augustus

Augustus Loop is a tape delay effect with some out-there features – try a one-hour maximum delay setting, tap-in length, virtual tape features, the ability to sync multiple instances, and lots of unusual sound design features. It can do things that even tape wouldn’t imagine.

Version 2.2.0 has some nice new features. It incorporates 64-bit support, although unfortunately that 64-bit support is Mac-only for now.

Also new in version 2.0 (2.2 is the 64-bit bump):
A skinnable, scriptable GUI
OSC support for full control with OSC (grab your iPhone, folks)
MIDI and OSC scripting in Lua, for customizing control

Those are some trends I’d like to see more of. It proves that plug-ins can be more open to user customization, and that even a tiny, independent developer can embrace the flexibility of OSC as a control protocol.

Demo times out after 15 minutes; US$49 for the full version. Mac + Windows (AU + VST).

Explore the goodness and some of Expert Sleepers’ other unusual plugs:
http://www.expert-sleepers.co.uk/augustusloop.html

  • Captain Howdy

    Skinnable or not… they have the most wretched interfaces of any plugin developer in the history of computer music.

  • df

    ^^ that is so true, Cpt. Howdy…

    Seems to me that Peter lost all his interest for good sound, usability etc.

    Everything i see in the last half year or so is about 64 bit, DIY and OSC. This blog was way better some years ago!

  • http://aritchie rdomain

    Well I still enjoy this blog :-)

    This plug in is reasonably popular in the looping community and is a fair price.

  • http://www.sevenoi.com 7oi

    What good is the demo if it times out long before you can try out the maximum delay setting? ;)

    I agree with Captain Howdy, don't agree with df on the quality of the blog. I mean, you can pick up a magazine on the "pro" tools of audio. The digital audio world needs a blog that covers the other stuff.

    Besides, 64 bit and OSC are breakthroughs that will most likely do great stuff for ALL digital audio, heightening quality, usability etc. It's worth covering!

    I feel that CDM is the only medium that actually interests me anymore on digital music. All the magazines and other mediums all seem to cover the same thing between them, all offering high ratings on everything. I'm bored of all that.

    Go CDM!!!

  • Axel

    Augustus Loop is probably the most flexible delay on the market. All you need is imagination and some Lua skills. And it sounds really good, too. I once needed a feature and Os, the developer, put it in in a day. Same with bugs. It has usually been a matter of hours after finding one that a new version was available for download. Yeah, the interface isn't what I'd call beautiful. But you can not only skin it but literally build your own one if you need that. I highly recommend it!

  • Axel

    @df: The lua scripting and the osc is all about usability. It means that people like me who can code a little bit but don't know enough math or c++ to write their own plugins can build their own interfaces.

    I once wrote a (rather longish) tutorial on using four instances of Augustus as a looping device.

    http://ausdemfenster.de/?p=23#content

  • http://www.isle-of-avalon.co.uk gwenhwyfaer

    > Augustus Loop is probably the most flexible delay on the market. All you need is imagination and some Lua skills.

    If you're going to have to learn how to program it to get the best out of it, surely it's worth putting in a little extra effort to learn something like SuperCollider or ChucK (or heaven forfend, Csound, even though it is to SC as SNOBOL4 is to Perl) in order to make an infinitely more flexible delay? Or even SynthEdit… and you don't have to learn how to program for that.

  • http://expert-sleepers.co.uk os

    Just to clarify, you *don't* have to use scripting to use 99% of the features of Augustus Loop, or even to control it via MIDI or OSC. The scripting offers two, quite separate, things that make up that last 1%:

    * scriptable response to MIDI or OSC, for when the default response is not what you want

    * custom UIs

    With regard to my GUIs in general, granted some of them have been better than others, but I certainly wouldn't agree that Little Spacey's GUI is 'wretched'!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NALihvsTFjg

  • http://expert-sleepers.co.uk os

    > It incorporates 64-bit support, although unfortunately that 64-bit support appears to Mac-only — I wonder if this will become a trend.

    Please don't read anything into this. I just happen to have Snow Leopard and Logic 9 right now – I've yet to buy Windows 7 64 bit and Cubase 5 or whatever. Windows 64 bit support will come sooner or later – sooner if people start bugging me for it.

  • http://arcanumxiii.deviantart.com/ Sebastien Orban

    Furthermore there's more 64bit apps on Windows for now – in the sound domain or in the graphic one.

  • http://www.createdigitalmusic.com Peter Kirn

    Wow, I didn't expect this would garner such controversy. I'm behind on posting; got some stuff in the pipeline – really. ;)

    But these are all good points.

    I wouldn't necessarily celebrate Augustus Loop's UI, no, but then, there are a lot of unattractive plugs out there. I know this one is useful, and it does have a lot of interesting tools for sound design. The fact that it supports OSC in and of itself may not be important, but for one thing, it should send a message to developers that it's possible to do that. There's a mentality in the development community that things are impossible or require endless development time, and here's an independent developer that obviously figured it out.

    Check out the example Lua scripts on the site. The whole idea of Lua is that you're writing a quick script. I love SuperCollider and Pd and the like, but they do require a fairly significant volume of work to perform a task (and yes, that includes Max for Live – even more so once you add the extra work of the Live API)

    Lua scripts are typically very short and clean. Properly implemented, as here, it really is a "scripting" language in the best possible sense (which doesn't mean it isn't powerful).

    @os: Okay, I won't read anything into it. Edited. :)

  • http://www.dailymixdown.com Mark

    They need serious help with their UI. I am available for graphic design and/or consultation. Call me Expert Sleepers!

  • http://www.audiopropellor.com Sam Greene

    Concerning the sound, this plugin can make some wild, twisted textures. I had fun demoing it a while back while searching for something equivalent to logic’s pedalboard delay.

    The interface might look a bit nicer without the strange background, but it really didn’t bother me too much. There are just so many knobs and parameters.

  • wheel

    this isn't the first time i've been turned on to this plug, which appears to be potentially very interesting to me, but … this very dark brown (black?) text on dark brown buttons on marginally lighter brown background which has yellow-brown text on it ????.

    I have no moral or even aesthetic problem with the "shades of excrement" theme, but i do have a fairly big problem with not being able to read what the damn buttons are supposed to do.

    as for people dissing this blog … i don't care how many shit coloured interfaces Peter puts on show here, its the most consistently interesting dawelectroidmish thing out there … thanks peter …

  • vanceg

    Don't neglect Expert Sleepers very cool "Crossfade Loop Synth/Effect" too; Long seamless loops with ultra long crossfades and "real-time sampler" ability.

    No OSC control for that one, yet.

  • Axel

    @:gwenhwyfaer

    "If you’re going to have to learn how to program it to get the best out of it, surely it’s worth putting in a little extra effort to learn something like SuperCollider or ChucK (or heaven forfend, Csound, even though it is to SC as SNOBOL4 is to Perl) in order to make an infinitely more flexible delay?"

    I do know how to code in Supercollider and building something like Augustus in SC is just not as trivial as you make it seem. You could use SC though to sequence the delay settings of 20 instances of Augustus running in Live but then we have seperate clocks running which makes it very hard to synch Live's own effects. If Live supported OSC this would be trivial. And OSC support possibly would have been a much cheaper thing to do for Ableton than MFL but I'm digressing.

  • http://www.isle-of-avalon.co.uk gwenhwyfaer

    > Call me Expert Sleepers!

    They would, but they're just too tired right now…

  • http://expert-sleepers.co.uk os

    @Mark – make me a skin, if I like it I'll make it the default!

    @vanceg – Crossfade Loop Synth got OSC control in v3.1.0
    http://www.expert-sleepers.co.uk/index_files/tag-

    @peter kirn

    > here’s an independent developer that obviously figured it out.

    I give most of the credit to Ross Bencina.
    http://www.audiomulch.com/~rossb/code/oscpack/

  • http://www.createdigitalmusic.com Peter Kirn

    @Axel: I think he means you could make your own effect like this in SuperCollider, and I think theoretically you could, if you were so inclined.

    But anyway, the point is, if you do Lua scripting, couldn't you just as easily make your own effect? And I think the answer is, no — Lua scripting is a quick hack that makes this pre-built instrument effect; starting from scratch is more time consuming (and possibly more rewarding) but a different activity.

    @os: Yeah, I quite like oscpack. Did you use Ross' library.

  • http://expert-sleepers.co.uk os

    Yes, sure did.

    Btw there's a message above this text box that suggests your site supports Gravatars, but they don't seem to be working.