Welcome to Kelly's Music & Computers Blog

The latest news, rumours, tips and insights into music technology from Kelly's Music & Computers!

Join one of our monthly newsletters to find out about new products, updates, sales, special promotions and more!

You can also view blog entries prior to 2011.

We've answered over 30,000 questions about music & computers - why not ask us yours?

Thursday, September 26, 2013

iDJ Live II

The iDJ Live is the easiest way to become a DJ with your iPod touch, iPhone or iPad. This iOS-DJ controller is perfect for music lovers who have never tried DJing before. The iDJ Live system harnesses the processing power of your iPad, iPod or iPhone and enables you to DJ parties and using the music that is already on your iPod via Algoriddim's djay for iPad app and other Core MIDI-enabled apps.   . 

Numark has worked with Algoriddim the makers of the highly popular djay app to bring support for iDJ Live to djay for iPad. Mix your iPod music library on a hyper-realistic turntable interface. Perform live, record mixes on-the-go, or enable Automix mode and let djay mix your favorite playlist automatically. With unprecedented ease-of-use and innovative multi-touch mixing features, djay for iPad takes DJing to the next level and offers a unique experience for beginners and professionals alike. djay is available for purchase from the App Store.  
Algoriddim’s video-mixing app, vjay, also works seamlessly with iDJ Live to give you an incredible video and music mixing experience. You'll be able to interact with videos in a whole new way using real-time video transitions, audiovisual effects, and realtime VideoScratch™.  
You can mix and scratch your music, including your iTunes music libraries using two large performance platters and a central mixer section with a crossfader, buttons and knobs. iDJ Live is laid out in to carefully recreate the two-decks-and-a-mixer setup that professional DJs prefer. Just load your tracks to either Deck A or Deck B, and then control it, cueing up the start point, performing advanced transitions and even scratching.  
iDJ Live comes complete with iPad stand and custom headhpone/speaker audio cable so connecting to your sound system of choice is easy. Connect your iPod touch, iPhone or iPad in seconds using the built-in dock connector. Once these two connections are made, just switch the party into overdrive. 

Don't forget our iPad and iPhone guide that can give you ideas for using your iOS device for making music!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Sound Forge Pro Mac

Sound Forge Sound Forge Pro has always been a favorite editing suite for Windows users.  Sony has finally released a Mac version, built on a clean slate for OS X.  Sound Forge Pro Mac provides a contemporary application environment that’s perfect for recording, editing, processing, and rendering broadcast-quality audio master files. A fresh statement on audio editing software, Sound Forge Pro Mac includes a comprehensive suite of mastering, restoration, and repair tools for immediate results.

Focused editing  
Finally on the Mac, an audio editing application designed exclusively for OS X with a workflow that can keep up with your creative flow.

Sound Forge Pro Mac features a streamlined user interface that takes full advantage of contemporary OS X functionality.

Editor Panels
Maintaining concentration on editing while managing many files at once is a demanding task. Sound Forge Pro Mac features two discrete audio editor panels, each with their own overview bars, file tabs, and transport controls. View the panels stacked or side-by-side, and drag tabbed files between them for editing.

Media Browser Tool
Locating files is easy in Sound Forge Pro Mac. Navigate in OS X style directly from the Media Browser tool. Find compatible audio files anywhere in your system and audition them by clicking dedicated buttons next to each one. Navigate your entire system without leaving the application. The Media Browser tool is more than just a navigation panel. Keep track of open files and create a list of favorites using convenient Media Browser options. View a list of all open files, and mark files for inclusion in the current project. A list of open files is always available in the Media Browser, and any number of files can be marked as favorites.

Place meters in the location and orientation that suits your style. Meters can display a wide variety of calibrated ranges and display options. Simultaneously view VU and peak program meters.

Plug-in chooser
Fast access to available plug-ins, easy previewing and processing, and logical preset management are hallmarks of a quality audio-editing platform. Sound Forge Pro Mac features a dedicated panel for offline plug-in processing. Bring it into view with a single click to access plug-ins, plug-in presets, and search functionality. When you’re finished, simply toggle out of the Plug-In Chooser and resume editing. Easily access your entire AU and VST plug-in collection in Sound Forge Pro Mac. The Plug-In Chooser tool displays plug-ins and plug-in presets, with filter-by-type and keyword search options always available. Processing audio is as easy as dropping a plug-in or plug-in preset on your track, auditioning the effect, and applying the process.

Event-based editing  
Event-based editing allows you to divide a sound file into any number of independent sections that can be arranged and rearranged on the timeline. Manually or automatically create events, then move, split, copy and paste, fade, crossfade, and slip/trim event contents to achieve complex edits. Engage legacy Sound Forge event-based editing for effortless sequencing of audio on the timeline.

High-fidelity recording  
Assigning hardware, metering input signals, arming tracks, and recording high-resolution multichannel audio is a simple and fluid process in Sound Forge Pro Mac. Route your inputs, position the Record tool anywhere in the user interface, click Record, and bring pristine audio into your computer up to 32 simultaneous channels at 64-bit/192 kHz resolution.  

Zplane élastique Timestretch  
élastique is a time-stretching engine that offers unmatched quality, making stretching artifacts obsolete. Based on state-of-the-art psychoacoustic models and signal-processing theory, the result is stable timing, interchannel phase coherence, and sample-accurate stretching. Achieve formant-preserving pitch shifting that avoids the well-known pitfalls that can occur when pitching up or down. Choose from various stretching methods that are tailored to your source audio, including Pro, Soloist, and Efficient modes. Monitor and adjust settings while previewing.

The best sounding audio requires the highest sample bit depth. By truncating 24-bit or higher audio tracks to 16-bit, you are inevitably losing quality and introducing undesirable noise called quantization distortion.

Dither is the way to address quantization noise and control where it goes. Sound Forge Pro Mac includes iZotope MBIT+ dither. MBIT+ employs psychoacoustic methods to distribute the noise into less audible ranges, resulting in improved sound and smoother fades. iZotope MBIT+ was specifically designed for musical program material MBIT+ models use real music and not test tones, resulting in the most musical and sonically pleasing dither available.

Thursday, September 19, 2013


OrbitOrbit packs a massive amount of MIDI control into a compact and intuitive design that fits comfortably in your hands. Every inch, inside and out, is tailor-made for live DJ performance and powerful wireless control. Orbit is 100% MIDI-customizable, able to go as far as your imagination and creativity will take it. Wirelessly manipulate effects, launch samples and hot cues, control software, trigger lighting, and more.

Mix with Motion
Orbit’s embedded MIDI-assignable accelerometer makes your mix follow your motion. Assign any two volume, effect, or filter parameters to Orbit’s shoulder triggers and hang on for the ride. By tilting Orbit left and right or forward and back, you can create sweeping effects and even combine two effects at the same time: just hold down both shoulder triggers and start moving.

Illuminate Your Performance  Orbit’s 16 backlit pads are fully customizable, so you can organize parameters for your style of performance and customize every pad's color to what you prefer. With 4 selectable banks, Orbit’s 16 pads allow you to assign up to 64 hot cues, lighting transitions, video clips, samples, and more. Plus, Orbit’s center aluminum-faced control wheel allows you to assign up to four virtual knobs per bank for a total of 16 parameters.

A Zero-Gravity Wireless Experience  Perform wired or wireless. Orbit charges via USB and can also control your software via USB. Orbit gives you 2.4 GHz ultra-low-latency wireless performance control with a range of up to 100 feet and eight hours of continuous use per charge (up to 24 hours standby). With its rotating buckle and metal strap rings, you can go hands-off and attach Orbit to your belt or arm band, or hang it around your neck for instant access during performances.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Tascam US-366

The US-366 is a USB 2.0 audio interface that offers up to 192kHz/24bit Recording and includes an on-board DSP mixer.  

The US-322 and the US-366 are designed with two XLR with +48V phantom power and two TRS inputs. Having both options for condenser mics and line level inputs ensures you are getting the best possible sound and lowest-noise when recording. In addition, INPUT-1 can connect any high-impedance equipment directly, like a guitar.

Suited for Various Recording Environments with Adaptable Features  
The US-366 provides low-latency monitoring via the on-board digital mixer. Volume can be monitored and adjusted easily with the dedicated knob on the top-panel.

The oversized volume knob can be an integral setting for easy and speedy fine level adjustments.

The bigger brother to the US-322, the US-366  adds line 3-4 Analog Connectors
which can be selected between input and output to customize TASCAM's US-366 to any recording environment. When "INPUT" is selected, you can connect an abundance of line-level audio devices. When selecting "OUTPUT", connect to devices such as multiple headphone amplifiers. This system provides dedicated monitoring management for each player.

The US-366 also has two types of digital input/output connectors that are missing on the US-322 (RCA Coaxial and TOS-link Optical).  You can also use the RC-3F Foot Switch with the US-366 to provide hands-free control for your DAW.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Free SONiVOX software when you purchase a Keystation 49 or 61

Buy a Keystation 49 ES mkII or Keystation 61 ES mkII between September 1 and November 30 and get any $99 SONiVOX software for free via mail in rebate from M-Audio.

EZKeys Essential Pianos On Sale

Until the end of the month, you can get EZ Keys Essential Pianos for only $199! This bundle combines the revolutionary EZkeys software with three products from the EZkeys Line. Included are four equally iconic as essential instruments in any studio's or songwriter's toolbox; the timeless grand piano, the intimate upright as well as two of the world’s most defining and characteristic electric pianos, the Rhodes MK I and the Wurlitzer 200 A.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Free Cleaning & Restoration Suite when you buy Samplitude!

Free Cleaning & Restoration Suite Buy Samplitude Pro X or Pro X Suite including upgrades or crossgrades between September 1 and September 30 and receive a free Cleaning & Restoration Suite license - a $199 value!

Samplitude Pro X is the perfect DAW for uncompromised audio productions - from arranging and recording, to editing and mixing, all the way to professional mastering and CD/DVD authoring.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Nektar Panorama P1

Panorma P1The Nektar Panorama P1 is an incredible controller with the most intuitive workflow you have ever seen - all for only $299! 

Spectacular, deep Reason & Cubase implementations, along with vast MIDI programming options means you can focus on your music instead of the equipment. Set up your generic MIDI presets for instant recall when you need them or use the Panorama P1 with Reason or Cubase for a completely integrated experience.

The enormous controlling power of Panorama P1 is contained in a compact case about the size of a 17" laptop. An unrivalled amount of assignable controls makes Panorama the most comprehensive and fully featured MIDI controller around. 16 encoders, 9 45mm faders, 10 LED buttons, 28 buttons and a foot switch jack gives you immediate control of up to 61 parameters at any one time. Settings can be stored in 20 presets with individually save and loadable F-keys maps for more than 1200 combinations. The numbers may not matter but being in control does.

A crystal clear 3.5" color TFT display delivers the information you really need, for each mode or menu. Regardless of whether you are operating Cubase, Reason or programming MIDI assignments in Internal mode, the display provides detailed information that makes your workflow fluent and fast. Panorama takes the hard work out of using a controller and makes operations that seem complicated and non-transparent on other products, straight-forward and simple.

Setting up presets or F-keys maps is easy on Panorama. The Control Edit menu enables you to quickly select a control and in real-time assign the MIDI command you want. For each control values can be scaled, reversed and assigned specific or global MIDI channels. The chart shows the programming options available for each type of control.

It's hard to go places without transport so Panorama features an extended 11 button transport bar: Return to L, Forward to R, Undo, Click on/off, Record Mode, Cycle on/off, Back, Forward, Stop, Play and Record. Using the shift button, these also double up as 11 function buttons each assignable to MIDI commands or QWERTY macro's.

So QWERTY macro's...... big deal, right? That's right, its a VERY big deal. Your software has a ton of features and functions that can be activated using QWERTY shortcut commands. Assigning a command to a button so you don't have to be near your computer makes life a lot easier. Assigning a string of up to 8 commands takes it to another level. With this powerful feature you could for example enter edit mode, zoom in and select a tool with just one button press. Or create an instrument or effects track and locate a folder containing your presets so you can select them from Panorama, all with one button press and without looking at your computer.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Presonus Studio One on sale, get Studio One Producer free with any AudioBox VSL

Until the end of the month, Studio One Producer and Studio One Pro are on sale for dramatically reduced prices!

Presonus also has a mail in rebate for a free Studio One Producer when you purchase any AudioBox VSL before the end of the month.

​Studio One’s intuitive browser and drag-and-drop paradigm let you work faster and more creatively, so making music is more fun. Tasks that take multiple steps in most DAWs can be done in one or two quick, easy steps.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013


SD-1000The SD1000 sound modules offers all the timbre sounds required to perfectly play back musical files in General Midi standard and Kar.  It also has other additional sound banks with an incredible variety of Orchestral Voices: Grand Piano Stereo over 88 notes, acoustic and electric guitars, brass and saxophones of unique quality, sample organs, accordions, bass instruments, strings, acoustic and electronic Drum Sets and more!

The SD1000 also offers an outstanding number of audio Loops of Drums and Percussions, split up into the widest variety of musical genres, which certainly make the SD1000 stand out from other similar modules.

The module’s top application is when it is combined with a MIDI player (such as KETRON MIDJAY for example), or with a sequencer on computer (Logic, Cubase, Cakewalk and others), but it can also be connected to Master keyboards or multi-purpose Keyboards (Arranger, Synth, Digital pianos, etc.).

Thanks to its integrated USB port, it can be easily connected to a laptop and used in the world of musical entertainment to play back Midifiles or to improve the poor sound quality of the integrated audio boards in personal computers.

Thanks to two separate MIDI ports (2x16 channels), it can play back 2 different midifiles simultaneously, so that it is possible to mix two different songs directly or switch gradually from one to another.

It has never been so easy to create a top quality yet inexpensive entertainment station so quickly, reliably and safely!

Need a sound module like the SD-1000 to reduce latency and playback MIDI, but want to spend a lot less than $600?  Check out the PianoBox II instead!