UG Team, on may 30, 2013 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Ease of Use: The new AmpliTube Studio is available for iPhone or iPad and for the first time ever it allows your mobile device to act as a true digital audio workstation. If you've ever used AmpliTube and any type of DAW before, then it is easy to pick up and really quite intuitive. For kicks, I also had my wife operate it while I recorded to see how quick someone not already familiar with AmpliTube and DAWs would pick up on it. She picked up on the basic features immediately and with very minimal guidance from me picked up the other stuff.
Quickly, I'd like to just run through my workflow with AmpliTube Studio on the first project I worked on. I put together a basic drum track using the "Drums" tab in AmpliTube. There is a library of drum patterns for multiple genres: Rock, Blues, Country, Electro, Funky, Metal, Pop and Punk. Each genre has eight grooves, and each groove has eight patterns titled Intro, Main A, Main B, Var A, Var B, Fill A, Fill B and Outro. This means each "genre" has 64 drum patterns (some are one measure patterns and some are two measure patterns). That is a total of 512 drum patterns. You have a "Cymbal" button at the bottom that lets you add a cymbal to any pattern. There is a "Mix" button that lets you control the master volume of the drum track. On the "Drums" tab there is also a tap tempo control that the "Studio" tab will inherit the tempo from. There is a quick button on the upper right on the "Drums" tab that will randomly string some patterns together to give you a quick drum scratch track to work with. Going through the drum patterns, you just find the ones you like for what you're working on and drag them down to the bottom of the screen where there is a visualization of the measures you will see on the "Studio" tab. Moving to the "Studio" tab you will see your drum track as the first track where you will have controls to add reverb, adjust the master volume, mute or solo the drum track. You can go any point up to the time you actually export the song and re-sequence the drum patterns.
Next, you just tap the next track you are ready to work with and you immediately have controls to adjust the pan, the reverb, mute or solo, adjust the volume for the track, turn on the "FX" (which is the amp and any pedals you assign in the chain), and a button to arm the track for recording. A metronome pre-roll can be activated by clicking the menu control in the upper right hand of your screen and choosing "Yes" for Metronome Pre-Roll to activate it. At the bottom you can click the metronome button if you want it playing when you record, then the record button and start playing your bass or guitar part. You can go back to that track and change the amp and effects pedals at any point, basically allowing for instant re-amping of any bass, guitar or vocal tracks. Basically rinse and repeat with your tracks for guitar, bass and vocals. You have options in the "Studio" view to cut, copy, paste, delete a track or drag it around where you need. You can also Trim length, Split clips and Copy parts to get your end product just right. Once you are done, you've got your FX, panning and levels right you go to the "Rec." tab to title your recording. You then click on the little options button to the right of the title where it gives you the options to export the track via file sharing, e-mail, FTP, SoundCloud, or as a song saved on your mobile device. // 9
Sound: I don't think that AmpliTube Studio is going to replace home or professional studios (at least not yet), but it is definitely a great tool because of its mobility and ease of use. It gives you access to all of the amps and effects (vocal processing, guitar and bass) that are available in AmpliTube and at this point that is about comprehensive enough to find any tone you are looking for. A huge pro in favor of AmpliTube Studio are the many presets available, the ability to save additional presets and how easily you can re-amp your guitar, bass or vocals. The end products I'm getting from AmpliTube Studio are definitely better than scratch tracks, and better than a lot of demo tracks I've heard. // 7
Reliability & Durability: This is a virtual DAW, so there isn't anything to really say about durability it can't really break. As far as the reliability of the app, I've used it pretty much daily for almost a month and I haven't had any problems. I experienced one crash when I was attempting to really play with the tap tempo function, but I was just seeing how high I could get it to register it never crashed when I was actually working with it on anything serious. The stability of AmpliTube in general is much improved from its early release, and probably one of the most stable apps on my iPhone. // 9
Overall Impression: I was given an "advance copy" to play around with and review by IK Multimedia, but it unfortunately expires as it was for testing only. I will definitely be getting the in-app purchase for myself in the very near future. There is a lot to like about the new AmpliTube Studio. Immediately, you have the freedom to record multiple tracks, re-amp with a few swipes and touches on any existing track, modify your drum track and export a professional sounding end product. There are a few things I hope to see IK Multimedia do in the future, the biggest being to allow the ability to enter empty drum measures. From my conversations with IK Multimedia, I know that the empty drum patterns is something on their "to do list" on a future update. This app allows you to record full song ideas on the fly, record complete polished songs, and everything in between.