Apple fills up their iMacs with far too little memory to be useful, so the first thing you want to do when you buy a new machine is think about installing additional memory. Apple’s memory isn’t cheap and iMacs – apart from the iMac Pro – can easily be upgraded after having purchased one with the standard 8GB installed. The question is how much you need to buy, given that even third-party RAM like that of Crucial isn’t for free. It all depends on what you plan out to do with your new iMac.
Sound Devices released their MixPre series of audio recorders earlier this year, with the MixPre-10 the most recent to have been introduced. We had the opportunity to try out a MixPre-6, a recorder that can handle eight channels.
Suites for mastering audio exist in all shapes and forms. IK Multimedia developed a mastering suite together with Gavin Lurssen, the owner of a multiple Grammy award winning mastering studio. It looks exactly like the real thing and is based on Lurssen's studio equipment. The app annexe DAW plug-in incorporates the best practices of the studio.
iZotope’s RX audio editor was upgraded and released last week. It repairs, restores and enhances audio and is frequently used to fix sub-par audio in post-production. With nine new features included, version 6 is the biggest RX upgrade ever.
SpectraLayers started life as a sluggish but innovative spectral analysis app. After Sony took over, it became snappier and was developed further with some much needed functionality. Now, in its fourth generation, SpectraLayers Pro changed hands again. With Magix at the steering wheel, the application has been significantly upgraded again.
Creating virtual system-level devices from apps and audio equipment with Loopback is a breeze.
Reason has always been about making music and innovative audio tools. With the new version, it becomes easier to create a masterpiece, even if you’ve never learned to read a note. Reason 9 has Players, easier access to editing modes and the ability to edit audio pitch. It comes with the popular Pulsar dual channel LFO — previously only available as a Rack Extension. It has more than 1000 new patches in the Reason Sounds library, including several new ones from sound designers.
The mother of all synthesisers and the one all others try to beat must be the Moog. Moog, the company, still manufacture the actual synths, which are quite expensive. The Moog Model 15 is a digital recreation of a box the size of a small refrigerator. Now I've only heard recordings of music created with a Moog, so I can't tell you what it sounds like when you're standing beside the real thing, but I can tell you this: the recordings of the iPad Moog Model 15 app that I made come close to the recordings of the real thing.
You can buy a 3m microphone cable for €10, but Neumann sells one for €300. Neumann is the German manufacturer whose mics are used in Deutsche Grammophon recordings. The Chord Company doesn’t make microphones, but it knows cables. They make a microphone cable using the same mixture of knowledge, skills and technology as the one they use when making some of the world’s best Hi-Fi audio cables: the Cream cable.
Myriad is an audio batch processor. It has been for some time, but version 4 has been totally redesigned. It has beautiful looks and processes files at blazing speeds. Myriad has a large number of processing actions you can combine and save into workflows. It will simultaneously export to multiple formats, sample rates and frequencies giving you advanced configuration options and dithering algorithms.