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Logic Pros: What’s new in iOS & Mac music production this week

This is the place to catch up on all the biggest product announcements, hardware, apps, synths, Logic/GarageBand instruments and so much more in the world of iOS/Mac music production.

Elektron has been very busy as of late dropping an all new line of its flagship devices, Dreadbox brings us the new 3-oscillator Medusa synth and BeatStep Pro owners get a nice treat from the folks at Arturia. All that along with free instruments for Mac, new iOS synths and much more down below…

Elektron debuts the new Octatrack, Analog Four and Analog Rytm MKII

Elektron is the maker of some of the most interesting hardware out there, especially considering its fantastic Overbridge technology that connects it all with your Mac seamlessly. It has been very busy lately debuting the latest versions of its Analog Four (4-voice analog tabletop synth) and Analog Rytm (8 voice analog drum machine and sampler), along with the new sample mangling/sequencer, Octatrack MKII.

Here are the most important details for each machine along with the release windows and pricing:

Analog Four MKII $1349 – September 2017

  • Reworked analog circuitry delivering very deep and defined bass
  • Enhanced analog overdrive for more bite and growl
  • Crisp, large OLED screen providing optimal feedback in dimly lit environments
  • Ultra durable back-lit buttons. Rated for 50 million presses
  • Precise, hi-res encoders
  • Quick performance controls
  • Increased amount of dedicated buttons enabling quicker workflow
  • Stereo audio outputs for each voice
  • Overbridge with higher bandwidth
  • Premium cast aluminium enclosure

Analog Rytm MKII $1549 – October 2017

  • Sampling capability
  • Crisp, large OLED screen providing optimal feedback in dimly lit environments
  • Ultra durable back-lit buttons. Rated for 50 million presses
  • Precise, hi-res encoders
  • Quick performance controls
  • Large pads for maximum playability
  • Expression/CV inputs for external control of Analog Rytm MKII parameters

Octatrack MKII $1349 – August 2017

  • 8 stereo audio tracks
  • 8 dedicated MIDI tracks
  • Instant stereo sampling
  • Real time sample time-stretch, pitch-shift
  • 2 × insert FX per audio track
  • 3 × LFO per track
  • Live friendly Elektron sequencer
  • Contactless performance Crossfader
  • Crisp 128 × 64 OLED screen
  • Hi-res encoders
  • Durable back-lit buttons
  • 1  headphones output
  • 2  impedance balanced main output
  • 2 impedance balanced cue output
  • 4  balanced external input
  • 1 USB 2.0 High Speed port
  • MIDI IN/OUT/THRU ports

This comes on the heels of the Digitakt and the Analog Heat distortion box release.

Dreadbox unveils the new three oscillator Medusa synth

Continuing its mythology theme, the folks at Dreadbox have now unveiled Medusa. It is a three oscillator mono synth with a 2-pole resonant filter and a 64-step sequencer. Modular folks are in luck too with 8 patch points for eurorack. Expecting it to begin shipping in December 2017 for around €429. We are big fans of the Erebus and can’t wait to go hands-on with the new Medusa!

  • All Analog Circuit developed by Dreadbox
  • Midi to CV, Sequencer and Arpeggiator developed by Polyend
  • 64 step Sequencer that can store the Filter’s Cut off, Modulation Wheel and Velocity values, with a memory of 7 sequences
  • Arpeggiator with Up, Up-Down, 2 Octave Up, 2 Octave Down, 2 Octave Up-Down or Played Order
  • 3 Classic Dreadbox VCOs:
  • 2x osc with saw, pulse or triangle wave
  • 1x osc with advanced wave forming (7 different waveforms)

Arturia drops major update for BeatStep Pro

Arturia’s BeatStep Pro has been on the market for a while now, but the company has just released a major new update for the hardware. As an avid user and big fan of the sequencer for our live setups, this was very exciting news. We are getting Scene Memories which allow us to recall up to 16 complete song arrangements/patterns as well as individual poly rhythms on the drum sequencer track. That means we can now have each drum pad set to a different beat division/length. Yeeesss!!! We can also set each pad to a separate MIDI channel which can be very handy for controlling certain external devices like the Korg Volca Sample.

The new Looper/Arpeggiator functionality is pretty fantastic as well. You can see it in action below:

On a drum sound, it will be extremely helpful to create rich fills in a flash. On a synthesizer or any other melodic instrument, it will be a key to create very instinctively fast bass lines or rhythmic leads. It goes even further as pushing several pads while holding the touch strip will create an arpeggio based on the related sounds. 

Everything you need to know for the update is right here along with instructions and a link for the firmware update itself. There is also a nice little cheat sheet for some of the most important shortcut keys. The Arturia BeatStep Pro goes for $299, but can be had on Amazon for about $230 right now.


The best MIDI keyboards for Mac and Logic Pro 2017 Edition

The best wireless & portable Bluetooth MIDI keyboards for iPhone, iPad & Mac

See anything cool in the world of music production we missed? Let us know in the comments below.

The Logic Pros are: Justin Kahn and Jordan Kahn, who also front Toronto-based electronic/hip-hop group Makamachine.

Want more Logic Pros? Check out the archives here and stay tuned for a new installment each week in 2017.

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Avatar for Justin Kahn Justin Kahn

Justin is a senior editor covering all things music for 9to5Mac, including our weekly Logic Pros series exploring music production on Mac and iOS devices. Justin is an audio engineer/producer with over 10 years experience in the music industry.