Why do I prefer Caustic to Gadget (?)

edited February 5 in General

An open ended question, and an unsettled one at that.

First the grasping-mind, addict reasons:
1. BM3 isn't out yet.
2. Caustic just had a massive update (best app is the newest app, sort of thing. In this case the best app is the most recently updated, as in my favorite color is "shiny")

app-specific stuff
1. Caustic is $10, the cost of one gadget, say Bilbao
2. Caustic's Bilbao (Beatbox) is better than Bilbao by a country mile, and Beatbox wasn't an IAP
3. New machines aren't IAPs
4. Caustic has a vocoder
5. Caustic has a modular synth
6. Caustic has a Karplus-Strong synth
7. Caustic has a 3 Op FM synth
8. Caustic is skinnable
9. Caustic has a community, where presets and skins are shared
10. Caustic has the best YouTube tutorials in iOS
11. Caustic's PCM synth (like its Beatbox) can import (AudioShare) and load user samples (so many of Gadgets synths are PCM, but none load your stuff)
12. Caustic's PCM synth can load patches you make in-app using any and all of its machines ("Merge Rack to Instrument")
13. Caustic has its own standalone .wav editor.

Me-specific stuff
1. Caustic dev is one guy
2. He makes those fantastic tutorials himself
3. I really like the way he sounds in the tutorials. Not just that he's obviously a very smart guy, but his voice is reasonable and reassuring when he's explaining topics that were over my head before I watched his stuff
4. I find Caustic's instrument's GUIs to be approachable in a way that Gadgets is not. This not only because you can make your own GUI, but because the sheen of Gadgets skeumorphism can be off putting, impenetrable in the sense that I don't fuck around with sounds as freely inside it as I do in Caustic.
5. Caustics midi-editor and song mode are also easier for me to dig into. This may also belong in the "app-specific" category, (in terms of midi editing tools and song block building) but what I'm actually getting at is the homey-ness of the editors as much as their functionality.

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Comments

  • edited February 5

    Caustic can even load most MusicStudio instr files. (well technically IL direct wave instr exports) but the file format is the same.

    How do you MAKE a skin by the way? I'd kinda like to do a steampunk one

  • @Littlewoodg

    I agree with all you say. Caustic is a warm blanket on a chilly night. Once you get into the workflow nothing gets in your way. I like that I don't come to those "stopping points" I often hit with other apps.

    To me, FLSM has the potential of equaling or exceeeding Caustic but not any time soon from what I'm seeing.

  • edited February 5

    @BiancaNeve said:
    Caustic can even load most MusicStudio instr files. (well technically IL direct wave instr exports) but the file format is the same.

    I see an iMazing session in my future...

  • Didn't know that. I just downloaded a instr drum kit I found online to Documents5 and then drag/dropped into the Caustic PCMSynth presets folder. Easy as pie! Drums mapped across the keyboard in seconds!

  • edited February 6

    I could name a few features from both Caustic and FLM3 that I think are better than Gadget but Gadget is still better overall in my opinion, Phoenix, Wolfsburg, Dublin, Berlin all stock gadgets that I never stopped using and wouldn't want to trade them for any of Caustic's or FLM3's synths. Also I have nothing against Caustic's and FML3's gui's but Gadget's skeuomorphism is the most pleasing to my eyes I guess that's strictly a matter of taste.

  • For my feeble brain I'd rank workflow as 1. Caustic, 2. a tie between FLSM and Gadget.
    These are the 3 standalone apps I get along best with.

    BeatHawk and Cubasis have their strengths but after that not in love with anything else except as loop creators.

  • edited February 6

    You forgot to mention a few things about the sampling capabilities of Caustic:
    - You can import any sample and run an analysis on it to get at the root note. The PCM synth will auto map the sample to the appropriate root note to make it sound in tune.
    - The update includes time-stretching and bpm detection
    - You can now mix-down instruments and effects into a multisampled preset.
    - The sampler now supports stereo files
    - As anikt points out, you can import zipped wav bundles into the PCM and get drum-kits. The PCM also supports soundfonts.

    I'd say Gadget is more powerful than Caustic by virtue of getting all those legacy Korg presets, however, from a design perspective, in terms of the pattern/song mode, the new scale mode, wav editor and lots of other reasons, Caustic is superior. HOWEVER in the time that it took Caustic to update, Gadget went through several significant updates and the developer of Caustic has not given positive remarks about developing the app any further. People who make inquiries about further updates or feature requests tend to get shot down in the forums so just enjoy it for what it is.

  • edited February 5

    Caustic has sensibly-named modules, not "hipper-than-thou" names that are meaningless unless you're a teenager with a sideways baseball cap. Sorry if I'm being rude, but those names in Gadget have been a confusing turn-off since I got it. And why is iM1 named Darwin? Is that it's name? I'm not even sure.

    However ...

    FLM3 is the only one with linear audio recording. And its GMS synth (cheap IAP) is the only filter I've found I can control in realtime with my wind controller without aliasing, not a small thing for me.

  • @LucidMusicInc said:
    People who make inquiries about further updates or feature requests tend to get shot down in the forums so just enjoy it for what it is.

    I'd point out that being "shot down" is not done by the dev. He's a very cool guy. There are certain people on that forum who are "very protective" of the whole Caustic "thing". I think they are users from way back in the Android only days. ;)

  • @anickt said:
    @Littlewoodg

    I agree with all you say. Caustic is a warm blanket on a chilly night. Once you get into the workflow nothing gets in your way. I like that I don't come to those "stopping points" I often hit with other apps.

    To me, FLSM has the potential of equaling or exceeeding Caustic but not any time soon from what I'm seeing.

    I agree about FLSM's potential, and I'm playing the long game there. Long game paid off with Caustic...

  • edited February 5

    @BiancaNeve I have a big collection of nice user instruments for Xewtons Music Studio, but Caustic crashes every time I try to import one. Do you know if there is a workaround for this?

  • If Caustic had link it would be way more useful to me, i have pretty much replaced it on Android too with G-stomper, great update though.

  • Can you cross your work over easily between iOS and Android?

  • cause Caustic makes sense.

  • edited February 5

    @anickt said:
    Didn't know that. I just downloaded a instr drum kit I found online to Documents5 and then drag/dropped into the Caustic PCMSynth presets folder. Easy as pie! Drums mapped across the keyboard in seconds!

    So all those imaschine kits that comrades on this site have so kindly provided to me – I can use those in caustic somehow?

  • Cuz Caustic is more for the creative underground type, who wish to avoid the "pretty pop culture" trendy things.

    It is the punk in some of us.

    Nevermind that, you can actually use Caustic on the iPhone. Not just squint.

    I think now with Virsyn Slice, Gadget was more about Abu Dhabi for me.

    Things they be a changing.

    LETS START A CAUSTIC PRESET SHARING THREAD?

  • Of course, you know, you could actually use both…

  • Can you have caustic's instruments set to receive on different midi channels?

  • @ExAsperis99 said:
    Of course, you know, you could actually use both…

    Aww Hell yeah!

  • @Blipsford_Baubie said:
    Can you have caustic's instruments set to receive on different midi channels?

    Yes. I have used a combo of the internal sequencer, MIDIsteps and MIDIlfos to drive Caustic instruments

  • @RustiK said:
    Cuz Caustic is more for the creative underground type, who wish to avoid the "pretty pop culture" trendy things.

    It is the punk in some of us.

    Nevermind that, you can actually use Caustic on the iPhone. Not just squint.

    I think now with Virsyn Slice, Gadget was more about Abu Dhabi for me.

    Things they be a changing.

    LETS START A CAUSTIC PRESET SHARING THREAD?

    Check out the Caustic site

    http://www.singlecellsoftware.com/caustic/presets

  • Caustic is amazing. Gadget too. Modstep accepts midi from Caustic and can drive Gadget with it. Use all 3! Import into daw of choice for finishing up. Don't see why we need these A>B threads when A+B+C=amazing.

    1. Caustic had a modular synth. I'm not too crazy for the FM synth (only sine waves modulating sine waves), but the modular synth can do FM synthesis quite well (using mixers to sometimes combine signals and whatnot).

    2. Great routing options using machine input in the modular synth (although @Rej if you're reading this, can you allow the machine input to output a stereo signal, not just mono?).

    3. Easier note resizing when inputting notes.

    4. SF2 PLAYER, BITCH! Input some mad volume and make fat layered stacks of sound, yo. (Anybody who picks up the reference is instantly cool in my personal book.)

    5. Stem export (although @Rej , the stems currently don't go over to Audioshare all at once. I have to manually send each of them over, which isn't the worst workaround in the world.)

    6. MIDI export!

    7. Using it on a phone.

    8. Because Caustic isn't just for pompous billy no mates wankers who think all pop music sucks while their own "underground" sound is the only legit sound what exists. (Just taking the pish here.) Caustic is for everybody, from the underground, to the mainstream, and EVERYONE in between.

  • edited February 6

    @BiancaNeve said:
    ... How do you MAKE a skin by the way? I'd kinda like to do a steampunk one

    Check out the skinning thread on single cell's forum...
    http://www.singlecellsoftware.com/forum/536

    Someone started a steampunk one, there's a completed Paisley (shout out to the Purple One), a cool Sci Fi one...

    the skinning tutorials are in the stickies

    @gonekrazy3000 said:
    Caustic is amazing. Gadget too. Modstep accepts midi from Caustic and can drive Gadget with it. Use all 3! Import into daw of choice for finishing up. Don't see why we need these A>B threads when A+B+C=amazing.

    You are so right, of course. The many self-contained workspaces available are each mind blowing in their way. I think I wanted to understand what my particular predilections are all about, and to shine a light on the wonderfulness that is Caustic

  • @u0421793 said:
    Can you cross your work over easily between iOS and Android?

    Should load on any version including the free desktop version.

  • @5pinlink said:

    @u0421793 said:
    Can you cross your work over easily between iOS and Android?

    Should load on any version including the free desktop version.

    A project exports as a self-contained .causticpack file including all song info and instruments. Will open on any platform.

  • edited February 6

    I have dismissed Caustic as a "poor mans Gadget" (which I've had since release + IAPs) right up until this update. Then I started watching the excellent tutorials on YouTube. Then I saw the modular, the PCM, the soundfont import, the routing possibilities, Machine In, the numerous smart workflow shortcuts, the free PC version.

    I bought it today, I think we are going to have a fruitful relationship. For AU$15 it's a steal.

    I will also use Gadget as I can see the benefits in both.

  • You all are making me redownload this again today.

    I remember tinkering with it 3 years or so ago, but wasn't a fan of the sound quality of the synths.

    Is FLSM worth getting now too? Thought people weren't in love with it.

  • edited February 6

    @AQ808 said:
    You all are making me redownload this again today.

    I remember tinkering with it 3 years or so ago, but wasn't a fan of the sound quality of the synths.

    Is FLSM worth getting now too? Thought people weren't in love with it.

    For me the issue with FLSM is getting audio files in and out of it. Pretty much limited to copy/paste or iTunes. They acknowledge it's a work in progress and an update is due in the next week or two. See the to-do list:

    http://forum.image-line.com/viewtopic.php?f=1988&t=164918

    Not sure if you have to be registered to see it.

    As far as general workflow, flexibility and sound I like it.

    PS - Caustic is my number one app for getting good sounding stuff together quickly.

  • Has the dev discussed the possibility of Link?

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