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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Fuguing Modstep sequencer on AUM mixer tutorial

edited April 2016 in App Tips and Tricks


This lesson is a bit time consuming for your creation, maybe hours for setting things to your knowledge. Not quite complex after all. Practice few times, minutes away it just like a walk. The main problems is still bugs between apps, but not difficult to repeat for playing again and again in this way. Why? Because if you want a stable set of state saving for this things. This things on Modstep to AUM mixer is quite user friendly if you really like to modulated sounds and loops and electronic synth music. This method can help you to create so complex looping song depends how you set up effects for tweaking. It also provides complex live performance show, maybe a 100% automation until music song finish without going to DAW. By far this is the only way I known for advanced setup on iOS music without beating your agony in front of your face! You can do more than 10 synth apps on 8 Modstep ports, but a few tracks setup, good to go on the beats if you add drum sound on! AUM provides stability not to say the least! It needs Modstep for looping midi; however, other sequencers and keyboards are not without help, such as midiSTEPs, Navichords, SoundPrism and FugueMachine. If you want a tutorial for Auria2Modstep, I wrote it already under 'Apps Tips and Tricks' from Audiobus Forum!

I write this up for only one reason, many of you have not given a hand on it or have no time for stress, but want a way to know your Modstep and AUM together. Just a few ordering arrangements with your patience, you can do well and brag about your apps singing to each others. So continue few times on different apps setup, you will love more of iOS music, so let's begin.

Always open AUM first including the process for past saved closed AUM file. Let AUM wakes all apps up by the setup done by you before for your AUM saved file. If you have empty new AUM opening by you now, you can go and picking synth apps you want to sequence with. It is not necessary to choose any your synth preset at first place (wait until your setup complete) and we have of no using on AUM internal keyboard, because all your synths will be sequenced on Modstep. AUM provides apps' sounds by mixing routes for 16 midi channels data. When playing Modstep, if there is sounds coming out of Modstep, those Modstep internal sounds also transfer to AUM to handle the audio. Ableton Link give real time tempo for all apps.

As can be seen photo here, I turn 2 AUs and 2 IAA instruments on AUM

Now lets open midi route matrix page:

When you see this matrix,

You see right hand side name list, they are destinations, they are not source, they need something to send to themselves, that something is midi data so that 'AUM virtual destination' provides data to the right hand side apps. Everytime you see top texts lining there, they are givers; they give midi data to right hand side destinations. So now 'AUM destination' on top is a medium between Modstep and AUM mixer. You will later see 'AUM' words on Modstep 'midi out', so Modstep 'AUM midi out' equate to here the 'AUM destination'.

Now is time to provide midi channel route number for each synth and fx, if you see fx also provide a little 3 horizontal bars on mixer for touch, it means there is a mdi channel selection needing you to give correct channel number on channel filter. So I want the fx audio out on midi channel 3, I need to tick for it to give fx app a channel 3. please, don't tick all channels on 'On', because it will mess up and cause crash on some synth later on.

Now it given correct midi channel assignment, your route should looks like this photo, but not the previous photo for route!

Ok, iSem photo here on midi channel 2

All mixer column destinations now have correct mixer channel number... include a new Turnado fx on mixer channel.

example, on AUFX Dub, you see @Ch3:2, the 2 means it locate under 1 (Turnado). 'Ch number' is not for midi channel ( important) , it is just mixer list name, please don't be wrong on Ch compared to midi channel, this will cause trouble later on. To know the correct midi channel, you need to press the 3 bars tiny square on each column.

Now is the time to add AUM internal mix bus:

To do so allows you to combine more fx apps or fx parameters to synth. Mix bus also allows grouping synths if more synths added in chain, you will find your prefer ways to mix, plus you have midi cc within for learning volume faders, of which provides to Modstep to assign midi number to those faders if you like doing so for some scenes from Modstep to lower tracks volume. Let the Modstep doing its MIDI jobs, let the AUM to control AU, IAA, compatibility issues. So in this way, you won't crash the Modstep and also get benefit from mixing tools AUM presents to you on live tweaking sounds.

Ok, we finishing part 1 for AUM setting, now we turn on Modstep and name a new file,

We then go to Modstep setting page! Here we see photo,

It is a bit challenge, first of all, you see all the destination has app name on it. I don't tick the cable icon because I only use iPad without USB connection. Now, we go one by one to explain to you. Without explaining them, you will confuse yourself.

The 'AUM' on 'MIDI destination', why tick those 3 circle icon? The clock is for telling AUM what Modstep tempo is. The AU synths needs to know the Modstep sequencer clock allowing it to drive AUM AU synth clock.

The music symbol for notes. AUM synths need to know what notes to play.

The CC is for volume fader of AUM, letting Modstep to drive AUM volume.

The 3 circle for iMini and Animoog are same, they provide AUM IAA midi slot what Modstep going to send to them!

For Turnado, you do not need music symbol, because Turnado doesn't need to know what note Modstep is playing! However, it needs Modstep clock and Modstep modulation graph midi message for.

So anything has midi sync on midi channel; such as fx apps will need to know the clock and cc message, you do the same to them on destination.

Now let's think about how you want 3rd party keyboard, arp, sequencer app to play Modstep chord and melody! So you can use Cream Mobile if you are sophiscated! You can simply use SounPrism, or iPhone version SoundPrism through Apollo Bluetooth midi to Mod. you can use Navichord, midiSTEPS, FugueMachine, Genome, Chordup, iSongwriter, StepPolyArp, Arpegginome Pro, Chordy, Chordion, Klimper, to send midi melody to the grid sequencers on any of the tracks, scenes clips of Modstep.

I here use Fugue Machine for its good melody lines. fugueMachine also has both 'midi in' and 'midi out' for multi channels to play multi synths together.

So let's activate Fugue Machine 'midi out' on 4 channels (1,2,3,4) by using Fugue default 'Start' preset. The Fugue midi data out to where? The answer is midi out to Modstep track grid or you can call it pianoroll grid.

So do you want FugueMachine send clock to Mod? No, you don't want do that, you want letting Modstep Sequencer to drive everything! AUM, synth app, and Fugue. So do you want Fugue machine midi out to send midi data and write those data to Modstep grid pianoroll? Yes, so on Modstep setting page, you should tick music icon for midi source on Fugue Machien midi out!
Do you want Fugue sending CC? No, Fugue can not send CC, so you don't tick CC either.

Now you want mod to control everything, send data, send cc and send clock! Do you want Modstep send clock to FugueM to let Mod driving FugueM? Yes! So on Fugue, you should tick receive clock from Modstep.

So lets see Modstep setting page photo,

So are you clear understand now?

You see midi data source from FugueMachine 'midi out', you also see midi clock ticked by me to allow sending clock out to destination 'FugueMachine'.

There is a catch here on setting Modstep setting page,

You need also tick midi source and destination on Modstep itself? Why? Many reason that I can ot explain too far away, but one thing you should know is on destination! You need to tick the music icon on Mod circle! Why? Because you need Fugue to write Fugue midi data to Modstep grid or pianoroll. This is the most important reason you need a clip based sequencer like Modstep to edit part of your midi notes and modulation at any time around your music production.

Lets move on to tracks:

Let's do an empty track by filling up 16 parts of 16 steps grid color, then copy the scene one by one to cover 4 of our AUM synth! Can you do that, i think I don't need to guide you on this part.


  • edited April 2016


  • edited April 2016

    So now move on Modstep, tick lower right 'IO' symbol. It shows you each individual track 'midi in' and 'midi out' for each track with channel number selection option.

    Lets tick 'Fugue Machine out' for four Fugue channels you have it selected on Fugue to 4 tracks' 'midi in'. Then on 'midi out' tick 'AUM'. You now have 4 tracks source on Fugue data through Modstep to 4 AUM destinations of (AUM destination on AUM route).

    Are you complete the setup? No! You now go on each of the synth app to select 'midi in' to let Fugue Machine driving Animoog, iMini, and 2 AU. What ? How? 2 AU? Actually you do not have option to send Fugue data to AU synth on AUM. But how do you let 2 AU midi channels know your Fugue is sending? The answer is you going to tick the red 'Arm' button on those 2 AU tracks'. this is the only way you let AUM synths know you using Modstep and FugueM to drive the data to them. See photo the red Arm on those 2 midi channels.

    Now lets turn to lower right 'chain' button!

    On chain, you browse through to 'instrument' - 'IAA instrument' - AUM ports (1,2,3,4) assigning them to each of the IAA tracks on Modstep, it will connecting to AUM IAA output ports.

    On AUM, you can see the speaker output circles change to Modstep IAA 1-4 output icons.

    This is time to light on both apps' Ableton Link. Link is for AUM and Modstep, please, do not turn Fugue Machine Ableton Link on, because Fugue going to receive Modstep 'midi in'. If you on the Fugue for Link, Mod can not communicate with Fugue.

    Trivial things include:

    Check your iSem AU if you use arpeggio, then turn them off.

    If after stop playing the Modstep, sounds of mid notes hanging there, just press triangle sign on top of Modstep.

    Don't forget all apps needs a background audio on 'on'.

    Save your file on AUM and Modstep.

    Your Turnado on channel 3, so you should setting up Turnado active channel on 3 and destination on AUM channels 3.

    Aligning Modstep tracks playheads before you record data on pianoroll grid.

    You should not use Modstep AU synth and AU fx on Modstep, because Modstep only doing midi for you. All synths and fxs on AUM mixer. This is because at current version, there is no Modstep internal midi channels for AU opened up for you to assign AUs.

    You can have Modstep internal drum pad playing, sending it to one of the 4 midi channels. Modstep internal additive synth and sampler have no ports to AUM, so you use one of the existing channels to assign internal synth and sampler to AUM.

    You can use AUM audio file looper with this setup on AUM, but advantage of using Modstep sampler to loop audio is that you can assign to specific grid for timing the loops, however, sampler loop of Modstep is 30 seconds only.

    Don't forget, you always open and turn AUM app on first, then Modstep on!

    Now, you can practice Modstep sequencer on AUM mixer.



  • edited April 2016

    The Midi route of AUM photo has no Turnado on AUM destination at first, so you should tick that if you use it! Following on photo on route has Turnado on for explaiing things.

  • edited April 2016

    IMini arpeggio is so good to morph on Fugue Machine, you should try it or assign Modstep CC to it .

  • I did not provide you the recorded Fugue data image on Modstep scene clips.
    One reason is because Modstep has ghost midi data recording when runing on reopened saved file. I wait until they fix it on next update or so... Now, Modstep can only be live performance fun, not for real track music. Waiting update, thank you developers.

  • edited April 2016

    Oh, one more, use Modstep keyboard for recording data if you want. No AUM keyboard recoding because again the AUM is for apps mixing! All data through Modstep, so does the modstep keyboard for midi recording purposes!

  • Lot of great information here, thank you.

  • @kaikoo2 bookmarked, thanks. Quite an endeavour, huh?

  • edited April 2016

    The Modstep 'io' has 'midi in' on 'Fugue Machine out', this is because Fugue playing all these 4 tracks, if you want a normal Modstep its own midi sequencing its sequncer, you need to change 'Fugue Machine out' back to 'Modstep' on 'midi in'.

    I have already ticking the Mod music icon and CC icon on source of Modstep setting page in case, see tutorial photo!

  • My iPad Air 2 running these 4 apps including 5 fx with Fugue and Mod giving me around 50 % CPU usage shows on AUM. Yes do not know Mod consumption! iPad little bit hot if running on and on when charging! I guess 9.7 iPad Pro can run 10 synths very well!

  • If you want track3 and track 4 of Modstep run complex midi notes layering only to channel 2 of track2, you just change track 3 and 4 midi channels to channel 2 on midi in and out! So this channel 2 has complex note simultaneous running on 3 combined tracks!

  • Nice work Kaikoo!

  • edited April 2016

    Bear in mind, most of IAA synths can be reloaded smoothly, but not on preset inside the synths. Too many synths on AUM also consuming time to re-setup the synths own midi channels and presets. Even though AUM is a piece of state-of-arts.

  • I have done my post-editing to clarify words.

    Thank you for viewing!

    @RustiK, this tutorial is for you. @JohnnyGoodyear, traveling back now?

    Thank you guys bookmark this page!

    I am happily gaining my own interests on Modstep & AUM mixer setup too!

  • It occurs to me that in some cases of small sets of consecutive screenshots, they demonstrate a whole ‘action’ (even if just a small one). The ‘action set’ of images might work very well as an animated gif. Usually, with animated gifs you can set the timing so that it is slow enough to seem like widely spaced steps. Maybe this might help in one or two cases?

    Are these apps useful:

  • @u0421793,

    Good to know the animated gif is on iOS, will improve the communication! Definitely considering them a buy for making tutorial. Those things used to be in Adobe, now wide spreading.

    Nice to see you on Audulus with their sequencer emulation. I did not make upgrade on it. Personal preference is to learn zMors modular, just not enough knowledge to play it well. Already said to developer, willing to buy their zMors tutorial. One day I will buy hardware filters on modular rack to play with iPad.


  • Great tutorial, thank you @Kaikoo2 !

  • dont you willing to put all your amazing stuff into one web/page somewhere?
    Thanks a lot

  • edited April 2016

    @Kaikoo2 said:

    Nice to see you on Audulus with their sequencer emulation. I did not make upgrade on it.

    Thank you.

    Personal preference is to learn zMors modular, just not enough knowledge to play it well.

    I’m tempted to learn more of that too, I’ve got it, I just haven’t spent the time with it yet. At the moment I’m smoothing out my knowledge of the idiosyncrasies of iVCS3 even further [1]

    … One day I will buy hardware filters on modular rack to play with iPad.

    No! Don’t go there! You’ll end up broke, in rehab.


    iVCS3 is not a complicated synth, but unusual in that level controls for things are at the source and not at the input to other things (which we’re more used to these days). This works just as well, except that it makes the whole machine state quite highly inter-dependent. Change one thing, and many other things change a bit too. This can catch people out if they don’t appreciate that it is because the level controls are where the signal comes from and not where it goes to (and also because the envelope generator is two parts, but within each part, is also two parts, and the timing isn’t how one would expect it to be at first).

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