updated 11:30 pm EDT, Thu May 30, 2013
Full multi-track audio editor plus pre-amp adapter take recording mobile
IK Multimedia launched a one-two punch on Thursday with the release of two major new products: the iOS version of its audio editor AmpliTube -- now at version 3.0 -- and a new version of its hardware pre-amp adapter for quarter-inch connected instruments such as most electric guitars, the iRig HD. The latter sells for $100 and allows performers to record all manner of traditional instruments. The $20 iOS AmpliTube now offers a multi-track Studio mode with new gear models and timeline-based audio editing, along with effects and a built-in drum machine.
The Studio in-app purchase ($10 for iPhone or $15 for iPad users over the original $20 AmpliTube cost) turns AmpliTube 3 into a full-fledged Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) that features a full bass and guitar rig, effects, a programmable drum generator, compatibility with other audio apps through Audiobus, and a waveform-based editing suite fully capable of arranging, editing, mixing and mastering complete musical pieces. A full set of commands -- such as cut, copy, paste, split (at playhead), normalize and delete -- is available, along with cropping and fade-creation tools. Version 3.0 is a free upgrade to previous users.
On the iPhone, AmpliTube can now handle up to four tracks with the Studio IAP, and up to eight tracks on the iPad. The guitar/bass rig includes a tuner, selectable stomp box effects, virtual amplifiers from makers like Fender and Ampeg, effects collections from artists like Slash and Jimi Hendrix, selectable speaker cabinets and microphone models. When used with the iRig HD, AmpliTube 3 also offers four new free gear models: the Metal 150 and Metal W amps, and the X-Flanger and Wharmonator "Whammy" pedals.
In addition to all that, the program comes with a rehearsal mode that lets users load pre-recorded material into it and change the tempo or pitch if desired in order to facilitate playing along. The program can also be used simultaneously with other audio apps, particularly IK Multimedia's own SampleTank and iLectric apps. The program supports up to four outside audio programs in conjunction with itself, meaning users can set up a wide variety of sounds to record alongside their own playing.
In combination with AmpliTube, the company launched the iRig HD adapter and digital interface designed for guitars and bass. Buyers who purchase the $100 iRig HD receive the AmpliTube 3 app for free, but will still need to buy the new Studio feature as an IAP. The iPad and iPhone/iPod touch versions are separate, and IAPs do not transfer between the different versions. The new device is Lightning compatible for the latest iPad and iPhone models, but the cable is detachable, allowing for use with 30-pin and USB cables as well (included).
As an adapter, iRig HD is fully compatible with any mobile recording app, such as Garageband, but does offer four new virtual amps and effects when used with AmpliTube. The device can also be used on Lightning-equipped Mac notebooks and desktops, and comes with the AmpliTube Custom Shop for Mac users. The app includes the ability to purchase virtual amplifiers and effects from top manufacturers a la carte, and the company has included AmpliTube Metal (a collection of high-gain amps and stomp boxes) for free with the purchase of the iRig HD. The plug-in also works with Garageband, Logic and other DAW software.
The device offers pre-amp gain control, 24-bit A/D conversion and is completely self-powered by either the USB or iOS device connection. The instrument connector is a Hi-Z input jack, and the unit is ultra-compact and lightweight. It is available now from IK Multimedia direct and should soon be available at local music speciality retailers.