Audiobus: Use your music apps together.

What is Audiobus?Audiobus is an award-winning music app for iPhone and iPad which lets you use your other music apps together. Chain effects on your favourite synth, run the output of apps or Audio Units into an app like GarageBand or Loopy, or select a different audio interface output for each app. Route MIDI between apps — drive a synth from a MIDI sequencer, or add an arpeggiator to your MIDI keyboard — or sync with your external MIDI gear. And control your entire setup from a MIDI controller.

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Audiobus is the app that makes the rest of your setup better.

Which drum machine has the best UI?

This question goes out to apps, hardware, everything, old and new.

For the purposes of this thread, ignore the sounds (they all sound the same anyway, so leave the sounds out of this). Just think about the way that the drum machine allows you to put together the individual hits, rhythms, patterns, pieces of riff, overall sections, song, etc. Is there a “best practice” way of doing the user interface? Conversely, is there a “definitely don’t do it this way” example too? Also think about different usage modes – mobile, on a bus or train; in a chair, at a desk; pointing with a mouse, with a finger, hitting pads and buttons, etc.

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Comments

  • I absolutely love Patterning / Patterning 2 in that regard. Very quick and intuitive to get a beat going.

  • +1 for Patterning
    I like EG Pulse too.

  • inb4 drambo

  • edited November 6

    DrumPerfect Pro is like the greatest drum app ever – just begging for a nice interface to come along and make it more useable.

    Digistix shows promise.

    You can get a lot more acoustic drum nuance out of Bilbao in Gadget than meets the eye, playing w/velocities and what-not.

    Of course, I like to record realistic, acoustic kits.

    With the forthcoming Jazz Drummer/Luis Martinez introducing stem export (IIRC), all we need is a “crash” lane in the sequencer, with options for splash and clasp as well, across his apps and I may never leave my iPad :smile:

  • Patterning has the best interface, hands down.

    Unfortunately it's not AUv3, so I hardly every use it.

  • Maschine, Octachron layout is most intuitive for me. Also, Rozeta Rhythm.

  • As always it depends on several subjective aspects but DigiStix is supremely expressive when entering data via the Controllers section(s).

  • Interestingly in Gadget (which is about the only music app I actually use + Auria) I use Bilbao not for drums but for vocal melody roughs (I have a set of samples I did last year of me singing ‘baa’ through the scales). However, in Gadget I do the drums in a mixture of Recife (I quite like that), Tokyo (like that a lot), London (same, I like that) and even iM1 and Milpitas (both of which have a stock of drum and percussion sounds). However, I’m aware that about half of the interface is thanks to Gadget itself and the sequencer, although I’ve no complaints there.

    I did quite like Patterning’s circular approach, and as I also like Sector, I wonder if there’s a thing about circular wrapping of repetition?

    The hardware I’ve owned:

    • Korg KPR-77 (two of them), absolutely awful programming interface
    • Roland 606 and Roland 808, not really easy for full songs but okay for a single pattern
    • Roland 505 quite a good interface for the day
    • Korg S3 - infuriatingly complex, can’t make a move without reaching for the weighty manual, but had a row of eight lovely big hittable pads, which I ended up using tuned to major or minor scales as my only input it was so nice to hit
    • Roland DR55 - somehow quite wonderful
    • Oberheim DMX - I kept getting lost in it, not in a good way
    • Alesis HR16B - very easy, very alluring (and so was the matching MMT-8, like anyone who owned one, we all still miss it)
    • Oh, and Circuit, quite interesting in many ways when viewed in the drum machine capacity.
  • patterning

  • DM1. Song mode.

  • Shout-out to Different Drummer-! For ... reasons.

  • iSpark is nice. Patterning too.

  • Imaschine 2

  • Nord Beat 3.
    Can't be simpler than that, and it can sync with hardware.

  • I really like patterning too, but it drives me nuts that when i host it in AUM the little AUM bar gets in the way of the bottom part of the outermost loop. Wish i could move it or turn it off.

  • @jenkweb ispark is lovely. What happened? Guess I gotta dig it out of the cloud cos i loved that look and had such high hopes but it never worked.

  • The one with the best kick

  • The one you don’t have.
    Obviously.

  • I'm another massive fan of Patterning 2. Definitely one of the best iOS apps of all time IMO.
    However... if considering the iPad as just a drum machine sound module I'd say Beatmaker 3. It get's a lot of (sometimes well deserved) heat as a DAW but we sometimes forget how incredibly powerful it is as simply a DRUM SEQUENCER/SAMPLER.

    That power comes with (what some may consider) a very deep interface. But I think it's beautiful.

  • Does anyone have experience with the new generation of drum synths such as the arturia Drumbrute, the moog DFAM, etc? Ignoring the synthesis side of them, are any of those offerings a good method to make sophisticated repetitive percussion?

  • @u0421793 said:
    Does anyone have experience with the new generation of drum synths such as the arturia Drumbrute, the moog DFAM, etc? Ignoring the synthesis side of them, are any of those offerings a good method to make sophisticated repetitive percussion?

    So you're interested in the xox sequencing capabilities of the newer hw drum machines. Short of very expensive standalone midi sequencers, Elektron's sequencers are hands-down the most powerful. And imo intuitive and fun.

  • @ElectroHead said:

    @u0421793 said:
    Does anyone have experience with the new generation of drum synths such as the arturia Drumbrute, the moog DFAM, etc? Ignoring the synthesis side of them, are any of those offerings a good method to make sophisticated repetitive percussion?

    So you're interested in the xox sequencing capabilities of the newer hw drum machines. Short of very expensive standalone midi sequencers, Elektron's sequencers are hands-down the most powerful. And imo intuitive and fun.

    Not so much the xox seq capabilities, as they’re not good exemplars of a UI. The 606 & 808 were not super-usable, but they were about the best you could have in those days with just buttons and LEDs. I’m interested in what the most ideal way is, no matter what it is that gives it. The Electron is something I should look at, thanks.

    Here’s a thought. Imagine a clock. An analogue clock. The hands point to 1 to 12, or 1 to 60, no matter what time it is. If you add a day, it’s still the same schema. Imagine fitting a rhythm around a clock in the same way, with the same affordances that rhythms demand.

  • @u0421793 said:
    This question goes out to apps, hardware, everything, old and new.

    For the purposes of this thread, ignore the sounds (they all sound the same anyway, so leave the sounds out of this). Just think about the way that the drum machine allows you to put together the individual hits, rhythms, patterns, pieces of riff, overall sections, song, etc. Is there a “best practice” way of doing the user interface? Conversely, is there a “definitely don’t do it this way” example too? Also think about different usage modes – mobile, on a bus or train; in a chair, at a desk; pointing with a mouse, with a finger, hitting pads and buttons, etc.

    Elastic Drums. The whole package just gels with me.

    Also another nostalgia shout out to the Alesis HR16 / MMT8 combo.

  • I find Patterning 2 and Elastic Drums very intuitive.

    Drum Perfect Pro is a bit more fiddly but has an amazing amount of control so I find it worth the extra effort.
    (Alternatively just route something to Rozeta Rhythm, hit Generate and hope for the best!)

  • Best UI goes to BeatHawk.
    No scrolling.
    The small window view is the same as full screen view.
    The best in my opinion

  • Another vote for DM1. The beat sequencer built into GarageBand also deserves a mention.

  • Patterning,
    BeatMaker 2

  • I’m testing a new one based on a Roland Series 3x3 grid that’s has a nice workflow simple but elegant with nice big pads and with lots of control over individual pitch, level, pan etc. Basically sample based with user drag and drop. Should be interesting once it drops.

  • Elastic drums is difficult, I certainly can’t classify it as intuitive. I try it now and then, quite often over the ages, and I always find that about half of it doesn’t do anything I expect it to, or in some cases, anything at all.

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