Retronyms Tabletop Turns iPad Into Modular Virtual Studio

iPad Music Software: Retronyms has introduced Tabletop – a new virtual studio that turns an iPad into an expandable modular music environment, where you can mix and match different devices.

More than a dozen devices are available, including samplers, mixers, effects and sequencers. Tabletop lets you patch together the virtual gear to create beats, compose songs or perform live.


  • 15 unique Devices at launch
  • 300 sounds (multisample instruments, loops, phrases)
  • Record sequences, arrange into songs
  • Adjustable quantization (pre- and post-record)
  • Recordable parameter automation
  • Overdub and replace record modes
  • Trigger sequences and patterns live
  • Multitouch instruments and devices
  • Sampling (internal mic, line in)
  • Adjustable tempo
  • Import your own sound library, save presets
  • Support for imported .mid phrases
  • Insert and send/return (master) effects
  • Undo history
  • 44Khz, studio-quality audio
  • Sync 2 iPads running Tabletop or other apps with WIST
  • Import sounds from dozens of apps with AudioPaste

Note: Tabletop comes with a basic set of modular devices, which will be expandable via in-app purchases.

Included devices:

  • Gridlok: Pad Sampler
  • M8RX: Tone Matrix
  • RS3: Polyphonic Stereo Keyboard
  • Mr. O: Master Output
  • Goblin MX8: 8-Channel Mixer
  • Spinback: Turntable Player
  • Recorder M2: All-Purpose Input Recorder
  • Filtr LP: Low-Pass Filter Effect
  • T101 – Triggerator: Sequence and Perform

Tabletop is an interesting concept for an iPad app – taking the idea of Propellerhead Reason and re-imagining it for multitouch computers.

Check out the details and demos below and let us know what you think of Retronyms Tabletop!

Tabletop is available now for $4.99.

Here’s an artist overview of Tabletop:

Here’s a demo of track-building with Tabletop:

Additional demos are available at the Retronyms site.

14 thoughts on “Retronyms Tabletop Turns iPad Into Modular Virtual Studio

  1. i'm dissapointed that most of the modules are in-app purchases. i'd rather pay 15 to get everything than pay 5 bucks a pop for things such as a bp filter. retronyms seems to make quality stuff but they do not seem to support their apps very long (eg, dopplerpad) and they’re greedy.

  2. Finally after 5 years, IOS users can finally enjoy something similar to Audiotools.

    Imagine if Apple would allow Flash on their plaftorm would’ve had access to a modular environment like Audiotool much earlier, and we wouldn’t have to deal with in-apps-purchases for extra modules.


    But really this is why my main tablet is still a Win-tablet.

  3. I bought it. It seems interesting but I’m not sure if I will use it over FL Studio. I’m having reservations about $5 for delay, $5 for flanger, $5 for reverb, $5 for bp filter, $3 for cross fade, $10 for mixer with sends. I’m happy to pay for a good app (all these synths as of late are starting to hurt the wallet) but how about $5 or $10 for the full pack?

    Yes, I’ve been spoiled by 99c apps.

  4. I bought it and man it crashes way too often… and at totally random.
    I wrote the support an email and they said they are fixing these issues for the next update.
    The in app purchases are kinda ridiculous (3€ for a cross fader??? wtf) and loading samples on the drumpad thing is a tedious task. Having a proper synth would rock (nothing fancy – but at least something more than just ADSR and pitch as the one included), i bet they'll add one in the next update. As i said, the one included is very very basic (it's not even a 'synth', really – rather a keyboard sampler)
    Also, i'd love it if the matrix style synth/seq machine could also output its sequenced notes to the keyboard. The gridlock is probably the highlight here, although the lack of even basic sequence editing tools beside cut/paste/clear makes it a little tedious to work on (ie u can't delete single notes). But it's definitely easy and does the job. The history is a nice touch and most of the times it's really helpful. Another needed feature is solo/mute on the included mixer (i suppose they want you to buy the other one…). The only included FX is a lowpass filter…that sounds terrible imho. Sweeps are steppy and byt he time you reach a high notch it would be already screaming in pain. It definitely doesn't make me want to check out (ie BUY) the others…
    Talking about the 'arranger' machine, I must say i still havent managed to understand the way those blocks work. The guide goes briefly over this, and an example/tutorial would have been nice. It's surely not the most straightforward thing to learn.
    But all in all it's a cool app, i'm glad i bought it. I haven't tried FL but i might give it a go soon…

  5. The price is ok for what is offered. The “extras” are too expensive, but as this is not going to be my main tool (prefer FL Mobile) I don’t really need the extra stuff.

    Sure looks like Audio Tool…

  6. This seems like a very valid point – most of us are fine with paying more to get a good app, but that doesn't translate into paying $5 bucks here and there for relatively minor features.

    The reality is that developers are trying to figure out how to turn these iOS music apps into an ongoing business, and that's going to be a challenge without going beyond $5 apps.

  7. I think in-app is appropriate for some things — mainly games. Seeing in-app purchases required for a music app makes me have no interest in it. I pretty much buy every (decent) new iOS synth app because I'm trying to encourage their development, but I don't expect to be nickel-and-dimed thereafter.

  8. Gotta agree with the consensus here. At $5 a pop to add some pretty basic functionality there's no way I'd even consider this app.

    Just charge me a fair amount up front and give me everything.

  9. I have to say when I got sent the link from a friend I didn’t think it would finally draw me away from my 2000xl. This app is totally awesome. I’ve now unplugged my 2000xl with zip drive! Why should I bother with the space and connections when I can have the power of it all in one app…?
    At first I was a little disappointed that there is only a four track mixer, but when I learnt that it can be used as an instrument device in Retronyms Tabletop my disappointment faded when I admired the integration it has with this free app. If I’m correct, you could effectively have 32 mpc tracks! WIth the sampler feature allowing you to access your music library there isn’t really much you can complain about!
    It doesn’t forget the old skool, as it’s knee deep in the future!

  10. The only thing would add is that would benefit from a a better mixer to accomodate the possibilites and also better solutions with the export feature so it can exported as a layered file so to speak then your laughing!

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