro – Mobile Music Production. Redefined.

“This is the first mobile mixing (AND recording AND post production) app that I’ve ever used that is truly professional. Just Wow !” – David Kahne (Grammy winning producer/engineer for Paul McCartney, Tony Bennett, Stevie Nicks, Sublime, The Bangles, Ingrid Michaelson, Regina Spektor)

  • TEC Awards 2012 Nominee
  • Computer Music Innovation Award
  • Computer Music Performance Award
  • Sound on Sound 2013 Awards Nominee
  • Electronic Musician Editor’s Choice Award

Introducing Auria Pro. The first Digital Audio Workstation designed from the ground up for iPad. With professional-level features like comprehensive MIDI support, built-in sampler player and analog synths, real-time audio warping, AAF import/export, powerful busing, and optional third-party plug-in support from names like PSP, FabFilter, Overloud and Drumagog, Auria Pro clearly sets a new standard for mobile music production.

“Prepare to be amazed.” – Computer Music Magazine

“…I was immediately convinced that this is the hottest musical app to make it to the iPad so far…” – Recording Magazine

FEATURES:

  • Unlimited audio and MIDI tracks
  • Lyra multi-format sample player with a free downloadable 4GB sample library. Lyra is a true disk streaming sampler, capable of playing multi-GB sample instruments. Supports SFZ, EXS and SF2
  • FabFilter Twin2 and One analog synthesizers included
  • Up to 24 tracks of simultaneous recording when used with compatible audio interfaces (Lightning to USB Camera adapter required)
  • Real-time audio warping using élastique Pro v3, allows audio tracks to be stretched in real time.
  • Powerful audio busing system allows flexible routing of audio between tracks, subgroups and Auxes.
  • Piano roll editor
  • Tempo and Time-signature Tracks
  • Real-time MIDI parameters allow immediate control over MIDI tracks
  • Comprehensive MIDI processing functions
  • Groove quantizing, includes a free set of DNA grooves from Numerical Sound (additional grooves available for purchase).
  • User groove extraction from MIDI and audio tracks
  • Audio quantizing
  • Audio transient to MIDI conversion
  • Transient slicing
  • Project templates
  • Support for external iOS-compatible Hard Drives for project backup
  • 24-bit recording
  • Vintage-inspired ChannelStrip on every channel by PSPAudioware includes expander, multiband EQ and compressor
  • MasterStrip on all subgroup and master channels featuring PSPAudioware BussPressor, EQ and mastering limiter
  • 64 bit double-precision floating point mixing engine
  • Third party plug-in support available via in-app purchase
  • MIDI Sync support with MTC Chase, MIDI Clock and MMC
  • MIDI Remote Control (Mackie MCU and HUI protocol)
  • Supports sample rates of 44.1KHz, 48KHz and 96KHz
  • AAF import and export allows transferring complete sessions between popular DAWs like Logic, Pro Tools, Nuendo, Samplitude and others
  • StereoDelay, StereoChorus, ClassicVerb and Convolution Reverb plugins included
  • 8 Assignable subgroups and 6 aux sends
  • Time Stretching using ZTX technology and élastique Pro v3
  • Real-time audio scrubbing
  • Flexible snapping tools allow snapping to events, cursor, bars, beats and more
  • DropBox, Audiobus, IAA, SoundCloud and Audio Copy/Paste support
  • Track freeze for minimizing CPU usage
  • Full automation support
  • True 100mm faders when used in Portrait Mode
  • Adjustable pan law
  • Auto-punch mode
  • Full delay compensation on all tracks, subgroups, busses and aux sends
  • Adjustable metering modes, including pre or post fader, RMS and peak
  • Sample accurate looping
  • Automatic sample rate conversion

REQUIREMENTS:

  • iPad 4 or later
  • iOS 6.0 or later
  • USB audio interfaces require Apple Lightning to USB Camera adapter

Auria Pro costs $49.99 on the app store:

Mixtikl 7 Generative Music & Loop Mixer with 12 Track Cell Sequencer arrives

It is great to see a new version of Mixtikl on the app store, I am really looking forward to trying this out. For now, here are all the details of Mixtikl 7 together with the videos released today as well.

Enjoy …

Love working with generative music or audio loops? Create something new by mixing them together! Users say of Mixtikl: “the premier generative music app”, “highly inspiring”, “musical antidote to every other synth and DAW I’ve ever used”, “works on so many levels.”,”Enjoyable, addictive, creative and helpful.”, “Love this app, one of my favorites!”

WHAT OTHERS SAY
Computer Music Magazine said Mixtikl’s end results are “in a class of their own when it comes to generative music”.

WHAT IS MIXTIKL?
It’s a dedicated multi-platform generative music editor, mixer, arranger and cell sequencer. It includes many modifiable generative music templates that you can easily mix together. Sound generation is via the Partikl Sound Engine, a powerful stereo sound source comprising a modular synth with Soundfont (SF2)/DLS support + live FX.

WHAT YOU CAN DO WITH IT…
Generate high quality, user-customisable, royalty & loop free background music from ambient (relaxation / drone / sleep / meditation etc.) right through to more intense melodic and beat-based loop-tastic EDM mashups using your own or 3rd party loops.

TOP NEW FEATURES IN V7

  • Many gorgeous new templates that take advantage of the uprated Partikl Sound Engine 3 (PSE 3)
  • Major PSE 3 enhancements:
    • Now supports stereo and more advanced synth & fx networks, allowing richer & more interesting sonic capabilities and complete sound “presets”
    • Network Editor and all 17 PSE Sound & FX unit UIs have been significantly reworked for much easier use, control and accessibility
    • Greatly improved Wavetable Sound Unit now supports stereo SF2 (SoundFont) samples (up to 24bit), allows modulation of pitch, pan, amp & portamento parameters + has integrated envelope editor (linear/log) – all useful for sound shaping
    • Improved the PSE-included IM SF2 wavetables with extended “IM Synths” and all new “IM NT3-MT7”
    • Amp and Pan controls added to several PSE Sound Units allowing more compact synth networks
  • Major useability improvement through combining Mixtikl Sound and FX Attacher screens one Generator Network screen (accessed via Content Cell > Synth & FX button)
  • Support for AudioBus 2 and Audiobus Remote Trigger and transport control

OTHER KEY MIXTIKL FEATURES

  • Total of 48 independent content cells in 12 tracks for mixing/cell sequencing + many customisable generative music templates (“parts”) [For older Tiklpaks see: Menu > Settings > Show MT6 Tiklpaks]
  • Integral “Partikl Sound Engine” (PSE) featuring a SF2/DLS MIDI & modular synth, many high quality wavetables + wide range of Tone Generators, FX units & control units
  • Mix in your own / 3rd party WAV / Ogg audio loops (loops not included, but see Tiklpaks below)*
  • Transfer in/out recordings, loops, mix files + your own content Paks**
  • Play & record (live or mixdown) at up to CD quality (device dependent)
  • Edit / customise generative rules & sound networks; adjust mix tempo/root
  • Add in pieces you’ve created with Noatikl (not included)
  • MIDI out via CoreMIDI / Virtual MIDI (so you can drive external synths)
  • Support for Inter-App Audio, Audiobus, Retronyms AudioCopy & AudioPaste

WHY GENERATIVE MUSIC?
Generative music is “endless music created by a system”. Use it to create new ideas, relax, break creative blocks or just to try something different!

MORE INFO & LINKS

NOTES
• Mixtikl 7 Desktop software not included but available to purchase separately.
* FREE add-on Tiklpaks (some including audio loops) – intermorphic.com/tiklpak/download
** via Retronyms AudioCopy, iTunes App File Sharing

Mixtikl 7 for iOS is available on the app store for $7.99:

https://widgets.itunes.apple.com/widget.html?c=us&brc=FFFFFF&blc=FFFFFF&trc=FFFFFF&tlc=FFFFFF&d=Generative%20Music%20Making%20on%20your%20Mac&t=Intermorphic&m=software&e=macSoftware&w=250&h=300&ids=1033021879,1033021883&wt=playlist&partnerId=&affiliate_id=&at=&ct=

Noatikl 3 Generative Music Composer & MIDI Generator System has arrived!

It is no secret that I am a big fan of the work that Intermorphic do and have done over the years. In fact I think I’ve known of their work for nearly 10 years and I’ve known Tim from Intermorphic for the last few years, and we were talking about the latest release of Noatikl the last time we got together for a few drinks and dinner.

So it’s great to see the latest version of Noatikl come to iOS (and OSX too).

Love creating generative music or discovering new ideas? Get Noatikl, an immensely deep & powerful app for generative MIDI music composition AND sound design. Users say of Noatikl: “the only serious generative music composition tool on IOS”, “Very deep, very unique and intelligent. Good MIDI implementation.”, “by far the most unique and complex modular music maker in the AppStore. You’ll get addicted!”, “5 stars is not enough.”

WHAT OTHERS SAY
Computer Music Magazine described Noatikl, our evolution of SSEYO Koan Pro, as “One of the best interactive composition tools on the market” and said “Noatikl picks up where Captain Eno’s beloved Koan left off”.

WHAT IS NOATIKL?
It’s a 16 track MIDI generating powerhouse with 120+ parameters & many included generative music templates. Sound generation is via the integral Partikl Sound Engine, a powerful stereo sound source comprising a modular synth with Soundfont (SF2)/DLS support + live FX, but Noatikl also supports MIDI out if instead you want to drive external MIDI synths/samplers etc.

WHAT YOU CAN DO WITH IT…

  • Use it to help break composer’s block with new melodies & ideas
  • Experiment with generative (MIDI) music composition and sound design
  • Create high quality, royalty-free, totally custom generative music / soundscapes: ambient, drone, relaxation, experimental etc.
  • Play / control external MIDI synths, samplers and other MIDI controllable units
  • Use your own SF2 in the Partikl Sound Engine
  • Create / share / edit Noatikl pieces for use in Mixtikl (not included)

TOP NEW FEATURES IN V3

  • Many gorgeous new templates that take advantage of the uprated Partikl Sound Engine 3 (PSE 3) [Note: For older Tiklpaks see: Menu > Settings > Show NT2 Tiklpaks]
  • Major PSE 3 enhancements:
    • Now supports stereo and more advanced synth & fx networks, allowing richer & more interesting sonic capabilities and complete sound “presets”
    • Network Editor and all 17 PSE Sound & FX unit UIs have been significantly reworked for much easier use, control and accessibility
    • Greatly improved Wavetable Sound Unit now supports stereo SF2 (SoundFont) samples (up to 24bit), allows modulation of pitch, pan, amp and portamentp parameters + has integrated envelope editor (linear/log) – all useful for sound shaping e.g. nice smooth ambient sounds
    • Improved the PSE-included IM SF2 wavetables with extended “IM Synths” and all new “IM NT3-MT7”
    • Amp and Pan controls added to several PSE Sound Units allowing more compact synth networks
  • Support for AudioBus 2 and Audiobus Remote Trigger and transport control

KEY NOATIKL PARAMETERS

  • Voice types: Ambient, Rhythmic, Repeat, Follows, Fixed Pattern – used to generate MIDI notes
  • Rules: Scale, Harmony, Rhythm, Next Note – used to constrain and filter the notes composed
  • Chords: Many parameters for controlling chording and arpeggiation
  • Controllers & Micro controllers: Many parameters for controlling MIDI
  • Note to MIDI CC Mapping: Used to emit MIDI controller data instead of MIDI events, useful for controlling synths and other parameters
  • Many more … see the extensive Noatikl Music Engine Guide for detailed information on all parameters

WHY GENERATIVE MUSIC?
Generative music is “endless music created by a system”. People want to explore it for a whole host of reasons – from wanting to create new ideas to break creative block to a curiosity to try something different.

MORE INFO & LINKS

NOTES
• Noatikl 3 Desktop Standalone not included but available to purchase separately.

Noatikl 3 for iOS costs $9.99 on the app store, click below:

https://widgets.itunes.apple.com/widget.html?c=us&brc=FFFFFF&blc=FFFFFF&trc=FFFFFF&tlc=FFFFFF&d=Generative%20Music%20Making%20on%20your%20Mac&t=Intermorphic&m=software&e=macSoftware&w=250&h=300&ids=1033021879,1033021883&wt=playlist&partnerId=&affiliate_id=&at=&ct=

Diode-108 Drum Machine 1.4 brings more MIDI goodness.

Version 1.4 of Diode-108 Drum Machine adds MIDI sync out and MIDI note out to Diode-108’s already existing MIDI in capabilities.

midimux (universal) arrives

midimux talks MIDI to your Mac – using the standard usb to lightning or 30 pin cable.
Finally.

With midimux, you are no longer forced to rely on wifi-packets or external hardware to communicate MIDI data between a Mac and an iOS Device.
It seamlessly integrates your iPad/iPhone into your studio. worry-free, reliable and at an ultra low-latency.
And it works with all apps that speak MIDI.

midimux lets you..

  • control iOS apps with hardware controllers that are connected to your Mac.
  • sequence and play iOS apps using a DAW running on your Mac.
  • control Mac applications or hardware connected to it, using Lemur, TouchOSC or any other app that uses MIDI.
  • use iOS apps to play and sequence hardware instruments that are connected to your Mac.
  • create virtual MIDI ports on the iPad/iPhone that can be mirrored to the Mac or other iDevices.
  • connect more than one iOS device to the Mac – and send MIDI data between them.

all this wired – via the simple usb to lightning/30 pin cable.

In short: midimux creates virtual copies of MIDI devices connected to the other si.

In long: If you have a MIDI device connected to your Mac, midimux will create a copy of it on the iDevice – and thus allowing other apps to talk to it directly. Any byte of MIDI received by the MIDI device on the Mac will be piped to and received on the virtual copy of that device on the iOS device – and is then usable by its apps.
Data sent out by apps to the virtual copy on the iOS device will be piped back via usb, and then sent to the real device on the Mac.

The same is true the other way around. If an app creates a virtual MIDI port (e.G. Animoog), midimux will create a copy of that port on the Mac, naming it ‘Animoog @ iPad’.

If an app does not create a virtual MIDI port, midimux always gives the possibility to create virtual ports manually. these can then be used by any apps on any of the iOS devices to pipe data to the Mac. or other iDevices. or both. and back. at the same time 😉

Features:

  • Creates Mirrors of all MIDI devices that are connected to the computer on the connected iOS devices.
  • Creates Mirrors of all MIDI devices that are connected to the iOS devices on the Mac.
  • Lets you create custom virtual Ports that can be used by both sides of the connection to communicate.
  • does it all via a wired usb connection – using the standard charge & sync cable.
  • works on all iDevices from iOS 5.

*** midimux currently only works with Mac ***

To work, a lightweight server app has to be installed on the Mac.
Download it from here: http://www.midimux.com
Or find it in this apps documents folder via iTunes file sharing.

midimux costs $9.99

TouchOSC updated to version 1.9.4, the first update in over a year

It’s great to see this veteran iOS app get new features after quite a wait. Here’s what’s new:

  • Added support for MIDI System Exclusive messages
  • Added support for sending keystrokes and keystroke-combinations (via TouchOSC Bridge)
  • Added “Invert” option to Push control “Y position velocity” feature
  • Miscellaneous minor bug-fixes and stability improvements

Please also upgrade to the latest versions of TouchOSC Editor and TouchOSC Bridge at http://hexler.net/touchosc#downloads

MIDI "HD Protocol" getting discussed at the MMA

I saw this at SonicState and thought it would be of interest to a lot of people. MIDI as we know it has been around for 30 years now and so a new protocol is probably well overdue.

MIDI “HD Protocol” getting discussed at the MMA

I saw this at SonicState and thought it would be of interest to a lot of people. MIDI as we know it has been around for 30 years now and so a new protocol is probably well overdue.

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