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Same Day Music

23 April 2006

Sony Acid Pro 6

Filed under: Music software at 8:46 pm (1 comment)

Sony have just released Acid Pro 6, the latest update to their loop-based music creation suite. They call version 6 “The most significant upgrade in ACID history, but then they would say that, wouldn’t they? The most important new features are multitrack recording and full MIDI functionality, meaning Acid could now conceivably be used as your main (or even only) application for creating new music. In particular, the ability to edit MIDI data using the traditional piano roll interface makes Acid a lot more attractive to the laptop studio musician. Acid 6 also supports control surfaces like the lovely Tranzport — they really are moving more to the serious end of the music-making spectrum.

Another big new inclusion is a special version of the Kompakt sample player from Native Instruments. As usual, “special” means “reduced”, but it still includes 2 Gigabytes of instruments and online access to more from Sony’s website.

The press release summarises the other new features:

  • Multitrack audio and MIDI recording — Simultaneously record multiple tracks of audio and MIDI into the ACID timeline through a variety of methods, including step recording, punch in/out, continuous looping and more.
  • Multiple media files per track — Layout multiple media files per track, including one-shots, Beatmapped events, loops and disk-based files with new automatic crossfade capabilities.
  • Inline MIDI editing — MIDI data can be manipulated directly on the ACID timeline, using either a piano roll or a drum grid interface. Edit all note position, velocity, pitch bend, and controller information using an easy, visual approach in the main multitrack interface.
  • MIDI filtering and processing — Process MIDI data directly on the timeline, including quantization, swing, editing of velocity values, event duration changes, and more.
  • VSTi parameter automation — Using automation envelopes, ACID Pro 6 software provides increased mixing flexibility for VST instrument parameters.
  • Drum Map editing — The Drum Map Editor provides an intuitive way to create custom Drum Map templates, to make working in the Drum Grid even easier.
  • Project sections — Create project sections that let users more efficiently rearrange time-based segments of audio and MIDI events located across multiple tracks.
  • Dynamic playback optimization — On multiprocessor or multicore computers, processing is distributed evenly across all CPUs to increase playback performance.
  • External control surface support — Hands-on mixing using external hardware. Version 6 natively supports the Mackie Control Universal and the Frontier Design Tranzport, and allows custom mapping of up to five user-defined control surfaces.
  • Record input monitoring — Monitor audio signals with real-time track effect DSP during recording sessions

They list a number of other new features too, including punch-in recording, envelope automation recording lots of other new MIDI goodies, ATRAC support and even Gracenote MusicID to save a bit of typing for all you CD remixers out there.

There was a special price for upgrading older versions of Acid to Acid 6. This offer expired on 31 May; Sony sent me an email about it on 2 April. 🙁