The team over at Fantastocrats recently sent me a demo of StudioMini XL for the iPad, an easy to use 16 track audio recording app with built-in drum loop selection. I’ve played with StudioMini XL for the better part of last night and overall I am amazed by the sound quality that this app produces.
The StudioMini XL UI is perfect for the iPad. It’s a tad bit colourful for my taste and makes it look a bit like a Fisher-Price toy, but for those of you who are interested in using a multi-track recording app that has a very easy to learn interface, this is definitely the one. Each track is represented by a colour and with a simple slide of the finger you can arm the track for recording or delete your last take.
At the top of the UI is a really nice feature that no other multi-track iPhone or iPad app have, it’s a tuner! You can use the tuner to play notes – middle C through B – which can help when tuning up a guitar or bass. It would be even better if a graphical tuner was implemented, but this one is pretty good for taking down quick ideas and making sure that you’re close to being in tune.
To Export a song you simply click the the Export icon at the top and load up a browser on your MAC or PC. A web page appears with each song and track. You simply click to download. The native file format is .CAF.
As I mentioned above, StudioMini XL is perfect for beginners looking to start with multi-track recording. The lack of panning, track naming, mute and solo are big issues for me personally, but I’m used to working on 64 channel consoles or with pro-audio software such as ProTools or Logic. That being said, if someone new to multi-track recording asked me to recommend an app, this would be the one.
StudioMini XL is a great app for beginners. Those who are looking for more a “professional” app may want to try something different, however, none really exist right now for the iPad.
The sound quality is great and the addition of an audible tuner and drum loops is nice to have in a tool like this one, especially for musicians that need to track a quick idea on the go.
I’m sure that the next update will only make this app better. Below are some notes on the next update.
We’re currently working on an update for StudioMini XL on the iPad as well as StudioMini on the iPhone. They will be out in the next couple of weeks.
The new updates will include:
* An amazing demo song by blazing hot guitarist John Huldt (www.johnhuldt.com), recorded entirely on my iPhone showcasing StudioMini
* UI tweaks for even smoother control of faders and record enable switches
* New features: repeat song and copy current song
* Built in instructions on how to use the app on the iPhone, great for new users (StudioMini XL on iPad already has that)
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