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Stagelight NS2 comparison

Hi!
Maybe there's already a thread about this but I couldn't find it in the forum.
I'm curious about a comparison between NS2 and stagelight.
They both seems to be great with a rich set of features.
Anyone tried both?
Thanks

«13

Comments

  • edited December 2018

    Interesting question .Jist for starters according to one of the members of this forum Stagelight does not “State save” the auv3 instruments within your pogect in the same way that NS2 does. It seems to revert to default the next time youbtirn it in. I could be mistaken. Stagelight has a bigger selection of sounds I’d you get the Store Pass as well as “loope builder “ mode. Also Sampleverse is a lot different than Obsedian but I need to dig into it deeper to tell you exactly how.
    StGeligjt doesn’t have a manual, not as many videos of the most current version.

  • I was going to start a similar tread asking which one to buy ....

  • Very different apps. I will give you a quick what I like / not keen on opinion on each from my use perspective.

    StageLight:

    Like:
    1. Can try it before you buy.
    2. Can record midi from the loop view to a linear timeline.
    3. The drum setup makes it feel like you are programming a drum machine.
    4. Fx for each drum sound.
    5. Multi platform.
    6. Cheap as chips.

    Not keen on:
    1. Shop credit system.
    2. Garish colour scheme.
    3. Layout can feel awkward on the smaller iPads.
    4. Not sure I like much of the sound devices - too gadget feeling for myself.
    5. The mixer layout feels wrong to me, but that could just be the terrible colour scheme.
    6. No AU midi options.

    NS2

    Like:
    1. Obsidian is a great built in sampler / synth.
    2. Groups make routings easy or as complex as you want.
    3. Track lanes are great for doing extra takes.
    4. Midi editing is so fast once you know the tools
    5. Ease of use is high with NS2
    6. Super stable

    Not so keen:
    1. No mini timeline in keys view.
    2. No audio tracks as yet (eta coming next year).
    3. Poor AU midi options.
    4. AU implementation needs some tweaking.
    5. No AU fx automation.
    6. No AudioBus.

  • StageLight: has an Ableton-like clip launcher as well as a linear timeline

    NS2: Linear timeline only

  • havent bought ns2 yet, did get stagelight, but i think alla i really want is Photon, and AUM for my jamming sessions... but the clip launcer in stagelight seems quite nice, but i dont know about you guys, but i never have time to sit down and actually work something up in a daw nowdays :/ some additions to AUM would be foldable groups and the awaited midiFX slot

  • For me stagelight is more intuitive, mainly because I am a modstep / Ableton fan in the fact that I really prefer to create via launching clips, this makes it easy to build a song with drum pattern changes and other instruments as well, I'm not really a linear thinker when I make a track and trying to pick up where I left off to make the song change is hard for me on iOS .

    Stagelight lets you add effects and audition / record from all its screens whereas ns2 is specific to screens for those things.

    I haven't spent a lot of time with stagelight instruments or with obsidien , I want these types of environments to use my synths that I purchased from the app store, having internal options is a bonus but not really a deal maker or breaker for me, one thing about stagelight that I'm looking forward to, is That they want to add ab support and iaa support in a coming update, while there are a lot of haters of iaa I am not as I have several synths that are just not au and I still have love for them, just like I love old hardware synths that are also not auv3s haha.... Digital d1, synth one, Magellan, samplr , are great options of iaa synths I have love for regardless of future updates to make them au currently they and others are not.

    Stagelight workflow is quick and easy after you have a couple ah ha moments, ns2 workflow is as well, they both compare in the field pretty closely... Personally I find stagelight more intuitive and less jumping around to play with adding synths and effects and it is where I'll spend most of my time in the coming months, I find the layout and colors great and watching the audio waves buzz by in the clip scenes is inspiring.

    I don't have much bad to say about either, but I like where stagelight is going in terms of updates and see more future growth possibilities with it, and in its current status a bit more than ns2.

    If I waa going to work with linear song building ns2 wins vs cubasis and bm3 for me in that and almost all areas, one thing I love about bm3 tho is that you can have it start recording via threshold when you play a synth into it, I think all daws should incorporate that into their system...

    Slate for ns2 is awesome, and what time I've spent with obsidien has been a pleasure, it sounds great and I would love to have it to use in stagelight as an au to be honest, but I don't see that happening, just like alchemy with garage band.

    Hope that helps

  • wimwim
    edited December 2018

    They’re pretty different from each other, but are both just ways to get down musical ideas. I’m glad I have them both. Just as I find that after playing my Strat intensively for awhile, when I pick up my steel string or my classical guitar, I feel a surge of creativity and it feels almost like the first time I picked it up, I get the same thing dropping into one app or the other.

    Stagelight got sidelined for awhile as I dove into NS2. As so often happens hanging out on this forum, when I opened up Stagelight again because of a discussion it was like a new app.

    That’s no help to anyone trying to decide between the two, I know. Sorry. :#

  • Thank you for all feedback. NS2 is a one man team, how about stagelight? Is it a good thing to be available on ”all” platforms?

  • @reasOne I also love my IAA Apps, and in some cases they where stable than their AU versions (for those that offer both).

    About recording over threshold, I seem to remember that NS2 has something like this.

  • A point that I missed so far. StageLight is cross platform it works on iOS, Android, MacOS and Windows that could be a big plus.

    @Fruitbat1919 Shop credit system for me was also something to hold back, but I think it's really the only solution if you want to offer something that is cross platform. With iOS and Android you only can buy apps and IAPs through the Appstore or Playstore.

    I think that both devs are trustworthy and do there best to put bugfixes and updates out. The guys from Stagelight are really communicative on this forum so you can report bugs and suggestions on AB forum.

    Besides that Stagelight is free to try and also a lot cheaper if you want to unlock it.
    In the end it of course all comes down to personal preferences and in the problem with NS2 for me is that $30 is just too much money for something to try. I'm long enough on this forum to not go with the hype. The best thing is really try apps yourselves and some apps.
    Maybe something for devs to keep in mind especially if apps are not that cheap, to offer the app for free or cheap and make the money through IAPs. If Stagelight wasn't free in the first place and priced $15 or more I probably never would have purchased the unlock.

  • @greengrocer said:
    A point that I missed so far. StageLight is cross platform it works on iOS, Android, MacOS and Windows that could be a big plus.

    @Fruitbat1919 Shop credit system for me was also something to hold back, but I think it's really the only solution if you want to offer something that is cross platform. With iOS and Android you only can buy apps and IAPs through the Appstore or Playstore.

    I think that both devs are trustworthy and do there best to put bugfixes and updates out. The guys from Stagelight are really communicative on this forum so you can report bugs and suggestions on AB forum.

    Besides that Stagelight is free to try and also a lot cheaper if you want to unlock it.
    In the end it of course all comes down to personal preferences and in the problem with NS2 for me is that $30 is just too much money for something to try. I'm long enough on this forum to not go with the hype. The best thing is really try apps yourselves and some apps.
    Maybe something for devs to keep in mind especially if apps are not that cheap, to offer the app for free or cheap and make the money through IAPs. If Stagelight wasn't free in the first place and priced $15 or more I probably never would have purchased the unlock.

    Yes that’s all fair points.

  • edited December 2018

    I love both apps. For me, stagelight is easily the best first purchase. You will absolutely not regret purchasing it. After entering info it’ll be under $10. They give you credits for purchasing so you get several free sound packs some created by major artists. Offers very fresh and new ways to create on iOS and allows you to pick up where you left off on any platform. Like WHOA.

    Imo Only GarageBand (Free) offers more bang for the bucks.

    Could be most innovative DAW on iOS. Not perfect by a long shot but the Devs are great and ultra responsive. SL has been updated several times in the few weeks since launch and promise for many requests on the way. MPE Sampleverse is very unique and exciting, as is the clip launching/arrange view options a la Ableton and the delicious drum tracks as @Fruitbat1919 mentioned.

    NS2 is beautiful and virtually bug free. Doesn’t have audio, note repeat, and many other simple things it should have. There are good excuses and workarounds but excuses are in fact what they are. If you’re a sound designer, Obsidian is amazing. If you’re a preset pimp like me...meh.

    The price and fact that all future features will be a la carte IAPs should also be noted. You’ll be in over $100 if you want it to really be fully featured one day and that will be sometime in the unknown future regardless of what’s promised. Not a bad thing, it’s not overpriced. Gadget has fleeced me for over $200 and it’s worth it until i consider how much I paid for Logic X.💀lol

    This is not a do not buy NS2...I’m astonished and a huge fan of the Jedi who created it and highly recommend purchasing it if $29 is disposable...just recommend Stagelight as a first purchase.

  • I’ve been anticipating ns2 all year as ns1 is the only iOS environment where I really finished a lot of work (down to four things i think: the brilliant piano roll editing, the option to have a double row keyboard which for me, a guitarist, promotes the ability to perform melodies in the app, the deep built in synth esp it’s mod matrix, and finally the defaulting toward linear non looping composition).

    Also should mention that I really end up doing 95% of my musicking on my phone rather than iPad - so NS1’s universal status was also critical.

    Was a bit chagrined that NS2 would be iPad only for its first quarter as I knew that’d more or less leave me out for awhile while everyone else explored and learned.

    On the verge of NS2 along came Stagelight, which I didn’t pay any attn to at first, and only finally tried due to the free option. Wrongly perceived at first that it had no linear non-looping option and that the piano keyboard was the only built-in performing interface for the synths. After getting the unlock and gaining access to sampleverse, I realized that that “pad grid” view was actually a five row guitar style keyboard with MPE, and that it did have a linear recording mode where I could soliloquize at length into the piano roll. At that point I frickin flipped for it. It’s all about sampleverse and the grid keyboard for me.

    I’m still DYING for NS2 but I feel fairly confident it will never get that multi-row style keyboard I love so much in stagelight (and in Volt and TF8). Does NS2 have the double row option at least? I suppose the new kai aras keyboard AU could render that a moot point (except it too is iPad only).

    On the other hand, obsidian clearly dwarfs sampleverse as a synth - other than lacking MPE.

    Main frustration with stagelight so far is I cannot for the life of me get large orchestral SFZs to work in it despite following the tips laid out in this forum. (E.G. Sonatina Symphonic Orchestra and the even more ambitious Virtual Playing Orchestra). So SL is not an arena for my fake orchestral horror film score proclivities (Audio Evolution with its very fine orchestral IAPs is best for this side of my operations currently). SL is the place for spontaneously expressive chamber synth Vangelisising for now.

    That’s my story but I’m not wedded to it.

  • Multi row keyboard in Stagelight?! How does one enable this sorcery you speak of @JonLewis ?

  • Only works with Sampleverse. Just hit the keyboard symbol along the left side of the screen (above the parameters symbol). Get rid of the normal keyboard via the lower right hand corner button so that the grid keyboard gets the whole screen to itself. Drop down menu along right edge lets you choose between 4 rows of 4 keys, 5 rows of 5, or 5 rows of 7. 4x4 is arranged in major thirds, 5x5 in fourths (gtr spacing), 5x7 in fifths (violin spacing). Assign y axis (aka ‘Timbre’ expression in the synth parameters (assigning Fine pitch to Timbre gives you a sweet ‘fretted pitch bend’). Enable portamento to go to trill heaven.

  • @WillieNegus said:
    Multi row keyboard in Stagelight?! How does one enable this sorcery you speak of @JonLewis ?

    I also never saw that, as the linear mode.
    Need to have a second look.

    Apps nowadays have a convoluted / irritating UI.

  • @tja said:

    @WillieNegus said:
    Multi row keyboard in Stagelight?! How does one enable this sorcery you speak of @JonLewis ?

    I also never saw that, as the linear mode.
    Need to have a second look.

    Apps nowadays have a convoluted / irritating UI.

    Hehe, found Sampleverse now.
    I thought this to be the name of the Audio Track, but it is an internal instrument - never saw that, as I always loaded external instruments.

  • @tja said:

    @WillieNegus said:
    Multi row keyboard in Stagelight?! How does one enable this sorcery you speak of @JonLewis ?

    I also never saw that, as the linear mode.
    Need to have a second look.

    Apps nowadays have a convoluted / irritating UI.

    I actually don’t mind the UI other than the horrific colors...apps as complex as SL have to make compromises to pack it all in but the hidden/missing MANUALS are definitely problematic.lol

  • I’m really loving SL! I haven’t got the iTunes cash to get NS2 but will someday because of the amazing Dev and his dedicated work!
    But for now SL is clicking with me and I find it lets my creativity flow. So both are great options to make music. However, for those on iPhone, SL is the way right now.

  • edited December 2018

    Just downloaded Stagelight out of curiosity. It looks interesting but I don't like the UI. And as a person who doesn't have good eyes, NS2 offers bigger fonts which suits my sight better. As the audio recording is coming soon, I will stick to it for the time being. Besides, I am getting used to the workflow and I just don't feel like going to another learning period once again for now.

  • @tja the name "Sampleverse" is even a bit misleading - I can't remember if it's the Sampleverse "Init" or "Default" preset but one of those choices gives you real oscillators to build with rather than SFZ samples. You can have multiple waveforms active within each OSC module and multiple OSC modules (or at least two - I haven't tried to add a third).

  • I believe there’s a way to increase the font or size of the UI in settings.

    @Norbert said:
    Just downloaded Stagelight out of curiosity. It looks interesting but I don't like the UI. And as a person who doesn't have good eyes, NS2 offers bigger fonts which suits my sight better. As the audio recording is coming soon, I will stick to it for the time being. Besides, I am getting used to the workflow and I just don't feel like going to another learning period once again for now.

  • @MusicMan4Christ said:
    I believe there’s a way to increase the font or size of the UI in settings.

    @Norbert said:
    Just downloaded Stagelight out of curiosity. It looks interesting but I don't like the UI. And as a person who doesn't have good eyes, NS2 offers bigger fonts which suits my sight better. As the audio recording is coming soon, I will stick to it for the time being. Besides, I am getting used to the workflow and I just don't feel like going to another learning period once again for now.

    Oh nice thanks. I will check it out.

  • @MusicMan4Christ said:
    I’m really loving SL! I haven’t got the iTunes cash to get NS2 but will someday because of the amazing Dev and his dedicated work!
    But for now SL is clicking with me and I find it lets my creativity flow. So both are great options to make music. However, for those on iPhone, SL is the way right now.

    I'm with you! Stagelight is really doing great things for my workflow as it is very intuitive and fun, feature packed, and has almost everything I need from a daw environment.
    The dev said they will have ab support soon and iaa so I'm going to be all over that! Ns2 seems to be anti Ab so that's a big problem for me , still ns2 is great in its own right im looking for the one, that lets me do things the way I want and sl is very close

  • @Fruitbat1919 said:
    Very different apps. I will give you a quick what I like / not keen on opinion on each from my use perspective.

    StageLight:

    Like:
    1. Can try it before you buy.
    2. Can record midi from the loop view to a linear timeline.
    3. The drum setup makes it feel like you are programming a drum machine.
    4. Fx for each drum sound.
    5. Multi platform.
    6. Cheap as chips.

    Not keen on:
    1. Shop credit system.
    2. Garish colour scheme.
    3. Layout can feel awkward on the smaller iPads.
    4. Not sure I like much of the sound devices - too gadget feeling for myself.
    5. The mixer layout feels wrong to me, but that could just be the terrible colour scheme.
    6. No AU midi options.

    NS2

    Like:
    1. Obsidian is a great built in sampler / synth.
    2. Groups make routings easy or as complex as you want.
    3. Track lanes are great for doing extra takes.
    4. Midi editing is so fast once you know the tools
    5. Ease of use is high with NS2
    6. Super stable

    Not so keen:
    1. No mini timeline in keys view.
    2. No audio tracks as yet (eta coming next year).
    3. Poor AU midi options.
    4. AU implementation needs some tweaking.
    5. No AU fx automation.
    6. No AudioBus.

    NS2 - Not so keen:

    1. Slate pad layout is just a coarse grid - needs polishing.

    2. Not optimized for iPad Pro 2018 resolutions yet with rounded corners (leaves wasted space around). Any plans for this?

  • Stagelight is free to try and as said above easy to comprehend if you are an Ableton user. NS is unfortunately $30 bucks. As somebody above remarked, with more expensive apps free to try apps is a clever option especially with more expensive apps. I recently also bought the full version of Stagelight just because I could try it and the devs of this app are also active on this forum which adds also an extra layer of trust.

  • edited December 2018

    I bought stagelight at version 1 dot something something and I have used NS ver.1 a ton when I started out. I haven't got NS2 yet.

    Stagelight was always much more resource heavy and not super clean and I still get crashes and crackles up to the newest version.

    NS was always like that handcrafted Italian sports car that was so fast and was reliable like a Japanese car.

    I wanted Stagelight to be the one as I was really into touch screen at the time, but it just didn't live up to what I want. NS seemed to always give me what I am looking for. (Please note, I am doing most of my music with Bitwig and GR-16 at the moment, but will get NS2 soon.)

    Just my 2 cents.

  • @mannix said:
    Stagelight is free to try and as said above easy to comprehend if you are an Ableton user. NS is unfortunately $30 bucks. As somebody above remarked, with more expensive apps free to try apps is a clever option especially with more expensive apps. I recently also bought the full version of Stagelight just because I could try it and the devs of this app are also active on this forum which adds also an extra layer of trust.

    Yeah I think it comes down to the way people make music. Personally, I like making linear tracks without loops or bother with ableton whatsoever. I am not the jam live music type so to speak. And as well, as I can get my Notion scores read right away in MIDI inside NS2, I am more inclined to use it over Stagelight. Loops are nice sometimes, but not really my thing.

  • What sold Stagelight for me was its multi platform, iPad, iPhone, MacOS, Windows and Android. It’s also very easy to transfer your songs in between the platforms. Track freeze in SL is a huge deal for me as well. SL has audio tracks while NS2 does not and while the audio editor is lacking in SL, it has timestretch (which as far as I can see, NS2’s sampler doesn’t have).

    That said, I bought NS1 the first day it was released and I have been a huge fan ever since. Right now SL is what I’m occupied with and I haven’t delved into NS2 much. Both are quality products and definitely worth purchasing.

  • @JonLewis said:
    @tja the name "Sampleverse" is even a bit misleading - I can't remember if it's the Sampleverse "Init" or "Default" preset but one of those choices gives you real oscillators to build with rather than SFZ samples. You can have multiple waveforms active within each OSC module and multiple OSC modules (or at least two - I haven't tried to add a third).

    Many thanks!

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