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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Article about Apple audio

I’m writing an article about how Apple’s audio hardware is amazing. The AirPods Pro 2 are quite something, and the HomePods, and MacBook Pro speakers are also better than anything else.

In my opinion this goes unnoticed by most folks. I think Apple is almost as important in consumer audio as it is in the camera business. And it’s down to the same thing- a marriage of hardware and software.

Thought for/against?

Comments

  • edited January 25

    Hm. For a customer this may be looking amazing.
    Not for one, who has some insight.
    In fact, especially the software side has not that ‚glowing shine‘ as it could have or even would be expected.

  • I never got on with the airpod design (or any of their in-ear buds) - they just never fit my ears so can't comment on their sound quality but I find the speakers in my 27" iMac a bit feeble to be honest.

  • While the speakers on most Apple devices are 'ok' the speaker on the Mac Mini is a disaster...
    ...it would be nice if it had at least the same quality as the MacBook Air :sunglasses:

    The AirPods while sounding 'ok' suffer from latency making them close to un-usable for any 'real-time' usage but they do work ok for 'media consumption'.

    The 3.5mm 'dongles' Apple ship (Lightning & USB-C -> 3.5mm) are pretty darn good but the build-quality is mediocre at best.
    (I've had to 'gaffer tape' both of mine so they don't break during regular use).

  • I agree with several of the Pro points here. The AirPod Pro 2 is lovely. However the fact that getting 2 audio streams to play on iOS is nearly impossible is unforgivable at this late stage in the platforms development. I should be able to harness this desktop class hardware to have jazz on while I listen to a lecture, or a podcast while I video edit.

    And of course, the lack of an audio jack on its portable machines is nuts considering nothing has come along to replace the plug and play functionality.

  • @mistercharlie said:
    I’m writing an article about how Apple’s audio hardware is amazing. The AirPods Pro 2 are quite something, and the HomePods, and MacBook Pro speakers are also better than anything else.

    In my opinion this goes unnoticed by most folks. I think Apple is almost as important in consumer audio as it is in the camera business. And it’s down to the same thing- a marriage of hardware and software.

    Thought for/against?

    There's a consumer audience for that article.

    For music production, Apple's lack of consideration for latency makes almost all their products worthless for playback audio. We need the power of a D-to-A converter which the old headphone jacks provided but have been deprecated to reduce cases of water damage (I think they could have water-sealed the hole but it was a marketing driven decision and we are not the target market).

    As Apple shifts to VR and AR use cases they will be forced to re-consider the impacts of wireless devices and latency. Hopefully, their solutions will be based on standards and NOT hardware lock-ins. Bluetooth is not inherently slower than any other wireless transmission but the cost of real-time buffer management to reduce latency is where bluetooth dropped the ball for our needs: Fewer but larger buffers of audio added latency while
    reducing costs of creating the chips for consumer products. AptX support for bluetooth would really drive a new market in consumer goods... gamers get this in their headphones, right? IOS games can't provide realtime audio
    which seems to limit it's market against other options for mobile gaming. I don't know this market at all... no games for me.

  • edited January 25

    Yes.

    They are good in consumer audio. Ok.
    But they more and more fail in PRO audio.

    It is even quite difficult in the meantime to find working pro equipment and setup to work with their stuff.
    The problem refreshes with each new OS update.

    Latencies, incompatibilities, unsupport…

    .

  • I love my 1st gen HomePods.

  • I've got paired OG HomePods in my studio with a baffler-panelled wall behind them - the sound quality out of them is absolutely insane and I strongly doubt it could be bettered without spending tens or even hundreds of thousands of pounds. There's also an AppleTV connected to them, and as a cinema watching experience I much prefer them to the 7.1 home cinema system we have in the living room. The fact that they do both of these things so well is kinda miraculous, the demands of each are so different. They're one of my favourite purchases of all time.

    I had AirPods Pro 1 which I lost, but I wasn't that annoyed when it happened as they fell out of my ears constantly. I quite liked them when they were in, but it was just impossible to get them to stay in. Recently I'd seen enough people saying online (here maybe?) that AirPods Pro 2 stay in better so I bit the bullet and bought some and yes, they stay in! They're also pretty miraculous.

    One interesting thing about Apple audio, and this is true for my iPad Pro, HomePods and MacBook Pro speakers: my dog thinks the sounds from all 3 are real. This doesn't happen with the home cinema system we have, but dogs barking on any of those Apple devices will get her attention, and the sound of someone knocking on a door in a TV show sends her scurrying to our door barking. There's must be something going on that is creating a more real sound, even to super sensitive dog ears.

  • Apple’s work with spatial audio is simply next level, the amount of width they can get from small little laptop speakers just blows my mind. Also, the speakers they make for said laptop are incredibly too. The noise cancelling in the newest AirPod pros is scary good too.

    Then there’s all the work they do with AAC codecs to ensure as much transparency as possible, including working with mastering engineers like myself to fine tune things and even set up an audit program to make sure audio files are prepared properly before being uploaded for conversion.

  • edited January 25

    I usually work with open and closed Bayerdynamic earphones for mastering and music stuff.
    I seriously cannot use the Airpods Pro for that. Really not! ^^

    While the bass response of an iPad Pro 12.9 and the macBook Pro 16 is quite good,
    these devices are not able to reproduce the frequency range that is required for doing any proper mastering.

  • edited January 25

    I love most Apple things and have invested plenty in their hardware, but I must say the “Beats Audio” sound system that came with my car sounds like utter garbage. I had previously a Fender in-car audio system that was fantastic.

    (Just in case anyone happens to not know this, Apple bought the company and brand “Beats by Dre” some years ago.)

  • edited January 25

    I'm partial to older Apple earpods/airpods, because my ears just can't stand the "brain plug" kind of in-canal buds, and Apple is one of the few companies that still make earphones with buds that you can just place in your ear without pushing it in. I don't think their audio quality is miraculous but they are good enough.

    As Samu said the Mac mini sounds tragic :). iPad air and pro sound cool. I find airpods max overhyped and overpriced (at least for music), especially given what other headphones in that price range can do.

    Removing the jack from iPads is a crime against music making humanity.

  • @Samu: The 3.5mm 'dongles' Apple ship (Lightning & USB-C -> 3.5mm) are pretty darn good but the build-quality is mediocre at best.
    (I've had to 'gaffer tape' both of mine so they don't break during regular use).

    I always suspected you were a gaffist… I guess we all are sometimes.

  • @ervin said:
    I'm partial to older Apple earpods/airpods, because my ears just can't stand the "brain plug" kind of in-canal buds, and Apple is one of the few companies that still make earphones with buds that you can just place in your ear without pushing it in. I don't think their audio quality is miraculous but they are good enough.

    As Samu said the Mac mini sounds tragic :). iPad air and pro sound cool. I find airpods max overhyped and overpriced (at least for music), especially given what other headphones in that price range can do.

    Removing the jack from iPads is a crime against music making humanity.

    Next time I see Tim Cook (and by the way, I never see Tim Cook) I’m asking him to bring back the 1/8” audio jack.

  • jason said:
    Hm. For a customer this may be looking amazing.
    Not for one, who has some insight.
    In fact, especially the software side has not that ‚glowing shine‘ as it could have or even would be expected.

    I'm thinking more about the low-level software, like Spatial Audio, and auto-switching (which is flawless for me since iOS 16.3)

  • The Mac mini speakers are so bad it's almost like Apple is trolling us. But the Studio Display speakers are good enough for listening, and also for basic music making--although not mixing of course.

    The most impressive for me are the AirPods Pro 2, which are almost unbelievable, and the MacBook Pro speakers, from the M1 14- and 16-inchers onwards. With Spatial Audio on, they really create a big sound picture, and the bass is surprisingly low and tight.

    And on my 2018 iPad Pro, I regularly watch TV and movies with my significant other. We used to use an iLoud for audio, but we moved house, lost if for a while, and now we don't bother.

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