This makes you realise how powerful your iPad is

Written by David Shapton

Auria/RedSharkAuria for iPad

iPads are now powerful media computers

The growth in technology is so rapid that sometimes you're taken by surprise by what everyday objects like iPads can do. Remember that the slide rule was in use by engineers and mathematicians for over 300 years - pretty much without changing. Right up to 1972 it was a compulsory item in every student's schoolbag.

The reason I can be so specific about the date is that that was the year the Hewlett Packard HP-35 scientific calculator came out. This was the first calculator to have more than the usual four arithmetic functions. My dad was given one on a trip to NASA, and he let me take it to school, where it could not have caused more interest if it had been an alien artefact from Area 51.

Since then, in just over 40 years, our handheld calculating machines ("smartphones", as we call them today) have grown in power exponentially. A modern smartphone is between a million and a billion times faster than that calculator, which was itself a huge advance on what came before it. And there's no sign of the rate of change slowing down.

You'd need a powerful PC workstation

I was pretty shocked when I saw this iPad app. There are lots of good iPad music apps - Garage Band is one of the best - but this one seems to be way beyond what you'd think a handheld tablet could do. In fact, you'd think you'd need a powerful PC workstation to accomplish what Auria does. 15 years ago you'd have needed a Sony digital multitrack recorder costing $150,000 - and that wouldn't be able to do a fraction of what Auria can do.

Here's a selection of its talents:

48 tracks of simultaneous playback of audio files
24 tracks of simultaneous recording (you need an external audio interface for this)
Convolution reverb
8 assignable subgroups and two aux sends

In addition to this it has a fully-fledged sample-accurate audio editor.

I think this type of product, along with apps like Adam Wilt's Cine Meter for iPhone, is bringing utterly professional performance to consumer hardware. And as such, applications like these represent an utter and complete bargain.


Tags: Audio


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