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BeatStudio: A Look at the Track Builder App for iOS

I have not been a huge fan of any of the iOS drum machines or drum-along “screen tapper” drums-set style apps. But BeatStudio, by Frontier Design Group, brings something new to the table that is really useful and is changing my opinion of this sort of app.

Not only does BeatStudio offer multitrack recording abilities, quantization, editing and an array of instrument sounds, the app also allows you to import audio from your music library as a backing track as well.

I always keep all tune ideas and groove scraps in my iTunes music library for reference. I often flick through and listen to old ideas to see if new inspiration hits. With BeatStudio, I can now experiment with different feels, grooves and percussive elements, and can now actually experiment with my tunes, while sitting idly on a plane or on a long drive (not while driving, mind you). This is just an awesome addition to an already well-conceived application.

There is a slight learning curve associated with this app but it may be worth the time put in to learn it well if you enjoy the ability to play with grooves, loops and ideas with iPod integration.

BeatStudio is a universal iOS app, available on the app store for $4.99. Note: BeatStudio is compatible with iPhone 3Gs and later, iPod touch 3rd generation and later, and all iPads.

BeatStudio Features:

  • Universal app: create and share songs with your iPhone, iPod touch, and iPads
  • 32 professionally-recorded percussion instruments, each recorded at eight intensity/volume levels
  • 25+ vintage analog drum machine instruments
  • 30 vintage digital drum machine instruments
  • Multitrack recording and editing so you can layer to your heart’s content
  • Edit anything you have recorded with full screen event/instrument editor, on the fly while playing and looping!
  • Deep undo/redo let’s you experiment and recover from mistakes with ease
  • Flexible timing and quantization for auto-alignment during recording and editing
  • Now includes Stomp! Use the iPad/iPhone’s accelerometer to trigger sounds.
  • Supports AudioCopy/AudioPaste with iShred, GuitarStudio, PianoStudio and other compatible apps
  • Import backing audio tracks via WiFi, iTunes File Sharing, and AudioPaste
  • Flexible instrument layout from six to twenty cells, in landscape or portrait
  • Variable speed playback of backing tracks lets you perform, practice, and record slowed down
  • Networked song backup and restore (can use your iShred, GuitarStudio, or PianoStudio login)
  • Menu Lock for live performance or handing over to your budding toddler drummer