VirSyn Addstation Now Runs On The Apple M1 Macs

VirSyn shared this video demo of their Addstation, a powerful additive synthesis iOS app, running on one of the new M1 MacOS computers.

The M1-powered Macs promise up to 3.5x faster CPU and battery life up to 2x longer than before, but will also create compatibility issues for many electronic musicians until developers update software for the new machines.

One of the interesting possibilities created by Macs moving to Apple Silicon, though, is that iOS music apps can now run on M1 Macs, if the developer enables this option.

In this video, VirSyn shows Addstation, designed for iPhone/iPad, running on a MacBook Air with Apple Silicon, and showing how the new preset randomizer can be used to generate organic variations of sounds.

Addstation offers a massively deep sound engine – with up to 512 partials per voice, with independent envelopes – and it’s $7.99. It’s too soon to know how many developers will embrace making their iOS music apps desktop-compatible, but the possibilities of dramatically expanding the number of music apps available and more competitive pricing, are intriguing.


20 thoughts on “VirSyn Addstation Now Runs On The Apple M1 Macs

  1. That’s exciting – hopefully they’ll convert over and update the rest of their product line eventually.. Tera, Cube, Poseidon, etc.. was disappointed to see no sale from them this year.

    1. They do run on the mac… the big caveat is that the dev needs to enable it… though if you use imazing to extract the apps off of your ipad, they can be installed the sneaky way… and for me its been hit and miss…. some of the unsupported AUV3s seem to work fine in logic, while others won’t recognize at all…. here’s hoping the ios devs start porting stuff…. so much good stuff on the ipad and would love to have it on mac.

      1. Turns out Logic supports AUv2 and v3 to my surprise. I wonder why some would work and others don’t? My main concern is how these plug-ins will be priced now that they can run on MacOS; before you would have to buy a packaged deal for both AU and AUv3 versions to run on both platforms…

      2. For anyone who’s curious i downloaded the latest version of Addstation on my M1 Mac mini, and while it works great standalone, it fails validation when you try to use it as an AUV3 in logic… hopefully the dev will be making some updates.

        1. Several AUv3s fail validation on my Mac but I can still use some of them by checking the box to load them anyway. AddStation is very slow to load but it does work.

  2. What’s next? All desktop plug-ins effects & synths to be sold between 1$ and 10$ because it has become the new “normal price”?

    1. What? Are you one of those corksniffing people who thinks that plugins should only be for the rich? (sorry, couldn’t resist — yeah, it concerns me, too. If developers can’t make a living, there will be no new music apps)

  3. I’m interested to see what Moog does with their plugins – they are some of the best soft synths on any platform.

    I’d especially love if they could somehow let you run them on the Mac, but let you use your iPad as a full-screen touch controller.

      1. Sidecar is sketchy for anything other than just using your ipad as a monitor. I’ve tried it with logic pro, actually using th eipad as a second window for the mixer, ive tried it with bitwig and other graphics applications(adobe, aesprite, etc). Its always sketchy to the point where it hinders any efficient workflow. If you want to noodle around for an hour and do nothing, its cran-tastic. But when you have a wacom cintiq and get busy in logic pro, its hard to consider sidecar anything but novelty when your in a hotel with a laptop trying to get busy.

    1. Mainly because Apple said. Initially the first apps to be sold on the AppStore were simple apps, simple games, simple camera app, etc, due to the limited CPU powers of the first iPhones. Then came iPhones & iPad that were more powerful and developers started to grasp what was possible. People got used to very small prices that also make apps impulsive purchases. Now everyone got used to it. Unless you are a big name (Moog, Cubasis, etc) it is extremely hard to go against it. As a developer I have seen apps that stop selling as soon as their price was above 5€. It takes month, years to develop a quality app and it is a real shame that the AppStore prices are to the Mac.

  4. Been testing AUv3s on my Mac (including AddStation). Overall, it feels like a beta testing process. Some of these plugins work ok, though the UI is obviously not adapted. I haven’t found one which records its parameter automation in Logic Pro (though they do respond to parameter automation on a lane; it’s basically one-way communication from the DAW to the plugin). Many don’t validate (including AddStation, partly because the creator code is only lowercase) though they might still work. AddStation specifically takes forever to load but it does end up working.
    There’s a now wellknown workaround to get any apps from an iPad or iPhone to install on M1 Macs even if devs opted out. This feels rather iffy as it’s not respecting the devs’ wishes. Much of that might have to do with their feelings about the quality of the experience and some of it has to do with business models.
    I’m testing those plugins as well and started contacting individual devs about the situation. In my experience, some of those plugins actually work more smoothly than those which are available through the Mac App Store (because devs didn’t opt out). But even apps from the same dev are hit or miss.

    The testing process is quite slow and there are several factors. On a fairly regular basis, it crashes Logic Pro (or MainStage or GarageBand) as I try these plugins. In a few instances, it actually crashed my Mac. While it was idle.
    I wouldn’t recommend it for someone who simply wants to use AUv3s on a Mac to save money on plugins. Sure, the price difference between AUv3s and their desktop equivalent is quite large (a full order of magnitude for Audio Damage plugins, for instance). But there are multiple reasons for this. Including the efforts needed to make great desktop experiences. We’re far from that, at this point.
    Since ours is a small niche with a number of friendly developers who depend on us, the money “saved” by running AUv3s in the equivalent of a prototype environment is money not going to app development.
    In that sense, it’s much easier to use IDAM (Inter-Devices Audio & MIDI).

    The main reason I’m testing these things is that I’m doing action-research on electronic music and I’m planning some co-design activities with diverse people, including vulnerable groups. Running those tests gives me a “behind-the-scene” tour of how these things perform.

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