It’s been a long, strange, mobile trip. Part of the appeal of iOS apps for music when they first arrived was doing just one thing at a time.

But what if you want that focus on music making – and still have multiple tools working at once?

Audiobus was the app that popularized the notion of interconnecting apps on mobile, patching together effects and instruments and mixers and production tools. And now, more than ever, the idea of a device like an iPad as an all-in-one studio is starting to seem pretty reasonable. Apple’s latest iPad Air delivers on the promise of desktop-class performance in a tablet, and it’s surely just the beginning.

Now Audiobus 2 is offering still more-powerful stuff. It also answers the question of why you’d want to buy a third-party app when Apple’s own OS is slowly baking in its own inter-app audio features. Audiobus 2 might cost a few extra bucks, but its developer support is unparalleled, and it can complement Apple’s own functionality with stuff the OS on its own doesn’t do – like building a centralized hub in which apps can connect.

In this version:

  • Multi-Routing. (US$4.99 add-on, in-app purchase, though for power users probably worth it.) Connect an unlimited number of apps to other apps – perfect for those new iPads, or advanced chaining. And use multi-channel input hardware.
  • Save and recall presets – even save them as recipes and share on email, Twitter, Facebook.
  • State-Saving: in compatible apps, save/recall your workspace in apps like Nave, JamUp, Swoopster, Sector and DM1.
  • New UI, with iOS 7-style colored shading to reflect the apps you’re using.

US$4.99, today.

I also hear from one tester that there’s a bit of a bug with the Multi-Routing in-app purchase. If the app is crashing for you after you buy the add-on, try deleting and reinstalling Audiobus. Your purchase will still be there, and everything works fine. This is unconfirmed, so your mileage may vary; I expect it’s something they’ll fix.

Now let’s watch some videos:

Effect Chaining-iPhone

  • Jon

    Thanks for the tip on deleting/reinstalling. I was stuck and that got it working for me.

  • newmiracle

    Peter, sorry if this is off topic a bit. But this advancement for iOS music making just reminds me of the state of other mobile music platforms. I remember seeing a while back that Android would be getting better with it’s audio engine and latency. Also, Windows Phone 8.1 was just announced.

    Some things just might not have any news going on in this regard (Android?), or maybe it is too early to call (WP8.1?), but could we get a CDM “State of the Union” on mobile music/audio performance?

    I had been hoping for more Android advancement by now. Not to say that things haven’t gotten better, but they certainly don’t seem on par with iOS. I was hoping to not have to buy an iPad to do more advanced mobile musical stuff, but after all this time I’m ready to bite the bullet on an iPad Air or whatever they announce this summer. Audiobus 2 is just another contributing factor to that desire.

    • foljs

      Get an iPad. Due to fragmentation and latency issues that are still going on, Android will not be on par with the iPad for the next 3-4 years at least.

      Plus, the sales of Android tablets are meagre (and most of them sold have far less CPU power than the iPad Air), so music developers don’t have as much an incentive to dive in. Add to that that Android mostly caters to lower end of the market (where people don’t fork out as much money for apps) and that’s even less of an incentive.

      Also consider the whole ecosystem — from audio interfaces to guitar amp emulations and controllers available for iOS, even from names such as Apogee.

      As for WP8.1 it’s too early, and it has very few users to make sense to develop for it.

    • Miguel Marcos

      I try to remain as neutral as I can in general but right now foljs is completely right, iOS has no competition in this segment by a long shot on any other platform.

      I was playing around with AB2 last night. It’s jaw droppingly good.

  • Lloyd Barrett

    It’s good but not the big leap forward I was expecting. From the Multi-routing image I thought I was getting more than just the ability to have multiple parallel signal flows. I’ve been using MultiFX to send Loopy through two separate mono FX lines out to a mixer and was hoping I could swap it out for two separate lines with AUFX DUB on one and SPACE on the other.