Okay, that’s technically not a snow leopard, but I came pretty close, right? Photo (CC) Mark Kenny.

For the latest on Mac OS X Snow Leopard (10.6), be sure to check out our full round-up. It’ll be regularly updated through the coming days.

We have updates from Propellerhead and Ableton. Basically, the message is what we’re hearing across the board – developers have been testing their software, but you should be cautious about updating and ensure all the hardware, software, and plug-ins you want to use work. More details on the state of development from these favorites to follow… notably, including an expected update to Live 8 that will bring full, official support to 10.6.

Updated: More news coming in and added to the round-up page. Antares reports their software works — good news. But the big news is that many Tascam hardware products will need driver updates. That is suggestive of changes to the OS that could impact other audio interfaces from other vendors. I’m going to keep saying this – upgrade on launch day at your own risk. Writing and testing audio drivers is tremendously time-intensive, so if you want everything to work, you’ll need to verify compatibility before you upgrade. Snow Leopard’s improvements will only be cool if your audio box works, too.

Ableton’s Dom Wilms, Manager – Technical Support, writes CDM:

10.6 is not officially supported yet, as we’re currently testing it with Live 8 and based on the results we will release a free bugfix update during the next weeks that will officially support 10.6.

It’s likely that Live 7 will also be just fine with 10.6 – but we don’t want to promise this right now before the tests are all finished and us being sure that we can achieve 100% compatibility.

And yes, we also do not recommend upgrading yet if stability is crucial for the used system. In this case customers should wait until all third party software and hardware products are confirmed to work with the new cat…

We will come up with a little FAQ regarding those questions in our forum today or tomorrow.

Note that reader Jae sent in a thread from the Ableton forums with some testers, but I wouldn’t take it as scientific evidence. It begins with a user finds a reduction in CPU usage that’s actually too large – that is, it seems there’s some significant variable that’s not controlled.

None other than CEO Ernst Nathorst-Böös writes in with the official statement from Propellerhead. So far, so good – just, again, approach this new OS with caution.

Mac OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard) Compatibility Statement

Apple have released a new operating system, Mac OS X 10.6 also known as Snow Leopard. Our products have been tested on this new OS X version and we are happy to report that all our applications are fully functional.

Please note the following non-critical issues:

ReCycle – You need to activate Rosetta to make ReCycle work. This is similar to what happened if you ran ReCycle on a Intel-based Mac under Mac OS X 10.5.

Reason and Record – The text in the device patch selector has a display bug. The characters O, o and 8 have filled rather than hollow circles.

Record – The Record installer reports an (actually non-existing) problem after installation, but Record runs fine. You can safely use Record without any problems.

Hardware Note

Your music system does not consist of software alone. Please be aware that you may need to update the installation of your audio hardware, keyboard controller or other controller when upgrading to Mac OS X 10.6. We recommend that you consult the hardware manufacturer for more information about compatibility, before you upgrade your operating system.


While Propellerhead Software has gone to great lengths to verify the information above, please note that it is based on early versions of Mac OS X 10.6 and that the testing performed is by definition limited. This information does not constitute any warranty, express or implied.

By the way, I want to thank developers who do post frank information on the forums and who have helped us out with this series – at a time when they don’t have all their testing data yet.

  • Jobot//

    More liek Cheetah, amirite? >_<

  • Let's call it a cat.

    Maybe the Snow Leopard is on the other side of the truck.

  • I have learned, though – do NOT alter the racial makeup of the cat. Bad things happen. Ask Microsoft.


  • df

    Jesus Peter, isn't there something else going on… first page and only snowleopard, snowleopard, snowleopard …

    feel like i'm on mactalk or something.

  • RayFlower

    M-audio update:


    They say the drivers wont install, but class compliant hardware should work.

    However in my case, i upgraded a previous install on a fw800 hard drive and the driver seems to work for my firewire solo, then again do this at your own risk.

  • Martin

    I had a look at motu´s website, they updated their drivers today. So i´ll go for snow leo today 🙂

  • If you love your stable system, why in God's name would anyone consider updating? Atleast wait a few months.

  • Brandon

    Peter, thank you for being on the ball with this info. Snow Leopard watch page is really helpful.

    Good to see my ancient hand-me-down Tascam US-428 is working with 10.6!

  • @pg13 Gearlust? 🙂 Similar to why some people keep chompin' down new soft synths and effects instead of intimately learning what they already have? It's such a fever.

    I'm going to wait until major manufacturers, notably Ableton and NI, have given time to settle and the green light on 10.6. Otherwise, the performance boosts and other advantages may be offset by "WHYYYYY DID I JUMP THE GUN?"

    Thanks for this report.