logicmixing

There’s an oft-repeated conventional wisdom about Apple that I think is just plain wrong, and it goes something like this:

The success of the iPhone and iPad means that Apple is now a consumer company, and doesn’t care about pros.

Now, let’s parse the above statement and say Apple sometimes makes decisions pro audiences don’t like. Well, that’s certainly true; it just happened to be true prior to the success of iOS.

It’s time to face this question again, partly because of the widely-noticed demise of Apple’s Aperture for pro photography workflows, but also because of significant and under-appreciated updates to all the other pro apps.

First, let’s acknowledge that we’re talking about three Apples: there’s Apple the computer and mobile hardware maker, Apple the OS vendor, and Apple the pro app developer. In each category, I would contrast it with its rivals in terms of the attitude toward pros and consumers.

This is not an endorsement of Apple above other computer makers. There are some fine PCs out there, and some are terrific values. There’s Windows-only software worth using – for music, including SONAR and FL Studio. The fabulously-innovative Sensomusic Usine combines modular sound powers with multi-touch you can use on high-performance laptop/tablet hybrids, something not available from Apple. (You can run Usine on Mac, too, but you can’t buy a MacBook with touch input yet, of course.) Some of you will run Windows on Apple hardware; some of you will pick PC hardware. And while many higher-end laptops fall into the same price brackets as Apple, PCs are particularly good when it comes to saving you money on desktop systems. (Ironically, the Mac Pro is now so “pro” in the sense of high-end hardware, it’s out of reach for those who don’t have big budgets.)

But it’s possible to say that you have a choice between Apple’s offerings and PC platforms (even, for some, those running Linux), rather than to say that Apple is just for consumers. It just doesn’t fit the facts.

I think it’s time to dispel the myths that somehow there’s a “new,” anti-pro Apple.

Pro Apps. First, about those updates.

Yes, Apple’s Aperture was discontinued. Sometimes, killing a product is the right thing to do. Software makers sometimes enter a market and discover later that they haven’t differentiated themselves enough from the competition to make an ongoing investment. It seems that’s what’s happened here. Aperture had some great ideas in it, but photographers already migrated to Adobe’s Lightroom long ago, and with good reason – Aperture has badly lagged Lightroom in virtually every stage of the workflow. (Now, that means you’re stuck coughing up $10 or more a month to Adobe, but you’ll have to complain to Adobe about that, not Apple.)

Happily, back in the world of music production – and even, to an extent, video production – we have more than one vendor. Heck, it’s clear that music making will forever be entirely fragmented, which happily leads to loads of competition and differentiation.

But as Apple is killing Aperture in favor of the consumer-focused Photos in Yosemite, it’s clear they continue to update the video and music production apps and view them distinctly from consumer apps. In each case, you still have other options (Avid’s software, Premiere for video, and the too-many-to-count options in DAWs), so even if Apple were to abandon all its Pro Apps, the Mac would remain a compelling platform. But given the interaction of OS, hardware, and app, it’s comforting to know Apple still has some skin in the game.

Apple has changed their approach to Pro Apps, with a steady stream of updates that deliver through the App Store. That includes several updates a year, so that users get fixes and enhancements more quickly. It’s an update cadence that would be nice to see from other vendors, too. Obviously, you want to require as few fixes as possible to larger releases that come out, but users also now expect responsiveness to changes they do want.

Logic Pro X 10.0.7 was therefore the seventh update in less than a year. Apple has allowed up to 24 processing threads, which means Logic can take advantage of 12-core Mac Pro models. Apple wasn’t able to provide benchmark data, but it appears at the very least that this should for the first time give musicians a reason to evaluate the Mac Pro. (If anyone has the projects large enough to need something like that, please get in touch.)

10.0.7 also resolves support for instruments and plug-ins with step sequencers built in even in Low Latency Mode. You can use MIDI volume and pan to control a plug-in if you like, and not only a channel strip. You can (finally) Marquee-select automation data to copy it. And in a sign that it is important Apple supports both video and music application development, they’ve improved XML file exchange between Logic and Final Cut.

Apple also clearly views the “consumer-to-pro” migration path as important on Logic, even if the same path no longer exists for photographers. Earlier this year, they even created a page to promote the idea:
Moving from GarageBand to Logic Pro X

On the video side, Apple has finally fixed the biggest remaining annoyance in Final Cut Pro X – the inability to put libraries where you like. That includes optimized, proxy, and rendered media – and now you can delete that same media from inside Final Cut. So, it’s finally possible to keep your project storage neat and tidy, and keep from burning through those fast-but-small SSDs you’ve got internally on laptops.

4K is here, too. Apple ProRes 4444 XQ support is available across Compressor, Motion, and Final Cut, there’s new improved camera and hardware support, and you can even upload 4K video to Vimeo.

Now, of course, music in particular is an ecosystem. Logic users use plug-ins from Native Instruments and Waves and Universal Audio. And Mac users use software other than Logic and Final Cut. But it’s hard not to think that it’s a good thing that Apple’s OS team, in supporting developers of pro apps, have to support Apple as one of those developers. The quality of non-Apple software for the Mac is exceptional; it’s clearly not necessary to have your pro developer be “close to the hardware.” But the reverse seems to be more significant: it’s likely healthy for all involved that Apple themselves are supporting serious creative applications, and that some of those come from inside the same building.

(A reasonable objection to this line of thinking: Apple has aggressively priced their software low, because their revenue model is tied to hardware. And even without that issue, of course, Apple is forcing developers for their platform to compete with apps they themselves make – even on the iPad. There’s an absence of information here, though, because we lack broken-out sales data on Apple’s pro apps, we don’t know exactly the financial impact on the market, and much of the evidence here is anecdotal. But I know it’s not entirely something makers of Logic’s competitors are happy about.)

Speaking of the OS:

OS: Oddly, there’s a similar repeating cycle on operating systems. Meanwhile, Apple has support at the OS level for things like inter-app audio and bluetooth MIDI on both desktop and mobile, which Windows and other mobile platforms don’t. And here we’ve reached another major OS milestone that naysayers feared would break the stuff we use. It doesn’t.

iOS 8 includes improved audio plumbing, while building on the existing foundation that supports pro audio development. (One lone casualty of recent mobile OS changes is JACK, the cross-platform inter-app platform. But as this platform was never widely adopted on Apple mobiles, and with various other options for the most common use cases it addresses, that’s hardly a deal breaker.)

OS X Yosemite, while on the surface is mostly about other features (like mobile integration), still includes enhancements to underlying frameworks and otherwise can be filed firmly under “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

Updates are still sometimes rocky for music production, but the old advice holds: don’t be an early adopter. Let the folks making your music software and hardware do the beta testing, unless you relish that responsibility yourself.

macbookpro

Hardware. We’ve heard the “sky is falling” argument as far as Apple’s hardware. But on the mobile side, Apple is now making high-spec, fast machines. The iPad Air, for instance, is a real workhorse for audio, capable of running loads of apps at once and with processing power music developers are just beginning to exploit. Apple’s laptops, while requiring you to reach a bit into your pockets, now make terrific use of the Thunderbolt bus in ways that empowers audio applications, and have spectacularly-crisp displays. And while storage is getting expensive internally, that’s partly because Apple is shipping no-compromise, high-end SSDs.

I’ve just bought a 13″ MacBook Pro, which I think is a sweet spot on value once you have a reasonable SSD, use some external storage to supplement it, and get at least 8G of RAM.
Upgradeability is a concern, though I think it makes sense to spec the machine you want the first time. It’s more reasonable to mark off points on repairability; it’s a shame that you now have to swap out the logic board for so many repairs. (Apple assures us they’re being ecologically sensitive with those discarded parts, though I’ll leave that discussion for another forum; as far as the impact on you, AppleCare is now more important than it was before.)

As always, caveat emptor – I’d skip, for instance, the low-end iMac Apple just unveiled, as you lose too much performance and capacity for the price savings.

Again, it’s worth comparing if you are OS-agnostic, but anyone complaining about these choices might just be downright spoiled. If a PC works out to be a better value for you in the hardware you need and the software you use, go for it. (It’s a different game if you need high-end GPUs, but that’s a niche – and not particularly relevant to musicians.)

But given that there are strong PC and Mac choices, is it really worth any angst over this issue?

The Desktop is strong, for now. If any company veered toward merging consumer and pro concerns, it was Microsoft. But the recent unveiling of the Surface Pro tilts Microsoft back to pro users – enhanced, laptop-style performance, desktop, Intel-based OS. And on the Apple side, pro Apps and OS X clearly differentiate the desktop user in a way that supports creative work. The fact that their mobiles are earning more desktop-class processing power and the likes, well, that’s hardly bad news.

I think it’s time to spend this energy elsewhere. The computer as we know it is for the most part better than ever.

If anything, we need to stop worrying about backwards motion and start thinking forward. Desktop creative software is still stuck in 90s-era metaphors. Most of it doesn’t deal with touch input or gestures – even trackpad gestures in many cases. It doesn’t deal with Internet connectivity in any meaningful way. It doesn’t scale properly to higher-resolution displays. It doesn’t deal with the widespread use of mobile devices in most cases – most desktop software lacks dedicated mobile control or round-trip mobile workflow options.

I think Apple, Microsoft, and other vendors have built reasonable platforms. Rather than worry whether they’re back-pedalling, it’s time to consider what could be done to do more with the foundation we’ve got.

  • beatbbeat

    what about hackintosh? ;)

    Ok… I’m leaving now…

    • http://pkirn.com/ Peter Kirn

      Well, definitely, but then everything I say about apps and OS holds true…

  • nayseven

    Thanks for this good and global analysis peter, as always you know where to point our attention !
    A small correction: Usine hollyhock is not “windows only “anymore since 1 year now and the mac version is a killer appz made for pro musicians :-)

    • http://pkirn.com/ Peter Kirn

      Ah, yes, I muddled that – what I meant to say was that you presently need a PC if you want a laptop that can use Usine’s touch capabilities directly.

    • nayseven

      no problems ;-) , and yes, you’re right about touch screens

  • genjutsushi

    I think one point that should be made re: Pro applications, is that Apple have been ruthless in altering the fundamentals of how some of their ‘Pro’ programs work. In Pro Tools for instance, the modern UI would be familiar to anyone that used the programme from day 1. Therefore any skills learned in that environment are directly applicable to modern iterations of the software. The Logic Pro UI has been through some MAJOR overhauls and hasn’t got that consistency… from a personal perspective, i have used Logic 8 (on and off) for the last 7 or so years. When i came to a friend’s new install of Logic 10, i had no idea how to do some of the most basic functions (like insert an effect on a channel, or understand how the Bussing worked). This was because of the disregard for continuity of UI conventions.

    • http://pkirn.com/ Peter Kirn

      Well, though to be fair, some of us reviewers initially complained that they hadn’t gone far … enough. I thought Logic benefited from some rethinking in the UI. That said, I’m a bit confused; I didn’t find the change in effects inserts or busing to be in any way dramatic in Logic X – did you work it out in the end?

      I’ll say this: Pro Tools’ popularity is partly due to some consistent interface design for particular production workflows; it’s an underrated aspect of the software.

    • genjutsushi

      I did thanks Peter.. it was the way that some of the features had been hidden under the ‘creative flow’ enhancing elements of the GUI that i found confusing initially.

      Apple are very good at taking away elements of their desktop OS that are superfluous to the majority of people in order to help with the user experience… but when it comes to the creative process, I’ve always found the ‘blank slate’ approach most powerful. Templates and predefined channel strip presets (for me) detract from the creative act of choosing and designing the sound palette you’re going to use for that project. Ive been a long time user of Audiomulch for that reason.

      I felt as though the UI improvements hid some of the legacy elements of the software in a slightly dishonest manner. Underneath the plugin UI (if you dig) there are still the old old ESX24 and ES1plugins lurking.

    • http://vrpr.org/ Henry

      I dare to disagree. With Logic X nothing has changed regarding “starting with a blank slate”. Apple has added tons of new presets for everything all over, but what is hindering you at just opening your old, favourite, home made Logic 7/8/9 template and save a new template to use in Logic X? Also, many of the everyday tasks still work or can be set up to work in the same way as they always did.

      I use Logic since 5.5 on Windows through all versions. And the one reason that made me go back to Logic again and again after having tried so many other DAWs is that it I am so familiar with it for all the basic stuff. It is almost in my DNA if you want…

  • Terrible

    Peter, you state:

    “Sometimes, killing a product is the right thing to do. Software makers sometimes enter a market and discover later that they haven’t differentiated themselves enough from the competition to make an ongoing investment. … Aperture had some great ideas in it, but photographers already migrated to Adobe’s Lightroom long ago, and with good reason.”

    But it is precisely this uncertainty that plagues Apple’s “Pro Apps”. (If Aperture’s demise was so apparent, then I missed it – what I’ve read are users who keep the faith in spite of evidence to the contrary.)

    Final Cut Pro X is an example of this – Apple only recently announced 1 million downloads.
    That’s a low figure for 3 years of effort on software that many
    viewed as intended to widen the market beyond more narrow professional
    use.
    http://www.larryjordan.biz/app_bin/wordpress/archives/2482

    Have users “migrated to [other software] … with good reason”? Has Apple “differentiated itself enough from the competition to make an ongoing investment”? Or will they just kill FCP X (like Final Cut Server, Color, Shake, Aperture, Final Cut Pro Legacy, etc. before).

    You’re raising these questions but you haven’t made a good case for a positive answer – all of your arguments could just have easily supported a sense that Aperture would be maintained.

    As for Apple as as Pro Application Developer: this is the only listing of figures that I can find (and it’s all guesses – the “iTunes, Software, and Services” total comes from Apple, but the rest is just a speculative breakdown):
    http://www.asymco.com/2014/02/10/fortune-130/

    If you look closely, those charts claim Pro Apps are 3% of revenue or approaching 2 Billion per year – absurdly over-estimated (likely by an order of magnitude) if you consider FCP X has only sold 1 million copies in 3 years. (=$300,000,000.00)

    • http://www.pro-tools-expert.com/ Russ Hughes

      I agree entirely. Thinking with a pro or indeed a business mindset, uncertainty is what stops businesses investing in brands, cities and even countries.

      Your writing is as ever Peter, first class, but it fails to make the arguments and give appropriate answers as to how a business (pro) can invest in Apple. I speak with experience of being part of the first fully FCP edit facility in London, we invested in FCP Server, Shake, Colour, Xsan, Xserve and indeed to workflows of FCP, only to see each investment either undermined or killed.

      Each time Apple does this to a business it leaves that business vulnerable and in the long term the business looks for other ways to build trustworthy and reliable workflows.

      It is the same uncertainty that plagues Pro Tools users too with Avid’s ongoing issues, so this is not just left at the door of Apple.

      This is what we mean by PROFESSIONAL – long term investment.

      Thanks as ever for the great writing.

    • http://djworx.com/ Mark Settle

      Agreed Russ, and this is where I find myself right now.

      I’m about to throw myself and my business into photography and video in a big way, and want to make sure that I invest my resource into the right software. I have FCPX and Motion, but with Aperture being dropped, I have to look at changing my photography workflow, and Lightroom seems to be the most logical move.

      The rationalisation of iPhoto and Aperture into “Photos” makes me think that iMovie and FCPX will become “Movies” before too long too. Avid’s future is still far from certain, so despite all the sage words coming at me is move to Media Composer, it’s a start from scratch job with a steep learning curve, and a £1K investment just for video editing.

      So given that Adobe’s focus is professional creative software, that seems to be the logical move for me. I get everything I need and more for £50 a month. And it all works together perfectly.

      Apple’s software all integrates nicely too. But the uncertain future of their pro apps does mean that hard decisions have to be made. Apple will still be getting my hardware cash, but for my business it’s time to look around at pro alternatives to their software.

    • Michael Cacioppo Belantara

      “…it all works together perfectly…” I use caution with that sentiment. Adobe usually works quite well within it’s own ecosystem but not always.. Have a look at their known issues page and you will find a large collection of things not working together perfectly. For short film workflows we have recently had a great deal of issues getting projects out of Adobe i.e.. they are not playing well with others… However – Adobe, Apple and Avid all make professional apps each with their own issues and each very capable of professional work.

    • http://pkirn.com/ Peter Kirn

      Well, frankly, I think the argument is far easier to make for Logic than Final Cut. The workflow involves just one application, that application seems to be robust at the moment, and it’s more or less the DAW you’ve been using for years. That is, I don’t see a significant change in the formulation that would determine whether or not you use Logic.

      I’m not telling anyone whether or not they should invest in Final Cut, meanwhile – that’s a profoundly different question depending on the use case. (and I think audio and video are fundamentally different, something that Avid has certainly struggled to manage)

      I’m simply suggesting that there isn’t an absence of commitment to pros form Apple, and that my impression – and what I’ve gotten talking to the company – is that Apple is investing (and invested) in their development. Now, there’s quite a lot of competition when it comes to everyone else, and on the video side I certainly can see making the argument for sticking with Adobe for their stability.

    • http://pkirn.com/ Peter Kirn

      But Final Cut Pro X and Logic Pro X have each been part of an aggressive update strategy. They’re also managed by different teams than Aperture.

      Aperture by contrast appears to have been plagued by management issues and didn’t receive updates.

      So, no, there’s a significant difference here.

    • foljs

      So, you mean like Flash mobile (killed by Adobe), Fireworks (killed by Adobe), etc?

    • foljs

      “”"”If you look closely, those charts claim Pro Apps are 3% of revenue or approaching 2 Billion per year – absurdly over-estimated (likely by an order of magnitude) if you consider FCP X has only sold 1 million copies in 3 years. (=$300,000,000.00)”"”

      Then again, video editors are fewer compared to musicians. Logic could have easily sold 5 times that. And also add Motion, Compressor, Aperture et al, and you are in the same ballpark.

      Also note that 1 million users for FPCX is MORE than those of FCP7 — a program that dominated the market at its time, and Adobe couldn’t really touch then.

  • itchy

    apple makes very good hardware and great os be it mobile or non mobile. but to invest in “pro” apps logic final cut aperture might not be wise if you want updates every so often , as apple seems to tell us time and time again

  • Collin James Diederich

    As being someone that has gone from final cut(final cut x is not a pro app) to premiere and now has to go aperture to lightroom and has already went form logic(10+ year user before apple ever owned it) live I feel apple is going for the no pro app market. They are going for the make an average joe a pro. I think everyone else will feel the same after the next logic comes out or does not come out.

    • http://pkirn.com/ Peter Kirn

      I think the third-party developers who make *other* pro apps, however, for OS X would beg to differ.

    • Collin James Diederich

      Adobe is selling more pro apps now then they have been. Sucking up all the final cut users and now all the aperture users.

    • foljs

      The whole of Adobe, as a company, costs what Apple makes from just one of their products sales in 3-4 months to buy.

    • foljs

      “”" I think everyone else will feel the same after the next logic comes out or does not come out.”"”

      They said the same BS before this Logic came out. And before FPCX came out (some, not understanding software engineering and rewrites even said it after it came out and lacked a few of their favorite legacy features).

    • Collin James Diederich

      Fcpx is not a pro app. I am a freelance video guy and every place I work at has gone from final cut to premiere. As for logic that has only come closer to garage band. Apple has no other pro apps. And time will tell.

    • foljs

      I don’t think “freelance video guy” qualifies as the be all end all of “pro” video. What’s that? Weddings and similar?

    • foljs

      “”"final cut x is not a pro app”"”

      I don’t even know what that means. I’ve done pro jobs with it just fine, and FCPX is far more capable than FCP 7, and on par with Premiere (better in some regards, worse in others). Heck, large Hollywood and TV jobs are done with Premiere, the usual “local band music video” and “weddings” (that are considered “pro”) are nothing compared to those.

      Even people who reviewed FCPX badly have come round, by the time the key missing features came back. By 10.1 the reviews were glowing, including from professionals, not just trade mags etc.

      If anything Premiere is based on a legacy, deprecated codebase, like most of the creative suite (with the exception of Lightroom, which had a fresh design, using Lua over C++ that does the heavy lifting). Their backend code is the usual crappy hack-piled-on-hack bloated Adobe fare. That’s also why its quite bad on multicore machines and can’t take advantage of the new Mac Pro.

      FCP X, on the other hand, was rewritten for scratch, to be an NLE engine for the next 15-20 years.

  • James

    Apple has a knack for ‘skating to where the puck is going to be’ and has no qualms about eliminating technology that’s obsolete to get there.

    This has a lot of benefits (MacBooks keep their value like few other computers), but also means you sometimes have to either adopt new technology or invest in kludges to keep your old peripherals around. This is especially painful for pro users, who have a lot more invested in their gear than typical users.

    Pros need to err on the side of adopting new technology. Otherwise, you end up investing money and time into workflows based on obsolete technology, creating a technology debt that grows and grows until you finally do have to upgrade.

  • theycangofuckthemselves

    Editorial: Given that Apple has about $160 billion in cash, they could have thrown a such a small percentage at Logic and easily made the best DAW on the market. Instead, they took 5 goddamn years, keeping the professional community in the dark while rumors roared of the demise of Logic, and then put out a WEAK product update that can’t hold a candle to Cubase.

    • gruntled

      Sadly, I have to agree – That is precisely what happened. My experience thus far with Logic X has been that it’s quite buggy and generally a pain in the ass to use, which after all the intervening time it took for Apple to get it done, is frankly ridiculous. If I have to use Logic, I tend to go back to 8 Studio/TDM or 9 native.

    • Mezzurias

      On top of that they release 7 versions of the application this year alone. Most of that was fixing that buggy piece of crap they released. That doesn’t prove anything about what they think about the pro audio market, that just means that enough people complained that Apple felt compelled to fix their garbage. I’ve lost two major project/songs that I was working on because Logic is so buggy that the projects no longer playback properly and crash in the exact same place like clockwork.

      Logic X’s release is how I know Apple is dropping pro audio support. If that is the kind of support we are supposed to expect from Apple, then they can keep it. I’ve moved to other alternatives at this point (Ableton Live and Studio One). Apple just shot itself in the foot because most alternatives to their apps are cross-platform, at that point what’s keeping me on a Mac? Apple has the resources and development team to make an amazing product and all we got was a mediocre face lift with barely anything under the hood changed. Bugs that have been there since Logic 8 are still there. All of the great technology that Apple has developed for OSX over the years unused in Logic. Where’s Grand Central, OpenCL, etc? Threading in Logic is just as bad as in the previous version.

      FCPX on the other hand got Apple’s full attention. It uses OSx’s apis, is a fully modern Apple application with a modern core and a lot of the missing features have been making their way back into the application. Logic is still old Logic with a new UI.

    • foljs

      “”"On top of that they release 7 versions of the application this year alone. Most of that was fixing that buggy piece of crap they released. “”"

      Millions of professional users rely on that “piece of crap” which they consider just fine thank you. In fact, for electronic musicians, in most interviews you’ll read (in Electronic Musician, Future Music, Music Tech etc etc) it’s either Logic or Live, with other DAWs in the clear minority.

      And the “piece of crap” also got great reviews from the trade press and websites when it was released (Logic 8, 9, X, all got em).

      Second, those 7 versions also added stuff like 64 bit, OSC support etc — stuff that others still didn’t have at the time, and that for some DAWs warrant a full release on their own.

      Not that “bug fixing” releases is any kind of …problem. Only an idiot would say that.

    • foljs

      “”"Editorial: Given that Apple has about $160 billion in cash, they could have thrown a such a small percentage at Logic and easily made the best DAW on the market. “”"

      Speaking as a senior software engineer, software doesn’t work like that.

      It’s not a “throw money at it” problem.

      Plus, Logic is one of the best DAWs on the market anyway, frequently even voted the best in trade reviews.

      Probably you expected that with billions you can get some magical unicorn DAW that makes your music for you and spits out rainbows?

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  • brian botkiller

    Those of us in the pro PC world will disagree. Yay, Apple makes computers, yay, they’re pretty, and yay, the apps are pretty. You’re still not a “pro” based on the computer you use. You’re a pro based on the work you do. Also, the bulk of “pro” apps are cross-platform, save for the proprietary ones – good for them.

    • !@#$%^

      Agreed. I’m primarily a Mac guy for decades, but still have an old XP box that get used now and again for various bits and bobs. The tech doesn’t matter; Only the results count. People should use what they find comfortable and creatively enabling. I still rock an Atari 1040ST sometimes for various ancient programs – It works fine alongside the 8-core PTHD main Mac. Yes, Apple has great design (for the most part) and aesthetics, and a lot of great stuff – I happen to prefer it, generally – but that’s meaningless for anyone but me. Great stuff can happen on anything, in the right hands.

  • J_

    the thing with aperture is, the features it was good at are needed just as much by the average person! like giant database management across multiple devices is probably more of an issue with people that that pics socially because they don’t delete bad shots and want to keep them all. plus, aperture was 15ish years old and didn’t account for how most people take pictures today.

    there are plenty of professional photographers that have made money off pictures taken with their smart phone. it’ll be a real boon for photo journalists to be able to take pictures and have them automatically uploaded to a shared “photos” app in in the news room where an editor can potentially publish them, or at least start sorting them out, without stoping taking pictures to upload them. it won’t matter if the camera gets confiscated either!

    i wish the final cut x database management and audio editing would make it to logic though, they are very good.

    and personally, i prefer a separate modular touch interface, if there is one, because keyboard shortcuts and trackpad lets me work faster by being able to access lots of functionality and by using both hands. :)

  • http://vrpr.org/ Henry

    The No.1 most annoying thing with non-Apple “Pro” software is the stunning absence of proper Retina support all over the place. Only GarageBand and Logic (on the DAW side of things) seem to look alright. Everything else (I disclaim Cubase and Pro Tools, because I haven’t seen them on a Retina MacBook yet) just looks like pixel hell.

    I reckon, a lot of developers (listen here, Ableton, NI, Propellerheads etc.) do create their own frameworks, where tons of objects inside their applications use own code instead of OS APIs. From a user perspective, that really sucks. I really hope it makes sense for them. But why would you use your own developed objects for file open dialogs or the window borders and minimise/maximise buttons (like Ableton does with Live on OS X)? And why is it so hard to make your UI design team build some high resolution graphics to support high resolution screens? Does it not pay off, because not enough users use relevant hardware?

    Other than that, I generally would like to hear less complaints about Apple “dumbing down” their “Pro” products and all that. They are a stock market company, not the Salvation Army. They are there to make money; and when a product costs more than it earns, you must evaluate what other value you might get out of it, e.g. strategic or marketing or whatever. If it only costs you, you have to end its life.

  • Rich Rath

    “Apple has support at the OS level for things like inter-app audio”
    Jack has been doing Linux inter-app audio for many years now, and while clunky, rewire is a working and widely supported solution on windows. The only reason jack is not at OS level is that the audio stack itself is broken out of the os, allowing it to be fitted to needs (alsa vs pulseaudio) and tuned to suit. When low latency responsiveness and free form routing are the requirements rather than full on DAW, as in live playing where a few hundred samples latency subtly change the feel, a Linux real time kernel with a chain of apps routed through jack is an excellent choice. I got 32 sample latency on my 2009 quad core PC, which I cannot get close to on windows and have not had chance to check on a Mac.