Building Sequencers, Synthesizers & Music Software For Windows Mobile Devices

The success of Apple’s iOS has led to an explosion of mobile music applications. Microsoft is working hard, though, to make its mobile ecosystem just as vibrant – and just as much a player in the area of mobile music making.

This video captures an hour-long session at Microsoft’s Build 2014 conference that focuses on building mobile music apps: Sequencers, Synthesizers, and Software, Oh My! Building Great Music Creation Apps for Windows Store. Continue reading

‘Großer Herr’, From Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, On iPhones & iPads

Sunday Synth Jam: This video captures a performance by the DigiEnsemble Berlin of the aria Großer Herr, o starker König from the Christmas Oratorio by Johann Sebastian Bach.

The oratorio is sung by Tobias Berndt.

The DigiEnsemble explores the state of the art of music performance on mobile devices. Music director Matthias Krebs chose the Bach aria with the intention of accomplishing a signifying step in the ensemble’s development.

Professors from the Berlin University of the Arts were consulted to optimize the musical adaption and musical interpretation. The technical performance level was enhanced by utilizing a number of elaborate controllers, including a new motion control app called MIDI In Motion by Florian Schwehn.

The DigiEnsemble documents the technical process behind their performance in this new ‘behind the scenes’ video: Continue reading

DrumPants Puts Industrial-Strength MIDI Control In Your Pants

dumpants-illustrationDeveloper Tyler Freeman has introduced DrumPants – an inexpensive wearable MIDI controller that you can put in your pants.

We featured a lot of creative MIDI controllers on Synthtopia recently, but DrumPants spank the competition in the ‘wear it in your pants’ department.

DrumPants have the advantage of being both inexpensive (pricing starts at $89) and being wearable (in your pants). DrumPants comes with 100+ built-in sounds, including drums, percussion, synthesizers, guitars and pianos. And it can also be used to send MIDI or OSC, turning your body into a mobile MIDI controller.

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While DrumPants were designed to be an ‘industrial quality wearable musical instrument’, fun is also a top priority.

“It’s a wearable music kit, so you can make sounds – in your pants!” notes Freeman.

And, if you’re worried about unsightly MIDI bulge, DrumPants don’t even have to be worn in your pants. They’re flexible and can can attach to your body or clothes in a variety of ways:

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DrumPants are being developed as a Kickstarter project. Here’s the official intro video: Continue reading

IK Multimedia Releases Updated iRig Keys Controllers For Mobile Musicians

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IK Multimedia has introduced two new iRig Keys controllers for mobile musicians: iRig Keys Pro and iRig Keys with Lightning Connector. 

Both devices are compact MIDI keyboard controllers with 37 velocity-sensitive keys.

iRig Keys Pro, above, is a true ‘plug and play’ programmable MIDI controller, designed specifically for making music on the go with an iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, or PC. iRig Keys Pro is 30% smaller than other full-size key MIDI controllers, but still offers mod and pitch wheels, illuminated octave and program buttons, 4 programmable ‘sets’ for storing complete setups, and a programmable continuous-controller volume knob,  Continue reading

Miselu Ditches Android, Announces $99 iPad Keyboard Case

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Miselu, which last year introduced the Android-based Neiro mobile music computer, has announced that it is ditching Android for iOS and introducing an iPad keyboard/case, the C.24.

The C.24 is a two-octave wireless music keyboard designed for iPad. The C.24 transforms from a protective cover into a piano-style keyboard at the touch of a spring-loaded latch.

The C.24 employs technology that has never been used in the music instrument space before. The semi-weighted feel of the keyboard is created by the use of anti-polarity magnets. Additionally each key incorporates an infrared emitter detector pair, providing real time analog position data to track the performance. This optical key tracking technology delivers velocity and monophonic aftertouch more accurately than traditional switches.

The C.24 also provides additional tactile controls in a capacitive ribbon controller that extends across the width of the keyboard. The bar is divided into two regions, each with 32 embedded LEDs for visual feedback. One region is configured to function as eight assignable buttons while the other is designed for analog expression such as pitch bend.

Here’s a video introduction: Continue reading